Forsyth Tech Fields Team in Athena’s Run to Honor College’s Former Dean of Health Technologies

More than 25 people associated with Forsyth Technical Community College will participate in Athena’s Run for Gynecological Cancers on Saturday, September 10 at Tanglewood Park staring at 8:30 am. Forsyth Tech’s team, Bonnie’s Band, is running in honor of Dr. Bonnie Pope, the college’s former dean of Health Technologies, who passed away from ovarian cancer in May. Pope’s husband, Randy, will be in attendance.

Pope was beloved by colleagues as well as students and left a great impression on those whose lives she touched. In a testament to Pope’s legacy, generous contributions from her friends, family and the community helped the college raise nearly $5,000 for Bonnie’s Band, surpassing the donation goal of $2,000.

Pope began her career as a nurse educator at Forsyth Tech in 1988, teaching in the Associate Degree and Practical Nursing programs. She left the college but returned in January 2005 as director of nursing programs. Pope was named dean of the Health Technologies in August 2011, a position she held until her retirement January 1, 2016.

Under Pope’s leadership, Forsyth Tech developed the most comprehensive—and effective—array of nursing and allied health programs of any community college in the 12-county region. Passing rates of 100% on national certification examinations by program graduates are not uncommon. The North Carolina Community College System recognized the Health Technologies Division for a combined passing rate of 99.6% in 2013-2014 on licensure and certification examinations taken by graduates across its 16 programs.

Pope was also instrumental in nurturing partnerships with medical centers, outpatient facilities and other agencies across the region and state that provide clinical settings for students to access current healthcare research and best practices.

Athena’s Run was founded in 2010 in an effort to promote education and advocacy for gynecological cancers in the Piedmont Triad Region. Over the past five years, Athena’s Run has raised more than $400,000 that is being used locally and nationally to support education and advocacy for gynecologic cancers.

Bonnie Pope

Caption: Forsyth Tech’s team, Bonnie’s Band, is participating in Athena’s Run on Saturday, September 10, to honor the memory of the college’s former dean of Health Technologies, Dr. Bonnie Pope.

Bonnie's Band logo t-shirt

Caption: Support for Bonnie’s Band is a Forsyth Tech family affair. Lee Smith, instructor in the Graphic Arts Department at Forsyth Tech designed the Bonnie’s Band t-shirt logo. Lee’s mom, Teresa Smith, is a retired Nuclear Medicine clinical coordinator at Forsyth Tech and was a friend and colleague of Bonnie’s. Lee knew Bonnie most of his life.