February 19, 2021 – Shelton State Community College will conclude its celebration of Black History Month with a day of service honoring former president Norman Cephus on Friday, February 26, 2021. Part of “Black History Spirit Week,” faculty, staff, students, and community members are encouraged to participate in a personal day of service and post their activity on social media using the hashtag #SSCCCelebratesBlackHistory.
Cephus, who passed away in January, was President of Fredd State Technical College (now Shelton State Community College’s Fredd Campus) from 1982 until his retirement in 1990. During his time at as the College’s President, he oversaw expansion of the physical plant, its designation as a Historically Black College and University by the U.S. Department of Education, and its participation in the Title III Grant Program.
“Mr. Norman Cephus was a true visionary, and because of the seeds he planted during his leadership of the C.A. Fredd Campus, growth is abundant in the form of expanded programs and facilities,“ stated Ronald Range, Dean of the C.A. Fredd Campus and Director of Title III Programs. “He was the architect behind the acquisition of Title III funds, which continues to be the impetus of strengthening and enhancing programs and facilities on the Fredd Campus.”
As a devoted advocate for education, Cephus sought ways to improve options for members of his community. “Mr. Cephus will always be remembered as a catalyst for helping people of color get access to a quality education,” said Eric Prewitt, SSCC’s Veterans Resource Center Manager and Diversity Liaison. “He used his educational platform to ensure that people of color would have future opportunities through the merger of Fredd State Technical College with Shelton State Community College.”
Married for almost 68 years, Cephus’ wife, Eloise, noted that her husband was devoted to his work at the College. She described him as hard-working and dedicated to helping others. “He talked about the College all the time and was proud to be President,” she recalled. “He truly enjoyed the students and the people of the community.”
During the month of February, the College has highlighted Black History through College-wide activities and engagement. Student Engagement Coordinator NorQuina Rieves organized all events and looks forward to their growth in the future. “It is no secret that COVID-19 has changed the format of on-campus events and this year’s activities required modification,” Rieves noted. “In the years to come, we look forward to making our ‘Norman Cephus Day of Service’ an activity to be done together on an annual basis.”
When asked about her husband’s legacy and how he would view this day of service in his honor, Eloise Cephus answered without hesitation. “He would be so pleased and proud of this.”
For more information about Shelton State’s Black History Month Celebration, contact NorQuina Rieves at firstname.lastname@example.org.