College of Textiles Category
The faculty and administration at the College of Textiles were not eager to be pioneers on Centennial Campus. They voted unanimously in 1987 against the college moving from Nelson Hall and David Clark Labs on the main campus to the new campus that was still more imagined than real.
Nonetheless, it was on this day in 1988 that the ground was officially broken for a new home for the College of Textiles on Centennial Campus. The 300,000-foot square foot facility, which was actually to be four interconnected buildings, was expected to cost $30 million to build and equip. Over 175 people turned out for the groundbreaking.
“If this $30 million investment says anything, it says the textiles industry is a number one priority at North Carolina State University,” then-Chancellor Bruce Poulton said at the groundbreaking, according to an account in the Technician. “This building is really symbolic of our constant commitment to have the best College of Textiles in the free world.”
The new College of Textiles complex was dedicated in 1991.
Kyle Blakely loves his job at Under Armour. It helps that he finds himself surrounded by other graduates of NC State.
At least 17 NC State alumni work at the Baltimore headquarters of the sporting apparel company, according to Blakely. “It’s a lot for a small company,” says Blakely, who graduated from NC State in 2007 with a textiles degree.
Blakely, director of material development, works with a team to develop and engineer textiles that Under Armour uses for their athletic wear. “We’re engineering the fabrics that go into garments,” he says. “Part of that is working with our mill partners and the other part is working with design partners here.”
The view from Kyle Blakely's desk at Under Armour
Blakely attributes the large number of employees at Under Armour from NC State to the education that the university provides. “Most of us are from College of Textiles,” he says. “But, one is from sports marketing – that’s a big deal. I think there are a few with engineering degrees, but it’s mostly textiles. We do have other fields present and we even have a few from UNC. Most of them majored in finance.”
It’s nice to have so many colleagues who share his Wolfpack background, Blakely says. “Baltimore – it’s a great city, but we’re from North Carolina,” he says. “Anyone from North Carolina that has lived there for an extended period has an understanding about how great it is down South. It’s nice to have people here that understand your culture and your background.”
Blakely and his coworkers have filled their walls with NC State paraphernalia. “I have an NC State jersey on the wall,” he says. “It’s everywhere. You can tell NC State people because we have it all over our desks. Everybody displays their NC State stuff with a lot of pride.”
In addition to hiring so many NC State graduates, Under Armour has developed a more formal partnership with the university. “We have a great working professional relationship with NC State,” says Blakely. “We show some of our designers our school, show them the textiles machine. We take proofs to NC State and (the designers) have a whole new perspective. It’s beyond just us working here.”
The success that Blakely and his NC State colleagues have enjoyed at Under Armour, he says, undercuts any suggestion that a degree in textiles is not useful in today’s economy. “While the manufacturing side isn’t as heavy as it used to be, there are still mills in this hemisphere and they are thriving,” he says. “There are many job opportunities and brands (in textiles) … In all reality, there is more opportunity than ever, especially since we’re specialized and there are not a lot of us (textile majors).”
Blakely says his textiles degree has worked well for him. “When I came into textiles, people were like are you kidding me?” he says. “I couldn’t be happier. I have the coolest job on the planet.”
The Alumni Association is honoring 21 NC State professors with the 2013 Faculty Awards for their outstanding work in the classroom, in the laboratory and in the field. We talked (via email) with some of the recipients about their work and the keys to being a successful professor.
Today we’re visiting with Keith Beck, a professor of textile engineering, chemistry and science in the College of Textiles. Beck is one of six professors being recognized as Alumni Association Distinguished Undergraduate Professors.
What prompted you to become a professor? In my early days as a graduate student in the Purdue University chemistry department, my assistantship required that I teach organic chemistry labs. Through those opportunities to learn and practice the art of teaching, it became apparent that I really enjoyed, not only the generation of knowledge, but also sharing it with others, especially in the hands-on laboratory part of chemistry. When my research adviser would need to be out of town on business, he gave me the opportunity to lecture about organic chemistry to 260 undergraduate chemistry and chemical engineering students. Those days of large blackboards and chalk have morphed into our technologically advanced classrooms and all the resources of the internet, but after 43 years in the classroom and laboratory, my joy of sharing knowledge with students is still strong.
What are the keys to being a successful teacher/professor? My teaching philosophy has always been centered on expectations. If you expect only a little from students, it is highly likely that they will achieve at that level. At the beginning of each course, I explain my expectations to the students, including a lengthy interactive discourse on the importance of academic integrity. Secondly, timing is very important. In the real world, expectations are that people will be prompt for meetings and with project responsibilities. One of my goals is to always start and finish classes and labs on time, so that the students can attend to their other responsibilities. I also return homework, lab reports and exams in the next class meeting so that students can receive rapid feedback on their performance. Finally, it is important that, through your actions, students sense that you care about their education and future. Because my classes are typically small (15-40 students), I learn the student’s names during the first week, so that I can call on them by name. Students will be more motivated to work hard if their instructors demonstrate concern for their future and a willingness to get to know them.
What gives you the greatest satisfaction as a professor? My greatest satisfaction is generated in observing the “aha” response that students exhibit when they finally understand something or they do well on an exam or a chemistry experiment gives them results that they can understand and explain. Having a small part in the process that generates that response is very rewarding. I still enjoy that experience in the lab when experiments produce new information about textile materials with which I am working. Also extremely satisfying is the interaction with former students who are doing well and relate some of that success back to their educational experience at NC State.
Bryan Jones (left) and Hootie Bowman (right)
Bryan Jones never thought he would be a writer.
“I can’t even spell,” Jones says. “I’m atrocious at grammar.”
But 14 years after graduating NC State with a degree in political science, Jones finds himself creating children’s books with Hootie Bowman, who graduated from NC State with a textiles degree in 1997.
The die-hard Wolfpackers Jones and Bowman are the creators of Collegiate Kids Books, a company based in Hickory, N.C. It started with the idea that avid sports fans can be cultivated at a very early age.
The college-themed books are available at university bookstores and at on-campus sports venues. Lauren Jones holds one at the Carter-Finley Stadium store shown here.
Go … Wolfpack … Go! is just one book in the collection. Currently, there are five books in the collection, but Jones plans on expanding. The books are interactive, with scratch-and-sniff items and textures for children to feel. They are tailored to include the landmarks, mascots and well-known establishments of beloved ACC schools.
There’s even one for UNC-Chapel Hill, which wasn’t easy to write, Jones says, even though his mother and wife both went there.
“I still feel like I need to go wash my hands,” Jones says. “It was a little difficult. But really, I want Carolina kids to grow up to be passionate Carolina fans and hate State. I want them to be just as passionate about beating State as we are about beating Carolina.”
Jones was inspired with the idea for the books when his daughter Lauren was born. He was looking for good books to read her before bed. He read books like the N.C. State-centric Hello, Mr. Wuf, by Aimee Aryal and Pat the Bunny, a touch-and-feel book, and realized he could fuse the State themes of the one with the interactive qualities of the other to create his own concept.
“You want your child to love NC State,” says Jones. “I thought I could combine those ideas.”
So he did. Now, Jones and Bowman’s book collection is steadily growing to expand into other conferences besides the ACC.
“We’re coming out with South Carolina, Tennessee, Alabama, Auburn and Clemson maybe as early as March,” says Jones, who adds that the company will eventually produce books about professional teams and even smaller schools. “We’re also going to do the military and Harley-Davidson. We want to do it if there’s a passionate group of people that want to pass that on to a younger generation.”
Now the father of two girls and one boy on the way, Jones hopes to take advantage of his product to get his children invested in the Wolfpack. If they like any other school, he’ll attribute it to a job well done.
“If they like UNC better, maybe I did my job too well with the Tar Heel book,” says Jones. “But, having both of these books kind of negates for one of them to sway (my children) to the other side.”
NC State University, the Wolfpack Club and the Alumni Association will recognize some of NC State’s greatest stars tonight at Prestonwood Country Club in Cary, N.C., honoring 18 alumni and friends of the university for their professional and personal accomplishments and their continuing support of NC State, the Wolfpack Club and the Alumni Association.
The honorees at the 9th Annual NC State Evening of Stars are:
COLLEGE DISTINGUISHED AWARD RECIPIENTS
Tommy Bunn ‘66, College of Agriculture and Life Sciences: Bunn, president of the U.S. Tobacco Cooperative, has spent more than 45 years in the tobacco industry. He got his start growing tobacco on his family farm, then went on to work for 21 years as executive vice president of the Leaf Tobacco Exporters Association and the Tobacco Association of the United States. He also worked in the U.S. Department of Agriculture and the N.C. Department of Agriculture, and was a charter member and chairman of the Golden Leaf Foundation Board of Directors.
Charlie Stuber ‘65 PhD, College of Agriculture and Life Sciences: For more than 35 years, Stuber held a joint appointment as a genetics professor at NC State and a research geneticist with the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Agricultural Research Service. Stuber then came out of retirement to return to NC State in 2006 to develop and direct the Center for Plant Breeding and Applied Plant Genomics. The USDA Agricultural Research Service named him the Outstanding Scientist of the Year in 1989 and inducted Stuber into their Science Hall of Fame in 1989.
Steven Schuster ‘73, College of Design: Schuster is the founding principal of Clearscapes, a full-service architectural design firm in Raleigh. Under Schuster’s leadership, Clearscapes has been recognized with more than 75 design awards and worked on such notable projects as the Marbles Kids Museum in Raleigh, the Haw River Ball Room, the Raleigh Convention Center and the Contemporary Art Museum. Schuster is also a national leader in the historic preservation community. He serves on the Board of Visitors at NC State.
Robert Bridges ‘70 MED, College of Education: Bridges taught sixth grade and then high school in Wake County before becoming principal at Crosby-Garfield Elementary School. He then went on to work in Wake County’s central office as a director, assistant superintendent and deputy superintendent before becoming the superintendent in 1984. After five years leading the state’s second largest public school system, Bridges went on to become provost at St. Augustine College in Raleigh, and then worked as an education and management consultant and chaired the N.C. Advisory Commission on Raising Achievement and Closing Gaps.
Stephen Angel, ‘77, College of Engineering: Angel is chair, president and CEO of Praxair, Inc., a Fortune 300 company that ranks as the largest industrial gases producer and distributor in North and South America, with sales of $11 billion in 2011. Before joining Praxair, Angel spent more than two decades at GE, most recently as general manager of the company’s $2 billion power equipment business. He serves on the board of directors of the U.S.-China Business Council and PPG Industries, and is a member of the Business Roundtable, the Business Council and the U.S.-Brazil Forum.
Jimmy Clark ‘74, College of Engineering: Clark is the owner and president of Guy M. Turner, Inc., a diversified company that is a leader in the handling and moving of the heaviest equipment in the fields of rigging, machine tool installation, crane services and specialized transportation. The company has 12 offices in the United States and Canada. Clark serves on the NC State Board of Trustees, as well as on the board of directors for the NC State Alumni Association and the Engineering Foundation. He previously chaired the NC State Board of Visitors.
John Edmond ‘87, College of Engineering: While earning his PhD in material sciences and engineering, Edmond teamed with other graduate students and young faculty on some promising silicon carbide research. Upon graduation, the group co-founded what became CREE Inc., one of the world’s top LED manufacturers. Today, Edmond is director of advanced optoelectronics for the Durham-based company, which makes energy-efficient LED lights, lighting components and semiconductor products.
Susan Warren Rabon ‘82, College of Humanities and Social Sciences: Rabon is a member of the N.C. Utilities Commission, which regulates the rates and services of all of the state’s public utilities. Rabon, who received her law degree from the University of Virginia, has also worked as a clerk in the N.C. Court of Appeals, as special counsel and then chief of staff for the N.C. Department of Justice, and senior assistant for administration in the office of the governor. She has previously served on the NC State Board of Visitors.
Kevin Beasley ‘79, Poole College of Management: Beasley, a CPA, is a partner-in-charge of tax practice at the Raleigh office of Grant Thornton, one of the Big Six international accounting firms. He previously worked at Arthur Anderson, where he rose to the position of partner and earned a spot in the inaugural class of the NC State Accounting Hall of Fame.
Ray Tanner ‘80, College of Natural Resources: Tanner, a former All-ACC baseball player at NC State, was named athletics director for the University of South Carolina last year after spending 25 years as a collegiate head baseball coach, including nine years as the head coach at NC State. Under Tanner’s direction, the baseball team at South Carolina won two NCAA Division I Baseball Championships and made six appearances in the College World Series. Tanner has been named National Coach of the Year three times.
Sung Won Lee, ‘60 MS, ‘67 PhD, College of Physical and Mathematical Sciences: After earning his graduate degrees at NC State, Lee returned to his native South Korea to lead the S-Oil Corporation to success as the third largest oil refinery in Korea. He also served as chairman of two South Korean chemical companies. But his passion is downhill skiing, and his family built Korea’s oldest and largest ski and snowboard resort, which will host alpine skiing events for the 2018 Winter Olympics and 2018 Winter Paralympics. Lee is founder and president of the Asian Ski Federation, former vice president of the Olympic Council of Asia and honorary president of the Korean Ski Association.
Michael Fralix ‘00 PhD, College of Textiles: Fralix is the president and CEO of [TC]2, a company that develops next generation supply chain technologies such as 3-D body scanners used in product development for apparel and equipment, made-to-measure clothing, clothing size and style recommendations and body shape analysis.
Dr. Laura Rush ‘97 DVM, College of Veterinary Medicine: Rush began her career as a registered nurse, specializing in the care of cancer patients, before going to vet school. Following graduation, she joined the faculty at The Ohio State University College of Veterinary Medicine and headed a laboratory funded by the National Institute of Health that focused on cancer research in dogs and humans. Rush now works as vice president and associate medical director for GSW Worldwide, a healthcare marketing firm where she helps develop marketing strategies for healthcare companies.
WOLFPACK CLUB AWARD
Nora Lynn Finch, Ronnie Shavlik Award: Finch was a pioneer for collegiate women’s athletics, serving as the ACC’s first female assistant athletics director and negotiated the first women’s basketball tournament television contract with CBS. At NC State, Finch served as head volleyball and softball coach, associate head coach for women’s basketball, and assistant, associate and senior associate athletics director. She is currently the ACC’s associate commissioner for women’s basketball operations and senior women’s administrator. She has been inducted into the National Women’s Sports Hall of Fame.
ALUMNI ASSOCIATION AWARDS
Ryan DeJong ‘05, Outstanding Young Alumnus: DeJong, chief operating officer of FIRM Consulting Group, has led the Tampa NC State Alumni Network since 2007. As network leader, DeJong has aggressively promoted his alma mater and the Alumni Association. He recruits and manages volunteers to staff local college fairs and plans many types of group activities for his fellow Tampa Wolfpackers.
Sherice Nivens ‘98, Outstanding Young Alumnus: Nivens, cardiac sales manager for Intuitive Surgical, is a member of the PAMS Alumni and Friends Advisory Board and a founding member of the Dean’s Circle. She served as the keynote speaker for the 2009 Department of Chemistry graduation ceremony and the 2010 Society of African American Physical and Mathematical Scientists annual banquet.
Bill Collins ‘54, ‘61 MS, Meritorious Service Award: Collins, a world renowned expert in tobacco field production, was a Philip Morris Professor in the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences for 28 years. Since retiring in 2005, Collins joined the CALS Office of College Advancement as senior director of development. He is a former member of the board of directors of the Alumni Association.
Judi Grainger ‘72 MS, Meritorious Service Award: Grainger served as president of the Alumni Association board of directors in 2011 and served for a total of 14 years on the board. She also serves on the NC State Board of Visitors, the College of Education Advisory Board and the board of directors of The State Club.
Much of what goes on during Homecoming week is about having fun — concerts, contests and parades.
But NC State is also committed to service, so it should be no surprise that Homecoming week includes events such as a blood drive and a clean-up of Hillsborough Street.
And, today, a canned food drive culminated with several student organizations — from fraternities and sororities to college councils — bringing the cans they had collected to the Brickyard. There, student ambassadors for the Alumni Association helped collect thousands of cans that will be donated to the Food Bank of Central & Eastern North Carolina.
The collection got started around noon with more than 1,000 cans donated by students in the College of Textiles. “It’s a great cause,” said Carl Santos, a junior from Wake Forest, N.C., who is president of the Tomkpkins Textile Student Council, which organized the college’s effort. “With the hurricane, there are going to be a lot of people in need of food.”
Christopher Lawing, a sophomore from Charlotte, N.C., helped organize the canned food drive as part of a week-long Homecoming Spirit competition that included a craziest fan contest, a cupcake contest and a banner contest. Lawing is a student ambassador with the Alumni Association, which stages most of the events during Homecoming week.
“Last year, we collected 11,000 cans,” Lawing said. “I would love to beat that this year.”
They appeared to be well on their way as the cans piled up through the afternoon. One fraternity brought more than 3,000 cans for the drive.
THE CANNED FOOD DRIVE BEGINS: Carl Santos delivers cans collected by students at the College of Textiles
THE CANNED FOOD DRIVE NEARS THE END: Christopher Lawing tosses more cans onto the growing pile
From fire protection to canines to foreign languages, NC State’s researchers and professors bring a range of expertise in their efforts to help the nation’s military.
“The work that research universities do to support our military has never been more important,” Chancellor Randy Woodson said at the opening this afternoon of the university’s Military Appreciation Day program at the Park Alumni Center. The events are part of the university’s yearlong celebration of NC State’s 125th anniversary.
ROTC cadets help NC State celebrate its 125th anniversary
Terri Lomax, vice chancellor for research and innovation, said the university is home to partnerships between the Department of Defense and the USDA that offer programs to military kids, including camps for children and financial advice for families.
And with a photo of Gen. Custer and his favorite companion animal on a screen behind her, Lomax noted that dogs have long had a place in the military. Today, the College of Veterinary Medicine is working with the government to select the breeds that can best be trained to detect IEDs and to identify the most accurate training methods.
For the Navy, NC State researchers are developing a “wrinkled surface” that can be applied to the sides of ships to prevent barnacles from attaching — saving fuel and cleaning costs, Lomax said.
And at the College of Textiles, researchers continue to use PyroMan, a full-size simulated model that helps textile engineers determine what kind of fibers best protect the human body from heat and flame.
“We can show where second- and third-degree burns are likely to develop,” said Roger Barker, the Burlington Chair in Textile Technology and director of the Textiles Protection and Comfort Center (T-PACC).
The college has also developed another set of models — PyroHand and PyroHead — to help researchers understand the effect of radiant thermal energy from IEDs on extremities.
Plans are in the works, he said, to develop a “dynamic” version of PyroMan that moves so that the effects of fire can be simulated in motion.
“Our mission is to serve and protect the men and women who serve in our military, and for that we are very grateful,” Barker said.
In addition to technical research, the university’s foreign language department is contributing to partnerships with the military. ROTC students are being given the opportunity to learn “critical language skills” in Arabic, Chinese, Russian, and Urdu, said Dwight Stephens, director of the Integrated Research Learning Initiative. The training is designed to help the students understand other cultures and become “warrior-diplomats” who can participate in conflict resolution, he said.
Speaking of NC State’s history of military leadership, Woodson noted that the university counts more than 60 admirals and generals among its alumni — just behind the service academies and The Citadel and Virginia Military Institute.
Michael Steer receiving his award in 2010.
Michael Steer, the Lampe Distinguished Professor in the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering, received the U.S. Army Commander’s Award for Public Service in 2010 for research that has helped U.S. forces detect and counter roadside bombs. Those efforts have saved hundreds of soldiers’ lives in Iraq and Afghanistan.
Steer is one of many presenters who will discuss NC State’s role in military advancements this Friday at NC State’s 125th Anniversary Military Appreciation event.
Steer began his research by planning to illuminate electronic communications devices like mobile phones with electromagnetic energy and remotely measuring the responses. Those responses informed him about the devices’ components and circuits, giving him better idea of how they worked.
The Army funded Steer’s research so he could extend his application to electronic warfare and explosive devices like roadside bombs that have killed U.S. soldiers in Iraq and Afghanistan. That work enabled Army officials to learn how those explosive devices worked.
“I’m really glad that all that hard work made a difference,” Steer says of his research. “I do remember the day back in early 2005 when someone called me up and told me about the effect the research was having.”
Dan McNeill, a retired four-star general in the U.S. Army.
Steer will join other presenters who will talk about diverse research involving engineering, textiles and education that is affecting American military daily. When the research portion of the program concludes, NC State will welcome military leaders to speak at a panel discussion about the university’s legacy of leadership. That talk will include an overview of NC State’s ROTC program, and comments by retired Gen. Dan McNeill ‘68, who led coalition forces in Afghanistan.
The event is for university officials and will begin at 1 p.m. on Friday. There will be a reception afterward to conclude the afternoon. And the Wolfpack’s game against the Citadel on Saturday will mark Military Appreciation Day for the university.
Steer says NC State research that is geared toward the military reinforces the institution’s land-grant mission.
“The thing that really stands out is how the administration, the faculty and the staff are proud that we’re a part of this,” he says. “At many universities, they wouldn’t bat an eye. But we’ve all bought into that. And we do research that affects real people.”
Twelve years after graduating from NC State with a degree in textile technology, Perla Segovia ’00 has pushed the limits of art and design, using her skills to weave far more than textiles. Segovia, an artist based in eastern North Carolina, experiments with woven and fused glass to create pieces inspired by everyday life, her travels and nature.
“I took a workshop in Missouri that taught me how to weave glass,” Segovia says. “I’d never seen woven glass before. It opened up a whole new world for me.”
After graduating from NC State, Segovia lived in Italy for three years while earning a degree in pattern making. She launched her career as an artist by designing jewelry, shoes and handbags, but soon after discovered her passion for working with glass. The material has been the centerpiece of Segovia’s collection ever since.
While Segovia grew up in Peru, only moving to the United States when she was 10 years old, she didn’t return to South America until after college.
“The landscape in Peru is all so different,” Segovia says. “I went to the Amazon, the Andes, the jungle and rainforest, and the mountains. That’s inspired me a lot with design and choice of colors and textures.”
Drawn to the colors and themes in nature, Segovia even seeks out inspiration in her backyard. “I love insects. Right now there are two spiders outside my window and I keep staring at them all day,” she says. “They have beautiful colors.”
Beyond its design, Segovia’s artwork also seeks to convey a deeper message. In one of her most recent pieces — and one she is particularly proud of — Segovia created a pair of rocking chairs from woven glass, which she says is more of a social reflection. “The smaller one is representative of a child and the larger one of a mother,” Segovia says. “It’s about how we’re predisposed to prejudice. It represents how fragile we are as children and how anything will influence [us].”
Segovia says she enjoys working primarily with glass, as well as the reason it conveys her inspiration so well, is because it’s an unpredictable material.
“My art is spontaneous, so I just start playing and experimenting,” she says. “When you fuse two colors together, there’s always chemical reactions that create new colors – that’s what I love about glass.” However, Segovia also draws from her textile background at NC State, interweaving glass and fabric in some of her pieces.
Yet the greatest joy Segovia gets out of her artwork comes not from its creation, but rather from the responses she receives. “When somebody says they’re curious about it and they want to ask questions about how I did my work, I love that,” Segovia says. “I love when someone says ‘Oh, I want to try that!’ That’s my happiest moment right there.”
The satisfaction that Segovia feels when her artwork has inspired someone else has translated into a teaching position at Cape Fear Community College, where she instructs a continuing education course in fusing glass.
“A lot of these people have nine-to-five jobs and their only outlet is to come home and watch TV, so this is a nice change,” she says. “The only thing you’ll care about is what you’ve got your hands on. It’s like therapy to get away from the world.”
– Jamie Gnazzo
It took the Board of Trustees 12 years to bring up the issue of female students after the North Carolina College of Agriculture and Mechanic Arts was founded in 1887. In the summer of 1899, it first debated the issue of admitting women to the all-male college.
According to Alice B. Reagan’s North Carolina State University: A Narrative History, the reason the trustees took up the issue was twofold. First, they believed that the college could offer technical education that wasn’t available elsewhere in the state to women. Secondly, Daniel A. Tompkins, an engineer who became the publisher of The Charlotte Observer, was a strong proponent of women coming to the college, pointing out that many mill employees were women and would benefit from a technical education.
So on July 5, 1899, the trustees voted to allow women to enroll in all college curricula. But a month later, on this day in 1899, the Board of Trustees rescinded the vote and only allowed women to be enrolled only as “special students” in one or two courses. Reagan writes that out of respect to Tompkins, however, the board did allow women to fully enroll to study textiles. (Tompkins Hall, the first textiles building, bears his name.) Two years later, Margaret Burke was the first woman to enroll, taking a physics course.