With some of the University’s most distinguished graduates, the Collins and Lowery families have left their mark on The University of North Carolina at Pembroke.
Dedicated – From left football coach Pete Shinnick, Dr. Tyler Collins, Sybil Collins, Dr. Ronnie Lowery, Dr. Jeff Collins, Dr. Jessica Collins and Athletic Director Dan Kenney
The families, who are joined by marriage and more, dedicated the Collins- Lowery Family Hydotherapy Room in the English E. Jones Athletic Center. The facility is a key part of a state-of- the-art athletic training program.
A gift to the First and Ten Campaign for Football and Athletic Excellence earned perpetual naming rights. Dr. Jeff Collins, a 1972 UNCP graduate and long-time community dentist, said the choice of a treatment facility is a good one.
“We thought long and hard about what would be a good thing to put our names on, and a therapy room sounded appropriate for what we do,” Dr. Collins said. “God has been good to our family and so has UNCP.”
The families are literally immersed in UNCP history. Dr. Collins wife, Sybil is a 1976 graduate, their three children – Jessica ’02, Tyler and Ben ’08 – all attended UNCP and went to UNC-Chapel Hill School of Dentistry. Jessica joined the family practice recently, Tyler finished dental school in May and Ben will begin in the fall.
Dr. Collins partner, Dr. Ronnie Lowery, is a 1988 UNCP graduate and is Sybil Collins brother. Dr. Lowery’s wife, Endoria, also spent several semesters at UNCP, then graduated from UNC while Dr. Lowery was finishing dental school there. They have three children, Peter, Maggie, and Tucker. Dr. Lowery said things have changed at his University.
“When I came here, it was a much smaller school,” Dr. Lowery said. “I’m very proud to be affiliated with this University.”
Sybil Collins served two terms on UNCP’s Board of Trustees. Dr. Collins is one of five siblings to attend UNCP. He attended Howard University College of Dentistry.
“This is our way of saying thank you,” he said. “We consider it a privilege to give back.”
Athletic Director Dan Kenney thanked the family and praised the University’s athletic training facility.
“We’re very proud of this family,” Kenney said. “When Jessica played basketball here, she went to a very different training room.”
“This facility makes a difference in the lives of our student-athletes as well as facilitates the study in our Athletic Training Program,” Kenney said. “It compares favorably to the facilities that serve professional sports teams.”
Football coach Pete Shinnick joked that his team uses the facility more than he would like.
“This room is very important to us for treating injuries,” Shinnick said. “It’s also a great recruiting tool. Everyone we bring in here is amazed.
“This community has rallied around UNCP’s athletic program,” the second year coach continued. “We’re very thankful for the support of people like these.”