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Wednesday, April 25, 2007

UNCP’s trustees observe moment of silence for Virginia Tech tragedy

A moment of silence was observed for the victims of the Virginia Tech shootings at the April 19 meeting of UNC Pembroke’s Board of Trustees.

Outgoing trustees honored – From left: Chair Sybil Bullard with outgoing members Marvin Jacobs, Carl Meares Jr. and Sherry Prince

Outgoing trustees honored – From left: Chair Sybil Bullard with outgoing members Marvin Jacobs, Carl Meares Jr. and Sherry Prince

It was one of several memorials on campus as colleges and universities across the nation cope with the tragedy. It was an assault on all campuses, Chancellor Allen C. Meadors said.

“There are 33 families that will never be the same,” Chancellor Meadors said. “This has been a trying week for America, but for the nation’s colleges and universities in particular, it is a reminder of the tremendous responsibility we have for the nation’s young men and women.”

A candlelight vigil, a session with campus counselors and minister, an online seminar ("The Compassionate Response: Helping Students After a National Tragedy”) and the creation of a “sympathy book” were part of UNCP’s response, said Dr. Diane Jones, vice chancellor for the Office of Student Affairs.

“We are giving an outlet for students and others to talk about it,” Dr. Jones said. “We are also assuring students of our safety practices. This tragedy has affected every university across the nation.”


The Board of Trustees voted to study the creation of a Board of Visitors. UNCP may have a “board of visitors” as early as next year, Chancellor Meadors said.

Many universities have similar bodies that act as ambassadors for the institution, Chancellor Meadors said.

“We want to reach out to send UNCP’s message,” he said. “The members of a board of visitors could be from out-of-state or outside our region.

“The idea is to reach out and engage members of the larger UNCP community in University activities,” Chancellor Meadors said.

A board of visitors may also be a training ground for future trustees, Alumni Association officers and members of other boards, he said.

For instance, North Carolina State University’s Board of Visitors has 30 members. Its stated mission is to advise “the Chancellor, and through the Chancellor, the Board of Trustees.”

The NCSU Board of Visitors advocates for the university in achieving its educational purposes and accomplishments; and brings visibility and contacts to the campus from distant areas, according to NCSU’s Web site.


  • In other action, the board honored outgoing members with plaques. They are Carl Meares Jr. of Fair Bluff, N.C., Sherry Prince of Tabor City, N.C. and Marvin Jacobs of Raeford, N.C., the Student Government Association representative.
  • Greek life on campus is a growing enterprise, Dr. Jones reported. From 143 members of fraternities and sororities in 2006, there are more than 300 as the spring semester ends. Three new fraternities and two sororities were launched during 2006-07.
  • The board approved granting degrees to 530 candidates at the May 5 commencement. Of those, 92 students will receive graduate degrees.
  • Fund raising passed the $3 million mark in March, reported Sandy Waterkotte, vice chancellor for the Office of Advancement.
  • A new mission and vision statement for the University was also adopted in a unanimous vote of the Board of Trustees.

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