Dr. Joan Pendergast
Chair, Department of Social Work and Title IX Coordinator
When Dr. Pendergast was finishing her Ph.D. in Social Work Education at the University of South Carolina, she dreamed of teaching at a school like Concord. “I have wanted to live in the mountains for as long as I can remember,” she says. In 2007, she accepted a tenure-track position at CU and has found a home here. “The campus community is welcoming and accepting,” she says. Before completing her doctoral degree, Dr. Pendergast was a practicing social worker, valuable experience she shares with her students. “When I speak with students about social work, I explain that this is the best job and worst job you can have,” she says. “It’s very rewarding to see how people can change their lives, and it can be discouraging when these changes do not come.” Dr. Pendergast is dedicated to preparing her students for the realities they’ll face after graduation, and says she enjoys “being a small part of their journey.”
Carli Dotson '16
After graduating from Concord with a degree in Business Administration—emphasis in Administrative Systems and Management—Carli worked in admissions at New River Community College in Dublin, VA and then took a position as an administrative assistant in the Department of Art and Sciences. Currently, she works with first and second year students at the Virginia-Maryland College of Veterinary Medicine in Blacksburg, VA. Concord played an important role in Carli’s life after graduation, providing her knowledge she took into the workforce.
“Concord helped me by giving me valuable life lessons, experiences, and knowledge to be successful,” Carli says. “Most importantly, I made connections and friendships that have been so valuable and rewarding for my life.”
Shawn is a second generation Mountain Lion, but that is only one detail that finalized his decision to choose CU after graduating from Pikeview High School in 2017. The university also had the program of study he wanted, and its location meant Shawn could commute to save money. He is a Business Administration major with concentrations in management and finance. When Shawn isn’t in class, you’ll find him working in the business office as a work-study in the Accounts Payable office. Shawn says the real life experiences that professors share and the work experience he has received at Concord has prepared him for the kind of job he wants when he graduates, one similar to the job he currently does at CU. Education aside, Shawn says his favorite part about Concord is the people. “It felt like home from the time I stepped on the campus in 2017,” Shawn says. “Most of everyone is relaxed and will help out if you are in need.”