Category Archives: News

Goodwill & Forsyth Tech Team up to Help Adults Earn a High School Diploma

With the new year just around the corner it is almost time to start making New Year’s resolutions.  For some adults who never graduated from high school, earning a diploma is an important resolution to make. Goodwill Industries of Northwest North Carolina and Forsyth Technical Community College have partnered to establish the Access Center Adult High School (formerly the Excel Center) to make it easier and more convenient for adults to earn their high school diploma, free of charge. Students can enroll at Forsyth Tech and earn their diploma online through Goodwill’s Access Center.

“Many employers are starting to prefer a diploma over a GED, so having an actual high school diploma opens doors to better job opportunities”, said Andrew Ward, Access Center Career Coach.  “There is always a reason behind an individual not finishing high school. We work with the students to make sure that they have access to the resources they need to succeed.  We provide ‘wrap-around’ services so that students are supported, encouraged, and motivated throughout the process.”

Access Center students receive the following services, free of charge:

Career coaching and personalized support including help with interviewing skills, cover letters and resumes, and image consulting
Access to a computer lab which Forsyth Tech instructors lead each week

Enrollment in a skills training course which gives them additional experience, and, in some cases, leads to a career certification once they’ve graduated.

For more information, contact the Access Center Adult High School at 336/724-3625 ext. 1231 or email award [at]

Forsyth Tech student receives scholarship

Forsyth Tech global logistics student, Dennis Studer, was awarded the William Vaughn Lifetime Achievement Scholarship from the N.C. League of Transportation and Logistics during the organization’s annual fall meeting last week, Forsyth Technical Community College said in a statement.

The scholarship ceremony took place at the N.C. Center for Global Logistics Conference Center in Colfax. Studer received a $1,500 scholarship for an essay he wrote that addressed driver shortages affecting transportation and solutions to help companies and drivers get products to market more efficiently, Forsyth Tech said.

“Dennis’ award speaks volumes for his diligence and the excellence he brings to our program,” said Demetria Ledbetter, program coordinator for Global Logistics, Business Administration and Logistics Management, Import/Export Compliance at Forsyth Tech. “This scholarship will allow Dennis to continue to pursue a career in transportation and logistics, and we are thrilled for him.”

The scholarship is awarded to up to two upperclassman each year who are pursuing a career in logistics who meet eligibility criteria and submit an essay based on a selected topic.

Inside Forsyth Tech’s new $10M facility at Wake Forest Innovation Quarter

After more than a dozen years of planning,Forsyth Technical Community College this month opened its new $10 million facility at the 525@vine former tobacco building at the Wake Forest Innovation Quarter in downtown Winston-Salem.

Gary Green, president of Forsyth Tech, said the college signed a 10-year, $3 million lease with 525@vine’s developer, Wexford Science & Technology, for 24,000 square feet. The space allows the school to train 1,200 students per year and is home to a small business resource center, computer labs, classrooms, meeting space and collaborative work areas.

Forsyth Tech also raised about $7 million in private funds for the facility.

Green said the college has been working on the project since 2001 as part of a larger goal to strengthen relationships with companies it trains employees for, including Caterpillar Inc., Herbalife and Piedmont Propulsion Systems.

For example, the college has a long-standing relationship with Winston-Salem-basedHanesbrands. Over the past few years, the college has trained the company’s management work force as well as its technical work force, Green said.

“We are working at a whole different level than we were 15 or 20 years ago in terms of our relationships with those organizations that run deeper and higher in the sense of working with senior management and corporate management,” Green said.

Green said the 525@vine space provides opportunities to work with businesses in new ways.

“This is now a new starting point for us,” Green said. “The market and the need for work force development and areas like leadership development and organizational development and how the community college can support that is almost limitless in our area.”

Forsyth Tech Opens New Location at 525@vine in Wake Forest Innovation Quarter

Forsyth Tech officially opened its newest location today at 525@vine in Wake Forest Innovation Quarter in downtown Winston-Salem, which is now home to the college’s Business & Industry Services Division.

525@vine, a former tobacco factory that was recently redeveloped and renovated into a mixed-used laboratory and office building, houses Forsyth Tech’s R. J. Reynolds Corporate Training Center, BB&T Biotechnology Program, Wells Fargo Nanotechnology Program, National Center for the Biotechnology Workforce, BioNetwork and Small Business Center.

The opening ceremony featured remarks by college and Innovation Quarter officials followed by media tours of the renovated space.

“We are excited to be expanding our presence into Winston-Salem’s vibrant downtown,” said Forsyth Tech President Dr. Gary Green. “Our location in the Innovation Quarter reflects the vision of the college to bring together services for business and industry under one roof where we can intersect with the business community as our client instead of the individual student.

“Here in the Innovation Quarter, we are at the epicenter of local economic development, making our business services more accessible than ever before, and creating opportunities to build new and even stronger collaborations that support the growing needs of our business community.”

Forsyth Tech’s 24,000 square feet of innovative work space at the Innovation Quarter was funded with $7 million raised through its Momentum Capital Campaign, which came to a conclusion in 2013, and includes lab facilities, computer labs, flexible classroom and meeting room space as well as small and large collaborative work areas.

Forsyth Tech at Innovation Quarter will serve more than 1,200 students each year as well as a growing number of corporate clients and small business owners through the:

  • J. Reynolds Corporate Training Center, which supports the college’s corporate training partnership programs and provides services for Innovation Quarter tenants
  • Small Business Center, which offers workshops, seminars, individual business counseling and a resource library for business owners and entrepreneurs
  • Lab facilities for the college’s Wells Fargo Nanotechnology Program, the only two-year nanotechnology program in the southeast
  • BB&T Biotechnology Program, the largest biotech program of any community college in the state, and
  • Offices for BioNetwork, the statewide biotechnology workforce initiative run by the North Carolina Community College System.

The 525@vine building was constructed in 1926 by the R. J. Reynolds Tobacco Co. and used as a blending and processing plant. In restoring and renovating the 234,000-square foot building, the new owner, Wexford Science & Technology, a BioMed Realty company, employed both state and federal tax credits that are available to qualified developers of income-producing spaces in historic industrial structures.

Forsyth Tech Announces New College Trustees and Foundation Board of Directors for 2014-2015

Forsyth Tech has announced its new College Board of Trustees and Foundation Board of Directors members for the 2014-2015 academic year.

Forsyth Tech College Board of Trustees

Forsyth Tech has appointed two new trustees for the coming year:  A. Edward (Ed) Jones, retired Deputy County Manager for Forsyth County; and John M. Davenport, Jr., President/Owner of Davenport Transportation Consulting. Ann Bennett-Phillips, Vice President Campaign Group, Capital Development Services., Inc. was re-appointed to the board.

Jones and Davenport replace two trustees who retired following a long tenure of service on the board: Gordon Hughes, who served the college from 1990-2014, and Dewitt Rhoades, who served on the board from 1976-2014.

Edwin (Ed) Welch, Jr., President of I. L. Long Construction remains Chair and R. Alan Proctor, Senior Vice President, Wells Fargo, continues as Vice Chair.

Forsyth Tech Foundation Board of Directors

The Forsyth Tech Foundation has announced the following six new board members for the coming year: Martha Logemann, Certified Public Accountant, Owner, Logemann & Co., PA; Curtis Leonard, Leonard Ryden Burr Real Estate; L. Duane Davis, Sr. Vice President & Financial Advisor, First Tennessee Bank; Joanne C. Ruhland, Vice President, Government Relations, Wake Forest Baptist Medical Center; Sean M. Sanz, Chief Operating Officer, Novant Health/Forsyth Medical Center; and Andrea D. Kepple, retired educator and community volunteer.

The Foundation’s board Chair is Jimmy Flythe, Director of Government Relations and Community Relations, West Region, Duke Energy; the Vice Chair is Nancy Hawley, Vice President Manufacturing, R. J. Reynolds Tobacco Company; Member-at-Large is Kim Stogner, Attorney at Law, Womble Carlyle Sandridge & Rice, LLP; and the Immediate Past Chair is C. Doug Cross, Vice President of Operations, Atrium Corporation.

Local colleges participate in initiative to prevent sexual violence on campus

Local colleges and universities are participating in a national campaign to prevent sexual assaults on their campuses, an effort that has taken on a renewed urgency in the wake of a disappearance of a University of Virginia student.

Jesse Leroy Matthew Jr., 32, was arrested last week and charged with abduction with intent to defile Hannah Graham. Graham, 18, disappeared three weeks ago after a night out with friends.

Although the exact circumstances behind Graham’s disappearance remain a mystery, Cortney Graham, a senior at Winston-Salem State University and no relation, said she recently learned some safety tips to protect herself.

“Don’t mix your liquor and your loving because you cannot legally give your consent,” Graham said. “Don’t walk alone when it’s dark. Use common sense.”

President Barack Obama and Vice President Joe Biden launched the initiative called “It’s On Us,” on Sept. 19 in the White House. Student leaders from nearly 200 U.S. colleges and universities have agreed to participate in the campaign.

Campus officials throughout Winston-Salem have posted fliers in buildings and dormitories informing students and employees that Title IX prohibits sexual harassment and sexual violence on campuses. The schools also provide brochures with information to help protect their students and employees.

The National Institute of Justice found that about one in five women is sexually assaulted while they attend college. In 2009, college campuses reported nearly 3,300 sex offenses, according to the U.S. Department of Education.

“Parents can do everything they can to support their kids’ dreams of getting a good education,” Obama said in a White House speech. “When they finally make it onto campus, only to be assaulted, that’s not just a nightmare for them and their families; it’s not just an affront to everything they’ve worked so hard to achieve — it is an affront to our basic humanity.”

Title IX of the federal Education Amendments of 1972 requires colleges and universities nationwide to report the crimes that happen each year on their campuses to the Education Department.

UNC Chapel Hill and Guilford College are among 79 colleges and universities nationwide that are under investigation for Title IX violations related to sexual assault.

The statistics for local schools are much less grim.

According to the latest available figures, Wake Forest University reported 16 sex offenses from 2010 to 2012.

Penny Rue, WFU’s vice president for campus life, said that some students don’t report being sexually assaulted.

“There are many more students who would seek confidential counseling,” Rue said.

Sara Hendricks, a WFU senior from Vienna, Va., acknowledged the sexual assaults on her campus.

“It’s a national issue,” Hendricks said. “Wake Forest is not exempt from that. For most part, I do feel safe on campus.”

Winston-Salem State University reported seven sex offenses during that period.

Silvia Ramos, WSSU’s Title IX coordinator, declined to comment on WSSU’s numbers. She said that the university has taken several steps to protect its students.

The UNC School of the Arts and Salem Academy and College each reported two sex offenses from 2010 to 2012, according to the statistics. Forsyth Technical Community College reported no sex offenses during that period.

“Salem is firmly committed to providing individuals, who study, live and work on the campus with an environment that is free from sexual harassment and violence,” Anna Gallimore, Salem’s Title IX coordinator, wrote in an email.

James Lucas, UNCSA’s Title IX coordinator, said that the students’ safety is critical.

“We feel like we are accountable to what happens to our kids,” Lucas said. “We take it very seriously.”

Hendricks and female students at WSSU, UNCSA and Forsyth Tech say they always carry their cell phones with them while they attend their classes and other activities on campus.

Hendricks said she is involved with the student group PREPARE (Policy Group on Rape Education, Prevention and Response). The organization helps educate the Wake Forest community about rape and sexual assault and provide support for students who are victims of those crimes, according to its website.

Brandon Bowden, a WSSU senior from Albemarle, said he knows many WSSU female students who carry Mace or pepper spray on their key rings. Bowden said that he and other male students should escort female students safely to their destinations at night.

“We just can’t be bystanders,” Bowden said.

Gov. Pat McCrory Recognizes Forsyth Tech on Manufacturing Day

North Carolina Governor Pat McCrory visited Triumph Actuation in Clemmons Friday afternoon as part of Manufacturing Day activities and credited Forsyth Tech’s Customized Job Training Programs as models for the development of a skilled manufacturing workforce. Forsyth Tech President Dr. Gary Green and Dean of Business & Industry Services, Jennifer Coulombe, were invited to attend the event.

During his remarks, Gov. McCrory indicated Forsyth Tech was one of the top community colleges in the state, particularly around manufacturing.

Forsyth Tech has had a long-term training relationship with Triumph dating back to 2006 when the college first began providing the hydraulic manufacturer with Customized Training Programs.

Forsyth Tech has been a leader in the development of advanced manufacturing training and education programs to meet the growing demands of today’s modern manufacturing facilities. Since 2010, the college has invested more than $3 million in new equipment to keep pace with the needs of local and regional manufacturers.

Small Business Center at Forsyth Tech Assisting Local Entrepreneurs

Starting and operating a small business is hard work. Did you know that there is a local resource that exists with the primary purpose of helping you achieve business success? Furthermore, this organization provides FREE services. I am pleased to introduce you to the Small Business Center at Forsyth Tech. We provide:

  •  Confidential one-on-one business counseling
  •  Small business seminars and roundtables
  •  Resource center for research and networking

The objective of the Small Business Center Network is to help small businesses succeed by providing high quality, readily accessible assistance to prospective and existing business owners. Many of people that you may know have taken advantage of our services. We hope that you will decide to do so as well.

The Forsyth Tech Small Business Center offers new, interesting, and helpful seminar topics each semester. Seminars for the Fall 2014 semester include:

  • Cloud Based Small Business Tools
  • Marketing For Artists and Crafters
  • Enhancing Business Success
  • Keeping Small Business Records and Paying Your Taxes
  • Digital Social Media
  • Developing A Small Business Marketing Plan
  • Website Building 101 for Small Businesses
  • 10 Biggest Mistakes That Entrepreneurs Make and How To Avoid Them

The Small Business Center is designed to address the needs of current and prospective small business owners. We want to keep giving you reasons to return to the Small Business Center to take our seminars to help ensure your small business’ success. More than 100 clients participate in our seminars and roundtables each month. We also provide business counseling to about 20 clients each month. Don’t hesitate to let us know how we can serve you.

Our motto is “Increasing Business Success” which describes our commitment to our clients. The assistance that we provide to our clients may include business plan development, marketing strategy, operations analysis, strategic planning, expense management, cost analysis, and much more.

We encourage every business owner to commit to ongoing development of their entrepreneurship skills. In Forsyth County, the Small Business Center is located at our new home in Innovation Quarter at 525 Vine Street in Winston-Salem. In Stokes County, the Small Business Center is located on 904 North Main Street in Walnut Cove. Many of our seminars are provided through partnerships with the local Chambers of Commerce, the Enterprise Center at Winston Salem State University, and the Urban League Quality of Life Institute. We also partner with the NC Department of Revenue, NC Rural Center, and the US Small Business Administration.

The Small Business Center encourages suggestions on business topics of interest. Visit them HERE or you can visit us in person at Innovation Quarter. Feel free to contact us at SBC [at] forsythtech [.] edu or by calling 336/757-3810.

You can see a video about the program HERE.

Forsyth and Stokes County Partners Prepare to Help Address North Carolina Skills Gap

Workforce Teams Seeking Businesses to Visit as Part of
Statewide “1,000 in 100” Initiative

(Winston-Salem) – Workforce development partners from Forsyth and Stokes County are looking for businesses to visit as part of the “1,000 in 100” initiative, a statewide effort to match the needs of local companies with skilled employees.

Organized by NCWorks, teams from each of the state’s 100 counties will identify at least 10 businesses to visit by the end of the year. The visits will give business leaders a chance to talk about their employment needs as well as provide education and workforce development professionals the opportunity to hear and respond to those needs collaboratively.

Workforce development professionals hope to use information gathered during the meetings to address the “skills gap” in North Carolina. Employers tell local and state leaders they cannot find qualified employees for the jobs they have available, an apparent disconnect that workforce professionals are working on around the country.

“This is a great opportunity to collectively uncover the workforce needs of the state,” says Alan Murdock, vice president of Forsyth Tech’s Economic and Workforce Development division.
“Equally important is the ability to uncover the workforce needs of our immediate area, which may not be the same as the state overall.”

Locally, members of the Northwest Piedmont Workforce Board and Forsyth Technical Community College are working together to plan visits with businesses in Forsyth and Stokes County.

“The “1,000 in 100” initiative will allow us an opportunity to listen to the needs of business and industry, carefully review their concerns and respond based on our network of partners and services in the most effective and efficient manner,” says Althea Hairston, director of the Northwest Piedmont Workforce Board. “I feel sure this initiative will become a new way of doing business. We all want employers to have confidence in North Carolina’s workforce system and for employers to look to the network of workforce partners as strong collaborators in meeting their business needs.”

Information collected during the meetings along with other data could inform potential policy or changes in how North Carolina delivers workforce services in preparation for the 2015 legislative session. Gov. Pat McCrory introduced NCWorks in April to better align state agencies—including N.C. Department of Commerce, N.C. Community College system and N.C. Department of Public Instruction—with the needs of employers.

For more information, visit