Top 10 Most Memorable Moments of 2022

Take a walk down memory lane and reflect on this historic year

This past year was filled with growth and evolution for the Lees-McRae community and the campus itself. Throughout the many changes, developments, and updates, the college has kept its sights set on the values and priorities laid out in the strategic plan and made decisions that both honor the past and look forward into the future.

Join us as we reflect on the year and the many ways Lees-McRae is becoming a more excellent institution.

The acquisition of the South Campus at Grandfather Home property

In March, President Lee King announced that Lees-McRae purchased the Grandfather Home for Children property from Children’s Hope Alliance. This agreement not only doubled the size of the college’s campus and supplied the space needed to grow and sustain the development of the college for the foreseeable future, but it also carried on the original purpose Rev. Edgar Tufts had for the land when he initially established both institutions.

With this purchase the college gained 475 new acres of land, but it also gained immeasurable opportunities for the continued success and development of the college.

Learn more about the acquisition of South Campus
Learn about The Legacy Campaign

A Special Announcement from President King

Renovations begin throughout Historic Commons buildings

A $30 million investment by the United States Department of Agriculture Rural Development has allowed extensive renovations of the historic buildings on the college’s North Campus to begin this year, as outlined in the Facilities Master Plan. Once the renovations are complete, the North Carolina Building, Tennessee and Virginia Halls, and the Pinnacle Room will be fully updated to better serve the needs of the students, faculty, and staff of Lees-McRae.

Read more about the renovation and the partnership between Lees-McRae and the USDA

Charles Gibson III hired as inaugural Chief Diversity Officer

Charles Gibson III made history when he was hired to be the college’s first Chief Diversity Officer. In this new and important role Gibson has spearheaded Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) initiatives such as working with student leaders to found culture-focused clubs and beginning a discussion panel series called Diversity Dialogues.

Get to know Charles

Maria Döring wins Women's Individual Omnium National Championship in cycling

Senior Maria Döring finished out her last season of cycling at Lees-McRae with a bang when she secured the Women’s Individual Omnium National Championship at the MTB National Championships in Durango, Colorado. Originally from Germany, Döring said winning an American National Championship is surreal and will mark a milestone in her career.

Döring stood on the podium with Mady Rails, another Lees-McRae student who placed fourth in the Women’s Individual Omnium.

U.S. News and World Report ranks Lees-McRae College among top 25 regional colleges in the Southeast

U.S. News and World Report awarded the college the 21st spot on their list of 75 regional colleges in the Southeast for 2023. This moved Lees-McRae up from the 2022 ranking of 28th and exemplified the college’s trend of growth and desire to constantly improve.

In 2022, Lees-McRae also received recognition as one of the best online colleges in the country. Among other accolades, the college's Online Human Services program was ranked as a top-three North Carolina program of that discipline.

Bobcats return to the mountain for Homecoming weekend 2022

Bobcat alumni young and old returned to Banner Elk for what was the first semi-normal Homecoming weekend since before the COVID-19 pandemic. It was an action-packed weekend where many of the celebration’s events focused on honoring the college’s history and applying the legacy of the past to a new era at Lees-McRae.

Although rainy weather from Hurricane Ian forced many of the celebrations indoors, the Bobcat spirit continued to thrive.

Relive the entire weekend of festivities

Lees-McRae signs new articulation agreement with Bahamas Agriculture and Marine Science Institute

The Bahamas Agriculture and Marine Science Institute (BAMSI) on the island of Andros, Bahamas became the latest academic partner for Lees-McRae thanks to a new articulation agreement between the institutions.

Provost Alyson Gill, Dean of Education and Social Sciences Pam Vesely, and Dean of Student Success Beth Beggs traveled to the BAMSI campus to begin strengthening the relationship and making plans for the partnership between the two schools.

Learn more about the partnership between Lees-McRae and BAMSI

Bobcat skiing/snowboarding team brings home NCAA National Championship

The men’s and women’s skiing/snowboarding team became the U.S. Ski and Snowboard National Champions for 2022 at the championship event in Lake Placid, N.Y. in March. Their wins from the weekend also included four team event national titles and an individual national title for Lili Bauer ’22 in the women’s Alpine Combined snowboard event.

Read more about the team's achievements

Two new online master's programs expand graduate-level academic offerings at Lees-McRae

The online Master of Science in Criminal Justice and online Master of Healthcare Administration will expand the further education opportunities students have at Lees-McRae. New programs are important factors that keep any institution of higher education moving forward, and these will ensure that Lees-McRae stays on the cutting edge of academic and professional requirements.

Learn about the online Master of Science in Criminal Justice
Learn about the online Master of Healthcare Administration

Men’s volleyball player Michael Marsans leads nation in kills per set

Senior Sports Management major Michael Marsans has continuously set records throughout his career on the Lees-McRae men’s volleyball team. He was honored as an All-Conference Carolinas Spring 2022 award winner for leading both the nation and the conference with an average of 5.38 kills per set. During his junior season he racked up a total of 392 kills.

Read more about Marsans' All-Conference Carolinas honor

By Maya JarrellDecember 16, 2022
AcademicsFamiliesOnline LearningCommunityAlumniAthleticsCampus Life