Dear Friends,

At the conclusion of another academic year – our 45th – we pause and reflect on many things in which we can take pride. USC Upstate continues to make great differences in the lives of individuals, of families, and of communities around the world. More than 30 of our May graduates will attend graduate school or programs at such prestigious institutions as University of California Berkley and University of North Carolina Chapel Hill. Their areas of study are varied and represent a wide range of disciplines. Students from the University of Applied Sciences Landshut in Landshut, Germany, who will earn dual bachelor of science degrees from USC Upstate and the German university due to a consortium agreement between the two institutions. The USC Upstate softball team claimed the A-Sun Tournament championship. This is the first Spartan team to advance to an NCAA Tournament since moving to Division I in 2007-08.

At Commencement on May 7, 866 graduates received their degrees. Among those graduates are more than 30 who are going directly to graduate school or other further study throughout the United States. Graduates will attend major universities such as Ball State University, Clemson University, George Mason University, Medical University of South Carolina, University of California Berkley, University of Florida, University of Georgia, University of North Carolina Chapel Hill, and University of South Carolina. The areas of study for these students is varied and represents a wide range of disciplines including biology, pharmacy, psychology, interdisciplinary studies, business administration, mathematics, political science, non-profit administration, commercial music, theology, and foreign language. Clearly, we are producing exceptionally prepared students.

Last spring we signed an agreement with the University of Applied Sciences Landshut in Landshut, Germany, to establish a dual degree program between the colleges of business and economics at the two institutions. In January nine German students came to Spartanburg and enrolled in the George Dean Johnson, Jr. College of Business and Economics. These nine students participated in our May Commencement as the first completers of this dual degree program. Three administrators from Landshut including Dr. Karl Stoffel, the president, were here for commencement. Eleven USC Upstate students will travel to Germany this fall to study at Landshut.

This international agreement, like many others, is credit to the tremendous work of Dr. Regis Robe, who founded the Center for International Studies and developed an amazing international program at USC Upstate. The lives of all Upstate students have been enriched through international travel and cultural experiences and/or the presence of international students on our campus. Dr. Robe, who retired in May after 35 years at USC Upstate, leaves a great legacy and a stronger University because of his work here.

We were all proud to be Spartans when the USC Upstate softball team claimed the A-Sun Tournament championship. The softball team is the first Spartan team to advance to an NCAA Tournament since moving to Division I in 2007-08. The outstanding team is led by Head Coach Chris Hawkins, who recently won his 680th career game.

The last point of pride I will mention is our being named a Tree Campus USA by the Arbor Day Foundation for the fifth consecutive year. The USC Upstate campus was the first public university in the state to achieve this honor, and we are one of four universities in the state to be named a Tree Campus USA. Our dedication to beautification efforts has resulted in nearly 900 trees being planted on campus over the past five years under the leadership of Bruce Suddeth, director of landscape services.

Please join me in celebrating these accomplishments and those students, faculty and staff who make it all possible. Together, we are expanding excellence across the Upstate and beyond.

Thank you for all you do to help. Go Spartans!


Dr. Thomas F. Moore, Chancellor


Throwing Your Way To Par: Disc Golf Lands On Campus

By Meg Hunt

Hitting the links has new meaning at USC Upstate. Yes, disc golf has arrived on campus giving participants an opportunity to get into the swing of things with the second fastest growing sport in America.

“The course is open,” said Mark Ritter, director of fitness and campus recreation. “No tee times required at this point. People are encouraged to just start playing.”

The 18-hole course is located near the Palmetto Trail across from the Rampey Center on North Campus Boulevard. Each hole, set up with the standard disc golf basket, is a par three, but “obviously some holes are longer and more difficult,” noted Ritter.

Conceptually, disc golf is played much like traditional golf except that players use a flying disc or Frisbee© instead of clubs and a ball. The disc is thrown from a tee area to the “hole.” As players make their way down the fairway, they must take each consecutive shot from the spot where the previous throw has landed. Terrain changes, trees, and shrubs throughout the course provide challenging obstacles for the golfer. And just as in traditional golf, the objective is to make the “putt.” So when the disc lands in the basket, the players tee up for the next hole.

The idea to bring the sport to USC Upstate had been talked about for a couple of years, but when a grant made it possible to purchase nine of the 18 disc golf baskets, “we started working in earnest last year to develop the course,” noted Ritter. “We chose the course location because it’s across from the residence halls, convenient for students and other participants to access.”

“It’s very addicting,” said sophomore Hayden Bishop. “By the time you finish one round you’re ready to go again.”

Though she had never played before coming to USC Upstate, once she played the first time she was hooked.

For now, disc golf is recreational on campus, but there are discussions about including the sport on the college’s intramural calendar, as well as promoting it to the general public. While the sport appeals to participants for different reasons, the one thing they all find they agree on is how much camaraderie there is and how important that is to them.

“It offers a good opportunity to meet people,” said club member and sophomore Philip Chute. “I had played a few times before, but seriously started playing this year; it’s relaxing and low-key but still competitive.”

“After playing more often, I met other people who played and I got my friends involved,” said Bishop who is also president of the university’s Disc Golf Club. “Skills can vary, as can athleticism and ability, but disc golf levels the playing field.”

Fellow club member Ryan Jordan agrees. “Hayden encouraged me to give disc golf a try,” the junior said. “None of us are seasoned veterans, but we’re getting better, playing two to three times a week.”

“Sometimes we just come out and throw, to get a feel for the lay of the land a bit,” added Chris Smith, another club member. “It’s actually peaceful and for me, a little easier than regular golf.” “You rarely play by yourself,” emphasized Jake Salgado, a sophomore club member. “That and the fact that you’re playing out in nature are what appeal to me the most.”

Disc golf is generally recognized as one of the best lifetime fitness sports, easy to learn, affordable, and good for overall well- being. And now available for the USC Upstate community!

Want to give disc golf a try? Contact the USC Upstate Wellness Center Front Desk for more information at 864-503-5080.


A Family Affair: Building Lessons Learned and Strong Reputation

By Meg Hunt

In 1978, the USC Spartanburg alumnus was hired by the university as Director of Printing Services where, as he recalls, “I was responsible for anything related to printing on campus.”

This meant he not only had to “get the print shop up and running,” but be responsible for all the copiers used across campus; write all the specifications for any larger outsourced printing jobs and follow the related bidding process for those jobs; manage the university’s word processing department; and serve as the liaison between the university’s purchasing department and vendors, as well as with main campus in Columbia. It wasn’t long, though, before the lure of the family business began to have more appeal.

“I guess coming back to the family business was the goal all along,” reflected Caldwell.

And build upon that family legacy he has. In an industry that has seen tremendous change since Southeastern Printing opened in 1967, Caldwell has been able to transition the family business into a state-of-the-art company that can effectively and efficiently meet the needs of its customers.

For nearly 50 years, Southeastern Printing has been meeting the printing needs of clients in and around Spartanburg. Since taking over the family business in 1987, Jan Caldwell has raised Southeastern’s commitment to meeting those needs to the next level. “I actually started working there part-time when I was in the 10th grade,” said Caldwell. “That’s when I began learning the trade from my dad.”

Following graduation from Dorman High School in 1970, Caldwell enrolled at the then University of South Carolina Spartanburg when it was still a two-year institution, majored in business and tried to find a balance between working full time at Southeastern and taking a full load of classes. It was an experience that proved to be another series of lessons in the trade his father began teaching him years before.

After a few years at the helm of the university’s printing services department, Caldwell took a job with Band and White, the fourth largest printing company in South Carolina at the time.

“I was hired to work in purchasing, develop estimates and make some sales calls, and familiarize myself with more of the production operation in order to become more knowledgeable of each of the areas of the business,” he noted. “They then promoted me to plant manager.” “It is a different printing world from where I started,” he said. “Technology has certainly enabled us to do more, and, of the major changes that have occurred throughout the industry, I believe the computer has had the greatest impact on how we do business.”

Caldwell notes that the computer now ties together all the elements of the production cycle which creates printing efficiency, color consistency, and increases the speed with which jobs can be completed.

Of course, all the computers and equipment don’t make the business successful.

“Customer relations are what keep a business going,” stressed Caldwell. “We put ink on paper, but the trick is maintaining strong relationships so I can turn the business over to the next generation.”

And, as when he worked for his father, it’s still very much a family business with his daughter, son-in-law, wife and niece all having a role at Southeastern Printing.

“The satisfaction of knowing you’ve helped someone, whether it’s completing a rush job for a customer who’s in a bind or helping produce a top quality product, is one of the most rewarding aspects of what we do,” emphasized Caldwell.

Helping just seems to come naturally for Caldwell and his team at Southeastern. Their commitment and generosity in supporting organizations throughout the greater Spartanburg community through a variety of in-kind contributions is well known. Mobile Meals of Spartanburg, for example, recently expressed specific thanks to “Jan and Toni Caldwell for the in-kind support they have provided the organization for 35 years.”

So whether it’s as owner of Southeastern Printing, giving back to the community through service on boards of such organizations as the Tyger River Foundation, Spartanburg Historical Society, Spartanburg Memorial Auditorium Board, First Citizens Bank Advisory Board, or Printing Industries of the Carolinas or a combination of both, Caldwell knows that reputation is key.

“The most challenging aspect with any job is the dynamics of people,” he said. “Dealing with the variety of customers, employees, vendors, or members of the community brings opportunity, but the desire is to earn the respect of all these people, develop a relationship and make a difference.”

Lessons in the trade…taught, learned, shared.


Distinguished Alumni of the Year Award

By Tammy E. Whaley

USC  Upstate  presented  the  2012 Distinguished Alumni of the Year Award to Dr. Sherwood Thompson, professor in the Department of Educational Leadership and Policy Studies in the College of Education at Eastern Kentucky University, at the Convocation for the Recognition of December Graduates. Thompson is president of The National Academy of Educational Research and executive board member of the Association for the Advancement of Educational Research. Since completing the Bachelor of Arts in Interdisciplinary Studies at USC Upstate in 1980, Thompson has attained distinction through a lengthy and productive career in education. He earned a Master of Education and Doctor of Education from the University of Massachusetts at Amherst.

“In his remarks thanking USC Upstate for the award, Dr. Thompson said some of most poignant things about the positive impact of USC Upstate on a student,” said Dr. Jim Charles, interim dean of the School of Education. “The positive impact he alluded to ripples out to the other students that he has come into contact with over his extensive career. Someone like Dr. Thompson magnifies the beneficial effect that USC Upstate has on people’s lives exponentially.”

In addition to being awarded two faculty fellowships from the University of Oklahoma Health Sciences Center, Thompson has been a recipient of the following: the Mid-Level Professional Training Certificate from the National Association of Student Personnel Administrators; the Teacher Education Council of State Colleges and Universities Dean’s Leadership Institute Fellow; the American Association of Colleges for Teacher Education Dean’s Leadership Institute Fellow; the Council for Advancement and Support of Education, Advanced Development Institute for Deans Fellow; and he is a UC Berkeley Executive Leadership Academy Fellow.

Thompson has served as the Principle Investigator for the Call Me Mister® Program at Eastern Kentucky University, an African American male teacher leadership program and he also serves as Principle Investigator for The Best Should Teach Program, a teaching excellence program for district and university educators.


Reaching Full Performance Potential
Strength & Conditioning Program is a Game-Changer

By Meg Hunt

In sports, “game-changers” are usually moments that literally change the course of a game.

At the University of South Carolina Upstate, one of the game-changers for all athletic teams is the strength and conditioning program.

“A significant portion of any collegiate athletic experience is becoming a better athlete, through coaching and physical development,” said Associate Athletic Director of Sports Medicine Sandy Sandago. “The decision to add a nationally credentialed individual was seen as a step to help our programs with that phase of development of the student-athlete experience.”

Consequently, Scott Senger was hired in 2008 as the university’s first certified strength and conditioning coach and helped direct the transition  from the
then 2,000-square-foot weight room with outdated and mismatched equipment to the present state-of-the-art performance center with one half of the facility devoted to resistance training and the other half utilized for conditioning, agility and plyometric training.

“The biggest impact in the transition to Division I was the need for the Performance Center,” said Senger. “Planning and implementing workouts (for student- athletes) was difficult due to the lack of equipment and space as the current facility was being utilized by both athletics and campus recreation.”

So, when the doors to the new Spartan Performance Center opened in 2011, the game changed for each student-athlete as the strength and conditioning program could now become an integral part of the training experience.

While an “out with the old and in with the new” attitude prevailed from a building and equipment standpoint, the overall objective of instilling concepts of teamwork, respect, dedication, mental toughness, and hard work still remains.

By integrating all of the above with a functional sport-specific and individualized training program, Upstate student-athletes are given a strong foundation upon which to perform at their optimal level of play.

Responsible for designing and implementing Spartan strength and conditioning programs for 13 of the 15 sports at USC Upstate, Senger is keenly aware of all the factors that go into creating a successful program for each individual student-athlete.

“When developing strength and conditioning programs, I have to take into account the student-athlete’s age, gender, weight-lifting history and physical ability,” he said. “My approach is always injury prevention first and then increased performance.”

The formula has proved to be an effective one.

“We have seen improvement in all related areas, strength, agility and quickness, as well as an associated drop in muscular injuries associated with athletic activity,” stressed Sandango. “Whether it’s against
competition or personally, athletes wish to see how good they can become. I believe our athletes are better because of the strength and condition facility and programming here at USC Upstate.”

Educational, challenging, and stressful are words Senger used to describe his first year as the university’s first strength and conditioning coach. Four years later, he still finds his position educational, but rewarding and impactful.

“Strength and conditioning is a 52-week commitment,” he added. “The most rewarding aspect of this job is when a student-athlete buys into a 52-week program and they begin to see the changes in their bodies and the increase on the court or field.”

The great coaching legend Vince Lombardi said, “The price of success is hard work, dedication to the job at hand, and the determination that whether we win or lose, we have applied the best of ourselves to the task at hand.”

For USC Upstate, having a dedicated strength and conditioning program ensures that each student-athlete can truly apply themselves to the “task at hand” for their respective sport. It is, indeed, a game-changer.


Turning the Page on Illiteracy

By Claire Sachse

As a graduate of a university, chances are very strong that you got your first taste of reading from a parent, older sibling or caregiver who read to you as a child, encouraging and nurturing your budding reading and comprehension skills. Through bedtime stories or sitting in a semicircle around the teacher during story time, your love for reading and the written word was planted and developed from a young age.

But for far too many children in
South Carolina, there is no role model, parent or older family member who has the time, desire or ability to read to them.

Someone is working to change that, and her name is Julie Holt. A wide-eyed rising sophomore from Summerville, Julie, as a 10th grader, formed her own literacy nonprofit agency, A Book Forever. She takes new and used children’s books to shelters and crisis ministries and hosts story time. The books she reads are collected from yard sales or churches, some new, some used, but all are then donated to the children at the ministry or shelter.

“My parents always read to me as a child,” said Julie. “The children in the shelter, because of their particular circumstances, don’t have someone to read to them or with them – they don’t even have books to read.”

Julie is not tackling the issue of literacy alone. In fact, in the Lowcountry, where illiteracy rates remain stubbornly high, Julie, together with leaders from 40 other literacy initiatives were convened by Charleston’s mayor, Joe Riley, into a special task force in December 2012. This new coalition of literacy groups will serve as a hub for organizations with the same goals and will be a way for organizations to pool resources and share expertise.
Julie notes with a giggle that she was the second youngest participant in the task force meeting. She was honored to be included in the group, she says, proudly displaying the invitation letter from the mayor as a souvenir.

Knowing that she wanted to grow and develop this organization from its humble beginnings into a force for children’s literacy, she knew she needed formal academic training in the area of managing nonprofits.

“The community service atmosphere was just the way I was brought up,” said Julie of her experiences at her high school, when she initially started A Book Forever. But she knew she needed a way to channel her enthusiasm and passion to ensure her organization’s longevity.

“I applied to USC Upstate for college because it is the only university in the state to offer a nonprofit leadership degree program,” Julie said. She immediately joined the Nonprofit Leadership Association, an association for students to gain core competencies in management, attend conferences, deliver presentations and more. She is more excited than ever about what the degree will enable her to do after graduation.

“Julie is proof that it doesn’t take decades of experience in her professional life to make a positive impact in the community. She has also had a significant influence in the USC Upstate community by bringing the lessons she has learned into the classroom and in the Nonprofit Leadership Alliance Student Association.  Her work experiences, leadership skills, and networking opportunities she is developing will serve her well after graduation,” said John Long, professor of nonprofit administration at the George Dean Johnson, Jr. College of Business and Economics.

Reading. It’s a simple act that all of us perusing this magazine take for granted. But for Julie and the children she reads to, it’s a priceless gift.


Physical Education Program Raises the Bar

By Meg Hunt

Physical education, or P.E., as many know it, has come a long way over the years. P.E. teachers, for example, are no longer just coaches who supervise a class period. More physical education program curriculums now include a professional pedagogy core, as well as a physical education content core.

While the basic principles of teaching physical education are generally the same, emphasis has evolved to encompass a broader scope of science and the importance of healthy habits and physical activity in children and adolescents.

At the University of South Carolina Upstate, a concerted effort is made to prepare students to be highly competent and thoughtful professional educators or practitioners in their chosen field, using the most effective classroom and hands- on learning experiences.

“Physical education is, by necessity, a hands-on field,” said Dr. Ben Snyder, USC Upstate physical education program coordinator and exercise and sports science director. “There is not one class where we don’t apply classroom content using student participation, whether in labs, carrying out fitness testing, or practicing teaching skills on fellow students.”

It’s equally important, he noted, for the students to see how to apply basic wellness concepts in their own lives rather than just hear lecture after lecture about various diseases they can’t visualize as being relevant to them at their age.

USC Upstate’s Physical Education major has two areas of concentration, Physical Education Teacher Education (PETE) and Exercise and Sport Science (ExSS). In the PETE pedagogy core curriculum, candidates are taught the basic principles of teaching, including classroom management, student assessment, long-range and short- range planning, and the use of technology in the classroom. Because of this curriculum’s high standards, USC Upstate has achieved national recognition from the National Association for Sport and Physical Education.

The ExSS curriculum is solidly grounded in science where students learn their craft through a variety of laboratory, research, and classroom-based experiences. Because of its comprehensive nature, students are prepared to sit for two national certification exams: the American College of Sports Medicine’s (ACSM) Health Fitness Specialist exam, and the National Strength and Conditioning Association’s (NSCA) Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist exam. This curriculum meets ACSM recommendations and has been accepted by the NSCA’s Education Recognition Program for its suitability to prepare future Strength and Conditioning professionals.

“I think the biggest shift in physical education is towards physical fitness,” noted Snyder. “Physical education teachers are trying to make that jump from traditional ‘super sports’ and old-school methods of teaching to incorporating more active games that keep kids moving.”

There’s a greater understanding of the impact of childhood obesity and non-active lifestyles of children so they are trying to develop curriculums that help fight these issues, he added.

“From our perspective, this shift means educating our students on the scientific principles of physical fitness and making sure they can read and interpret new research as it becomes available so they’ll be informed and able to incorporate the latest knowledge

into their curriculum (when they become teachers),” stressed Snyder. “After all, one of the core values of the School of Education at Upstate is to train students to be ‘reflective practitioners,’ always re- examining what and how they are teaching and how it impacts student learning.”

Snyder also notes that USC Upstate’s commitment to facility improvement has been instrumental in recruiting students to the program.

“Our classrooms are state-of-the-art and utilize the latest technology,” said Snyder. “Having a large gym right down the hall means we spend a lot of time practicing what we preach without wasting time getting to and from separate locations.”

With fitness and health-related careers growing at a rapid pace, job opportunities are predicted to grow faster than average in the next 10 years according to the Bureau of Labor’s most recent statistics, “so we expect the demand for our degree to continue to grow,” added Snyder.

“We currently have graduates working in just about every Spartanburg County school district, as well as several in other counties across South Carolina,” stressed Snyder. “On the Exercise and Sport Science side, we have students in the fitness industry, clinical positions, and graduate school, with many having earned high-level certifications.”

Yes, P.E. programs have come a long way.


Nancy B. Waldrop Teaching Scholarship

By Claire Sachse

Sometimes big things come in very small packages, and often, people with far-reaching influence and respect are the most quiet and unassuming.

That is how Daphne Dawson, a financial  aid counselor in the Admissions  Office at USC Upstate, proudly describes her grandmother Nancy Waldrop, a former elementary school teacher in the Upstate and Charlotte. She affectionately refers to her grandmother as “Mee Maw.”

“She was only 4-foot 6-inches,” said Dawson, “or 4-foot 7-inches on a good hair day!”

What she lacked in height, she made up in stature. She was a very influential lady, according to Dawson, but not in a particularly public way.

“In her way, she was quiet – she was a very powerful presence,” said Dawson. “And when you teach dozens if not hundreds of children every year, you become known, respected and remembered far and wide,” she added.

Dawson shared two stories about her grandmother after she set up a scholarship with the USC Upstate Foundation in her name.

“In one of her classes she had a little girl who suffered terrible shyness. Slowly Mrs. Waldrop was able to encourage her to talk
and answer questions. That girl is now grown up and is a teacher! In another instance, there was a new teacher in her school who wanted to quit. Mrs. Waldrop took her under her wing, supported her when she needed it, and wouldn’t let her quit. That same teacher retired 30 years later!” said Dawson.

“She had two simple rules in her classroom that she carried over to life,” said Dawson. “First, be able to read. Second, follow directions. If you can do both of these things, you can do almost anything.” Dawson said that she herself has utilized her grandmother’s rules in her own classes when she taught algebra. Dawson is currently pursuing her masters in higher education administration.

Mrs. Waldrop grew up in the Campobello area and attended Asheville Teachers College, graduating in 1939. She started teaching during WWII, and over the years taught second grade and junior high school, in the Upstate and in Mecklenburg County. She retired in 1981.

Dawson founded the Nancy B. Waldrop Teaching Scholarship in 2012 to honor her grandmother’s 40 year teaching career and to allow future teachers in USC Upstate’s School of Education to pursue their teaching degrees. Since Dawson’s family contains a number of teachers, they all have contributed to this fund, and she invites others to do the same. Several of her family members and close friends have already contributed, doubling the original amount of the scholarship.

Dawson said that she was the recipient of a similar scholarship and so it was important for her to “pay it forward.”

“I would encourage alumni to set up their own fund to honor loved ones. It does not have to be an endowment. Start with something small and meaningful. The point for me is not to have a name on a building, but to simply honor my grandmother. This is the type of gift that will keep on going after I die. You don’t have to give big, just give from the heart,” said Dawson.


Challenging Long-Held Assumptions: Book Explores Lives of Artists, Storytellers Under Chinese Communist Party Rule

By Meg Hunt

Discussions about certain periods in history can evoke memories, perceptions and even stereotypical references. For example, mention People’s Republic of China or the Cultural Revolution and see what comes to mind.

Within each period of history, however, pockets of reality can often be found which defy the assumptions. The PRC’s Cultural Revolution is no different.

In “Gilded Voices: Economics, Politics, and Storytelling the Yangzi Delta since 1949,” Dr. Qiliang He, assistant professor of history at
USC Upstate, provides a very plausible alternative to the commonly held belief that the Chinese Communist Party succeeded in politicizing popular culture through rigid censorship.

“I believed I could write something new, a new approach to the subject,” said Dr. He. “Though the seed of the idea had been planted in my earlier dissertation concepts, in 2007 I found myself developing this (book’s) concept more quickly.”

So quickly, in fact, that after only four years of research and writing the manuscript was submitted to a publisher for consideration in the fall of 2011 and published in July 2012.

Piecing together published, archival, and oral history sources to explore the role of the cultural market in mediating between the state and artists in the PRC era, He focused on the pingtan, a storytelling art using the Suzhou dialect.

“I have always thought that pingtan was very unique as a performing art and would provide a focal point for studying the triangular relationship among the state, the market, and artists in Communist China in the past six decades,” noted He. “Pingtan storytellers usually perform as solos so they do not have to share profits with other performers, musicians or administrators. Therefore, they resist the state’s effort to collectivize artists in China.”

He considered himself fortunate to actually still find pingtan storytellers and Communist officials who had managed pingtan troupes in the 1950s to interview.

As age and time were taking a toll on those he could reveal as sources, “time was of the essence,” noted He.

First-hand accounts were important to help refute long-held scholarly assumptions about the Chinese Communist Party’s success in politicizing popular culture, patronizing artists, abolishing the cultural market, and enforcing rigid censorship in Mao Zedong’s times.

“I tried to emphasize the connectedness of economic, political, and artistic factors behind the evolvement of pingtan storytelling after the 1950s,” said He. “Previous scholarship invariably highlights the politicization of Chinese culture in Communist China. My work is intended to illustrate that the cultural market, which other scholars have downplayed, actually played a
vital role in mediating between the state and the artists.”

Though censorship did exist under the Chinese Communist Party, “Gilded Voices” introduces an example of how one group maintained some independence of thought and creative license.


A Week in the Life of an AP Exam Reader
USC Upstate Faculty Members Serving with Distinction at National Level

By Meg Hunt

The value of Advanced Placement courses is widely recognized across the United States and the world as a means to help high school students develop and apply the skills, abilities and content knowledge they will need in college.

So when they take the AP Exam in May, most students see it as a culmination of their AP course experience that will give them an edge as they enter college.

Equally important, however, is what follows in June – the annual AP Reading. Led by a Chief Reader, AP Readers evaluate and score the free-response sections of the AP Exams. More USC Upstate has the distinction of being represented at the national level by Dr. Warren Carson who was recently appointed as a Chief Reader, as well as several faculty members who serve as AP Readers.

Carson, associate vice chancellor for academicaffairs and chief diversity officer and interim vice chancellor of the Greenville Campus, was appointed Chief Reader of the AP English Literature unit of the free-response section. As Chief Reader, he is responsible for ensuring that students receive scores which accurately reflect college-level achievement. In addition, he oversees the progress of the process and the work of the other readers.

Faculty members serving as AP Readers are Dr. Jeannie Chapman, Biology; Dr. Celena E. Kusch, English; Myles Alexander, English; Dr. Carol A. Loar, European History; Dr. Stefanie M. Keen, Psychology; Dr. Shannon Polchow, Spanish; Dr. Bernard Omolo, Statistics; and Dr. Mary Hightower, Studio Art.

The free-response questions scored for each AP Exam, except AP Studio Art, are comprised of essays, translations, problems than 11,000 college faculty members and teachers from around the world participate in this process. and oral responses. AP Studio Art exams are scored on portfolio assessments.

For seven days, from 8 a.m. – 5 p.m., AP Readers pour over exam after exam, attentively scoring based on rigorous criteria defined for each subject.

“It’s exhausting work, but it’s important work,” noted Carson. “Readers have to adjust to the scoring rubric and apply it to each exam they read while getting beyond some of the surface errors to look to the work’s intent.”

“The rubric is a set of guidelines for scoring the exam,” said Omolo. “Getting the rubric right the first few scripts is the most challenging aspect of the reading.”

Despite the long hours and large volume of exams involved, those Upstate faculty who serve as Readers realize the positive impact their participation has on ensuring the college preparedness of the students taking the exams.

“The most challenging aspect (of being an AP Reader) is definitely the long days,” said Loar. “But the most rewarding is seeing just how many talented, well-taught students there are around the country.”

“I’m not sure that there is any way to prepare,” emphasized Keen. “It’s going to be a grueling week no matter what, so I just come to the reading fresh and with an open mind.”

Most agree, though, that each day can yield some surprises.

“After grading hundreds of essays, every now and then you will come upon one that takes your breath away,” said Alexander. “Knowing that a student wrote this in 40 minutes with no notes, no research, in the middle of six other parts of the test…the experience gives you hope for the future!”

As noted, the scoring process for the AP Studio Art exam is based on portfolio assessments and Hightower finds her involvement in this area of scoring to be inspiring.

“You can almost feel the creative energy that emerges in the efforts of these outstanding students,” she noted. “I believe it energizes me as an artist to complete my creative process.”

At the core of the overall AP experience is the comprehensive collaboration among teachers, schools, districts, states, administrators and college faculty to ensure that students are academically ready to meet college-level standards.

“One of the most rewarding things about working with so many people from so many different institutions from across the country is the opportunity I have to mentor other Readers,” said Carson. “There are a number of gifted teachers across all disciplines, and while they want to see how students are doing (through the exams), they also want to take back ways to augment their own teaching.”

For each of the Upstate faculty members, the positive experiences of serving as an AP Reader outweigh any of the negatives.

“I truly enjoy being part of the whole process,” said Polchow. “I feel like this is my opportunity to give back to the students. The week of grading also allows me to network with Spanish instructors across the United States.”

“Pack a good pair of walking shoes and a cap that will help with the overhead light glare” and you’re ready, recommended Hightower.

Remembering, too, emphasized Carson that “we’re working on behalf of the students, trying to make sure they have every opportunity to develop the skills needed to go into the world.”


Turning Dreams Into Reality

By Meg Hunt

“Teamwork makes the dream work.” That is the motto for the Greenville Early College, but it could also be the motto for each partner involved in this endeavor.

Greenville Early College, a partnership between Greenville County Schools, University of South Carolina Upstate, Furman University and Clemson University, is a new type of secondary school designed to significantly increase the high school graduation and college-going rates of students likely to drop out.

Rising sixth-graders, who were slated for Tanglewood and Berea Middle Schools, were invited to participate in the program based on the following: scoring between the 20th and 40th percentile on state assessments and eligibility for free or reduced price meals.

Classes are held at the University Center of Greenville where three full-time teachers are responsible for the courses of study for this inaugural class. The courses focus on literacy, mathematics, and critical thinking skills. Dr. Samantha Maddox teaches English and Language Arts. Genia Byrd Webb, a 1991 USC Upstate graduate, teaches Math. John Esposito teaches Science and Social Studies.

“This approach opens up opportunities, not just college, but exposure to other aspects of even their own cultures,” said Greenville Early College Principal Mark Joseph. “Exposure at such an early age is just going to help make them stronger.”
The personalized learning environment provides the skills and tools to assist them toward becoming the first in their families to attend college.

“Yes, we’re inspiring these students, but they, in turn, are inspiring us,” noted Dr. Judy Beck, director of Teacher Education Programs at the Greenville Campus. “Kudos to Principal Joseph and staff for the job they are doing in preparing these students to believe.”

Joseph believes that by working with the overarching concept that every day is a new day and striving to eliminate those negative barriers that hinder achievement, the students truly learn more; more about themselves, each other and their environment.

“It’s learning to ‘pay now or pay later’ as it relates to the importance of making good decisions,” he added.

Another added benefit for the students is that throughout the school year they have been able to experience the “College Connection” by visiting college campuses of the partners. During these visits they’ve engaged in enrichment and academic activities.

“Our program is unique because of the number of college partners involved,” said Greenville County Superintendent of Schools Dr. Burke Royster, “The benefit of working with university partners is that it leverages our teaching force.”

Beck noted that this partnership is extremely beneficial for teacher candidates.

“This partnership provides an opportunity for ‘extreme student teaching,’ she said. “It gives our teacher candidates an edge in the job market, as well as a more engaged experience.”

Plans to grow the Early College were incorporated into the initial strategy so that an additional grade will be added each year through the 12th grade.

“We have to look at different ways to reach these children,” emphasized Joseph. “Our staff, with partners’ support, has the students in mind as they look at different approaches, and that's exciting to be a part of.”

Greenville Early College Creed
I am fearless.
I  can  do  anything  I  put  my  mind  to because I know hard work pays off.
I have goals to reach and dreams to fulfill. My challenges are the stepping stones to a better me.
Because  I  believe  in  myself,  I  will  achieve great things.
You should see my future.
I am success waiting to happen.


Simulation Center Receives Major Gift: Ensures Reputation of Nursing Program as First-Class Learning Facility

By Meg Hunt

The Mary Black School of Nursing at the University of South Carolina Upstate is one of the Southeast’s most highly-regarded nursing institutions offering a four-year degree, as well as the largest baccalaureate nursing program and the largest RN-BSN nursing program in South Carolina.

One of the cornerstones of this nursing program is the Simulation Center for Teaching Excellence. Earlier this year, a leadership gift from the J M Smith Foundation made it possible for the Simulation Center to purchase wireless audiovisual systems, computerized medication dispensing carts, and laptops for electronic bedside documentation, all of which significantly contribute to establishing the Mary Black School of Nursing Simulation Center as a first- class learning facility for its students and community partners in the healthcare industry.

Through the use of state-of-the-art technology, the Simulation Center creates an innovative learning environment that enriches the nursing and patient care training experience for students, faculty, and practicing nurses in the community.

Our Simulation Center focuses on creating an environment that fosters innovation and places emphasis on continuous learning that benefits faculty, students and area health professionals. -Dr. Katharine Gibb

A key component to the nursing curriculum is a well-equipped Simulation Center which creates a safe environment to replicate clinical situations that accurately provide students and faculty with the opportunity to practice, analyze and perfect their skills in patient care.

“Our Simulation Center focuses on creating an environment that fosters innovation and places emphasis on continuous learning that benefits faculty, students and area health professionals,” said Dr. Katharine Gibb, interim dean of the Mary Black School of Nursing. “By training on these medical simulation machines and in these simulated patient rooms, students and other healthcare professionals will have even greater expertise and experience for real-life situations.”

The addition of this equipment has contributed greatly to providing students with the highest level of instruction while grounding students and faculty in the latest research and best practices in the profession of nursing.


Music- Passion - Career: Commercial Music Program Gives Students Tools to Succeed

By Meg Hunt

Providing an experiential learning environment through which students can achieve their musical dreams is the mission of the Commercial Music Program in the Department of Fine Arts and Communication Studies at the University of South Carolina Upstate.

With courses in commercial music, jazz studies, music theory, music history, piano/ keyboard, choir, guitar performance, composition, music entrepreneurship, singing performance, music technology and applied lessons, students have the opportunity to explore a wide range of options as they prepare for a career in the music industry or if they simply want to participate with a performance group in an elective course.

“Music is an excellent career for those with an entrepreneurial spirit and passion for creativity, and in the realities of today’s economics, it’s no riskier than any other job field,” said Dr. Gregg Akkerman, director of Jazz Studies and Commercial Music.

The ever-expanding commercial music program places an emphasis on contemporary topics that include music business, history of rock music, career preparation, and songwriting.

“We’re seeing interest in our Singer/ Songwriter track for music majors who write their own music, sing and play either guitar or piano,” said Dr. Tricia
Oney, director of Vocal Studies. “That is one area which sets us apart from other music majors throughout the state and the country because we help qualified students become that triple threat.”

At the center of this all-encompassing approach to earning a Bachelor of Arts degree in Commercial Music is the goal of preparing a student to be successful in the area he or she is passionate about. These career areas include performing, private instruction, music directing, career management, publishing, booking or working with technology in contemporary and diverse professional music settings.

“There is a great interest from students in managing all aspects of their own career,” noted Akkerman. “My students don’t want to use the older models where agents and managers control everything; they want to make decisions for themselves.”

With an increasing array of opportunities available in performance, education, recording, publishing, and technology, the commercial music field demands skills that incorporate knowledge of practical music theory, ear training, contemporary music repertoire, pedagogy, composition, arranging, improvisation, technology, history, and music business. The curriculum for this degree is structured to provide a student with a thorough understanding of the aforementioned skills.

And while advancements in technology have certainly created some different avenues for students to explore in the music field, it is important to realize that, at some point, students are going to have to actually be able to sing or play in a situation where technology will not save them, added Akkerman.

“Our bi-annual juried performance exams ensure the development of musicianship and other musical skills,” stressed Oney. “Our classes introduce students to the available technology while emphasizing the development of talent and necessary performance abilities required for full- time musicians.”

A liberal arts philosophy in this field separates USC Upstate from other institutions by requiring involvement in both contemporary and traditional music styles combined with a wide range of academic study. This philosophy provides the student with a well-rounded understanding for the professional work of music and its diverse possibilities.

“USC Upstate is a terrific choice for those interested in pursuing a B.A. in Commercial Music,” said Oney. “Our faculty are working professionals in the field who take their mentor/teacher responsibilities seriously. The ability and dedication to do the business end of the career yourself are necessary today to be a successful musician and we can provide those tools.”


46th Annual Founders Day Celebrates Significant Contributions

By Meg Hunt

Founder’s Day is a special time at the University of South Carolina Upstate. The Spartanburg County Commission for Higher Education holds a celebration each February to commemorate the establishment of the University and recognize individuals who have made significant contributions in support of the school and the people it serves. The 2013 celebration honored those who have contributed greatly to USC Upstate.

The Award for Distinguished Service was presented to Ms. Ina Minsky, Dr. Judith S. Prince, and Dr. James Reese for their exceptional dedication the work at hand and to the institution.

Minsky began her career at USC Upstate with Upward Bound, a grant-funded program that prepares students to do well in high school in order to be ready to start college. In 1997, she became director of the Opportunity Network program working with first-generation college students. Until her retirement in May 2012, Minsky helped hundreds of students, and their families, navigate the waters of uncharted territory.

Prince has worked with the USC System for 33 years. From 1980 to 1992, she was Director of Graduate Regional Studies on the Upstate campus. Since 1992, she has served as assistant dean for Graduate and Special Programs and Extended Learning, associate vice chancellor for academic affairs, interim executive vice chancellor for academic affairs, and vice chancellor of the USC Upstate Greenville Campus, where her commitment to non- traditional students was legendary. She is now director of academic engagement for the Greenville Campus.

Reese became an associate professor of economics at USC Upstate in 1982. During his tenure, he spent summers in Japan, Germany, and China gaining extensive international teaching experience. In 2002, he went to Cuba twice; to attend a seminar with the Council of International Exchange of Scholars, and as a member of the first trade mission that South Carolina officials took. He also started Radio Economics, a podcast series aimed at educating listeners on economic and financial issues. He retired in 2009 but his legacy of forming important partnerships with entities abroad is still strong.

Kathryn Hicks and Dr. Lawrence E. Roël received the Founders Day Awards which provide recognition to those persons in the larger community who have been of exceptional assistance to the University. This couple has given generously to USC Upstate and made lasting impacts on the campus. Their contributions include serving on the campaign team that raised funds for the construction of the Health Education Complex, financing a named lab in the School of Education, and providing the lead gift for the establishment of the Dr. Lawrence E. Roël Pavilion.

Hired in 1974 as the University’s first full-time visual arts faculty member, Hicks devoted her time to growing the art department to include studio art education and art history, an art gallery to exhibit the works of local, regional and international artists, and a gallery to exhibit the works of University students. She retired in May 2002. The P. Kathryn Hicks Visual Arts Center was named in her honor.

Roël has made many botanical and architectural contributions to the Susan Jacobs Arboretum and contributed to the establishment of the Lawrence Roël Bog Garden. He also volunteers his time teaching 11- and 12-year-olds in the summer Watershed Ecology courses taught at the University.

The J M Smith Foundation received the Chancellor’s Council Distinguished Gold Dome Award. This is the highest and greatest honor USC Upstate can present. It recognizes sincere loyalty and commitment through faithful and generous gifts of support. With accumulated giving exceeding $1 million, the J M Smith Foundation has supported the Susan Jacobs Arboretum and other campus beautification projects; the math and computer labs in the G.B. Hodge Center; the J M Smith Foundation Board Room in the Health Education Complex; the technology wing in the George Dean Johnson, Jr. College of Business and Economics; and the recent leadership gift to the Mary Black School of Nursing Simulation Center.

“The Spartanburg County Commission for Higher Education is pleased to host this celebration each year as it provides an opportunity to pay particular tribute to individuals who have made outstanding contribution in support of USC Upstate and on behalf of the people we serve,” said Commission Chairman Thomas R. Young, III.


USC Upstate 'STEPS UP' to Give Students a Technological Edge

By Meg Hunt

From the outset, the goal of the Quality Enhancement Plan (QEP) at the University of South Carolina Upstate has been to enhance student learning.

Through the creation of STEP-UP, Student Technology Enrichment Program – Upstate, students had the opportunity to enroll in the first set of technology intensive (TI) courses this year. Developed by a group of university faculty in the inaugural Faculty Development Institute (FDI) last summer, these courses were designed to involve students in higher levels of engagement with technology. Focused on preparing students for a future with technology, these courses emphasized: accessing digital content and forms using digital means; assignments and learning activities that are prepared and submitted digitally; course participation that requires and/or enables use of a variety of digital tools and forms; and use of presentation software for course work.

“Students are ready to move into a more technological environment,” noted Dr. Lori Tanner, director of the QEP Student Technology Enrichment Program. “Throughout the year, my visits to the classes and conversations with the students taking the TI courses were all positive.”

In addition to fostering an engaged student body and highly trained faculty, a number of initiatives will be launched throughout this five-year plan to heighten awareness of the increased role of technology in the liberal arts and the professions, as well as to provide constituents with the interest and vocabulary to engage in ongoing conversations about digitalization.

“Collaboration is the key,” Tanner added. “Because technology is so dynamic, faculty must be okay with experimenting with new software, sharing ideas, participating in professional development opportunities, and, most importantly, being willing to take some risks.”

The QEP Technology Symposium, the first of which was held May 14-15 and entitled “Meeting the Challenges and Opportunities of the Digital Classroom,” is one example of the different initiatives being taken to raise awareness.

The keynote speaker was Vernon Burton, director of the Clemson University Cyber Institute. He discussed how the humanities, arts, social science, teaching and research are important parts of the digital revolution. Also on the program was Dr. Rosalind Sibielski from the Department of Theatre and Film at Bowling Green State University. She addressed the use of alternative reality games as teaching and learning tools. Other presentations were made by USC Upstate faculty and students who participated in the 2012- 2013 courses.

Discussions and development of new TI courses are underway for next year. Ten additional TI courses will be incorporated into the program each year through the spring of 2017.

For more information on QEP and STEP- UP, go to


The Chancellor's Council

The Chancellor’s Council was established in 2008 to recognize the distinguished alumni and friends who understand that USC Upstate can fulfill its educational goals only with their loyal support and financial involvement. These individuals have paved the way for the future and continue to support the excellent education afforded our students.

The council's membership has been instrumental in USC Upstate’s progress and success by giving to a multitude of university programs. The goals of the council are to:

• Provide an increasing pattern of  generous giving to the university to support and enhance quality in  all  its academic endeavors
• Develop the active participation of alumni and friends to serve the institution through close association with the chancellor and university community
• Recognize those whose generosity serves the welfare and advancement of USC Upstate
• Educate all constituents on the importance of philanthropy at USC Upstate.

Alumni and friends of USC Upstate are eligible to become members of the Chancellor's Council. Annual giving to any school, college or program at USC Upstate at $1,000 or above qualifies you for membership in the Chancellor's Council. Gifts may be made to any area of the university or split among multiple designations. For example, $500 to any dean’s fund, $300 to a specific scholarship, and $200 to athletics qualify the donor for Chancellor's Council membership at the Cornerstone level.

USC Upstate Foundation Giving Levels
The USC Upstate Foundation has established these giving levels beginning on July 1, 2012 for the Carolina’s Promise capital campaign and beyond.

Annual Giving levels
Friend - $1 to $499
Dean’s Club - $500 – 999

Levels - Membership at these levels include current gifts, pledge commitments, and deferred gifts.
Cornerstone - $1,000 – 2,499
Scholar - $2,500 – 4,999
Benefactor - $5,000 – 9,999
Lifetime - $10,000 – 24,999*
Founder - $25,000 – 99,999
Keystone - $100,000 – 499,999
Tower - $500,000 – 999,999
Gold Dome - $1,000,000 and up
*Once a donor’s accumulated giving reaches the Lifetime level, they become permanent members of the Chancellor’s Council.

The Spartan Society
This recognizes alumni and friends for consecutive year giving.

The 1967 Legacy Society
Recognition for provisions made in an estate plan through a deferred or planned gift.  By example these include will provisions, life insurance, gifts of real property in a life estate, charitable gift annuities or charitable remainder trusts.


Academic Affairs Changes

After almost two semesters as interim dean, Dr. Frank Rudisill, management professor, has been named dean of the George Dean Johnson, Jr. College of Business and Economics. Rudisill’s administrative responsibilities include academic program, budget and personnel oversight; leadership in maintaining AACSB International accreditation; and proactive and extensive leadership in collaborative activities with business, industry and technical colleges and universities in the region.

“Having been a faculty member for 10 years, I know the positive impact the faculty, staff, administration and students can have on the Upstate business community. The primary mission of the Johnson College is to deliver an excellent business education to our students and I am excited about partnering with our many stakeholders in this pursuit,” said Rudisill upon his appointment.

Rudisill teaches in the areas of management, operations management, statistics and business strategy. He was also the lead partner from USC Upstate in working with BMW Manufacturing to develop the USC Upstate/BMW Academic Outreach Camp for high school students. His research interests focus upon applying quality tools and techniques in solving industrial problems.

Rather than being a painful chore, learning should be augmented by smiles and laughter, according to Dr. B. Lee Hurren, newly named dean of the School of Education. Humor in school, he adds, can be used to stimulate learning, motivate students, and ease tensions.  Hurren would know about humor, given that he is a former stand-up comic and winner of the Doritos/Certs Comedy Competition. He even wrote his dissertation on the effects of principals' humor on teachers' job satisfaction.

Dr. B. Lee Hurren will be joining the faculty of the School of Education in July 2013, replacing Dr. Charles Love, who retired after serving 13 years as dean.

Hurren comes to USC Upstate from the University of North Alabama where he has served as chair of the Department of Secondary Education and as a professor of secondary education since 2007. From 2003 - 2007 he served as an associate professor of education. He earned his Ph.D. in educational leadership and his M.Ed. in Spanish education from the University of Nevada, Reno. He earned his B.A. in Spanish from Southern Utah University.

“The challenging and exciting field of education provides endless opportunities for those who wish to make a positive difference in the lives of our children and youth, and I feel privileged to be a part of that," said Hurren.


Class Notes

Jeanne Flannery retired in 2011 after 40 years of nursing.

Pam McArthur has been selected as Teacher of the Year for Pacolet Elementary School in Spartanburg School District 3. She has 12 years teaching experience with the last five years spent as a second-grade teacher.

Cathy Ward has been recognized as Teacher of the Year for the Pacolet Middle School in Spartanburg School District 3.  She has 16 years teaching experience with the last nine years spent teaching mathematics.

Marlene Booth is a CPA for Fred J. Adams Certified Public Accountants in Greenville, SC.

Heather Webber is the Regional Manager at Athena Health, Inc., a leading provider of cloud-based business services for physician practices.

Frank Allgood is director of client communications for SHiFT, Inc., a full-service marketing agency in Greenville, SC with clients in the professional services and industrial sectors. He was previously managing editor of GSA Business, a business journal that covers the Upstate
of South Carolina. Frank’s wife, Jeneane R. Allgood, is the 2012-2013 Teacher of the Year for Dorman High School in Spartanburg School District 6.

Dr. Nora Fryar Moore became the director of Spartanburg County Public Virtual School in 2011-2012.

Heidi Hawkins spent April to September 2012 thru-hiking 2,669 miles of the Pacific Crest Trail, which starts at the border of Mexico and California in a small town called Campo and ends in Manning Park, Canada. This was her second long-distance hike, having thru-hiked the Appalachian Trail in 2006 after being inspired by retired USC Upstate Mathematics Professor James Spencer. Her husband, Charles Blake III, graduated from the University of Maryland, College Park in December 2012 with a Ph.D. in International Education Policy and they recently celebrated their third wedding anniversary.

Nicole Rinkema Parris and Stacy Parris have two children, Austin and Casey.

Kendale Miller is the marketing coordinator for Green Cloud Technologies where he manages brand strategy, marketing and corporate communications.

Robert Reid received his Masters of Science in Nursing with an emphasis in Health Care Systems Management from Loyola University in New Orleans, LA. Reid was also inducted into Sigma Theta Tau International Honor Society of Nursing.

Eden Eyasu enjoyed a successful IT career in Charlotte, NC until 2010 and is now a licensed financial representative with Transamerica. She is also completing a book soon to be published in 2013.

Walesca Darce completed her M.Ed. at the College of William and Mary.

Julie Forth has two sons, Alexander Bryson Forth, born August 7, 2009 and Michael Thomas Forth, born January 28, 2012.

Latoya Richardson works for South Carolina Vocational Rehabilitation.

Jocelyn  Calvin graduated from North Carolina Central University School of Law in 2012 and passed the July 2012 NC Bar Exam. She is now an assistant district attorney in Alamance County in Graham, NC.

Jessica Osbourne Riddle is the business advisor for Showcase Marketing.

Megan Creech Force is the marketing director for Sodexo at USC Upstate dining services.

Stacey Smith was crowned Miss Greenville USA and will compete for Miss South Carolina.  She plans to launch a mentoring program for young girls that focus on making priorities, giving advice and boosting self-esteem.

Vergena “Pearl” Broome and husband, Michael, welcomed Michael B. Broome Jr. on August 6, 2012.

Summer Wall Keener began her career as a NICU nurse.

Tawana Scott was recently appointed by Governor Nikki Haley to the Statewide Independent Living Council.  She is working for the Disability Action Center in Greenville, helping people with disabilities live more independent lives.

Wendy Wilkie recently began a medical- surgical nursing job at Summa Health System in Akron, OH.

David Armstrong is employed by Resurgent Capital Services

Johnharrison Bianchi  is employed by Fed Ex.

Taylor Brown is employed by the Spartanburg Herald Journal.

Vickie Dailey won 2nd place in the Carrie McCray Literary Awards.  She will also be published in the Petigru Review for her non-fiction piece entitled “Fairy Tales of a Fragile Mind.”

Ebony Gailliard  is employed by ADS in Virginia Beach, VA.

Kristen  Kelly is employed by American Credit Acceptance.

Jessica Montgomery works for Comfort Keepers.

Demashia Moore is in the National Guard and served in Afghanistan until March 2013.

Devin Stewart is working as a senior funding analyst at American Credit Acceptance and pursuing his dream of being a youth pastor.

Isaiah Trillo works for Systems South, Inc. in Fountain Inn, SC.

David White currently works at Inman Mills.

Tiffany Williams is employed by Arbitron.

Chris Bartholomew works for BMW.

Alex Britt is employed by ScanSource.

Qasim Fayyaz works for American Credit Acceptance.

Jeff Medley is employed by American Credit Acceptance.

Jasmine Horton is a graduate student at Gardner-Webb University pursuing a Masters in Divinity/M.A. in English Education.

Justin Houser is working for American Credit Acceptance.

Amanda McCall works for Hubbell, Inc.

Hunter McKeown works for New York Life.

Madison Morgan is employed by LEL International, Inc.

Stephen Parris is employed by Color for Plastics.

Vivek Patel is employed by ESAB.

Mary Elizabeth Smith Queen is employed by Sealed Air Corporation.

John Rogers is enrolled in the program at Clemson University Masters of Accountancy Program.

Melissa Veal was an extra in the Jennifer Aniston film “We're The Millers." She worked as a production assistant on the mini-series “For Richer or Poorer” and the NBC show “Revolution.” She is now working as an intern for the art department for the feature film "Adrenaline" starring John Schneider from the Dukes of Hazzard.

Jasmine White was recently hired full-time at LEL International.



Keisha Valentine ʼ02 married Curtis Marant on September 10, 2005. They have two children, Solomon and Alannis.

Hilda “Walesca” Darce ʼ04 married Paolo Cavenaghi on December 15, 2009.

Latoya Johnson ʼ04 married DeMar Richardson ʼ03 on March 17, 2012.

Jocelyn  Calvin ʼ06 married Paul Wright of Greenville, SC on August 4, 2012.

Halley Warble ʼ07 married Mason Lee Lambert on December 31, 2011. They have one child, Ruby Jean Lambert.

Ashlie Keller ʼ08 married Zach Hanley on October 6, 2012.

Vergena “Pearl” Gainey ʼ10 married Michael Benjamin Broome on November 12, 2011.

Rebecca Meek ʼ11 married William Barnett Littlejohn, III on September 22, 2012.

Corrie Cantrell ʼ12 married Jonathan Boyd Marr on May 20, 2012.

Asia Williamson ʼ12 married E. Hunter Morgan on October 28, 2012.



Elizabeth “Babs” Brown Forbes ʼ78 passed away on March 26, 2013.

Betty Miller ʼ79 passed away on August 17, 2012.

Elizabeth Hackett-Jenkins ʼ82 passed away on August 18, 2012.

Phillip  Marvin Jolley ʼ82 passed away on March 2, 2013.

Sherri Lynn Pruitt  ʼ86 passed away on January 23, 2013.

Allison Erwin Druham ʼ89 passed away on March 19, 2013.

Randy Lewis Johnson ʼ92 passed away on January 16, 2013.

Bobbie Jean Smith ʼ92 passed away on August 28, 2012.

Crystal  Bell Selvaggio  ʼ94 passed away on December 26, 2012.

Carl Guest ʼ04 passed away on December 25, 2012.

Kelly Baker ʼ10 passed away on September 5, 2012.