Educational Opportunity Center opens at new location

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The Educational Opportunity Center (EOC), a federally-funded program hosted by Piedmont Community College (PCC), celebrated its relocation to a new site with a ribbon-cutting ceremony and open house on Tuesday, April 10. The EOC is now located at 204 W. Barden Street, Roxboro, in the former Person Counseling Center building. The building is owned by Person County and has been made available for the EOC through a partnership between the Person County Commissioners and PCC. After remarks by EOC staff member Linda Crisp, EOC Director Carolyn Funderburk, Person County Manager Heidi York, PCC President Dr. Walter Bartlett, Person County Commissioner Jimmy Clayton, PCC Vice President Mike Dossett, and PCC Dean, Student Development Lee Proctor, the group gathered to cut the ribbon on the remodeled facility, followed by tours of the building and refreshments.

Dr. Barlett praised everyone involved in making the new location possible, particularly Person County Commissioners who provided the building. He said PCC Maintenance staff completed the remodeling, including installing new carpeting and interior doors as well as exterior roof flashing. EOC joined in the work to clean, paint and decorate, creating a warm and inviting space to serve local EOC clients. County Manager York joked that she wasn’t allowed to visit lest she want to “take the building back.” Clayton, who had an office in the building when he worked for the Person County Health Department, said it was good to see an old building get new life and be used for a worthwhile purpose.

Funderburk explained that the EOC serves 11 counties, including Person County and Caswell County, and forms partnerships with organizations in these counties. The program helps people who desire to further their education by earning a GED, attending college or a trade school. The EOC provides workshops and academic materials and assists prospective students with college admissions and with the submission of the Free Federal Student Aid Application. All services are offered at no charge to EOC clients.

Funderburk said the EOC will begin a new program called “Military Monday,” providing services for veterans, persons on active military duty, their spouses and children. A veterans’ services officer also will establish office hours at the EOC. PCC receives $2.9 million through a TRiO Educational Opportunity Center grant to provide the counseling and information program in Person County and 10 other area counties. The highly-competitive grant award was announced last fall and ext through Thursdays, and from 8 a.m.-4 p.m. Fridays. For more information on available services, call (336) 599-0257 or (800)682-1159 or go to www2.piedmontcc.edu/EOC. The local EOC serves individuals in Alamance, Caswell, Chatham, Durham, Franklin, Granville, Orange, Person, Rockingham, Vance and Warren counties.  


Pictured from left are Linda Crisp, EOC Outreach Counselor/Project Coordinator; Dr. Walter Bartlett, PCC President; Heidi York, Person County Manager; Carolyn Funderburk, EOC Director; Jimmy Clayton, Person County Commissioners Chairman; Lee Proctor, PCC Dean, Student Development; and Mike Dossett, PCC Vice President, Instruction and Student Development.