Paine College welcomes back students with hopes of promising future

Published: Aug. 26, 2022 at 7:10 PM EDT
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AUGUSTA, Ga. (WRDW/WAGT) - Friday, Paine College kicked off the new year with its annual convocation ceremony.

In the last five years, the school’s battled accreditation issues.

Augusta National also set up Honorary Lee Elder scholarships for golf athletes.

Paine college has been in the Augusta community for 140 years and it has not always been easy, as over the last few years the college has had its share of challenges.

But Friday, as students, faculty, and staff return for convocation, the president told us how they plan to overcome these challenges and what students can expect this year.

”We continue to face challenges, even though we are resilient,” said President of Paine College, Dr. Cheryl Evans Jones.

Some of those challenges include accreditation, bringing in students, and keeping them at the school, but the president says they have a plan.

“We have recruiters who go out across the CSRA, across Georgia and other parts of the country recruiting students, telling the story of Paine College,” said Jones.

She says they have brought enrollment up 20 percent since the spring semester, and with more students comes more upgrades to campus.

“One of the things that we’ll be doing is upgrading some of our facilities, replacing air conditioning and upgrading roofs and things like that,” said Jones.

The college is also adding extracurricular activities like a brand-new women’s golf team and restarting the choir.

It’s not just facility upgrades and new additions, they’re also giving students resources.

Through a partnership with Moolah Media, recording artist CeeLo Green, and the Board of Trustees, every student on a Pell Grant received a free tablet with connectivity.

A Member of the Board of Trustees and Alumni, J.R. Henderson, said: “Wherever the students are they can get their work done and they can stay connected with their teachers and their professors so they can accomplish whatever they need to accomplish.”

Jones says she is hopeful they can keep pushing education forward for 140 more years.

Freshman Brooklyn Collins said: “I think it’s amazing because it pushes students, and it allows some students that don’t have access to laptops and other technology to be able to push their education further.”