NC A&T: ‘Our pride, our future’

By: By Larry Sutton - Contributing columnist

What a great year to be associated with North Carolina A&T State University, one of the nation’s exceptional institutions of higher learning. With the start of the 2015-16 academic year back on August 19, some 2,400 new students joined the Aggie family, prompting Chancellor Harold L. Martin, Sr. to proclaim, “We are honored that they made the decision to continue their academic excellence at NC A&T.”

And these new additions to the Aggie family will do just fine if they heed the advice of the recently crowned “Miss Black USA,” A&T Alumna Madison Gibbs who declared, “You never know what you can do until you try. You really just have to push yourself and work hard and it can happen.”

From its humble beginnings in 1891 as one of the country’s historically black land-grant universities down to the present 2015-16 academic year, North Carolina A&T is celebrating 125 years of educational excellence. The yearlong events and activities, running from August 2015 through May 2016, will be centered around the theme, “Our Pride, Our Future.”

While commenting on the importance of the 125th anniversary celebration, Chancellor Martin said, “This year we will celebrate the pride of our university— our rich history and traditions, the innovations and accomplishments of our students, alumni, faculty and staff—and look forward to our future of preeminence.”

One of the main signature events that has been organized to celebrate A&T’s tremendous milestone will be the “Birthday Bash,” scheduled for March 24, 2016, 4 p.m., at Aggie Stadium. Including food and games, this event will be a pep rally-style celebration with appearances by the Blue & Gold Marching Machine and Aggie cheerleaders. The event is free and open to the public.

At the same time NC A&T is celebrating its 125th anniversary, the U.S. News & World Report’s 2016 Best Colleges rankings has declared, “North Carolina Agricultural and Technical State University is the No. 1 public historically black university in the nation.”

As the heart of the A&T family, the various alumni chapters, including Sampson County, remain committed to maintaining NC A&T’s rich tradition in academics, research, discovery and community engagement and outreach, while being a part of a legacy that has changed the world.

Started in 2011 and officially chartered on Dec. 15, 2012, the Sampson County Chapter of the NC A&T Alumni Association is still committed to helping make dreams come true. With that in mind, the chapter’s paramount focus has been on creating opportunities for securing scholarship dollars for deserving local students who wish to attend NC A&T. Presently, the local chapter, under the leadership of President John E. Williams, is conducting a holiday scholarship ticket raffle with the cash prize drawings slated for Dec. 15.

If anyone would like to join the Aggie family and become a part of the Sampson County alumni chapter, we encourage you to attend our monthly meetings on each second Monday at First Baptist, 900 College St., Clinton, at 6:30 p.m. Every Aggie. Every Year. Because that’s what AGGIES DO!

Larry Sutton is a former teacher at Clinton High School.

Larry Sutton is a former teacher at Clinton High School.

By Larry Sutton

Contributing columnist

Larry Sutton is a former teacher at Clinton High School.