Paine College Track Star and Georgia Native Earned 2nd Place Finish at the NCAA Division II Championship

Posted by lsuggs | 06/13/2013 11:25 AM

(Augusta, GA) – Brunswick, Georgia native Baiesha Johnson, Paine College Lady Lions track and field athlete, qualified for the 2013 NCAA championship in Pueblo, Colorado. This performance earned Johnson a NCAA 2nd place ranking.  Following her participation in the May 23rd long jump contest finishing 2nd in the final with a jump of 6.19 meters, she competed in the high jump event on May 26th, finishing her contest with an attempt at 1.70 meters mark, although her personal record in the high jump is 1.76 meters.

Of course, in her new career as a professional athlete, she faces quite a few challenges, including the personal investment of time, as well as the financial support required.   Johnson is set to depart from the United States on June 22, 2013 to compete on the European EAA and EAP circuit in quest of earning a professional spot representing the United States of America in the 100 and 200 meters sprint events and in the long jump event.

Johnson, a May 2013 graduate of Paine College in Augusta, Georgia, earned a degree in Accounting.  She hopes to transition into a professional career in athletics, as it is a long held dream.  Her immediate plans are to focus entirely on training.

Prior to going to the NCAA championships, during the SIAC championship which took place late April 2013, Johnson was the conference leader and champion in the long jump, high jump, and also NCAA qualifier in both events in the national championships.  She was the recipient of the SIAC Field Athlete of the Year while competing at the 2013 SIAC championship in Atlanta, Georgia. 

Johnson’s jump of 6.28 meters (20’7”) and an automatic qualifying mark placed her in the top 2 ranking in the NCAA Division II in the nation.  Her high jump mark of 1.74 meters (5’8”) earned her a NCAA Div. II provisional qualifier. As an outcome, she earned a 2nd place finish All American at the NCAA Div. ll in Pueblo, Colorado with a second best mark of 6.19 meters in the long jump event.

As an honor student, maintaining a 3.0 GPA or higher from 2011 to 2013, she hopes one day to pursue a career in business.  Her immediate goals are focused on competing in the professional world of track and field athletics as she plans to travel to Europe at the end of June to compete in various countries in hope of improving her marks and times in the sprint events.  As the second oldest in a family of ten children, she is proud to be the first in her siblings to graduate from college.

Johnson’s travel fees will amount to a total of $4,500. She will compete in Belgium, France, and Italy starting June 22, 2013. To assist Johnson with travel costs, please contact the Office of Institutional Advancement at Paine College at 706-821-8233 or

For more information on Paine College, please visit, or contact Leah Suggs in the Office of Communications & Marketing at

(706) 821.8322, (803) 524.3195.

Photo caption: Baiesha Johnson, of Brunswick, Georgia, set to compete in Europe in quest of earning a professional spot representing the United States of America.





Posted by lsuggs | 06/6/2013 04:58 AM

 (Augusta, GA) – Paine College welcomes the 2013 Christian Methodist Episcopal Church Sixth Episcopal District Leadership School Conference to its campus on June 6-9, 2013.  This year’s conference theme is, “Empowering a Generation: Growing in Evangelism Leadership & Love”.

The Christian Leadership School is a program of the General Board of Christian Education, developed and implemented by the Sixth Episcopal District Board of Christian Education. The school is designed to help ministers, missionaries, lay persons, Christian educators, and youth, 12 years and older, to become more effective leaders in the church and community.

“We are pleased and delighted to host the Sixth Episcopal District’s CME Leadership Conference,” stated Brandon Brown, Vice President of Institutional Advancement at the College, “Bestowing leadership within our youth is critical in their development as good stewards of the community and our nation”.

Paine College was founded by the leadership of the Methodist Episcopal Church South, now United Methodist Church, and the Colored Methodist Episcopal Church, now Christian Methodist Episcopal Church.

For more information on the Leadership School Conference, please visit

For more information on Paine College, please visit, or contact Leah Suggs in the Office of Communications & Marketing at

(706) 821.8322, (803) 524.3195 or


 Photo caption: Paine College hosts CME Leadership Conference on June 6-9, 2013.




Paine College Introduces New Director of Student Activities

Posted by lsuggs | 05/31/2013 07:10 AM

(Augusta, GA) – Paine College welcomes, Sasha McCraw, the new Director of Student Activities.  She holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Social Science, with a minor in Business Administration, and a Master of Science in Counseling Psychology from Troy University. 

Prior to joining the Paine College Community, McCraw served as a Communications Officer with the Dougherty County Police Department, Albany, Georgia.

 Ms. McCraw’s post graduate work specializes in clinical bio-psychosocial, crisis intervention, and triage assessments for clients with reoccurring mental health disorders and disabilities utilizing a multidisciplinary team approach to promote client recovery.

The new Director of Student Activities provides oversight for major campus activities student programming and serves as the primary advisor to the Paine College Student Government Association and other clubs and organizations that provide new students opportunities to fully engage in student life as they arrive to campus each fall. The Director of Student Activities is also involved in coordinating major events such as New Student Orientation, PaineFest, Homecoming, and Coronation. McCraw will play a critical role as a facilitator, leader, and an essential person in the effective process of student development at Paine College.

For more information on Paine College, please visit, or contact Leah Suggs in the Office of Communications & Marketing at
(706) 821.8322, (803) 524.3195.


Photo caption: Sasha McCraw, Paine College new Director of Student Activities.




Posted by lsuggs | 05/31/2013 07:08 AM

(Augusta, GA) – Ms. Chimwemwe Mwase hails from Lusaka, the capital city of Zambia,‘home of the Victoria falls’. Ms. Chimwemwe Mwase has excelled in her dream of proving to people that neither gender nor age can stand in the way of an enthusiastic heart. Through the guidance of a non-profit organization, Mwase gained admission to Paine College as a Presidential Scholar where she is currently a freshman pursuing a major in Biology Pre-professional Science. She is an active member of Paine College’s International Students Association (ISA).

Mwase intends to use the plethora of opportunities available to her at Paine College to help her gain admissions into Johns Hopkins University- School of Medicine. There, she plans to enroll in the dual MD/PhD program which will enable her to work at improving existing and developing new treatments of diseases. Upon completion of this program, she intends to return to her home country which has a serious shortage of medical personnel.

Mwase is in strong agreement with President Barack Obama who says that, “It will be the young people of Africa, brimming with talent, energy, and hope who will claim the future that so many in previous generations never realized,” Ms. Mwase believes that she is a part of that future.

For more information on Paine College, please visit, or contact Leah Suggs in the Office of Communications & Marketing at
(706) 821.8322, (803) 524.3195.

Photo caption: Sophmore Chimwemwe Mwase hails from Lusaka, the capital city of Zambia.



School of Arts and Sciences’ Faculty Present at the National Symposium of Faculty Resource Network of New York University

Posted by lsuggs | 05/31/2013 06:59 AM

(Augusta, GA) – Recently, three faculty from the School of Arts and Sciences (Ms. Marva Stewart (English), Ms. Elizabeth Siciliano (English), and Ms. Rhonda McCoy (Computer Science and Information Technology Specialist) were selected to present their panel discussions and final paper at the National Symposium of the Faculty Resource Network of New York University.

Faculty Resource Network programs and events are offered year-round, and serve to provide faculty from member institutions with a broad range of faculty development opportunities ranging from intensive summer seminars, longer research residencies, lunchtime lectures, panel discussions, national symposia, and more. The FRN also sponsors a Student Exchange Program with a number of Historically Black Colleges and Universities and Hispanic-serving institutions.
Professors Stewart, Siciliano, and McCoy presented at the “New Faces, New Expectations” National Symposium, and, as a result, excerpts from their presentation have been published in a Fall Publication of the Faculty Resource Network of New York University.

Please click the link below to read a portion of the professors’ presentation.

For Paine College faculty interested in these and other faculty professional development opportunities, please contact Dean Emily Allen-Williams (School of Arts and Sciences) who serves as the Faculty Liaison for the Faculty Resource Network at New York University.

It Takes a Village: Using Collaboration to Enhance Interactive Learning and Improve the Employability of Liberal Arts Students

For more information on Paine College, please visit, or contact Leah Suggs in the Office of Communications & Marketing at
(706) 821.8322, (803) 524.3195.



Paine College Professor Offers FREE Summer Chemistry Course for Middle and High School Students

Posted by lsuggs | 05/22/2013 07:00 AM

(AUGUSTA, GA)-- Dr. Sardar Yousufzai, Assistant Professor of Chemistry, Physics & Environmental Sciences will offer a free six-week chemistry course for middle and high students starting June 6th-July 18th 2013. The free six-week, one -hour course will cover the basic concept of Chemistry through instruction and demonstration. The objective is to prepare students with basic knowledge for science courses. The course will take place on the Paine College campus in Haygood Holsey Hall, Room 220. Students will meet Tuesday and Thursday from 10:30 a.m. - 11:30 a.m.

“It is something I wanted to do in order to help youth prepare for chemistry in middle and high school,” Yousufzai said. “It is my hope that the youth learn science at an early stage to do better in future.”

Yousufzai’s educational background consists of a Bachelor of Science in Chemistry (1967; Agra University India), a Master’s of Science in Microbiology (major) and Organic Chemistry (minor) in 1971 (Panthnagar University, India), a Masters of Philosophy in Biochemistry (1975; Aligarh University, India) and a Ph.D. in Biochemistry (1978; Aligar University, India).

His research experience includes serving as a Post-Doctoral Fellow (Department of Physiology and Department of Nutrition, University of Wisconsin, 1978-1982), a Research Assistant Scientist (Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, Medical College of Georgia, 1982-1990), and an Assistant Professor (Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, Medical College of Georgia, 1991-2000).

Space is limited. Dr. Yousufzai is now accepting students. To enroll your youth, please call (706) 860-8992 or email by Monday, June 3, 2013.

For more information on Paine College, please visit, or contact Leah Suggs in the Office of Communications & Marketing at

(706) 821.8322, (803) 524.3195.


Photo caption: Dr. Yousufzai giving demonstration in Free Summer Chemistry Course 2012.

Paine College SGA President, Jill Ballesteros, Says Education is the Passport to Success

Posted by lsuggs | 05/17/2013 12:08 PM

(Augusta, GA) – “Education is the passport to success,” said Jill Andrea Ballesteros.   Ms. Ballesteros, a senior psychology major with an emphasis in counseling, hails from the beautiful city of Los Angeles, California.

 Since her freshman year, Ms. Ballesteros was encouraged to find her passion.  She found that Paine College’s mission to develop students who provide “leadership and service” spoke to the way that she wanted to engage in her collegiate experience. 

She is actively involved in the Paine College Pre-Alumni Council, the National Pre-Alumni Council, Student Government Association (SGA), Sisters on a Mission (SOM), Adopt-A- Freshman, NAACP, Active Minds, and Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Incorporated.  Ms. Ballesteros said, “Being a member of these great organizations gives me the opportunity to work with my peers, as well as make an effective change on campus as a student leader/mentor.” 

Ms. Ballesteros is fueled by her own passion and inspires others to aspire.  She serves as a mentor to young girls through the Kids with a Future program at St. Luke’s Methodist Church.

In the fall of 2013, she was inducted into the Kappa Rho Chapter of Alpha Kappa Mu Honor Society and her peers honored her by electing her to be the voice of the Paine College student body as the 2013-2014 Student Government Association (SGA) President.

Upon graduating from Paine College, she plans to earn a Master’s degree in Counseling so that she can “be the change she wants to see in the world.” (Mahatma Gandhi).

 For more information on Paine College, please visit, or contact Leah Suggs in the Office of Communications & Marketing at

(706) 821.8322, (803) 524.3195.

Photo caption: Jill Ballesteros, rising senior at Paine College.




Dottie Peoples in Concert

Posted by lsuggs | 05/10/2013 08:54 AM

Dear Paine College Alumni and Friends,

Many students who are brilliant and want to have higher education have to depend on scholarships to make their dreams of higher education come true. In this letter, I appeal to you on behalf of many students who need scholarships in order to acquire a higher education.
It is a great honor to be a part of this wonderful cause for Paine College National Alumni Association. I have long believed that all students should have the opportunity to attend college. Having supported my nephews in their journeys through college, I know that it was an unspeakable rewarding experience to see them reach their goals during and after college. However, this is not the case for all students. There are many young adults with bright futures who are unable to attend college simply because they cannot afford the tuition.
That is why I am making a personal effort to support the Paine College National Alumni Association in raising money for the Paine College Scholarship Fund, by being a part of this spectacular event that will take place on Saturday, June 1, 2013, 7:00 p.m., at the Saint Phillips AME Church in Decatur, Georgia.
Please join me in my efforts to support higher education through your participation and sponsorship of this event. I look forward to greeting you during a reception before the Concert and seeing each and every one of you there! Even if you are unable to attend, please contribute to this event to fulfill many dreams to come true through education.

God Bless and see you there,
Dottie Peoples

For more information and to purchase tickets for the PCNAA GospelFEST featuring Dottie Peoples, please visit or call 404.626.4790.

Paine College Becomes Newest Member of Active Minds, Inc.

Posted by lsuggs | 05/10/2013 04:09 AM

(Augusta, GA) – Paine College recently become the newest campus chapter of Active Minds, Inc., a network of students from across North America who care deeply about eliminating stigma surrounding mental health and who work tirelessly to spread awareness of this important issue on college campuses.

Active Minds is a National organization designed to empower students to change the perceptions about mental illness and behavioral health on college campuses.  It promotes an end to the stigma associated seeking help for emotional and behavioral health problems.

In addition to peer leadership and mental health advocacy, Active Minds encourages research and scholarship. The Emerging Scholars Fellowship program provides an opportunity for students to complete funded, independent mental health projects and to be connected with a network of young scholars and national experts in the field of behavioral health. The program is dedicated to supporting behavioral health research by college-aged scholars.

Active Minds at Paine College is organized under the umbrella of Project HARAMBEE: Promoting Help Seeking,  Emotional Wellness, Substance Abuse and Suicide Prevention Initiative, funded by the HBCU- Center for Excellence at Morehouse School of Medicine. The advisor is Associate Professor Department of Social Sciences / Behavioral Science Research Institute, Dr. Adeleri Onisegun who is also the Project Director/Principal Investigator for Project Harambee.

For more information on Paine College, please visit, or contact Leah Suggs in the Office of Communications & Marketing at

(706) 821.8322, (803) 524.3195.


Photo caption: Members of the Paine College Active Minds, Inc. organization.






Paine College National Alumni Association Presents GospelFEST Featuring Dottie Peoples

Posted by lsuggs | 05/10/2013 04:05 AM

 (Augusta, GA) --The Paine College National Alumni Association will present Gospel diva Dottie Peoples in concert Saturday, June 1, 2013 at 7 p.m. in the performing arts auditorium of the Saint Phillips A.M.E. Church located at 240 Candler Road, SE, Decatur, Georgia.  General admission is $20.  VIP tickets are available at $100 and will allow entry for two people and an opportunity to meet Dottie in person in a private reception.  Proceeds will benefit Paine College located in Augusta, GA.  For more information and to purchase tickets, visit or call 404.626.4790.

About the Artist

Dottie Peoples’ name embodies the spirit of who she is; a “people” person who continually reaches out to others to uplift, encourage, and inspire. Her music is a call to action, not for one audience, but for everyone, and her style is all her own, though her powerhouse singing has given her the moniker “the gospel Patti LaBelle.”

She has also been honored with comparisons to Mahalia Jackson, Aretha Franklin, and Shirley Caesar in presence, legendary status, and vocal power.

One of ten children, Dottie grew up in Ohio, spending summers in Alabama with her grandmother, Big Mama, and her sister Juanita. Big Mama was a fixture in their old southern church, singing from the choir to her granddaughter Dottie in the front pew.

During the service on those steamy Alabama Sundays, Big Mama would lean over to tell Dottie, who leaned in with big eyes, wide as saucers, and listen to her grandmother promise that one day she would be a singer too. Dottie would respond, “I wanna be like Mahalia Jackson.”

Of course, the rest is history. Those many summers spent ‘livin’ at the church’ with Big Mama took root in Dottie’s heart and her love for singing and sharing the gospel through music turned into her passion and career for life.

While many gospel singers grew up singing with family members, Dottie is quick to point out that her family is no Winans act. Each of the siblings grew up to do different things, leaving Dottie with the mantle of family songstress.

She sang throughout high school and it was after a performance in Dayton, OH, that the World’s Greatest Storyteller, Dorothy Norwood, invited her to join her on the road. Given permission to leave by her mother, she traveled with Dorothy, who was currently enjoying a big hit with “Gotta Be Some Rain In Your Life.”

The tour was significant to Dottie not only because it was her first opportunity to sing in a big concert setting, but because Dorothy’s group was opening for none other than rock and roll giant The Rolling Stones and Pop icon, Stevie Wonder. This experience impacted Dottie tremendously and when she returned home, she continued to perform and work on her music.

Work was an important aspect of Dottie’s life as a young adult as she knew that her father, an employee for GM, needed help providing for her younger brothers and sisters, while her mother took charge of the domestic areas of their family life. Her original plan was to continue her music studies at college, however, she lacked the funding to go to school and did not win the scholarship she applied for.

Undaunted, she continued to sing and work, sure that God was blessing her every step of the way so that she could find ways to continue.

Dottie experimented with different careers including: working at a hospital, at GM with her father, at a law firm and briefly singing jazz in some of the nation’s top nightclubs. Realizing that Jazz was not God’s will for her, she relocated from Ohio to Atlanta, GA and once settled, Dottie joined Salem Baptist Church, home to renowned orator, Reverend Jasper Williams Jr.

Eventually she joined the music staff as a Director and worked in the tape ministry department of the church; in the late seventies Dottie was hired as General Manager of Church Door Records which was owned and operated by the church. She also acted as producer for the pastor, the Salem church choir, and for her first two solo efforts, Surely God is Able (1984) and Is It Worth It All (1987) for the church record label, Church Door Records.

During her stint at Church Door, in 1990, Dottie developed her own radio show, “The Dottie People’s Showcase,” which aired on Atlanta radio’s WAOK for six years. After fourteen years as GM for Church Door Records, Herb Lance, from Revelation Records (a record store), went to Alan Freeman, CEO of AIR (Atlanta International) Records, proclaiming she had too much talent to be managing a record label.

This move was the big break she needed to get her foot in the door as a professional performer and has led her to many successes. Her first cut with AIR, Live At Salem Baptist Church, earned her, her first Stellar nomination for Best Traditional Female Solo Performance and her 1994 release, On Time God reached #1 on gospel charts, sweeping the Stellars in four categories, the GMWA Awards in three and earned her a nomination for Soul Train’s Lady of Soul Award.

Earning nominations and awards in every category available to her, including Best Traditional Gospel Album (Dove Award, 2000) to Traditional Female Vocalist of the Year (Stellar Award, 2004) and other accolades, such as being inducted into the Gospel Music Hall of Fame and earning the prestigious James Cleveland Lifetime Achievement Award (GMWA) has not disrupted Dottie’s personal connection with people.

Her reputation for warmth and compassion precedes her, as she routinely embraces fans with the love and sincerity of a close friend.

Although 56 prestigious awards, nominations, and recognitions fill her resume in addition to countless television appearances, tours and special performances (The Power ’98 tour, singing the National Anthem at Atlanta Braves and Hawks games), Dottie’s mission and principle focus remain intact. Her ministry is people.

She is quick to give credit for her notoriety to the people who have helped her to rise to public acclaim (Bobby Jones, Alan Freeman, radio announcers, fans, her musicians, crew and staff), and speaks tirelessly of wanting to reach others with a timely message of deliverance, the saving grace of God, hope and mercy.

On The Collection: Songs Of Faith, Hope & Love (1998), she compiled her most requested inspirational ballads. The liner notes included testimonies from people deeply touched by her songs, among them this emotional letter: “I was on drugs for eleven years and had no hope in life at all. I tried to kill myself several times. I sold my body for drugs. I stole, cheated and did everything for my habit. I found my life falling apart and having nowhere to go. I had a 9mm pulled on me, but by the grace of God the bullet didn’t come out of the barrel. I heard your song on the radio, and I knew God stepped in “On Time.” This will always be my song of praise.”

Dottie Peoples is one of the most well-loved, respected, and honored vocalists in the industry today. She sings through the rafters, in any range, and fills a concert hall with vibrant energy and genuine class. Her 2005 release, Live in Memphis, He Said It, further proclaims her testimony and underscores the reason why she has risen to such legendary stature in such a short time.

And now Dottie Peoples, the 3 time Grammy nominee, Dove, Soul Train and multiple Stellar Award winner including the 2010 Traditional Female Vocalist of the Year is poised to bless the masses once again! Affectionately known as “The Songbird of The South”, Dottie has maintained an iconic presence in gospel music for over twenty years and now she brings us the first single I Got This from her latest effort, “I Got This – LIVE!” With known classics to include the ever popular “On Time God, Testify, and God Can, to name a few, Ms. Peoples now takes us on a journey delivering her signature traditional style with a contemporary flair and a message for all.


Paine College National Alumni Association Presents:

Gospel FEST

Featuring Dottie Peoples

Saturday, June 1, 2013  - 7pm

Saint Phillips A.M.E. Church

240 Candler Road SE – Decatur, Georgia

General Admission - $20

For more information, visit – 404.626.4790

RADIO -For more information, interviews, servicing or on-air giveaways, please contact Eboni Funderburk of EFG Promotions via email: or phone: 615-538-8196.

PRESS – please contact : Chelsey Dickson, TKO Marketing, 615.385.1211, email:

For more information on Paine College, please visit, or contact Leah Suggs in the Office of Communications & Marketing at (706) 821.8322, (803) 524.3195.

Photo caption: Celebrated gospel artist, Dottie Peoples.