Director, Marketing & Public Relations
(864) 592-4931 or (864) 494-6679 (cell)
For Immediate Release
October 1, 2010
Spartanburg, S.C. – Spartanburg Community College (SCC) honored Senator Harvey S. Peeler, Jr. on Wednesday, September 29 for his support of Spartanburg Community College’s Cherokee County Campus at a naming dedication of the Harvey S. Peeler, Jr. Academic Building.
“Senator Peeler is a champion of higher education and economic development. Everyone knows that economic development doesn’t happen without quality education and workforce training. That is the driving force of this campus,” said Mike Forrester, director of SCC’s economic development and interim director of the SCC’s corporate and community education division.
Gary Towery, chairman of the Spartanburg County Commission for Technical and Community Education, presented Senator Peeler with a resolution on behalf of the Commission and the College. “The Cherokee County Campus has a tremendous impact on this community and a large part of that can be attributed to Senator Peeler’s involvement in the establishment of the campus,” said Towery.
A native of Cherokee County, Senator Peeler was instrumental in establishing the SCC Cherokee County Campus and he continues to be an avid supporter of the College today. SCC’s dedication honors the Senator’s unwavering commitment to education and the economic development of his Upstate community over the years, as well as his many contributions to the state of S.C. throughout his tenure. He has served the people of Cherokee, Spartanburg, Union and York Counties for the past 34 years as a member of the Cherokee County Council and the S.C. Senate, District 14. He has held the position of the S.C. Senate Majority Leader since 2005.
“This honor today has a very special meaning for me. For you to place my name on an academic building, the words ‘Thank You’ just don’t seem strong enough. But from the bottom of my heart, thank you,” said Senator Peeler. “The ‘Field of Dreams’ attitude of ‘If you build it, they will come’ turned out to be an education and economic development bonanza for our county.”
“Senator Peeler is an important member of the SCC family,” said Dr. Para M. Jones, SCC’s president. “The Peeler name is known for dairy and politics, but we also associate this name with a man who is a tireless advocate for education. To commemorate the impact Senator Peeler has had on students, the College and the economic impact in Cherokee County, it’s fitting that we dedicate the Cherokee County Campus Academic Building in his honor. This facility and campus represent the educational legacy of Senator Peeler and his entire family. The Harvey S. Peeler, Jr. Academic Building will change lives and build futures for many SCC students in years to come.”
Perhaps no one could attest to the benefit of the Cherokee County Campus better than Johnica Ortiz, a Cherokee County resident and 2007 Gaffney High School graduate, who shared her personal story on what the campus means to her as a local resident attending college. “As a nursing student, I am grateful that the campus is close to my home. The Cherokee Campus has given me access to resources like the library and computer labs, “ said Ortiz. “It’s very convenient to take my core classes without having to commute.” Ortiz is a true advocate for the campus as she has just been named the new student ambassador representing the Cherokee County Campus at community and college events.
SCC’s Cherokee County Campus opened its doors in August 2007 and has averaged 700 students for the previous two fall semesters. Approximately 35 percent of the students taking classes at this campus are health science majors, 22 percent are University Transfer majors and 10 percent are business majors. “That speaks well for what this campus has meant and will continue to mean for the citizens of Cherokee County in the future,” said Mr. Forrester. “Senator Harvey Peeler played a key role in the development of this campus through his leadership in the S.C. Senate and his reputation as a dedicated public servant and a friend of SCC.”
Event photos and captions are available for download at: