There are many different paths to success. Just ask Mark Carter.
The youngest of seven children from Alamance County, NC, he married Dawn, his high school sweetheart. Once married, they both joined the Marines, heeding her father’s advice to learn a skill in the military. The couple trained at the 29 Palms Marine Corps base in California and spent most of their enlisted time at Marine Corps Air Station Cherry Point in Havelock, NC, as electronic technicians.
They returned home after four years of honorable service. Dawn enrolled at UNC Greensboro to study interior architecture and history, and Mark paid a visit to Dr. William Easter, a professor in electrical engineering at NC State, to ask for his help.
The Marine Corps had changed him; he was more focused and mature. Not only had he learned a lot about electronics but a great deal about himself as well.
“I’m a veteran,” he told Easter.
“My service has prepared me for greater challenges. Would you give me an opportunity?”
Mark Carter completed his electrical engineering degree and worked for three companies before starting his own electrical contracting company in Raleigh. Wells Global installs backup power systems for federal agencies, including the Federal Aviation Administration and the Department of Defense and employs 38 people, including several NC State engineers.
The Carters decided to endow a scholarship that would support an undergraduate engineering student who is also a veteran, preferably one interested in electrical engineering. They named the scholarship after Mark Carter’s mother, Mary Gammon Carter, a tough textile worker who left a legacy of hard work and strong family values.
Mark Carter credits his mother, who instilled discipline, a little stubbornness and the ability to work hard, for his career success.
“The military gave me the confidence, and NC State gave me an opportunity to prove myself,” he said.