Vevlyn Lowe was recently honored for her devotion to teaching musicians at Sampson Middle School.
The educator was recently named the Belk Foundation Honored Educator Scholar for 2015-2016. It was bestowed upon her by the Development Foundation of the North Carolina Center for the Advancement of Teaching, Inc. (NCCAT).
“It’s a wonderful opportunity to represent Clinton City Schools,” Lowe said.
The Belk Foundation supports education by investing in schools and organization that work to make sure students graduate from high school and are productive in college. Since it was created by the department store organization, more than $28 million to charities across the Southeast.
Every year, the Belk Honored Scholarship provides a public school teacher an opportunity to attend a four-day NCCAT program of their choice. The scholarship will cover costs such as instruction and program materials. During the program, Lowe said she would like to focus on technology and Google Apps for Education, a new platform being used by the school district.
In addition to having program expenses such as food and lodging, travel and payment for a substitute teacher while in attendance, scholarship winners receive $250 to use in the classroom. She told her class about the money and they made a suggestion to Lowe to spend it on a pizza party, but she has other ideas that will probably benefit them in the future.
“We’re probably going to spend it on more music,” Lowe said about an alternative.
NCCAT is recognized nationally for developing professional programming for teachers. Established by state legislators in the mid-1980s, NCCAT provides a year-round curriculum of intensive cross-disciplinary programs with a focus on digital learning, early grades literacy and teacher leadership. About 5,000 teachers participate each year at the center’s campus locations in Cullowhee and Ocracoke. Jean Powell of Clinton, the state’s teacher of the year in 1983, prompted state leaders to take action on establishing the organization.
Lowe is now in her 20th year at Sampson Middle School and educates more than 200 students.
“We have wonderful students and supportive parents,” she said. “The students enrolled, want to be in band and I couldn’t ask for anything else. I have kids who want to be in my program.”
The program is currently preparing for a winter concert, which is scheduled for 7 p.m. Thursday, Dec. 10 and all-district band auditions. Soon, the students will be “hunting” at Hubb’s Corn Maze at Hubb’s Farm. The fundraiser is scheduled for 7 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 29.
Her first three years of teaching took place in the Sampson County district, teaching music at Hobbton’s middle and high schools.
She began learning music at a young age in Edenton, under her church pastor Rendall Cosand and Otis Strother, her middle and high school band director. Later earned a bachelor’s in music education from East Carolina University and a master’s in the same field from Florida State University.
Reach Chase Jordan at 910-249-4617. Follow us on Twitter at @SampsonInd and like us on Facebook.