NC Wesleyan Honors Program Receives Donation for Upgrades


ROCKY MOUNT, NORTH CAROLINA – The Taylor and Crocker families recently provided funds to refurnish the Taylor-Crocker Honors Program Lounge at NC Wesleyan University and purchased Honors Jackets for all 50 students in the Program. The lounge was relocated to a larger space on campus and received new carpet, paint and furniture, along with cupboards that are stocked with snacks and drinks for students to enjoy.

“The recent changes and updates to the Honors Lounge are simply amazing! On behalf of the program, I personally want to express my sincerest thanks to the Taylors and Crockers. Their efforts will ensure the lounge is a special place for Honors Program students now and for years to come,” stated Dr. Bill Yankosky, Director of the Taylor-Crocker Honors Program. “We are very appreciative of the support these two families have given to the program and look forward to strengthening that relationship in the years to come.”

Originally established in 1988 under the leadership of former English Professor, Dr. Steve Ferebee, the Program was renamed in 2009 when Roger G. Taylor, class of 1970, and his wife, Gaile, met with former President James A. Gray III. The funding that was provided for The Roger G. and Gaile Davenport Taylor Honors Program covered memberships and attendance to Honors Association Conferences, Honors Project supplies and thesis binding, guest speakers, social events for team building, professional development, Honors symposiums and travel.

In 2014, NCWU Board Chair, Dr. Dan Crocker and wife Brenda, came alongside the Taylors to support the initiative and a $100,000 pledge was made to fund the Taylor-Crocker Honors Program. The Crockers also established the Dr. James Durant Melton Outward Bound Scholarship that supports Honors Students who participate in the NC Outward Bound Program which offers challenging outdoor adventure programs. 

“The Taylors and Crockers have been avid supporters of North Carolina Wesleyan University and their investment in the Honors Program has definitely been impactful for our students,” stated Tammy Robinson, Director of Donor Engagement. “The newly furnished Honors Lounge is a beautiful and welcoming space for our Honors students. It’s a comfortable, dedicated space just for them, equipped with snacks to relax, study, read or socialize. We are so grateful for the generosity of the Taylors, the Crockers and all those who have given to the Honors Program.”

Incoming students with a combined score of at least 1170 on the Critical Reading and Mathematics sections of the SAT (or equivalent ACT scores) and a high school GPA of 3.5 or higher are invited to apply to the Taylor-Crocker Honors Program. Freshmen enrolled in the Program take special freshman courses in English and Humanities. Honors Program students then take one honors course each semester during their sophomore and junior years. During senior year, these students design and complete a supervised, interdisciplinary project consisting of a written and oral component. The project gives honors students the unique opportunity to work on an individual basis with a faculty member.

About North Carolina Wesleyan University

North Carolina Wesleyan University (NCWU) is a small, private Methodist-affiliated institution with a liberal arts-based core curriculum that prepares students for professional advancement, life-long learning and responsible participation in their communities. NCWU offers liberal arts, professional and graduate degree programs for traditional, transfer and working-adult students. The skills cultivated by faculty and built into the curriculum include critical thinking and reflection, communication, collaboration, and information technology. North Carolina Wesleyan University delivers education that is personal, practical and purpose-driven. Personal…through mentoring and the connections that are provided. Practical…by helping students develop lifelong skills. Purpose-driven…by helping them fulfill their purpose in life. With students from all over the United States and more than 40 different countries, the University has immense cultural diversity. To learn more, visit ncwc.edu and follow on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, TikTok and Instagram.

University Honors Marion Barnes Family with Press Box Naming


ROCKY MOUNT, NORTH CAROLINA – NCWU’s Board of Trustees recently voted to name the future Vernon T. Bradley, Jr. Sports Stadium Press Box in honor of Marion Barnes’ family. Barnes’ father, Guy Barnes, was one of the original founders of NC Wesleyan. The Marion Barnes Family Press Box will kick off Phase II of NC Wesleyan’s Sports Stadium Campaign.

(L to R) Don Stallings, Dr. Evan D. Duff, Marion Barnes and Jeff Filkovski stand on the new Stallings Turf Field at Vernon T. Bradley, Jr. Stadium.

Marion Barnes is the owner of Frontier Trailer Associates, Inc. in Rocky Mount, NC directly adjacent to Wesleyan’s new stadium. NCWU recognizes the many and longstanding efforts of Mr. Barnes, including years of dedicated service and personal contributions to the University, as well as additional gifts to the Sports Stadium fundraising efforts. To date, he has single-handedly raised over $2 million towards construction of the stadium.

“Marion’s love for Wesleyan and his belief in the ability to shape students’ lives through athletics remains evident in his personal commitments, as well as the tenacity in which he has led the fundraising effort for the stadium. He and his family’s dedication to education in Rocky Mount, specifically at Wesleyan, will forever be one of their family’s legacies,” stated Aaron Denton, VP of Athletics.

Phase I of the Sports Stadium Campaign was unveiled this April when Vernon T. Bradley, Jr. presented a $1 million check. Stallings Field at Vernon T. Bradley, Jr. Stadium consists of a new turf field, lighting and additional parking. As funding allows, additional phases will include permanent seating, scoreboards and a new fieldhouse. The new fieldhouse will contain an athletic training room, weight room, classrooms, meeting space and offices. Others who are interested in helping with Phase II of the campaign can contact Aaron Denton, VP of Athletics, at adenton@ncwc.edu.

About North Carolina Wesleyan University
North Carolina Wesleyan University (NCWU) is a small, private Methodist-affiliated institution with a liberal arts-based core curriculum that prepares students for professional advancement, life-long learning and responsible participation in their communities. NCWU offers liberal arts, professional and graduate degree programs for traditional, transfer and working-adult students. The skills cultivated by faculty and built into the curriculum include critical thinking and reflection, communication, collaboration, and information technology. North Carolina Wesleyan University delivers education that is personal, practical and purpose-driven. Personal…through mentoring and the connections that are provided. Practical…by helping students develop lifelong skills. Purpose-driven…by helping them fulfill their purpose in life. With students from all over the United States and more than 40 different countries, the University has immense cultural diversity. To learn more, visit ncwc.edu and follow on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, TikTok and Instagram.

Wesleyan Alum Makes On-Campus Football Possible for 2020 Season


ROCKY MOUNT, NORTH CAROLINA – North Carolina Wesleyan University is thrilled to announce that all home football games are scheduled to be played on campus for the 2020 season due to a generous donation from alumnus, Vernon T. Bradley, Jr. The College recently received Bradley’s gift of $150,000 to be used for bleachers, a scoreboard and other signage.

First-ever on-campus football game for homecoming

NC Wesleyan saw great success last fall with its first-ever on-campus football game for homecoming on the Vernon T. Bradley Jr. football practice field. A 1980 graduate of Wesleyan, Vernon T. Bradley, Jr. is a 2007 NCWC Athletics Hall of Fame inductee and the 2016-2017 Distinguished Alumni Award recipient. As a tennis player at Wesleyan, he enjoyed a solid four-year career that saw him become one of the most decorated athletes in the program’s history.

A three-time Most Valuable Player from 1978 to 1980, Bradley was the first tennis player to receive MVP accolades on three occasions. He also claimed another Bishop milestone in 1978 when he earned Dixie All-Conference honors at #1 singles. Once again, being the first Wesleyan player to achieve such honors.

Bradley has remained an avid supporter of NC Wesleyan over the years and has enjoyed a successful career in real estate. “Vernon T. Bradley Jr. continues to be a leader in many ways and among individual donors, Vernon is our #1 donor, giving more than any other individual in the history of the College”, stated President Duff.

“I am so excited that the opportunity our campus and community enjoyed last year with our first-ever on-campus football game will be expanded by Vernon’s consistent and overwhelming support of the College. The impact on our student-athletes and campus community cannot be overstated,” stated Aaron Denton, Director of Athletics.

The namesake of several campus landmarks, including the Vernon T. Bradley, Jr. Sports Complex, Residence Hall, Football Practice Field, Field House and Lobby, his commitment and dedication to North Carolina Wesleyan University is evident in his accomplishments both on and off the court.