“I tell people that when you get a car repaired, are admitted to the hospital, enjoy a fine dinner or admire the beauty of a golf course, chances are, a graduate of Sandhills Community College has made that possible,” says Southern Pines statesman Norris Hodgkins, Jr.
The support of fine families in the area, such as the Hodgkins family, has been instrumental to the effectiveness of Sandhills Community College in producing skilled and educated graduates. Norris Hodgkins, Jr. continues the tradition of support established by his father. Both father and son have served on the Board of Trustees at Sandhills; in fact, the elder Mr. Hodgkins served as one the charter trustees.
“My father was favorably impressed with Raymond Stone, Sandhills’ first president, and glad to be a part of the beginnings of this new school,” his son says. “I had been on a committee to get St. Andrews here and when that failed, Governor Sanford commissioned a study that resulted in new community colleges in the state. Senator Bill Saunders and Bob Ewing headed up the bond drive and it passed by an incredible margin of seven to one. That shows you how much people believed in the need for strong community colleges.”
Mr. Hodgkins, often called the Patriarch of the Pines, knows quite a bit of Sandhills history, including how The Citizens Bank and Trust Company, where he served as executive vice-president, had a revolving fund for college loans for residents of Moore County. This program was eventually turned over to the Sandhills Community College Foundation and is now a scholarship program.
“Sandhills Community College is a wonderful contributor to our local economy,” he points out. “The school has good leadership, strong faculty and staff and the Sandhills Community College Foundation to ensure that the school continues its mission.”
-Original Source “50/50” 2012