The classic purple logo on the newly renovated gym floor inside Shorter University’s Winthrop-King Centre speaks volumes about one company’s investment in Shorter’s SUForward Campaign and offers encouragement to students as they work to move forward with their dreams.
The gym floor renovation was made possible through gifts from Calhoun-based Nance Industries. On Thursday, February 24, Shorter will host a dedication ceremony to honor donors Carol and Bob Nance and their son, Mike Nance. The ceremony will be held during halftime of the Hawks men’s basketball game; tip-off is at 7:30 p.m.
“We are delighted to have Carol, Bob and Mike Nance’s friendship and support for this renovation project,” said Shorter University President Dr. Don Dowless. “We also want our students to know the story of Nance Industries and how one woman’s vision and determination has led to the development of the leading woman-owned flooring business in our nation. Our students can learn much from Carol Nance and her legacy as an entrepreneur.”
Nance Industries, originally Nance Carpet & Rug, first started in 1972 with the dream and determination of Carol Nance, when as a young mother she turned carpet scraps into quality rugs. Her journey as a woman business owner began at a time when it was not popular for women in the work force, but she was determined to rise above her poor upbringing and provide a good life for her family.
Today, Carol, along with her husband Bob Nance, has grown the company from a small cut rug operation to now operating in five manufacturing plants spread across the north end of Calhoun, Georgia. With the help of second and third generation family members, Nance Industries is now the largest woman-owned flooring business in the United States; offering its flooring and services to major home centers, retailers, contractors, and more.
A video on Nance Industries’ website captures Carol’s encouragement for other women who want to move forward to success. “It is challenging being a woman in the floor covering industry,” she said. “If a woman came to me that had a dream, but she was being told that she couldn’t do it, I would tell her, ‘Don’t listen. If you have a passion or a product that you believe in, it doesn’t matter if you’re told ten times, you keep on because somebody out there will believe in you. You can’t quit. You’ve got to keep on.’ Life is not about doing a job and getting paid for it; it’s about making a difference and following your passion. It’s about connecting to what you believe in and sharing your value with others.”
The Shorter Hawks Athletic Program is dear to the Nances’ heart as son Mike, now Principal at Nance Industries, played basketball at Shorter after transferring from Valdosta State in 1983. He was known for his leadership throughout his playing time. When he ended his career at Shorter in 1985, he was one of the most prolific shooters in school history. He was the all-time single season leader in field goal percentage at 58% and all-time single season free throw percentage leader at 98%, missing just one free throw from the line in the 1985 season. Mike was also voted on to multiple tournament teams and was named MVP in multiple tournaments. He is a member of both the Shorter University and Gordon County Athletic Halls of Fame.
Rapidly approaching its 150th anniversary, Shorter University is a Christ-centered university committed to excellence in education. U.S. News & World Report and The Princeton Review annually include Shorter on their lists of best Southeastern Colleges. The university offers traditional bachelor’s degrees in 40 areas of study, online courses and degree programs, associate’s and master’s programs. Learn more at www.shorter.edu.