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2013 was a game-changing year at UNCP

December 20, 2013

In a year of significant developments for the university, what were the most noteworthy? These events will have the greatest impact on the future of the institution and the communities, region and state it serves.

Some events can only be described as sensational -- like football team’s nationally televised upset of 5th ranked Winston-Salem State on September 5. After the win, UNCP football began to climb up the national rankings.

Enrollment remained robust with the largest freshman class in five years last fall. It was also the “smartest” class in school history in terms of their SAT scores and high school GPAs. The Class of 2017 helped replace the largest graduating class in school history.

There were new faces in key places as Chancellor Kyle R. Carter added four key leaders to his Cabinet. Former Athletic Director Dan Kenney was named Chief of Staff. Dick Christy replaced him. Dr. Richard Consentino was named Vice Chancellor for Finance and Administration and Dr. John R. Jones was named Vice Chancellor for Student Affairs.

Counseling programs earn national accreditation

In January, UNCP’s Clinical Mental Health and Professional School Counseling programs earned accreditation from the Council for Accreditation of Counseling and Related Education Programs. CACREP is the nationally recognized training standard for counselor education programs. It opens doors for graduates to employment and further training.

Master’s in nursing program approved by Board of Governors

The Master of Science in Nursing program was approved in February by the UNC Board of Governors. It will train nursing leaders and educators of the future. The program began in the fall semester with 22 candidates.

School of Business awarded AACSB accreditation

The School of Business was notified in April it had achieved accreditation from the Association to Advance of Collegiate Schools of Business (AACSB). It is the highest international standard for schools that award degrees in business and will give UNCP graduates a boost as they enter the job market or continue their education.

‘Military Friendly’ designation a good fit for UNCP

In March, the university was named to its second “military friendly” list, this time by Military Advanced Education. UNCP has been named a military friendly school by GI Jobs’ magazine for five consecutive years. In November, U.S. News & World Report, the most viewed publisher of college guides, put UNCP in its first “Best Colleges for Veterans” publication at number 20 among Southern regional universities. UNCP was the only public regional university to make the U.S. News list.

Old Main celebrated on its 90th birthday

Old Main, the university’s oldest and most historic building, celebrated its 90th year in March as part of the continuing 125th anniversary celebration. Architect of the rebuilt Old Main Sam Snowden and general contractor Ronald Nye were on hand, but former Gov. James Holshouser, who in 1973 stood on the steps of Old Main and promised to rebuild the iconic structure after it burned, could not attend due to declining health. He passed away later in 2013.

UNCP named to community service honor roll

The university was named to the 2013 President’s Higher Education Community Service Honor Roll, the highest honor a college or university can receive for its commitment to volunteering, service-learning and civic engagement. 
The roll honors the nation’s leading higher education institutions for their commitment to bettering their communities through service. These are institutions that reflect the values of exemplary community service and achieve meaningful outcomes in their communities.

Nunnery first from UNCP to lead UNC student government

Then Student Government President Robert Nunnery was elected president of the UNC Association of Student Governments in March.  With the title, he also has a seat on the 32-member UNC Board of Governors. Nunnery is the first ASG president from UNCP.

Governor, Board of Governors come to Pembroke

In April, the UNC Board of Governors met in its regular session at the university for the first time ever. North Carolina Gov. Pat McCrory also came to Pembroke to deliver his first major speech on education of the new administration. The governor and the 32-member board warmly congratulated the university on its 125 years of service.

UNCP closed 125th celebration at May commencement

After 14 months of celebrating, the university closed the book on the observance of its 125th anniversary during spring commencement. Commencement speaker Arlinda Locklear had the last word and looked to the future: “The founding fathers of this university realized that their vision required hard work, it requires dedication, it requires commitment and it requires persistence. When you apply these values, anything is possible. Dare to be as bold at they were.”

Braves’ athletes shine in the classroom too

This is a university that takes the title “student-athlete” seriously. In July, a record 159 student-athletes were named to the Peach Belt Conference President’s Honor Roll. To qualify, they needed a GPA of 3.0 or higher.

Bryant first leader of Southeastern American Indian Studies program

Dr. Alfred Bryant, an associate dean of the School of Education, was picked in August to be the first director of the new Southeast American Studies program. Visionary in scope, the program would transform the university into a national leader in research and resources for the study of American Indians in the southeastern U.S. As founding director, Dr. Bryant will establish a national advisory board and an Elder in Residence program.

Entrepreneurship Incubator is launched in downtown Pembroke

In September, Chancellor Carter’s most ambitious community outreach program was funded by two grants, totaling $1.2 million, from the federal Economic Development Administration and the Golden Leaf Foundation. In early December, the university officially launched the Entrepreneurship Incubator to be located in downtown Pembroke. When renovated, the storefront building will have space for 12 start-up businesses. Small business consultants from the Thomas Family Center for Entrepreneurship and UNC’s Small Business Technology Development Center.

UNCP research scientist wins top UNC award

It was a busy and exciting year for Dr. Ben Bahr, the William Friday Distinguished Professor of Molecular Biology. He received notice that his Alzheimer’s disease drug was provisionally patented. In November, the UNC Board of Governors honored him with the James B. Holshouser Jr. Award for Excellence in Public Service. It was another first for the university.   

Braves football climbs to new heights in 2013

Braves football had an historic year, earning its first-ever home game in the NCAA Division II playoffs. Season highlights included nationally televised wins against Valdosta and Winston-Salem, last year’s national champion and runner-up respectively. The Braves were nationally ranked for most of the season, climbing as high as number eight, before ending the season with a loss to North Alabama.