October 2017 marked 50 years since the establishment of Edgecombe Community College.
The institution was founded October 5, 1967. In August 1968, 64 students and 14 faculty members began the first classes at Edgecombe Technical Institute. Students enrolled in auto mechanics, cosmetology, welding, and a handful of other courses. The first graduating class had fewer than 30 members.
Since then, the College’s academic offerings have expanded to more than 130 degree, diploma, and certificate programs. In May 2017, ECC awarded 570 associate degrees, diplomas, and certificates to a total of 460 graduates.
Tied to the theme “Giving Our Community an Edge for 50 Years,” daily activities were held October 2–6 to celebrate the College’s mission of being dedicated to fulfilling the educational, training, and cultural needs of the community.
The public and campus community celebrated Curriculum Day on Monday, October 2, and joined departmental tours led by ECC faculty on both campuses. Morning tours took place on the Rocky Mount campus, and afternoon tours were held on the Tarboro campus.
Also on Monday, guests enjoyed a slideshow presentation on the “History of ECC Campus Buildings” at 12 p.m. on the Tarboro campus in the Fleming Building, Room 152. Monika Fleming, program coordinator of Historic Preservation and well-known local historian, presented the program.
On Tuesday, October 3, a special afternoon concert that was free and open to the public highlighted cultural opportunities. Songs and Stories featured singer, historian, and multi-instrumentalist Lightnin’ Wells and ECC’s own Eric Greene, director of cultural arts and a talented singer and musician. They performed at 1 p.m. in Keihin Auditorium.
The 50th celebration continued on Wednesday, October 4, with a focus on students. College faculty and staff cooked and served lunch to students on the Tarboro campus from 12 p.m. until 2 p.m. Games and special activities were held, and a shuttle transported students from the Rocky Mount campus to Tarboro.
On Thursday, October 5, the expanding footprint of Edgecombe Community College was underscored through the groundbreaking for the Center for Innovation at 11 a.m. on the Tarboro campus, followed by a luncheon at noon for College retirees and other stakeholders.
A celebration of employees closed the week on Friday, October 6, when employees were treated to a catered lunch.
Edgecombe Community College is a robust, thriving institution that serves as a beacon of light and hope for Edgecombe County. Our community is stronger and more successful because of the College.