Education briefs Aug. 22

Published 12:00 am Thursday, August 22, 2019

Student serves as House page

RALEIGH — Taron Lilly, a student at Rowan County Early College, recently served as a page for the North Carolina House of Representatives.

She is the daughter of Tammy Lilly and Ronald Lilly and was sponsored by Rep. Harry Warren of Rowan County. Lilly was appointed and introduced to members of the House during the Aug. 12 session.

The House page program offers a first-hand experience to students from across the state. Each year, it provides n insight into government by connecting students with elected state leaders.

Pages may observe lawmakers, lobbyists, staff and constituents working together in the legislative process. The pages witness and learn how a bill becomes law, the structure of state government and the legislative process.

House pages attend sessions and committee meetings each day. They also provide office assistance to members and staff of the House of Representatives.

RCCC offers fast-track CPA exam diploma

Rowan-Cabarrus Community College is offering a new “fast-track” CPA exam diploma designed for students who already have a four-year degree and would like to complete requirements to take the exam to become a certified public accountant.

“We see students with four-year degrees who want to go on and take the CPA exam, but they need certain courses and credits to be able to do so,” said Chad Nichols, accounting instructor. “This path will offer the perfect solution for them to reach their goals in a timely manner.”

The college already offered opportunities for students to complete courses beyond a bachelor’s degree, but the fast-track program features eight-week “minimester” classes offered online and on Saturdays so that the 40-hour diploma can be completed in one year rather than two.

“For years, we have had students with four-year degrees coming back to take these courses to prepare for the CPA exam, but they had to follow the traditional class schedule and it wasn’t always convenient for them when juggling jobs and other obligations,” said college President Carol S. Spalding. “This program is created specifically to remove those barriers that can hinder their progress.”

To be eligible to take the CPA exam, a candidate must have 150 total credit hours, at least 30 of which must be in accounting. A bachelor’s degree typically requires 120 credit hours.

The college also has helped students clear financial hurdles to take the CPA exam, which costs about $1,000.

Letitia “Tish” Dennis-Boger completed two degrees at RCCC in May 2017 — an associate in science in accounting and an associate of science in business administration — as well as a bachelor of science in accounting at Pfeiffer University. But without a scholarship from RCCC to cover the cost of the exam, she would not have been able to achieve her career goals.

“The scholarship opportunity literally made it possible for me to pursue my dream of becoming a CPA and opening my own firm one day,” she said.

For more information about the accounting program, visit

Catawba professor named to state Wildlife Commission

SALISBURY — Catawba College Professor Joe Poston has been appointed by the N.C. Wildlife Resources Commission as an expert affiliate on the nongame wildlife advisory committee.

Joe Poston

He specializes in bird behavior and conservation at Catawba. His primary teaching duties include classes in biology and in the department of environment and sustainability.

The committee advises the Wildlife Resources Commission on the conservation of nongame wildlife and their habitats in the state. It makes recommendations on aquatic species that include crayfish, mussels, fish and amphibians and terrestrial species that include birds, reptiles and mammals, among others.

This is Poston’s second appointment to the committee. He previously served as an at-large conservation stakeholder affiliate for two years. His new appointment is for a three-year term.

Poston, who earned his Ph.D. in ecology from UNC-Chapel Hill, joined the faculty at Catawba in 2000.

SECU renews scholarship program

SECU Foundation is renewing the SECU Bridge to Career Program, an initiative that provides scholarships to North Carolina students seeking education and training for vocational careers.

The program was established in 2018 and strives to remove financial roadblocks for students looking to obtain state-regulated or industry-recognized credentials through N.C. community college workforce development or continuing education programs.

Administered by each college, Bridge to Career focuses on assisting unemployed or underemployed individuals with finding vocational opportunities and securing sustainable wage careers within their local communities.

For the 2019-20 program year, 37 colleges have selected to take part in the cohort, which provides as many as 30 $500 student scholarships as well as up to $3,000 in funding for the administration of the program through an identified navigator on staff.  The 21 colleges participating in the Workforce Development Scholarships will receive as many as six $500 scholarships for individuals enrolled in a short-term training program that leads to state-regulated or industry-recognized credentials.

SECU Foundation’s financial commitment for the renewal of Bridge to Career for the 2019-20 program year is nearly $730,000.

UNC names Dean’s List

The spring Dean’s List has been released by the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Local students on the list include:

• Joshuah Cates, Lunar Singsomphone, Austin Chrismon, Lindsey Cole, Ian Ramirez, all of China Grove.
• Timothy Wilmot, Cleveland.
• Tyler Peacock, Mooresville.
• Savannah Morgan, Mount Ulla.
• Jason Troutman, Maya Staunton, Robert Dry, Rockwell.
• Maxwell Patel, Abraham Post, Jackson Campbell, Jessica Ho, Kayla Honeycutt, Caroline Parrott, Shirley Trayah, Thomas Webb, Alex Yang, Sydney Trexler, Makayla Dillon, Margaret Young, Matthew Washko, Daniel Troutman, Grayson Whicker, Kelly Short, Bailey Herndon, Cameron Walker, Juliana Anderson, Jennifer Kribbs, Mai Vang, Justin Boyd, Hannah Smith, Tanner Hawkins, Ivy Overcash, Angelique Scialdone, Amanda Patton, Kenan Hartung, Frances Cody, Long Le, Alexander Ho, Simon Post, Coby Weant, Salisbury.