CHS June 5 graduation plans announced

Published 10:40 am Friday, June 5, 2020

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Columbia Early College High School will hold a drive-thru graduation ceremony at 5:30 p.m. on Friday, June 5, on the high school campus, Superintendent Oliver Holley announced last Thursday.

Guest speaker will be North Carolina State Treasurer Dale R. Folwell.

Attendance will be limited to the immediate family members of the graduates-elect.

Principal Bill Ziegler released the following descriptive statement last Tuesday:

COVID-19 has turned the world upside down, many things we take for granted are different and unfortunately this holds true for this year’s CHS graduation.

Instead of the traditional ceremony, CHS will hold a “drive through graduation” program. Although quite a bit smaller and limited to just immediate family, the ceremony will celebrate the students for their achievement and provide the students an opportunity to be close to those that mean the most and have supported them throughout their educational journey.

It is incredibly important that each CHS graduate has their moment of being handed their diploma — they have earned at least that!

Beyond planning to ensure that CHS holds a safe ceremony that falls within the parameters mandated by the state, CHS has worked to ensure that the seniors are honored in new and different ways too:

– CHS has spotlighted a “Senior of the Day” on social media (Facebook, Twitter)

– worked with Ambrose Signs in Camden to design and place the billboard located at Tyrrell Hall

– ordered and placed yard signs in the yards of graduating seniors (Thursday)

– placed a banner on the high school main building congratulating our seniors

– implemented an “Adopt-A-Senior” program

– for the first time, CHS will live-stream graduation for everyone to watch from the safety of their home

– each graduating senior will have a 3×4 vinyl sign of their formal graduation picture posted in town

No one expected to have the school year end so abruptly or for the quarantine to go on as long as it has; however, the steps Tyrrell County Schools has taken to make sure our graduates are applauded and recognized shows how our community comes together and cares for one another.

Treasurer Folwell

Dale R. Folwell, CPA, was sworn in as State Treasurer of North Carolina in January 2017. As the keeper of the public purse, he is responsible for a $100 billion state pension fund that provides retirement benefits for more than 900,000 teachers, law enforcement officers and other public workers.

In 2018 the state’s coveted AAA bond rating was reaffirmed by every major rating agency, making North Carolina one of only 13 states in the country to hold that distinction.

Folwell also oversees the State Health Plan, which provides medical and pharmaceutical benefits to more than 720,000 current and retired public employees and is the largest purchaser of health care in North Carolina.


Folwell was first elected to the North Carolina General Assembly in 2004, where he served four terms in the House of Representatives including one term as Speaker Pro Tempore.

Folwell became a Certified Public Accountant and investment advisor after earning Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees in accounting from UNC-Greensboro. Married for 30 years, he and his wife Synthia have three children and live in Winston-Salem.