Archive | November, 2009

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Tusculum College alumni return to campus for Homecoming activities

Posted on 23 November 2009 by eestes@tusculum.edu

afternoonteaMore than 200 alumni returned to campus on October 30-31 for Homecoming 2009, “Tradition Never Graduates.”

Alumni participated in such activities as a golf tournament, an afternoon tea hosted by new President Nancy B. Moody and her husband, Tom, at the President’s House, Homecoming parade through campus and a memorial walk held at Tusculum Park, as well as tasted some spicy dishes during the campus chili cook-off.

Homecoming also included visits to local attractions such as Myers Pumpkin Patch and Corn Maze, owned and operated by alumna Vera Ann Myers, class of 1987, and an addition to this year’s slate of activities, a trip to Bright’s Zoo in Jonesborough.

brightzoo_trip“It is gratifying to see so many of our former students return to revisit old haunts, reconnect with friends and honor the feelings of home that are so vivid with many when they return to their Alma Mater,” said Moody.

During a dinner the evening of October 30, three former student-athletes were inducted into the College’s Sports Hall of Fame. Inducted were Ricardo Colclough, one of the College’s most decorated football players formerly playing in the National Football League for the Kansas City Chiefs and a member of the class of 2004; Lesley Murray, the best women’s tennis player in school history and member of the class of 2004, and class of 1994’s Kenny Hughes, a stellar pitcher for the baseball team in the 1990s.

sports_inducteesIn the months leading up to Homecoming, alumni had the opportunity to nominate fellow alumni for honors or recognize faculty and staff members who have made significant contributions to the College. Presented during the annual Alumni Association meeting were the National Alumni Recognition Award to Athletic Director and Head Football Coach Frankie DeBusk and the Pioneer Award to Dr. Jack Hennessen, a 1945 graduate of Tusculum who had a distinguished career in the military and as an orthopedic surgeon. Hennessen has been a long-time supporter of his alma mater and has served on the College’s Board of Trustees.

pioneer_awardThe National Alumni Recognition Award is selected by a vote of the alumni and bestowed on those individuals who have made outstanding contributions to the College. Award winners have excelled during their service to Tusculum College by demonstrating a commitment to the students and the academic programs.

The Pioneer Award is presented each year to an outstanding alumnus or alumna, in recognition of outstanding or meritorious achievement in his or her chosen field; for distinguished service to church, community, country and humanity and for continuing and loyal service to Tusculum College.

More than 40 golfers participated in the annual Alumni Golf Tournament. This year’s top prize winners in the Gross Division were: Bobby Bowers, class of 1959; Joe D’Auria, class of 1959; Jack Kilday, class of 1957, and Bill Smith. Winners in the Net Division were Howard Slagle, class of 1961; Santo Cicirello, class of 1963; Bob Riser, class of 1962, and Steve Richey.

debusk_awardOn campus, the Student Alumni Association hosted the 2nd Annual Chili Cook-off. This year awards were presented for both the Best Chili and Showmanship. The staff of the Graduate and Professional Studies department took both trophies, after tallying 150 votes. They beat out a very strong field of competitors that included the 2008 chili champs, the Athletic Department, as well as the Office of Student Affairs, the Facilities Department, the History Department and the Office of Institutional Advancement.

This year a panel of judges was used to determine the winner for best chili. Their votes, which carried 60 percent of the overall points, along with people’s choice, which was 40 percent, determined the overall winner. The Showmanship award is voted on entirely by the people, and Graduate and Professional Studies, with their “Virginia Hall House of Corrections” theme, was the fan favorite.

golfwinners1Judges this year were Director of Campus Security Wayne Murphy, alumna Jackie Paxton Rose, class of 1975, and current student and reigning Miss Greene County Candace Babb of Greeneville.

“Homecoming is just that, a chance for our alumni to come home to Tusculum College,” said Mary Bartel, associate director of alumni and parent relations. “It was wonderful to have so many back on campus and still showing their support for their alma mater.”

golf_winners2For more information on the Tusculum College alumni programs or Homecoming 2010, contact Bartel at 423-636-7303.

To view photos from Homecoming, please visit the Tusculum Flickr page.

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A whirlwind of activity in Florida – three alumni events in three days

Posted on 23 November 2009 by eestes@tusculum.edu

naples_groupTusculum College’s alumni in Florida were the focus of a trip earlier this month that featured three alumni events in three days.

The gatherings were as diverse as the alumni who attended – one was at an alumnus’ home, another found alumni gathering at a popular restaurant and a yet another group gathered aboard a yacht moored in a harbor. And at all the gatherings, alumni had the opportunity to meet and get to know the College’s new president, Dr. Nancy B. Moody. Susan D. Vance ’91, interim vice president of institutional advancement, helped provide an update of the latest happenings at Tusculum College.

orlando_groupOn November 11, alumni gathered at the home of Bob Kleinertz ’76 and his wife, Ginny Alexander, in Naples, Fla. The couple were gracious hosts of a group of alumni who included Larry Reynolds ’60, Ian Baird ’60 and Tony Heberton ’66 and their guests.

The next alumni event was in Orlando, Fla., at Fleming Steak House, hosted by Dr. William Story ’72. Joining Dr. Story for the event were alumni Kyle Becker ’01, Harry and Dorothy Brier ’49 ’50, Dallas and Theresa Maddron ’50 ‘50, William Self ’59 and Earle and Meldrum Shotwell ’47 ’45, along with their guests.

lauderdale_groupThe third event in Florida was in Ft. Lauderdale where alumni were the guests of Scott M. Niswonger ’87 H’06 on the “Scott Free” yacht moored in the harbor. Attending were alumni Britton Garrett ’01, Darren Gentry ’99, Marc Woonton ’94 and Todd Woonton ’91. The alumni got an extra treat, the opportunity to see the world’s largest cruise ship, Royal Caribbean’s Oasis of the Seas, that docked in Fort Lauderdale that day from its maiden voyage from Finland.

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Alumni gather in Asheville

Posted on 23 November 2009 by eestes@tusculum.edu

asheville_groupAlumni took the opportunity to renew old friendships, reminisce about days gone by at Tusculum College and make some new friends at a recent alumni event in Asheville.

A few days after Homecoming, alumni gathered on November 3 in Asheville, N.C., at the Deerfield Retirement Community. Although some of the alumni had made the trip over the mountain the weekend prior to attend Homecoming activities, they were pleased to have the opportunity to again greet old friends and meet with those who were unable to make it to Greeneville.

The alumni enjoyed a nice dinner and had the opportunity to meet Tusculum College’s new president, Dr. Nancy B. Moody. The alumni also visited with a current student and active member of the Student Alumni Association, Glenn Vicary. Vicary is a senior who is majoring in pre-pharmacy and is a member of the men’s golf team.

Attending the event were Judith Koforth Domer ’61, Sara Lippard Hoyt ’45, Nancy Lippard Lalley ’48, Valdo Moncada ’41, Jane Lovvorn Morse ’77, Ruth Lippard Smith ’42 and George and Evelyn Tripp Westbrook ’49 4’49.

Also attending were Susan D. Vance ’91, interim vice president of institutional advancement; Mary Bartel, associate director of alumni and parent relations, and Cody Greene ’08, coordinator for development and alumni relations.

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“Beauty and the Beast” brings sell-out crowds to Annie Hogan Byrd Auditorium

Posted on 23 November 2009 by eestes@tusculum.edu

The November production of Disney’s “Beauty and the Beast” was one of the most successful in Arts Outreach’s history, recording two sell-outs on the final weekend of performances as well as almost-full houses for the other performances.

The demand for tickets was brisk as the musical drew audiences from not just the Greeneville community but the region.

A cast of more than 100 brought a world full of whimsy and romance to the stage. The performances improved with each outing as the actors told the story of the young prince (the Beast) and his household, who are under an enchantress’ curse until the prince learns to truly love, and how he discovers true love from the beautiful Belle. As with any love story, there are complications such as the village’s hunter and local hero’s pursuit of Belle as a suitor.

beautyandbeast_alumniDefinite crowd pleasers were the musical’s numerous show-stopping tunes such as “Be Our Guest,” choreographed by Kim Berry, which featured a stage full of dancing napkins, plates and silverware, and “The Wolves,” featuring choreography by Ben Sparks and Elizabeth Ruggiero that created an exciting mix of classical ballet with martial arts.

Audiences noticed one difference to the popular Disney film and other stage productions as the show begins not with actors but with puppets created by Greenevillian Judith Flohr ‘94, which allows the introduction of village children and the enchantress.

Director Marilyn duBrisk brought together a cast of many of the most well known acting talent in Greeneville and the region as well as some newcomers in roles such as Emily Lowe as Belle and Dan Burkey as the Beast/Prince. The cast includes actors from the region, such as Morristown and the Tri-Cities, and one cast member from North Carolina is crossing the mountain to be involved. Eighteen different schools are represented among the cast including Tusculum College, Walters State Community College and East Tennessee State University and 15 public schools.

Alumni in the cast included Angela Alt Bride ’95 and B.J. Roberts ‘’04, as well as Wess duBrisk, who served many years as a professor of mass media before retiring a few years ago.
Angie Southerland Clendenon ‘69 is serving as musical director and coordinating the show’s orchestral accompaniment.

An army of volunteers have been hard at work preparing creative, colorful costumes under the direction of Barbara Holt and building the fantastical world of Belle and the Beast under the direction of Frank Mengel, stage and technical director. Garry Renfro, who has designed the production’s distinctive marketing pieces, has also shared his artistic talents in creating the village and town sets.

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Knoxville Regional Center hosts successful Opportunity Fair

Posted on 23 November 2009 by eestes@tusculum.edu

handshakeOn October 22, Tusculum College’s Knoxville Regional Center held its first Opportunity Fair. The event provided an opportunity for students to practice networking and talk with potential employers.

Featuring 27 outside vendors representing businesses from the area and four representing the College, the Opportunity Fair also allowed Tusculum alumni and former students to showcase what they are doing today.  Many of the College’s community business partners participated and showcased their goods and services.

According to Cliff Gjertson, site director for Tusculum’s Knoxville Regional Center, the event was a success.  “Students were enthusiastic about making connections with people who would positively impact their next career move,” he said. In addition the participating businesses, such as SunTrust and State Farm, cultivated their business contacts and were able to interact with potential customers as well as future employees.

Gjertson said the feedback from the event was extremely positive, and the Knoxville Regional Center hopes to have a similar event in the coming months.

The Knoxville Regional Center previously held a workshop for students that addressed the value of networking and the basics of how to be a good networker and was held as a pre-cursor to the Opportunity Fair so that students would be prepared.

For more information on Tusculum College’s Graduate and Professional Studies program or upcoming events at the Knoxville Regional Center, contact Gjertson at 5008 or email cgjertson@tusculum.edu.

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International opportunities continue to increase for Tusculum faculty, students

Posted on 23 November 2009 by eestes@tusculum.edu

Tusculum College’s commitment to increasing opportunities for students to study abroad during their academic careers has been evident in the past few months with faculty trips to Italy and Costa Rica and trips planned to Europe and Belize in the spring.

A group of five professors traveled to Northern Italy this summer while three professors embarked on an expedition to Costa Rica. The faculty members investigated ways to integrate an international perspective into their curriculum as well as possible trips with students abroad.

Traveling to Italy were Dr. Greg Church, associate professor of biology;  Dr. Troy Goodale, assistant professor of political science; Dennis Lingerfelt ’02?, assistant professor of computer science, and Craig Wright, assistant professor of business administration.

According to Church, the 11-day, cross-disciplined trip included dramatic landscapes, varied cultures and more than 5,000 years of history, art and architecture. “Italy is an entirely different culture in the north and in the south,” said Church. The north is very Germanic and both German and Italian are common languages, with the exception of Venice, which is a very traditional Italian city.”

The trip introduced the faculty group to a small but diverse region of Northeast Italy, including Merano, Bolzano, Arabba and Venice. “There were abundant opportunities to learn about history from Roman times to the present, as well as the progression of art and architectural styles throughout these historical periods,” Church said.

The group observed firsthand the diverse cultures currently living in this region as well.  Italian language and traditions predominated in the cities of Mestre and Venice, while German language and Tyrolean culture dominate Merano and Arabba in the Alto-Adige region. He added that the ancient Ladin culture still exists in a few isolated alpine valleys near Arabba. This culture is believed to pre-date Latin and has its own unique traditions, costumes and mythology.

It was important for the group to focus on what they wanted to bring back from their experience to share with others at the College and to utilize in possibly planning future student trips. As a group, they defined the main learning outcomes of this trip as gaining insights into the history, culture, educational systems, healthcare systems, transportation infrastructure, nature, art, and architecture of this fascinating region.

For Lingerfelt, this was his first trip out of the United States and a tremendous learning experience that he said broadened his horizons and makes him a better educator and advisor for students considering international travel.

“Before I couldn’t really advise students on these types of opportunities – I didn’t have that experience. Now I have some experience and knowledge to pass along, and I feel much more adept at discussing with students,” he said.

In addition, Lingerfelt brought back real-world experiences to share with his computer science classes. “Language is a barrier not only in spoken word, but with keyboards,” said Lingerfelt, “There is some loss in functionality when a “c” in Italian is not equal to a “c” in English. He has already incorporated this into his classroom discussions on standardization.

While the five professors were in Italy, three were exploring a different environment in a different part of the world – Costa Rica. Gaining insight into the biodiversity, diverse geography, stable democracy and diversified economy of Costa Rica were Dr. Ian VanLare, associate professor of biology; Dr. John Paulling, professor of mathematics and Amy Brooks, assistant professor of athletic training.

costarica“During this trip we looked at diversity both biological and culturally in a variety of places within Costa Rica,” said VanLare. The participants visited both ends of the Central Valley, traveled through lowland Caribbean habitats, stayed at a cloud forest while visiting several nature reserves and visited two active, but different types of volcanoes.

“We stayed at both ends of the Central Valley,” said VanLare, “And, we visited the northern town of La Fortuna where they have an active volcano and then went on to Monte Verde, which interestingly was settled by American Quakers. Also on the group’s travel agenda were two hydroelectric plants. These plants provide much of Costa Rica’s and neighboring Nicaragua’s electricity, said VanLare.

In addition, the group traveled to Jaco, a town located on the Pacific Ocean, where they observed how the Tico (a term for the native inhabitants of Costa Rica) society struggles with the effects of ecotourism.

“The strength of the trip revolved around its participants,” said VanLare. And while each of the three faculty members represented different academic disciplines, VanLare said each was enthusiastically engaged in all the planned activities and participated in activities individually.

Brooks, in her job as athletic trainer, works with a number of Tusculum’s international students, many of whom are natives of Central and South America. “I see the adjustments these students have to make in coming to an American school and adjusting to the American lifestyle,” said Brooks. “I wanted to see where they come from and be able to help those athletes get over the culture shock.”

VanLare, who has traveled before to Costa Rica with students, would consider doing so again, as he feels it allows students to experience ecosystems that do not exist in East Tennessee, as well as exposes them to another culture.

“I can see the international experience incorporating language, science, service and history, and my long-term goal would be to take students not for a trip, but for a semester of study,” said VanLare.

Students are going to have the opportunity to travel abroad this spring as three trips have been approved.

In March, 10 Tusculum College students and two professors are making plans to visit the art, architecture and history of Renaissance and Reformation Europe when they take their classroom to Europe in March.

Because of the uniqueness of the “one class at a time” block schedule offered at Tusculum College, students enrolled in “Politics and Religion in Renaissance and Reformation Europe” will spend two weeks in traditional class work and then take their classroom on the road to see firsthand where the Renaissance was born and where key historical moments took place.

Leading the trip are Dr. Joel Van Amberg, assistant professor of history, and Dr. James Reid, professor of political science.  “After two weeks of traditional coursework we will travel to Europe to visit some of the major sites, buildings and images associated with the Renaissance and Reformation,” said Van Amberg.“There are historical realities that are sometimes hard to understand without traveling to the location where those realities took place,” he said.

Van Amberg added that in addition to the significant political science, religion and historical topics that they will investigate during the trip, they will also explore the “incredible developments in paintings, sculpture and architecture” that occurred during the Renaissance and Reformation. “There is just no substitute for actually seeing these masterpieces.”

On the itinerary for the trip are visits to Rome and Florence, Italy; Wittenberg, Germany, and Geneva and Zurich, Switzerland. The trip is planned for March and will cover nearly two weeks.

While several of the students are history or political science majors, several others enrolled in the class for the experience of learning the topic first hand and on the original sites were the movements were born.

According to Van Amberg, another positive aspect of the trip is that many of Tusculum’s students have never done any traveling abroad. “This experience will help students and reduce the anxiety associated with international travel. Hopefully it will clear the way for them to take advantage of other travel opportunities offered in the future.”

Another European trip has received recent approval – this one to Great Britain. Dr. Sheila Morton, assistant professor of English, will lead a group of students to study literature in England.

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Tusculum Volleyball, Women’s Soccer earn NCAA tournament bids

Posted on 23 November 2009 by eestes@tusculum.edu

Two Tusculum College teams competed in their respective NCAA Division II tournaments this past month.

volleyballwithlogoFor the first time in school history, the Tusculum College volleyball team has received an at-large bid to the NCAA Division II Tournament. The Pioneers (18-14) were the No. 8 seed in the Southeast Regional and faced top-seed and host Wingate University (34-1) in an opening round match on Friday, Nov. 20. Although the Pioneers fell to Wingate, the team completed its fourth straight winning season.

soccerballThe Women’s Soccer team advanced to the second round of the NCAA tournament in early November. The Pioneers edged Newberry College in the first round of the tournament 2-1, but then fell to in the second round to South Atlantic Conference foe, Carson-Newman College 1-0.

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Tusculum College wins Blood Drive Bowl

Posted on 23 November 2009 by eestes@tusculum.edu

blooddrivebowlBrooke Haymaker, vice president of the Tusculum College Student Government Association, along with Pioneer Pete accepted the Blood Drive Bowl trophy Saturday during halftime of the Tusculum College – Carson-Newman football game. Tusculum won the seventh annual Blood Drive Bowl that benefits Medic Regional Blood Center by collecting 190 pints of blood last week, topping Carson-Newman’s 139 pints. The friendly competition between the colleges is held each year during the week prior to the football game between the two schools. This is the second year in a row that Tusculum has won the event, whose main purpose is to collect much needed blood for use by hospitals in the region. Collections were held not only at the Tusculum campus in Greeneville, but also at the Knoxville and Morristown sites and at the Wal-Mart and K-mart in Greeneville.

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Doak House Museum to host special Christmas event on Saturday, December 5

Posted on 23 November 2009 by eestes@tusculum.edu

The Doak House Museum will be open on Saturday, December 5, for a special Christmas event.

The museum on the Tusculum College campus will be open from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. for this holiday event.

The public is invited to come enjoy some hot cider and explore the historic Doak House Museum, the 19th century home of one of the college’s co-founders, the Rev. Samuel Witherspoon Doak.

A children’s story time will be held at noon and 2 p.m.

While at the museum, visitors can also browse in the museum shop, which will be featuring significant discounts on decorative Christmas items, children’s toys and ornaments. The museum shop will offer some unique gifts such as historic toys and games such as marbles, hooey sticks and quill pens as well as many specialty holiday items: kitchen linens, ornaments and grab bags for $5 (each holding $10-$25 worth of merchandise).

All proceeds from the sales in the shop support the museum education programs of the college’s Department of Museum Program and Studies of Tusculum College; the Doak House Museum and the President Andrew Johnson Museum and Library. “This is a great opportunity to not only purchase some unique gifts at a real savings, but also support the museum’s educational programs,” said Leah Walker, site and events manager.

The Department of Museum Program and Studies is the regional coordinator for National History Day, assisting teachers and students participating in schoolwide events and hosting the regional event. Students from Greene County have advanced to the statewide competition in each of the past seven years, and students have advanced to the national competition six out of the seven years.

The Doak House Museum hosts thousands of school children from East Tennessee each year for a variety of educational programs relating life in the 19th century. The President Andrew Johnson Museum hosts special exhibits and programs for the community. Last month, the museum hosted a special exhibit about archives and held presentations featuring experts sharing ways to preserve personal and family documents, photos, textiles such as quilts and other items.

For additional information, contact the Doak House Museum at 423.636.8445 or e-mail lwalker@tusculum.edu.

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Dr. Troy Goodale named sponsor of Tusculum College’s Alpha Chi National Honor Society

Posted on 18 November 2009 by srichey@tusculum.edu

Dr. Kim Estep, Tusculum College provost and academic vice president, has announced the appointment of Dr. Troy Goodale, assistant professor of political science, as the new faculty sponsor of the Tusculum College chapter of Alpha Chi National Honor Society.

Dr. Goodale is an Oklahoma native who was raised in the Washington, D.C. metropolitan area before moving to East Tennessee during his eighth grade school year. Living in the nation’s capitol began his interest in politics and government.

He received his bachelor’s of arts degree from the University of Tennessee in political science, with a minor in cultural studies that focused on Asian culture. He earned his master’s degree and doctorate in political science, also from the University of Tennessee. 

Dr. Goodale’s dissertation is in the American politics sub-field, examining legislative term limits in state governments. He has published a book on legislative term limits and has run for public office on two occasions. In addition, he has worked in various political organizations and campaigns.

Dr. Goodale taught at the University of Tennessee for more than four years and at Tusculum part-time during 2006-2007, transitioning to a full-time position the following year. He is the department chair of the Political Science Department at Tusculum, as well as a pre-law advisor.

Ron McCallister, director of the School of Arts and Sciences, notes that “Dr. Goodale has played an integral role in a number of academically-centered student initiatives. I am excited about Dr. Goodale’s willingness to serve in a leadership role with Alpha Chi. As the oldest chapter of Alpha Chi in Tennessee, Dr. Goodale inherits leadership in an organization that has a long, rich heritage at our College.”

Alpha Chi is a nationwide honor society established in 1922 to promote academic excellence and exemplary character among college and university students and to honor those who achieve such distinction. Some 300 chapters, located in almost every state and in Puerto Rico, induct more than 11,000 members annually. Being selected for membership is one of the highest academic honors that Tusculum College can offer a student.

To be eligible for membership in Alpha Chi, a student must have achieved junior or senior status and be ranked in the top ten percent of the students in their division.

Some benefits of Alpha Chi membership include recognition as distinguished scholars and members of one of the largest college honor societies in the world. Members may compete for Alpha Chi scholarships, and many employers offer members higher starting salaries after graduation.

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Tusculum College students immerse in service in Tennessee coal country

Posted on 18 November 2009 by eestes@tusculum.edu

eagan_servicelearningThree Tusculum College students recently received a crash course in coal mining and its effects on communities and the environment when they were immersed in service to a small community in East Tennessee near the Kentucky border.

Joshua Folks of Greeneville, Shamale Lee of Burnsville, N.C., and Nikki Van Dine of Columbus, Ohio, traveled with Robin Fife, assistant professor of social science, to Eagan where they worked with the Clearfolk Community Institute as part of a Service-Learning Immersion course. The Clearfolk Community Institute is dedicated to improving the lives of those living in Eagan and to empowering the community’s youth to gain the education they need to lead successful lives.

In Eagan, Fife said, the group found a community that faces both economic and environmental challenges from coal mining. While underground mining had been conducted in the past, coal companies are now involved in mountaintop removal mining in the area around Eagan, which requires less manpower than underground mining. As its name implies, the top of a mountain is blown up in this method of mining to expose the valuable mineral for removal with the remaining earthen material placed in a valley or hollow. The mining has caused such problems for the residents of Eagan as loss of water purity.

Absentee landowners or coal companies own the majority of the land in the community and do not pay local taxes, so there are limited funds to provide services such as adequate road paving or garbage pick-up, she continued. “People struggle to eke out a living and find education.”

Teamwork was one of the lessons of the trip, Lee said as the students worked with Clearfolk Community Institute volunteers, called VIPs (Volunteers in Partnership) by the organization. “I was impressed by the teamwork,” he said. “We melded together well.”
One of the primary projects of the students was helping in a project to map the community. No map exists showing property lines for the Eagan area, and the Clearfolk Community Institute is trying to complete one on its own. The students used Geographical Information System units to map properties in the community.

“We measured using a landmark of importance (to the residents),” said Van Dine. “Some had a nice garden or a tree they had planted a long time ago. What we did will provide a building block for future VIPs.”

In addition to the mapping, the students provided a variety of service to the residents. “We swept leaves, cut trees and fixed a chicken coup,” said Foulks. “We cooked greens for a community dinner. It was a real experience.

“We did anything we could to help them out.”

As they provided service, the students had the opportunity to learn the personal stories of the residents and how their lives have been impacted by the coal mining industry. Foulks told of an older couple they students helped who needed assistance with some of their outdoor chores because the husband was in poor health due to his days as a coal miner. “It was horrible thing to see what they went through,” he said. “Now, they don’t have anything. They don’t have health insurance.”

The students learned about the coal-mining industry in depth, about pollution and environmental issues related to the removal of natural habitat by mountaintop removal mining and about the herbs that the residents in the community grow and use for medicinal purposes. Although most of the roads leading to the mining activities are on private property, there was a public road near one of the areas where mountaintop removal had been done to allow the students to see what the effects are on the landscape.

After the students returned to campus, they prepared policy papers about issues that they found that interested them from the service experience. Foulks focused on cap and trade issues related to acid rain and federal regulation of emissions. Lee wrote about land ownership issues. Van Dine’s paper was about the regulation of ginseng, one of the herbs grown in the region that could provide a source of income for Eagan residents.

The students also proposed ways that the situation in Eagan could be improved, including increasing publicity about top mountain removal mining and its effects, getting more communities involved, continuing to investigate and invest in other energy sources such as geothermal, solar or wind power, and encouraging people to write to their Congressmen about the issue.

As they returned to campus, the students have also worked to open doors to allow one of the youth they met and worked with in Eagan to attend Tusculum.

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Knoxville Regional Center hosts successful Opportunity Fair for students

Posted on 18 November 2009 by srichey@tusculum.edu

On Thursday, October 22, Tusculum College’s Knoxville Regional Center held its first Opportunity Fair. The event provided an opportunity for students to practice networking and talk with potential employers.

Featuring 27 outside vendors representing businesses from the area and four representing the College, the Opportunity Fair also allowed Tusculum alumni and former students to showcase what they are doing today.  Many of the College’s community business partners participated and showcased their goods and services. 

According to Cliff Gjertson, site director for Tusculum’s Knoxville Regional Center, the event was a success.  “Students were enthusiastic about making connections with people who would positively impact their next career move,” he said. In addition the participating businesses, such as SunTrust and State Farm, cultivated their business contacts and were able to interact with potential customers as well as future employees. 

Gjertson said the feedback from the event was extremely positive, and the Knoxville Regional Center hopes to have a similar event in the coming months. 

The Knoxville Regional Center previously held a workshop for students that addressed the value of networking and the basics of how to be a good networker and was held as a pre-cursor to the Opportunity Fair so that students would be prepared.

For more information on Tusculum College’s Graduate and Professional Studies program or upcoming events at the Knoxville Regional Center, contact Gjertson at 5008 or email cgjertson@tusculum.edu.

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