Local News

Fayetteville Rotary Club sponsors students at Youth Leadership Conference

Rotary youth 1Eighteen Cumberland County high school students, sponsored by the Rotary Club of Fayetteville, participated in Rotary International’s District 7730’s annual Rotary Youth Leadership Conference Jan. 27-29 at the Trinity Center in Pine Knoll Shores, North Carolina.

Rotary Youth Leadership Awards is an intensive leadership experience organized by Rotary clubs and districts where high school students develop skills as a leader while having fun and making connections.

The Fayetteville students joined 53 other students from Rotary District 7730, to connect with Rotary and community leaders, build communication and problem-solving skills, and learn strategies for becoming a dynamic leader in their school and community.

Students also participated in a food packing service project with Rise Against Hunger.

“In a world that’s ever changing at a moment's notice, we are proud to sponsor 18 students’ admission to the Rotary Youth Leadership Awards program,” said Brandon Price, President of the Fayetteville Rotary.

“These students learn real life skills that will enable them to become the future leaders our communities desperately need. Learning how to communicate and the ability to problem solve are under appreciated skills students are taught, along with helping them to discover strategies for becoming a dynamic leader in their schools and communities.”

Fayetteville students represented Cross Creek Early College High School, Cumberland International Early College, E.E. Smith High School, Gray’s Creek High School, Jack Britt High School and Massey Hill Classical High School.

“RYLA gave me the opportunity to meet several other like-minded individuals,” said Stella Martyak, a Junior at Massey Hill Classical High School and RYLA attendee.

“This experience will help me greatly in the future. I learned new leadership skills that I can now bring back to my school and share with other leaders. The skills I learned will help me be a better leader and person wherever life may take me.”

Léora Desgranges, a French exchange student, was also one of the Fayetteville students who attended. Desgranges attends Jack Britt High School and is living in Fayetteville as part of the Rotary International's Exchange Student program.

“I chose to attend RYLA because as the exchange student of the District 7730, it’s another opportunity offered by Rotary,” said Desgranges.

“What’s more I wanted to meet new people and to know more about leadership skills.”

The Fayetteville Rotary Club annually coordinates the selection of local students for RYLA and pays the full expense for the students to attend.
Following RYLA, the students attend weekly Fayetteville Rotary meetings, and share their experience with Rotary Club members.
Mary Ledford, a Senior at Gray’s Creek High School and two-time RYLA participant, shared her experience at the Feb. 23 Rotary Club meeting.

“This experience was one that has left a great impression on my leadership skills, my community awareness and my network of like-minded, service-oriented students,” she said.

“RYLA rejuvenates students who already have service-oriented minds to be inventive and brave in their endeavors in their community,” said Ledford.
Rotary Club of Fayetteville

“We are very proud of this initiative and the work done by those to make it happen,” said Price.

“The Fayetteville Rotary Club has been a group of community and business leaders for more than 100 years. Supporting initiatives like RYLA ensures our club, our schools, and our communities continue to thrive with well-rounded talented leaders.”

The Fayetteville Rotary Club, established in 1920, is a member of Rotary International District 7730. The district includes 50 clubs from 15 counties in Southeastern North Carolina dedicated to providing Service Above Self.

Rotary District 7730 is a member of Rotary International, an organization of over 1.4 million business and professional folks worldwide who are collectively committed to doing good in the world with its pressing humanitarian challenges.

For more information visit https://fayettevillerotaryclub.org/.

Fayetteville Rotary Club sponsored 18 Youth Leadership Awards delegates to attend the annual leadership conference in Pine Knolls Shores. The conference helps build communication and problem-solving skills and teaches strategies for becoming dynamic leaders in the community. (Photo courtesy Fayetteville Rotary Club)

FTCC can help prepare students for ‘Cloud’ job opportunities

web cloud The cloud is ubiquitous. It is pervasive. It is everywhere. It is here. And it is staying. If you have ever used a computer connected to the internet, you’ve used the cloud.

Once a novel term used as a metaphor for the internet, it is now a household term used by the seasoned and the young. It is often used to describe where your data lives, where you work, where you play, and/or where you study. With such a large-scale adoption comes extensive employment opportunities in the cloud space.

If you have ever used the storage services provided by Apple, you’ve enjoyed the benefits of the cloud by having your pictures off loaded from your phone to free up space and back them up online, in the cloud.

But, what is the cloud? It is a collection of computers working together to store your data on remote servers or offer apps, services and resources online for pretty much any project or activity you can conceive of. Examples of cloud services include Yahoo mail, office productivity tools available via Microsoft 365 and Adobe products for your creative self.

Some benefits of using the cloud for both small and large organizations include data security, ability to access your data and apps from anywhere, data analysis capabilities, backups, scalability, flexibility, and resiliency, along with reduced IT, business and operating expenses. Amazon Web Services and Microsoft Azure are the top two cloud service providers. They each offer over 200 services to help you build, run and manage applications across a variety of boundaries including on-premises, in the cloud, or a hybrid environment.

Opportunities abound in the cloud space. But to take advantage of them, you need the proper training and/or industry certifications — you need two out of three things to get a job in information technology: education, experience and industry certifications.

A four-year college degree is not essential; a certificate in cloud computing, networking or security will suffice.

Alternatively, an associate degree from a two-year college, such as FTCC, is a sound option as you will pick up some academic certificates along the way and get a lot of valuable hands-on exposure.

Industry certifications are credentials you earn by passing an exam that is typically administered by a third party such as Pearson VUE. The AWS Certified Cloud Practitioner (CLF-C01) and Microsoft Azure Fundamentals (AZ-900) are examples of cloud certifications sponsored by AWS and Microsoft respectively.

FTCC has a Pearson VUE testing center at the Fayetteville campus that proctors a vast and wide variety of industry certification exams.

If you only have one of the three (education, experience or industry certification), it may be a bit more difficult to land an opportunity, but not impossible.
Having two out of three dramatically improves your chances and will certainly help you earn an excellent salary (averaging between $50 and 65,000) for an entry-level position.

Having all three means there’s a very good chance you’ll land an opportunity that pays an excellent salary (six figures not uncommon).

If you are looking for a career change or want to turbo-charge your earning potential in the exciting field of cloud computing, FTCC is your smart choice.
To learn more, visit www.faytechcc.edu/.

Woodpeckers Reading Initiative helps local students, schools

2023 Bunkers All Star Reading ProgramReady, set, read!

It’s that time again for kids, grades K-5, to get lost in a great book as the Woodpeckers return for their second annual “Bunker’s All Star Reading Program.”

The challenge is on for children in Cumberland and surrounding counties, beginning Monday, March 13. Participants are encouraged to read for at least 20 minutes daily, five times weekly for four weeks, to win big prizes for themselves and their school.

Using a special bookmark to keep track of their progress, once students reach a “home run,” they can exchange their tracker at the Truist Box Office at Segra Stadium for a free ticket to one of two home games: Friday, April 28 or Sunday, April 30.

Additionally, students can bring up to ten family members to purchase a $9 discounted ticket for that day’s game.

Students who complete the challenge will be invited to walk around the field in a Pre-Grame Parade before each of the two designated games to celebrate their awesome reading achievement.

“This is our way to promote reading and academic success in children K-5,” Landrey Young, the Woodpeckers’ Community and Media Relations Manager, told Up & Coming Weekly.

New to the program this year is the addition of home-schooled families, a change the Woodpeckers are “really excited” to implement.
According to North Carolinians For Home Education, as of the 2021-22 school year, there are over 5,000 registered home-schools between Cumberland and Harnett counties, with numbers growing steadily every year. A move to include this largely overlooked population ensures that outreach initiatives truly serve everyone in the community.

In addition to rewarding students for their hard work, the Woodpeckers have also included an incentive for participating schools this year. Students must include the name of their school in addition to their name and grade when turning in their bookmarks.

The top three schools with the highest redemption rate will receive a cash donation to their library courtesy of the Woodpeckers Foundation.

Several schools have already signed up for the program. Of the 20,000 bookmarks reserved for the event, fewer than 1000 remain as the calendar inches closer to the official start date. Students who already have their trackers are encouraged to start their reading adventure now — no need to wait.

The “Bunker’s All Start Reading Program” aligns with the community presence the Woodpeckers have built since they arrived in Fayetteville. School drives, family fun days and a calendar full of activities geared toward the children of Cumberland County gives insight into what the sports organization truly values outside of winning games.

“We are really dedicated to the youth and youth sports in our area,” Young said. “We want kids to be excited about reading, help support their schools, and it gives us an opportunity to become more connected to schools in the area.”

For more information about the program or to sign up, email Landrey Young at lyoung@astros.com by Friday, March 10.

Hope Mills board to vote Monday on altering terms for elective office

Hope MIlls TOwn Hall The town board will consider changing the format for electing a mayor and town commissioners to provide for staggered four-year terms when it meets Monday, March 6.

Currently, those officials are elected every two years. The board will vote on whether to alter the town charter to have elections for four-year, staggered terms with elections held in odd-numbered years.

The board will meet at 7 p.m. in City Hall.

At its last meeting, the board opened the floor to allow anyone to speak for or against the proposed change. No one spoke in favor of staggered terms; two residents voiced opposition to the new term structure as well as allowing the commissioners to approve changing the charter themselves.

The matter could be put to a vote of town residents if enough of them sign a petition to call a referendum. At least 10% of the town’s registered voters must sign the petition to force a vote.
The last time the town considered changing terms, voters decided to keep terms at two years.

Annexation decision

The board of commissioners also will hold a hearing on a contiguous annexation of 1.2 acres at 3808 Park Garden court.
Residents are invited to speak for or against the annexation during the public-comment period. Speakers must register with the town clerk at least 15 minutes before the start of the meeting and are asked to limit their comments to three minutes.

The board also will consider the Sales Tax Interlocal Agreement.

The Cumberland County Commissioners announced the county’s intention to change the way sales tax revenue is distributed from per-capita, or per person, to ad-valorem, or according to property value, according to the agenda set by Chancer McLaughlin, the interim town manager.

The Cumberland County Mayors Coalition, which includes Hope Mills Mayor Jackie Warner as vice chair, asked the county to grant a five-year extension of the current agreement, but the plan was rejected.

According to a new proposal presented by the county, the agreement has been extended once in 2019.

According to Cumberland County’s website, the mayors of Eastover, Falcon, Fayetteville, Godwin, Hope Mills, Linden, Spring Lake, Stedman and Wade and the chairman of the Cumberland County Board of Commissioners make up the Cumberland County Mayors Coalition. The coalition meets quarterly.

The current sales tax agreement, which was signed in 2003, expires on June 30. That could result in a loss of about $1.9 million in sales tax revenue for the town in the first fiscal year, according to the memo. That would likely increase taxes for Hope Mills residents.

The county has offered an agreement that delays the change to ad-valorem taxation until June 2025, but Cumberland County would receive 100% of any growth.
The agreement must be approved by all municipalities before March 15 or the county will proceed with the move to ad-valorem taxation.

The interlocal agreement extension must be signed by people representing the municipalities of Fayetteville, Hope Mills, Stedman, Spring Lake, Wade, Falcon, Godwin, Linden, and Eastover and the county.

The Hope Mills Board of Commissioners is expected to discuss Cumberland County’s proposal at Monday’s board meeting.

Library branches to close some Wednesdays for staff training

cliffdale library Copy Branches of the Cumberland County Public Library will be closed on select Wednesdays in March and April for one-day staff training, according to a news release.

Library users will still be able to access materials online, renew book checkouts and drop off returned books.

The dates and locations of staff training closings are:

  • March 8: Cliffdale Regional Library, 6882 Cliffdale Road, and West Regional Library, 7469 Century Circle.
  • March 15: Headquarters Library, 300 Maiden Lane.
  • March 22: North Regional Library, 855 McArthur Road, and Bordeaux Branch, 3711 Village Drive.
  • March 29: East Regional Library, 4809 Clinton Road, and Hope Mills Branch, 3411 Golfview Road, Hope Mills.
  • April 12: Spring Lake Branch, 101 Laketree Blvd., Spring Lake.

All other locations will remain open. Book drops at closed locations will be available for return of library materials, the release said.
For more information call 910-483-7727 or visit www.cumberlandcountync.gov/library.


Latest Articles

  • ‘Ballad of Green Beret’ composer’s guitar on display at ASOM
  • A2Z run to benefit March of Dimes, local NICU
  • Arts Council receives Youth Growth Stock Trust grant to support Artists in Schools initiative
  • Board approves Crown Event Center concept design
  • Cassandra knows best ... maybe
  • Coyote sightings increase as pup season begins
Up & Coming Weekly Calendar

Advertise Your Event: