09/14/04 — Mount Olive College gets 250,000 dollar donation from BlueCross/Blue Shield

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Mount Olive College gets 250,000 dollar donation from BlueCross/Blue Shield

By Bonnie Edwards
Published in News on September 14, 2004 1:59 PM

MOUNT OLIVE -- BlueCross BlueShield of North Carolina has contributed $250,000 to Mount Olive College's New Century Capital Campaign.

The company is the state's largest health insurer, with more than 2.5 million subscribers.

The gift will be directed to the Wellness Center, a 23,500-foot building that will house Student Health Services, with offices and examining rooms and a testing lab, an aerobics/cardio fitness area, a weight room, dressing rooms and a regulation-size basketball court.

The health facility will also serve as a community resource for such activities as educational conferences, wellness lectures and fairs and training workshops.

Becky Mitchell, the college's vice president of institutional advancement, said Mount Olive College officials are thrilled with the generous gift from BlueCross BlueShield.

"Their support will certainly improve the health of Eastern North Carolina by allowing the college to provide wellness facilities for our students, faculty, staff and the region," she said.

In September 2001, Mount Olive College and Pfeiffer University formed an educational alliance to work with the insurance company and implement the Blue University vision of lifelong learning. For the past several years Mount Olive College professors have been teaching weekly courses on site at the company's triangle location.

In the program, employees can earn an associate's or bachelor's degree through Mount Olive College, with the company covering all or part of the expenses.

Since the program began, more than 150 employees have taken advantage of the Blue University partnership and enrolled at Mount Olive College.

The relationship between Mount Olive College and the company is what the college and its capital campaign are all about, said Dr. J. William Byrd, president of the college. "Through their significant gift we will be able to continue to grow and offer more opportunities for Eastern North Carolina."