Study looks at traffic congestion; college updates community on new programs.
By Jonathan McNamara
LOUISBURG — Successful growth can only come by proper planning.
Dr. Stelfanie Williams, president of Vance-Granville Community College (VGCC) joined Shelby Powell, a representative of the North East Area Study (NEAS) on Monday at the Franklin County commissioner’s meeting to address this very subject.
VGCC has an enrollment of almost 6,000 curriculum students and slightly over 10,000 continuing education students.
With 392 associate degree graduates for the 2012-13 school year and 420 students earning a General Education Equivalency (GED) in 2012, community college is a vital resource for Franklin and surrounding counties by helping educate residents and promoting job growth with close to a quarter of the school’s total population residing in Franklin County
In 2013-14, VGCC will establish three new degree programs: Paralegal technology, simulation and gaming (in collaboration with Wake Technical Community College), and gerontology concentration for human services.
“We are always examining our service and job opportunity data and we determined these are areas of growth in our region,” Williams said.
“Vance-Granville institutes three objectives; student transfers, hi-tech emerging jobs and preparation for existing stable professions,” she added.
Another big-time move for the college is the marking of the first community college in N.C. to sign a Registered Nurse to Bachelor of Science degree articulation with North Carolina A&T University.
“What makes this program unique is the fact that a student can do their two-year associate degree for nursing here, then by utilizing technology the same students can stay here and complete a four-year, registered nurse degree,” Williams said.
Williams also noted that all financial and program fiscal audits for the academic year show proper use of all funds .
VGCC also received the Plus 50 Grant, from the American Association of Community Colleges to support services for older adults who attend the school.
Looking to the future, VGCC plans to implement a Campus Police force over the next five years, Williams said.
“We want to be smart and deliberate on planning to ensure county funds are being used wisely over a period of time,” Williams added.
With growth, congestion…
Northeast Area Study (NEAS), gave an update on how the studies have progressed over the last several months.
Highlighting traffic congestion and giving an outlook up to 2040.
The group looks at problem roadways, railroad crossings hot-spot intersections to gain knowledge on how to better plan future development.
One of the main arteries running through the region is N.C. 96, which cuts straight through downtown Youngsville.
According to NEAS, 20 percent of the vehicles traveling through downtown Youngsville are transfer trucks, compared to 11 percent of transfer trucks on Interstate 40 in Wake County.
In addition the NEAS found people are traveling too far to reach their work, go shopping and run errands.
•The Pamlico-Tar River Foundation presented an award to the county for collecting the most trash during the annual spring cleanup competition that includes Granville County, Rocky Mount, Tarboro, Greenville, Washington and Louisburg.
•The vote on a resolution calling for a public hearing request in connection with financing the renovations of the county’s jail and courthouse will be held at the next board meeting.