November 24, 2005

Training Mathematics and Science Teachers
Crisis Looms in the Future

November 22, 2005 - Norrine Noonan, Professor of Science and Mathematics at the College of Charleston, gave a dynamic and enlightened presentation of the value of science and mathematics in today's world and of the great shortcomings being experienced in our ability as a nation to teach these areas.

A recent recipient of the NASA Public Service Medal, Norrine came to the college in 2003 from Florida Technical College, where she was Vice President for Research. She has also been an Assistant Director of Research for the Environmental Protection Agency.

At the outset of her talk she thanked our Rotary for its support of our own Ambassadorial Scholar, Stephanie Wheeler, who addressed us a week ago, and whom Norrine helped train in biology at the College of Charleston.

Looking at the broad picture of deficiencies in the training of Mathematics and Science teachers, Norrine cited the financial reality that a teacher in Charleston with a Master's Degree and 20 years of experience can earn $53,000. By contrast a brand new MBA graduate can enter the world of work at a salary between $70,000 and $100,000. It is no wonder then that many college students enter the field of medicine, but few are entering the pure sciences of chemistry, physics and biology? Many potential scholars are steered towards the major research universities, while few are encouraged to go to the colleges who train teachers. Who then will be there to train the scientists, researchers, and doctors of the future?

The solution requires more than money. The top college professors of today must be teaching the entry level science courses to drive home the importance of mathematics and science if America is to maintain its position as an international leader.

Reported by Fred Sales, Keyway Committee

November 18, 2005

Sam Hoerter - Charleston Airport Update
Q and A Session Answers Rotarians Questions

November 15, 2005: Sam Hoerter of the Charleston International Airport was at Tuesday's meeting to give Rotarians information about what is happening at the airport. Mr. Hoerter first commented that experience had taught him Rotarians did not usually tend toward shyness and that there seemed to be no end to questions and discussion on the subject of airlines and airports so he thought he would offer to conduct a question and answer session rather than a presentation.

Anticipating the first question, Mr. Hoerter beat the group to the punch by announcing that the parking garage would open on Sunday, November 20. He further offered that the garage is an exceptional facility. The next question requested that Mr. Hoerter share his thoughts about how the downturn in the airline industry might affect Charleston. Sam responded that the Charleston airport intentionally minimized contractual requirements of the airlines in order to make it easy for airlines to come and go. By doing so, Charleston would always be served with a new airline when one departed . This has proved to be the case for 20 years.

Mr. Hoerter next answered the question about why air fares to NYC were so much higher in Charleston than in Myrtle Beach. In responding, he attributed the high fares between Charleston and New York to the increasing wealth in the community as people move here who are willing to pay those higher fares. Charleston air fares to NYC are about a third more than the national average. On the other hand, Hoerter pointed out, the airport that can command high fares will always be attractive to new carriers which, in turn, will assure that Charlestonians always have air transportation available when they need it.

Because of the continuing and obvious interest in this topic with no lack of questions, Mr. Hoerter promised President Earl that he would return to our club at a later date to cover the subject in greater depth .

By Helen Harloe, Keyway Committee

November 11, 2005

Clean Water Worldwide

November 8, 2005 : Molly Greene, a fellow Rotarian, shared the wonderful things that Water Missions International has been doing to help people have clean water, which is so necessary to help both abroad and in the United States. As you know, providing clean and safe drinking water is one of the major focuses of Rotary.

Molly shared with us, along with some great pictures, the accomplishments that Rotary has helped make and provide water systems to underdeveloped countries and even to the Hurricane victims in the Gulf. Her husband and fellow Rotarian, George Greene, has created and Water Missions has installed 248 portable water systems. 108 went to Tsunami victims alone.

Not only was it good to know the magnitude of the impact of the water systems, but it was also great to understand how the system came about. The first system, which we saw pictures of, was designed in six days after Hurricane Mitch in 1998. From that time, their mission has grown exponentially. Currently, they have over 50 systems in Srilanka 9 of which support a refuge camp of 20,000 people. Living Water Treatment System is transportable and can provide a continuous supply of safe clean drinking water for a community up to 3,000.

Molly showed a number of pictures of the Gulf area that chronicle devastation brought by Hurricane Katrina. Her observation was, "Everything is as bad in Mississippi as it was in Srilanka." Seeing a comparison of pictures of Tsunami devastation and Katrina was very telling. Systems were designed and built within 6 days of Katrina hitting. We saw pictures of the volunteers that went down to help with not only the systems, but also other relief efforts. If you would like to volunteer for assisting with Katrina relief OR in the future, go to

About 33 percent of the world's population does not have access to reliable sources of clean water, and millions die each year due to diseases spread by contaminated water.
We would like to thank both George and Molly for the great presentation and even greater efforts to provide clean drinking water and support for Rotary's mission.

By Wayne Outlaw

November 4, 2005


November 1, 2005 : SHAWN JENKINS, president and founder of, started a so called "" company in Charleston five years ago with himself and a partner. By the end of the year, 18 persons were employed and today the company has 250 employees and is growing briskly.

A graduate of Geneva College in Beaver Falls, Pa. in the field of aviation, the Daytona Beach, Florida native began his working career as a commercial airline pilot. All the signs for starting his new venture were stacked against him: it was the wrong time, Charleston was the wrong place, there could be no financing available. But by the end of the first year he purchased a 31,000 SF former Walmart in Mt. Pleasant and the specialized software company took off from there.

The thrust of the company is to write software to create a single website from which individuals can transfer basic data to other settings. The goal is to tremendously reduce hard copy paperwork. When Blue Cross/Blue Shield of South Carolina came on board the company was well underway with a major focus on the health care industries.

As the fifth year comes to a close the company has a new 140,000 SF building on the drawing boards to be constructed on Daniel Island . They expect to spend a half million dollars in the next year on recruiting alone.

In many respects the company has been radical in its enthusiasm to grow with Shawn cheering the company on and literally ringing a gong at the work place when a new client comes on board. The company's creed is two fold: Have respect for each individual. Stress an anticipation of future service. Clients are visited regularly as the company strives to offer new techniques to solve age old problems. 311 new clients were brought on board in the past 4 weeks.

Putting their technology to work for themselves, major contracts are prepared and "signed" electronically. He credits the Federal government as being way ahead of private industry by enabling the legality of electronic contract services.

The company operates with virtually no formal salespersons, but company representatives are constantly going to the clients to provide orientation to the new programs.

In response to questions from the floor:
Initial financing was through mortgages and loans, but major investors came along and joined the board.
Recruiting qualified programs is an ongoing challenge. Locally there are enough masters level applicants, but there is no local Ph. D. level pool. They have established good relationships with SC colleges and universities but are also recruiting nationwide.
They do not anticipate outsourcing work overseas.
They are looking at Brazil as their next marker
The company is very pleased to be in Charleston, but it is a conservative environment which does not quickly take to new ideas. They have dealt with this by emphasizing personal hospitality and stressing the point: "Do what you say you are going to do!"

Reported by Fred Sales, Keyway Committee