KENANSVILLE — The State Board of Community Colleges made an official decision on the Presidency of Pitt Community College Friday morning. Dr. Lawrence Rouse, President of James Sprunt Community College, a finalist in the presidential search, was officially approved for the position. Effective Aug. 1, 2018, Rouse will become the fifth president of Pitt Community College.
“I am very honored and humbled to accept this position at Pitt,” said Rouse. “I am excited about what the future holds in this new position… I have cherished my time at James Sprunt Community College. It has been a privilege to lead James Sprunt as President and work with some of the best educators in the state.”
Rouse’s many accomplishments at the college include:
• The development of the commercial driver’s license program slated to start in the Spring of 2019
• The implementation of the diesel and heavy equipment program to support local agri-business industries
• The establishment of a viticulture and enology curriculum program to support the production of grapes and wine making in Eastern North Carolina, one of only two programs in the state
• Organizational restructuring to make the college more effective and efficient so that it could respond quickly to the needs of the service area
• Guided the institution to three years of superior performance based on legislative man-dated performance measures resulting in additional funding received upon the achievement of the superior rating
• Initiated the Department of Corrections Training program which serves four correctional institutions in the Southeastern Region, serving over 500 correctional officers and staff members
• Successfully led the college through the SACS Reaffirmation process in 2008
• Lead collaborated effort to receive $3.9 million dollars in Tech Hire Grant funding from the US Department of Labor for consortia of four North Carolina Community Colleges.
• Lead the efforts to receive two Golden LEAF Foundation grants totaling approximately $2 million dollars for programs and facilities at James Sprunt Community College
“I came prepared when I arrived at James Sprunt,” said Rouse. “I knew I wanted to make a difference at the college and in Duplin County. I feel that the college is better off now than when I started here thirteen years ago. I hope that I have been able to make a change for the better for all of our students, faculty, and staff, and the community.”
In 2016, Rouse received the President of the Year Award from the North Carolina State Board of Community Colleges. In 2018, he was awarded the Distinguished College President Administrator Award by the Phi Theta Kappa Carolinas Region, as well as was elected to serve as the Southeastern Regional Director of Phi Beta Sigma Fraternity, Inc.
“This is not an ending but a new beginning both for myself and for James Sprunt,” said Rouse in a statement to faculty and staff. “I thank you for your continued support and under-standing during this transition.”
Rouse has served as President at James Sprunt Community College since January 2005.