Freshman and transfer students from Tusculum College will be doing community service work across Greeneville, Mosheim and Greene County on Thursday, Sept. 13, as the college observes its traditional Nettie Fowler McCormick Service Day.
The day honors the memory and altruistic way of life of Nettie Fowler McCormick, widow of reaper inventor Cyrus McCormick, who was a 19th century supporter and advocate of Tusculum College. The McCormicks, staunch Presbyterians from Chicago, learned of Tusculum College through Tusculum graduates who attended their McCormick Theological Seminary in Chicago, and became donors to the Northeast Tennessee school.
Nettie McCormick is recognized as the college’s first Benefactor, a term that in Tusculum usage denotes a donor whose cumulative gifts total at least $1 million. Nettie McCormick funded construction of several of Tusculum’s historic structures, including Haynes Hall, Rankin Hall, Welty-Craig Hall, Virginia Hall, and McCormick Hall, which is named after the McCormick family.
McCormick Day, now often informally called Nettie Day at the college, began as a day of cleaning the campus in reflection of Nettie McCormick’s insistence on clean living environments. The day has evolved to take on a more generalized community service emphasis.
Work done by students this year will take place on the campus itself, in the Tusculum College museums and in the cleaning of Frank Creek, which runs through part of the college grounds.
Elsewhere across Greene County, work such as landscaping, cleaning, painting, washing, and construction work will take place at Camp Creek Elementary School, the Child Advocacy Center, the Crumley House Brain Injury Rehabilitation Center, Habit for Humanity, Highway 11-E, the Tabernacle Mission Soup Kitchen, Voices for Pets and the Wesley Cemetery, among other locales. Various faculty members are assigned to oversee the student work.
McCormick Day activities are conducted under the auspices of the Center for Civic Advancement at Tusculum College.
Tusculum College, the oldest college in Tennessee and the 28th oldest in the nation, is a civic arts institution committed to developing educated citizens distinguished by academic excellence, public service and qualities of Judeo-Christian character. About twenty-eight hundred students are enrolled on the main campus in Greeneville and nine off-site locations in East Tennessee. The academic programs for both traditional-aged students and working adults served through the Graduate and Professional Studies program are delivered using focused calendars whereby students enroll in one course at a time.