Golden Leaf Scholarship Application Period Open Now For 2024-25

Applications are being accepted now for the 2024-25 Golden LEAF Colleges and Universities scholarships, which assists incoming college freshmen and transfer students pay for school.

There are more than 200 scholarships that will be awarded, according to information from the office of N.C. Rep. Frank Sossamon, whose District 32 includes Vance and most of Granville counties. Students in both counties are eligible to apply based on criteria that include being rural counties, economically distressed and tobacco dependent.

The scholarships could be as much as $14,000 – that breaks down to $3,500 a year for four years – for incoming freshmen attending a North Carolina college or university. Students transferring from a N.C. community college can get $3,500 a year for up to three years.

Students must be a graduating North Carolina high school senior or a currently enrolled North Carolina community college transfer student, enrolling full-time in the fall 2024 semester at a participating North Carolina public or private college or university. If a student intends to return to a rural North Carolina county after graduation, this can increase his or her chances of earning the scholarship.

Applicants must fill out the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) and demonstrate financial need as determined by the application process; have a cumulative GPA of no less than 2.5; and be a resident of a rural North Carolina county that is economically distressed and/or tobacco dependent.

For more information, visit or


VGCC Franklin Campus Site Of Training Hub Designed To Bridge ‘Digital Divide’

-Information courtesy of VGCC Public Information Officer Courtney Cissel

Residents of Franklin County and other surrounding communities will soon have a new resource to help them succeed in an increasingly digital world.

DigitalBridge, a digital workforce development initiative of Wake Forest-based Wireless Research Center, has partnered with Vance-Granville Community College to launch a new training hub at the college’s Louisburg campus. Together, the institutions will bridge the digital divide for underserved local communities through accessible technology and training.

“We are thrilled to collaborate with Vance-Granville Community College to support our communities,” said Erica Hixon, DigitalBridge executive director. “We are proud to join the community of resources to assist students and employers.”

DigitalBridge’s model is designed to deliver fast-track certifications and connect people directly to job opportunities. The initiative offers more than 130 courses and certifications for digital-skills training and certifications, provided at no cost to residents. Participants receive digital training, coaching, and job pairing matched to individual goals; in-person or remote learning at their own pace; and assistance from a career coach to guide their efforts.

Partnering with DigitalBridge is a natural extension of the college’s commitment to support residents of its four-county service area. While a degree or similar credential can open doors of career opportunity for many people, others might be better served through different forms of education, such as those provided by DigitalBridge.

“VGCC actively seeks out new ways and new partners to reduce the opportunity gap in our communities,” said Dr. Rachel Desmarais, VGCC president. “Digital literacy and technology skills are still areas where we see those opportunity gaps. We are excited to partner with DigitalBridge to support opportunity to better jobs in our service area.”

Starting mid-July, DigitalBridge representatives will be available at the Franklin Campus open computer lab each week Tuesdays through Thursdays from 10 a.m. – 2 p.m. The new partnership will officially launch Thursday, July 13 with a ribbon-cutting ceremony at VGCC’s Franklin Campus, located at 8100 NC 56 Highway in Louisburg. In addition to representatives from the college and DigitalBridge, local leaders and government officials are invited to attend.


WRC is an independent nonprofit founded in 2010 to serve as a catalyst for collaborative innovation and technology-led economic development to improve communities. Today, WRC’s core initiatives are designed to improve wireless technologies, accelerate technology startups, support entrepreneurs and spur economic development through education programs and digital job skills training. For more information, visit and

For more information about VGCC and its programs, visit


VGCC Adds NC Wesleyan As Transfer Option To Complete 4-Year Degree

-information courtesy of VGCC Public Information Officer Courtney Cissel

Students who complete their two-year degree have another option when choosing where to continue on the path to a four-year university degree: North Carolina Wesleyan University. The two schools recently entered into an agreement that will allow VGCC students to participate in Wesley Works, a transfer program that offers benefits to students who want to obtain a college diploma.

VGCC President Dr. Rachel Desmarais shared optimism about the partnership. “By this new agreement with NC Wesleyan University, I am pleased that VGCC graduates will have more options than ever to continue their path to a four-year degree,” Demarais stated in a press release.

The agreement will enhance and expand the educational opportunities of Associate in Arts, Associate in Fine Arts, Associate in Science, and Associate in Applied Science graduates by offering VGCC graduates access to the benefits of the Wesleyan Works program, pre-admission advising, generous transfer credit, and a clear definition of the transfer of courses from VGCC to NC Wesleyan. This Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) allows VGCC Associate in Applied Science students to transfer an additional 15 hours of general education credits for a total of 75 transfer credits.

“We’re proud to add Vance-Granville Community College to our array of partners we have transfer agreements with. They join over 40 other colleges and community colleges with seamless transfer pathways to NC Wesleyan University following completion of a two-year degree,” stated NCWU President Dr. Evan D. Duff. “Through our Wesleyan Works program, all AA/AS/AAS community college graduates gain automatic acceptance to NCWU with no application fee and the ability to transfer in up to 75 credit hours. This smooth transfer process allows community college graduates a simple path to making their education attainable in order to accomplish their goals in life.”

Students who graduate from VGCC and transfer under this agreement may select any of NC Wesleyan’s programs of study or may transfer to the college’s Adult and Professional Studies program, taking advantage of the Wesleyan Works program. Students are required to maintain a minimum GPA of 2.0 and be in good academic standing. The agreement brings NC Wesleyan within the reach of VGCC students who may not have otherwise been able to attend the college.

Wesleyan Works is a transfer program designed for community college students who plan to continue their education at NC Wesleyan. Students who participate in Wesleyan Works will have access to academic advising and financial aid counseling through NC Wesleyan, as well as access to events on the college’s main campus. The program is ideal for students who would like to attend NC Wesleyan’s evening or online programs.

North Carolina Wesleyan University, a private institution affiliated with the United Methodist Church, prepares students for professional advancement, life-long learning and responsible participation in their communities. NC Wesleyan University provides a highly personalized education in a dynamic and challenging environment. With students from all over the United States and more than 40 different countries, NC Wesleyan is a small college with a big taste for cultural diversity. To learn more about either school, visit or

L.B. Yancey Students Participate In Career Day And Expo

When you’re a fifth grader, it’s tough to visualize where you may see yourself in the future, but thanks to L.B. Yancey Elementary’s Career Day and Expo, but at least one young person’s eyes were opened to the possibility of becoming a photographer when she grows up.

The “I Am Tomorrow” career expo was held in the school gym on Mar. 22. Students dressed up as doctors, chefs, police officers and more as a way to share information and interests about different careers.

Staff members joined in the fun and parents were invited to participate as well as the children – a much livelier event than last year’s, which had to take place virtually because of COVID-19 restrictions on gathering.

Numerous career professionals set up displays to help the students learn about a variety of career opportunities, from being a barber to a meteorologist. On the list of specially invited professionals was:

  • Vance County Schools’ Center for Innovation Robotics Team
  • Spectrum News 1 Meteorologist, Vernon Turner
  • Maria Parham Primary Care Physician, Dr. Gary Smith
  • Fitness Trainer, Jessica Rice-Hawkins
  • Entrepreneur, Jinell Cheek of Nellie C Photography
  • Barber, Richard Terry
  • Licensed Funeral Director, Joshua Hicks
  • Musician, Justen Ward
  • Entrepreneur, Taylor Evans with Cricut Personalizations
  • Representatives from the Walmart Distribution Center
  • Vance County Sheriff’s Office

The day started with a parade, and students walked the school’s hallways while Dolly Parton’s “9 To 5” filled the air. Other students lined the hallways,armed with handmade posters with inspirational messages to cheer on the parade participants.

Career Day Expo Chairperson Alicia Clarke said the goal was to allow students to see different professionals as a way to motivate them to set goals for themselves and then working toward achieving those goals. “If this Career Day was any indication of what is to come, then the world will be in good hands,” Clarke stated.

L.B. Yancey Principal Dr. Shannon Bullock agreed. “The school’s Career Day and Expo was a very successful event. The students and parents were so excited to see all the different career choices provided for them. Students were able to see successful individuals from Henderson and other nearby cities, and know that they are able to achieve anything they set their mind to.”

Mar. 16 Parent Engagement Session Designed To Help Ease Fears, Worries In New School Year

Whether it’s moving from a preschool classroom to the big world of kindergarten or changing to a new school, Vance County Schools is hosting an event to help parents with students making any transition within the school system.

This parent engagement session will be held Thursday, Mar. 16, beginning at 6 p.m. in the Atrium area of STEM Early High School, located at the Center for Innovation, 219 Charles St., said VCS Director of Communication & Marketing Aarika Sandlin.

Visit to learn more.

Local News Audio

Noon News 12-8-20 Covid19 News; Enhanced Rail; Granville Co. Schools; VGCC Degree Program

Stories include:
– Latest Covid19 statistics

–  community testing event

– enhanced rail service possibly coming to Henderson

– Granville County Schools

– VGCC partner with Elizabeth City State for degree program

For full details and audio click play


Cherrelle Lawrence

VGCC Names Lawrence Dean of Corporate Learning & Professional Development


-Press Release, Vance-Granville Community College

Vance-Granville Community College recently named Cherrelle Lawrence as its new Dean of Corporate Learning & Professional Development. In this role, Dean Lawrence will identify and develop corporate training and external professional development offerings for companies, local government agencies and civic organizations.

Lawrence will also serve as the lead administrator (Dean) for the VGCC Franklin Campus and work with Franklin Campus faculty and staff to ensure successful implementation of the mission of the satellite campus.

Vance-Granville Community College recently named Cherrelle Lawrence as its new Dean of Corporate Learning & Professional Development. (Photo courtesy VGCC)

Lawrence is a certified Global Career Development Facilitator & Trainer (GCDF) and has worked in Career Services & Employer Relations in higher education and the non-profit sector for over five years.

Lawrence most recently served as Assistant Director of Employer Relations at the UNC Kenan-Flagler Business School. During her time there, she led the Undergraduate Business Program’s Diversity & Inclusion initiatives and fostered strong working relationships with over 200 companies across a variety of sectors.

Prior to working at UNC-Chapel Hill, Lawrence served on the TAACCCT & TechHire grant teams at VGCC, where she built relationships with local companies and directly engaged with VGCC students, staff and faculty.

“It has always been my vision and plan to grow in Higher Education, with a specific interest in Training & Development,” Dean Lawrence said. “I look forward to being able to share my expertise, learn from others and ultimately help cultivate our Workforce and Community Engagement Department.”

Lawrence holds a master’s in Business Administration from East Carolina University and a bachelor’s in Business Education & Marketing from North Carolina Agricultural & Technical State University.

“We are glad to welcome Cherrelle Lawrence back to VGCC in this new capacity, and we are excited about the leadership she will provide to help our area’s employers succeed through training and to continue the outstanding services and programs available at our Franklin Campus,” said Dr. Jerry Edmonds, VGCC’s Vice President of Workforce Development and Community Engagement.

VCS High School Athletic Schedule

Vance Co. Schools Begins Staggered Phase-In of High School Athletics

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-Information courtesy Vance County Schools

Vance County Schools will permit a staggered phase-in of high school athletics beginning the week of November 2, 2020, as outlined in the schedule included below. This phase-in is consistent with expectations outlined by the NC High School Athletic Association and endorsed by the Vance County Board of Education.

Student-athletes involved in volleyball, cross country, cheerleading, basketball, football or swimming, along with their parent/guardian, MUST attend a required virtual orientation meeting via Zoom on Wednesday, November 4, 2020, at 6:30 p.m. All high school students will receive a zoom link in their school email. This meeting will provide important information for our student-athletes and their parents.

Should you have any questions, please contact the High School Athletic Director, Joe Sharrow at (252) 430-6000 or by email at The latest information will be updated on the VCHS website (

A decision regarding middle school athletics will be announced in the near future.


VGCC Golf Tournament Brings in More Than $110,000

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-Press Release, Vance-Granville Community College

Vance-Granville Community College recently held its annual Endowment Fund Golf Tournament at the Henderson Country Club, raising more than $110,000. Proceeds will help fund scholarships for deserving students and support the mission of the college.

Delayed from its traditional spring date due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the 36th annual tournament was presented by Gupton Services, Inc., of Henderson. This year’s fundraiser brought the total amount generated by all VGCC golf tournaments since 1985 to more than $1.2 million.

“We are extremely grateful for the community’s continuing support of VGCC, as expressed through yet another successful tournament,” said VGCC President Dr. Rachel Desmarais. “Our region’s civic and business leaders know that our community college is a key driver of workforce and economic development.”

“Thanks to the contributions of numerous golfers and sponsors, our Endowment Fund will have more resources to help students continue their education so that they can prepare for careers and enjoy a brighter future,” added VGCC Endowment Director Eddie Ferguson.

A total of 128 golfers played this year, with 64 competing on Monday, Sept. 14, and the other 64 playing in a separate round on Tuesday, Sept. 15.

In the Monday round, the MR Williams team of Chris Cheever, Dennis Lambert, Daniel Faulkner and Tyler Beauchamp took home the “first net” trophy. The Golden Skillet team of David Fairey, Steven Wright, Steve Wright and Steve Wright won “second net.” The “first gross” trophy went to the Novozymes team of Fred Reikowsky, James Massey, Vinny Veruto and Mark Lasher. The Mast Drug team of Andrew Flye, Jan Fletcher, Rusty Crocker and Kirt Meadows took home “second gross.”

In the Tuesday round, the Salvation Army team (sponsored by Gupton Services) of Derrick Smith, Chad Langley, Wes MacLawhorn and Danny Wilkerson finished with the “first net” score. The Carolina Commonwealth team of Kenny Abbott, David Farrie, Mike Faulkner and Tommy Ross won “second net.” The “first gross” trophy went to the Institutional Interiors team of Tim Hill, Mike Baskett, Billy Stanton and Macy Foster. The Carolina Sunrock team of Blake Montgomery, Zach Satterwhite, Greg Johnson and Eric Royster took home “second gross.”

P.J. Schleiger took the longest-drive prize on Hole 1 on Monday, and Trey Watkins won the closest-to-the-pin prize on Hole 11.

Danny Wilkerson had the longest drive on Tuesday, while Greg Johnson won the closest-to-the-pin prize.

Numerous companies and individuals supported the VGCC tournament as sponsors, along with presenting sponsor Gupton Services, Inc.

Premier Sponsors included Henderson Fruit and Produce, Glen Raven, Wester Insurance Agency, Durham Coca-Cola, First Citizens Wealth, Charles Boyd Chevrolet Buick GMC, Duke Energy, Private Wealth Management of N.C., Novozymes North America, Inc., Universal Leaf North America U.S., Inc., Robling Medical, Union Bank, Bridgestone Bandag Tire, Carolina Commonwealth, Rose Oil Company, Inc., CertainTeed, Altec, Granville Health System, John Nelms, Jr., MR Williams, Kilian Engineering, Mast Drug Company and Coldwell Banker Advantage.

Platinum Sponsors included Core & Main, Variety Stores, Inc., Institutional Interiors, Henderson Collegiate and Oxford Prep.

Gold Sponsors included Winston International, Golden Skillet and Carolina Sunrock.

Contributors included Mako Medical Laboratories, Joe and Betty Jo Hamme, Newton Instrument Company, Jim Beck, Tru-Green Landscaping, Jim Crawford, ARC3 Gases, Dr. Ben Currin, B & R Properties & Development, Judge Henry and Mamie Banks, Donald Seifert, Sarah Baskerville and Walmart Distribution.

Green Sponsors included Greystone Concrete Products, Backyard Retreat, Barnett Real Properties, Inc., RFR Metal Fabrication, Wake Electric Membership Corp., Nick & Sons Truck Repair, Vescom North America, JM White Funeral Home, Watkins Plumbing, HG Reynolds, NT Techno, May & Place, Dill Air Controls Products and International Paper.

Tee Box Sponsors included AAA Gas & Appliance Company, Hight Warehouse, Encore Tech, Comfort Zone, Granville County EDC, Hicks & Wrenn, Mosely Plumbing Company, Inc., WOW Wash on Wheels, Sunrise Biscuits of Oxford, Century 21 Country Knolls Realty, Inc., One Source Document Solutions, Carolina Country Snacks, Banzet, Thompson, Styers & May, City Tire, Inc., Cross & Currin Attorneys, Southern Educational Systems, Vance Construction Company, Stainback, Satterwhite & Zollicoffer, PLLC, Phillips Dorsey Thomas Waters & Brafford, P.A., Whitco Bug Warriors, Robco, Frazco, Inc. Insurance – Real Estate, Marsha J. Nelson, Brame Specialty, William L. Stark and Company, Dave Carver, Pete Smith’s Tire and Quick Lube, Dabney Drive Animal Hospital, Alex Drake, DDS, PA, Sherman & Boddie, Inc., Riggs-Harrod, Ahner Security, H & W Investments, Henderson-Vance EDC, Benchmark Community Bank, Medical Arts Pharmacy, Ag Carolina Farm Credit, Hall’s Floor Fashions, Inc., Will Jakes-Edward Jones, Fred’s Towing & Transport, Inc., Professional Pharmacy, C & P Body Shop, Mack Choplin, Postal Plus Business Center, Waste Industries, MPACT Solutions, LLC and Eddie and Debra Ferguson.

Each year, the golf tournament is the major fundraising event for the VGCC Endowment Fund, through which more than 9,700 scholarships have been awarded to students since 1982. Scholarships have been established by individuals, industries, businesses, civic groups, churches and the college’s faculty and staff.

For more information, call (252) 738-3409.


VGCC Awarded Funds for Continuing Education Scholarships

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-Press Release, Vance-Granville Community College

Vance-Granville Community College recently received just over $188,000 from the Governor’s Emergency Education Relief (GEER) Fund to help local residents obtain job training. 

The GEER Fund, created as part of the federal CARES Act, will provide scholarships for eligible VGCC continuing education students pursuing short-term workforce training programs within certain pathways that will lead to state or industry-recognized credentials. Students can receive up to $750 in assistance per course. Scholarships can potentially help cover the cost of tuition, fees, books, supplies, credentialing tests, transportation, or childcare. 

At VGCC, the eligible pathways include the following programs: 

  • Basic Law Enforcement Training (BLET), 
  • BioWork Process Technician,
  • Electronic Health Records,
  • EMT-Basic,
  • EMT-Paramedic,
  • Heavy Equipment Operator,
  • Healthcare Billing and Coding,
  • HVAC – Cooling,
  • HVAC – Refrigeration,
  • Introduction to Welding,
  • Nurse Aide, Levels 1 and 2,
  • Phlebotomy,
  • Production Tech, and
  • Truck Driver Training.

VGCC officials may add more programs to the list, based on local workforce needs.

“We are excited about the opportunities that the GEER Fund will open up for many students, especially those who have lost their jobs and suffered financially due to the pandemic,” said Dr. Jerry Edmonds, vice president of Workforce Development and Community Engagement for VGCC. “There are jobs available and many employers need talented workers, so now is a great time to retrain and gain new skills, so that you can prepare for a new career or advance in your chosen field.”

Governor Roy Cooper announced the initial allocations of North Carolina’s GEER Fund in August. At that time, Bill Carver, the interim President of the North Carolina Community College System, said, “North Carolina Community Colleges are uniquely positioned to offer short term workforce preparation to assist in the State’s economic recovery. This funding will be used for targeted programs providing cost-effective, high-quality opportunities for North Carolinians wanting credentials leading to career advancement.” 

For more information, contact Dawn Michelle Tucker, Dean of Continuing Education & College + Career Readiness, at (252) 738-3288 or