Whether you have attended Fayetteville State University, have a child enrolled in one of the surrounding schools or has needed a helping hand by an organization in Fayetteville, Dr. Teresa Pickney has affected your life. Pickney has worked more than 16 years in the nonproﬁ t sector in Fayetteville. The long list of organizations she is involved with include organizations like Fayetteville Urban Ministries, Fayetteville-N.C. Business Chamber, N.C. Center for Nonproﬁ ts, Fayetteville Young Professionals and Boy and Girls Club of America, as well as national organizations.
Pickney moved to Fayetteville more than 16 years ago with her husband, who is in the military. Recently, he retired from the military. However, for Pickney and her family, Fayetteville is home and they aren’t planning to go anywhere.
Pickney is the Director of the Office of College Access Programs at Fayetteville State University as well as President and Executive Consultant of T. Pinckney & Associates.
She has raised more than $7.8 million in-kind contributions for education and the needs of the community. Pickney has always been involved in the community no matter where she lived, however her passion for education came while she was in college studying criminal justice.
“While studying criminal justice and researching statistics I realized education is the key out of poverty. What I learned from the criminal justice system is to make an impact you must start with kids,” Pickney explained.
She has had the opportunity to encourage low income and first generation college students since 1994. “My greatest joy is seeing my students and them telling me they have graduated college and are productive citizens,” Pickney said.
Pickney still remembers the first person she helped get into college. Years later she still has the letter that student sent thanking her. Now, Pickney has helped a thousand kids get into college with the same excitment.
“I think it’s important to empower students with the knowledge to make the decision to go to college. It’s about opportunity.” Pickney said.
Being a supervisor and consultant to many programs, Pickney is involved in giving many students the opportunity to go to college. It’s heart-warming for her to be able to reach out and help so my people.
“My reach is very broad, seeing my impact is much bigger then I think it is,” Pickney said.
However, Pickney not only aids in the development of educational outreach, she supports many nonprofit organizations though strategic planning and evaluation at little or no cost to the organization.
“To continue to do the great work these organizations do in the community, strategic planning ensures success by allowing the organization to function effectively,” Pickney said.
One of the ways Pickney has chosen to give back to the community is by founding the 2nd Annual Back-to-School Teen Explosion Conference for students ages 13-18. The event will be held on July 27, at Westover Recreation Center and provides critical skills for teens about education, career options and individual empowerment.
“It’s an exciting day to motivate students,” Pickney said. “I think it’s important we empower students and give them the knowledge and the opportunity to go and be successful in college.”
Pinkney often tells her two children, “knowledge is power, if you know something that can never be taken away.”
For more information about the conference or to register visit www.teenexplosionconference.com or check out the event on Facebook.