2018 PCC Year in Review: Part II (May–August)

During his first convocation speech as PCC president, Dr. Lawrence Rouse tells more than 400 employees that their top priority is to ensure the college is "student-centric." He says PCC must provide the innovative services, programs and assistance that help students reach their full potential.

WINTERVILLE—The middle portion of 2018 for Pitt Community College was highlighted by a large graduating class, the celebration of retiring President G. Dennis Massey’s career, and Dr. Lawrence Rouse becoming just the fifth president in PCC’s 57-year history.

The following is the second of three installments recapping events that took place at North Carolina’s sixth-largest community college in 2018.


  • Spring Commencement features 653 of the 1,304-member graduating class participating. Collectively, the class earns more than 1,800 degrees, diplomas and/or certificates.
  • During graduation, trustees present Distinguished Service Awards to President G. Dennis Massey and former PCC Trustee Michael Overton.
  • Diverse: Issues in Higher Education magazine lists PCC as one of 18 “Most Promising Places to Work” in community colleges.
  • A nationwide search for Massey’s successor concludes with the State Board of Community Colleges approving Dr. Lawrence Rouse as PCC’s next president.
  • The college honors Massey with a scholarship fundraiser at Rock Springs Center. More than 325 attend and raise more than $40,000 for the PCC Foundation, including $10,000 from Southern Bank to establish the Dr. Dennis Massey Endowed Scholarship.
  • Respiratory Therapy presents a plaque to retiring Medical Director Robert Shaw in commemoration of 35 years of service.
  • VISIONS celebrates the upcoming graduations of its high school participants with an event featuring awards and words of encouragement from staff and key program partners.
  • For the second straight year, Coach Jennie Harp leads PCC Softball to the NJCAA Division II National Championships.
  • PCC’s National Society of Leadership and Success (NSLS) chapter receives a Distinguished Chapter Award from the national organization, while Faith Fagan, a PCC administrative assistant, is named NSLS Advisor of the Year.
  • The college launches its newly-redesigned website after more than a year of preparations by AndiSites, Inc., and a five-member web committee from PCC.
  • For the second straight year, Pitt’s Jasmin Spain and Nicholas Vick lead a classroom management presentation during an international teaching and leadership conference.


  • A special registration event for fall semester offers adult learners a chance to complete admission and enrollment requirements in a single day.
  • PCC holds an informational program for nontraditional students considering a return to higher education or first-time college enrollment.
  • American Legion Post #39 provides a $2,000-check in support of its Nursing Scholarship Endowment Fund with the PCC Foundation.
  • After awarding more than $350,000 during the 2017-18 academic year, the PCC Foundation thanks supporters during its annual Distinguished Donor Reception.
  • Summer Splash gives students and employees a chance to enjoy fun in the sun with Caribbean music and games.
  • Pitt and University of Mount Olive administrators sign an agreement giving graduates from three different PCC business programs an opportunity to seamlessly transfer to UMO in pursuit of four-year degrees.
  • The Kiwanis of the Golden K Foundation presents a $1,000-check to the PCC Foundation in support of the Ricks Automotive Scholarship.
  • 2018-19 Student Ambassadors meet for the first time to begin preparations for the upcoming academic year. The 12-member group features nine new faces and three returnees.
  • VISIONS holds its annual Summer Institute to welcome 73 new students into the fold. The students participate in hands-on activities and seminars to gain information that will help them choose college majors that best fit their career goals.
  • Joe Quinones-Mason is named an NJCAA DII 1st Team Baseball All-American, while softball’s Taylor Carroll earns NJCAA DII Second Team All-American honors.
  • Greenville’s Koinonia Christian Center presents a $10,000-check to the PCC Foundation in honor of Continuing Education Dean Kristin Braswell. The funding will help Continuing Education purchase training equipment and provide student scholarships.


  • Newly-elected Student Government Association President Shella Satur is excited about serving as the voice of PCC’s student body during the 2018-19 academic year.
  • Three PCC students commit to a new internship with Piedmont Service Group that will help them prepare for HVAC careers.
  • PCC hosts a graduation ceremony for Fire Academy XI.
  • The State Board of Community Colleges holds its regularly-scheduled business meeting on the PCC campus. The session begins with Massey addressing board members for the final time as PCC president.
  • Radiography student Jennifer Letchworth receives the 2018 Karen Lee Memorial Scholarship worth $1,000.
  • After 18 years with the PCC Police Department, Chief Jay Shingleton retires, and Tyrone Turnage Jr., a PCCPD captain, is promoted to chief.


  • Rouse begins his duties as president. The South Carolina native joins PCC from nearby James Sprunt Community College, bringing with him more than 36 years of community college administration experience.
  • Students earn portable industry credentials in four weeks through “Tools for Advanced Manufacturing and Pharmaceutical Industry” training.
  • Rouse holds his first press conference as PCC president to introduce himself to local media.
  • PCC and Pitt County Schools administrators cut the ribbon on a new home for the Pitt County Early College High School. The 13,000-square-foot building features eight classrooms and a multipurpose room.
  • With the start of fall semester, PCC officially becomes a smoke-free campus.
  • For the eighth straight year, PCC barber students provide free haircuts and school supplies to children.
  • 1998 PCC graduate Dale A. Morrill, an Assistant District Attorney for Durham County, receives the National Association of Prosecutor Coordinators’ 2018 National Traffic Safety Prosecutor of the Year Award.
  • PCC Career Services launches its new online jobs and career resources platform, “Bruiser’s Briefcase.”
  • PCC’s Medical Office Administration program tops TheBestSchools.org’s 2018 listing of the nation’s best online MOA degree programs.
  • Rouse enjoys breakfast with students as part of an event welcoming him to campus. He then helps kick off the PCC Foundation’s 2018 Employee Annual Fund before heading to the inaugural “World’s Greatest Vernon White Front Porch Party,” which showcases PCC study abroad opportunities.