When Sampson Technical Institute was chartered in 1967, few could really envision the remarkable cornerstone of the community it would become.
Yet today, 50 years later, Sampson Community College is a thriving educational facility that has grown from 50 students to nearly 1,700 enrolled in the school’s programs, with another 5,000-plus involved in continuing education classes and more still that walk the halls of the Early College High School.
Much has changed about the educational institution in those five decades, including locations and the addition of programs and buildings, but the core values established all those years ago remain at the heart of what makes this campus, its students and its faculty so very special.
The student-centered focus is key. That’s why we have seen through the years so many of its students become its faculty.
It’s not unusual to interview a faculty member who gushes about the wonderful atmosphere in which they work, comparing it to the similar atmosphere they experienced as a student there. Oftentimes the discussion comes with an aside about their children, all or some of whom have, or are planning to, become students at SCC as well.
It’s like a family there, long-time staff members will tell you.
And that, really, is what makes SCC special.
While true they have innovative agriculture classes, a stellar nursing progam, remarkable college courses that easily allow for the eventual transfer to a four-year university and a vast array of interesting ConEd classes in which to choose, it is the relationships between faculty and students that rises to the top of any list about what makes SCC that community cornerstone we referred to earlier.
Perhaps second to that relationship is the community support the college receives. From its hard-working trustees to its totally devoted Foundation directors to the countless individuals, businesses and industries who give unselfishly to the school through monetary donations year after year, one can see the commitment Sampson County has to its school.
People take ownership in it and, because of that, do their part to ensure it thrives.
Like our community, we, too, take pride in our college, the beauty of its campus, the success of its students, the care and concern of its faculty and the continued growth of its programs.
The last 50 years have proven that the vision of a few community members long ago could be realized.Back then, the thought of an institute of higher learning in our midst seemed nearly impossible. Today proves that what seems impossible can be.
As the college embarks on its next 50 years, we are sure there will be those who think the new visions of a growing campus are impossible, but decade after decade we have been shown that even impossible dreams, with community support and a willing faculty, have great promise.
We don’t know what the future holds for our great college, but we are certain of one thing —it will be amazing if the past and the present are to be the guides.
We celebrate with our college the wonders of a quick 50 years, and we tip our hat to every person who is responsible for where it has come along the way.