As we reflect on 2015, I am indeed thankful for the support that our community has given to Rowan-Cabarrus Community College and its important mission. I am gratified and inspired by all that we have accomplished together this year. We have experienced an enormous amount of change and progress in just a single year – all with an emphasis and focus on building a more prosperous region.
This year marked our successful reaccreditation effort and gave us the opportunity and challenge to prove our quality and improve our processes.
Our attention to learning outcomes and focus on student success and completion have resulted in raising the bar on completion by achieving the largest graduation class in our history.
We have become more conscious that Rowan-Cabarrus’ progress impacts our region’s progress. Our completion of two North Campus buildings not only changes the programs and face of the campus, but shows all that this region is prepared and committed to the future. The relocation of our Cloverleaf Campus to larger facilities in downtown Kannapolis has helped those programs grow and has been an impetus for local revitalization. Looking ahead, we are excited to become a beacon for the future of workforce development as we plan for the advanced technology center in Cabarrus County.
This year, in support of our goal of being a catalyst for change in the community, the College’s Foundation embarked on its first ever multi-million dollar major gifts campaign which has inspired the College’s generous faculty, staff, boards, community and philanthropists to help mold the College and community’s future into one that will be more prosperous for all of us. We are nearing completion of the campaign which will add facilities to support new programs and make us more energy efficient.
Our community, state and nation have been working their way toward economic recovery yet there remains a great need for education in our community. Most jobs will require higher education after high school. To that end, our goal is to continuously increase the number of students we serve, because our citizens need the education we provide to prepare for their more prosperous futures.
I want to thank our community leaders, legislators and county commissioners who have truly partnered with the College. The level of commitment that our local leaders have provided to Rowan-Cabarrus is unprecedented and needed. It has enabled the College to build on a foundation of excellence, which will be critical in the future as well as we improve lives and our community by providing excellent public higher education and workforce development.
Today, as we reflect on the many accomplishments that are highlighted in our 2015 Annual Report, I hope that you will join me in celebrating the College’s many successes that have improved the lives of so many of our citizens in Rowan and Cabarrus County and support the College going forward to better serve the region.
Thank you for your time reading the report and for your support of the College.
This College is an unspoken hero in our community and I feel compelled to thank our faculty and staff for their tireless efforts. Rowan-Cabarrus is a part of the solution... and so are you. As the College grows, adapts and anticipates the needs of students and the community, public and private investment is crucial. Rowan-Cabarrus must improve and update programs, laboratories and equipment; develop new programs aligned with emerging labor market demands; and increase student scholarships.
2015 was a year of enormous progress for Rowan-Cabarrus Community College. Despite continuous local and state funding challenges, Rowan-Cabarrus has made the most of its limited resources. The College remains committed to its mission of building sustainable futures through the power of learning. However, the work is not done. Moving forward, I believe that Rowan-Cabarrus Community College will have an even more significant role in shaping the future of our community.
I believe that I speak for the entire Board of Trustees when I say that I am proud to have Rowan-Cabarrus at the helm, leading our community, as we navigate our collective future.
*The new statewide Comprehensive Articulation Agreement with the state universities has resulted in pre-major degrees being condensed. Additionally, the College has streamlined its degree offerings in order to better serve our students.
Spring 2015 represented the largest graduating class to-date for Rowan-Cabarrus Community College.
Over 1,250 students graduated in May 2015, ranging from age 17 to 69, with the average age being 30. The graduates received over 1,800 degrees, diplomas and certificates at the College’s fifty-first graduation ceremony.
“We are proud to celebrate 52 years of service to Rowan and Cabarrus counties. We are especially proud of the Class of 2015, the largest class of graduates in the College’s history,” said Dr. Carol S. Spalding, president of Rowan-Cabarrus Community College.
Tim Wilson, Rowan-Cabarrus alumnus and last year’s Rowan-Cabarrus Academic Excellence award winner, provided some words of wisdom from one former student to another.
“Our life lessons and experiences and, frankly, our degrees from Rowan-Cabarrus mean something. Many of you will choose to build on that degree and those experiences and continue to learn throughout your career and life. But, for me, Rowan-Cabarrus was not just a stepping stone. It was a pivotal point in my life. I would not be here today without this College and the faculty and staff who make it so amazing, and I am proud to call myself a Rowan-Cabarrus Community College alumnus,” said Tim.
After his time at Rowan-Cabarrus, Tim transferred to East Carolina University where he is pursuing a degree in hospitality management. He secured two internships with some of the most prestigious companies in his field. First, he was one of only forty students – out of over 1,400 applicants from around the country – to take part in the hospitality internship program with MGM Resorts International in Las Vegas, Nevada. Then, this past fall, Tim visited the happiest place on Earth to intern at Disney World.
Dr. Darise D. Caldwell, president of Novant Health Rowan Medical Center and Rowan-Cabarrus Community College Board of Trustees member, provided an inspirational commencement address. Dr. Caldwell’s speech centered on three important pieces of advice: do the right thing, make a difference to someone each day and know you are more capable than you think.
“The potential for greatness lives within each of you tonight. Whether your degree is in nursing, welding, or cosmetology, one thing I am sure of is that you will find yourself in a situation where you will make a difference. To the class of 2015, congratulations on what you have achieved and what you will achieve going forward,” said Caldwell.
Cabarrus County residents approved the 2014 Rowan-Cabarrus bond referendum for an Advanced Technology Center with over 64 percent of the vote. Rowan-Cabarrus Community College is continuing the effort to build the facility and educational programming that would make this a reality.
“We believe that this is the next step forward for our region – advanced technology and advanced manufacturing. An Advanced Technology Center will be a flagship to help attract employers to the region,” said President Spalding. “This will help us meet the needs of the community and bring a higher level of training to Cabarrus County, which is a big part of economic development.”
To support this effort, the College even brought national consultants in to assist in the planning efforts.
“It takes true courage to build something based upon emerging trends. Rowan-Cabarrus is lucky to have a leader like Dr. Spalding who is willing to be brave and say ‘I don’t see it happening right now, but I believe it will be true,’” said J. Craig McAtee, executive director of the National Coalition of Advanced Technology Centers (NCATC). “This will set this region’s Advanced Technology Center apart.”
Applications of advanced technology – from automated manufacturing, logistics, warehousing, 3D printing, to cyber security and information assurance – are evolving as growth areas for existing businesses, facilitating a regional culture of entrepreneurship and bringing new technology-centric companies to the area.
Supporting advanced manufacturing is one goal of the ATC, but it’s not the only way the College is supporting the fastest growing industry in the area. Thanks to the generous support of the Duke Energy Foundation, the College has aquired an additional $50,000 to support advanced technology.
Additionally, local manufacturers like Perdue Foods, S&D Coffee and Agility Fuel Systems have partnered with the Rowan and Cabarrus chambers of commerce and economic development leaders and Rowan-Cabarrus Community College to build a training program designed to prepare applicants for jobs in the high-tech and growing field of manufacturing.
The growth and popularity of these clean, high-tech jobs has led to a high demand for qualified, competent employees to fill these careers.
“Our scholarship fund, financed by local employers, ensures that we can offer this training at no cost to the individual. They also plan to hire many of the graduates,” said Craig Lamb, vice president of corporate and continuing education at Rowan-Cabarrus. “Individuals will train 20 hours per week for a total of eight weeks. Upon completion, they will be qualified for 90 percent of manufacturing jobs in our area.”
The vast majority of graduates of the new program had secured local employment prior to graduation or shortly thereafter. Details about the eight-week, 160 hour training program can be found at www.ncmanufacturinginstitute.com.
The College’s Cosmetology program received a literal makeover in 2015. Now, the part of the College that knows everything there is to know about pampering and beauty has a beautiful, renovated space to teach cosmetology, manicuring and esthetics.
The new West Avenue Center, located at 120 West Avenue in downtown Kannapolis, houses the College’s cosmetology, manicuring and esthetic programs, as well as other classes such as nurse aide and resume and interview support services for those looking for work. The new location, which was previously a Belk and a towel store, provides 28,000 square feet.
“This beautiful facility would not have been possible without the unique public-private partnerships between the City of Kannapolis, Cabarrus County and Castle & Cooke,” said Carl M. Short, chair of the College’s board of trustees. “We are excited about the new space and look forward to continued partnerships with these and other community groups.”
The College’s Cosmetology program is one of the largest and most successful in the state. The result of this move is exciting on several levels, with program expansion being number one.
“In our previous space, we had waiting lists for classes. Now, I have been able to accommodate more students and offer more courses,” said Wanda Pressley-Altman, chair of the program, including instruction on all things hair, skin and nails.
The programs also teach introduction to small business management and sociology to round out the degree.
“We are seeing more clients and students than ever,” said Pressley-Altman.
The cosmetology, manicuring and esthetics programs are also a huge benefit to the community as students need clinical hours performing actual services on clients to earn their credentials. That means the community receives wonderful services at a fraction of the cost. For instance, a haircut, shampoo and blow dry will only set you back twelve dollars, while a manicure is only six dollars (a gel polish manicure is fifteen).
“Our cosmetology program is not only widely successful, but it’s a wonderful example of our strong partnership with local high schools,” said President Spalding. “The Career & College Promise program allows approximately 70 high school students to simultaneously enroll in high school and college so that they can receive both high school and college credit for courses taken as part of the program.”
This tuition-free program for high school juniors and seniors gives them the opportunity to get a “jump start” on a two-year or four-year degree while still in high school.
A full list of the current services and pricing can be found at www.rccc.edu/cos.
College is about more than just classes and papers and exams. Or at least that’s what you’d learn if you explored the many extracurricular programs at Rowan-Cabarrus.
“College is about more than just the classes. At Rowan-Cabarrus Community College, students are encouraged to get involved in activities and organizations beyond the classroom that take their education to the next level,” said President Spalding. “It’s all about developing leaders and helping them engage in their community.”
As a part of that effort, Rowan-Cabarrus students traveled to Raleigh to voice their support for raising instructor pay, funding community colleges for year-round instruction and maintaining affordable tuition rates.
“It is so important for our students to have the opportunity to voice their concerns with their legislators. Exercising your right to vote and speaking up about what you care about is a critical part of our role as good citizens. We work hard to instill that here at Rowan-Cabarrus,” said Natasha Lipscomb, director of student life and leadership development.
During the visit, students had the opportunity to meet with their district’s legislators, attend a meeting of the N.C. House’s Education – Community Colleges Committee and be formally recognized by both chambers. In addition, student advocates launched an email campaign to their legislators and utilized social media hashtags to show their support.
“I appreciate the support the N.C. General Assembly has given community colleges. Investing in community colleges should be a priority. My community college, Rowan-Cabarrus Community College, is the most affordable, high-quality, educational choice for me and it deserves financial support so that it can continue to be just that for others,” said Tereysha Robles, 2015-16 Student Government Association President.
Students, like Tereysha, who are engaged in clubs and leadership roles have the opportunity to travel across the country to compete in competitions and learn.
For instance, Rowan-Cabarrus Community College business-minded students returned from a national conference in Chicago with numerous awards, including two first place prizes. These students from the College’s Phi Beta Lambda organization attended the conference with more than 1,600 of American’s best and brightest college students. Letitia Dennis-Boger, one of the Rowan-Cabarrus students who attended the conference, placed first in the nation in Management Concepts and first in Organizational Behavior and Leadership. She competed against students from a number of major universities.
Similarly, students in some of the College’s technical programs, such as air conditioning, heating and refrigeration (AHR), and automotive and welding, swept the state competitions and then traveled to Louisville for the 2015 SkillsUSA National Leadership and Skills Conference, only to come home with more national awards.
“The students have learned a lot about growth and development. That’s what our extracurricular activities at Rowan-Cabarrus are all about,” said Jon Crockett, instructor in the College’s Air Conditioning, Heating and Refrigeration (AHR) program and lead advisor for the AHR Chiller club and SkillsUSA initiatives. “We want them to learn things through experiences that they wouldn’t be able to really learn inside the classroom.”
While the College’s reputation in the community gives Rowan-Cabarrus credibility and respect, it is the accreditation from the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC) that ensures there is value to the degrees the College awards.
After years of ongoing work from a college-wide team, the College’s reaccreditation visit took place in September 2015. And this was no ordinary visit – this was a college-wide interview. Rowan-Cabarrus prepared for the visit thoughtfully and was pleased with a very positive outcome.
“While it was been a long and challenging road, I do believe it has been a valuable experience that has made us a much stronger institution. This process, though time-consuming, has given us the opportunity to review, update and improve our overall college operations,” said President Spalding. “I am very pleased with our report, and we should all be very proud of our accomplishments and success.”
The SACSCOC On-site Committee reported a total of only four recommendations for improvement – two for the College’s Core Standards and two related to the College’s Quality Enhancement Plan.
A Quality Enhancement Plan, or a QEP, is a campuswide initiative required by SACSCOC that focuses on improving student learning, knowledge, values or skills to enhance overall institutional quality and effectiveness. The plan launches a process that can move the institution into the future characterized by creative, engaging, and meaningful learning experiences for students.
The focus for Rowan-Cabarrus’s QEP derived from a series of surveys taken by full and part-time faculty, staff, and students aimed at discovering the areas in most need.
“When we reviewed the employee survey results, career readiness was overwhelming identified as the area they felt our students needed the most guidance,” said Donna Helget, English instructor and chair of the Rowan-Cabarrus Community College QEP committee.
Ultimately supporting this goal, the College has developed four different options – or connections – for students to take advantage of along a path to choosing a specific career.
“We know that students who come to Rowan-Cabarrus with a clear career goal in mind are more likely to complete their educational journey with us successfully and in a timely fashion. Our goal with this project is to help more students explore potential career paths and determine their end goal sooner rather than later,” said Dr. Michael Quillen, vice president of academic programs.
One of the most exciting expansions that the College has experienced in recent years is the growth in the tuition-free courses offered to high school juniors and seniors.
The Career and College Promise tuition-free program for high school juniors and seniors gives them the opportunity to get a “jump start” on a two-year or four-year degree while still in high school.
“This is a fantastic program. It allows students to simultaneously enroll in high school and college so that they can receive both high school and college credit for courses taken as part of the program,” said Cyndie Mynatt, vice chair of the College’s board of trustees.
Unlike the early college high school programs, Career and College Promise allows students to remain very involved in their current high school. They can still play sports and engage in all of the regular extracurricular activities, while taking college and high school courses simultaneously.
“The college transfer classes are truly an alternative to advanced placement – they are weighted just like honors classes,” said Dr. Michael Quillen, vice president of academic programs. “Unlike advanced placement courses that are taught locally and tested for credit nationally, students who pass the course with a C or better are guaranteed full college credit.”
There are two tracks for the Career & College Promise program – one allows students to specialize in a career or technical pathway, while the other allows students to prepare for general transfer onto a four-year college or university.
“The other perk of this opportunity is getting to experience real college classes – students ultimately feel better prepared when they head off to a four-year college or university because they’re already confident in their ability to do college work,” said Quillen.
In addition to the college transfer classes, Rowan-Cabarrus offers options for students to get a head start in careers like fire protection, criminal justice, machining, cosmetology, web technologies, welding and more.
Students can take as many classes as their high school will allow with some students taking as many as four college classes in a single semester.
Over the last few years, the College has improved its offerings by providing dedicated classes and sections that fall within the high school schedule in both counties.
“We look forward to seeing further expansion in this area as more parents and students become aware of what very well may be the best kept secret to getting ahead while still in high school,” said President Spalding.
In addition to the aspect of the program that allows high school students to remain enrolled at their current high school, the College also has two early college high school programs. These popular, prestigious high school/college programs allow students to earn a high school diploma and up to two years of college credit or an associate degree. Many graduates of these successful programs go on to earn significant scholarships and transfer on to highly respected four-year universities.
The College is currently working on an additional partnership with Cabarrus County Schools that would place a third early college program at the College’s Cabarrus Business and Technology Center (CBTC) in the fall of 2016.
Healthcare is a dynamic and ever-evolving field, meaning healthcare education has to constantly adapt to new methods, trends and techniques.
Today’s growing population of aging Americans, and individuals with disabilities or other chronic conditions, is outpacing the number of workers with the knowledge and skills to effectively care for them. Like other regions across the country, Rowan and Cabarrus counties face a shortage of certified healthcare professionals.
2015 brought several exciting developments for healthcare education at the College, including the first health symposium, bringing together local healthcare educators, workers and employers to discuss some of the most challenging topics in the field. Additionally, the College neared completion of the North Campus additions and renovations projects, a key component of which was Building 600’s new additional square footage and renovations to the healthcare classrooms. Dental assisting and radiography are now fully up-to-date, and the new programs-in-development, occupational therapy assistant and physical therapy assistant, are ready for new equipment and faculty to get started.
Also, the Rowan-Cabarrus Community College Foundation was honored to receive a $40,000 donation from Novant Health and proud to announce that the nursing skills lab at the College’s North Carolina Research Campus facility will be named in recognition of Novant’s contribution to the Building A More Prosperous Community major gifts campaign.
“Novant Health has always been a strong proponent of the College,” said President Spalding. “Novant Health understands how much education means to the healthcare system.”
The donation to the College’s Foundation is comprised of five separate $8,000 donations from Novant Health Rowan Medical Center, Novant Health Presbyterian Medical Center, Novant Health Huntersville Medical Center, Novant Health Matthews Medical Center and Novant Health Mint Hill Medical Center.
“At Novant Health, we believe that the future of healthcare is based on well-educated students,” said Dr. Dari Caldwell, president of Novant Health Rowan Medical Center. “Rowan-Cabarrus Community College healthcare programs have a well-documented track record of success in both student performance and program recognition. We are proud to support the College in developing our local healthcare workforce, and share in their desire to train the most qualified candidates.”
On top of the stellar donation from Novant, the College was also awarded a $300,000 challenge grant from The Leon Levine Foundation for the support of healthcare education.
“We are excited to partner with an organization committed to a mission so close to the vision of our founder,” said Tom Lawrence, executive director of The Leon Levine Foundation. “We are extremely pleased to award this challenge grant to Rowan-Cabarrus Community College. We are optimistic that our challenge will make a greater case for Rowan and Cabarrus residents and companies to support the College. Our intent is for this grant to help the Foundation reach their goal.”
The Novant donation, and others made by local philanthropists and companies, will help the College to meet the $1.2 million goal for healthcare education donations.
“We are grateful to The Leon Levine Foundation for an incredible opportunity to continue to grow the College’s efforts to train our healthcare workforce through this challenge grant. We are thankful to our donors for being a part of the movement that helps provide support for updating programs, laboratories and equipment; developing new programs aligned with emerging labor market demands; and increasing student scholarships,” said Edward Norvell, Rowan County resident, attorney and co-chair of the College’s campaign.
As part of the College’s annual celebration of scholarship recipients, hundreds of local leaders filled a ballroom at the Embassy Suites Concord Resort to recognize the impact of scholarships on the 2015 Rowan-Cabarrus Community College scholarship recipients.
“It was apparent to all those in attendance that a scholarship is the gift of education, a gift whose impact is far reaching and continues giving throughout one’s life and career,” said Dr. Kelly Propst, assistant superintendent of Cabarrus County Schools and co-chair of the 2015 luncheon.
In total, the 2015 Changing Lives Scholarship Luncheon generated an additional $79,000 for future scholarship recipients, adding to the significant number of scholarships in place at the College’s Foundation. Additionally, the Foundation has received over $254,000 in matching funds to create an unrestricted endowment through the Strengthening Institutions Program Title III grant received by the College in 2011.
“Students and graduates of Rowan-Cabarrus Community College remain in our community, contributing to the advancement of not only their own lives and the lives of their families, but to the betterment of our community as a whole,” said Starling Johnson, corporate sales manager at Johnson Concrete Company and co-chair of the 2015 luncheon. “The beauty of the scholarship luncheon is not only the heartwarming and altruistic nature of the event, but the impact that a scholarship has on the fabric of the larger community.”
The Changing Lives Scholarship Luncheon is a project of the Rowan-Cabarrus Community College Foundation, its board of directors, the staff of Rowan-Cabarrus Community College, the students and the community.
“This event truly is a highlight of the year,” said Foundation board chair Paul Brown. “Residents of both Cabarrus and Rowan counties come together to support a worthwhile effort that has such a positive impact on the future of our region.”
Newly endowed scholarships and their donors were recognized at the luncheon for making such important contributions to the education of our students.
“We support students from all walks of life,” said Carla Howell, chief officer of governance, foundation, and public relations. “Many of our scholarship recipients thought the word ‘scholarship’ meant funds reserved for high grade point averages. The Rowan-Cabarrus Foundation awards scholarships based on need and the desire to achieve.”
Special thanks go to the 2015 table hosts and to Dr. Kelly Propst and Starling Johnson for co-chairing the Changing Lives Scholarship Luncheon, and to Well Fargo for their sponsorship of the luncheon.
The Foundation has a 25 member Board of Directors and provides funding for:
2015 was a dynamic year for the Rowan-Cabarrus Community College Foundation. The College has continued to rely on the Foundation as a crucial vehicle to achieving major new initiatives, propelling the College forward.
It remains certain that public support for the College from tax dollars will continue to diminish year after year, making new program development and forward movement difficult without private investment. In an effort to combat this outlook, Rowan-Cabarrus launched the Building a More Prosperous Community major gifts campaign in spring of 2014. The campaign brought a new and exciting chapter for the Foundation as the first large scale, multi-million dollar fundraising campaign in the 50-year history of the College.
“The College must seek private dollars to meet our goals,” said William Cannon, Jr., Cabarrus County resident and president of The Cannon Foundation. Cannon also serves as co-chair of the College’s campaign along with community leaders from both counties who are spearheading the effort to raise these funds. “We want to invest in new programs and modern technology, ultimately training students on real world equipment so they are ready for employment upon graduation.”
This year, Rowan-Cabarrus Community College was proud to announce the public launch of Building a More Prosperous Community.
“We are asking for support – not for things that the College needs, but what we believe the community needs,” said Edward Norvell, Rowan County resident, attorney and co-chair of the College’s campaign.
The campaign, with a total goal of raising $7.1 million, is centered on four key initiatives that address specific needs for the College, including a new advanced technology center, healthcare education, an outdoor learning and amphitheater space, and STEAM scholarships for students pursuing science, technology, engineering, art and mathematics.
“We have been overwhelmed with the support we have already received from this region,” said President Spalding. “While we are excited to report that we have raised over $5.5 million for this campaign – nearly 80 percent – we still need further support to reach our goal. I know I can count on our community members and alumni to join us in meeting this goal.”
In addition to the four main initiatives, the College is also seeking funds for two additional special projects – a solar energy investment, and the expansion of the world class Fire & Emergency Services Training Facility.
Making a charitable gift to the Building a More Prosperous Community Major Gifts Campaign is an important and personal decision. An investment in the lives of individuals, businesses and organizations that benefit from the College’s excellent educational programs, short-term training and services is satisfying and has long-range implications for the local economy.
“The Rowan-Cabarrus Community College Foundation resources support the mission of the College and are channeled into scholarships and other student assistance, support for academic programming and capital needs, and other needs of the College and the local community,” said Carla Howell, chief officer of governance, foundation and public relations.
In addition to the public launch of the major gifts campaign, the Foundation experienced many highlights in 2015 including the seventh annual Rowan-Cabarrus Community College Foundation Golf Classic, which raised more than $23,000 for the Foundation. The Foundation also awarded numerous grants to College faculty and staff who use them to impact students, and assisted over 100 students with special emergency financial needs.
Technology is best appreciated when it enhances your learning experience and adds value to a presentation. Rowan-Cabarrus Community College has embraced the need for technology to support our mission and help students, faculty and staff work smarter, not harder.
To that end, the College was pleased to be named as one of the 2014-2015 Top Ten Digital Community Colleges by the Center for Digital Education.
“We are honored and proud to have made the prestigious list of honorees. As a new president, I realized that we needed an overhaul of our information technology infrastructure,” said President Spalding. “We have made information technology a priority here at Rowan-Cabarrus.”
Through the generous support of the Cannon Foundation, Inc., the Charles A. Cannon Charitable Trusts, and the Mariam and Robert Hayes Charitable Trust, the College was able to substantially improve the College’s information technology systems beginning in 2009.
“We were happy to help the College rebuild its information technology infrastructure,” said William Cannon, president of The Cannon Foundation. “We are always looking to invest in initiatives that can support lasting changes and it is rewarding to see the significant difference it has made in the College’s ability to serve students.”
Rowan-Cabarrus has made great advances for students, most recently this year, with the launch of the Rowan-Cabarrus mobile app. The mobile app highlights key features that allow students to register for classes and view course schedules.
“Students can now view their entire course load along with detailed descriptions of each class, check their final grades on the go, access Blackboard and even get personalized notifications regarding any holds on their student account,” said Ken Ingle, chief information officer for the College.
Additionally, the College rolled out a new feature on the students’ registration system that allows students to plan their entire path to graduation online. This planning helps improve their ability to forecast which classes they need to take and how close they are to achieving their degree, diploma or certificate. And, students’ itemized tuition bills are now easily accessible through the same platform.
Online tutoring for students is available in many subjects 24 hours a day and seven days a week, as is the College’s IT help desk, through a partnership with Blackboard. Other digital initiatives include introducing online textbooks to many of the College’s core and elective classes, online job preparation and searching resources, social media and electronic emergency notifications systems.
The College is also continuing their efforts in their ever-expanding courses offered online. In 2015, 54 percent of courses that the College offered were online or hybrid (mostly online with few on-campus classes), and 36 percent of all courses were completely online.
In 2009, Rowan-Cabarrus fully embraced the arts on campus with the introduction of the Associate in Fine Arts (AFA) degree program. This transferrable degree program aligns with the curriculum at four-year colleges and universities with bachelors in fine arts degrees. Additionally, in 2014, the College also introduced an Associate in Applied Science degree in Advertising and Graphic Design, in response to the rapid growth of graphic design and the tremendous opportunities in corporate design departments, advertising agencies, design firms, newspapers, and magazines.
In addition to the personal rewards of self-expression, creative exploration and learning the technical skills involved with fine arts, there are many career options for the fine artist. Graduates from these programs could find careers as a graphic designer, photojournalist, art director, museum curator, or theatre/set designer.
These programs also offer numerous opportunities for students including two student art exhibitions per year; an active student chorus; internship or work-based learning opportunities in the creative industries; field trips to museums, performances, and four-year universities; professional artist lectures; and one-on-one advising with career, transfer, and creative goals.
In addition to course offerings, the College has continued to embrace the fine arts across its campuses. Rowan-Cabarrus has hosted at least one – if not two – sculptures on campus as part of the annual Salisbury Sculpture Show. Excitingly, in 2015, “Under the Maple Seeds,” by the College’s very own adjunct instructor Stephen Hayes, took top honors in the 2015 Salisbury Sculpture Show (on display at Livingstone College).
The College also hosted another one of Hayes’ work on North Campus. That piece was designed to represent the wind beneath the leaf, as the supporting faculty and services that the College provides to help students find their way and stay afloat.
“The arts enhance and enrich our community. In fact, we are lucky to live in a vibrant community that embraces the arts. The ability for our students to communicate articulately using words, images and sounds is vitally important to their future success. We believe that a complete education includes exposure and integration of the arts and offers specialized arts training,” said Carl M. Short, chair of the College’s board of trustees.
Additionally, as part of the College’s major fundraising campaign, scholarships that not only support STEM (science, technology, engineering and mathematics) programs, but also those that support the fine arts have been solicited. Rowan-Cabarrus is seeking support for STEAM scholarships for students pursuing careers in science, technology, engineering, fine arts and mathematics.
Rowan-Cabarrus Community College has long been a great place for students to acquire a transferable two-year associate degree. Many students earn these degrees and transfer to any number of public or private colleges or universities.
Making the transfer process seamless and painless for students has become a big focus for the College.
In 2014, the North Carolina university and community college systems developed a comprehensive articulation agreement to improve the transfer process and clarify it for students. Similarly, a group of independent colleges followed suit, including Pfeiffer University and Livingstone College.
Still, specialized programs remain outside of these agreements, which is what prompted Rowan-Cabarrus to begin working with UNC Charlotte to ensure that Rowan-Cabarrus Associate in Fine Arts (AFA) students would be able to transfer with ease along with their peers. Thanks to a strategic use of the College’s advisory board structure, the AFA program already had strong relationships with the faculty and advisors in the UNC Charlotte Department of Art & Art History.
“This is Rowan-Cabarrus Community College’s first articulation agreement with UNC Charlotte, besides the comprehensive agreement between all NC community colleges and the sixteen state universities,” said President Spalding. “Articulation agreements are complex and require a lot of work on both sides. I applaud our faculty for their leadership in making our AFA students a priority and ensuring their ability to transfer.”
Rowan-Cabarrus worked with UNC Charlotte to review every single relevant syllabus, student learning outcomes and a full review of how Rowan-Cabarrus teaches each course.
“It is with great enthusiasm that we partner with UNC Charlotte in this way. Together, we are paving the way to help more potential fine arts students meet their educational goals by easily being able to move to the baccalaureate level,” said Jenn Selby, program chair for the College’s Department of Fine & Applied Arts.
Ultimately, the hard work paid off and Rowan-Cabarrus was able to partner with UNC Charlotte to offer a formal bilateral articulation agreement for AFA graduates to enter four BFA-tract concentrations in the Department of Art & Art History, which includes concentrations in digital media, painting, photography and sculpture.
“We have long been strong partners with Rowan-Cabarrus Community College and this agreement strengthens this important relationship, said UNC Charlotte Provost and Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs Joan F. Lorden. “Rowan-Cabarrus Community College is responsible for the second largest number of transfers to UNC Charlotte and we look forward to growing this longstanding relationship that provides affordable higher education to the citizens of the Charlotte region.”
The College is currently working on other similar agreements with other local transfer institutions. For instance, the College offers a RN-to-BSN transfer program with UNC Greensboro.
“Preparing students for transfer has become one of Rowan-Cabarrus Community College’s greatest strengths. It helps us build a better-educated, career-ready workforce for our region,” said President Spalding. “We help students get ready to apply and succeed at any college, anywhere. Choosing a destination with a Rowan-Cabarrus articulation agreement paves the way for the smoothest, most cost-effective transition.”
Community colleges have long been known for being some of the most responsive government entities in existence, quickly changing and responding to their community’s needs. Similarly, Rowan-Cabarrus has worked hard to plan thoughtfully with respect to the future.
“Without a crystal ball to tell you the future, community colleges must do their best to forecast what careers will be available locally in the next five to ten years,” said President Spalding.
As part of this exercise, the College is developing new programs and expanding into new fields, including:
In addition, the College has also expanded and continued to improve our online course offerings. In fact, Rowan-Cabarrus offers nine degrees that you can complete entirely online, including the transferable two-year Associate in Arts and Associate in Science degrees – not to mention the seven diplomas and 43 certificates students can earn entirely online. The College’s online courses and online faculty have won national awards and undergo a rigorous training and review process to ensure they are ready for students.
Rowan-Cabarrus became a National Center of Academic Excellence in Cyber Defense Two-Year Education (CAE2Y), a feat that establishes the College as one of the nation’s academic trailblazers in the area of cybersecurity.
Jointly sponsored by the National Security Agency (NSA) and the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), the CAE2Y program recognizes colleges and universities that have made significant contributions in meeting the national demand for cyber defense education.
“The CAE2Y program is designed to prepare our students to meet the nation’s cybersecurity needs, keep the talent pipeline primed, share expertise and serve as vehicles for growth,” said Zackary Hubbard, program chair for the College’s Computer Technology Integration program. “Our security program was heavily vetted by the NSA and they were particularly happy with our work to secure articulation agreements with four-year institutions such Catawba College.”
Currently, only a small number of educational institutions nationwide have this specific designation, and Rowan-Cabarrus is one of only two community colleges in North Carolina.
The College’s ongoing curricula development, to include specializations in cyber security, cybercrime and networking technologies, contributed to earning this accreditation. Rowan-Cabarrus currently offers two specializations in the information assurance and cyber defense area: Cyber Crime & Digital Forensics and Cyber Security. Under each specialization, students also have the availability to earn certificates by completing the required courses in each area.
The prestigious CAE2Y program will also give Rowan-Cabarrus students eligibility for internship placement assistance from the NSA and DHS, field trips, experiences with the agencies and more.
The Rowan-Cabarrus Student Ambassador Program is a group of outstanding students who are selected to represent the College in multiple capacities. The program is supported by the Rowan-Cabarrus Community College Foundation. Student ambassadors earn a scholarship for their service to the College. These student leaders reach out to prospective students, conduct campus tours, participate in and help promote various college events and assist with the successful transition of students to the campus.
“I’m very proud of the Rowan-Cabarrus Student Ambassador Program and this year’s new group of leaders,” said President Spalding. “We believe that developing our students into community leaders and active citizens is a part of our job at the College. These students will definitely leave Rowan-Cabarrus equipped to lead in their careers and communities.”
The 2015-16 Rowan-Cabarrus Student Ambassadors include:
Student Ambassadors are dedicated to student success, diversity and strengthening student connections. Ambassadors enjoy working with people, are committed to creating change in their respective communities, and are excited about sharing their experiences at Rowan-Cabarrus with others.
More than 150 students graduated from Rowan-Cabarrus with their high school equivalency diplomas
“The high school equivalency test opens the door to college and better jobs. It gives the graduates the respect they deserve, and the satisfaction of earning a high school credential with the hope that they will continue with their education,” said Gary Connor, executive director of the Rowan-Cabarrus Pre-College Studies programs.
Graduates ranged in age from 16 to 77, with an average age of 27 years. Forty-nine percent of the graduates live in Rowan County and 51 percent in Cabarrus County, with 64 percent female and 36 percent male. Further, among these graduates, 36 percent move directly into a post-secondary degree, certificate or diploma program at Rowan-Cabarrus, up from 18 percent just two years ago.
Rowan-Cabarrus provides both instruction and resource materials to students preparing for the High School Equivalency at no cost. Classes are scheduled on the North and South Campuses and at a variety of community locations for convenience and access.
“Our goal is to bring education to the students. It’s our ‘meet them where they are’ philosophy,” said President Spalding. “While it’s not possible for every program, our overarching goal is to be available and accessible to students. That’s why our students can now earn numerous degrees completely online. It’s why the high school equivalency classes are offered morning, afternoon, evening, online and at multiple locations across the College’s service area.”
Students are given an assessment test upon entering the program, from which an individualized learning plan is developed just for that student. This identifies the area(s) the student needs work in and sets a clear pathway to successfully passing the high school equivalency exams.
Rowan-Cabarrus Community College was proud to host its fourth annual STEM Open House at the College’s North Carolina Research Campus (NCRC) in Kannapolis.
“The STEM Open House is a true celebration of science, technology, engineering and math,” said President Spalding. “I fully believe that everyone should be interested in STEM – and that it’s critical that we embrace these subjects. America used to be the leader in technology and innovation. It’s time for us to reclaim that role.”
Over 750 members of the community visited the STEM Open House, a fun, interactive event for the community showcasing the College’s science, technology, engineering and math programs.
The College hosted dozens of exhibits for kids and adults of all ages to spark the senses and stir curiosity for all things STEM. Attendees were able to make their own rocket, talk with a real SWAT team, climb aboard a real fire truck, and even engage in activities involving sculpture and crime scene forensics that created fun products by applying scientific and engineering principles in collaboration with technology and mathematics.
“Our exhibits show that science is friendly, approachable and fun,” said Dr. Carol A. Scherczinger, dean of the College’s science, biotechnology, mathematics and information technologies programs. “Research has shown that opinions toward STEM subjects are formed early. Our purpose is two-fold: to recruit students to the College and also to offer a public service by providing opportunities to make STEM enjoyable and approachable.”
The exhibits were extremely diverse – visitors tested their skin for germs and learned about DNA extraction, the complexity of balancing pH in dying hair and the science of firefighting.
“Holding this event at the College’s NCRC facility makes a lot of sense. The NCRC building is the home of the biotechnology and nursing programs – two of the most STEM intensive curricula,” said Cyndie Mynatt, vice chair of the College’s board of trustees.
The STEM Open House was held in conjunction with the statewide NC Science Festival, focused on engaging younger generations in science. Events across the state were designed to bring science to life for students and their parents.
Each year, the College undergoes an extensive and rigorous process to evaluate the best instructors. In 2015, the College’s Outstanding Excellence in Teaching Awards were awarded to Jade Bittle, full-time English instructor, and Aimee Durham, part-time Computer Technology Integration instructor.
Jade Bittle holds three bachelor’s degrees from Lenoir-Rhyne University in English, Communications and Education as well as a master’s degree from Gardner-Webb University. Jade is committed to seeing all of her students succeed and ensures that she is giving them the optimal combination of support and instruction.
“My favorite thing about teaching is when I see students work through an academic concept and master it,” said Jade. “I understand that our students need to be pushed, motivated, and need resources provided to them – and that should be our role as instructors. I am just as much of a cheerleader and motivator as I am a teacher.”
Aimee Durham possesses a bachelor’s degree in Information Systems from Catawba College and a master’s degree from East Carolina University. Since receiving the award as a part-time faculty member, Aimee has been hired by the College as a full-time faculty member.
“We are very proud of these two instructors for the commitment they have made to our community and our students,” said Carl M. Short, chair of the College’s board of trustees.
In 2011, the College was awarded a five-year $1.8 million grant from the U.S. Department of Education for the purpose of strengthening the College by building retention and persistence rates.
Since then, Rowan-Cabarrus has used the grant to establish Academic and Career Advising (ACA) Centers on both North and South Campus.
“While many factors impact retention, persistence, and graduation rates outside of ACA Center activities, we are focused on making the greatest impact toward the good of the student through the activities provided by the Center,” said President Spalding. “Students feel positive about the various programmatic offerings, indicating that they are helpful and that they would refer their friends to the Center.”
Nearing the completion of the grant, the College is reflecting on its successes and future plans.
“I am proud that we have a strong team of advisors that serve students well,” said Marcia Miller, director of the ACA Centers and Title III activity director at the College. “At the beginning of the grant, our baseline student enrollment was 6,100 students. Each year, we were supposed to see 10 percent of our student population. So, in year one we were expected to see 600 students, 1,200 in year two, 1,800 in year three and so on. We actually hit our five year goal in year three and in 2015, year four, we saw approximately 5,500 students.”
The benefits of this more comprehensive advising approach have been seen throughout the College.
“This grant was not just for the advising centers, but for the College as a whole,” said Miller. “Everything we do is oriented to strengthen Rowan-Cabarrus Community College. By continuing to look for ways to partner with academic programs, we continue to strengthen the College.”
Title III funds will continue to support advising services, including supporting faculty advising efforts.
The purpose of the Rowan-Cabarrus Community College Foundation is to raise and manage funds, and enhance relationships that support the work of the College.
Thank you to the following individuals, corporations, foundations and organizations for contributing to the Rowan-Cabarrus Foundation from January 1, 2015 to December 31, 2015.
Families, friends and businesses honor and memorialize individuals, corporations and students through endowed gifts to the Foundation. Endowments are established and invested with a minimum gift of $15,000 and are permanent funding sources for programs, scholarships and other financial assistance. These funds provide the annual earnings to support these awards.
Ralph W. Ketner Family Endowed Scholarship
Philip Morris USA Endowed Scholarship
RCCC General Endowed Scholarship Fund
Title III Endowed Fund
Benson/DeBerry Memorial Endowed Fund for Academic Excellence
Food Lion Endowed Scholarship
Dr. Richard L. Brownell Endowment Fund
Ervin W. and Miriam R. McCulloch Endowed Scholarship Fund
Edith Walker Estate Memorial Endowed Scholarship
AkzoNobel Corporation Endowed Scholarship
Dean R. and Betty I. Andrews Endowed Scholarship
Evelyn Kenerly Germann and William Joseph Germann Memorial Endowed Scholarship
Dai Nippon Endowed Scholarship
Edward and Susan Norvell Scholarship Endowment
Cabarrus Rescue Squad Endowed Scholarship
Lane C. Drye Memorial Endowed Scholarship
Susan Elaine Harrison Memorial Endowed Nursing Scholarship
The Salisbury Lions Club Clyde H. Harris Memorial Endowed Scholarship
Student Emergency Scholarship Endowment
Susan J. and Robert M. Smith Endowment
Waddell Professional Development Fund
Walter Almeida Endowed Scholarship
Brown Family Fire Protection Technology Endowed Scholarship
Dr. Jarrett T. Chandler, Jr. Endowed Scholarship
Michael Chreitzberg Endowed Scholarship
Edna J. Chrin Memorial Scholarship
Larry Cloninger Family Endowed Scholarship
Helen B. Earnhardt Memorial Scholarship
Rachel B. Gaskey Memorial Scholarship
Carla G. Howell Endowed Scholarship
Sam R. and Louise May Endowed Scholarship
Jeanie H. Moore Endowed Scholarship
Graham Spencer Endowed Scholarship
Ben Mynatt Memorial Scholarship
Rowan-Cabarrus Community College Student Emergency Scholarship Fund
William and Nancy Stanback Scholarship Endowment
C.C. Erwin Memorial Endowed Scholarship
China Grove Civitan Memorial Endowed Scholarship
Michael A. Johnson Scholarship
Concord Rotary Club Endowed Scholarship
Draft and Design Endowed Scholarship
Richmond Gage Memorial Endowed Scholarship Fund
Clyde H. Harriss Family Memorial Endowed Scholarship
Eddie Myers Memorial Endowed Scholarship
National Tool and Machinery Endowed Scholarship
C. T. Overton Endowed Scholarship
STEAM Endowed Scholarship
Gifts of $1,500 or more may create a named scholarship or program fund. Contributions at this level offer the financial support for successful completion of a certificate, diploma or degree. Program funds provide enhancements to the classroom and learning experience.
The Margaret C. Woodson Foundation: Annual scholarships and emergency funds – $40,000
NCCCS (sponsored by NC Space Grant & NASA): 15/16 Sub-Orbital Unmanned Space Flight Testing Grant Funding for students to design, engineer, test fly and recover a helium balloon to the edge of space – $22,852
NCCCS (Minority Male Mentoring Program): Funding to support for the Minority Leadership Academy - $17,608
The Cannon Foundation, Inc./Cannon Trusts: Funding to support capital improvements to North and South campus – $250,000
Weyerhaeuser Giving Fund: STEM Scholarships – $2,000
Salisbury-Rowan County Convention and Visitors Bureau: Funding to support the 2016 NCCC Fine Arts Conference: What's Now! Creative responses to current challenges – $2,000
U.S. Dept. of Education: 2015/16 Carl D. Perkins Career and Technical Education Act Grant - Funding for career and technical education in student services and curriculum – $328,238
NCCCS (NC Works Career Pathway): Grant for high school to community college Career Pathways - $35,000
Foundation for the Carolinas (Cabarrus County Community Foundation): Grant for healthcare education and wellness activities/equipment - $3,000
National Science Foundation (NSF): Grant for assistance in applying for a 2016 NSF Advanced Technology Education grant – funds for travel and technical assistance – ~$2,400
Rowan Arts Council: Matching funds to support National Endowment for the Arts federal grant application currently pending - $3,000
U.S. Dept. of Education: 2015/16 Title III Funding Grant - Funding for improving student retention and graduation rates through targeted intervention - $394,053
Total for 2015: $1,100,151
We would like to express appreciation to:
Funds appropriated by the State of North Carolina support most College operations. State tuition from all of the 58 community colleges is pooled at the state level and used to fund a portion of each college’s state budget allocations. Curriculum tuition rates are set by the North Carolina General Assembly. The College’s tuition rates increased to $76 per credit hour for in-state tuition and $268 per credit hour for out-of-state tuition effective for the spring 2016 semester. This increase represents an increase of $4.00 per credit hour from the previous fiscal year. While community college tuition rates in North Carolina remain low when compared to other states, rates have increased by almost 45 percent since 2009-2010.
State budget appropriations are based on the previous year’s full-time equivalent (FTE) enrollments. In Fiscal 2014-2015 Rowan-Cabarrus was funded for a total of 6,362 budget FTE for the students enrolled in curriculum, continuing education and basic skills during the 2013-2014 academic year. The College’s Financial Statements for the year ending June 30, 2015, report operating and non-operating revenues totaling $63,829,985. This includes state current aid of $29,821,987 and $717,572 for state capital aid. County current appropriations for the year totaled $4,040,049 while county capital aid was $7,470,822. The remaining revenue was from grants, donations, sales and services receipts and student financial aid monies that are pass-through dollars to the student. Additionally, the total revenue figure includes $3,658,805 in student tuition and fees, but it is important to note that state tuition monies are remitted to the state and not kept by the College. The College continued capital projects at multiple campuses in both counties during the year utilizing state capital dollars, Rowan County bond dollars and special capital appropriated funds from both counties to fund critically important renovation and construction projects. North Carolina community colleges operate on a cash basis accounting system with fiscal year end at June 30. Revenues may exceed expenditures when monies received for grants, financial aid awards and other institutionally funded activities are received before June 30, but expenditures are recorded after the end of the fiscal year.
In Fiscal 2014-2015, the College helped 5,470 students receive financial aid totaling $33.6 million. The aid included $1.4 million in scholarships, grants and other forms of agency, state, and federal aid, as well as $15.7 million in Pell grants and $16.5 million in loans. An economic impact study completed in 2014 by Economic Modeling Specialists International, indicates that the annual impact of Rowan-Cabarrus alumni in 2012-2013 was more than $234 million in added income within Rowan and Cabarrus counties.
The statement of net position reflects the overall financial position of the College at a given point in time. In Fiscal 2014-2015, the College’s total assets grew by almost 10 percent while total liabilities increased by 8.9 percent, and the College’s total net position increased by almost 17 percent. The increase in net position is primarily due to an overall increase in construction in progress and capital assets resulting from continuing capital improvements in both counties.
Jonathan S. Chamberlain, B.B.C. Chief Officer of Facilities Services
Tina M. Haynes, M.S. Chief Officer of Human Resources and Organizational Effectiveness
Carla G. Howell, A.A.S. Chief Officer of Governance, Foundation & Public Relations
Ken G. Ingle, M.S. Chief Information Officer
Craig R. Lamb, M.A. Vice President of Corporate & Continuing Education
Gaye N. McConnell, M.A. Vice President of Enrollment & Student Experience
Michael D. Quillen Vice President of Academic Programs
Janet N. Spriggs, M.S. Chief Financial Officer
Rowan-Cabarrus Community College improves lives and builds community through public higher education and workforce development.
Rowan-Cabarrus Community College is an open-door, comprehensive learning-centered institution of higher education serving the citizens of Rowan and Cabarrus counties. The College, a member of the North Carolina Community College System, offers affordable occupational and education programs leading to Associate in Arts Degree, Associate in Science Degree, Associate in Fine Arts Degree, Associate in General Education Degree, and Associate in Applied Science Degrees. Diplomas and certificates are awarded for other occupational, adult and continuing education programs. The primary focus of the College’s offerings is on workforce development by meeting the educational needs of the individual and meeting the changing training requirements of business and industrial firms as well as other employers in the service area.
Reflecting its commitment to student learning outcomes, the College strives to inspire its students to increase their knowledge, develop occupational and technical proficiencies, respond to lifelong learning opportunities, and increase their awareness as responsible citizens in a democratic society.
Building sustainable futures through the power of learning.
Excellence and innovation in education and workforce training
Continuous improvement through lifelong learning and achievement
Trust, integrity, inclusiveness, and mutual respect
Exemplary service through team work
Responsibility, sustainability and accountability
Relationships, teamwork, and global citizenship