The Innovative High Schools’ ribbon cutting – already an exciting day for Career Academy and Early College students and staff – will be made even more memorable, thanks to a local veteran and Sen. Richard Burr.
On Thursday, July 27, Dr. Martha Fernicola made a surprise visit to Kent Parent, principal of the Career Academy, which will be sharing space with the Early Collage in the Dr. Molly A. Parkhill building on the Blue Ridge Community College campus.
Fernicola’s son, Donovan, will be a freshman at the Career Academy in August and they reached out to Sen. Richard Burr to procure an American flag that had flown over the U.S. Capitol.
“Being a veteran, I wanted to make sure a flag flies over the schools,” Fernicola said. “Now we have a very special flag.”
As Parent taught Donovan how to fold the flag, Fernicola explained she and her son’s new principal share a special connection, having both been enlisted in the U.S. Army around the same time. While Parent was in the military police in Alaska from 1983 to 1994, Fernicola was serving in Germany and Korea in Operation Desert Storm.
Parent said, “It’s a great honor to have a flag that was flown over the U.S. Capitol fly over the schools.”
“We, as part of the Early College, are appreciative of the dedication and commitment our veteran parents and Mr. Parent have shown our country,” said Early College Principal Beth Caudle. “We are excited to start our new journey together under this one flag uniting our schools.”
The flag will be raised over the Career Academy and Early College during a ceremony at the Innovative High Schools’ ribbon cutting in August.
– By Molly McGowan Gorsuch
Public Information Officer