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UNC-P aid flood victims 

Sixteen students from UNC-Pembroke lent a helping hand to three families in South Carolina who were affected by the early October flooding.

“The group was getting down and dirty with some of the families directly impacted by the flooding,” said Dalton Hoffer, the assistant director for Student Engagement at UNCP.

Students volunteered for jobs including ripping up carpeting, cleaning up the homes and even personal jobs like going through ruined family photos, which some of the victims could not bear to do. 

The volunteering was a collaboration between UNC-Pembroke and New Springs Network, a religious organization committed to helping those going through hard times.

Hoffer said UNCP received positive feedback from the students after the trip, and even received praises via Facebook from two of the families they helped. 

“The group who went thoroughly enjoyed it and the praise they got from the people they helped made it even more worthwhile” he said. 

UNC-Pembroke is planning on sending another group of volunteers to South Carolina to assist with flood relief.

Battle Canoes returns to UNC-Greensboro 

UNC-Greensboro will host an intramural event Oct. 28 that might be unfamiliar to many people: Battle Canoes.

“Battle Canoes is a fun event where teams of three compete to sink the other teams," said Erik Unger, assistant director of UNC-G's intramural and club sports. "We place up to six canoes in the pool for each round and the last team floating is the winner. The winners from each elimination round advance to the championship round.” 

The two attackers attempt to fill up the rival teams' canoes with water while the defender is given a shield to fend off water from the other teams' attackers, Unger said. And ultimately, canoes can be steered with either hands or paddles. 

Campus Recreation said little to no experience is necessary. Students are not required to know how to swim if they are confident in the ability of their team to stay afloat. 

This will be the second year that UNC-G has hosted the event.

Battle Canoes takes place in both the fall and the spring so those unable to defend their canoe this October will have another chance come spring. 

“It is a great event that attracts individuals who don't play traditional sports,” Unger said.

Fayetteville hopes to ally with Cuban universities

Fayetteville State University recently sent Chancellor James Anderson to Cuba as one of 14 university presidents with the intent of reestablishing lost ties with Cuba.

The university, following the lead of President Barack Obama, aims to renew ties with the nation that were cut 54 years ago by the trade embargo. The partnership being proposed by the university to Cuban officials involves an increase in the number of Cuban students attending FSU. 

Negotiations are underway with university officials, who maintain that all students who come to study would have to be fluent in English and already pay their tuition for the school. 

This partnership will be much like the partnership that the university has with other countries including China, Nigeria and India. 

Officials hope the new agreement with Cuba will bring more money and allow Fayetteville State to request additional state funding. 

NCCU Chancellor Battles Cancer

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Though a UNC-system chancellor is battling cancer, she hasn't let her diagnosis slow her down.

North Carolina Central University Chancellor Debra Saunders-White announced she was recently diagnosed with kidney cancer and is now almost halfway finished with chemotherapy treatments.

Saunders-White, diagnosed in May, said her prognosis is good and she plans to continue serving as chancellor, according to The (Raleigh) News & Observer.

She has received an outpouring of support from friends, family, students, faculty, alumni and others, said Ayana Hernandez, associate vice chancellor for university relations at NCCU. 

"Chancellor Saunders-White is a wonderful colleague and she'll certainly be in our thoughts and have our full support as she manages through this health issue," said Joni Worthington, spokesperson for the UNC system, in an email.

"She is continuing to carry out her duties and lead the campus with her usual positive attitude and enthusiasm, and we're wishing her a full and speedy recovery," she said.

Saunders-White has been chancellor since 2013 — previously serving as acting assistant secretary for the U.S. Department of Education’s Office of Postsecondary Education and technology administrator at UNC-Wilmington and at Hampton University in Virginia, after 15 years at IBM.

"We are standing beside her and surrounding her with a tremendous amount of love, prayers and support," Hernandez said. "She's awesome as a leader — she will continue to lead the institution and we are just praying with her and for her."

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