The Tusculum College Board of Trustees voted to extend the contract of current president, Dr. Nancy B. Moody, during its meeting on Saturday, May 18.
Dr. Moody has completed four years as president. The contract extension is for six years.
“Tusculum College is at a very exciting time in its history. I am extremely pleased to have the support of the Board of Trustees as we move together toward long-term planning, the growth of our academic programs and continued and expanded success of our graduates,” said Dr. Moody.
Dr. Kenneth A. Bowman, chair of the Board of Trustees, praised Moody’s efforts in directing the college. “The Board is very, very pleased with the recent history of the college and excited about the leadership she has brought to the institution. We want to see that continue.”
He added, “Having a longer, multi-year contract is a strong signal to the internal and external communities that the Board both appreciates and supports her. It also goes a long way in providing long-term stability for the college.”
Since assuming the college presidency in April 2009 as the first female in Tusculum’s history to hold the position, Moody has faced several challenges. She led the college through a successful reaffirmation of accreditation process with the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges and guided the college towards greater financial stability.
Dr. Moody was recognized by the Board of Trustees in February when she was named the first recipient of the Founders Award, presented by the Tusculum College Board of Trustees. The Founders’ Award, named in memory of Rev. Samuel Doak, Rev. Samuel Witherspoon Doak and Rev. Hezekiah Balch, is presented by the Tusculum College Board of Trustees to recognize those who with integrity, tenacity, commitment, ingenuity and drive have moved Tusculum College forward in serving its students, its community and the world at large.
According to Dr. Bowman, Dr. Moody has embraced the opportunity to encourage faculty, staff, students and volunteers to push Tusculum College forward through creative teaching and learning, responsible stewardship and a renewed commitment to service and civic engagement. She has led Tusculum College into a new era of growth and expansion, in terms of bricks and mortar, academic programs and opportunities, and fiscal responsibility.
Under her leadership programs have been systematically researched and implemented, including programs in nursing, chemistry, criminal justice and a new site in Madison County, N.C. additionally a bachelor of psychology degree and a Master of Business Administration degree were added in the Graduate and Professional Studies program.
The new nursing degree program currently has 24 students and these numbers are expected to grow, with the more than 520 inquiries about next year’s nursing class. Fall semester’s class is expected to be at least 40 students. The fall semester will also see the first class of registered nurses in the RN to BSN program. The BS and RN to BSN degree program in nursing have been incorporated in the scope of accreditation by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges.
Dr. Moody was also instrumental in obtaining a $263,996 grant from the BlueCross BlueShield of Tennessee Health Foundation for the acquisition of a simulation laboratory for use in the nursing program and other health-related programs by Tusculum College students and staff and area community partners.
The simulation lab will be used to produce highly-qualified BSN graduates skilled at clinical decision-making, who will provide safe, competent and improved health care for future generations of Tennesseans
The college, under her leadership, is in an accelerated growth stage. Construction of two new apartment-style residence halls is nearing completion. These facilities are a direct result of a $6 million Community Facilities direct loan from the USDA’s Rural Development Office. Residence hall space has been a pressing need for the college for the past few years due to more than 100 percent occupancy rates in residential housing.
Dr. Moody led efforts to fund a new math and science facility on campus. To that end, a $3.875 million gift towards funding its construction has allowed plans to move forward. The Ronald H. and Verna June Meen Center for Science and Math will be a three-story 50,000 square foot state-of-the-art science and math facility with an estimated total project cost in excess of $15 million.
An additional $39 million Community Facilities direct loan to allow for renovation of current space and construction of the new science and math building has been secured and construction and renovations are expected to begin in the fall.
Partnerships with other institutions are at an all-time high. Tusculum College has arranged articulation and affiliation agreements with regional community colleges and professional schools to both increase enrollment in the bachelor’s degree programs, as well as afford expedited graduate school opportunities for alumni of Tusculum College.
According to Bowman, Dr. Moody has successfully sought new gifts, donors and partnerships in order to ensure the success of the new and existing programs. Working with donors, foundations and government agencies, she has encouraged the investment of millions of dollars into Tusculum College’s growth over the past four years.
“She has engaged with alumni and friends of the College, encouraging their continued interest and support in the institution. She has reminded all of the Tusculum community what it means to be a Tusculum Pioneer,” said Bowman.
Dr. Moody came to Tusculum from Lincoln Memorial University (LMU), where she served as president. She began her career in higher education at LMU as an instructor of nursing. She subsequently served in several roles at LMU, culminating as the dean of the School of Professional Studies before joining the faculty of East Tennessee State University where she was tenured and served as department chair. She served as an associate professor at the University of Tennessee at Knoxville before returning to LMU to assume its presidency. In terms of leadership, Dr. Moody has served as executive director of the Tennessee Center of Nursing, which was funded initially through a grant that she co-authored from The Robert Wood Johnson Foundation.
Dr. Moody is a member of the Board of Trustees of the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges, chair-elect of the NCAA DII South Atlantic Conference, and past member of the NCAA DII President’s Council. She is the past chair of the executive committee for the Tennessee Independent Colleges and Universities Association.