Dance camp in Costa Rica precedes first ECU semester

Incoming ECU freshman Kristyn Tingelstad poses with a student in a dance camp created for children in Costa Rica. (Contributed photos)

Incoming ECU freshman Kristyn Tingelstad poses with a student in a dance camp created for children in Costa Rica. (Contributed photos)

Incoming freshmen Lauren Pavone and Kristyn Tingelstad, both from the Raleigh area, are coming to campus following a cultural exchange trip to Costa Rica organized by dance instructor Marilyn Chappel, a 1990 ECU graduate.

They were among five students in Chappell’s Holly Springs School of Dance who traveled to the village of Carrillos in early June. The students created a dance camp for local children and shared folk dances for audiences who had never seen a live performance, according to Chappel. The camp ran for nine days.

Pavone and Tingelstad also served meals to children and helped create a vegetable garden at a local church.

Incoming ECU freshman Lauren Pavone joined in a cultural exchange program in Costa Rica.

Incoming ECU freshman Lauren Pavone joined in a cultural exchange program in Costa Rica.


Health and Human Performance celebrates achievers

Celebrating with Health and Human Performance Dean Glen Gilbert is Samantha Long, left, and Eliza Monroe.

Celebrating with Health and Human Performance Dean Glen Gilbert is Samantha Long, left, and Eliza Monroe.

Students, family members, and faculty gathered at the fourth annual ECU College of Health and Human Performance Excels event on Feb. 1 at Club Level, Dowdy Ficklen Stadium.

This event recognized freshmen and transfer students with a GPA of 3.0 and above.  Students received a certificate signed by the Chancellor and a HHP tee shirt. A total of 255 HHP students were identified: 12 on the chancellor’s list, 106 on the dean’s list and137 on honor roll.

Provost Sheerer commended students on their success and encouraged them to continue.  “We are proud of your accomplishments as freshmen and want to see you at ECU as a sophomore,” she said.

Summer Long of Wilmington is an exercise physiology major.  “Being recognized for my hard work is encouraging,” she said.

The crowd of nearly 300 received a warm welcome from Dr. Glen Gilbert, dean of the College of Health and Human Performance.

Guest speaker Whitney McFarland

Guest speaker Whitney McFarland

Eliza Monroe, public health studies major, of Raleigh said the event was a good networking opportunity.  “It was also educational for me,” she said.  “I learned about HHP organizations that I did not know existed,” she continued.

Whitney McFarland, of Fairmont was the guest speaker.  McFarland graduated from ECU in 2009 with a bachelor of science in health education and promotion and in 2012 with a master of arts in health education.

McFarland is a public health educator  at the Robeson County Department of Public Health. In her spare time she enjoys competing in pageants and has held several titles including Miss Fairmont, Ambassador titles, and Miss Lumbee 2011-2012.



ECU professor edits book on sexual minority prejudice in sports


East Carolina University kinesiology professor Dr. Melanie Sartore-Baldwin edited and authored two chapters in “Sexual Minorities in Sports: Prejudice at Play,” available at



Sartore-Baldwin wrote the chapters “Gender, Sexuality and Prejudice in Sport” and “What’s Next?” in the book, which addresses what it means to be a sexual minority in the arena of competitive sports.

Sartore-Baldwin earned a bachelor’s degree in physical education/exercise science from Western Illinois University in 2000.  She received a dual master’s degree from Indiana University in 2003 and a doctorate from Texas A&M University in 2007.


FAFSA Day to provide free assistance on federal student aid application

 College students and their parents may find assistance completing the FAFSA (Free Application for Federal Student Aid) forms during FAFSA Day from 9 a.m. to noon on Feb. 23 at Pitt Community College in Greenville.

Register for the event at (select the FAFSA Day link). Registration by Feb. 18 is recommended but not required.

The free event is open to all students who plan to attend college in the 2013-14 academic year. Participants should prepare by completing the following:

  • Bring 2012 federal 1040 tax forms for student and parent(s). If 2012 taxes are incomplete when the FAFSA is filled out and the numbers later change, participants may submit corrections using the IRS Data Retrieval Tool.
  • Each student and one parent should obtain a personal identification number from the U.S. Department of Education. The pin can be obtained at

FAFSA Day is co-sponsored by East Carolina University, Pitt Community College, the College Foundation of North Carolina, the State Employees’ Credit Union and the North Carolina Association of Student Financial Aid Administrators.

For additional information, visit or contact ECU Financial Services at 252-328-6610.



Grant to help ECU recruit, retain 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


Reward announced for Dowdy-Ficklen vandalism information

ECU Police announced today that Pitt-Greenville Crimestoppers is offering up to $5,000 in reward funds for information leading to an arrest of two suspects who broke into and damaged Dowdy-Ficklen Stadium on Oct. 21.

Lt. Chris Sutton announced the Crimestoppers reward at a media briefing releasing photos taken from stadium surveillance video during the vandalism that occurred between 3 a.m. and 6:20 a.m. Oct. 21.

Approximately $35,000 in damage was done by three suspects.

Persons with information about the identity of the two individuals shown with former ECU student William J. Banks on the video should call Crimestoppers at 758-7777. Individuals are not asked for their names when reporting  information; they are identified through a code system. If the information leads to an arrest, the person could receive up to $5,000 in reward money.


ECU poli sci major serves as DNC delegate

ECU junior Uriah Ward attended the Democratic National Convention in Charlotte as the youngest delegate from North Carolina’s 3rd District.

Ward is working toward a bachelor’s in political science at ECU, where he also serves as president of the College Democrats. He expected to be joined by several other ECU College Democrats to hear President Barack Obama accept the Democratic Party nomination.


ECU personal finance instructors inspire students to save $100,000

ECU College of Business professors, left to right, Bill Pratt, Len Rhodes and Mark Weitzel taught students about saving money during a personal finance class at East Carolina University. (Photo by Cliff Hollis)


Three personal finance instructors in the East Carolina University College of Business challenged their students to save $50,000 this past semester by taking tips and ideas from class to change their spending behaviors. Together the 500 students saved more than $130,000.

“We were hoping to help our students save up to $50,000 for the year, averaging to $100 per student,” said Bill Pratt, one of the instructors. “I couldn’t help but smile as I tallied the amount of savings.”

The challenge was simple: students were asked to submit any changes in their behavior that resulted in spending less and saving more  ̶  even securing a paid internship or part-time job counted. The submission did not count as part of their course grade; instead student names were entered into a drawing for several $50 gift cards.

“We begin the semester by discussing jobs, careers and the importance of internships. From there we move into basic financial topics such as how to create a college budget, how to pay for college, how to save on the cost of a car, how to buy insurance and many other personal finance topics,” said Mark Weitzel, who created the course more than 10 years ago.

“We wanted a fun way to demonstrate to our students that making good financial decisions as a result of what they learn in class is easy and will make a real difference in their lives.”

The savings ranged from reducing the number of times students dine out or buy gourmet coffee to saving thousands of dollars on the purchase of a car. One student saved an average of $100 per month by riding his bike to school. Another student stopped buying a snack before her first class and saved more than $50 each month.

One couple kept heating and cooling costs to a minimum by turning the thermostat low in the winter and high in the summer, bundling up when it was cold and taking advantage of cool mornings in the summer by opening windows. Some students even earned a paid internship or asked for and received a pay raise at their job. One student in particular applied to be a resident advisor on campus and was offered the position, which covers room and board and provides a monthly stipend.

“Our goal is to teach students enough about money so they know the right questions to ask and where to find the answers they need. We want our students to know enough so that no one can take advantage of their financial inexperience,” said Len Rhodes, one of the instructors.

The personal finance class at ECU is a three credit hour elective course that fills to its 500 student capacity each semester. The instructors authored the textbook for the class and all net proceeds from the sale of the book go to financial literacy initiatives on ECU’s campus.

The instructors also recently penned a book called “How to Keep Your Kid from Moving Back Home after College,” which gives parents the tools and knowledge they need to help their children develop good personal financial habits.

For more information about ECU’s financial literacy initiatives or the personal finance course, contact teaching instructor Mark Weitzel at