May 282013



Stan and Amy Winstead both earned their master's degrees May 10 at East Carolina University College of Nursing.

Contributed photo

Stan and Amy Winstead both earned their master’s degrees May 10 at East Carolina University College of Nursing.

By Crystal Baity

Saturday, May 25, 2013

Stan and Amy Winstead didn’t include an advanced degree in their wedding vows 12 years ago, but mutual encouragement and support saw them through the past two years as graduate students in the East Carolina University College of Nursing.

Amy earned a master’s degree in nurse-midwifery and Stan a master’s degree in nursing leadership on May 10.

“We totally understood the dedication and amount of work it took to complete the program,” Amy said. “Some thought it would push us apart or be a strain on our relationship because we had no time for each other, but we feel it brought us closer together.”

Amy is a registered nurse in the Women’s Center at Nash Health Care in Rocky Mount and a medical examiner in Nash County. Stan is operations supervisor with WakeMed Mobile Critical Care Services in Garner.

The Red Oak couple have been in school together for five years. Both earned bachelor’s degrees in 
nursing from the University of Phoenix in 2010.

“We thought we would go back while we had a little bit of steam and were comfortable with the online environment,” Amy said.

Many days and nights were spent sitting across from each other at the dining room table tackling homework and research.

“The workload was almost unbearable at times, and had my parents not helped us with the children, we would not have accomplished our goals,” Stan said of his parents, Fred and Glenda Winstead of Nashville.

Amy’s son, Justin, 21, was able to help care for the younger boys, Matthew, 9, and Peyton, 11, and the grandparents were there to pick them up after school, prepare meals or do whatever else was needed.

Juggling work, children and home responsibilities and the time needed for coursework was a challenge. But Amy said she felt it was something she had to do.

She enjoys working with women, families and communities – a holistic approach that synchs with nurse midwifery. Amy started out in long-term rehabilitation, which is where she and Stan met. Then she transitioned to telemetry, IV therapy, and then nursery and prenatal education.

Stan’s background is trauma, having worked in emergency management services early in his career which led to emergency nursing and emergency management.

“My main focus over the past 10 years has been transport nursing which is very different from bedside nursing,” Stan said. “But this focus allowed me to maintain my interests in emergency preparedness. Infusing nursing theory and practice into the emergency management and disaster preparedness field is a popular trend now and certainly indicative of a nursing science that continues to produce new opportunities.”

Both have enjoyed the varied roles they’ve had in nursing.

“My career absolutely exemplifies the possibilities,” Stan said.

Both earned associates degrees in nursing from Nash Community College; Amy in 1999 and Stan in 1997. Stan, a Nash County native, graduated from Northern Nash High School in 1992.

Amy is originally from Nashville, Tenn., but has lived in Red Oak the past 16 years.

“Our students come from all over the state and country, so it was nice to have a student from Eastern North Carolina to place her in clinical sites in the area,” said Becky Bagley, clinical associate professor and director of ECU’s nurse-midwifery concentration. Amy spent the spring semester in an obstetrics-gynecological center in Elizabeth City.

While the couple has teased about going for a doctorate, they want to take a break now, Amy said.

via The Rocky Mount Telegram.

May 282013


Monday, May 27, 2013

Five Pitt County students are among 19 incoming freshmen selected for the prestigious EC Scholars program at East Carolina University.

Sydney Hendricks of Ayden, McKenzie Shelton of Stokes, and Lee Hoff, Ian McMillan and Jessie Tucci-Heron of Greenville received the four-year merit scholarship. The award recognizes outstanding academic performance, commitment to community engagement and strong leadership skills. Recipients are admitted to East Carolina University’s Honors College and receive a scholarship for four years, along with a stipend for study abroad, for a value of approximately $61,000.

Hendricks is a senior at Ayden-Grifton High School. She also has earned a spot in ECU’s Early Assurance program, which guarantees her admission to the Brody School of Medicine upon completion of her undergraduate degree. She is the daughter of Jeff and Allison Hendricks.

Shelton, a senior at North Pitt High School, plans to major in psychology and communications, with a minor in film studies She hopes to pursue a doctorate and eventually work with abused women and children. She is the daughter of Robert and Suzie Shelton.

Hoff, a senior at J.H. Rose High School, plans to double major in chemistry and biochemistry. He hopes to use opportunities through the Honors College to explore other cultures and eventually attend medical school in France. He is the son of Rebecca Latham.

McMillan is a senior at D.H. Conley High School and an intended biology major. He set his sights on ECU because of the prospects available through the Honors College such as study-abroad trips and networking opportunities with professionals. He is the son of Joe and Amy McMillan.

Tucci-Herron, also a senior at Rose, intends to study psychology at ECU. She is interested in the brain and is considering attending medical school. That interest stems, in part, from watching her sister, Jenna, grow up with high-functioning autism and attention deficit disorder. She is the daughter of Tadd Herron and Karen Tucci-Herron.

EC Scholar recipients have completed a rigorous three-tier selection process: meeting the Honors College admissions criteria, having an additional faculty review and completing an on-campus interview.

The incoming class of EC Scholars has an average combined math and verbal SAT score of 1344 and an average unweighted grade point average of 3.92.

While at ECU, the scholars must maintain a 3.5 cumulative GPA, complete research and leadership internships, participate in a study abroad experience and conduct a senior honors project.

via The Daily Reflector.

May 282013


Aileen Devlin/The Daily Reflecto

Attendees watch as D.H. Conley High School’s ROTC posts the colors during the Memorial Day celebration held at the Greenville Town Common on Monday, May 27, 2013. (Aileen Devlin/ The Daily Reflector)

Tuesday, May 28, 2013

By Michael Abramowitz

Memorial Day observances at the Town Common repeated honored traditions of centuries, but memories of the almost unbearable sacrifices of the nation’s war dead felt as clear and fresh as the moment they fought and died.

“It is proper and spiritual to remember the sacrifices of those young men and women we have lost,” U.S. Rep. Walter B. Jones Jr, who represents North Carolina’s 3rd District, said before the ceremony.

Jones pointed to the many veterans at the ceremony and remarked on the reverence with which they wore their hats and uniforms.

“This is an emotional time for those who left their buddies on the battlefield, one that those of us who have not been to war cannot understand,” he said.

Marine Corps League commandant and master of ceremonies Bryan Balow introduced members of the D.H. Conley High School Junior ROTC who posted the colors, followed by Emery Davis, father of a Navy veteran, who led the singing of the National Anthem, then the laying of wreaths at the foot of the memorial.

purplearrowUnder a cloudless sky and surrounded by veterans of many wars, keynote speaker Steve Duncan, director of military programs at East Carolina University, told the audience of more than 100 that the word “freedom” gains new richness as the country ages.

“The freedom we celebrate every day of our lives has been secured by the sacrifice of hundreds of thousands of America’s finest, who putting their own fears and doubts aside, answered the nation’s call to defend liberty,” Duncan said. “We have this special day to honor and remember those who gave all. The very act of their service and sacrifice is the reason we come together in collective spirit to honor the long line of defenders who have secured our nation’s greatness.”

Remembrances dating to the American Revolution and Civil War mingle with thoughts of those who fought and died in two world wars, Korea, Vietnam, Iraq and Afghanistan, including those who, today, stand in harm’s way to protect the constitution and the way of life Americans share, Duncan said.

Jones said he found records of his grandfather’s engagement in the battle of the Argonne Forest in World War I and the toll it took on his life. He had been injured by gas during the battle and came home a physical and emotional casualty, he said.

“He eventually took his life but was so sick leading up to that the Beaufort police chief often let him sleep in an unlocked jail cell,” Jones said. “I say this because, as we remember on this Memorial Day those who sacrificed their lives, we also must not forget their buddies who took care of them and came home. Let’s show we did not forget them.”

Jones said he and Rep. James McDermott of Washington, a former Navy psychiatrist during the Vietnam conflict, are co-sponsors of a bill that would create a presidential commission on veterans.

“We’ve got a ways to go, but we believe a presidential commission on veterans will assure they are never forgotten,” Jones said. “Nobody asks veterans returning from war what party they are in.”

Greenville Mayor Allen Thomas also recognized the special bonds formed between those war veterans attending the ceremony and those they left behind on battlefields around the world.

“The term ‘hero’ is often overused. This is one of those days when it really applies,” Thomas said. “Many here today are honoring friends who fought next to them but didn’t make it back. They often wonder why they survived when their friends made the ultimate sacrifice. What they died for, it matters.”

Contact Michael Abramowitz at or 252-329-9571.

via The Daily Reflector.

May 282013


Photo by Jay Clark/ECU News ServicesMay 2013 graduate Mary Highsmith is the fourth generation of family members who have graduated from East Carolina University. She will continue her career as a Pirate this fall by studying in the speech-language pathology master's degree program.

Photo by Jay Clark/ECU News ServicesMay 2013 graduate Mary Highsmith is the fourth generation of family members who have graduated from East Carolina University. She will continue her career as a Pirate this fall by studying in the speech-language pathology master’s degree program.

ECU Notes

Sunday, May 26, 2013

Leona Cox ended up on the front row when the 48 seniors in East Carolina Teacher Training School’s Class of 1915 gathered on the steps of Old Austin for their graduation photo.

“There she is in the middle,” her great-granddaughter, Mary Highsmith, said as she points to the now 98-year-old photo.

“What I am really hoping to do is to get accepted to graduate school here,” Highsmith said, “because that would mean I get my masters degree in 2015, exactly 100 years after the first one of our family.”

Highsmith, who completed her bachelor’s degree in health and human performance in May, did get accepted into the master’s degree program in speech-language pathology offered by the College of Allied Health Sciences.

She is the fourth generation of her family to graduate from East Carolina, a fact that the university historian said is rare.

The East Carolina tradition that Leona Cox Dexter started in 1915, was continued by her daughter, Catherine Dexter Highsmith, who received her bachelor’s degree in 1949 and a master’s in 1958.

Dexter was followed here by her daughter, Janet Blackburn, who got her bachelor’s in 1978 and a master’s in 1985.

Pupils in Pender County and Burgaw were taught by those three generations of East Carolina graduates.

Highsmith said she initially thought of going somewhere else.

“In high school I first applied to go to UNC-Wilmington, because it was close to home,” Highsmith said. “My mother and grandmother didn’t lobby me to come to East Carolina. They just said they thought it would be a good fit. And they were right. I am so glad I came here for lots of reasons, and one is what this means to my family.”

It is a bond made all the more tangible by the mementoes passed down to her. Highsmith enjoys looking at her great-grandmother’s 1915 ECTTS graduation program, pictures of her grandmother as an East Carolina Teachers College student in the 1940s, and pictures of her mother as an East Carolina University student in the 1970s.

University historian John Tucker said “it’s rare, even very rare” to have ECU graduates in four generations of one family.

This case is all the more unusual, Tucker said, because the bond between Highsmith’s family and East Carolina date all the way back to the school’s earliest incarnation as a teacher training school. ECTTS was just starting its third year when Highsmith’s great-grandmother arrived.

“That person has family roots that date all the way back to the institution as it began,” Tucker said.

Highsmith said the tradition followed by her great-grandmother, grandmother and mother will not end with her.

“One of my children will be the fifth generation,” she said.

Upcoming Events

Tuesday: Hurricane, severe weather awareness town hall meeting, 9 a.m.-11:30 a.m. Willis Building, 300 E. First St. Topics for discussion include hurricane climatology and impacts, forecasts for the 2013 hurricane season, severe weather preparedness at ECU and Pitt County Emergency Management operations. Free and open to the public. Contact Tom Pohlman at 328-6166 or

via The Daily Reflector.

May 282013



Monday, May 27, 2013

Three emergency physicians have joined the Brody School of Medicine at East Carolina University and its group medical practice, ECU Physicians.

Dr. Jennifer Bennett has joined the Department of Emergency Medicine as a clinical assistant professor. A native of Newport, she is a graduate of the U.S. Military Academy and has bachelor’s and medical degrees from ECU. She completed residency training in emergency medicine and internal medicine at ECU. She previously worked in the emergency department at Lenoir Memorial Hospital in Kinston.

Bennett is board-certified in emergency medicine.

Dr. Reginald Sherard has joined the department as a clinical assistant professor. A native of Goldsboro, he has a bachelor’s degree from Winston-Salem State University and a medical degree from Meharry Medical College in Nashville, Tenn. Before joining ECU, he worked at Lenoir Memorial Hospital. Sherard also served as an Army physician.

Sherard is board-certified in emergency medicine.

Dr. David Thomson has rejoined the department as a clinical professor. He will also serve as medical director of Vidant Medical Transport. He comes to Greenville from Syracuse, N.Y., where he was an emergency physician at several hospitals and was a clinical associate professor at Upstate Medical University. He previously worked at ECU from 1995 through 1998. Thomson has a medical degree from the University of Cincinnati College of Medicine and completed residency training in emergency medicine at the University of Pittsburgh. He also has an executive master’s degree in public administration from Syracuse University.

Thomson is board-certified in emergency medicine. His clinical and research interests are air medical transport and health care policy as it relates to emergency medicine. He is a member of the board of directors of the Association of Air Medical Services and the secretary of the MedEvac Foundation International.

Bennett, Sherard and Thomson see patients at the emergency department at Vidant Medical Center.

via The Daily Reflector.

May 282013



Monday, May 27, 2013

While every year thousands of high school students apply for college, only 25-50 percent of them are accepted. Some colleges use Affirmative Action to decide who to admit. That means if two applicants have the same grades and test scores, the college will admit the minority student. Colleges should not continue to use Affirmative Action because it is not fair and it hurts minority students.

First, Affirmative Action is not fair. For example at the University of Texas, “Average SAT scores for blacks admitted are much lower than whites. Blacks scored at the 52nd percentile, but whites scored at the 89th,” according to Terence Pell, president of the Center for Individual Rights. This is not fair.

Second, Affirmative Action hurts minority students. According to Pell, “Students admitted under preferential policies choose less-demanding majors, get lower grades and drop out at high rates.” These minorities are not successful in college.

Even though some people think Affirmative Action creates diversity in colleges, society is no longer segregated. Affirmative Action is not fair and hurts minorities. Therefore colleges should not continue to use it.


Student, DH Conley


via The Daily Reflector.

May 282013
A member of the ECU Police Department works the scene of an accident involving a motorist and a bicyclist at the intersection of 10th and Ormond streets on Thursday. No one was seriously injured. Call 329-9573 if you see a wreck, or send a photo to (Rhett Butler/The Daily Reflector)

A member of the ECU Police Department works the scene of an accident involving a motorist and a bicyclist at the intersection of 10th and Ormond streets on Thursday. No one was seriously injured. Call 329-9573 if you see a wreck, or send a photo to (Rhett Butler/The Daily Reflector)

Monday, May 27, 2013

A bicyclist was injured near 10th Street after he rode into the path of a car on the East Carolina University campus, according to ECU police.

Jamarcus Jamal Paterson of Cadillac Street in Greenville rode off a sidewalk into Ormond Street about 11:35 p.m. on May 16. He was hit by a 2007 Honda operated by Alexander Ian Rodgers of Hendersonville, who was driving about 5 mph, a crash report said.

The bike collided with the front of the car. Patterson suffered minor injuries and was treated at Vidant Medical Center.

The bicyclist was cited for failing to yield the right of way. The wreck occurred in front of Chistenbury Gym.

The wreck was among several in Greenville recently that involved injury or significant damage. Reports released by the Greenville Police Department between May 16 and Wednesday offered the following details. Crash reports do not provide the age of people involved in wrecks.

via The Daily Reflector.

May 282013


By Nathan Summers

Monday, May 27, 2013

The East Carolina football team hopes Lucas Thompson will be a Pirate soon, but he isn’t one yet.

The prized defensive back from Winter Garden, Fla., signed with the Pirates back in February of 2012, and he hasn’t played organized football since. Thompson failed to qualify for the ’12 season, but opted not attend a junior college while he worked on meeting academic qualification standards.

More than a year later, Thompson is still committed to the Pirates, whose secondary could likely use a player of his caliber immediately. It was hoped he would be in school by the start of ECU’s first summer session, but classes began on May 14 without Thompson being enrolled, according to ECU sources.

“We’re hoping to have Lucas here for the second session of summer school, and he’s done well with everything we’ve asked as far as academics,” ECU head coach Ruffin McNeill said last week, noting that he spoke with Thompson recently. “We should know something definite pretty soon.”

The 6-foot-1, 190-pound Thompson initially committed to McNeill and the Pirates during halftime of the Under Armour All-America Game two years ago.

Despite the long layoff, McNeill said he thinks Thompson will still be able to make a smooth transition to the college game.

“The way our team trains — and he’s such a good football player and an even better kid — he’ll come in and get around our kids and they’re going to love him because he’s just like they are,” McNeill said of Thompson. “There is always an adjustment period, and he’s not going to come in here and be Ed Reed right away, but I do think he can come in here and be ready to go with our coaches and his teammates.”


A pair of 2011 ECU signees, defensive back Glen Hilliard and wide receiver Donte Sumpter, left the program following spring drills with the team. Both sophomores who redshirted during the ’11 season, neither player earned a letter with the Pirates and both will presumably seek transfers.

“It’s competitive, and all our kids are competitive and when we recruit them, they want to play,” McNeill said. “They’re both great young men and they worked hard for us. I know they’ll have success at the schools they go to next, and it did not end with me on a negative basis at all. It happens. If we keep recruiting like we are, it’s going to be competitive, and there are only so many plays and so many reps.”

Sumpter and Hilliard join previous offseason roster losses like senior former running back Hunter Furr, who is committing his athletic time to track, and senior offensive tackle Grant Harner, whose chronic ankle injury ended his career prematurely.

Contact Nathan Summers at or 252-329-9595.

via The Daily Reflector.