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Re-Employment Bridge Institute Announces Dates for 2012 Best Practices Conference

Mark your calendars! The Re-Employment Bridge Institute (RBI) has announced the dates for its 2nd Annual best practices conference titled Bridging Business and Workforce Development. This exciting conference will be held on Thursday June 7 – Friday June 8, 2012 at the Embassy Suites Conference Center in Concord.

The focus of the upcoming conference is to being together private business with workforce professionals who provide services to displaced workers, the unemployed and the underemployed in response to the identified needs of business. Opportunities will be afforded to participants to remain current on innovative initiatives, idea exchange, and networking with colleagues.

Anyone who is interested in learning best practices in bridging the needs of business with workforce development is welcome to attend! The 2011 Conference had over 300 attendees from all over the nation come together to network and discuss best practices. The positive response from those that attended the event was overwhelming and many left demanding another conference for 2012. So don’t miss this chance. Mark your calendar today!

The Re-Employment Bridge Institute is also seeking proposals for concurrent session workshop presentations at the June 7-8, 2012 conference. Priority will be given to proposals which focus on how to create, implement, and evaluate programs and services which meet identified needs of business and, thereby, provide improved services to the unemployed and under employed. And remember, each workshop MUST have a business partner(s) as part of the presentation team. A workshop proposal form can be accessed by clicking here. For more information on submitting a proposal for a workshop please contact Erin Ploplis at (704) 216-7202 or by e-mail at erin.ploplis@rccc.edu or at www.remploymentbridge.com.

The RBI is a teaching/learning institute based in Kannapolis and is funded by a two-year grant from the Centralina Workforce Development Board and the NC Department of Commerce. The Re-Employment Bridge Institute has enrolled over 1,000 business and workforce development professionals through its initial conference, workshop series and community-based consultations. The RBI is committed to sharing best practices among workforce professionals especially in addressing the needs of business.

The Centralina Workforce Development Board was a partner for the 2011 conference and is proud to be a partner again for the 2012 event. Please continue to look to the Centralina WDB monthly E-Newsletter for updates on this exciting conference in our region and for information on how to register. For more information on the 2012 Re-Employment Bridge Institute Conference or on the Centralina Workforce Development Board, please contact Emily Clamp at (704) 348-2732 or by e-mail at eclamp@centralina.org.

Allied Health Students Prep for Real Life Experiences

Stanly Community College Upgrades Simulation Laboratory

Allied Health students at Stanly Community College (SCC) have the opportunity to experience realistic hospital situations without leaving the campus. This is possible thanks to the college’s Allied Health Simulation Laboratory (Sim Lab). Stanly CC’s Sim Lab includes sections designed to resemble hospital rooms, and they house lifelike mannequins, both adult and infants.

Students in programs such as Respiratory Therapy, Nursing and Medical Assisting can monitor these “patients” clinical signs, such as pulse and respiration. The mannequins blink and breathe and can even cry and respond to treatment. Instructors monitor their students both in the medical bays and through a one-way mirror.

According to Stanly CC’s Dean of Health and Human Services Tammy Crump, the Sim Lab gives students an invaluable experience.

“It gives them the real, live patient atmosphere and the opportunity to make mistakes in a simulated atmosphere and learn from them,” Crump said. “It really helps them practice real world simulations.”

The lifelike qualities of the mannequins teaches the students to pay attention to their patients, Crump said. “They’re learning good patient care,” she said.

The Sim Lab has been a part of Stanly Community College for a few years, but it received some upgrades last year.

“Now we’ve got a room set up like an ICU, and we added a birthing room that is set up just like a birthing room at the hospital,” Crump said.

Students who spend time learning in the Sim Lab can count their hours there as clinical time because of the realism of the Sim Lab.

“Every student gets the same kind of situation, and each students gets the same opportunities,” Crump said. “The Sim Lab familiarizes them with the atmosphere in the hospital so they can practice focusing on the patient.”

The Centralina Workforce Development Board is a proud partner with Stanly Community College and is proud of them for developing new and innovative ways to reach out to students. Stanly Community College is also an active partner with the Competitive Workforce Alliance Allied Health Regional Skills Partnershipwww.agreatworkforce.com/alliedhealth. For more information on the Centralina Workforce Development Board, please contact Emily Clamp at (704) 348-2732 or by e-mail at eclamp@centralina.org.

Respiratory therapy students Elizabeth Hinson and April Russell care for a mannequin “patient” in the Sim Lab at SCC.

Supporting Our Future Workforce

Children’s Homes of Iredell County Receives Grant to Help Youth Gain Skills and Become Productive Adults

The Housing Opportunity Foundation awarded Children’s Homes of Iredell County $2,500 through its annual Community Grants Program.

The foundation serves as the charitable arm of the Charlotte Regional Realtor Association and is dedicated to making a difference in the community by creating housing opportunities, promoting homeownership, and positioning realtors as leaders.

The Community Grants Program, now in its third year, supports area organizations that address unmet housing needs in Mecklenburg and Iredell counties. The Realtor Association directed program awards a total of $10,000 annually to area agencies, and has awarded $30,000 to 14 non-profits.

The $2,500 awarded will be used to provide educational training materials, college application funds, and transportation funds for employment and college visits to the young adults in the Children’s Homes’ Transitional Living Program. This program houses foster children ages 17-21 who have been in the care of the Iredell County Department of Social Services. The skills and resources that these young adults receive through this program help them to become more independent and self-sufficient as they age out of the foster care system.

This funding will allow them to gain the skills necessary to pursue employment and/or advanced education, and will prepare them to be productive adults.

The Centralina Workforce Development Board is a proud partner of the Children’s Homes of Iredell County and congratulates them on this wonderful grant! Giving young adults opportunities for their future is something the Board strongly believes in. The Board offers special congratulations to Executive Director of Children’s Homes of Iredell County, Brenda Speece, who is also a Centralina Workforce Development Board member. For more information on this grant or on the Centralina Workforce Development Board, please contact Emily Clamp at (704) 348-2732 or by e-mail at eclamp@centralina.org.

Laurie Knudsen, 2011 association/CMLS president; Joan Goode, Realtor® and chair of the Housing Opportunity Foundation Committee; Brenda Speece, executive director of Children’s Homes of Iredell County; Sonya Leonard, Realtor®; Anne Marie Howard, association/CMLS CEO.

Connecting Academics and Careers

Rowan-Cabarrus Community College Moves Nursing Programs to NC Research Campus in Kannapolis

Rowan-Cabarrus Community College will house its nursing programs at North Carolina Research Campus in Kannapolis next semester.

College President Dr. Carol Spalding said the move will put the licensed practical nursing and the registered nursing programs under the same roof for the first time. “The programs have wanted to be together to share equipment and faculty,” she said.

The transition into the college’s $26 million, 62,000 square-foot biotechnology building will also free up space at the North and South campuses, where the programs are currently being administered. The North Campus currently has a space shortage of 132,000 square feet.

Spalding said the goal has always been to have the programs at one location, but neither campus could handle the influx of students. Shifting the programs to the Research Campus is a logical solution because of the biotechnology component, she said.

“We are really excited about this move because we believe the nursing program translates biotechnology into careers that people understand,” Spalding said.

College spokeswoman Paula Dibley said nursing students will also have more lab space to work in after the move. The college will use $240,000 in grant funds to renovate two of the building’s unfinished classrooms.

“They are going to be pretty state of the art,” Dibley said. “They are going to be very interactive with a simulated hospital in one of the rooms.”

Students will also have access to lifelike mannequins to practice their diagnostic and treatment skills.

About 131 students will be affected by the change. Dibley said college officials recognize some students will likely have to travel further to get to class, but the location is more centralized.

“Obviously for some students it’s not going to be ideal, but Kannapolis is smack in the middle of our service area,” she said.

Dibley said another advantage to housing the nursing programs at the Research Campus will be its close proximity to the Cabarrus Health Alliance, whose new building is currently under construction.

“That’s just walking distance from the Research Campus so some of our students have the potential to do some field work there,” she said.

The Centralina Workforce Development Board is a proud partner with the Rowan-Cabarrus Community College. The Board is happy to see its partners reaching out to the upcoming workforce and helping prepare them to be the best in the region. For more information on the Centralina Workforce Development Board, please contact Emily Clamp at (704) 348-2732 or by e-mail at eclamp@centralina.org.

Focused and Driven for In Demand Skills

First Class at Rowan County Early College is On Track and Determined to Succeed

Seniors Leslie Bean and Winne Wang chose to attend the Rowan County Early College when it opened four years ago because they wanted a different high school experience.

“I just think it’s a better opportunity,” said Bean, who would have attended South Rowan. “I figured it would be less drama and more focused on academics.”

Both girls said the program also was alluring because of the ability to earn college credits from Rowan-Cabarrus Community College while still in high school.

“I liked the idea of getting an associate degree by the end of my four years of high school,” said Wang, who would have attended North Rowan.

The girls are just two of the 44 students who make up the Early College’s first senior class.

“It’s exciting to finally get to see it all come together,” Principal Cindy Misenheimer said Wednesday. “What they’ve done is absolutely amazing. There will not be a single one of them who will leave here without college credits and it hasn’t cost them a penny.”

Misenheimer said the focus now will be making sure students stay on track to receive both their high school diploma and college credits. “All it takes is really one thing to get them off track and the next thing you know they’re not graduating from high school,” she said.

The Early College, geared toward first-generation college students and populations that are underrepresented in colleges, is located in Building 200 at Rowan-Cabarrus College’s North campus in Salisbury.

“We teach very differently from the traditional high school,” Misenheimer said. Misenheimer said the students spent a good amount of time reading and writing. And teachers focus on 21st century skills, as well as critical thinking. “We talk about and read about things you wouldn’t normally touch in a typical high school,” she said.

Bean and Wang said they are excited to be part of the first graduating class.

“I feel accomplished. I feel content,” Bean said. “I feel like I’ve finally made it.”

Wang said at first it was challenging to be in classes with college students as a freshman in high school.

“I think it’s gotten easier to fit into a college classroom,” she said. “I know how to balance it out and do the work.”

The workload at the school is “tremendous,” according to Misenheimer.

“We tell kids to be prepared to do two hours of homework, and we’re not talking about worksheets,” she said.

Wang said the school has helped her be better prepared for college. She hasn’t decided where she wants to attend, but she’s planning to pursue a career as a neurosurgeon.

Bean said the course load has given her an idea of what life might be like after graduation. She’s hoping to attend Liberty University and possibly major in Biblical studies.

Misenheimer said another plus for the 244 students who attend the Early College is the smaller class size.

“Here I feel like we are all family and I feel like if I were to stumble there would be someone to help me up,” Bean said. “They give us birthday cards on our birthday every year. I don’t think traditional high schools even know when your birthday is.”

Misenheimer said students who are interested in an innovative approach to education should consider the Early College. But she said it’s definitely not for everyone, including those interested in athletics and arts like chorus and band.

“If you want a challenge, you want a different type of education and you are willing to do the work, this is your place,” she said.

The Centralina Workforce Board is a strong partner with Rowan-Salisbury Schools, Rowan County Early College, and Rowan-Cabarrus Community College. The Board congratulates those students who have committed themselves to this great program and wish them luck on the future endeavors. For more information on the Rowan County Early College or on the Centralina Workforce Development Board, please contact Emily Clamp at (704) 348-2732 or by e-mail at eclamp@centralina.org.

Cindy Misenheimer is the Principal of Rowan County Early College.

A New Brand for Future Success

Greater Statesville Development Corporation Becomes Statesville Regional Development

Statesville’s economic development organization is changing its name and its website to boost its marketability to businesses on the move.

Statesville Regional Development, formerly known as the Greater Statesville Development Corporation started using its new name and logo on Monday September 12, 2011.

The new logo pairs the “diamond roads” symbol with the stylized “S” most Statesville organizations have used since the completion of the branding effort earlier this year.

The new name is paired with the organization’s new tagline, “Economic Growth for Statesville, Troutman and Iredell County, North Carolina.”

SRD Business Expansion and Retention Director John Marek said the change is an extension of the branding effort and fulfills one of the goals set by the Opportunity 2015 campaign.

The new name is part of the 25-year-old economic development organization’s marketing identity explained Marek. The nonprofit will still do business as the Greater Statesville Development Corporation as the new name is phased in, Marek said.

Statesville Regional Development delayed its website redesign until after Greenville, South Carolina – based branding consultants Arnett Muldrow completed the branding project for the city, SRD, Greater Statesville Chamber of Commerce, the Statesville Convention and Visitors Bureau and Downtown Statesville Development Corporation.

The idea of changing the name came after the consultants with Charlotte-based Burke Communications suggested using “regional” or “community” instead of “greater” to describe the SRD.

“We have a lot of brand equity because of Statesville,” Marek said.

The redesign is important in selling Statesville to potential companies, Marek said. Site selection consultants search websites to get their first glimpse at an area, he said.

Unlike brochures, the website contains data about available buildings and the area that the consultants use when coming up with a list of potential locations, he said.

The new website will use portals to direct site selection consultants to the websites they want, which will help the SRD save money on online advertising, Marek said. It will also give staff members more flexibility to change the content.

Please continue to look to the Centralina Workforce Development Board’s monthly E-Newsletter for updates on this exciting development in our region!

Investors in Local Industry Recognized

Monroe Economic Development 13th Annual Industry Appreciation Event

More than 150 people who helped shape Monroe’s economy through investment in industry gathered at Monroe Country Club on Thursday September 15, 2011.

Monroe Economic Development held its 13th annual Industry Appreciation event to thank companies that invested in the local economy.

Representatives from 66 companies participated in the all-day event, Monroe Economic Development Director Chris Platé said.

“We do this as just a way to say thank you to the industries for what they’ve done for Monroe,” Platé said.

Company leaders network with each other and economic development staff. It helps facilitate the sharing of ideas about the local economy and what products are available nearby. It also introduces company leaders to economic development staff who can provide support or research when needed.

“This has grown into the largest industrial event in the county,” Platé said. “The first year we did this we had 16 people. Now it grows every year.”

Participants played golf most of the afternoon and retired to the clubhouse for dinner and to hear keynote speaker, Dave Sanderson. He was one of the 155 survivors of flight 1549, better known as the Miracle on the Hudson that crash-landed in the Hudson River January 15, 2009.

“He talked about the importance of leadership and how the things you do can have a huge impact on the people around you,” Platé said.

Monroe Economic Development also gave two awards to individuals who contributed to the local economy. The Economic Development Ambassador award went to Paul Woodbury with Scott Safety. The Circle of Champions award went to Al Guarnier, an attorney with Parker Poe’s Charlotte office for the advice and guidance he provides concerning international companies.

The Centralina Workforce Development Board is a partner with Monroe Economic Development. The Board is happy to see them reaching out to local industries in Monroe and realizing their importance to the community. For more information on this event or on the Centralina Workforce Development Board, please contact Emily Clamp at (704) 348-2732 or by e-mail at eclamp@centralina.org.

Dave Sanderson, one of the 155 passengers of flight 1549 that crash-landed in the Hudson River in January, 2009, told his story of survival and appreciation at the event held on Thursday September 15, 2011.

Lincoln County Business Park Readies for Launch

Airlie Business Park Confirms First Tenant

Construction is expected to start soon at Airlie Business Park at Ingleside in eastern Lincoln County. The 231-acre park — off N.C. Highway 16 at Optimist Club Road in Denver — already has its first tenant in Hydac Technology Corporation.

The German company plans to build a 60,000-square-foot plant for making cooling systems for mobile and industrial equipment. Hydac has said its operation will eventually employ 54.

The Lincoln Economic Development Association recently celebrated the launch of the park.

The association has had several partners in the venture, including Lincoln County, which provided the infrastructure. Others include the N.C. Rural Center and the NC Department of Commerce, which combined to contribute $785,500 in grants to prepare the park. And Duke Energy Corporation and Piedmont Natural Gas Company Inc. will provide utilities to the development.

Please continue to look to the Centralina Workforce Development Board’s monthly E-Newsletter for updates on this exciting development in our region!

Partners Working Together to Reach Out to Local Businesses

Stanly County Chamber and Stanly County EDC Collaborate on Outreach Campaign

The Stanly County Chamber of Commerce provides support and services for local businesses. Using its relationships with these businesses, the Chamber is able to help local government agencies expand their reach by providing networking opportunities through its members.

The Stanly County Chamber of Commerce and the Stanly County Economic Development Commission (EDC) have long collaborated to promote business in Stanly County. In an effort to take that collaboration another step forward, EDC Director Paul Stratos has initiated a new campaign called “One More Question.”

“We want to leverage the strong relationships that Stanly County businesses have with clients and suppliers around the country and the globe,” says Stratos. “We are encouraging Chamber members to inquire about their business partners’ potential expansion plans. In other words, ask one more question during business conversations to help identify companies interested in expanding operations in the Carolinas.”

“We then ask them to relay that information through the Chamber to us. This gives us an opportunity to share the advantages that a location in Stanly County can provide,” he says.

“The Chamber looks forward to assisting the EDC in establishing the lines of communication required to successfully engage interested Chamber members in this effort,” says Stanly County Chamber of Commerce President and CEO and Centralina Workforce Development Board member Tom Ramseur. “Details of obtaining this information from Chamber members for this campaign are being worked out and a letter will be sent to the membership soon.”

“Word of mouth has always proved beneficial when looking for ways to create new businesses,” says Albemarle Chiropractic Center’s Dr. Connie Eckman, Chamber Board Chair.

“What better way to get the word out about Stanly County than by those who have successful locally owned businesses. These allies are both committed and invested in our community while knowing the value of Stanly County, and what is has to offer,” says Dr. Eckman.

Stratos concurs, and notes that leads generated through allies and through personal relationships result in a higher percentage of prospect visits and thus successful locations.

“Efforts like this can prove to be very valuable to Stanly County,” he said.

Please continue to look to the Centralina Workforce Development Board’s monthly E-Newsletter for updates on this exciting development in our region!

Mooresville Based Lowe’s Wants You to “Never Stop Improving”

National Chain Rolling Out New Tagline and Marketing Campaign

National home improvement Lowe’s Company Inc., with its headquarters in Mooresville (Iredell County), rolled out a new branding tagline, “Never Stop Improving,” it plans to combine with a new high-tech tool to entice consumers.

Lowe’s spokeswoman Katie Cody said the new tagline, which will replace “Let’s Build Something Together,” aims to motivate both employees and customers.

In October 2011, the company plans to follow up with its new online feature MyLowes to help track customers’ purchases and home improvement projects. The interactive tool allows people to set up different rooms in their houses and adjust things accordingly, Cody said.

Lowe’s reported relatively flat sales within its 1,725 home improvement stores in the United States, Canada and Mexico in its second quarter earnings, which fell below the company’s expectations, said CEO and President Robert Niblock. Net earnings for the quarter that ended July 29 were $830 million.

In the second quarter results, Niblock indicated that executives were developing new strategies to reach customers.

The next day, Lowe’s biggest competitor, Atlanta-based Home Depot, reported earnings of $1.4 billion, compared to $ 1.2 billion during the same quarter in 2010.

Cody said through the rebranding process, the Fortune 50 company has looked into what its customers are looking for.

“It’s a new time for us,” she said. “We are being more bold and exciting.”

MyLowes keeps each purchase tracked, she said, right down to the paint formula. It also keeps on hand product information and manuals.

“It is just a good way to keep it all in that place,” she said.

Please continue to look to the Centralina Workforce Development Board’s monthly E-Newsletter for updates on this exciting development in our region!

Driving Success for $6 Billion Industry

Town of Mooresville Creating Motorsports Panel

The town of Mooresville is inviting representatives of its biggest motorsports teams to serve on a panel that will explore ways to keep the industry strong in the down economy.

"Our goal is to sit down with the race teams and ask, 'What aren't we doing, what can we do to be more successful?'" Mooresville commissioner Chris Carney said. "... It really boils down to jobs and how can we keep them here."

Motorsports is a $6 billion industry in the state. Ninety percent of NASCAR teams are based in North Carolina. Mooresville is called "Race City USA" for its many motorsports-affiliated operations.

The town has lost some teams to Concord through industry consolidation in recent years, and the industry has experienced hundreds of layoffs since the recession. But Mooresville remains home to some of the sport’s most famous enterprises, including Dale Earnhardt Inc., Penske Racing South, and driver Dale Earnhardt Jr.'s JR Motorsports.

Carney said he got the idea for a motorsports committee during a discussion with NASCAR driver Mike Wallace. Carney said the committee could, in part, explore linking motorsports teams with potential sponsors among the town's other businesses and industries.

The town also could help teams generate more revenue by steering teams to defense-related projects and other work, Carney said. The Mooresville-South Iredell Economic Development Corporation has helped some teams find such contracts, he said.

Commissioner Miles Atkins said he intends to serve on the committee. The panel could help the town better understand the needs of the motorsports community, Atkins said. It also could help town government learn how to better promote the industry, he said.

Atkins represented the town when a group of students from Lake Norman Elementary and Mount Mourne I.B. traveled to Raleigh this year to petition the General Assembly to name stock-car racing the state sport. The students succeeded, and Governor Bev Perdue eventually signed the measure into law at Charlotte Motor Speedway.

Carney said the town intends to invite other motorsports notables to serve on the committee, including John Dodson, community/NASCAR team relations director at NASCAR Technical Institute and Universal Technical Institute in Mooresville. Dodson says he knows the message he'll push.

The committee, he said, needs to promote nationally the highly skilled workforce and hi-tech equipment in local motorsports shops, he said. It's a workforce and technology that can serve any industry, from NASA on down, he said. "We want Race City USA to be known as an industrial monster that can build anything you need built," Dodson said.

Please continue to look to the Centralina Workforce Development Board’s monthly E-Newsletter for updates on this exciting development in our region!

Natalie Sinner practices patterns for lug nuts while taking tires on and off at a pit stop class at NASCAR and Universal Technical Institute.

Local Medical Centers Recognized Nationally

Rowan Regional Medical Center, Davis Regional Medical Center, and Lake Norman Regional Medical Center Among Nation’s Top Performers

Rowan Regional Medical Center, located in Salisbury, NC, Davis Regional Medical Center, located in Statesville, NC, and Lake Norman Regional Medical Center, located in Mooresville, NC have been named listed among the nation’s Top Performers on Key Quality Measures by The Joint Commission, the leading accreditor of health care organizations in America.

Rowan Regional was recognized for meeting required thresholds for heart attack, heart failure, pneumonia and surgical care categories. Davis Regional was recognized for achieving required thresholds for heart failure, pneumonia, and children’s asthma. Lake Norman Regional was listed based on its performance in the fields of heart attack, heart failure, and pneumonia. Rowan Regional is operated by Novant. Davis Regional and Lake Norman Regional are owned and operated by Health Management Associates, Inc.

For the first time, The Joint Commission is recognizing hospitals that attain and sustain excellence in accountability measure performance. As a top performer, Rowan Regional, Davis Regional, and Lake Norman Regional are among the 405 hospitals in the United States and 15 in North Carolina earning this distinction.

Recognition was based on data reported to The Joint Commission in 2010. The organizations had to meet two thresholds:

• Achieve a composite performance of 95 percent or above.

• Meet or exceed a 95 percent performance target for every accountability measure.

“Excellent care, in every dimension, is something that all patients expect and deserve and providing this level of care takes the dedication of the entire hospital staff,” Rowan Regional President Dari Caldwell said. “To be publicly recognized by The Joint Commission as a top-performing hospital is truly an honor.”

Davis Regional CEO Andy Davis said “we understand that what matters most to our patients is safe, effective care”. “That’s why our hospital and associates have made a commitment to accreditation and to positive patient outcomes through evidence-based care processes”.

In addition to being included in today’s release of The Joint Commission’s “Improving America’s Hospitals” annual report, Rowan Regional, Davis Regional, and Lake Norman Regional will be recognized on The Joint Commission’s Quality Check website, www.qualitycheck.org.

An independent, not-for-profit organization, The Joint Commission is the nation’s oldest and largest standards-setting and accrediting body in health care. Learn more about The Joint Commission at www.jointcommission.org.

Please continue to look to the Centralina Workforce Development Board’s monthly E-Newsletter for updates on this exciting development in our region!

Growing Jobs Gets Closer

Commissioners Approve GrowGreen Move to Anson County

At the Anson County Commissioners regular monthly meeting held on Monday September 12, 2011, the Commissioners unanimously passed a resolution in support of biomass power plant GrowGreen's plans to locate a facility in Anson County.

The GrowGreen project will include a hydroponic greenhouse and a solar thermal / biomass power plant, located on Highway 52 North just outside Wadesboro. The site will start out with a 50-acre greenhouse and expand to 100 acres at a later date.

The biomass plant will burn wood waste as a source of renewable energy, according to Sean Lehman, director of communications for GrowGreen Power. The project is expected to bring 300 permanent jobs to the county.

Please continue to look to the Centralina Workforce Development Board’s monthly E-Newsletter for updates on this exciting development in our region!

llustration of the new GrowGreen Power’s proposed facility in Anson County.

There's a JobLink Near You!

As the workforce specialists that deliver the vision of the Centralina Workforce Development Board, there are eight JobLink Career Centers in the Centralina region dedicated to serving businesses and career seekers. We are highly invested in finding our customers not just a job, but a career that meets their interests and goals. We do this by staying connected in the community and understanding what businesses need, and providing services and resources to help career seekers achieve success. Our Centers range from full service to convenient satellite offices, with many online offerings. Meet our many partners that help to serve you.

Anson County JobLink Career Center
116 West Wade Street
Wadesboro, NC 28170

Cabarrus County JobLink Career Center
2275 Kannapolis Highway
Concord, NC 28027

Iredell County JobLink Career Center - Mooresville Center
470-A North Broad Street
Mooresville, NC 28115

Iredell County JobLink Career Center - Statesville Center
133 Island Ford Road
Statesville, NC 28625

Lincoln County JobLink Career Center
529 North Aspen Street
Lincolnton, NC 28092

Rowan County JobLink Career Center
1904 South Main Street
Salisbury, NC 28144

Stanly County JobLink Career Center
2215 US Highway 52 North
Albemarle, NC 28001

Union County JobLink Career Center
1125 Skyway Drive
Monroe, NC 28110

For more information on Centralina region JobLink Career Centers, click here.

Commitment to workforce excellence



August 2011
(Source: NC Employment Security Commission)
Unemployment Rate
Persons Employed
Centralina WDB Region
State of NC

For more information on employment, click here

The Golden (LEAF) Gift Will Keep on Rolling

South Piedmont Community College Career Cruiser Cruising for Another Year

South Piedmont Community College (SPCC) has been granted a one-year extension for utilizing remaining funds from a $556,380 Golden LEAF grant awarded in 2009 to purchase and operate the Career Cruiser, a mobile classroom serving communities across Anson County.

With the original grant period coming to an end, SPCC staff found they had met all the project’s goals ahead of schedule with $130,000 of the grant remaining. Those goals included serving 300 individuals on the cruiser and certifying 100 workers Job Ready with essential workplace skills through the Career Readiness Certification (CRC) program.

“We were thrilled to get the extension because we know there is so much more that we can do,” said Linda Kappauf, Director of Human Resources Development at SPCC and a member of the JobLink Management Teams in Anson and Union counties.

Kappauf said those plans include working more closely with faith-based organizations and HOLLA! (Helping Our Loved ones Learn and Achieve!), a grassroots organization dedicated to improving educational opportunities, to reach out to even more Anson County adults in need of training to be certified Job Ready. HOLLA! is also a Centralina WDB SHARE network access site for services.

“This is a real credit to the fiscal responsibility the people working with the Career Cruiser have shown,” said Stuart Wasilowski, Vice-President of Corporate and Continuing Education at SPCC. “The extension was requested because we have met our performance goals for this outreach project while conserving enough of the money to cover an additional year of operations.”

Wasilowski said the grant extension was expected to allow the college to certify 40-50 additional candidates Job Ready. He said that a study of people who had already accessed services aboard the Cruiser showed that roughly half had enrolled in additional course work at the college after they encountered Cruiser staffers. The extension is expected to continue that trend and introduce additional students to SPCC’s college credit, continuing education and Basic Skills programs.

The Centralina Workforce Development Board is a proud partner with South Piedmont Community College. We congratulate them on this great news! This growth will help them reach more individuals within the community and assist them in reaching their goals and dream careers. To learn more about the Career Cruiser, visit www.spcc.edu or call (704) 290-6292. For more information on the Centralina Workforce Development Board, please contact Emily Clamp at (704) 348-2732 or by e-mail at eclamp@centralina.org.

The Career Cruiser, a mobile classroom, will be serving Anson County for another year, helping citizens get Job Ready.

The Centralina Workforce Development Board is in YOUR Community!

During the month of September 2011, the Centralina Workforce Development Board has been actively involved with events, seminars, training sessions, and other meetings all designed to help build a better workforce for our region. Beyond our involvement with the Centralina Youth Council and the Re-Employment Bridge Institute community training detailed in this e-newsletter, here are some the activities of the Board members and WDB staff for September.

Centralina WDB Executive Planning Committee meeting – held on Tuesday September 27 at The Floor Pavilion in Concord. David Hollars, Centralina WDB Executive Director provided staff support. The Committee reviewed options for possibly technology upgrades for the workforce system, discussed details of the upcoming ESC/NC Department of Commerce merger, and set the agenda for the October 18 WDB meeting

Rowan Biz-Ed Connect meeting - held on Friday September 2 at Rowan-Salisbury Schools office in East Spencer. Centralina WDB Executive Director David Hollars participated in this meeting which included a presentation on the Career Readiness Certification and Work Certified programs from Carol Allen of Rowan-Cabarrus Community College.

Iredell County Employers Forum – held on Wednesday September 7 at Statesville Civic Center. Sponsored by Greater Statesville Chamber of Commerce and Statesville Regional Economic Development, this forum featured interaction with two panels of employers (manufacturing and retail/service industries) and the problems they face in growing their local businesses.

Mooresville Graded Schools Career Bridge meeting – held on Monday September 19 at NF Woods School in Mooresville. David Hollars, Centralina WDB Executive Director, participated in this meeting which is an advisory board for career and technical education

Union County JobReady Partnership meeting – held on Wednesday September 21 at Allvac in Monroe. Centralina WDB Executive Director David Hollars participated in this meeting. Dr. Ed Davis, Superintendent for Union County Public Schools presented an overview of the school’s GIG vision – Globalization, Innovation, and Graduation.

NC Community Colleges Adult Educators Association – Conference presentation – made on Thursday September 22 at Sheraton Imperial Hotel in Research Triangle Park. Centralina WDB Executive Director David Hollars and Dr. Nick Gennett and Keri Allman from Rowan-Cabarrus CC presented a session on the Re-Employment Bridge Institute.

Union County JobLink Career Center – Employee Appreciation/Older Worker Week recognition event – held on Friday September 23 at the JobLink in Monroe. Centralina WDB Chair Janet Hudson and WDB Executive Director David Hollars participated in this event.

Re-Employment Bridge Institute – Community Based training sessions – held on Thursday September 8 at Cleveland Community College in Shelby and on Monday September 26 at Gaston College in Belmont. Centralina WDB Executive Director David Hollars along with RBI and Rowan-Cabarrus CC staff participated in these all day sessions to help workforce leaders in each of these communities learn new techniques in serving the dislocated worker.

NC Department of Commerce – Division of Workforce Development – Financial Management Training – held on Wednesday September 28 at the NC Workforce Development Training Center in Raleigh. Centralina WDB Executive Director David Hollars and WDB Operations Manager Patricia White participated in this all day training session.

NC Youth Summit Planning committee meeting – held on Friday September 9 in Greensboro. Centralina WDB Youth Program Specialist Natasha Pender, who is chair of the Summit committee, conducted this meeting.

Workforce Investment Act – MIS Users Group meeting – held on Friday September 30 at NW Piedmont WDB offices in Winston-Salem. Centralina WDB Operations Manager Patricia White participated in this meeting.

Workforce Business Development and Assistance – provided by Vail Carter, Centralina WDB Business Services Representative for the following area companies and organizations:

  • Participated in Census Data Workshop hosted by the Centralina Council of Governments and the U.S. Census Bureau. Received training on the new web tools that will be available and networked with census data users from around the region – September 13.
  • Participated in a meeting of the Competitive Workforce Alliance Allied Health Regional Health Skills Partnership Reinvention Committee via teleconference. Discussed plans for the future of the partnership and how the committee can provide a framework to be presented to the full membership. Was assigned the task of collecting data on attendance at all previous meetings as well as details on the summit that was held in Concord in 2008 – September 15.
  • Hosted a meeting with Eleanor Herndon, Executive Director of N.C. REAL Enterprises and Arlene Childers, Assistant Director. Discussed possible partnership with their organization and the Centralina Workforce Development Board’s Youth Council to host events during 2012 promoting entrepreneurship – September 19.
  • Attended International Economic Development Conference at the Charlotte Convention Center – September 20.
  • Participated in Rowan/Cabarrus Business Roundtable at the Rowan-Cabarrus Community College Biotech Building at the North Carolina Research Campus in Kannapolis. Discussed the importance of getting business input and participation in the 2012 N.C. Skills Survey for Employers – September 22.

These are only a few examples of how your Centralina Workforce Development Board is actively involved with our partners in our counties every month. To find out more about getting involved with the Centralina Workforce Development Board, please contact David Hollars at (704) 348-2717 or by e-mail at dhollars@centralina.org or visit our website at www.centralinaworks.com. The Centralina Workforce Development – The Competitive Force in Our Global Economy.


It is that time of year again as workforce professionals across North Carolina gear up for the Workforce Development Partnership Conference 2011. This year's conference titled Excelling In A High Performance Culture will be held October 12-14 at the Sheraton Four Seasons Hotel and Joseph S. Koury Convention Center in Greensboro.

Several featured presenters have been highlighted. They include Judson Laipply, David Hollars, Keith Crisco, Scott Ralls and many more! Some of the featured workshops include: “A High Performance Workforce in State Government,” “RBI: Bridging the Needs of Business and Workforce Development,” and “Assessing the Allied Health Workforce Needs.” You also don’t want to miss the Governor’s Awards Banquet on Thursday October 13, 2011 that will feature Stanly County employer Avdel USA receiving their award for “Outstanding Employer.”

Registration and preliminary agenda information can be found at the NC Workforce Development Training Center website at www.ncwdtc.com.

So don’t delay and sign up today! And be sure to make your room reservations at the Sheraton Four Seasons as soon as possible at 1-800-242-6556 or www.sheratongreensboro.com. For more information about the NC Workforce Development Partnership Conference please contact Robbin Davis Broome, Conference Coordinator at (919) 329.5588 or rbroome@nccommerce.com.

The Power of Digital Inclusion Helps Those with Disabilities Step Forward to Employment

National Council on Disability To Hold First Virtual Job Fair

On Tuesday October 4, 2011, in observance of National Disability Employment Awareness Month and in connection with the online release of National Council on Disability’s (NCD) newest report, “The Power of Digital Inclusion: Technology’s Impact on Employment and Opportunities for People with Disabilities” the NCD will host their first-ever virtual job fair.

On that day, they will be promoting employment opportunities within the Federal Government, non-profit organizations and private sector via Twitter, Facebook and the NCD listserv.

Between now and Monday October 3, 2011, anyone interested can send their employment opportunities to LCarterLong@ncd.gov with the subject line “Job Opportunity.”

Employment rates for people with disabilities have fallen almost continuously since the 1990s, despite the passage of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) twenty-one years ago. When employed, people with disabilities have been a remarkably reliable labor force historically, but when industries cut back, disabled people are often the first to lose their jobs.

When there is growth, they are consistently the last hired. The employment gap between men and women with and without work-related disabilities has increased over the past 20 years, hitting 57.4 percent by 2009.

Lastly, jobs for people with disabilities tend to be in secondary labor markets with subsistence pay, low skill requirements, and few opportunities for advancement. A higher than average number of positions are part-time jobs.

Over time electronic networks and new digital technologies have transformed how we communicate. The “new economy” thrives on human knowledge and uses ways the ways we share information as its starting point. Connection, interdependence and free exchange of ideas are the foundation of the new economy in general but also bolster the workplace specifically.

Virtual worlds are steadily eradicating the barriers that have traditionally blocked equal access to job opportunities. As such, electronic networks arguably level the playing field more for people with disabilities than they do for the non-disabled population.

On October 4, positions will be distributed via NCD’s Twitter feed with the hashtag #NCDJobFair at regular intervals throughout the day. Anyone interested can track the event live and see connections being made! At the end of the virtual job fair, NCD will send out a single email listserv message containing a collection of all the job opportunities posted throughout the day.

You can find the National Council on Disability online at the following places:

For more information this virtual job fair please contact Emily Clamp at (704) 348-2732 or by e-mail at eclamp@centralina.org.

NC Research Campus Update

Find Out What’s the Latest with this World Renowned Biotech Development

New President of Murdock Research Institute Named
Dr. James Oblinger, former chancellor of NC State University, has been named President of the David H. Murdock Research Institute in Kannapolis.

He fills a vacancy created in June 2011 when Mike Luther stepped down from the position.

Oblinger will be stationed at the plant institute and brings an extensive background in food science and agriculture, as well as 25 years of experience in administration and management.

LabCorp Teaming Up with Murdock Research Institute
LabCorp Clinical Trials has announced a strategic alliance with the David H. Murdock Research Institute at the NC Research Campus.

Esoterix Clinical Trials Services, a division of Laboratory Corporation of America Holdings, said the partnership will provide LabCorp clients with access to enhanced assay development services.

The Murdock Research Institute owns and operates the Core Laboratory at the Research Campus in Kannapolis.

In LabCorp’s newest venture in Kannapolis, assays developed at the Murdock Research Institute for contracted research will be transferred to LabCorp Clinical Trials laboratories worldwide to support global clinical studies. The agreement also provides a way to commercialize companion diagnostics and other biomarker assays once clinical validation has been established.

The services available to clients through the Murdock Research Institute include broad biomarker discovery and proof of concept assay development to support early and late stage drug discovery and development.

The Power of Powders and Industry Growth
From fighting cancer to fighting wrinkles, the uber-healthy compound that gives red and purple fruits and vegetables their brilliant color will hit store shelves within a year as a new ingredient in food products and cosmetics, Dr. Mary Ann Lila with NC State University announced at the NC Research Campus.

She states that NC State University and Rutgers University scientists have figured out a way to extract and stabilize the natural substance, called anthocyanins, and sell it to food, healthcare and pharmaceutical companies.

Anthocyanins provide a wide range of health benefits, from preventing chronic disease to improving the appearance of skin.

The new ingredient could show up in cereals, granola bars, even gum, as well as cosmetic lotions and creams.

Lila explained that this could also bring new businesses to the NC Research Campus and increase manufacturing of some of the products at the Campus.

Please stay tuned to the Centralina Workforce Development Board’s monthly E-Newsletter for more developments on this exciting story. For more information on what is going on at the NC Research Campus, please visit the Centralina Workforce Development Board’s website at www.centralinaworks.com.

James Oblinger, new president of the David H. Murdock Research Institute, stands in front of the Core Laboratory Building in Kannapolis.

Help Us Do Better By Telling Us More

Every month the Centralina Workforce Development Board works hard at trying to bring you the most up to date and innovative stories from around the region. We try to incorporate information that can be beneficial to both businesses and job seekers, as well as promote the accomplishments that are being done throughout the Centralina region. We want to know what you think of the monthly E-Newsletter. We want to know if the articles are informative and if they are relevant to you and your organization. We’d like to know what you’d like to see more of in the newsletter, as well as what you’d like to see less of. We are looking to improve so that we can give back to you the most cutting-edge and informative newsletter out there.

Please send any comments about the monthly E-Newsletter to Emily Clamp at eclamp@centralina.org. If you are new to the newsletter and would like to see our previous issues please visit them at  our website. We thank you in advance for your feedback and your assistance in our rebranding process!

New Year Kickoff for Centralina Youth Council

Council Get Details of Summer Youth Success and Adds 5 New Members

The Centralina Youth Council held their most recent meeting on Thursday September 22, 2011 at the Boys and Girls Club in Concord.

The Council welcomed five new members to its growing roster. The new Council members included: Chris Lowder, Courtney Grey, Jessica Lindsay, Ebony Connor, and Calissa Whitner.

Christopher Lowder is the Executive Director of School Operations of Cabarrus County Schools (appointed in August 2011). Christopher has years of experience with the Cabarrus Schools System including time as an Assistant Principle, Principle and High School Director. He has an English Education degree from UNC Chapel Hill; and is now working on his dissertation for a Ph.D. to complement his Masters in School Administration and a Master’s in English, all three from UNC Charlotte.

Courtney Grey is a student in the GED program through the Centralina WDB sponsored WIA program at Salisbury-Rowan Community Action Agency (SRCAA). She plans to attend Rowan-Cabarrus Community College and hopefully transfer to a four year university. She is interested in pursuing a career in Geriatrics. Courtney is currently working at the Coltrane LIFE Center, an Adult Day Care Facility for her WIA limited internship and Summer Youth Employment, to gain experience. Courtney is a member of the Job and Life Skills Clubs at SRCAA

Jessica Lindsay has almost completed her GED studies. She wants to pursue a career in the business field. Jessica plans to attend Rowan-Cabarrus Community College in January 2012. She has a son name Aiden and during summer youth employment she worked at Vogue Cleaners. Jessica is also a member of the Life Skills and Job Clubs as part of the Centralina WDB sponsored WIA program at Salisbury-Rowan Community Action Agency.

Ebony Connor is a GED student in the Centralina WDB sponsored WIA program at Salisbury-Rowan Community Action Agency (Rowan County). She participates in the Job Club and Life Skills Club; her goals include pursuing her GED and enrolling into Post-Secondary Education. She also strives to be an advocate for her peers.

Ebony wants to attend Winston Salem State and later pursue a career in the military while committing her life as pastor of a church. She has no children but is commit to her nieces and nephews. She is currently working at Vogue Cleaners on her WIA Limited Internship.

Calissa Whitner is a student in the Centralina WDB sponsored WIA program at the Salisbury-Rowan Community Action Agency (Rowan County). Calissa is working towards obtaining her GED and wishes to become more active in her community. She is a member of the Job Club and Life Skills clubs. Calissa is currently on a limited Internship at Rowan Helping Ministries, she wants to attend Rowan Cabarrus Community College and continue in the Human Service Field for her post-secondary education. She enjoys assisting individuals who are in need and has found her passion while working in the WIA program.

The Youth Council members and guests were able to see/hear presentations from the Workforce Investment Act youth serving agencies in our seven county region, that all gave presentations and summaries of their Summer Youth Employment programs.

The Summer Youth Employment program is one of the elements of the Workforce Investment Act youth program. It provides young adults with an opportunity to gain real life, on the job training and work experience. Many times these opportunities lead to long term, full time employment for our youth; and expose them to people, training and shadowing opportunities that help them become quality employees. The following is a recount of the presentations:

Resource Development Center – Stanly County
Youth Development Specialist, Holly Shaver and Uwharrie Learning Center Director Lanie Cribb, talked about the collaboration between the Resource Development Center and Uwharrie Learning Center. The two came together to develop a two-fold summer youth employment program for the youth in Stanly County.

The first portion of the program was an Entrepreneurial Experience in which the young adults formed a company complete with a business plan, business license, financial statements, etc – named Maq Gold. They partnered with the Stanly Community College Small Business Center, First National Bank and Habitat for Humanity. The group made and sold crafts at the local Farmers Market. They also teamed up with a local Landscaping crew – Curb Appeal Improvements to learn how to pot and care for plants, which they also sold at the Farmers Market.

The Work Experience portion of the program gave each young adult an opportunity to gain even more valuable experience. Youth worked at Martin Industries, Habitat for Humanity, and Stanly Community College for 20 hours per week.

I-CARE, Inc – Iredell and Lincoln Counties
Selena Feimster and Lynn Turner-Smith, both Youth Development Specialists for I-CARE, Inc shared a PowerPoint on the activities of the youth in Iredell and Lincoln counties. They began the summer programs with leadership development workshops and seminars presented by the management team from Enterprise Rent a Car and also “Leading to Change” – a youth development/motivational and training organization. Young adults participated in, and earned certifications in Office Technology, ServSafe, CPR and Forklift operations.

Youth were placed at over fifteen (15) worksites to gain on the job experience. Those sites were: Skinner’s Seafood, Fifth Street Shelter, Salvation Army Thrift Store, Statesville high School, Boys & Girls Club, COPI 21st CCLC, Scream 4 Ice Cream, Habitat for Humanity, Yokefellow Thrift Store, Red Cross, Employment Security Commission, Goodwill, Alpha & Omega Childcare, YMCA, United Way, Gaston Community College and Lincolnton Cultural Center.

Salisbury Rowan Community Action Agency, Inc (SRCAA) – Cabarrus and Rowan Counties
Salisbury Rowan Community Action Agency implemented their summer work experience over a two month period that included extras such as taking youth to open savings accounts, an Entrepreneurship Summit, a Read-a-Thon and a trip to the Disney Leadership Academy. They completed their summer experience by “paying it forward” when they collected over 950 pounds of food to donate to Rowan Helping Ministries to help support needy families in Rowan County.

Ronald Williams, a recent GED graduate and Calissa Whitner, a current program participant presented on behalf of SRCAA; they both expressed appreciation for the opportunity to participate in the WIA program. They were both especially thankful for the staff that helped to groom them for the workplace and encourage them to think about their futures and plan for success.

Union County Community Action, Inc (UCCA) – Anson and Union Counties
Youth from Anson and Union counties were able to participate in the Summer Youth Employment program thanks to staff at UCCA. Garrett Malone, shared a video and presentation on behalf of the youth and staff of both counties. They began with an orientation luncheon for potential work site hosts; then they had a one week work readiness training for youth in which they did resumes, developed work portfolios, participated in mock interviews, worked on job search and communication skills and earned their Career Readiness Certifications.

Young adults from UCCA did a special project in collaboration with South Piedmont Community College called “A Green/Solar Project” in which they received training energy preservation and using natural resources. Youth completed the project by making a solar car fueled by solar energy. Youth “raced” their cars afterwards – just for fun!

Some of the other activities that the youth completed were: Workplace Safety; Work Ethics; Book Club; Financial Literacy; and Teambuilding to name a few. Youth completed their work experience at the following sites: Bojangles, Burnsville Recreation Center, Employment Security Commission, Head Start, HOLLA!, Town of Wadesboro, Wade Radio Station, James Recreational Camp, Monroe Parks and Recreation, South piedmont Community College, Union County Community Shelter, YWCA and the Department of Social Services.

Overall, nearly 100 young adults learned valuable life lessons, gained work experience, earned certifications and participated in opportunities offered to them by the Workforce Investment Act and Centralina Workforce Development Board. The impact of these programs on the lives and families of those participating is far-reaching. Young adults are equipped with tools that prepare them to live successful lives as productive citizens.

The Centralina Workforce Development Board and the Centralina Youth Council are proud to have these wonderful individuals serving on the Council. The Board and the Council congratulate all of the youth who participated in the Summer Youth Employment Program and wishes them continued success! For more information on the Centralina Youth Council, please contact Natasha Pender at (704) 348-2725 or by e-mail at npender@centralina.org. To view the presentations and learn more about the Workforce Investment Act programs please visit: www.way2work.org.

The Centralina Youth Council held its Thursday September 22, 2011 meeting at the Boys and Girls Club in Concord.
Salisbury Rowan Community Action Agency was one of the Workforce Investment Act contractors who presented their Summer Youth Employment Program. The organization and their youth take a second to pose for a picture.


One of the Tops in the Nation – Right in Anson County!

Anson New Tech High School Selected as National Demonstration Site

New Tech Network president Lydia Dobyns announced on Thursday, September 1, 2011 that Anson New Tech High School was selected as a National Demonstration Site in the New Tech Network (NTN).

Anson New Tech epitomized one of the best examples of the New Tech mission — to help students gain the knowledge and skills they need to succeed in life, college and the careers of tomorrow. To receive this distinction of excellence, Anson New Tech achieved many notable accomplishments.

The school had to develop a clear set of student learning outcomes consistent with skills required to succeed in college or career. These include content mastery tied to state standards as well as work ethic/collaboration, critical thinking and oral and written communications. All courses must demonstrate rigorous and relevant Project-Based Learning (PBL) to amplify learning while engaging students in the classroom. The deep integration of technology must be present in all classrooms. Finally, a school culture that establishes students at the center, built on trust, respect and responsibility must be evident throughout the school.

Anson New Tech opened in 2007 with its first class of freshman. The school, located in Wadesboro, is now in its fifth year. Principal Chris Stinson detailed the steps his school has taken to achieve NTN Demonstration site status.

“We opened in 2007 and were immediately challenged with a new way to re-imagine teaching and learning. This past year, we have seen amazing examples of engaged students. It was evident through our hard work, our students are not only better prepared for life and college, they have achieved a deep love of learning,” he said.

Demonstration site schools also play a key role in the expansion of the New Tech Network. Anson New Tech will host tours for interested national, state and local schools who want to see a New Tech school firsthand. Visitors will take part in student-led tours to learn about the fundamentals of the school, including showcasing exemplary project-based learning, integrated use of technology and unique aspects of the school culture. Last year, NTN schools hosted thousands of visitors wishing to experience a New Tech high school. In addition, demonstration sites host national and regional New Tech training events for teachers and administrators.

“These schools are exemplary schools within the New Tech Network. Each school has shown enormous dedication and creativity all centered around providing students with the learning experiences essential to successful post-secondary paths. These students will graduate prepared for college and career options,” said Dobyns.

Anson New Tech High School will also be featured in a two-hour special on MSNBC for a segment that dives deep into the challenges facing education today. The segment, entitled “A Stronger America: Making the Grade,” high-lighted the high school’s innovative approach to education as an example of what is working and succeeding in public education. To view the clip please click here.

The Centralina Workforce Development Board and the Centralina WDB Youth Council are proud to see their local partners reaching out to the region’s youth who are the region’s growing workforce. For more information on this award or on the Centralina Youth Council, please contact Natasha Pender at (704) 348-2725 or by e-mail at npender@centralina.org.

Anson New Tech Principal Chris Stinson is shown doing a Q&A with other educators and administrators in April 2011. Anson New Tech is now a national demonstration site for the New Tech Network.


New Building Offers A Place for Youth to Bloom

STEM Academy Offers Science Students More Leaning Opportunities in Kannapolis

The new STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math) Academy on the campus of A.L. Brown High School is more than just a building to science teacher Diane Crawford, it’s an opportunity.

An opportunity to provide students with more ways to learn. “I think it’s absolutely lovely,” she said. “I’m excited that we have the equipment and the space to work.”

Crawford said the “top of the line” facility will lend itself to projects and laboratory work that would have been impossible before. “I’m excited about the possibilities,” she said.

The nearly 50,000- square-foot building, outfitted with state-of-the-art equipment, is home to 18 courses ranging from Spanish to bioethics this fall.

And Principal Kevin Garay said this is just the beginning. He eventually plans to hire at least two more teachers to expand course offerings. Garay hopes to add one with a background in cell biology and the other to teach international studies.

The $8.1 million STEM Academy is designed to mimic the Core Lab Building at the North Carolina Research Campus. Each floor of the four-story facility is dedicated to a specific concentration.

The second floor currently houses world languages including Latin, French and Spanish. It will also eventually serve as the hub for global studies and the school’s communication classes that include journalism, yearbook and broadcasting.

Life sciences such as biology, allied health and ecology are found on the third floor. The fourth floor is home to physical sciences, including physics, chemistry and engineering.

The basement will serve as a school-based health center. It has an exam room, conference room and office for the school’s full-time nurse, Jenny Haislip.

Garay said between 30 and 40 students per day visit the nurse to receive medication or treatment.

A welcome center for international families will also be housed in the basement, which is about 85 percent complete.

Junior Jess Parker admits she still gets lost in the new building sometimes. “It’s just so big, but I really like it,” she said.

Seniors Natalie Hernandez and Jessica Graham feel the same way, but they both enjoy the extra space. “I love it. There is room for everything,” Hernandez said.

Graham said she’s enjoying all the technology the building has to offer. “It’s really futuristic,” she said.

Senior Kristen Wells agrees. “The technology over there is absolutely amazing,” she said.

Garay said he’s been impressed with the pride students are taking in the facility. “When I talk to the students about it they kind of light up. That shows that it’s really student centered,” he said.

A.L. Brown teachers were enlisted to help with the design of the facility to ensure that it was built around the curriculum.

“We wanted a first-rate facility, but we also wanted it to be designed around students’ needs and I think we accomplished that,” Garay said.

The STEM Academy will allow the school to expand its partnerships with the North Carolina Research Campus.

Freshmen will be given health assessment through the Appalachian State University Human Performance Laboratory.

Jordan Baker’s engineering classes will continue to work with Dr. Carol Cheatham, a child psychologist and neuroscientist at the Nutrition Research Institute, by designing toys for her cognitive development research campus.

More internships for students and teachers will be available on the campus.

The district hosted a grand opening for the STEM Academy from 2 to 4:30 p.m. on Sunday September 25, 2011. A number of guest speakers, including Research Campus founder David Murdock, were on hand during the event. Guests were invited inside to take tours of the building.

“During the tours, we are going to have students doing demonstrations,” Kannapolis City Schools spokeswoman Ellen Boyd said. “We want people to actual see the things that are going on here.”

The Centralina Workforce Development Board and the Centralina Youth Council are strong partners with A.L. Brown High School and Kannapolis City Schools. The Board and Youth Council congratulate them on these outstanding facilities that will help prepare our youth for the careers of the future. For more information on the new building or on the Centralina Youth Council, please contact Natasha Pender at (704) 348-2725 or by e-mail at npender@centralina.org.

Students work on a lab during science class in the new STEM Academy. The 50,000 square-foot building is housing 18 classes this semester.
A.L. Brown seniors Natalie Hernandez and Jessica Graham work together on a lab during honors anatomy and physiology this week. The class is one of 18 housed in the new STEM Academy.


Preparing Leaders for the Future

Union County Public Schools Grows Leaders from Within

Grooming assistant principals to step into the top job at their schools is the focus of a new program at Union County Public Schools (UCPS) called “Growing Leaders From Within,” which is designed to help the transition between assistant principal and principal run smoother.

The concept of Growing Leaders From Within came from UCPS Deputy Superintendent Dr. David Clarke who had been looking for a way to fill the void for aspiring principals left when the PEP program, (Principals Executive Program), disappeared a couple of years ago from lack of funding by the state.

Clarke and Assistant Superintendent Dr. Denise Patterson took the idea to a focus group made up of principals and assistant principals, all who had participated in PEP. Once the idea took form, it was passed before the Union County Leadership Academy, which overwhelmingly approved the concept.

When Ken Hoover, principal at East Union Middle, decided to take on the concept for his Capstone Project, which he needed to complete his doctorate degree, the program took life.

“They thought it would be a good idea,” Hoover said. “I would build the program for our assistant principals who wanted to become principals; try to give them additional training and experience, and time to interact with principals to gain that experience.”

With input from the focus group, new principals, the Leadership Academy and UCPS cabinet staff, Hoover “worked with the topical ideas and models for implementation approved by the Leadership Academy and developed a program that would provide the tools to assist aspiring principals to be ready for the principalship,” Clarke said.

An invitation was sent to elementary, middle and high school assistant principals in May of this year, inviting them to apply for participation in the first cohort, which was limited to10 participants.

Creating the program also addressed the new criteria and changes in the NC Standards for School Executives, which is developed by the State Board of Education. These standards are used to evaluate principals.

“Principals are judged now, not just on their managerial skills, but also on their cultural leadership and instructional leadership, as well,” Hoover said. “The way they look at principals now is much more global. It’s not just, ‘Can you manage a building, unlock the doors, get teachers in, and get schedules done?’ It’s so much more than that. It’s, ‘Can you build professional learning communities?’ ‘Can you be the instructional leader in your building and provide quality feedback to your teachers no matter what grade level or subject they’re teaching?’ ”

The goal of the program is to make certain assistant principals gain some knowledge in those areas. “So when it is time for them to transition into the principalship, they’re better prepared to do that,” Hoover said.

Even if participants don’t move into the principalship in the immediate future, taking the program still has advantages in increasing the assistant principal’s competency level.

“It’s only going to help the schools work more efficiently,” Hoover said.

The Centralina Workforce Development Board and the Centralina Youth Council are proud partners with Union County Public Schools. The Board and the Council are proud to see partners coming up with innovative was to stay on the cutting edge for our youth, our future workforce. For more information on the “Growing Leaders from Within” program or on the Centralina Youth Council, please contact Natasha Pender at (704) 348-2725 or by e-mail at npender@centralina.org.

Pictured are, (seated from left) Ann Salazar, Poplin Elementary; Kim Fisenne, MRHS; Ken Hoover, principal at East Union Middle; Kathleen Richert, PRHS; standing are, (from left) Shannen Bretz, PRMS; Dr. Deborah Whaley, Marvin Elementary; Emily McGinnis, Prospect and Union Elementary; Veronica Robinson, Antioch Elementary; Constance Kelly, Walter Bickett Elementary; Mamie Blevins, Piedmont Middle; and Bryan Lynip, Unionville Elementary.



What's Happening in the Region?

Comings, Goings, Kudos…

  • Mooresville-South Iredell Chamber of Commerce President/CEO Karen A. Shore resigned from her position on September 6, 2011. Shore had been with the Chamber for five years.
  • Dr. Douglas Eason is stepping down as president of Mitchell Community College. He has worked in the education field for 52 years, the last 20 years at Mitchell CC, and will retire on December 31, 2011. Dr. Eason is a former member of the Centralina Workforce Development Board.
  • Dr. Walter Hart, Assistant Superintendent with Rowan-Salisbury Schools has been hired as the new Superintendent of Hickory Public Schools. He will start his new position on Tuesday November 1, 2011. Dr. Hart previously worked with Lincoln County Schools.
  • Cabarrus County Manager John Day has announced that he will step down from his position on Friday September 30, 2011. He will remain on the payroll as a consultant. Deputy County Manager Mike Downs will step in as interim manager until a replacement is found.
  • Steve Eaton, Executive Director of the Partnership for Children of Lincoln and Gaston Counties, has been selected to participate in a statewide early childhood leadership program. He is one of 12 Smart Start leaders from across the state chosen for the Smart Start Leaders’ Collaborative.
  • Deborah Gibson has been relieved of her duties as Executive Director of the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Workforce Development Board. Steve Partridge has been named as the interim director.

    •Michelle Beam has been named manager of the Iredell County JobLink Career Center in Mooresville. Congratulations Michelle!


• Centralina Workforce Development Board meeting
Tuesday October 18, 2011 – 4:30 PM
Rowan-Cabarrus CC – Biotechnology Building – NC Research Campus– Kannapolis

• Allied Health Regional Skills Partnership Meeting
Thursday October 20, 2011 – 11:30 AM – 1:30 PM
Location: Charlotte Allied Health Education Center - Charlotte
Contact: Emily Clamp 704.348.2732

• Stanly County Chamber of Commerce Business Expo 2011
Wednesday October 5, 2011 – 11:00 AM – 4:00 PM
Stanly Regional Medical, Family and Education Center – Albemarle
Contact: Deidra Harwood 704.982.8116

• Mooresville-South Iredell Chamber of Commerce Business Expo 2011
Thursday October 6, 2011 – 11:00 AM – 7:00 PM
Charles Mack Citizen Center - Mooresville

• Strategic Visioning for Downtown Communities
Thursday October 6, 2011 – 5:30 PM – 8:30 PM
Eli’s – 152 W. Main Street in Albemarle
Pre-registration Required: 704-991-0192

• Vocational Rehabilitation Employer Appreciation
Wednesday October 26, 2011 – 10:00 AM – 12:00 PM
Small Business Center in Albemarle – The Groves
Contact: Mary Walls mary.walls@dhhs.nc.gov

• Union County Job Ready Partnership Meeting
Wednesday October 26, 2011 – 12:00 PM
Turbomeca – Monroe
Contact: Linda Smith 704.289.5223

• Cabarrus Regional Chamber of Commerce’s Business Showcase
Thursday October 27, 2011 – 2:00 PM – 7:00 PM
First Assembly’s The Village – Suites 15 & 30 – Concord
Contact: Tina 704-260-8126

• Resume Clinic
Thursday October 6, 2011 – 2:00 PM
Rowan-Cabarrus Community College – NCRC Kannapolis
More Information: 704.216.3500

• Identifying Your Career Options
Monday October 10, 2011 – 9:00 AM
Rowan-Cabarrus Community College – NCRC Kannapolis
More Information: 704.216.3500

• Stand Out from the Competition
Monday October 10, 2011 – 6:00 PM
Rowan-Cabarrus Community College – NCRC Kannapolis
More Information: 704.216.3500

• Resume Clinic
Tuesday October 11, 2011 – 9:00 AM
Rowan-Cabarrus Community College – NCRC Kannapolis
More Information: 704.216.3500

• Interview Techniques
Tuesday October 11, 2011 – 6:00 PM
Rowan-Cabarrus Community College – NCRC Kannapolis
More Information: 704.216.3500

• It’s Not Who You Know, It’s Who You Meet
Wednesday October 12, 2011 – 9:00 AM
Rowan-Cabarrus Community College – NCRC Kannapolis
More Information: 704.216.3500

• Looking for Work with a Criminal Record
Thursday October 13, 2011 – 9:00 AM
Rowan-Cabarrus Community College – NCRC Kannapolis
More Information: 704.216.3500

• Looking for Work at 50+
Saturday October 15, 2011 – 9:00 AM
Rowan-Cabarrus Community College – NCRC Kannapolis
More Information: 704.216.3500

• Identifying Your Career Options
Wednesday October 19, 2011 – 11:00 AM
Rowan-Cabarrus Community College – NCRC Kannapolis
More Information: 704.216.3500

• Resume Clinic
Thursday October 20, 2011 – 9:00 AM
Rowan-Cabarrus Community College – NCRC Kannapolis
More Information: 704.216.3500

• Understanding Credit Reports in a Work Search
Monday October 24, 2011 – 6:00 PM
Rowan-Cabarrus Community College – NCRC Kannapolis
More Information: 704.216.3500

• Resume Clinic
Tuesday October 25, 2011 – 9:00 AM
Rowan-Cabarrus Community College – NCRC Kannapolis
More Information: 704.216.3500

• Letter Writing for the Job Seeker
Tuesday October 25, 2011 – 11:00 AM
Rowan-Cabarrus Community College – NCRC Kannapolis
More Information: 704.216.3500

• Looking for Work at 50+
Tuesday October 25, 2011 – 6:00 PM
Rowan-Cabarrus Community College – NCRC Kannapolis
More Information: 704.216.3500

• Online Job Hunting
Wednesday October 26, 2011 – 9:00 AM
Rowan-Cabarrus Community College – NCRC Kannapolis
More Information: 704.216.3500

• Stand Out from the Competition
Thursday October 27, 2011 – 9:00 AM
Rowan-Cabarrus Community College – NCRC Kannapolis
More Information: 704.216.3500

• Interview Techniques
Thursday October 27, 2011 – 11:00 AM
Rowan-Cabarrus Community College – NCRC Kannapolis
More Information: 704.216.3500

The North Carolina Workforce Development Training Center Training offers many great training sessions for every workforce development professional. The Center can even do online trainings for you and your colleagues. Some of the great training sessions include: Keeping Your Cool (When Others are HOT!), Assessment: The Foundation of Case Management, Delivering Excellent Customer Service, and Youth Services: A Variety of Topics. These are just some of the great training sessions they can put together for your team. So give them a call and see what they can do for you! Contact Robin Broome at (919) 306-1819 or visit their website for more information at www.ncwdtc.com.

• Career Development Facilitator Programs
Wednesday, December 7, 2011
Cost: $525 (covers tuition, manual and interactive DVD)
Register Online: www.ncwia.com


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