Triangle Chatter

Never Marry a Girl Who Doesn’t Like Bob Dylan

Lee Anne NanceThe words of the great philosopher Bob Dylan echo in my mind as I watch the video we are releasing today.

Come gather 'round people wherever you roam and admit that the waters around you have grown. And accept it that soon you'll be drenched to the bone. If your time to you is worth savin', then you better start swimmin' or you'll sink like a stone. For the times they are a-changin'. (The Times They are A-Changin’)

Times in Harnett County have been a-changin’. Since 1997, the former “Blue Jean Capital of the World” has transformed itself into a center of medical innovation. It held on to its proud roots while leveraging its strengths to create new growth. It shook off a painful triple belly punch, gathered itself, and decided to swim rather than sink, benefitting the county, the region and the state.

A big factor in its ability to swim has been Campbell University. Today’s video profiles Campbell University’s latest success story -- its new School of Osteopathic Medicine, which will open in the fall.

This will be the first new medical school in North Carolina in 35 years. The school will help fulfill the vision of a healthy North Carolina and ensure that every resident, particularly those in financial need living in rural areas, has access to quality medical care.

The United States Department of Health and Human Services estimates that the physician supply in the United States will increase by just 7 percent in the next 10 years, while one-third of practicing physicians are expected to retire. In that same span, the number of Americans 65 and older is projected to grow by 36 percent. North Carolina is ranked 34th in the United States in primary care providers, meaning the state would be hit harder by projected physician shortages.

Campbell University is doing something about the physician shortage. The medical school will eventually graduate about 150 students a year, many of whom will practice in rural and underserved regions of the state.

I’m writing this blog in the kitchen of my Harnett County home, which was built on a former tobacco farm. Change. I’m writing this blog using a device that I had never heard of five years ago. Change. I’m sitting at the table where I spent many hours teaching life’s lessons to my grown sons who started out in a high chair at this very table. Change. Everywhere I look I see what Dylan must have seen in 1963 when he first sang his song. 

The times they are a-changin’, and when you watch our most recent video, I think you will agree that change can be quite good. Take a look. I hope it will encourage you as much as it did me! I’m just glad that I taught my boys to never marry a girl who doesn’t like Bob Dylan while I still had their attention.

Author: Lee Anne Nance, Senior Vice President, Research Triangle Region


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