Monthly Archives: August 2014

Uzbeks come to Durham Tech


Karin Abell shares information on Durham Tech’s ESL program with a group of education leaders from Uzbekistan who visited on Aug. 1 as part of the US Department of State’s International Visitor Leadership Program (IVLP). The Uzbeks were specifically interested in learning more about ESL programs in the US educational system, including integrated programs for teaching ESL and testing and evaluation. IVLP, which began in 1940, seeks to build mutual understanding between the US and other nations through short-term visits to the US for current and emerging foreign leaders.

ASUT department gears up for a new semester

ASUT potluck 3 ASUT potluck 2 ASUT potluck 1

On Aug. 12, the ASUT Department had two beginning of the year meetings, one at 4 p.m. and the other at 6 p.m., with a potluck in the cafeteria sandwiched in between. Full- and part-time faculty and staff were invited to attend; they brought side dishes to supplement the pulled pork and barbequed chicken from Backyard BBQ. After catching up with colleagues fresh from the summer break, attendees began to focus on the new semester.

August birthdays

Emerenciana Alejo

Darlene Bullock

Perry Cumbie

K. Leigh Forell

Ricky Glasgow

Joy Hansen

Barbara Jackson

Audrey Kern

David Kittrell

Stésha Little

Robert Matthews

Janel Mays

Sheryl McCloud

Kathy McKinley

Tom Murphy

Megan Nicholson

Melissa Ockert

Everette Pendergraft

Judy Roberts

Marilyn Slaughter

Janice Stuart

Marisa Sullivan

Johnathan Thacker

Diane Usher

Jessica Vaughan

Carver Weaver

Don Wheeler

Peter Wooldridge

Sandra Young

August anniversaries

29 – Sue Jackson
27 – Bill Ingram
24 – John Hurlburt
23 – Irene Laube, Marcia Daniell, Vernon Bridges
22 – Marianne Williams
21 – Aaron Dark, Perry Cumbie, Gene Sharpe
19 – Ricky Glasgow
18 – Ilene Britt, Patrick Coin, Elizabeth Penton
17 – Greg Walton
16 – Andrea Parrish, Connie Gomez-Joines, Martha Williams
15 – Michael Szczerbiak
14 – Roy Stallings, Willie Johnson, Joan Brown
13 – Robert Wilson
12 – Emma Borynski
11 – Jamia McIver-Eshiet, Brenda East, John Crutchfield, Julie Hoover, Lyndsay Al-Shibli, Micara Lewis, Susan Sutton, Suzanne Laudadio, Tom Beveridge
10 – David Rigsbee, Danny Francis, Dorothy Wood, Elecia Brown, Gabby McCutchen, James Weeks, Janel Mays, Kerry Cantwell, Mark Anderson, Robbi Muckenfuss, Robert Matthews, Svetlana Yokum, Erica Taylor
9 – Erik Townsend, Angela Fipps, Jacqueline Futrell, Shannon Hahn, Sheryl McCloud, Sheza Healey, Kara Battle, Jo Ann Molnar, Naomi Feaste
8 – Bijoy Patnaik, Cari Borresen, Lesley Chaffin, Lea Bingham
7 – Christine Husketh
6 – Isaac Thomas, Donna Littleton, Erin Riney, Mary Kennery, Marye Vance, Valarie Evans
5 – Sara Houston, Jonathan Cook, Michele Alexandre
4 – Gloria Gay, James Luxton, Cara Potter, Donnie Sommerfeldt, Jim DePalma, Jason Moldoff, John Cain, John Lee, Larry Haynes, Margaret Memory, Scott Neal, Johnnie Bratton
3 – Marisa Sullivan, Jemma Superville, Dorene Parker, Marguerita Best, Marina DelVecchio, Tina Bryant-Allen
2 – Amy Kern, Christine Dove, Daveta Strayhorn, Lindsey Carpenter, Sara Juarez
1 – Jaclyn Krohn, Tangie Key, Anthony Tolin, Barbara Jackson, Bryan Rufener, Christine Gunnigle, Emily Pakes, Janemarie Baker, Jennifer Fay, Jerry Oxendine, John Stauble, LaTonya Steele, Marie Fogarty, Marjorie Carter-Davis, Sally Parlier, William Creech

Shout out

Over the summer, Dr. Ingram received the following letter from a Durham Tech alum:

I am spending today working on completing admissions requirements for George Mason’s School of Law. As I’m doing this, I’m reflecting on my choice to return to college four years ago. My first step in doing so was attending Durham Tech for a couple night classes to increase my employability at the time.

My intent, at the time, was to add those night classes to a resume. It led to the beginning of an educational journey that has me at this point, almost four years later. Durham Tech was the springboard that led to my acceptance to St. Cloud State University. That led to two bachelor’s degrees and significant progress in a master’s in economics. It has also led to a scholarship for law school to George Mason.

I wanted to take a moment and share the fact that Durham Tech was an integral part of this journey, and the opportunities that I received there began a transition into a path that I would have been unable to accomplish without that initial starting point.

I would like to thank you, as a team, and specifically Janice Kerber and Mary Parker for their roles in teaching the two classes that started my return to school.

Joe Kucan

Durham Tech students excel at PBL conference

Durham Tech students Scott Wallace, Linda Johnson, Larry Novins, and Ben Foreman attended the Phi Beta Lambda National Leadership Conference in Nashville, June 24-27. Durham Tech advisors Charlene West and Michele Parrish also attended. The conference included a variety of competitions for students to showcase their business skills. Foreman took first place in the Help Desk competition; Wallace placed fourth in Computer Concepts; Novins came in seventh in Justice Administration. Congratulations! Future Business Leaders of America-Phi Beta Lambda (FBLA-PBL) is the largest and oldest student business organization. Conference participants gathered from across the United States and two countries to sharpen their core business skills, expand their networks, and participate in more than 55 business and business-related competitive events. For many students, the competitive events are the capstone activity of their academic careers. In addition to the competitions, students immersed themselves in educational workshops, visited an information-packed exhibit hall, and attended motivational keynotes on a broad range of business topics.

l-r: West, Wallace, Johnson, Novins, Foreman, and Parrish

l-r: West, Wallace, Johnson, Novins, Foreman, and Parrish

Underwriters Laboratory intern program energizes careers of Durham Tech students

If you have an electric device in your home, you’ve seen a tag with the simple UL logo attached to it somewhere, signifying that the device has been tested and approved by Underwriters Laboratory (UL). As stated on its website, UL certifies, validates, tests, inspects, audits, advises, and trains – all to advance its mission of promoting safe living and working environments through safety science. Over the past few years, Durham Tech’s Electrical Systems Technology program has acted as a conduit for UL, providing a steady stream of interns (referred to as “work-based learning students” at the college), many of whom have transitioned to full-time employees.

Like an alternating current, the benefits of this partnership flow both ways. Durham Tech students get meaningful, high-quality work experiences, while UL knows it can rely on Durham Tech to produce well-trained employees who are able to get up to speed quickly.

Daniel Carter, laboratory manager at UL, has been the primary supervisor for these students. According to Carter, “The program has been very beneficial to UL, and I’m glad to be part of it.” So far, six Durham Tech interns have impressed UL enough to be offered full-time positions, in jobs that range from conducting product safety tests to determining if products are immune to electromagnetic interference to testing devices for fire and shock hazards.

Carter added, “By working directly with Durham Tech, UL has assisted in developing a pool of talented individuals that we have been able to utilize in various testing disciplines across the company. It has been exciting and rewarding to help grow the Durham Tech/UL partnership to what it is today. We at UL are champions of progress, and we strive to positively impact society while ensuring its safety. This is one of the ways we demonstrate pride in being UL employees, as well as support our overall mission.”

The following UL employees began their careers at UL with the Durham Tech program, which subsequently led to them being hired full-time:

  • Christopher Edwards, laboratory technician in the High Tech lab, UL Headquarters, Northbrook, IL.
  • William Lee, laboratory technician in Commercial & Industrial unit (formerly Product Safety), UL, RTP.
  • Marion Pierce, laboratory technician, WiSE (Wireless, Interoperability, Security, and EMC), UL, RTP.
  • Joseph McGraw, laboratory technician, Electrical lab, UL, RTP.
  • Kelon Charles, laboratory technician, Commercial & Industrial unit (formerly Product Safety), UL, RTP.
  • JaVon Terrell, laboratory technician, Personal Protective Equipment unit, UL, RTP.

A seventh Durham Tech student, Sarah Thomson, is currently working as an intern at UL and is grateful for the opportunity, “At UL, I have been working with various people in the Electrical Testing lab to help me get a feel for the different types of work they do here. My experience has been primarily in components testing and lighting, but I have been able to observe and assist in some testing outside of those areas as well. It has been a really great experience.” Thomson plans to graduate in July with a degree in Electrical Systems Technology.

Micara Lewis, chair of Business Technologies and Education programs at Durham Tech, is thrilled with the partnership. “UL is a very exciting partner to work with for work-based learning. When we contact UL, they never hesitate to devote their time to this extension of the students’ learning. Each student who is afforded this opportunity receives quality training the field of electrical systems technology. Along with the training they receive, students also receive feedback on their ability to take the theories and skills learned in the classroom and apply them to hands on-situations. I am excited to work with UL each year because I am confident that our students will grow with the training UL provides.”







Dossier: Luis Olivieri-Robert

Name: Luis F. Olivieri-Robert

Hometown: Carolina, Puerto Rico

Luis Olivieri-Robert

How long have you been at Durham Tech? What’s your current position here? Have you had any others?

I was a Spanish instructor from 2003 until 2006 with Continuing Education. Since 2006, I have worked as an adjunct instructor of Spanish and history.

Which college or pro sports team do you root for?

NCSU and Boston Red Sox. I closely follow international competitions (basketball, volleyball, baseball, soccer, and track & field). I am myself a world-ranked Masters track and field competitor in long jump and javelin.

Do you volunteer in the community? If so, for which organization? What do you do?

I am a former board president and active volunteer with the NC Society of Hispanic Professionals. I’m also the Latino ministry coordinator for Grace Church in Chapel Hill.

What was your very first job? What did you learn from it?

Babysitter (mid 1970s); cleaner and gatekeeper for the University Episcopal Center (late 1970s). Do what is requested and expected from you and always put an extra effort. Be eager to learn.

Complete the following sentence: In my spare time, I like to…

garden, travel, and walk.

If you could have a dinner party with any three people (living or dead, real or fictional), who would be on your guest list?

My great-grandparents and Jesus.