Robeson Cooperative Extension Advisory Council Tours
N.C. State University
By Mark S. Moses
Robeson County Advisory Council Member
First stop on the arranged tour was the North Carolina Solar House. What intrigued advisory members so much about the N.C. Solar House is that it is completely run by light energy by using solar panels. The house uses light energy to make electricity that helps run the light fixtures and even the hot water heater in the basement area of the home. Carole Coble, manager and information specialist, gave the guided tour of the house. She answered many questions and gave very scientific answers on how solar energy is used economically today and how area students learn about this unique source of energy from the sun.
“I found everything about our trip to the solar house very unique, and I’m hoping one day we can return and learn some more pointers about it,” said Mr. Wilkes, a small business owner from Orrum. “I would like to see the people who are on our local school board come up and look at the solar house and get some ideas of what the school children here in Raleigh are doing with solar energy and help spur the curiosity of the kids in our county.”
Next on the stop was a buffet lunch at the University Club where they were greeted by Clinton McRae, South Central District Extension director; Sheri Schwab, associate director of Cooperative Extension; and Sharon Runion Rowland, executive director of development for Cooperative Extension.
While enjoying the delightful delectable, Ms. Rowland gave a brief talk about the N.C. Cooperative Extension Service Foundation and how funds are benefiting over 700 causes in all 100 of North Carolina’s counties. According to a letter found in the Foundation’s newsletter, the North Carolina Cooperative Extension Service Foundation continues to engage prospects, donors, volunteers, and staff with the goal of supporting Cooperative Extension initiatives at the county, district, and state levels.
Before leaving the club, the group was invited back during the hot afternoon to cool down with some N.C. State homemade ice cream, made with real milk from cows milked at the university’s College of Veterinary Medicine, the next stop on the tour.
Established in 1978, the North Carolina State University College of Veterinary Medicine had a stated 700 applications, this year, for only 80 spots. Students learn by performing surgeries, general care of animals, and clinicals on the school’s working farm. They have the opportunity for hands-on learning by actually milking cows. The college, one of the finest veterinary programs in the country, also has research and teaching facilities, fields for larger livestock, and an on-site teaching hospital.
“It’s good to know we have students there interested in animal health care and that they have so many applying,” said Ms. Peay, 4-H program representative. “I plan to go back to Robeson County and share this experience with my 4-H’ers.”