VGCC trustees approve new medical program in Histotechnology

Thursday, September 24, 2015

Vance-Granville Community College’s Board of Trustees approved a new medical laboratory associate degree program, hired a contractor to renovate a building, and welcomed a new trustee at the board’s bi-monthly meeting on the Main Campus on Sept. 21.

The new Histotechnology program will prepare students to be efficient in the medical laboratory field, Trustee Barbara Cates Harris, chair of the Curriculum Committee, said.

A two-year program that is set to begin in Fall 2016, Histotechnology 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.

The addition of the program comes from a partnership proposed by GlaxoSmithKline and Duke Medical Center.

Course work covers scientific concepts such as 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.

“Upon graduation, students can work in various diagnostic labs, hospitals, medical offices, and related facilities,” said Dr. Angela Ballentine, VGCC’s vice president of academic and student affairs. “With board approval, the college will now submit the program to the North Carolina Community College System and the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges for their approvals.”


Building 10 bid awarded


The Board of Trustees accepted a recommendation from the Building Committee to award the bid for renovation on Building 10 to Riggs-Harrod Building, Inc., at a cost of $998,785.

The Durham contractor was the lowest bidder on the project, said Abdul Sm Rasheed, chair of the committee.

Construction is tentatively scheduled to start in October, with most of the work completed by April 2016.

The building, located across Poplar Creek Road from the rest of Main Campus, will provide classroom and office space for programs such as Basic Law Enforcement Training, Law Enforcement In-Service training, Emergency Medical Services, and Fire/Rescue Programs. The move will allow for expansion of other programs and services in the areas currently occupied by the programs.

The college is expected to occupy the renovated building for classes starting in Fall 2016.

The trustees also authorized the college president, Dr. Stelfanie Williams, to work with the board’s attorney in negotiating a shared road maintenance agreement with the owners of the property adjacent to Building 10.


Gregory sworn in as new trustee


Herbert T. “Herb” Gregory, Jr., of Oxford was welcomed as the newest member of the VGCC Board of Trustees. He was administered the oath of office by District Court Judge John W. Davis of Louisburg. Appointed to the board by North Carolina Gov. Pat McCrory, Gregory takes the seat previously held by Stan Fox of Oxford.

A retired computer programmer who ran his own company in Toronto, Canada, for 27 years before moving to Granville County in 2000, Gregory now lives in Stovall on his family farm that dates back to 1804.

The trustees also elected Gregory to the position of vice chair of the board, previously held by Fox. Trustee Deborah Brown of Henderson was elected as chair and Dr. Doris Terry Williams of Henderson as secretary for 2015-2016 at the board’s meeting in July. Recommendations were made by a nominating committee chaired by Trustee L. Opie Frazier, Jr.


Budget update


While there was no official action by the Trustees’ Budget Committee, Danny W. Wright, chair, announced that the General Assembly has now approved a budget for the current fiscal year. The college will be preparing a budget resolution for approval at the Trustees’ next meeting in November.

Dr. Williams reported that the budget includes a provision for year-round funding of classes. “This is a very positive step for community colleges,” she noted.

Other provisions in the budget could strengthen the college’s relationship with local school systems and provide training for public school employees teaching developmental courses, she added. Among numerous provisions in the budget, counties are being given a new sales tax revenue option that could be used for community colleges, public schools and economic development.


Development projects


The trustees authorized Dr. Williams and her staff to expend as necessary the funds recently received from a major gift to the college by the estate of W.A. Edwards. The trustees had previously identified activities in the areas of Student Success, Faculty Development and College Facilities.

A gift of $1.6 million was received by the college in December 2014. The trustees are responsible for funds that have been donated specifically to VGCC, while the college’s Endowment Fund board manages gifts given to the endowment.


Other Action


In other action:

• Appointments to the Advisory Committees for college programs for 2015-2016 were approved.

• Personnel Committee Chair Sara Wester reported on new employees, retirements and resignations.

• Investment Committee Co-Chair L. Opie Frazier, Jr., updated the board on college investments, presenting a report detailing assets from the R.B. Butler Estate, H.L. Sherman Trust, R. Matteson Trust, and W.A. Edwards Trust. Those assets totaled $4,270,178 as of Sept. 2.

• In her report to the trustees, Dr. Williams reported on dozens of recent activities and events at the college. Among those, she noted several of the 12 trustees attended the North Carolina Association of Community College Trustees Fall Leadership Seminar in Wilmington on Sept. 9-11.

The next meeting of the VGCC Board of Trustees will be held on Monday, Nov. 16, at the Main Campus.


Above: VGCC’s newest Trustee, Herbert T. “Herb” Gregory, Jr., takes the oath of office while surrounded by his family on Monday, Sept. 21, at the trustees’ regular meeting. Shown from left are Jim Wrenn and Gregory’s daughter, Martha Wrenn, with their children, Jack and Jake; Mark Gregory, his son; Lizzie Stovall, his daughter; Gregory; his wife, Patti; and Ninth Judicial District Judge John Davis of Louisburg. (VGCC photo)