Dr. Ami Thompson featured in The Naturalist Publication


Ami Thompson, Ph.D., NCWU Assistant Professor of Biology, recently traveled to Ohio to present a workshop with her colleagues Melissa Sanchez Herrera, and freelance biologist Sandra Hunt von Arb. They discussed the migration mysteries of the Common Green Darner dragonfly. U.S. Forest Service administrators Karin Theophile and Mike Rizo also accompanied them. 

During the workshop, they performed tests and collected data that will inform future international dragonfly conservation & research and hopefully reveal clues about the mystery of migration. 

VIEW PDF OF ENTIRE ARTICLE  By Ray Novotny, Naturalist Emeritus, Mill Creek Metroparks

For more information: 
Ami Thompson – Dragonfly Website

Check out The Naturalist Newsletter, The Naturalist is the official newsletter of NAI’s Interpretive Naturalist Section. Find articles, news, tips & tricks, best practices, and more written by Interpretive Naturalists for Interpretive Naturalists! 

How did scientists first come know that dragonflies migrate? This video below highlights one of the first published observations of the phenomenon and tells you where you can go to observe raptor and dragonfly migration, in Minnesota.

NCWU Offers Educational Benefits to UNC Health Nash


North Carolina Wesleyan University President, Dr. Evan D. Duff, and UNC Health Nash President/CEO, Dr. L. Lee Isley, have signed a partnership agreement to expand educational opportunities to employees of Nash. The partnership allows employees to develop practical skills that they can apply to their careers through certificate, undergraduate RN to BSN and graduate degree programs at NCWU. 

dr duff and dr isley shaking hands
L to R: Dr. Lew K. Hunnicutt & Dr. Evan D. Duff

“At Wesleyan, we have programs that support almost every career path at UNC Health Nash. Those programs include certificates in Executive Leadership and Human Resources Management, as well as our Bachelor’s degree in Healthcare Administration, RN to BSN program, and our Masters in Public Health and Masters in Strategic Leadership,” stated Dr. Evan D. Duff. “Since the launch of our RN to BSN program in 2019, the University has been fortunate to have the support of Dr. Isley and UNC Health Nash. This new agreement is one way for us to give back to their employees.

The partnership includes special financial awards for those who enroll in one of Wesleyan’s certificate, baccalaureate or graduate degree programs. Nash employees who are seeking to grow as a leader in their respective divisions can do so with NCWU’s flexible programs for working adults. All of these programs are 100% online with one-on-one support from faculty who have industry experience. NC Wesleyan’s degree programs improve competency in areas specific to the roles of employees at UNC Health Nash. This partnership will also provide Registered Nurses with one of the most affordable BSN options in the state of North Carolina.

Mutually benefiting all parties, this partnership allows UNC Health Nash employees to receive special rates to attend NCWU. In return, the hospital will market this opportunity and NC Wesleyan’s programs to all of their employees. In addition, Nash will afford NC Wesleyan University an opportunity to advise their employees through email, on-site opportunities, flyers, brochures and the posting of other promotional materials. Nash employees must remain employed with the hospital in order for them to remain eligible for these awards. 

Nash County Launches Education Network Agreement


Nash County Public Schools (NCPS), Nash Community College (NCC), and North Carolina Wesleyan University (NCWU) are pleased to announce the signing of the Nash County Education Network agreement. The agreement was signed this morning at NCWU by Dr. Evan D. Duff, President of North Carolina Wesleyan University; Dr. Lew K. Hunnicutt, President of Nash Community College; and Dr. Steven Ellis, Superintendent of Nash County Public Schools. 

L to R: Dr. Evan D. Duff, Dr. Lew K. Hunnicutt, Dr. Steven Ellis

This collaborative initiative is designed to support local talent by offering an affordable educational pathway from high school to a bachelor’s degree within Nash County. Tuition will be capped at $20,000 in total for completion of both an NCC associates degree and an NCWU bachelor’s degree. These students will also be offered access to academic advising and financial aid counseling by NCWU prior to enrollment at NCWU. The Nash County Education Network exemplifies community cooperation and a commitment to keeping our most promising individuals close to home. Addressing the misconception that higher education at Wesleyan is financially inaccessible, Dr. Duff remarked, “We need to educate them here, so they’ll stay here,” highlighting the strategy to make education attainable for Nash County’s students. 

The network not only emphasizes affordability but also cultivates a “live here, learn here, work here” ethos that benefits the entire community. Students can now seamlessly transition from K-12 at NCPS to completing their associate degree at NCC and then transfer to NC Wesleyan to complete their four-year degree. These exclusive opportunities are tailored for Nash County students who complete their associate degree at Nash Community College, reinforcing the strategic educational journey from local classrooms at NCPS to the business world, including internships and job placements. “We are creating more than a pathway; we’re preparing for a future where education and industry intersect, leading to a thriving local economy,” Hunnicutt stated. Dr. Ellis added, “This pathway will have a profound impact on our public school system and our students’ futures. It opens doors to higher education and career opportunities that were once out of reach for many.” 

For further information about the Nash County Education Network, please contact Heather Louise Finch, NCPS, at hlfinch@ncpschools.net and Kenyon “K.J.” Askew, Jr., NCC, at klaskew736@nashcc.edu.

About the Nash County Education Network:

The Nash County Education Network (NCEN) is a transfer program for Nash County Public School graduates who plan to continue their education at NCC, with the educational goal of fulfilling their undergraduate degree at NCWU. This pathway is formally spring 2024 to ensure that graduates from both NCPS and NCC are automatically eligible for admission to one of NCWU’s undergraduate degree programs. Tuition will be capped at $20,000 in total for completion of both an NCC associate degree and an NCWU bachelor’s degree*. These students will also be offered access to academic advising and financial aid counseling by NCWU prior to enrollment at NCWU. Participants in the NCEN will also be offered access to any events on NCWU’s main campus in Rocky Mount, NC, at no cost.

New Offering at NCWU Allows for Two Degrees, Two Certificates in 2.5 Years


North Carolina Wesleyan University is introducing a new unique, accelerated program designed for students wishing to elevate their associate degree to a master’s degree. Through this new pathway, students will have the opportunity to earn an Executive Leadership Certificate, Human Resources Management Certificate, bachelor’s degree and a Master’s in Strategic Leadership in approximately two and a half years.

This degree option was designed with working adults in mind by offering 100% online classes. Students can earn certificates as they go with a focus on two classes per term. The University also offers career assistance, supportive advisors and faculty, and special tuition pricing for North Carolina community college graduates*. Students admitted into the Associate to Master’s program must meet all undergraduate requirements, attain bachelor degree conferral and submit graduate admissions material before they begin the M.S. in Strategic Leadership program.

“NCWU remains on the cutting edge of programming to accelerate the educational attainment of working adults in our state. We have been a leader in alternative pathways for adults to complete their college degree for over 45 years,” stated Dr. Evan D. Duff. “This is a one-of-a-kind program in North Carolina that allows community college graduates to fast track their learning while attaining multiple credentials along the way.”

Upon completion of the Associate to Master’s program, students will be qualified to attain the following industry certifications: SHRM Certified Professional (SHRM-CP) Certification, HRCI’s Associate Professional in Human Resources (aPHR) Certification and the Strategy Planning Professional (SPP) Certification.

If you already have an associate degree, this is a great opportunity to advance your education in less time in order to gain a competitive advantage in the workforce. Apply today to gain new skills and earn multiple degrees at a top-ranked university, taking the first step towards accelerating your career! Those who are interested can learn more at ncwu.edu/associate-to-masters.

Veterans Day Celebration Planned at NCWU


Join North Carolina Wesleyan University on Friday, November 10 for a Veterans Day event celebrating and honoring the men and women of our armed forces. The morning will start off at 10:00 a.m. with a patriotic salute to all Veterans and a special pinning for Vietnam Veterans.

NCWU ROTC cadets stand and salute the flag

The event will be held at the main flagpole in front of the Braswell Administrative building with guest speaker, Rep. Allen Chesser. In case of inclement weather, the event will be moved to the Garner Lobby at The Dunn Center. Rep. Chesser is an alumnus of NC Wesleyan and currently serves on the University’s Veteran Advisory Committee. Elected in 2022, Rep. Chesser is currently the State Representative for North Carolina House District 25, which covers the majority of Nash County. Before serving in the North Carolina House, he was a police officer for the City of Raleigh and the Town of Nags Head. Rep. Chesser is a combat veteran of the U.S. Army National Guard.

“With wars and rumors of wars consistently in the headlines, it is important to pause and recognize those who have served our Country and kept America free. We are thankful to have the opportunity to honor our Wesleyan and Rocky Mount Veterans by continuing our tradition of the Veterans Day Salute. We are excited to have Rep. Chesser, Dawn Cash-Salau and Andrea Bishop joining us this year and look forward to their contribution to the day,” stated Laura Estes Brown, Associate Dean of Veteran Services.

During the ceremony, Mrs. Dawn Cash-Salau will present the Christopher Cash Scholarship to this year’s recipients. In addition, the University is supporting the local Ride of Honor taking place November 10 and 11. This fundraiser benefits the PruittCares Foundation to help veterans and bring Camp Cocoon to Nash County. Andrea Bishop BSN, RN, Administrator of PruittHealth Hospice of Rocky Mount, will be speaking briefly about this event at NCWU’s Veterans Day Salute.

Tolson Awarded Algernon Sydney Sullivan Award


For his great career in serving the region’s people and needs, North Carolina Wesleyan University presented Norris Tolson with the Algernon Sydney Sullivan Award at their Homecoming game on Saturday, October 14. Mr. Tolson is the Vice President of Special Projects for the Carolinas Gateway Partnership. The award is presented to a community leader who best exemplifies excellence in character, leadership, service to the community and a commitment to spiritual values. This humanitarian award is meant to recognize those who have selflessly given and served others and the community.

(L to R): Mark Hinson, Norris Tolson, Dr. Evan D. Duff

Algernon Sydney Sullivan rose to success in New York City as a respected lawyer and a man who “reached out both hands in constant helpfulness” to others. After his death in 1887, the Society sought to honor him and the award bearing his name was established in 1925 by the Sullivan Memorial Committee and the New York Southern Society, which Mr. Sullivan had served as its first president.

“Mr. Tolson, for many years, has been a remarkable public servant in this region and statewide.  When considering the attributes someone should possess in order to be awarded the Algernon Sydney Sullivan Award, he was a clear choice and is well deserving of this honor,” stated Mark Hinson, Sr. Executive of Philanthropic Engagement at North Carolina Wesleyan University.

Before joining the Carolinas Gateway Partnership, Tolson served as a senior advisor for economic development with the Williams Mullen law firm, was President and CEO of the North Carolina Biotechnology Center, served as both the North Carolina Secretary of Commerce and the North Carolina Secretary of Transportation. He was elected to the North Carolina General Assembly and served in the House of Representatives from 1994 until 1997 representing parts of Edgecombe, Nash, Pitt and Wilson Counties at the time.  In 1999, Tolson served as the Chairman of the North Carolina Hurricane Floyd Relief Fund and in 2001 he was appointed to be the North Carolina Secretary of Revenue and stayed in this role until 2007.

Tolson proudly resides in Pinetops, NC.  He has three children and five grandchildren.

NCICU Congratulates Recipients of Criminal Justice Scholarships from N.C. Sheriffs’ Association


North Carolina Independent Colleges and Universities is pleased to announce recipients of this year’s North Carolina Sheriffs’ Association (NCSA) Criminal Justice Scholarship. Students at 14 private colleges and universities in North Carolina received the $2,000 awards.

NCSA provides scholarships per academic school year for criminal justice students attending a North Carolina independent college or university. Applications are sponsored by local sheriffs and recipients must be North Carolina residents.

NCICU President Hope Williams thanked the North Carolina Sheriffs’ Association for supporting students pursuing a criminal justice curriculum. “We deeply appreciate this partnership with NCSA to assist students who are pursuing a career in law enforcement.” NCICU administers the program for independent college and university students.

Scholarship RecipientCollege/UniversitySponsoring SheriffCounty
Haley TolerBarton CollegeCalvin L. Woodard Jr.Wilson
Meghan TropeanoBelmont Abbey CollegeChad HawkinsGaston
Nathaniel MahoneyBrevard CollegeChuck OwenbyTransylvania
Derrick WadeChowan UniversityDexter HayesHertford
Colby KirklandGardner-Webb UniversityAlan NormanCleveland
Ashley Jusso-HernandezGuilford CollegeDanny RogersGuilford
Xavier BellJohnson C. Smith UniversityGarry L. McFaddenMecklenburg
Kaylee MessickLees-McRae CollegeMike HenleyAvery
Azia ThomasLivingstone CollegeTravis AllenRowan
Brandon EdwardsMars Hill UniversityBuddy HarwoodMadison
Alexandra ChapmanMontreat CollegeQuentin MillerBuncombe
Zachary ScottN.C. Wesleyan UniversityKeith StoneNash
Madison LoweryPfeiffer UniversityJeff CriscoStanly
Mariana CrespoUniversity of Mount OliveLarry PierceWayne

About the North Carolina Sheriffs’ Association

NCSA is the statewide organization of the state’s 100 sheriffs. Through their association, the sheriffs work to strengthen the professional law enforcement services their offices provide to the people of North Carolina.

North Carolina Independent Colleges & Universities

NCICU serves as the statewide office of private, nonprofit higher education in North Carolina. Our 36 colleges and universities are liberal arts, comprehensive, and research colleges and universities, including Historically Black Colleges and Universities, colleges for women, and Minority Serving Institutions.

City of Rocky Mount and NCWU Team Up for Educational Opportunities


Leaders from North Carolina Wesleyan University (NCWU) and the City of Rocky Mount (Rocky Mount) have signed a partnership agreement offering educational opportunities to employees of the city. The partnership allows employees to develop practical skills that they can apply to their careers through certificate, undergraduate and graduate degree programs at NCWU.

Dr. Evan D. Duff and Keith Rogers from the City of Rocky Mount smile for a photo
Dr. Evan D. Duff and Keith Rogers

“North Carolina Wesleyan University recognizes that the City of Rocky Mount is a critical and valuable resource when it comes to serving the needs of our citizens. As a member of the Rocky Mount community, NCWU is proud to partner with the city to advance the quality of services provided. Through this partnership, Wesleyan offers professional development, certificates, undergraduate and graduate degrees to support their employees,” stated Michael Drew, VP of Enrollment.

This partnership allows NC Wesleyan to offer a one-time $250 University Award of enrollment in certificate classes to each Rocky Mount employee during their last semester of enrollment. North Carolina Wesleyan University has certificate programs in Executive Leadership, Healthcare Administration, Human Resource Management and a Public Health Graduate Certificate that can be completed in as little as 16 weeks.

For those who are interested in pursuing their bachelor’s degree, NCWU will offer a $1,000 University Award at the end of the first semester of enrollment in undergraduate classes. Additionally, a second award of $1,000 will be presented at the end of their last semester, for a total University Award amount of $2,000.

Employees enrolling in NC Wesleyan’s Master of Business Administration (MBA), Master of Criminal Justice (MSCJ), Master of Public Health (MPH) or Master of Strategic Leadership (MSSL) degree programs will receive a $500 University Award at the end of their first semester of enrollment in graduate classes. In addition, NCWU will award a second amount of $500 at the end of their last semester, for a total University Award amount of $1,000.

Mutually benefiting all parties, this partnership allows Rocky Mount employees to receive special rates to attend NCWU. In return, the city will market this opportunity and NC Wesleyan’s programs to all of their employees. In addition, the City of Rocky Mount will afford NC Wesleyan University an opportunity to educate their employees through email, on-site opportunities, flyers, brochures and the posting of other promotional materials. Rocky Mount employees must remain employed with the city in order for the employee to remain eligible for this award.

NCWU Provides Educational Opportunities to Town of Nashville


Leaders from North Carolina Wesleyan University (NCWU) and the Town of Nashville (Nashville) signed a partnership agreement offering educational opportunities to employees of the town. The partnership allows employees and their immediate families to develop practical skills that they can apply to their careers through certificate, undergraduate and graduate degree programs at NCWU.

Town of Nashville sign

“We take pride in the ability to provide our community the education, experience and learning environments necessary to for our community partners with their most valuable resource—an educated workforce. We look forward to continuing and facilitating this partnership for the benefit for our community and the Town of Nashville’s employees,” stated Michael Drew, VP of Enrollment.

This partnership allows NC Wesleyan to offer a one-time $250 University Award of enrollment in certificate classes to each Nashville employee during their last semester of enrollment. North Carolina Wesleyan University has certificate programs in Executive Leadership, Healthcare Administration, Human Resource Management and a Public Health Graduate Certificate that can be completed in as little as 16 weeks.

For those who are interested in pursuing their bachelor’s degree, NCWU will offer a $1,000 University Award at the end of the first semester of enrollment in undergraduate classes. Additionally, a second award of $1,000 will be presented at the end of their last semester, for a total University Award amount of $2,000.

Employees enrolling in NC Wesleyan’s Master of Business Administration (MBA), Master of Criminal Justice (MSCJ), Master of Public Health (MPH) or Master of Strategic Leadership (MSSL) degree programs will receive a $500 University Award at the end of their first semester of enrollment in graduate classes. In addition, NCWU will award a second amount of $500 at the end of their last semester, for a total University Award amount of $1,000.

Mutually benefitting all parties, this partnership allows Nashville employees to receive special rates to attend NCWU. In return, the school system will market this opportunity and NC Wesleyan’s programs to all of their employees. In addition, the Town of Nashville will afford NC Wesleyan University an opportunity to educate their employees through email, on-site opportunities, flyers, brochures and the posting of other promotional materials. Nashville employees must remain employed with the school system in order for the employee to remain eligible for this award.

Register Now for NC Wesleyan University’s Fall Open House


North Carolina Wesleyan University’s Fall Open House is scheduled for Saturday, October 21, 2023 and registration is now open. During this event, students will learn more about scholarships and financial aid, the admissions process, speak with faculty and current students, meet President Evan D. Duff and take a campus tour. Attendees can also bring their transcript in order to potentially receive on-site admission and scholarship decisions. Prospective students will receive a free t-shirt, eat lunch in the newly enhanced café and receive tickets to cheer on the Battling Bishops football team as they take on Southern Virginia that day.  

Attendees at NCWU's winter open house in 2023

“Open House at NCWU is an exciting time for us to meet prospective students and their families, while giving them a unique opportunity to experience a glimpse of our Wesleyan Family. We’re excited to welcome future Bishops and show them what it means to provide an education that is Personal, Practical and Purpose-Driven,” stated Paige Price Wells, Director of Admissions.

This year’s Open House will begin at 9:00 a.m. with check-in at The Dunn Center. Prospective students planning to attend must register before Thursday, October 19 at ncwu.edu/openhouse or by contacting the Office of Admissions at 252.985.5200.