Brad Ives ’82 knows how NCSSM enriched his life. Now his twins are sharing that experience.
Grateful for opened doors
For Brad Ives ‘82, the connections to North Carolina School of Science and Mathematics run three generations deep. He left the small rural town of Brevard, in western North Carolina, to join the first class of NCSSM students. His father, Bill Ives, a former member of the North Carolina House of Representatives, served on the school’s board of trustees until his death in 2011. Brad has also served as a Trustee and now serves as a member of the NCSSM Foundation’s Board of Directors. His sister, Page Ives Lemel, has held her father’s seat on the board since 2011. And this fall, Brad’s twins Emily and Lawton Ives (pictured below) entered NCSSM as members of the Class of 2017
“It’s a little surreal,” Ives says of having his kids attend NCSSM. “Of course the place is so different from when I went there…but ultimately my kids are having the same experience that I had. The level of friendships they’re making is just phenomenal, and that’s what I experienced.
“In a lot of ways, the school comes at such a magic time in your life. You can talk about academics while you’re standing in line in the cafeteria. You can’t really do that in college — it’s just not cool as you get older.”
At NCSSM, Ives won the Morehead Scholarship to attend UNC-Chapel Hill cost-free. After law school, his career has spanned the fields of law, finance, and renewable energy. He serves now as associate vice chancellor for campus enterprises and chief sustainability officer at UNC-Chapel Hill. “To this day, Science and Math has opened a lot of doors. I just got out of a meeting where my boss was introducing me to new members of our Board of Trustees. The last thing she said was, ‘And Brad was a Morehead Scholar and he went to Science and Math.’ I’m 51 years old and that still carries a lot of weight.”
Ives gives to the NCSSM Foundation because “in many ways I’m paying it back for the opportunities I’ve had,” he says. Our state is starting to reap the benefits of having the foresight to educate students who return here to conduct important research, launch businesses, and otherwise improve the state, he says. “And I’m paying it forward to help make the school a better place, for my children and for everyone in North Carolina.”