“Growing Our Own”: Krista Lewis

Written by Olivia Gillespie – Foundation Intern, Spring 2021

Krista Lewis is currently the Advancement Specialist for the Advancement Office here at Sampson Community College (SCC). Lewis started out at SCC as a student before she was an employee. She was born and raised in Clinton and graduated from Clinton High School in 2014. Lewis knew that after high school that she wanted to attend SCC. In 2016, Lewis graduated from SCC with degrees in Business Administration and Accounting. Lewis has experienced SCC from the view of student and employee.

As a student, Lewis says she was able to get to know her instructors and classmates well. She believes that the small class sizes at SCC allowed her to thrive.

“I thoroughly enjoyed attending SCC. The atmosphere was welcoming, and the small classes allowed for a more interactive learning experience. You could actually have productive conversations with your instructors and build relationships with them,” Lewis stated about her time at SCC as a student.

Lewis knew that when she began to work at SCC that it would be an opportunity to better herself. She began working at SCC in 2017 in the Business Office. While with the Business Office, she worked as a Cashier/Business Office Assistant. Soon after, Lewis began working as the Purchasing Agent for the Business Office in 2019. In December of 2020, Lewis transitioned to the Advancement Office and SCC Foundation, to assume her current role as Advancement Specialist.

“Krista is such a great coworker. I love being able to bounce ideas off of her, work through complex issues with her, and learn from her. We’re excited she’s a part of our team,” Public Information Officer and Marketing Coordinator, Cheyenne Davis shared.

As the Advancement Specialist, Lewis has the duties of conducting the non-profit accounting for the Foundation, accomplishing administrative work, such as the writing and sending of letters to donors and working with local school counselors for the scholarships given by the Foundation. 

Lewis recognized how Lisa Turlington, Dean of Advancement and Executive Director of the Foundation, has played a huge part in influencing her in the direction she wanted to take her career. Turlington has been able to guide her since taking on her role in the Advancement office.

Lewis added, “Since I’ve joined the Foundation, I have had many opportunities to practice what I learned while in the Business Office.”

Turlington says Lewis has been an asset to the team since day one.

Turlington shared, “It is pleasure working with Krista in the Advancement office. She is a systems thinker with a knack for improving the efficiency of processes. Krista has strong communication skills and knows how to solve problems. We are lucky to have her at SCC!”

Lewis is currently working on her Bachelor’s in Business Administration and Law from Western Carolina University. She is taking her classes for this degree fully online. While at Western Carolina University, Lewis has enjoyed her law classes and learning experience. Lewis believes that going back to Western Carolina University at this time in her life, with the resources she has access to, has saved her from accumulating student debt.

“My biggest thing as a student is not having student debt. You have so many young people that go off to college and rack up a bunch of debt. Then they have that weighing on them for years. When you start with community college, you can achieve the same first-two-years of education and then take advantage of the opportunities to earn a bachelors. I was able to attend SCC for two years and later transfer to WCU where I took advantage of the NC Promise,” Lewis commented.

NC Promise reduces tuition at specific universities to $500 per semester for students who qualify. Three universities offer the NC Promise including, Western Carolina University, Pembroke University, and Elizabeth City State University. For Krista Lewis, her journey to earning a four-year degree began with Sampson Community College.

The education Lewis earned from SCC paved the way to a successful career in her field of study. Through working in the Business Office and the Advancement Office, Lewis has been able to bring what she learned while a student at SCC. As a former student and now professional, Lewis understands how vital Sampson Community College was to her success.

“If I had it to do over again, I would still choose the same path for myself which started with SCC,” Lewis confirmed.

Now, by working with the SCC Foundation, Lewis works to helps students gain scholarships to alleviate the burden of paying for college. She now has a greater appreciation for what the SCC Foundation contributes to the student body and community. Being a student and an employee of Sampson Community College has allowed her to have two perspectives. Lewis will only grow in the position that she is in now at Sampson Community College.

About Sampson Community College: Sampson Community College is a member of the North Carolina Community College System, located in Clinton, NC in Sampson County. The college offers many programs to include two-year degrees, college transfer, continuing education and workforce development options, and early college education.

In the year 2017, Krista Lewis became the author of her very own book called “Uncertain, but Faithful”. (Courtesy Photo)