PTK chapter garners 14 awards at regional conference

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by Sandy Wall

The awards keep coming for Craven Community College‘s chapter of the Phi Theta Kappa (PTK) International Honor Society.

The group brought home an amazing 14 individual and group awards from the recent Carolinas Regional Phi Theta Kappa Convention in Myrtle Beach, S.C.

Students from Craven Community College’s Phi Theta Kappa (PTK) chapter join faculty members and administrators to show off the 14 awards the group brought back from a PTK regional conference in Myrtle Beach, S.C. (Photo by Nancy Childs)

This year’s strong showing comes just a year after the chapter garnered 10 awards at the regional convention.

Chapter leaders say they are proud of the strong performance and of the work that PTK members are doing on campus and in the community.

“Phi Theta Kappa is focused on community involvement and service,” said Marlena Brokob, chapter president. “It shows our college’s commitment to academic success and excellence, both in and out of the classroom.”

Phi Theta Kappa is an international organization that recognizes the academic achievements of students at two-year colleges. To be eligible, a student must complete a minimum of 12 hours of curriculum course work at Craven and earn a grade point average of 3.5 or higher.

Craven’s chapter has been extremely busy in recent years. It has grown its membership and has worked hard to increase its profile on campus and in the community.

The chapter helped to commemorate New Bern‘s 300th anniversary by researching and recording a series of historical “minutes” that were broadcast on Public Radio East and by creating a popular video documentary titled “Voices of New Bern.”

Chapter members have helped out with campus and community volunteer projects, and several members have received individual recognitions in the form of scholarships and other honors.

Seven chapter members joined chapter advisors Kathryn “Kate” Amerson and Pamela Baldwin at this year’s PTK regional conference. The 14 awards earned by the group, known officially as the Alpha Phi Nu chapter, were:

  • Carolinas Superstar Award (for distinguished achievement)
  • Hall of Honor (for former PTK member Jimmy Fulcher Jr.)
  • Hall of Honor (for former PTK member Antonio Bryant)
  • Honors in Action Regional Project Award (regional recognition for the chapter Foreign Language Study)
  • Hand in Hand Regional Service Award (for its community involvement after Hurricane Irene)
  • Carolinas Region Distinguished College Project (for hosting a Scholarship Fair on Nov. 15, 2011, at the New Bern Campus)
  • Horizon Award (for chapter Advisor Kathryn Amerson)
  • Distinguished Chapter Officer (for former PTK President Jimmy Fulcher Jr.)
  • Distinguished Chapter Officer (for former PTK Secretary Antonio Bryant)
  • Distinguished Honors in Action Project (for the “Voices of New Bern” documentary)
  • Distinguished Achievements in Regional Programs of the Two-Year Colleges (for its community service and leadership achievements)
  • Five Star Chapter Development Plan (for reaching and maintaining its status as a Five Star chapter)
  • Distinguished Chapter (for combined scores of the College Project and Honors in Action project)
  • Most Distinguished Chapter in the Carolinas Region, First Runner Up

Brokob said chapter members are staying busy. The group is involved in a number of activities, and there are plans for PTK leaders and members who are traveling to South America in May to create a “Voices of Peru” documentary as the 2012 Honors in Action project.

Brokob said she is happy the chapter has remained strong, even as many of its most active members have moved on to four-year universities or other endeavors.

“In recent years, the chapter has been very active,” she said. “I’m proud that we’ve been able to keep the momentum strong and build on their work.”

Sandy Wall is the public information officer at Craven Community College. He can be reached at walls@cravencc.edu.

Phi Theta Kappa Chapter wins MLKjr Trailblazer Award for “Voices of New Bern” Documentary

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The Craven Community College Alpha Phi Nu chapter of  Phi Theta Kappa was honored during the Martin Luther King, Jr. weekend celebrations.  The chapter was invited to march in the MLKjr Parade on Saturday January 14 and to attend the MLKjr Scholarship and Awards Banquet held at The Flame Restaurant on Sunday January 15, 2012.  During the event, Phi Theta Kappa received the Martin Luther King, Jr. Trailblazer Award.  The award was given for the chapter’s 2011  Honors in Action project, a documentary titled “Voices of New Bern“.

Phi Theta Kappa wins MLKjr Trailblazer Award for "Voices of New Bern". MLKjr Parade photo by Sandy Wall, Craven Community College Public Information Officer

As Phi Theta Kappa students researched significant individuals for New Bern’s 300th Celebration in 2010, many New Bern voices were uncovered.  Abraham Galloway, Sarah Dudley Pettey, and William Henry Singleton, among others, were rediscovered as trailblazers in New Bern.  When the chapter began its research, voices such as Mrs. Blanche Rivers were fading.  Students wanted to capture her voice as well as others and dreamt of creating a documentary titled, “Voices of New Bern”.  Many people around New Bern and the country offered to help.  Students interviewed:  Allene Dudley Bundy, Dr. David Cecelski of Duke University, Dr. Glenda Gilmore of Yale University, Nelson McDaniel, Barbara Rivers Morgan, Mary Peterkin, Mary Randolph, Steve Shaffer and Helen Smaw.  Dr. Bruce Waugh, Valerie Kite, and the Craven Community College administration/faculty/staff willingly assisted with talent, time, space and equipment. Students used the resources of the Kellenberger Room, Godwin Memorial Library, New Bern Historical Society, New Bern Civil War Battlefield, Tryon Palace, the Pepsi Store, and the Fireman’s Museum.  Student researchers and filmmakers were: Samantha Abrante, Pamela Baldwin, Tony Bryant, Caleb Cobb, Karen Crump, Annette Cuthrell, Lori Anne Franklin, Jimmy Fulcher, Jr., Kayla Jones, Tim Kiley, Margaret Lamb, Wade Lamb, Suzanne Lee, Timothy Lee, Joe Nevels, II, Jo Shoemaker, and Shannon Wahl.  The project received grants from the Richard Chapman Cleve Fund, a component fund of the North Carolina Community Foundation and The Walmart Foundation Community Grant awarded by the Walmart Supercenter of New Bern.  Mrs. Blanche Rivers died on December 28, 2010.  “Voices of New Bern” was dedicated to her memory.

Accepting the MLKjr Trailblazer Award for the chapter were:  Jimmy Fulcher, Jr.—Director and past  President; Marlena Brokob—current Chapter President; Chris Howe—Vice-President of Service; Toney Johnson—Vice President of Information; Margaret Lamb—Essayist and Honorary Phi Theta Kappa member; Helen Smaw—Composer and performer of the musical score; Pamela Baldwin—Researcher and chapter Co-Advisor; and Kathryn Amerson—Chapter Faculty Advisor.

The public is invited to the encore presentation of “Voices of New Bern” on March 31 at 1:00 PM in Cullman Hall in the new North Carolina History Center.  Tony Bryant, past chapter Secretary and alumnus, will also premiere two documentaries:  “Baptism by Fire—The Battle for New Berne” and “For Liberty and Union”.  The event is sponsored by the  Family History Society of Eastern North Carolina.  For more information visit the Family History Society of ENC.

Voices of New Bern Premieres on June 23

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Voices of New Bern, a documentary by members of Phi Theta Kappa and students in Humanities 160, will première on Thursday June 23, 2011 at 7:00 p.m.    The event will take place in Orringer Auditorium on the campus of Craven Community College.    This film is supported by the Richard Chapman Cleve Fund, a component fund of the North Carolina Community Foundation, and the Walmart Community Grant.   

Voices of New Bern captures some of the city’s history from the Reconstruction period following the American Civil War to the Great Fire of New Bern in 1922.  Prominent figures such as Abraham Galloway, Emeline Pigott, Sarah Dudley Pettey, Oscar Marks, Bayard Wooten, Caleb Bradham, and Blanche Rivers are discussed.  Interviews with Dr. David Cecelski, Dr. Glenda Gilmore, Mr. Nelson McDaniel, Mrs. Mary Peterkin, Mrs. Mary Randolph, and Mrs. Blanche Rivers were conducted to reveal voices from New Bern’s history.  Music for the piece was composed and performed by Helen Sims Smaw.

The première is open to the public.   A question and answer session will follow.

 

Voices of New Bern (work in progress), a Phi Theta Kappa Film

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New Bern Ghost Walk: Battle of New Bern Civil War Reinactment, Photograph by Tony Bryant

Voices of New Bern will première in Orringer Auditorium on June 23 at 7:00 pm.  We expect the final, festival ready product to be approximately 45 minutes long. Still to come are the segments about suffragette Sarah Dudley Pettey from Yale University professor Dr. Glenda Gilmore and Oscar Marks’ influence upon the Jewish business community.

 
For a taste of what to expect, the “work in progress” cut is now available on Youtube: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7Fabct4rGIw.  (Although the Civil War did not last until 1870, this date coincides with the death of one of the subjects who was a participant in the Civil War.) 

Mark your calendars now to attend the première of Voices of New Bern.

Voices of New Bern, a Phi Theta Kappa Film

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A lot has been written about New Bern, North Carolina‘s colonial, revolutionary and Civil War eras.  In this documentary, the Craven Community College Phi Theta Kappa chapter has captured the growth of the city after the Civil War and until the destruction of the Great Fire of New Bern in 1922.  Students have interviewed local and national historians for this piece including: Nelson McDaniel, Board President of the New Bern Historical Society;  Mary Peterkin, Great Fire Historian;  David Cecelski, PhD, Author of The Waterman’s Song: Slavery and Freedom in Maritime North Carolina and The Fire of Freedom: Abraham Galloway’s Civil War; and Glenda Gilmore, PhD, Peter V. and C. Vann Woodward Professor of History, Yale University, Author Gender and Jim Crow: Women and the Politics of White Supremacy in North Carolina 1896-1920.

Captured on film are voices from the end of New Bern’s 19th and the turn of the 20th Centuries.  The documentary chronicles the trials and tribulations of this Swiss founded community as it became a safe haven for African-Americans after the Civil War.  The film also examines the unique roles that New Bern women played during this era. These included a spy, a pilot/photographer, and a columnist who fought through both racial and gender barriers.  The rise of a Jewish business man in a small Southern town is also chronicled, along with the invention of Pepsi in a downtown pharmacy.  Residents, survivors, and historians also give their perspectives of how the 1922 Great Fire affected the city’s African-American population.

 The following is the trailer for Voices of New Bern, to be premiered in Orringer Auditorium of Craven Community College this summer: http://youtu.be/PcHmJlPi6FA

Phi Theta Kappa chapter brings home 10 awards from regional conference

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By Sandy Wall

Craven Community College is going to need a new trophy case after the college’s chapter of the Phi Theta Kappa International Honor Society brought home an amazing 10 awards from the recent Carolinas Regional Phi Theta Kappa Convention.

Also at the convention, chapter official Joe Nevels II was elected to a one-year term as Phi Theta Kappa Vice President for North Carolina.    

Members of Craven Community College’s Phi Theta Kappa chapter and college leaders show off the 10 awards the chapter brought home from the recent Carolinas Regional Convention held March 18-20 in Clemmons. Also pictured is chapter official Joe Nevels II, fifth from left, who has been elected to a one-year term as Phi Theta Kappa Vice President for North Carolina. Photo by Sandy Wall, Craven CC Public Relations Officer

 “The recognition this group brings to the college is significant,” said Craven President Catherine Chew. “They’re a special group.”

Phi Theta Kappa is an international organization that recognizes the academic achievements of students at two-year institutions. To be eligible, a student must complete a minimum of 12 hours of curriculum course work at Craven and earn a grade point average of 3.5 or higher.

The strong performance by Craven’s chapter at the regional convention comes after an extremely busy period for the organization. The group has grown its membership and has worked hard to increase its profile on campus and in the community.

Over the last few months, chapter members helped commemorate New Bern’s 300th anniversary by researching and recording a series of historical “minutes” that were broadcast on Public Radio East.

Members also designed a series of historical placards to highlight significant figures and events in the city’s history. They’re now working on a historical documentary.

Chapter members have helped out with volunteer projects, both on campus and in the community, and several members have received individual recognition in the form of scholarships and other honors.

Six chapter members and advisor Kate Amerson attended the Phi Theta Kappa regional conference. The 10 awards earned by the group, known officially as the Alpha Phi Nu chapter, were:

  • Second Runner-Up for Most Distinguished Chapter (for its busy year of projects and service)
  • Distinguished Chapter Award
  • Carolinas Super Stars (Earned for participating in all regional events this year)
  • Five Star Chapter (the highest level available, up from its previous Three Star level)
  • Most Improved Chapter in the Carolinas (for the second year in a row)
  • Outstanding Participation in the Carolinas Region Honors In Action Program (for working with youth in educational settings)
  • Carolinas Four Gig Challenge (for participating in environmental programs throughout the year)
  • Distinguished Achievement in Regional Programs (for its work in the Democratization of Information in History category)
  • Paragon Award for chapter advisor Kate Amerson
  • Horizon Award for chapter advisor Kate Amerson (for involvement on a regional level)

Chapter President Jimmy Fulcher Jr. said he is proud to see the chapter’s year of hard work receive recognition at a regional level.

“We went to last year’s conference and earned designation as a Three Star Chapter and a Most Improved Award,” he said. “In one year’s time, we’ve gone from that position to one of the most honored chapters in the Carolinas and to having one of our members sitting on a regional board.”

Reference: http://www.cravencc.edu/

Phil Knight interviews David French, Kathryn Smaw Amerson, and Phi Theta Kappa Honor Society Students

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David French, Director of the History Society of Eastern North Carolina, Craven Community College History Instructor/Phi Theta Kappa Faculty Advisor Kathryn Smaw Amerson, and Phi Theta Kappa Honor Society students were interviewed this morning by Phil Knight on New Bern‘s Cable TV10.  On Saturday, March 12 the students will present their “Leadership in New Bern” research project, Tricentennial Minutes, New Bern: Freedom, War, and Pepsi.   This event will be hosted by the History Society of ENC at 2:00 in the New Bern Riverfront Convention Center.  This event is free and is open to the public. 

The Phil Knight Show