VGCC schedules Sewing class at Main Campus

Vance-Granville Community College will soon offer a “Beginning Sewing” class on the college’s Main Campus in Vance County. The course, taught by Carol Montague of Oxford, is scheduled to be held on Monday evenings from 6-9 p.m., Sept. 11 through Nov. 27, in room 5203 (Building 5).

Sewing has always been a part of Carol Montague’s life. From the time she was very young, she remembers taking naps under her father’s work table. He was a canvas awning maker, cutting and sewing his work on a large, room-sized table. In 2002, she opened her business, called Hen and Chicks Sewing School. Both adults and children have benefitted from her classes, taught at her home and at the Oxford Housing Authority. She has also held numerous fashion shows at assisted living facilities, churches, her home, and the Oxford Housing Authority. Montague enjoys having her students give back to the community by donating hand-made items to the Durham Ronald McDonald House, making dresses for children for Haiti and comfort caps for cancer patients.

Montague believes in equipping the current generation with skills that have become too often ignored. “The value of sewing for yourself and others comes in many forms,” she said. “Unique and personalized gifts, clothing alteration, hard-to-find modest clothing, wearability, and one-of-a-kind clothing and crafts are just a few of the many advantages of learning to sew.”

Sewing is a life-skill, she added. “Adults learn drafting design skills by making or adjusting their own patterns, cutting skills, the value of precision work and how to combine color,” Montague said. “Students will be able to identify quality craftsmanship in ready-to-wear garments and spot hastily-made clothing fashioned out of cheap materials. They will be able to repair purchased items that need ‘fixing.’ Many have made a business out of the skill of sewing.”

The cost of the class is $80. Students will need to provide their own materials, a list of which will be provided. The deadline to register is Sept. 4.

Registration can be completed online at or at any VGCC campus. For more information, contact Gail Clark at (252) 738-3385 or


VGCC students inducted into NC A&T Nursing partnership program

GREENSBORO — Eleven Vance-Granville Community College students were formally inducted into the North Carolina Piedmont “Regionally Increasing Baccalaureate Nurses” (RIBN) program in a ceremony on Aug. 4 at North Carolina A&T State University’s Union Square Campus in Greensboro. RIBN is a partnership involving the university, VGCC, Davidson County Community College and Guilford Technical Community College.

At the induction ceremony, the A&T School of Nursing welcomed students from VGCC and the other community colleges who will be simultaneously enrolled at the university. RIBN students earn associate’s degrees in nursing over three years (while also taking A&T courses online) and then continue for one year of additional courses at A&T required for the Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) degree.

This year’s inductees from VGCC included Caliegh Katz and Sarah Riley, both of Creedmoor; Chiatyra Turner of Ebony, Va.; Henrry Reboccar-Miguel and Alexis Williams, both of Franklinton; Nigoria Alston and Dawson Peoples, both of Henderson; Rachel Spall of Kittrell; Jessica Morris of Oxford; Kati Hand of Wilton; and Joshua Miller of Zebulon.

Erica Jastrow, the Nursing department chair for VGCC, pinned a “RIBN ribbon” on each of the college’s student inductees as part of the ceremony, while Academic/Career Coach Seletha Pherribo read a brief biography of each one.

With 11 out of the 18 students selected for this year’s cohort, VGCC had more inductees than the other two community colleges in the partnership, combined. In 2016, the first year of the RIBN partnership, the initial cohort consisted of three students, one from each community college.

The North Carolina Piedmont RIBN initiative is one of nine such partnerships that have been launched in North Carolina since 2008 under the direction of the Foundation for Nursing Excellence (FFNE) to increase the educational preparation of North Carolina’s nursing workforce.

VGCC Interim Vice President of Academic Affairs Dr. Levy Brown was on hand for the ceremony and made brief remarks. “Students, we are very proud of you for taking this huge step,” Brown said. He encouraged the inductees to maintain their current levels of “enthusiasm, commitment and persistence” in order to be successful.

In closing remarks, Dr. Terry Ward, director of the A&T School of Nursing, applauded the students and said she was excited by the diversity that they represent. She also recalled that she started her own education at a community college, but there was nothing like RIBN at that time to help create a straightforward pathway to completing a bachelor’s degree. “We have developed a program which will allow you to move down this path of higher education seamlessly, setting you up for the awesome success that you desire,” Ward said. Using the metaphor of tying a ribbon, she added, “Today represents you tying yourselves together with us and with your colleagues to meet the needs in our communities for nurses. You are the future of nursing.”

In addition to RIBN, VGCC has a partnership with A&T to allow graduates of its Associate Degree Nursing program to transition easily to the university’s four-year Bachelor’s program. For more information about Nursing at VGCC and bachelor’s degree options, contact academic/career coach Seletha Pherribo at (252) 738-3518 or instructor Heather Wilson at (252) 738-3393.


Computer-aided design course offered at VGCC

Vance-Granville Community College has scheduled a “CAD with Solid Edge” course, to be held Monday through Thursday, Aug. 29 through Oct. 24, from 9 a.m. until noon, on the college’s Main Campus in Vance County. Grant funding from the NC TechHire program can help eligible area residents pay for this training.

Solid Edge is a Computer-Aided Design (CAD) software program, produced by Siemens PLM Software, which is used in a variety of industries, including advanced manufacturing.

This course introduces students to basic three-dimensional solid modeling and design software. Topics include basic design, creation, editing, rendering and analysis of solid models, and creation of multi-view drawings. Upon completion, students should be able to use design techniques to create, edit, render and generate a multi-view drawing.

Solid Edge is a portfolio of affordable, easy-to-use software tools that address all aspects of the product development process – 3D design, simulation, manufacturing, data management and more, thanks to a growing ecosystem of apps. Solid Edge combines the speed and simplicity of direct modeling with the flexibility and control of parametric design – made possible with synchronous technology. With Solid Edge, students can learn to create and print 2D drawings from 3D solid models and send solid models to a 3D printer.

The instructor for the course is Peter M. Robinson.

Students may become certified through Siemens upon passing the credentialing exam.

The cost of this course is $187 plus the cost of the textbook and the exam.

The course is approved for funding through the NC TechHire grant that VGCC received last year as part of a consortium of four community colleges. Area residents between the ages of 17-29 may qualify for grant funding, which can pay for registration fees, course fees, and certification fees.

Registration can be completed online at The deadline to register is Aug. 22.

For more information, contact Sara Lloyd at 252-738-3433 or


VGCC Culinary program moves to new scheduling format

The Vance-Granville Community College Culinary Arts program is changing the way it schedules core courses when the fall semester begins on Aug. 14. Culinary courses will now be taught in eight-week sessions rather than in the traditional 16-week semester format.

“One benefit of the eight-week format is that our students will have more concentrated time in each specific lab,” explained VGCC Culinary Arts Program Head/instructor Chef Teresa Davis. Even though each individual course will be completed in fewer weeks than under the former schedule, the amount of instructional time spent in each course will be the same. A baking class might meet for three hours each week instead of one hour, for example, allowing students to continue their training rather than waiting several days between classes.

“We think that this schedule should make it easier for many students to schedule their classes around their jobs and other responsibilities, along with any Work-Based Learning opportunities that they may have,” Davis added.

Four courses will be offered during the fall semester’s first eight-week mini-term, from Aug. 14 through Oct. 11: Sanitation & Safety (CUL-110), Baking I (CUL-160), Culinary Skills II (CUL-240) and Pastry & Confections (CUL-280).

Then, two other courses will be offered from Oct. 12 through Dec. 11: Culinary Skills I (CUL-140) and Global Cuisines (CUL-230).

The Culinary Arts degree program, based at the Masonic Home for Children at Oxford, prepares students to assume positions as trained culinary professionals in a variety of settings, including full-service restaurants, hotels, resorts, clubs, catering operations, contract foodservice, and health care facilities. In addition to the associate degree, VGCC offers certificates in “Basic Baking” and “Restaurant Hospitality.” Eligible high school students can enroll in Basic Baking through the Career & College Promise program.

For more information about the Culinary Arts program, contact Chef Teresa Davis at or (919) 690-0312.

Recent VGCC Culinary Arts graduate Hayya Wright of Louisburg prepares a dish in the kitchen at the Masonic Home for Children at Oxford, where the program is based. (VGCC photo)


VGCC Pharmacy Technology students train foster parents

Students in the Pharmacy Technology program at Vance-Granville Community College recently helped provide important training to Granville County foster parents.

Under the supervision of Pharmacy Technology Program Head Dr. Erica Fleming, students conducted medication management training, which is a state requirement for family foster home licensing, at the Granville County Department of Social Services (DSS). In such training, foster parents learn about understanding prescription labels, administering drugs, record-keeping, medication disposal, medication storage, psychotropic medications and medication errors. 

“VGCC offered an excellent training opportunity,” said LaVerne Smith, licensing and adoptions social worker for Granville County DSS. “The presentation was very informative and the handouts and visuals were excellent. It addressed all areas that our families need to know. This resource will be a great addition to our training repertoire. We are hoping to work in partnership with the Vance-Granville Community College Pharmacy Program to continue Medication Management training on a yearly basis.”

Fleming said that the partnership with Granville County DSS not only helped local foster parents, and in turn, foster children, but also formed part of the VGCC students’ study of community pharmacy practice.

For more information on the VGCC Pharmacy Technology program, call Dr. Fleming at (252) 738-3482.

From left, VGCC Pharmacy Technology student Tamika Everett of Creedmoor, Kristen Honaker of Henderson, Lesli Miranda of Henderson, Licensing and Adoptions Social Worker LaVerne Smith of Granville County DSS, program head Dr. Erica Fleming, Emily Adcock of Oxford and Ashley Hobgood of Henderson.

VGCC Franklin Campus salutes Child Care Center graduates

Six new graduates of the Child Care Center on Vance-Granville Community College’s Franklin County Campus were honored in a ceremony on July 12 as they prepared to enter kindergarten. The students were Cody Collier of Henderson; Arianna Abbott, Colton Leonard, Joshua Stallings and Aiden Zalewski, all of Louisburg; and Chase Snelling of Youngsville.

Welcoming remarks were provided by Bobbie Jo May, the dean of the Franklin County Campus. She thanked and applauded the staff of the five-star center, and said that the VGCC mission of educating, inspiring and supporting a diverse community of learners to achieve success starts at the pre-school level. “Your children have developed a love of learning here,” May told the assembled family members. “Our staff’s patient instruction and love for these children have helped to turn them into strong, confident kindergarten students.”

Child Care Center manager Michelle Patterson Jones and child care center teacher Teresa Gallatin presented the children with diplomas. Jones also handed out unique “personality certificates” to the students.

Abbott was honored with certificates for “Creativity” and for being a “Math Monster.” Leonard received the “Reading” and “Lawyer” awards. Zalewski was presented with certificates labeled “Enthusiastic Learner” and “Wild Kratts” (after the educational television series about animals and the environment). Stallings was named a “Peace Maker” and a “Creative Thinker” and received a certificate for “Giant Improvement.” Collier received the “Active Athlete” and “Most Dramatic” awards. Snelling was recognized for being “Quiet as a Mouse” and the “Academic Whisperer.”

Lila Johnson of Louisburg, a younger student at the center, served as marshal for the graduation, carrying the American flag as the students processed and recessed.

With the departure of the graduates, spaces for several children are currently available. Parents from among the general public can enroll their children there, as can parents who are VGCC students or employees. For more information, call Michelle Patterson Jones at (919) 496-1567.


Watercolor class offered at VGCC Main Campus

Artist Stephen Filarsky of Franklinton will teach a Watercolor class at Vance-Granville Community College’s Main Campus this fall. The class is scheduled for Tuesdays from 9:15 a.m. until 12:15 p.m., Sept. 5 through Dec. 12, in room 5224 (Building 5).

While Filarksy will be concentrating on watercolor techniques, he will also be instructing students in whatever additional medium in which they would like to work.

Filarsky has painted watercolor portraits and landscapes professionally for 25 years but has been an artist since he was in high school. In college, he said he “studied Architectural Engineering and Drafting, but changed directions and learned and worked at gold leaf and gilding, hand lettering and design.”

Filarsky has taught “plein air” (painting outdoors) workshops in Virginia, South Carolina and North Carolina, along with workshops for Jerry’s Artarama and Art of the Carolinas. He currently gives private lessons and occasional workshops at his studio. Filarsky is a graduate of VGCC’s NC REAL Professional Craft Artists Entrepreneurship program.

The cost of the VGCC watercolor course is $100, which works out to less than $2.50 per hour of instruction. The deadline to register is Aug. 29. Registration can be completed online at or at any VGCC campus. For more information, contact Gail Clark at (252) 738-3385 or



VGCC Completes Renovation of Histotechnology Lab

A laboratory has been renovated to house the new Histotechnology program on Vance-Granville Community College’s Main Campus, the VGCC Board of Trustees was informed at its Monday, July 17, bi-monthly meeting.

The renovation, which cost $15,230, was part of a project covering miscellaneous repairs and renovations on the college campus between Henderson and Oxford, according to Trustee Donald C. Seifert, Sr., chair of the board’s Building Committee.

The Bioprocess Technology laboratory that was previously located in Building 8 was retrofitted to house the health sciences curriculum program. The Bioprocess program has moved to the Franklin County Campus.

The Histotechnology program prepares students for the medical laboratory field. The two-year associate’s degree Histotechnology program provides students the knowledge and skills necessary to prepare tissue specimens for microscopic examination using various stains and dyes to identify tissue and cell structures in medical laboratories. Course work covers scientific concepts related to laboratory testing, microscopy and quality assurance. Graduates may be eligible to apply to take the American Society for Clinical Pathology Board of Certification national examination.

In other Building Committee updates, Seifert said roofing replacement is progressing on Building 6 on the Main Campus, and repairs and the resealing of the parking lots at South Campus are expected to be complete by the end of July.

Board Officers

Trustee Danny W. Wright of Henderson was re-elected as the chair of the board, Trustee Herb Gregory of Oxford was re-elected as vice-chair, and Trustee Deborah F. Brown of Henderson was re-elected as secretary after nominations from a committee chaired by Trustee L. Opie Frazier, Jr.

North Carolina Ninth District Court Judge Henry Banks, who is working part-time after his recent retirement, swore in Trustee Brown for a third four-year term on the board. Brown was appointed by the Vance County Board of Commissioners. She first joined the Board of Trustees in 2009 and will serve though 2021.

Moment of Silence

At the start of the meeting, Trustee Chair Wright acknowledged the recent death of Trustee Emeritus John King Nelms of Oxford. Nelms, who died at the age of 95 on June 22, served on the Board of Trustees in an advisory capacity from 1971 to 1973 and as an active member from 1973 until 2005. He served as chair in 1983-84 and from 1999 to 2003. He was named VGCC’s first — and to date, only —Trustee Emeritus upon his retirement.

“He just loved this college and did so much for it,” said Wright before leading the board in a Moment of Silence.

Nelms, who served for three decades as director of the Granville County Economic Development Commission, was instrumental in getting Granville involved in supporting what was originally Vance County Technical Institute, leading eventually to VGCC’s main campus near the Vance-Granville county line.

Budget Amendments

Upon recommendation from the Budget Committee, chaired by Trustee Abdul Rasheed, the 2016-2017 Budget Resolution was amended. The State Current Fund increased $1,915,633 to $22,460,933, the County Current Fund was unchanged at $2,515,573, and the Institutional Fund increased $436,178 to $11,202,582, for a combined Amended Operating Budget of $36,179,088. The Capital Improvement Budget was unchanged at $746,068. The total Combined Amended Budget is $36,925,156.

Fall Semester

In her report to the board, VGCC President Dr. Stelfanie Williams informed the Trustees that the new Fall Semester starts Monday, Aug. 14, with signs pointing to an increase in enrollment compared to last fall. Registration for curriculum classes runs through Thursday, Aug. 10.

Among various events and activities since the last board meeting, Dr. Williams updated the Trustees on VGCC receiving high national rankings from various national organizations. The college placed seventh on the list of top community colleges in North Carolina by and 19th among online schools in the state by the Community for Accredited Online Schools. She also reported on VGCC’s recently signed agreement with North Carolina Central University to offer two bachelor’s degree programs on Main Campus. The new Eagle Voyage offerings include a bachelor’s in Early Childhood Education and a bachelor’s in Family and Consumer Sciences with a concentration in Child Development and Family Relations.

Dr. Williams announced the Trustees will have a Board Retreat on Monday, Aug. 28.

Other Action

In other action:

  • New and amended board policies for the 2017-2018 Policy Manual were approved by the Trustees on recommendation from the Executive Committee, chaired by Trustee Wright. The policies cover areas of institutional governance, public information and campus safety, personnel policies, academic affairs, institutional research and technology, and finance and operations.
  • Trustee L. Opie Frazier, Jr., chair of the Investment Committee, reported on the progress of the college’s investments.
  • An informational report on new employees, retirements, resignations and changes in positions was given by the Personnel Committee, chaired by Trustee Sara C. Wester.

The next meeting of the VGCC Board of Trustees will be held on Monday, Sept. 18, at the Main Campus.


New EMS training program to be offered at VGCC

Vance-Granville Community College will soon expand its Emergency Medical Services training options to include the internationally-recognized Prehospital Trauma Life Support (PHTLS) program.

Developed by the National Association of Emergency Medical Technicians in cooperation with the American College of Surgeons’ Committee on Trauma, PHTLS is the leading continuing education program for prehospital emergency trauma care. The stated mission of PHTLS is “to promote excellence in trauma patient management by all providers involved in the delivery of prehospital care through global education.” The courses are intended to improve the quality of trauma care and, in turn, to save patients whose lives are in danger before they can reach the hospital. 

PHTLS promotes critical thinking as the foundation for providing quality care. It is based on the belief that, given a good foundation of knowledge and key principles, Emergency Medical Services (EMS) practitioners are capable of making reasoned decisions regarding patient care. The PHTLS course is continuously updated and revised to keep up with advances in the field.

“Adding this program will help our local responders have a better understanding of trauma and how to treat the patient,” said Stephen Barney, VGCC’s coordinator/instructor for EMS Programs. “It will bring students up to the national standard of trauma care. This will allow providers to give better care to patients.”

There are several different PHTLS courses, which, Barney said, VGCC will offer as needed, starting in the fall. The offerings include a 16-hour “Provider Course” for emergency medical responders, EMTs, Paramedics, nurses, physician assistants and physicians; an 8-hour “Refresher Course” for individuals who have successfully completed the PHTLS provider course within the past four years; a four-hour “Instructor Update,” and an 8-hour “PHTLS for First Responders” course for emergency medical responders, police officers, firefighters, rescue personnel and safety officers to prepare for rendering care to trauma patients until EMS personnel arrive. Barney said that VGCC will become one of several North Carolina community colleges offering PHTLS, while many others use the “International Trauma Life Support” training course.

VGCC offers EMS training from the basic to the Paramedic level, in addition to continuing education. For more information, call Stephen Barney at (252) 738-3273.


VGCC Accounting program ranked in top ten nationwide

The Accounting program at Vance-Granville Community College recently received recognition as one of ten best associate degree programs in its field across the United States. VGCC came in at number nine on the list of the nation’s top associate degrees published by New York-based Only one other college in North Carolina, Charlotte-based Central Piedmont Community College, made the list.

The website ranked two-year college programs according to standards such as quality of curriculum, reputation and graduation rates. “After reviewing every associate in accounting program offered in the U.S., VGCC stands out as one of the best in the nation,” said Gabrielle Martinez of Her organization noted that VGCC offers students the opportunity to earn the associate in applied science in accounting degree in traditional face-to-face classes or in a hybrid format that combines online and traditional classes.

“As accounting-related jobs continue to grow – at about 11% by 2024 – we strive to see students attain the highest return on their education, which could mean earning an associate in accounting,” according to, which has been an established resource for students and professionals in the accounting field since 1996.

“We are honored for the Accounting program to be nationally-recognized as a high-quality program that prepares students for successful careers in the business world,” said Spring Tucker, the business technologies department chair at VGCC. “This recognition is a credit to our outstanding faculty members who are dedicated to student success.”

The Accounting curriculum is designed to provide students with the knowledge and the skills necessary for employment and growth in the accounting profession. Using the “language of business,” accountants assemble and analyze, process, and communicate essential information about financial operations. In addition to course work in accounting principles, theories, and practice, students will study business law, finance, management, and economics. Related skills are developed through the study of communications, computer applications, financial analysis, critical thinking skills, and ethics. Graduates should qualify for entry-level accounting positions in many types of organizations including accounting firms, small businesses, manufacturing firms, banks, hospitals, school systems, and governmental agencies.

In addition to the two-year degree in Accounting, VGCC offers a Sole Proprietorship Accounting Certificate.

Registration is going on now for the fall semester at VGCC, which begins Aug. 14. For more information about Accounting, contact Spring Tucker at or (252) 738-3292.