Saturday, Dec. 4, was a triple-strength red-letter day for the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences. That’s when alumni, donors and friends of the College gathered at the Sheraton Imperial Research Triangle Park to celebrate the success of the CALS Campaign for N.C. State Students and the W.B. "Bob" Jenkins Agricultural Scholarship and to recognize scholarship donors and recipients.
Dean James Oblinger welcomed the audience to the three-part gala celebration, which included presentations by Chancellor Marye Anne Fox. Among special guests were CALS Campaign Committee co-chairs Bill Fike, Mozelle Costner-Parker and Bryan Perry; Norris Tolson, Bob Jenkins Scholarship Committee member and former secretary of the state Department of Transportation; Larry Wooten, N.C. Farm Bureau Federation; David Rouzer, office of Sen. Jesse Helms; and U.S. Rep. Bob Etheridge.
Chancellor Fox presented plaques to Fike, Costner-Parker and Perry commemorating their efforts in the CALS Campaign for N.C. State Students. "As with any great effort, there are always those that step forward to get the job done," Fox said. "These individuals have not only led by example, but they have given by example as well."
Fike recognized the campaign committee and Costner-Parker led the recognition of the campaign donors. Then Perry (whose "commitment of $1.5 million put our campaign over the top," Oblinger said) came forward to make the campaign’s grand total announcement.
"We should keep in mind that this campaign began with a goal of $5 million, then it went to $7 million and finally ended up at $15.45 million," Perry said. "I don’t believe anyone involved in this campaign from the beginning ever thought in their wildest dreams that it would be this successful." Perry then revealed just how successful it was — the CALS Campaign had reached more than $18.5 million. (At press time, the amount had climbed to $19.3 million.)
Dr. George Barthalmus, associate dean and director of Academic Programs, told the audience that "the positive effects of this campaign are already taking place in the College" and announced that during this academic year, the College will award $610,000 to 550 undergraduate student recipients and more than $400,000 to 50 graduate students.
Fox then directed attention to another special honoree, Bob Jenkins. "I am pleased to join you today in recognizing and thanking someone who, reading from his list of accomplishments, must be one of a kind," she said.
In addition to serving as president of the N.C. Farm Bureau Federation, Jenkins has chaired or co-chaired the CALS Campaign for N.C. State Students, the Dean Durward Bateman Scholarship Campaign, the Commissioner James A. Graham Campaign and the Eastern North Carolina 4-H Environmental Education Center Campaign.
A video tribute to Jenkins was followed by the announcement that, with a lead gift of $50,000 by the N.C. Farm Bureau Federation Board of Directors, the commitments to the Jenkins Scholarship Endowment had reached $175,000, with more coming in. The Bob Jenkins Scholarship was created in Jenkins’ honor to enable students from farms in rural North Carolina to major in agriculture at N.C. State. The inaugural scholarship recipients, students Jennifer Stamey and Robbie Upton, were introduced at the celebration.