Category Archives: News

Forsyth Tech celebrates success of its Early College of Forsyth

Forsyth Technical Community College celebrated Thursday Newsweek magazine naming its Early College of Forsyth as one of its top 500 high schools in the United States for the second consecutive year.

Forsyth Tech held a ceremony in the Dewitt Conference Center on its Silas Creek Parkway campus.

The Early College of Forsyth was listed in the top 5 percent in the magazine’s rankings this year, said Martha Murphy, a college spokeswoman. It was listed in the top 3 percent in the rankings last year.

Newsweek released its 2015 High School Rankings in August. The magazine analyzed more than 16,000 high schools, and ranked the Early College 103rd, Forsyth Tech said in a statement.

Gary Green, president of Forsyth Tech, said during the ceremony that Newsweek’s recognition of the Early College was a solid accomplishment.

“(The) Early College of Forsyth is one of the best-kept secrets of education in our community,” Green said.

Frances Cook, the principal of the Early College, said the ranking reflects Forsyth Tech’s efforts to develop the Early College into one of the top high schools in the country.

“But more than a ranking, the story of Early College of Forsyth is about the personalization of the relationships between our students and faculty and about being a family,” Cook said.

Forsyth Tech Hosts Venture Innovation Café™, Thursday, Sept. 17, 2- 8 pm

Event Sponsored by Wells Fargo, Focused on Entrepreneurship Support

Forsyth Tech @ Innovation Quarter is hosting a first-ever Venture Innovation Café on Thursday, September 17, from 2 – 8 pm at 525 @ Vine Street in Winston-Salem’s Innovation Quarter. Wells Fargo is the event sponsor.

Focused on developing and supporting entrepreneurship in Forsyth County, the “Mixer” is designed to match new and established entrepreneurs with like-minded local partners and resources to accelerate momentum in Innovation Quarter and beyond by aligning the people, talent and energy in the evolving local innovation community.

“We are excited by this extraordinary opportunity to bring together for the first time a newly formed group we’re calling the Entrepreneurial Ecosystem Partners of Forsyth County,” says Allan Younger, director of Forsyth Tech’s Small Business Center. “This group offers an additional pool of resources to small business owners and start-up entrepreneurial enterprises that supplement the services we are already providing through the Small Business Center, such as one-on-one counseling and business advice, seminars, roundtables, and computer training. All of these services are designed to ensure the success of entrepreneurial development in our community.”

The Café features Social Media Strategies and IRS workshops for entrepreneurs and a Small Business Center Success Roundtable See full schedule below). In addition, participants will have numerous opportunities to meet and interact with the Entrepreneurial Ecosystem  Partners of Forsyth County, including the Winston-Salem  Chamber of Commerce, Kernersville Chamber of Commerce, Lewisville Chamber of Commerce, Flywheel, Winston-Salem Mixxer, Forsyth County Public Library, Center for Creative Economy, Center for Design Innovation, VentuRealization Community, The Enterprise Center, Salem College, Wake Forest University School of Business, sbtdc, Piedmont Angel Network and representatives from the City of Winston-Salem.

The event is free and open to the public. Preregistration is required by emailing , calling 336-757-3802 or registering online at:

Following is the full list of events taking place during the Venture Innovation Café™:

  • 10:30 am-11:30 am SBC Success Series RoundTable: Your Business Community (SBC)
  • 11:30 am-2:00 pm Lunch on Your Own
  • 2:00-3:00 Meet the Entrepreneurial Ecosystem Partners (Flywheel)
  • 3:00-4:00 Social Media Strategies: What is best for my Business? (SBC Lab 2)
  • 3:00-4:00 Entrepreneurship is a Team Sport (Flywheel IQ Court)
  • 3:00-4:00 The Best Deal in Town for Startup and Success (SBC Classrooms)
  • 3:00-6:00 Information Tables: Ecosystem Partners (525 @ Vine Courtyard)
  • 4:00-5:00 Getting Investor Ready (Flywheel IQ Court)
  • 4:00-5:00 How the Chamber Helps Small Business (Forsyth Tech SBC #2440)
  • 4:00-5:00 How to Find and Connect with the Resources You Need
    (SourceLink & SWERVE) (Forsyth Tech SBC Classrooms)
  • 5:00-6:00 Innovation Clinic (Forsyth Tech SBC Classrooms)
  • 5:00-5:30 How to Start a Startup (Flywheel IQ Court)
  • 5:30-6:00 VentuRealization Workshop Series (Flywheel IQ Court)
  • 6:00-7:00 Meet the Entrepreneurial Ecosystem Partners (Flywheel)
  • 6:00-8:00 IRS Presentation Independent Contractor vs. Employee (SBC)

Added Bonus:

  • 6:30-9:30 pm “Sunset Thursdays” Free Community Concert in Bailey Park presented by Flow Honda. Food and beverages available for purchase.

Forsyth Tech Closed 8/11/15

Due to our Annual Forsyth Tech Gathering, we will be closed on Tuesday, August 11.

We apologize for any inconvenience.

We will be open 8am-6:30pm on Wednesday, August 12 and Thursday, August 13 for Late Registration!

Forsyth Tech Names Center for Rhoades

Forsyth Technical Community College’s newly renovated conference room has a new name – The Dewitt E. Rhoades Conference Center, named for a longtime member of the college’s board of trustees.

Gary Green, Forsyth Tech’s president, made the announcement during the college’s grand opening ceremony Monday for newly renovated Oak Grove Center on the college’s main campus.

About 150 people attended the event.

The 856-seat conference room is on the second floor of the Oak Grove Center.

Former Gov. Jim Holshouser appointed Rhoades to Forsyth Tech’s board in 1976. Rhoades, who retired from the board in 2014, is the longest serving trustee in the college’s 55-year history, Green said.

Green met Rhoades in 2001, when he became president of Forsyth Tech, Green said.

“Dewitt has been there for 38 years on the behalf of our students,” Green said.

Rhoades told the audience that he is proud of helping Forsyth Tech expand to Kernersville and King.

“Those are things that I always felt good about,” Rhoades said.

Rhoades is the retired owner and president of DERA Inc. of Winston-Salem, an office equipment company. He served as the chairman and vice chairman of the trustees’ board during his tenure. Rhoades also served as a trustee for the N.C. Association of Community Colleges.

In 1981, President Ronald Reagan appointed Rhoades to the National Small Business Advisory Council.

During the ceremony, state Rep. Donny Lambeth, a former Forsyth Tech trustee, presented Rhoades with the N.C. Order of the Long Leaf Pine Award, one of the state’s highest honors.

“He’s a true Southern gentleman,” Lambeth said of Rhoades.

A.L. “Buddy” Collins, a friend of Rhoades and a member of the State Board of Education, said that Rhoades is dedicated to Forsyth Tech.

“Dewitt, if there is a flower in this community, it is right here,” Collins said of the college.

Forsyth Tech used $24 million from the 2008 local bond referendum to renovate the Oak Grove Center, which was once the Winston-Salem/Forsyth County Schools’ Career Center, said Martha Murphy, a college spokeswoman.

The school system transferred ownership of the building to the college when the system moved into its administrative offices to Corporate Square Drive in the city’s northern section.

During the ceremony, Green told the audience about the new classrooms and labs in the Oak Grove Center. On the second floor, college has opened a science-skills learning lab and an early childhood lab school, Green said.

On the first floor, the college has two graphic-arts labs with computers, a classroom and lab for its horticulture technology program, as well as labs for its programs in electrical work, heating, ventilation and air conditioning (HVAC), plumbing and carpentry.

The college also has a simulated manufacturing area to train students to work at the Caterpillar plant in Winston-Salem, Green said.

The students are taking advantage of the new facilities, said Davetta Cook, a Forsyth Tech student. Cook told the audience that she plans to graduate in May 2016 with an associate degree in horticulture technology.

“I appreciate everything that the school has done for me,” Cook said.


Forsyth Tech’s Allan Younger Wins Small Business Advocate Award from Kernersville Chamber of Commerce

Allan Younger, director of the Small Business Center at Forsyth Tech, received the Small Business Advocate of the Year Award from the Kernersville Chamber of Commerce. Younger was recognized during the Chamber’s 2015 Small Business Awards Breakfast held at Fountain of Life Lutheran Church on May 21.

The Small Business Advocate of the Year Award is presented to an individual who assists small business or supports the development of entrepreneurship and volunteers time to help small business grow. The recipient is also someone who promotes small business for purposes of supporting economic development within the community and advocates for small business by writing and speaking about issues of importance to small business.

Younger has worked for Forsyth Tech since 2010. He is also president of GRACE Consulting, which specializes in business effectiveness, professional and leadership development, and community relations. In addition, he is a contributing writer on small business topics for Black Business Ink and Camel City Dispatch.

The Kernersville Chamber of Commerce has been hosting the Small Business Awards Ceremonies since 1987.

Alan Younger

Allan Younger, director of Forsyth Tech’s Small Business Center, is the 2015 recipient of the Small Business Advocate of the Year Award from the Kernersville Chamber of Commerce.

Wake Forest Baptist Physician, Wake Forest Innovations and Forsyth Tech Combine Skills and Expertise to Produce New Medical Training Device

WINSTON-SALEM, N.C. – May 19, 2015 – Postgraduate fellows in maternal-fetal medicine at Wake Forest Baptist Medical Center are now practicing invasive procedures on a training device invented by a Wake Forest Baptist physician and designed and built by Forsyth Technical Community College students in collaboration with Wake Forest Innovations.

While the patent-pending device, an ultrasound-guided invasive procedure trainer, was conceived for use in maternal-fetal medicine – the subspecialty of obstetrics and gynecology devoted to assessing and managing high-risk pregnancies – it has adjustable features that make it suitable for training in other fields that employ ultrasound-guided procedures.

“The device provides a risk-free way to develop the hand-eye coordination and other skills needed to perform amniocentesis and other delicate procedures on a patient,” said the trainer’s inventor, Joshua Nitsche, M.D., Ph.D., assistant professor of maternal-fetal medicine at Wake Forest Baptist. “Everybody has to do something for the first time, but this can help clinicians gain competence, experience and confidence before that first time.”

Nitsche was dissatisfied with the available invasive-procedure training devices, which simulate specific anatomic structures and procedures, so he decided to make one with wider utility. He did, using materials from a home improvement store, then took his creation to Wake Forest Innovations, the Medical Center’s commercialization arm. There, Kenneth Russell, director of product innovation services, and Mohammad Albanna, an innovation associate, recognized its potential as a commercial product and the need for a prototype more sophisticated than Nitsche’s homemade model.

As Wake Forest Innovations doesn’t have production facilities, Russell and Albanna contacted Todd Bishop, coordinator of the mechanical engineering technology program at Forsyth Tech, and David Dinkins, an instructor in the program. They agreed to take on the project for two classes.

“We like to have students work on as many ‘real-world’ projects as possible and this seemed like a great opportunity,” Dinkins said.

Starting in the fall, seven Forsyth Tech students – three in mechanical engineering technology, four in computer-integrated machining – worked on the design, composition and construction of the device in consultation with Nitsche, Russell and Albanna. By February, they had produced three professional-quality ultrasound-guided invasive procedure trainers.

Nitsche took the Forsyth Tech-made prototypes to the annual meeting of the Society of Maternal-Fetal Medicine, where they received favorable reviews, and began using them in his teaching sessions with postgraduate fellows.

The training device consists of a plastic basin with a side valve, a removable cover of either silicone or ballistic gelatin (to simulate human skin), an aluminum ring, steel draw latches and targeting constructs of various sizes and shapes with anchoring magnets.

Here’s how the device is used: A targeting construct is placed at the bottom of the basin then the basin is filled with water. The soft cover is placed over the basin, held in place by the aluminum ring and secured by the steel latches. More water is added to the basin through the valve until the cover develops a curvature (to simulate an abdomen). After sonographic gel is applied, the user places an ultrasound transducer on the cover with one hand and inserts a needle with the other. Using the ultrasound image as a guide, he or she attempts to direct the needle to the targets.

The changeable, moveable targets are what differentiate this device from other trainers.

“It can be made more or less challenging, which is a rare feature in medical simulators,” Nitsche said. “And it can mimic different patient situations for different procedures.”

The ultrasound needle guide trainer is currently available for licensing through Wake Forest Innovations.

“Working with Wake Forest Innovations and seeing how something goes from an idea to a real product was interesting and informative,” Nitsche said. “And working with the students and instructors at Forsyth Tech – exchanging ideas, learning about materials and so on – was great.”

“This was a valuable educational experience for the students,” Dinkins said. “By interacting with professionals to develop an actual product they learned lessons beyond what they would normally get in the classroom. We anticipate this will be a jumping-off point for more collaboration with Wake Forest Innovations.”

Stokes Early College graduates 29

Stokes Early College kicked off graduation season Thursday morning at King Central Park when 29 seniors received their diplomas alongside family and friends.

“We have graduates who have experienced loss of loved ones, physical and emotional struggles and the added responsibility of being the bread winner for their family,” said Stokes Early College principal Misti Holloway. “Through it all the class of 2015 has not lacked for perseverance.”

That perseverance has paid off. The graduates have earned 1.9 million dollars in scholarship money and Holloway believes the students will hit the two million mark by the end of the school year.

“They are the smallest graduating class in Stokes County and have been awarded the most scholarship money so far. They’re record breakers and to me that’s what defines them,” Holloway said.

Assistant superintendent Tony George challenged the young adults to focus on the day at hand.

“Yesterday means the past, today means right now, and tomorrow means the future. Graduates, I’m going to give you a little heads up. We can’t worry about yesterday because it’s already gone and we can’t worry about tomorrow because we’re not promised tomorrow. Today is the most important day of your life. Write it down, right here at the park in King. You’re getting ready to get a Stokes County diploma which is a ticket to go out in the world and be successful. Go be somebody.”

Senior Katie Hyatt is a recipient of the prestigious Salem Sister Scholarship and is attending Salem College to pursue a double major in Math and Science this fall. On Thursday she addressed her peers and said, “I never thought I would make it to this moment and many of you may be feeling the same way. Many of us have dreamed of this moment and now we’ve finally made it.”

Hyatt praised the teachers at the school and said they are anything but typical.

“In our team building exercises we did at Camp Hanes before our freshmen year began, our teachers actually did the exercises with us. We zip lined together and the teachers made us feel part of something,” she said. “Now that I’m heading off to college I will be taking memories of the past four years and everything I’ve learned with me. Just as we stepped off that wooden ledge trusting the zip lines with our lives is probably identical to the fear we feel today, the fear of the unknown. This fear may never go away because the future is unknown but for many of us what we’ve built in us over the years has built the strength and ability to succeed.”

Miranda Nicholson, who holds the highest grade point average at Stokes Early College and has been accepted to the University of North Carolina at Wilmington with a Chancellor’s Academic Merit Scholarship also thanked the teachers for their instrumental role over the past four years.

Holloway concluded with telling the 2015 class each one of them was created with natural gifts and special talents.

“Use them. You have come a long way but not half as far as you will go.”

Story by Amanda Dodson