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LPS Grad Credits C3 Program and Faculty Support for Degree Completion

Headshot of Vivian Slade
Vivian Slade

Written by Helen Velk.

When Vivian Slade was a student at Durham Technical Community College, she discovered the Community College Collaboration (C3) program. She decided to join the C3 program because she always loved NC State and wanted to earn a bachelor’s degree. She had to be extremely organized to accomplish her goal of graduating from the Leadership in the Public Sector (LPS) program since she had both a full-time and a part-time job — and three kids to take care of at home!

“Strategic planning was key. I keep a planner with me at all times. Although I created a weekly plan at the beginning of each week, I adjusted it as needed on a daily basis,” Slade said. “I drank a LOT of coffee, and I stayed focused on the end goal. I would take each day for what it was, and I tried not to look at all of the requirements at once because that was overwhelming. Taking it literally one day at a time helped me tremendously.”

The C3 program is a transfer experience that offers students the opportunity to begin their educational journey at a community college and transfer to graduate from NC State. Slade originally thought she would major in communications. Her C3 advisor expanded her options by introducing her to the LPS program.

“It aligned with my passions — I am passionate about leadership and I’ve worked in local and state government for the majority of my career. It just simply made sense to major in LPS.

“I would be remiss if I did not talk about the wonderful people in the C3 program. C3 is an amazing partnership and should be noted and celebrated. Program Coordinator Jen Foster and Senior Assistant Director Morgan Middleton, and all of the people in their village, encouraged me to cross the finish line. I’ve been through rough times during my tenure at NC State. My village cared that I made it and they did EVERYTHING possible to help me. My friends and family always tease me about my devotion to NC State and how I am such an advocate for the school. NC State left an imprint in my life that I will cherish and never forget. I definitely want to pay it forward and also support this school in the future. I loved it so much that I am starting grad school here at NC State in January 2024. Go Wolfpack!”

The primary premise of the LPS program is that exercising effective leadership in the public sector has unique features that make leadership more challenging but ultimately more rewarding than leadership in the private sector. The online program allows students to change or advance their careers without adhering to a rigid class schedule. Once she started in the LPS program, Slade found supportive faculty members who assisted her throughout her time at NC State.

“Wow — is the first thing I can say! From my outstanding and amazing advisor LaShica Waters to all of my professors, I have had the best experience,” Slade said. “Dr. Waters really took my hand and guided me through this entire process with grace. I am forever grateful for the time she spent with me. She really helped me establish and reach my goals. I’ve learned things that I could immediately apply to my everyday life and to my career. Tracy Appling‘s classes were extremely impactful to me and I really enjoyed all of them. Dmitri Mitin‘s research class initially scared me. However, he was so very helpful throughout the class. He selflessly participated in many Zoom meetings to talk to me when I needed his help. I know that his attention and empathy made it possible for me to be successful. My professors added value to my life and to my career.”

Slade plans to attend the in-person commencement ceremony in December.

“As the old song says, I’ve been waiting for this moment, for all my life! I absolutely plan to attend — it is great for me, but it is equally great for my now college-attending children to see their mom accomplish this goal.”