UNG enrollment grew by  5 percent in fall semester

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DAHLONEGA, Ga. – Officials with the University of North Georgia say 19,722 students are currently enrolled across all their campuses, an increase of 5 percent for the 2018 fall semester.

In a media release from the school it was pointed out that among Georgia’s public colleges and universities, UNG’s percentage increase is the third largest, just behind Middle Georgia State University at 6.3 percent.

“Our increasing enrollment and the demand for our programs reflect UNG’s consistent national recognition as one of the best values in higher education, as well as the commitment of our faculty and staff to educational excellence,” UNG President Bonita C. Jacobs said. “From dual enrollment to graduate programs, UNG is attracting highly qualified and extremely talented students at all levels.”

“While the University System of Georgia continues to see modest increases in enrollment, more students than ever are graduating from our institutions,” University System of Georgia Chancellor Steve Wrigley said. “The number of USG students annually earning degrees is up 21 percent since 2011 when the Complete College Georgia initiative related to college attainment launched. With this success, we remain committed to our goals of making college more affordable and accessible, finding greater opportunities to be more efficient and ensuring more Georgians enter the workforce with a college credential.”

Also, UNG had enrollment increases in graduate programs and the dual-enrollment program, which allows students to earn college credit while in high school.

 

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UNG rolls out inaugural HawkEm 101 Student-Athlete Mentor Program

Community, University of North Georgia

DAHLONEGA, GA

According to a press release by University of North Georgia Athletics, UNG announced that the university has rolled out the HawkEm 101 Student-Athlete Mentor Program, which will give incoming freshman and transfer student-athletes the opportunity to engage and learn from experienced UNG student-athletes.

The athletic administration graduate assistant, Ashley Beaton, stated that, “Not only is HawkEm 101 in place to help promote education on responsible alcohol usage and overall student-athlete wellbeing, but to also encourage cross team collaboration and foster authentic relationships between the student-athletes.” She also points out that, “Shayna (Lawrence), Derrick (Pickvet) and Steven (Bower) have had such a positive impact on this program and they are a big reason why HawkEm 101 has been such a success in its first year. Also, the support from our administration has propelled us to take this initiative and run with it. I really do believe that this program will help enhance the student-athlete experience here at UNG and add to the championship culture we have, not only in athletics but in life.”

HawkEm 101 was inspiredly a group of UNG student-athletes and administrators after they attended the Division II APPLE Training Institute in September 2017 in Reston, Va. UNG baseball player, Steven Bower, explained that, “After having the opportunity to go to the Apple Conference with Sydney (Sprague), Derrick, and Shayna, I realized how much more information there was about drugs and alcohol than we knew about,”

The intent is that the program will not only help educate our new student-athletes about life as a UNG student-athlete, but also foster relationships across all teams and student-athletes.

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Gooch, Tanner Featured Speakers at Eggs and Issues Breakfast

DAHLONEGA, Ga. — The Dahlonega-Lumpkin County Chamber of Commerce and the University of North Georgia did a great job hosting the 2017 Eggs & Issues Legislative Breakfast Friday at UNG’s Continuing Education Center.

State Sen. Steve Gooch (R-Dahlonega) and State Rep. Kevin Tanner (R-Dawsonville) addressed a large, engaged breakfast crowd for about 30 minutes each, then answered questions, primarily related to the upcoming General Assembly that begins next week.

Tanner said the state continues to see month-over-month increases in revenue but added that he has some concerns about lagging sales tax revenue. “We’re concerned bout sales tax revenue because a lot of sales are going to the internet. Were’ also seeing brick and mortar stores like Sears and K-Mart close their doors.”

Tanner also said there is lingering concern about school systems that are failing.

“We all know the governor brought forward legislation last year dealing with Opportunity School Districts that failed at the ballot box. I think about how blessed I am. All my daughters attended schools here in North Georgia where we have good leaders, good educators, good superintendents. But not every child is that blessed. Some children are in schools that fail year after year. Something has to happen.”

He also talked about a school superintendent in Florida that moved a school system of 200,000 students from 50 percent failing to about 80 percent passing. “It’s unbelievable what she has done so we know it can be done.”

Drugs, both legal and illegal, continue to be a serious problem legislators will try to deal with.

“There are new opioid-based drugs coming on line every day,” Tanner said. China has produced a new drug being sold here in Georgia that is not illegal yet, but has produced two fatal overdoses in the last couple of months.

“The opioid issue is something we’re going to deal with on Day 1,” Tanner said.

“The problem is we’re chasing after chemists that continue to change the compound so when we make one drug illegal, they come up with an alternate that isn’t illegal but still has the same deadly effect.”

Gooch pointed out that Georgia has been ranked the No. 1 state in the country to do business by the Site Selection Magazine four years in a row, due primarily to the state’s favorable tax structure.

He also said the state, and in particular north Georgia, is reaping the benefits of having passed the Transportation Funding Act of 2015.

The Georgia Department of Transportation has awarded hundreds of projects designed to improve the state’s infrastructure.

“You’re about to see $600 million spent on Ga. 400 all the way to where it intersects with I-285,” he said. “There will be a northbound and southbound lane added to Ga. 400 from McFarland to Browns Bridge Road. That work should be completed this year. Part of the northbound lane has already been completed and it has made a big difference in the commute time.

“A new interchange is in the design phase for Ga. 400 at Exit 17. The traffic light will be removed there and their will be an elevated off ramp there,” he said. “There is also a continuous flow interchange being built at Ga. 400 and Dawsonville Hwy.”

Gooch spent much of the summer, traversing the state as co-chairman of a joint legislative broadband committee, studying how to bring internet access to rural parts of the state.

“Twenty years ago when a company came to our area to consider relocating, the things that were important to them was roads, water and sewer,” he said. “Today they have to have internet access.”

Gooch said more than a dozen committees had studied the problem this summer and had come up with a report that incorporates 26 recommendations. That report is ready and is now posted on the state’s website.

The problem, he said, is that companies will only invest hundreds of millions of dollars where they can expect a reasonable return on their investment and that is in the urban and suburban areas.

“In order for rural areas to continue to prosper, we’ve got to find ways to incentivize those investments whether it’s through tax credits, grants or federal programs. We’re going to take a strong look at those 26 recommendations and begin to draft legislation. We won’t be in a pass hurry to pass something in the first three weeks of the session. We’re going to take some time and be deliberative about it.”

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New children’s book celebrates UNG Dahlonega

Community, University of North Georgia

DAHLONEGA, GA

The University of North Georgia President, Bonita Jacobs, has written the first of five children’s book that will pay homage to each UNG campus. The book was published by UNG Press, and is titled, “UNG The Gold I See.”

According to a press release from UNG, the children’s book is designed to engage readers, “Of all ages through its multi-generational main characters. Benjamin Brown, daughter Jamie, and grandson Tommy each have a different goal during Visitors Day at the Dahlonega Campus. The grandfather wants to recall the memories of his years in the Corps of Cadets, while Tommy’s mother wants to remember her years in UNG’s nursing program. Tommy wants to find the legendary treasure: the gold hidden somewhere on campus. He has Nigel the Nighthawk, UNG’s mascot, and a treasure map to guide him; his grandfather and mother have their memories.”

“UNG The Gold I See” will be available November 2018, in hardback copies and will be priced at $29.99.

The next book of the series, featuring the Gainesville campus, is scheduled to be released in 2019.

 

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UNG men’s basketball team took eighth in PCB Preseason Poll

Sports, University of North Georgia

AUGUSTA, GA

According to a press release from the University of North Georgia Athletics Department, the UNG men’s basketball team was picked to finish in a tie for eighth in the Peach Belt Conference Preseason Coaches Poll.

University of North Carolina Pembroke earned nine first place votes to take the top spot in the poll, followed by Clayton State, who took three first place votes. Augusta, University of South Carolina Aiken and Georgia Southwestern rounded out the top five.

The Nighthawks are tied with Georgia College at 49 points in the poll. UNG finished last year in sixth in the Peach Belt after a 12-17 season. The Nighthawks will take to the floor for the first time Sunday night at the UNG Convocation Center in an exhibition against Emory. Tip time is set for 7 p.m.

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UNG women’s soccer seniors announced to All-Peach Belt Conference team

Sports, University of North Georgia

AUGUSTA, Ga. –

According to the University of North Georgia Athletics Department, UNG women’s soccer seniors Renee VanHorn and Asa Thorsen were picked to the All-Peach Belt Conference First Team. The announcement was made at the tournament banquet on Thursday night.

Photo courtesy of UNG Athletics

VanHorn finished in fourth place in the league with 12 goals on the season. She added three assists as well to total 27 points. Six of her 12 goals were game winners.

Thorsen put two goals in the back of the net and assisted on three others this season as a key player in the midfield for the Nighthawks. VanHorn and Thorsen were two of just four players on UNG’s side to play and start in all 16 matches this season.

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UNG women’s cross-country team runners up at PCB Championship

Business

BEECH ISLAND, S.C.

According to a press release from the University of North Georgia Athletics Department, the UNG women’s cross-country team finished in second place on Saturday at the PCB Championship.

UNG junior, Aleah Johnson, led three All-Conference runners to second place behind Flagler Saturday morning at Redcliffe Plantation. Johnson finished in fourth place overall after running a 5K time of 18:40. UNG junior, Bree Hammond, finished in sixth place at 18:51, while sophomore, Kaylee Haake, finished in 15th at 19:09. All three earned All-Conference honors.

Flagler won the race, finishing with 46 points, followed by UNG at 60 points. Columbus State, Georgia College and Augusta rounded out the top five.

This is UNG’s fifth top-2 finish in a row after claiming runner-up honors in 2014, 2015 and 2016.

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UNG women’s basketball team announced as Peach Belt Conference winners

Sports, University of North Georgia
AUGUSTA, GA
According to the University of North Georgia Athletic Department, the Peach Belt Conference announced the No. 16 UNG women’s basketball team as conference winners on Wednesday, October 31.

The Nighthawks claimed all possible first place votes to earn a maximum point total of 121 in the poll. Columbus State was second in the voting with Lander third and a tie for fourth between Flagler and Francis Marion. Coaches were not permitted to vote for their own team.

UNG claimed their second-ever PBC regular season championship and their first PBC Tournament title in 2017-18. UNG also made their second NCAA Tournament appearance, advancing to the round of 16 and the regional championship game. The Nighthawks will return three of their top four scorers from last year’s team including All-Conference senior guards Amber Skidgel and Vanessa Agrusa. Also returning is 2017-18 PBC Freshman of the Year Abbie Franklin.

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