Local News

Methodist to be named a Sullivan School in May 2021

09 MUThe Algernon Sydney Sullivan Foundation has selected Methodist University to award Algernon Sydney Sullivan and Mary Mildred Sullivan medallions and certificates beginning at the May 2021 commencement ceremony.

The University will also house a permanent plaque where the names of the recipients will be added annually.

“It is a tremendous honor for Methodist University to join the ranks of other distinguished universities and colleges that are authorized to present the Sullivan Award,” said Methodist University President Stanley T. Wearden.

“This will become one of our highest distinctions for students, an honor that recognizes the well-rounded student: academically strong, meaningfully engaged in the community, driven by a commitment to putting others before themselves. These are the qualities to which we aspire. Our mission statement commits Methodist University to truth, virtue, justice, and love, which correspond well with the goals of the Sullivan Foundation. This award gives Methodist the opportunity to recognize members of our university community who best exemplify these values.”

The medallions are awarded to college students and members of the college community who have demonstrated noble character and have acted as humble servants by serving those around them. Rev. Kelli Taylor, Methodist University’s vice president of Religious Life and Community Engagement, received a medallion in 1989 when studying at Converse College.

“Receiving the Sullivan medallion moves beyond recognition and joins recipients to a community of scholars who value the ideals of heart, mind, and conduct as evince of a spirit of love for and helpfulness to humanity,” said Taylor. “Nobility of character, a criterion that the Sullivan Foundation defines as ‘when one goes outside the narrow circle of self-interest and begins to spend himself for the interests of mankind,’ is critical to a society immersed in conversations of racial justice, love for neighbor, and unity.”

Notable recipients include former First Lady Elanor Roosevelt, TV personality Mr. Fred Rogers, former Secretary of Defense Robert Gates, and tennis star Betty Pratt.

The Sullivan Foundation was established in 1934 and began awarding service-based scholarships to deserving students while establishing endowments at certain schools within its network. Its roots go back nearly 80 years earlier, when Algernon Sydney Sullivan himself was a young lawyer in Indiana. He used his legal talents and personal wealth to help those in trouble in his community, building a reputation for taking on clients who could pay him little or nothing when he believed their cause was just. When Algernon and his wife Mary Mildred Sullivan moved to New York in 1856, they remained dedicated to the cause of helping people in trouble. A believer in equality for all, Algernon also sponsored the first African American member of the New York Bar Association.

The honor that Algernon would have appreciated the most was the one he received when the New York Southern Society — an organization he himself founded — established the Algernon Sydney Sullivan Award in 1890. The award was created to recognize college students in the South for “excellence of character and service to humanity.” Algernon and Mary’s only son, George, continued and cemented the Sullivans’ legacy when, in 1934, he created the Sullivan Foundation to ensure the continued existence of the awards. The Foundation remains as strong as ever today, building a legacy of service, courage, and character.

Methodist University is an independent, four-year institution of higher education with approximately 2,000 students from across the U.S. and more than 70 countries. Methodist University offers more than 80 undergraduate and graduate degree programs (including doctoral-level options) on campus and online.

Coworking spaces offer opportunities for business and employees

01 IMG 2397According to a 2020 research study by coworkingresources.org, an expected 5 million people will be working from coworking spaces by 2024, a 158 percent increase since 2020.

The need for facilities to provide coworking spaces is already being addressed in Fayetteville with current and new offices sweeping in.

Fayetteville’s newest coworking venture called The Hub is owned by Tyson Commercial Real Estate. The space, located at 109 Hay St., is set to open in March, and join existing spaces like Revolutionary Coworking and The Common to accommodate the increasing need for coworking facilities.

“The Hub is Fayetteville’s community connector and offers a turnkey experience and workspaces for business owners and entrepreneurs in our area,” Henry Tyson, co-founder of The Hub, said. “It’s a space to incubate an idea for an emerging company, a place for people to get together and do business with one another all while spurring each other on towards accomplishing their goals.”

The 3,500 sq ft. coworking space will offer small office spaces, desks, storage, conference rooms for meetings, patio space, and options for designated parking with the goal of flexibility for customers.

It’s a membership model said Clark Rinehart, consultant for The Hub. There is a monthly option, or folks can also come in and use the space for the day or week, Rinehart said.

Rinehart owns a coworking business in Raleigh and says his expertise is the layout and design of such spaces helps him make recommendations for the Fayetteville market.

While there are other great providers in Fayetteville, Rinehart said The Hub aims to establish a premium working space with all the amenities people expect in a professional office space.

Due to pandemic social distancing restrictions, The Hub will accommodate about 55 to 60 spots for coworking. The facility will provide premium coffee, dedicated parking, high speed Wi-Fi and staff on site to help with any issues.

Our team has worked really hard to create a premium and professional environment that will foster growth from the heart of the city, Tyson said.

The Hub is offering scheduled tours and information to potential customers and can be reached at http://hubfaye.com/landing-page/ or their email hello@hubfaye.com

“Is the traditional office space dead? No, but a hybrid model having flexibility — like you can work from home and then have a place perhaps even a small footprint companies had prior to the pandemic — that’s why I think these models will thrive,” Rinehart said. “I do think there is a market for coworking spaces in Fayetteville, especially downtown, lots of small businesses, military, entrepreneurs and people who have been running very successful companies from home who are yearning for these types of spaces.”

The Fayetteville Cumberland County Economic Development Corporation’s CORE Innovation Center located in the PWC building downtown offers tech-focused coworking spaces.

The Core Innovation Center is little different than a coworking space. Designed for government contracting and energy companies, it places emphasis on those doing business with the government, said Robert Van Geons, President/CEO of FCEDC.

Launched about 18 months ago, it hosts military contractors and technology companies with FCEDC’s that share their primary focus of recruiting and developing new businesses for Fayetteville.

The effort was designed to support the adoption of advanced technology in the Fayetteville-Cumberland County area and work to retain innovative entrepreneurs, he said.

“I think that it’s a very exciting development for our community to have various coworking spaces, many that are currently successful and many that are starting up,” Van Geons said. “It provides options for people that are teleworkers, entrepreneurs, startups.”

Kyle Simms, who rents a space out of Revolutionary Coworking located downtown said he works for a medical device company based in Oregon.

“The company hired me, and I didn’t want to move to Oregon, so they let me stay here in North Carolina, so the company picks up my rent space. It's a good flexible way of giving me an office,” Simms said. “The biggest reasons I need an office is for personal meetings, small groups and the conference room space for larger focus groups.”

As a member, Simms describes one perk of getting to use 20 hours of conference room time every month at Revolutionary Coworking. When he was working from home, it would cost $700 to $800 to rent a conference room at a hotel.

“I was already working remotely out of the coworking space since 2017 before the pandemic,” he said. “I have had an office there since, but now I use it more just because the kids are at home and remote learning and it’s made it a bit difficult to work from home.”

Revolutionary Coworking offers different membership levels, for more info visit https://www.revolutionarycoworking.com.

While family may be a distraction for some who work from home, others can feel a sense of isolation working from home. Some workers want the option to come work in a dedicated space two to three days outside of their home, Rinehart said.

“Bringing people who have certain interests and affinities together to really create this greater sense of ‘we are in this together’ and we want to see this innovation hub emerge from the heart of Fayetteville,” Rinehart said.
Van Geons said there is absolutely a market in Fayetteville for coworking spaces.

“If you look at the Commons, they are expanding their coworking space on Morganton Road, The Hub will serve more everyday folks, and Revolutionary has more short-term folks as well,” he said. “Each of them is serving a different audience and there's room for a lot more here.”

COVID-19 rental assistance relief funding available

08 N2004P64099HFamilies needing rental assistance in Cumberland County and Fayetteville have several options available to them. Charities, churches and government agencies provide routine assistance in the county. Services offered include shelter, section 8 housing choice vouchers, emergency rental help, low-income housing, and money for security deposits. The U.S. Treasury Department has awarded more than $10 million to the city of Fayetteville and Cumberland County to implement a local Emergency Rental Assistance Program. It’s a significant part of the federal government’s COVID-19 relief package.

An agency is being sought to administer the program and provide direct services of the ERAP which are designed to assist families struggling to make rental and utility payments. Renters in North Carolina cannot be evicted for non-payment of rent. Gov. Roy Cooper issued Executive Order 91 extending the eviction moratorium through March 31. “Both the city and county have issued a joint request for proposal to locate a firm to administer this program because we are expecting an overwhelming number of applications that will be beyond our current capacity to administer,” said Cumberland County Community Development Director Dee Taylor.

Once a firm is selected, a contract is expected to be executed in March or April. No less than 90 percent of the $10 million must be used for direct financial assistance, including rent, rental and utility arrears, utilities and home energy costs, and other expenses related to housing. Funds granted to the city and county generally expire on December 31, 2021. If you or someone you know needs rental, utility or other types of assistance, contact the Coordinated Entry Referral System at 910-479-4663.

A housing referral specialist will conduct a preliminary needs assessment and refer the caller to the appropriate agency for assistance. Delays should be expected because of a high volume of inquiries. Income restrictions apply. In addition to the rental assistance program, the Low-Income Energy Assistance Program administered by the Department of Social Services can help with utility bills. Applications can be accessed at http://www.ccdssnc.com/energy-assistance-programs or by contacting the DSS LIEAP message line at 910-677-2821 or DSS at 910-323-1540.

An “eligible household” is defined as a rental household in which at least one or more individuals meet the following criteria: Qualifies for unemployment or has experienced a reduction in household income, incurred significant costs, or experienced a financial hardship due to COVID-19; demonstrates a risk of experiencing homelessness or housing instability; and has a household income at or below 80 percent of the area median. Households that include an individual who has been unemployed for the 90 days prior to application for assistance and households with income at or below 50 percent of the area median will be prioritized for assistance.

Cumberland County is asking people who are interested in applying for grant money to gather some documents before submitting their applications. Applicants will need to provide proof of residency (driver’s license or any other official document) and a copy of rental statement or lease agreement and/or utility bills showing past due amounts. Applicants will also need to verify their household income and provide proof of financial hardship for the previous two months.

Renaming Fort Bragg

07 FOrt Bragg signA new federal commission charged with renaming military sites named for Confederate leaders has three years to complete its work. The appointees are likely to face significant political pressure from local officials and members of Congress as they review and propose changes to a host of military locations named for Confederate officers and officials.

The most prominent of these are 10 Army installations, including Fort Bragg. Some conservative lawmakers have worked to block the changes, arguing the move would be confusing and upsetting to communities surrounding the well-known sites. Under the rules laid out by Congress in the fiscal 2021 defense authorization act, the panel will develop plans to replace the names while “incorporating local sensitivities associated with the naming or renaming
of assets.”

President Joe Biden is on record supporting name changes. The commission must submit its report on recommendations regarding military sites by October 2022. Under the law, the Secretary of Defense must implement the commission’s plan no later than Jan. 1, 2024.

Three local home invasions this month

06 crime handcuffFayetteville Police are probing at least three home invasions over the last three weeks. The most recent incident occurred at a home in Haymount. Officers were dispatched to a residence on Ellington St. at 5:18 a.m. Feb 13. Police spokesman Sgt. Jeremy Glass said a man entered the residence through a rear sunroom door. The homeowner spotted the subject in a bedroom where his wife was sleeping. “Startled, the suspect discharged a firearm ... then fled the scene,” Glass said. No one was hurt.

Detectives are requesting the public’s assistance in reviewing security camera footage along Ellington Street toward Morganton Road during the night and early morning hours of Feb. 13. Anyone with video evidence is asked to contact police. The FPD reminds residents to lock their doors and windows, set their alarm systems, and remain vigilant to suspicious activity in their neighborhoods.


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