Category Archives: Spotlight

Web portal tailored to assist veterans


The new ECU military portal, pictured above, provides a central location for resources to assist veterans, service members and military families. The site is available at


By Jamitress Bowden
ECU News Services

A new military web portal at East Carolina University offers a central location for discovering what ECU can offer student veterans, service members and their families.

Development of the site was initiated in February and came to life in June, thanks to collaboration across multiple departments on campus. The site provides virtual visitors with the ability to quickly navigate to the information they need on ECU’s web site, including contact information for staff members who can answer questions specific to the military population.

The military portal is just one of many resources available at ECU to enhance experiences for veterans and service members. The Student Veteran Services office in Brewster D107 provides support, resources and assistance for student veterans and service members. A Green Zone training program for faculty and staff enhances awareness about the unique needs of student veterans. A new student organization – Pirate Veterans – was formed in the spring, and an orientation session tailored to new student veterans is in the works.

“The whole goal is to make East Carolina military friendly,” said Dr. Steve Duncan, assistant vice chancellor for administration and finance and military programs.

Duncan said the ultimate goal for the web portal was to create an uncomplicated process for members of the military and their families. “We’re not trying to make it an octopus. We are trying…to make a veteran feel comfortable and have enough information,” he said.

Trish Goltermann, SVS assistant director, said it was important to provide easily accessible information designed for the military. “If people of the military cannot find what they need quickly, we may lose them,” she said.

SVS graduate assistant John Kistler added that the website will help student veterans transition to college life. It is a move “in the right direction to help with every step of the process,” he said.

ECU student veteran and Pirate Veterans president Dustin Hawley said that returning to campus as a new student following military service felt strange and presented extra challenges. Student veteran Chad Merewether agreed. “The hardest part was finding the right places,” Merewether said. “With student veterans, I wasn’t sure if that was paperwork or benefits. That was vague, but eventually I figured everything out.”

“A webpage that walks you through would be great,” Merewether said, and added that a veteran event at the beginning of the semester would be a good way “to build a community and a comfort.”

“I always thought it would be nice to have somewhere to go where I could get help,” said Hawley. “I’m really happy with the direction that ECU is going.”

Awards day highlights excellence, service


Left to right, UNC Board of Governors Chairman Peter Hans, ECU Provost Marilyn Sheerer and ECU Chancellor Steve Ballard applaud during the University Awards Day celebration May 1. (Photos by Cliff Hollis)


By Jeannine Manning Hutson
ECU News Services

The fourth annual Founders Day and University Awards Celebration recognized “the best of East Carolina University” on May 1 in Hendrix Theatre.

Provost Marilyn Sheerer welcomed those nominated. “Today we recognize these important aspects of ECU and the recognize the best of ECU. You are the heart of this university,” she said.

UNC Board of Governors Chairman Peter Hans recognized Dr. Sam Sears, who was announced April 12 as the O. Max Gardner Award recipient. The award is the highest UNC-system honor and is given to a faculty member, who during the current scholastic year has made the greatest contribution to the welfare of the human race.

“I’m proud that a member of the ECU faculty is receiving this award for the eighth time and the third time since 2003,” said Hans.

Sears, who is director of ECU’s doctoral program in health psychology, is the world’s leading expert and most prolific author on the psychological implications for patients living with an implantable cardioverter defibrillator, or ICD. “Your research reaches more than 1,000 patients each year as they learn to cope with the life-saving technology that gives high voltage shocks when it detects arrthymias,” Hans said.

Sears said of receiving the award, “This is the biggest honor of my academic life. And like the Heisman, it’s an individual award for a team sport. Science, health care, and universities are team sports.”

Sears holds faculty appointments in the Department of Psychology and Department of Cardiovascular Sciences.


Dr. Sam Sears, winner of the 2013 O. Max Gardner Award, speaks at ECU’s University Awards Day.

“The recognition of this award helps us to magnify the modern challenges for medicine, psychology and technology. Living through chronic diseases, not dying from them but living with them, means that patients will have to learn how to cope,” he said.

Sudden cardiac arrest is the No. 1 killer of American adults, Sears said. If the technology is there without the patient knowing how to live confidently, then the device is only “a widget,” he said.

Integration of medicine, psychology, nursing and allied professions are essential in treating these patients, and why East Carolina University is an exceptional place for the future, he said.

“This is a place that can respond to modern challenges,” Sears said. “This is not a stodgy medical school or stodgy campus. This is a place that says what are the new challenges and how can we address them. How can we come up with novel solutions to address novel problems? That’s academia. Industry can’t do it the way academia can.”

Read more about Sears at

Hans also recognized the recipient of the UNC Board of Governors Award for Excellence in Teaching, Dr. John W. Stiller in the Department of Biology.

In his comments, Stiller talked about the recent renovation of Howell Science Building Room 102 – specifically designed for student-centered, hands-on learning. In the fall, four sections of students in the introduction to biology classes will sit in groups of eight around a table with white boards, free to move about the room, and minimum lecturing. “Working together, the students will learn the high-level concepts and methodology,” he said.

Read more about Stiller’s approach to teaching at

Other awards presented during the ceremony were the following:

The UNC Board of Governors Distinguished Professor for Teaching Award recognizes and supports excellent teaching at each of the 16 constituent universities in the UNC system. Six ECU recipients were selected:

  • Dr. Sviatoslav Archava, Department of Mathematics
  • Dr. Keith Holmes, Department of Chemistry
  • Dr. Peng Li, Department of Technology Systems
  • Dr. Jeff Popke, Department of Geography
  • Dr. Deborah Thomson, School of Communication
  • Dr. Richard Williams, Department of Recreation and Leisure Studies

The 2012-13 recipients of the Scholar-Teacher Award, which is now in its 17th year, were recognized during Research and Creative Achievement Week. Recipients are as follows:

  • Dr. Paige Averett, School of Social Work
  • Patricia “Patch” Clark, School of Theatre and Dance
  • Dr. Qin Ding, Department of Computer Science
  • Dr. Kylie P. Dotson-Blake, Department of Higher, Adult & Counselor Education
  • Dr. Carol Goodwillie, Department of Biology
  • Dr. Andrew O. Herdman, Department of Management
  • Dr. Charles P. Humphrey, Department of Health Education and Promotion
  • Dr. Kim Larson, Department of Undergraduate Nursing Science, Senior Division
  • Dr. Philip A. Rothman, Department of Economics
  • Dr. Thad Wasklewicz, Department of Geography.

The East Carolina Alumni Association Awards for Outstanding Teaching went to Dr. Elizabeth A. Fogarty of the Department of Elementary Education and Middle Grades Education and Dr. Sharilyn C. Steadman, Department of Literacy Studies, English Education and History Education. Dr. Christy Ashley, Department of Marketing and Supply Chain Management, received the association’s Robert L. Jones Award for Outstanding Teaching.


ECU biology professor Dr. John W. Stiller received the UNC Board of Governors Award for Excellence in Teaching.

The Max Ray Joyner Award for Faculty Service through Distance Education honors a faculty member who has shown commitment and enthusiasm in teaching and mentoring off-campus students and who has demonstrated excellence in the delivery of courses through distance education. The recipient was Dr. Elizabeth Hodge, Department of Business Information Technology Education.

The recipient of the Lifetime Achievement for Research or Creative Activity was Dr. Roger A. Rulifson, Department of Biology. Dr. Thomas Herron, Department of English, and Dr. Baohong-Zhang, Department of Biology, received the Five-Year Achievement Award awards.

Dr. Rebecca J. Dumlao, School of Communication, received the Scholarship of Engagement Award, which recognizes a faculty member for achievement in scholarship of engagement and a sustained commitment to partnered scholarly endeavors with communities.

Read more about Rulifson, Herron, Zhang and Dumlao’s research at

Seven ECU faculty members received patents in the last year. They are Dr. Darrell Neufer, Department of Physiology; Dr. Ethan Anderson, Department of Pharmacology and Toxicology; Dr. Rachel Roper, Department of Microbiology and Immunology; and Drs. Michael Rastatter, Joseph Kalinowski, Andrew Stuart and Gregg Givens, all of Department of Communication Sciences and Disorders.

The chancellor presented the James R. Talton Jr. Leadership Award to Dr. Ron Perkin, chairman of the Department of Pediatrics. The award recognizes a servant leader, who serves others in his or her work through collaboration, empathy, trust and the ethical use of authority.

The Centennial Awards for Excellence were presented recognizing four areas: service, leadership, ambition and spirit. Recipients in the area of service were Dr. Catherine Rigsby, Department of Geology; Angela Anderson, Office of the Registrar; and James Sutton, Moving Services.

Recipients in the area of leadership were Dr. Linner Ward Griffin, associate provost for academic program planning and development; Julie Poorman, Financial Aid office; and the Pediatric Surgery Team of the Brody School of Medicine – Dr. David Rodeberg and Dr. Danielle Walsh.

And in the ambition category were Dr. Kerry Littlewood, School of Social Work; Stephanie Bailey, College of Allied Health Sciences; and the Kiosk Project at Laupus Library. Kiosk project team members are Jamie Messenger, Family Medicine; Katherine Rickett, liaison to Brody School of Medicine; and from Laupus Library, Roger Russell, Matthew Ballengee, Teresa Tripp, Jason Cottle and Jeff Coghill.


ECU Chancellor Steve Ballard gives a hug to Servire Society inductee Dr. Kathryn Kolasa, a Brody School of Medicine faculty member who recently announced her upcoming retirement.

Recipients of the spirit award were Carolyn “Waz” Miller of University Housing, and Elaine Hughes, Department of Kinesiology.

Chancellor Steve Ballard congratulated all the nominees and award recipients and noted it was good to take time to recognize campus achievements. “I see their accomplishments every day, but it’s good to be reminded of the great work that the faculty and staff do every day. You have my great appreciation for all that you do,” Ballard said.

The 2013 Servire Society Inductees, which is the sixth class, are as follows:

For faculty and staff: Harry Adams, Curtis Anderson, Margaret Arnd-Caddigan, Robin Ashley, Andy Bates, David Batie, Ashley Bonner, Elizabeth Carroll, Haozhe Chen, William Clark, Paul Clifford, Jeffrey Coghill, Susan Copeland, Josh Copenhaver, Kathleen Cox, Leonard Darby, Larry Donley, Penney Doughtie, Cheryl Dudasik-Wiggs, Christopher Duffrin, Donna Lou Edwards, Sylvia Escott-Stump, Tina Foster, Amy Frank, William Gee, Brian Glober, Marsha Hall, Dave Hannon, Dawn Harrison, William Hodges, Jennifer Hodgson, Casey Holland, Pamela Hopkins, Bryce Jorgensen, Kathryn Kolasa, Theodore Koutlas, Angela Lamson, Mandee Foushee Lancaster, Kim Larson, Charles Lesko, Aaron Lucier, Susan McCammon, Marianne Montgomery, Catherine Morgan-Smith, Vivian Mott, Sandra Nobles, Amanda Pantelidis, Nicholaos Pantelidis, Roman Pawlak, Annette Peery, Mary Pollock, Nancy Ray, John Rose, Ronald Sessoms, Michelle Taylor Skipper, Rick Smiley, Kirk St. Amant, Chris Stallings, Alan Taylor, Linda Teel, Lynn Tuthill, Danielle Walsh, Sandra Warren, Bryan Wheeler and Tiffany Woodward.

And the student inductees: Ajay Ajmera, Arun Ajmera, Alex Bryan, Ian Bryan, Christin Carter, Karsin Landis, Paula Loftin, Diana Luckhardt, Sheena Neil, Cody Smith, Amanda Stroud, Vivek Thanawala, Caitlin Thys and Kelly Walsh.

The Servire Society members have contributed 100 or more hours of volunteer service – without compensation and outside their normal realm of duties – to the community at large within the previous year.


New award recognizes excellence in mentoring



ECU professors David Taylor, left, and Melani Duffrin received awards for their work in mentoring graduate students conducting research during Research & Creative Achievement Week on campus. (Photo by Cliff Hollis)


By Doug Boyd and Caroline M’Coy
ECU News Services

Two professors have been named recipients of a new East Carolina University award recognizing excellence in mentorship of graduate students conducting research.

Dr. David Taylor, chair of the Department of Pharmacology and Toxicology at the Brody School of Medicine, and Dr. Melani Duffrin, professor in the Department of Nutrition Science, were honored as a Distinguished Graduate Faculty Mentors during ECU’s annual Research and Creative Achievement Week awards luncheon April 12.

A total of 47 faculty members were nominated for the awards. Mentoring has been identified as one of the most critical factors in student success nationwide, according to Tom McConnell, co-chair of the week’s events.

Taylor has been involved in the direct mentoring of three students at ECU and 11 during his career (three medical/doctoral students and eight doctoral students) as well as 11 postdoctoral fellows. He has served as a member of 16 dissertation advisory committees and two master’s thesis committees at ECU.

While he has directly mentored only some of the students who have pursued graduate degrees in his department, Taylor said he takes responsibility for some level of mentoring for all department students.

“This is a duty that I take very seriously and enjoy very much as the quality of our students is very high, which makes it a pleasure to participate in the nurturing process,” Taylor said.

“The graduate program currently has 15 students and has maintained a student population of 10 to 15 since 2005. I consider this award an unexpected honor and one that certainly humbles me and makes me appreciate the students who were involved in nominating me.”

Doctoral student Ben Thompson wrote a nomination letter for Taylor on behalf of several students in the department.

“We felt that he was deserving of it because he has always tried to provide every opportunity for us to improve ourselves as scientists,” Thompson said. “He never turns us away when we are in need of advice and is always willing to share his knowledge and insight.”

Since arriving at ECU in 2005, Duffrin has worked directly with 16 graduate students, acting as research project director for a dozen of those.

“Teaching and mentoring students within my research program is the best part of my responsibilities as a researcher and educator,” Duffrin said. “Watching students’ communication, problem-solving and self-directed learning skills improve is very rewarding.”

Among those nominating Duffrin for the newly created honor was ECU graduate student Ashley Roseno, who has worked closely with Duffrin since 2009. She said Duffrin’s guidance has been helpful to both her academic and professional growth.

“She is the type of mentor who invests in her students and their futures,” Roseno said. “She spends ample time with me ensuring I can handle the tasks at hand as well as plan for the future and what it may hold.  I never have to think twice about asking her for guidance in any situations that may occur.”

Mentoring has taught Duffrin, “to appreciate diversity and nurture individual differences in the learning process,” she said.

“There is a moment when a student will surprise themselves with what they are able to accomplish,” Duffrin added. “That is the best part of mentoring.”

Her research focuses on using food to teach math and science in K-12 schools – a process that also results in better understanding of nutrition, attitudes about food and dietary behaviors.

Pastors tour Brody labs, clinics


Eastern North Carolina pastors toured the Brody School of Medicine April 26 to gather information they can share with their congregations about healthy lifestyles and health resources. Pictured above, Dr. Wiley Nifong, second from right, prepares ministers for a tour of the robotics lab in the Warren Life Sciences Building. (Photos by Cliff Hollis)

By Crystal Baity
ECU News Services

The youth in the Rev. Richard Joyner’s church in Conetoe already are health ambassadors, growing vegetables and teaching neighbors about healthy lifestyles.

Joyner recruited more ambassadors April 26 as pastors from eastern North Carolina toured the Brody School of Medicine to learn about East Carolina University’s resources to share with their congregations and communities.

Developing relationships and creating partnerships in the communities that Brody serves is important in preventative health, said Dr. Paul Cunningham, dean of the Brody School of Medicine.

“Coming today is one of the processes to help us to understand what the resources are and to help us do preventative health, and not go to the emergency room for health care,” said Joyner, who also is director of pastoral care at Nash Health Care. Often clergy are involved when a church or family member of a congregant enters the hospital. “We want to reduce admissions by increasing education and the health of our community.”


Richard Joyner of Conetoe Chapel Missionary Baptist Church sits at the console where physicians from all over the world learn to operate the da Vinci robotic surgery equipment.

Eastern North Carolina’s health challenges include asthma, diabetes, stroke, high blood pressure, cardiovascular disease and obesity. Joyner’s county, Edgecombe, is representative of the region’s health maladies, which are two to five times higher for minority groups. North Carolina ranks as the 17th most obese state in the nation, and the South had the highest prevalence of obesity in 2011, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Joyner said he was performing more burials than weddings when he started at Conetoe Chapel Missionary Baptist Church 10 years ago. So the church initiated weekly education and exercise classes to empower local residents to take charge of their health. Since the exercise class began, one teen has lost 100 pounds and another wants to be a nurse anesthetist.

This summer, youth will to go door to door in a 20-mile radius around Conetoe, population 365, to survey 200 households about their lifestyle, medications and health history and create a health passport.

The church also started a 12-acre community garden and has 50 beehives, providing access to healthy foods. “It’s youth-driven,” he said. “The message is you don’t have to wait to be in a health care field. We’ve got to see ourselves as accountable and sustain our community partnerships.”

Joyner said Conetoe is a small community that wants to have a big impact. “We talk about ‘field to fork.’ We’re trying to put a real relationship with food and one’s physical life, spiritual life and educational life. If we get these right, we’re going to produce healthy resources.”

“The model you’re creating is something I tell people about all over the country,” said Cunningham, who would like to see it replicated across the region. “If it helps the community, it helps us.”

Cunningham told a story about a recent trip to visit his mother and uncle in Jamaica. He said he put on five pounds in three days with three hearty meals prepared for him each day including ackee and saltfish, a Jamaican favorite. “It goes right here,” said Cunningham, patting his mid-section. The same is true for salty pork dishes to desserts. “I’m not saying you can’t eat it at all, but do it three times a year, once in a while, not every day.”

Physicians recommend a diet loaded with fruits and vegetables combined with moderate exercise. Children need at least 60 minutes of exercise each day. Only half of high school students report they get the recommended amount, Cunningham said.

“The challenge in health is clear,” Joyner said. “Today is a beginning to get our communities over here, to get the medical students and nursing students in our communities more often, not just for health fairs, but to determine how we change lifestyles, which is a huge piece.”

Pastors toured the robotics lab in the Warren Life Sciences Building, the East Carolina Heart Institute at ECU and the pulmonology clinic and endoscopy center in Moye Medical Center.

The Rev. Roy Gray, pastor of Cedar Hill Missionary Baptist Church in Williamston, said the tour was an eye-opener. “We really need to get the word out,” he said, after trying his hand on the DaVinci Surgical System in the ECU Robotic Research and Training Center. “A lot of people don’t have a clue this equipment exists in eastern North Carolina.”



A slide from Dr. Paul Cunningham’s presentation to the pastors demonstrates the disparities in health care in Eastern North Carolina. Health in 41 eastern counties (shown in pink and dark pink) is worse than the rest of the state. Health in the 29 counties illustrated in dark pink is the poorest of all.

Two Pirates spend summer with NASA

Two students from East Carolina University will participate this summer in a competitive internship experience with NASA through the Langley Aerospace Research Student Scholars Program.



Lisbeth Soria, a senior pursuing a bachelor of science in industrial technology with a concentration in information and computer technology, and Kaveh Darafsheh, a graduate student in computer science, earned a spot among 200 internships out of 1,000 applicants. Both programs are housed in the College of Technology and Computer Science.

LARSS is a year-round internship program that offers three sessions in Hampton, Va. Soria and Darafsheh will participate in the 10-week program beginning June 3 – a paid research opportunity for students pursuing degrees in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM). In 2011, the program was named by Vault-Career Intelligence as one of its top 10 best internship programs out of some 800 that were evaluated.



“I hope to expand the knowledge and skills I have acquired at ECU while engaging and meeting other people in the same career field as myself while working with NASA and its mentors,” Soria said.

This May, Soria will be the first person in her family to graduate from a four-year institution. She added that she is very thankful for her parents’ sacrifices to provide her that opportunity.

Darafsheh said “the internship will allow me to take the theoretical knowledge I gained in the past year in an academic setting and apply it to a real world problem.”  He will be developing an application for distributed network synchronization through software development.

Both students said the TECS Career Center and department faculty helped them learn about the opportunity. Dr. Krishnan Gopalakrishnan and Dr. Junhua Ding in computer science and Lee Toderick in the BSIT program were instrumental in the recommendations required for the applications, they said.

“This experience will allow me to grow both professionally and personally,” Soria added. “I hope this will be only the beginning of many more successful opportunities to come.”

More information about the LARSS internship is available at


Graduates reach goals despite deployments


ECU May 2013 graduates Michelle “Shelley” Spencer, left, and Demetrius “D.J.” Baskerville juggled multiple deployments while working to obtain their degrees. (Photos by Cliff Hollis)


By Kathryn Kennedy
ECU News Services

Final exams and presentations don’t do much to raise the blood pressure of physical therapy student Michelle “Shelley” Spencer. But there’s nothing like being deployed twice to Iraq to put things in perspective.

Spencer, a Pamlico County native, was first deployed in 2005 after finishing her undergraduate degree. She spent 13 months leading a platoon assigned to convoy security with the U.S. Army in southern Iraq and Baghdad. She was part of the military police unit that relocated Abu Ghraib inmates when the prison was closed.

“…you improvise, adapt and overcome.”

– D.J. Baskerville

Upon her return to the states, she enrolled at East Carolina University in 2008 but her studies were interrupted again after two years.

Spencer, promoted to captain, withdrew from school to plan training events for more than 200 troops and prepare for deployment. Then it was back to Iraq in 2011 for seven months, this time leading three platoons spread across three different Army bases.

In May she graduated with a doctorate in physical therapy from the College of Allied Health Sciences  – a rigorous three-year degree program that includes 32 hours of clinical training. Surprisingly, she is not alone in successfully juggling military service and school.

“There are so many kids out there who are doing this,” said Spencer. “And they’re younger than me. Sometimes it’s deployment, sometimes it’s training.”

In fact, another student who graduated from ECU this spring, Demetrius “D.J.” Baskerville, has left school twice following orders from the U.S. Army.

Baskerville received his bachelor’s degree in special education from the College of Education. He was deployed to Iraq for 11 months in 2007 as a motor transport operator and again in 2011, this time to Kuwait as an operations and training sergeant.

“College was only supposed to take three years,” he said, smiling. “It has taken seven. But you improvise, adapt and overcome.”

It’s not always easy to adapt, however, when it comes to returning to campus after spending months overseas in a war zone. When Baskerville returned from his tour of duty in Iraq, the peers he had come to ECU with were about to graduate.

“You kind of feel like everyone’s forgotten about you,” Baskerville said. “Nobody understands your story.”

“Most of us are hyper-alert, or we are for a certain amount of time,” Spencer added. “What becomes your norm over there, is not the norm here.”

The support of family and friends helped both students through that transition, they said. And Spencer and Baskerville agreed the faculty in their programs went to great lengths to keep them on track and on top of their coursework.

Dr. Steve Duncan, assistant vice chancellor for Administration, Finance and Military Programs, said he’s proud of the way faculty members have risen to the challenge of supporting students who are reservists and veterans. It’s not uncommon, he said, to provide the work for these students in advance or to continue their education from a distance whenever possible.

“One percent of the people protect 99 percent of us,” Duncan said. “We do as much as we can for that one percent.”

To further these efforts, ECU recently established an office for Student Veteran Services within Student Affairs’ Office of Student Transitions to support students returning from military service.

“Everyone is part of a national defense answer,” Duncan said. “When you step up to help (student veterans), you are part of that answer.”

Lee challenges Chancellor’s Leadership Academy


Former senator and N.C. State Board of Education chair Howard Lee spoke to members of the Chancellor’s Leadership Academy Feb. 20. (Photos by Cliff Hollis)


By Steve Tuttle
ECU News Services

A good leader never debates whether a goal can be achieved, he or she “just goes out and does it,” former N.C. State Board of Education chair Howard N. Lee told a group of ECU faculty and staff Feb. 20 during a luncheon at the Chancellor’s Residence.

“All of us are born with the capacities that make good leaders,” Lee said at the event for members of the Chancellor’s Leadership Academy. “I did not grow up knowing I was a leader. Others saw that potential in me just like that potential has been seen in you.”

Lee, who chaired the State Board of Education from 2003 to 2009 after serving 10 years in the state senate, offered several insights into leadership for the two dozen or so academy members attending the luncheon.

“As a leader you cannot let your ego be a part of your decision-making. You have to believe in yourself without being sarcastic. Learn how to criticize your team members without being critical. Always share the credit, and never let them see you sweat.”

Today Lee is president of the Howard N. Lee Institute for Equity and Opportunity in Education, a Research Triangle Park nonprofit he founded to promote community engagement in support of public schools ( His career in public service began in 1969 when he was elected mayor of Chapel Hill, becoming among the first black mayors of a white Southern city. He said speaking to the Chancellor’s Leadership Academy was a special honor because the late Bill Friday also had addressed the group.

“Bill Friday and I were close for many years and we only had one spat. That was when (former ECU chancellor) Leo Jenkins started pushing for the medical school here. I came out strongly in favor of the idea and I lost many friends over that. Bill Friday opposed it. Years later he told me, ‘you were right and I was wrong.’”

That admission by Friday, who led the University of North Carolina system for 30 years, was itself a sign of leadership, Lee said. “A good leader will not be afraid of working with people you disagree with if you see that it’s in your mutual interest.”

Lee, 78, also served as secretary of the N.C. Department of Natural Resources and Community Development from 1977 to 1981. He said that was when he learned the wisdom of not waiting until all debate has been settled about an important issue before taking action.

“We had this idea then for a Mountains to the Sea Trail. Many of us thought that was a good idea but most said it was just too daunting to get anything done. But I thought I should do what I could, and we made some progress.”

Today, a little over half of the scenic walking trail is complete along its route from Clingman’s Dome in far western North Carolina to the Outer Banks. “As a leader you need to have a vision,” Lee told the faculty and staff members at the luncheon. In conclusion, he asked them, “What are you willing to do to help people?”

The Chancellor’s Leadership Academy ( is an intensive professional development experience for faculty and staff who are ready to expand their capacity for leadership in higher education and who are committed to enhancing their contribution to the university.


A large crowd gathered to hear remarks by Howard Lee.

Students win regional quiz bowl competition

ECU students Jacob Ridings, Beth Ackerman, and Jonathan Powell, left to right, were winners of the Southeast American College of Sports Medicine quiz bowl competition. (Contributed photo)

ECU students Jacob Ridings, Beth Ackerman, and Jonathan Powell, left to right, were winners of the Southeast American College of Sports Medicine quiz bowl competition. (Contributed photo)


Three East Carolina University students earned first place honors at the Southeast American College of Sports Medicine quiz bowl competition held February 14-16 in Greenville, S.C.

Three exercise physiology majors in the Department of Kinesiology in the College of Health and Human Performance made up the winning team. They were Jacob Ridings, Beth Ackerman and Jonathan Powell.

The ECU team defeated 19 other quiz bowl teams from across the region. The quiz bowl is styled after the television show “Jeopardy” with teams of three undergraduate students. Competition questions test students’ knowledge in a wide variety of exercise science related topics.

“The team’s success is a reflection of the excellent exercise physiology program at ECU,” said Kandy Houmard, teaching instructor and faculty mentor for the team. She said she was proud of the students who were “academically prepared” for the competition.

The winning team will represent the regional chapter at the national American College of Sports Medicine meeting in Indianapolis in May.


Nursing names distinguished alumna

Dr. Frances Eason, 2013 Distinguished Alumni Award winner

Dr. Frances Eason, 2013 Distinguished Alumni Award winner


Dr. Frances Eason has been named the ECU College of Nursing Distinguished Alumna for 2013.

Eason, professor of nursing, has been at the college since the 1960s, first as a student and then as a teacher. The Distinguished Alumni Award recognizes alumni who have made exemplary contributions to the nursing profession.

Inductees to the 2013 class in the College of Nursing Hall of Fame also have been announced. They are Becky Bagley, Linda Bolin, Susan Brinkley, Nancy Leggett-Frazier, Kathleen Johnson, Maura McAuliffe, Frank Moore, Tommie Pratt, Sue Taylor, Gene Tranbarger, Cheryl Whitaker and Joan Wynn.

The Hall of Fame recognizes significant contributors to nursing education, administration, research and practice. The program also supports a fund that provides merit-based scholarships for nursing students.

The inductees were honored at Rock Springs Center on March 1.

The ECU College of Nursing inducted the 2013 class of the Hall of Fame on March 1.

The ECU College of Nursing inducted the 2013 class of the Hall of Fame on March 1.

Med student uses art to teach about health

Brody School of Medicine student Parteek Singla describes an optical illusion to students at the Building Hope Community Center. (Photos by Cliff Hollis)

Brody School of Medicine student Parteek Singla describes an optical illusion to students at the Building Hope Community Center. (Photos by Cliff Hollis)

By Doug Boyd
ECU News Services

On a recent Friday afternoon at the Building Hope Community Life Center near downtown Greenville, approximately 10 middle and high school boys focused their attention on an optical illusion.

For the adolescent boys, the squinting was worth the effort: The illusion morphed into a color portrait of superstar Beyonce Knowles.

The activity was part of Brody School of Medicine student Parteek Singla’s Project JUMPST(ART), in which he uses art to teach the youth about health and healthful lifestyles. Singla is one of six East Carolina University medical and dental students who are 2012-13 Schweitzer Fellows. The students commit to a year of service with a community agency, devoting more than 600 hours to local communities lacking access to adequate health services.

“Today was the wrap-up session on our discussion of bullying,” Singla said afterward. “The purpose of the session was to illustrate to students that there are multiple ways of looking at an image. What one person sees may not necessarily be what another person sees. The same concept can be applied to people and how our perceptions of others can change if we took the time to look at them from another perspective.”

The activity also introduced students to optical illusions and helped them appreciate different art mediums.

“It’s really fun,” said Jahtwan Mooring, 11, a sixth-grader at C.M. Eppes Middle School. “He does a good job of showing us arts and crafts and getting us to do hand-on activities” while also teaching about health topics.


Carlos Braxton, left, and Avery Cotton-Wilson study an optical illusion designed to demonstrate that there are many ways to perceive an image.

The Schweitzer Fellows program conducted a Q-and-A with Singla about his project. An edited version follows:

Q: Why did you decide to develop your particular project?

A: I strongly believe in the importance of educating youth to create a strong foundation for the future. If you ask most young people today for a list of their role models, you will hear about pop artists, fashion models, actors and sports athletes.

While these individuals have worked hard to be successful, it is ironic that young people often choose role models whom they barely know. And with the media focusing on the faults of many of these role models, it is no wonder that young people can get confused about the meaning of success. Education can empower young people to make responsible, informed decisions.

The art aspect of my project stemmed from my parents doing art activities with me as a kid. I was really shy growing up, and art was an avenue for me to express myself in a way that I couldn’t do with words. Even to this day, I enjoy photography, which allows me to view the world through a different set of lenses. My project combines my dual interests in health and art and sees students learning about health topics by using art as a therapeutic medium.

Q: What do you hope will be the lasting impact of your project on the community it serves?

A: I hope that with a better understanding of health topics, students will make educated decisions that can reduce their health risks in the future. As a prospective physician, I think it is important to address youth education early to identify risk factors that can otherwise lead to chronic health problems.

By using art as a medium for health education, I hope that students will think about how they deal with challenges and encourage them to venture out of their comfort zones to try something new.

At the end of each semester, the project will culminate in a public gallery exhibit where parents will have the opportunity to visit the community center and see the art that the students have produced. Issues such as drinking, drug use and sex are often uncomfortable issues for students to discuss with their parents. However, I hope that as students become more knowledgeable, they become more empowered to ask questions that let their parents know of the issues in their lives. Rather than assuming that their kids are too young to understand, parents can use this project as a foundation to talk to their kids about the issues and be a role model by example.

Given the potential lasting impact on the community, I have involved students at the local university and plan to train them to conduct activities beyond the fellowship year for sustainability.
Q: What do you think is the most pressing health-related issue of our time, and how do you think it should be addressed?

A: There is no doubt that chronic diseases are important health-related issues of our time. Lifestyle risk factors that begin early in youth continue and build up to cause significant health risks later in life. Youth education is the best approach to reducing the incidences of chronic diseases.

If more focus can be placed on youth education about chronic diseases and risk factors, then individuals can adopt healthy behaviors early in life that will hopefully prevent them from having to deal with these issues in the future.

Q: What has been the most surprising element of your experience as a Schweitzer Fellow so far?

A: What has been most surprising is the high level of interest the students already have in art. The group has already been involved in painting a mural and has worked together to build a metal sculpture that is on display.

Students have talked with me about their favorite types of art, and some have brought their previous artwork to show the group. There are a lot of budding artists with enormous creativity within the group and it is rewarding to see how art has helped serve as an outlet for them to express their interests much in the same way art has helped me.

Q: What does being a Schweitzer Fellow mean to you?

A: Being a Schweitzer Fellow means being a part of a group working to make positive national change. I enjoy learning and working with other fellows and using their projects as a way to learn more about the issues in today’s society. I hope that by working with the other fellows, our work can be the pebble that creates a ripple effect to encourage others in the community to get out and give back.

Though “Fellows for Life” may be for Schweitzer Fellows, I see the group as a collective of all individuals everywhere working to make positive change in their communities. As Albert Schweitzer once stated, “Do something wonderful, people may imitate it.” In the same way, “Fellows for Life” are individuals who are constantly leading by example and motivating others everywhere to get out and make a difference.

More information about the Schweitzer Fellowship program is available at

ECU holds second Empty Bowls event

At ECU's Empty Bowls event, art education professor Nanyoung Kim selects a handmade bowl. More than 450 bowls were available for participants. (Photo by Cliff Hollis)

At ECU’s Empty Bowls event, art education professor Nanyoung Kim selects a handmade bowl. More than 450 bowls were available for participants. (Photo by Cliff Hollis)


ECU News Services

Members of the East Carolina University community joined in the second annual Empty Bowls event on campus Feb. 7.

Empty Bowls is an international grassroots effort to raise money while reminding participants of all the empty bowls in the world. Guests purchase tickets for a meal of soup and bread, along with a handmade bowl. At ECU, the bowls were donated by the ECU Ceramics Guild.

“Empty Bowls is a wonderfully unique fundraiser that gives our community a chance to come together and help those in need,” said Sara Kurtz, president of the ECU Ceramics Guild.  “Service is a big part of the mission of the Ceramics Guild and we are thrilled to be a part of this event.”

All funds were donated to the Greenville Food Bank to combat hunger in the community. Mary Esther Baker, development officer for the Food Bank of Central & Eastern North Carolina, said the organization was grateful for fundraisers like Empty Bowls, which “create awareness of hunger in the community and raise funds to support our mission: ‘No one goes hungry in central & eastern North Carolina.’

“There are more than 100,000 of our neighbors in eastern North Carolina for whom food insecurity is a daily reality,” Baker said.

The event was sponsored by ECU Campus Living and Dining and the ECU Ceramics Guild. Local sponsors included Peasant’s Pub, Starlight Café, The Scullery, Winslow’s, The Tipsy Teapot, Starbucks, UBE, La Bendicion bakery and ARAMARK.

Laupus exhibit features Breuer’s paintings

Neurologist Dr. Anthony C. Breuer, right, speaks with Dr. Walter Pories at the art exhibit featuring Breuer's work. (Photo by Cliff Hollis)

Neurologist Dr. Anthony C. Breuer, right, speaks with Dr. Walter Pories at the art exhibit featuring Breuer’s work. (Photo by Cliff Hollis)


ECU News Services

Dr. Anthony C. Breuer, affiliate professor of neurology in the Brody School of Medicine and a neurologist at East Carolina Neurology, is showcasing his collection of acrylic and oil paintings at the Art as Avocation exhibit Jan. 29 through March 12 at Laupus Library. Pictured above, his work depicts recognizable see-through images in multiple layers, at times warped to more closely resemble their “actual” appearance in spacetime.

The spring semester exhibit is the third in the Art as Avocation series, which Laupus Library began last year as a way to highlight the artistic talents and self-expression of faculty, staff and students from the Division of Health Sciences who often pursue demanding health care and higher education careers.

Visitors are welcome during normal operating hours posted at or call 252-744-2219. Visit to learn more about the artist or series.

Southern Bank endows EC Scholar award


Gloria Morgan (left) and Southern Bank CEO Grey Morgan (center) introduce themselves to EC Scholar Rachel Mehaffey during a Jan. 30 luncheon at ECU. (Photo by Cliff Hollis)


By Kathryn Kennedy
ECU News Services

The Southern Bank Foundation has established an endowment to fund an EC Scholars award at East Carolina University in the amount of $400,000.

The four-year merit scholarships are awarded annually and recognize outstanding academic performance, commitment to community engagement and strong leadership skills. Recipients receive a scholarship for four years, along with a stipend for study abroad, for a total value of approximately $45,000.

“This partnership with Southern Bank is especially important to our efforts to provide exceptional educational opportunities to East Carolina University’s best and brightest students,” said Dr. Richard Eakin, interim dean of the Honors College.

The EC Scholars Program was established in 1998 and, today, is housed within the Honors College at ECU. To date, 70 endowments have been established to support the scholarships.

“Southern Bank’s support of the Honors College demonstrates our commitment to the University as well as to the markets we serve,” said Wayne Murphy, senior vice president for Southern Bank’s central region.

“We understand that growth in eastern North Carolina can only come through a better educated workforce. After meeting a few of the Honors students and hearing more about the seminars and focus on community embedded in the program, we are pleased to see that commitment to community and market is a shared vision by the university.”

The Southern Bank Foundation makes charitable gifts to support programs in communities served by Southern Bank and Trust Company. Founded in 1901, Southern Bank is a wholly owned subsidiary of Southern BancShares (N.C.), Inc. With its corporate headquarters located in Mount Olive, the bank has total assets of approximately $2 billion and a branch network spanning North Carolina and Virginia.

Nursing, business in top rankings

By Crystal Baity
ECU News Services

Two graduate programs at East Carolina University rank among the best nationally in online education in a listing released Jan. 15 by U.S. News & World Report.

The ECU College of Nursing ranked 10 out of 72 master’s or doctorate of nursing practice programs in the country. The online Master of Business Administration program in the College of Business ranked 40 out of 148 graduate business programs. The complete listing of online education programs can be viewed at

U.S. News ranked online master’s degree programs in business, engineering, nursing, education and computer information technology on criteria including student engagement, faculty credentials and training, admissions selectivity and student services and technology.

Online degrees have been growing in popularity the past 10 years driven in part by a competitive job market and stagnant economy, according to U.S. News.

ECU’s College of Nursing has been consistently named by U.S. News as one of the largest distance education programs in the country since 2004. The current rankings assess quality categories over size.

“Our investment in distance education allows us to connect our students to campus using virtual clinics and to nursing scholars around the world through streaming video and conferencing technology,” said Dr. Sylvia Brown, dean of the ECU College of Nursing. “The beauty of our graduate distance education strategy is that students, who are all registered nurses, can fill vital nursing positions while pursuing their graduate degrees.”

Nursing offers seven online options in the master’s of science nursing program: adult-gerontology nurse practitioner, clinical nurse specialist, family nurse practitioner, neonatal nurse practitioner, nursing education, nursing leadership and nurse midwifery. Of 704 total students enrolled in the MSN program, 606 – or 86 percent – are distance education students.

The online program in the College of Business has grown from a single course offering in 1998 to undergraduate and graduate degrees in several concentrations. It is the largest online MBA program in the UNC system.

Of 797 total students enrolled in the MBA program last fall, 629 – or 79 percent – were distance education students.

All required courses are available online, so MBA students can earn a degree without having to come to campus.

“The College of Business is very proud to rank among the top nationally in online education for the second year in a row,” said Dr. Stan Eakins, dean of the College of Business. “Whether online or in the classroom, our MBA program continues to maintain high standards in preparing the next generation of leaders. There is no higher level of accomplishment for us than students who value their educational experience, benefit directly from it, and go on to make a difference in their communities.”

Grant to help recruit minority dental students

ECU News Services

East Carolina University is one of a handful of schools nationwide that is participating in a program to recruit and retain minority dental students.

The ECU School of Dental Medicine, working with N.C. A&T State University, will focus on minority students through the Dental Pipeline National Learning Institute.


Dr. Margaret Wilson
Associate dean for student affairs
ECU School of Dental Medicine

Introduced by the American Dental Education Association in partnership with the University of the Pacific Arthur A. Dugoni School of Dentistry, the institute is a new training program dedicated to increasing recruitment and retention among underserved student communities at dental schools.

Nine other U.S. universities are participating in the program with the goal of creating a diverse workforce of dentists who understand the oral health care needs of patients from underserved populations. ECU began work on the project in October.

Participating schools will receive $12,000 from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, along with other support and resources such as access to online courses and fundraising tutorials.

ECU, N.C. A&T, the Old North State Dental Society and North Carolina’s historically black colleges and universities will collaborate to implement the project, focusing on the recruitment and retention of under-represented minority dental students in North Carolina. This project builds on ECU’s commitment to meeting health needs of diverse and underserved communities and on N.C. A&T’s track record of educating students who are prepared to assume leadership roles in their professions and communities.

“The project funding will further support the ECU School of Dental Medicine’s mission to educate dentists who will provide oral health care within communities of need across North Carolina,” said Dr. Margaret Wilson, associate dean for student affairs at the ECU School of Dental Medicine. “We are especially pleased to be collaborating with Dr. Dinitra White of North Carolina A&T State University and Drs. Roslyn Crisp and L’Tanya Bailey of the Old North State Dental Society in this important endeavor.”

Other dental schools participating in the NLI include the Georgia Health Sciences University College of Dental Medicine, the Harvard School of Dental Medicine and the Indiana University School of Dentistry.

“Our goal for the National Learning Institute is to create an environment that embraces differences so that future dentists can learn effectively,” said Kim D’Abreu, ADEA senior vice president for access, diversity and inclusion. D’Abreau also said the project aims to increase awareness about the discrepancy in dental health and dental care among underserved populations.

The Dental Pipeline effort is based on the concept that dental institutions can address the access- to-dental-care crisis by recruiting and admitting more students who come from underserved student communities, increasing cultural competency of all students and educating dental students through community rotations in health centers and other safety net dental settings, such as ECU’s community service learning centers. These principles served as the basis of a decade-long nationwide effort among dental schools and community partners that has positively impacted dental education and access to care.

Students interested in learning more about the ECU program can receive updates via the school’s Facebook page at They may also contact the ECU dental school admissions office at

More information on the Dental Pipeline National Learning Institute is online at

Teachers of the Year honored

Jennifer Lilly, a Teacher of the Year from CamTech High School in Camden County, speaks to colleagues at a celebration for outstanding teachers sponsored by ECU’s College of Education on Dec. 6. (Contributed photos)


Eighteen Teacher of the Year recipients from eastern North Carolina were honored at a Dec. 6 event sponsored by East Carolina University’s College of Education. The event, titled “Each One-Reach One,” served as a celebration of outstanding educators and their positive impact within the region.

Joining the Teachers of the Year were first- and second-year educators. The novice and veteran educators represented the following counties: Beaufort, Bertie, Camden, Clinton City, Craven, Cumberland, Edgecombe, Gates, Halifax, Hertford, Hyde, Jones, Lenoir, Northampton, Onslow, Pitt, Vance and Wilson.

Invitations were issued to each member of the Latham Clinical Schools Network, which comprises 36 counties within eastern North Carolina. Several of the educators honored are alumni of the College of Education’s teacher education programs. During the event, the educators brainstormed how to better promote the profession of teaching. When asked what kind of individuals they wanted to see join the profession in the future, the educators noted they wanted to see new teachers who were “passionate about the profession, compassionate about others, and tech savvy to meet the needs of 21st century learning.” Within the discussion on how to promote teaching as a career choice, the Teachers of the Year shared that there is a need to “get the media and legislators more involved in understanding the positive experiences that are happening in classrooms.”

In addition to sharing recruitment strategies, these outstanding educators were asked to videotape themselves sharing their thoughts about why they teach. The individual clips will be combined to create a promotional video to share with potential teacher education students at spring recruitment events. The positive messages shared will provide prospective students with excellent examples of quality teachers who are proud of their profession.

For more information about recruitment efforts for the College of Education at East Carolina University, please contact Laura Bilbro-Berry, Assistant Director of Teacher Education, at or via phone at 252-328-1123.

Music grad wins international competition


Above, ECU music graduate Mary-Jean O’Doherty competes to win an international voice competition in Paris.


ECU associate professor of voice John Kramar in the School of Music reported that 2005 graduate Mary-Jean O’Doherty (bachelor of music in voice and flute performance major) won first prize in the Paris Opera Awards Competition, an international voice competition.

ECU graduate Mary Jean O’Doherty

She performed arias from Delibes’ Lakmé and Strauss’ Ariadne auf Naxos.

O’Doherty has recently sung the title role in Donizetti’s Lucia di Lammermoor in Prague, and participated in Opera Theatre of Saint Louis’ Young Artist Program. She is now understudying the title role in Berg’s Lulu for the Welsh National Opera.

Read more about O’Doherty and see more video at

Donica appointed to state board

Denise Donica

Dr. Denise Donica, assistant professor of occupational therapy at East Carolina University, has been appointed by Gov. Bev Perdue to a four-year term on the North Carolina Board of Occupational Therapy.

Donica is the first from ECU to serve on the seven-member board, which oversees regulations and licensing for all occupational therapists and occupational therapy assistants in North Carolina. Her term ends Oct. 1, 2016.

Donica is a certified handwriting specialist and researcher in the efficacy of handwriting curriculums and student success. She also is faculty advisor of ECU’s Delta Beta Chapter of Pi Theta Epsilon, the national honor society for occupational therapy students and alumni. The chapter is the only one in North Carolina and one of 80 active chapters in the United States.

Donica received a bachelor’s degree in psychology/criminal justice, and a bachelor’s degree in occupational therapy from Indiana University, and a master’s and doctoral degree in occupational therapy from the University of Indianapolis.


ECU Club Baseball wins NCBA Fall Invitational

The ECU Club Baseball team was winner of the 2012 Fall Invitational Championship tournament in Greenville, S.C. (Contributed photo)


The East Carolina University club baseball team overcame early struggles and rallied to win the National Club Baseball Association Fall Invitational baseball tournament this weekend in Greenville, S.C.

ECU club baseball won the NCBA World Series in 2011 and is the defending Middle Atlantic South Conference champion.

In the opening game this weekend, ECU gave up nine runs in the 5th inning and and lost to Furman 11-10. ECU bounced back with wins against Georgia Southern (14-0) and perennial powerhouse Virginia Tech (5-3). Of the major club baseball programs who participated in the tournament in recent years, only ECU advanced to the semifinals. Virginia Tech, Appalachian State, Clemson and Georgia were all eliminated.

In the semifinal game, ECU battled Middle Atlantic South Conference foe Elon. The Pirates jumped ahead early and never looked back, defeating Elon 8-4 to advance to the championship game. UNC-Charlotte defeated Kennesaw State, a Division II World Series team a year ago, to set up the meeting with the Pirates.

The championship game was very close early and tied 2-2 going into the 5th inning, when ECU plated eight runs to take a 10-2 lead. The Club Pirates scored two more runs in the 6th inning and built the lead to 12-2. By tournament rule, a ten-run lead after six innings prompted the mercy rule and ended the game.

Jim Leggett, ECU senior from Rocky Mount, pitched four innings and gave up only two runs. Brandon Taylor, a sophomore from Maryland, pitched two scoreless innings. On the offensive side, David Troutman, a sophomore from New Jersey, delivered a three-run homerun in the 5th inning to expand the ECU lead to 10-2.

ECU scored 40 runs during the five-game tournament.

Club Sports is a part of the ECU Campus Recreation and Wellness. Club baseball is one of 42 club programs at ECU with more than 900 students competing. For more information about the ECU Club Baseball team or club sports in general, contact Justin Waters, assistant director of club sports at (252) 737-2713 or via e-mail at

Bauer appears in ‘Our State’ magazine


East Carolina University English professor Margaret Bauer, editor of the North Carolina Literary Review, was interviewed in “Our State” magazine’s December 2012 issue about NCLR, produced annually at ECU.

The article referred to NCLR as “one of the South’s most unusual and respected annual literature publications.”  “…This isn’t your grandfather’s academic journal,” the article stated.

Visit Our State.

Read the article.

Read more about Bauer.

Joyner Library honors thesis award winner

Joyner Library at East Carolina University honored the winner of the 2012 Michael F. Bassman Honors Thesis Award during a ceremony Tuesday, Dec. 4.


Greenville native Danielle N. Martin was recognized as the winner of the 2012 Michael F. Bassman Honors Thesis Award, which recognizes excellence in research and writing by students in East Carolina University’s Honors College. Martin is a senior in the Honors College, majoring in multidisciplinary studies with a concentration in neuroscience.

The award, which is sponsored by Joyner Library, is in the amount of $500 and honors associate professor of Foreign Languages and Literatures, Dr. Michael F. Bassman. He was formerly associate vice chancellor of the Honors Program and was its first Distinguished Honors Professor.

Martin’s award-winning paper is entitled “The Ever-Changing Social Perception of Autism Spectrum Disorders in the United States.” The paper has been accepted for publication in the peer-reviewed journal, Explorations: the Journal of Undergraduate Research and Creative Activities for the State of North Carolina.

“Joyner Library maintains a strong tradition of supporting undergraduate research on the ECU campus. The Bassman Award, created with the generous support of Dr. Bassman and the ECU community, allows us to further this important work, said Jan Lewis, interim dean of Academic Library and Learning Resources.  “We are especially delighted that Danielle Martin is our winner this year, as she exemplifies the very best of ECU, the Honors College and the EC Scholar’s program.”

During her time at ECU, Martin has also been the recipient of the Phi Kappa Phi Outstanding First Student Award and the Milton Harrington EC Scholars Award. She is the daughter of George and Renee Martin of Greenville.

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