By 1972, Central Piedmont’s campus and student population began to grow exponentially. President Dr. Richard Hagemeyer quickly realized that while the campus was growing rapidly, there were still an overwhelming number of people throughout Mecklenburg County in need of an education, yet were unable to commute to campus.
Dr. Hagemeyer advocated for funding in hopes of building other campuses throughout the county. Though his requests were denied, he sought other ways to provide equitable access to education in the days before the internet. It was out of this necessity that the concept of “Distance Education” was born.
Through the Rural Renaissance Project, which utilized local newspapers, radio, television, and even the telephone, Central Piedmont created a variety of services through partnerships which provided access to educational materials for all who wished to learn.
Over time, these “analog” services evolved into the digital services our society has grown accustomed to. As a student, imagine yourself having to use the telephone to listen to your textbook passage; or using the newspaper to receive your weekly assignments for your courses.
The items on display peel back the layers of time and serve as evidence of the tenacity of Central Piedmont to provide equitable education by any means necessary.