Up & Coming Weekly

March 12, 2019

Up and Coming Weekly is a weekly publication in Fayetteville, NC and Fort Bragg, NC area offering local news, views, arts, entertainment and community event and business information.

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Page 19 of 32

MARCH 13-19, 2019 UCW 19 WWW.UPANDCOMINGWEEKLY.COM LITERATURE D.G. MARTIN, Host of UNC's Book Watch. COMMENTS? Editor@upand- comingweekly.com. 910-484-6200. Military Friendly is a company that assesses quali- ty for military-related issues . VIQTORY is a company that creates resources for people exiting military ser- vice. The two companies announced in January that Fayetteville Technical Community College ranked No. 1 in the Top 10 Gold Category College Award for large community colleges for 2019-2020. FTCC's All American Veterans Center, located on Fort Bragg Road on the Fayetteville campus, and its new dedicated staff are working around the clock to ensure that veterans who wish to use educational benefits receive positive experiences at FTCC. The full-time and part-time staff at the AAVC works hard for veteran students by providing one- on-one support to help them maneuver the multi- step enrollment process. The staff is committed to helping students accomplish this enrollment as efficiently as possible. The center's staff includes school certifying offi- cials, or SCOs, and is comprised of a diverse group that includes those who have served our country in the Air Force, Army and Navy, as well as civilians. SCOs audit students' courses and information to submit information to Veterans Affairs for process- ing benefits. FTCC proudly has more than 2,000 stu- dents using some form of VA benefits to complete associate degree, certificate and diploma programs of study. Another recent change at FTCC and in the Veterans Services Office involves a new online system for electronically filing student documents. Students submitting paperwork to FTCC can now do so via the school's website, www.faytechcc.edu. This means veteran students can now submit the new Veteran Student Intake Form online along with other important documents, such as the DD-214, commonly known as a Certificate of Eligibility. Students can receive help submitting the form at the AAVC's in-house computer room or the Paul H. Thompson Library. They can also submit the online form from their homes or other remote locations. Students also enjoy an open-door policy at FTCC and at the AAVC, providing veterans quick, easy, on-the-spot access to an SCO who can assist with questions. The AAVC provides students with a place to study, to conduct research and to interact with fellow veteran students. The Student Veteran Association holds monthly meetings at the center and invites students to express concerns and share experiences with fellow veteran students and staff members. Students can even enjoy coffee or tea in a relaxed environment while they complete school assign- ments at the AAVC. FTCC invites veterans who are interested in attending college to visit the AAVC, email vso@faytechcc.edu, or call 910-678-8395. It is an honor for the AAVC staff to serve our veterans and respond to their questions and needs to make a positive difference for them. Why would anybody want to spend months walking from the South Carolina coast up through the Piedmont to present-day Charlotte and then back east to the North Carolina tidewater? There are two good reasons, one from more than 300 years ago and the other from modern times. First, in 1700, a newcomer to North America named John Lawson made this long trip to explore and learn about unfamiliar lands. He made the trip on foot because there was no better way to travel through the end- less forests of backcountry Carolinas. Setting off from Charleston, he was accompanied by several Englishmen and Indian guides. The notes he took became the basis of a book, "A New Voyage to Carolina," first published in 1709 and still a classic for its rich descriptions of flora and fauna and the conditions of the native peoples who populated the areas he visited. The more recent traveler, writer Scott Huler, made the long walk because he wanted to fol- low in Lawson's footsteps. He said he looked for a modern book that explained where Lawson went and compared it to what is there today. When he found that it had not been done and that no one had even retraced Lawson's journey, he thought, "That's for me!" Of course, Huler could have made the trip of several hundred miles in a day or two in a car on modern roads. But he wanted to go slow, seeing today's landscapes and peoples at the pace Lawson traveled. He shares his travels in a new book, "A Delicious Country: Rediscovering the Carolinas along the Route of John Lawson's 1700 Expedition." It was released by UNC Press March 4. Like most other readers of Lawson, Huler is impressed with Lawson's descriptions of and attitude about the native populations. Lawson vis- ited Sewee, Santee, Sugeree, Wateree, Catawba, Waxhaw, Occaneechi and Tuscarora Indians. Huler writes, "He (Lawson) stayed in their wigwams, ate their food, trusted their guides. And he emerged with their stories, for some of which he is the only source in the world." Lawson, Huler continues, "documented native communities, buildings, agriculture, hunting, dance, trade, and culture through eyes clear, thorough, and respectful. Lawson depicts the natives as fully human—not some subspecies perceived only in comparison to European settlers." Lawson's words were, "They are really better to us than we are to them." But Lawson found the native populations to be in a precarious situation. "The Small-Pox and Rum have made such a Destruction amongst them, that, on good grounds, I do believe, there is not the sixth Savage living within two hundred Miles of all our Settlements, as there were fifty Years ago. These poor Creatures have so many Enemies to destroy them, that it's a wonder one of them is left alive near us." Traveling Lawson's route through the rural Carolinas, Huler found a surprising and discouraging similarity. The rural and small-town landscapes are littered with empty manufacturing plants, corporate farms and forests, empty main streets and deserted houses. Three centuries after Lawson, Huler found that "our world would teeter: a way of life dying in the countryside, implacable new forces once again balancing an entire civilization on a knife edge." Setting aside this discouraging report, Huler's adventures and misadventures on the road entertain and inform. He is the best type of tour guide, one who is well-informed but not at all pompous. His wry, self-deprecating sense of humor helps his seri- ous medicine go down smoothly. For Lawson, his explorations and the reports about them opened the door to prominence and high positions in the young colony. That success came to a sudden end in 1711 when he was captured and executed by the Indians he had so greatly admired and praised. ROBIN TREVOR, FTCC Military/Veterans Service Technician. COMMENTS? Editor@ upandcomingweekly.com. 910-484-6200. EDUCATION FTCC: Committed to serving veterans by ROBIN TREVOR Following Lawson through the Carolinas by D.G. MARTIN FTCC's All American Veterans Center and its dedicated staff are working to ensure veterans a positive experience pursuing educational opportunities at FTCC. Photo by Jessica Radanavong on Unsplash Scott Huler's new book was released March 4.

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