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Tickets available for Feb. 14 dinner-dance to benefit Band Program

Tickets available for Feb. 14 dinner-dance to benefit Band Program

Posted on 19 December 2014 by


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Join us in January for alumni events in Johnson City and Jefferson County

Join us in January for alumni events in Johnson City and Jefferson County

Posted on 16 December 2014 by


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Find out what is happening with your fellow alumni

Find out what is happening with your fellow alumni

Posted on 15 December 2014 by








Frances Wade Ostergren ’34 of Sevierville, TN, was honored by U.S. Rep. Phil Roe for her service during World War II recently and celebrated her 103rd birthday on Dec. 12. Frances served as a nurse during World War II and has been a member of American Legion Post 104 for more than 60 years. Roe presented Ostergren with a certificate from Washington, D.C., a small American flag and an ornament. A native of Sevierville, Frances attended Tusculum, and became a teacher, first in Loudon County, TN, before moving to Mississippi where she continued as an educator. Frances enrolled in Duke University to pursue a master’s degree but her financial situation resulted in her leaving school to go to work in Alabama. She then moved to Chicago where she received laboratory technician training at Michael Reece Hospital. Frances was working as a laboratory technician in Jacksonville, FL, when the war began and she joined the Navy WAVES (Women Accepted for Volunteer Emergency Service). She settled in Fitchburg, Mass., after the war and worked there for several years. Moving to New York City, she worked in the Department of Pediatrics at Columbia University Medical Center and while there she met her future husband, Raynor Ostergren. After their marriage and his retirement from the military in 1956, the coupled moved California. During an extended visit to Tennessee to visit her parents, Raynor became ill and died early in 1960. Afterwards, Frances stayed in Sevierville to help care for her parents. As family circumstances permitted, Frances became active in the community. She served on the board of directors of the Sevier County Fair and facilitated the floral exhibits. Frances participated in several bridge clubs and was a charter member of the Sevierville Garden Club. Through her lifelong love of drawing and painting, Frances often traveled out into the countryside in Sevier County to sketch and paint rural scenes and older structures. Most of her artwork is now part of the collection of the King Family Library History Center, part of the Sevier County Library.


U.S. Rep. Phil Roe talks with Frances Ostergren recently as he honored her service in World War II. Photo by Jake Old, courtesy of The Mountain Press.





Leslie Sierra Shelton ’13 and Trey Whitfield ’12 were married on Nov. 15, 2014, at The Blackthorn Club at the Ridges in Jonesborough, TN. Groomsmen included Neill Blakeney ’12, Marquise Snead-Johnson ’11 and Gareth Rowlands ’11. Ushers were Andy Goellner ’13 and Dakota Norton ’14. Hannah Laposky ’12 served as a bridal book attendant and greeter. Following a honeymoon to the Turks and Caicos Islands, the couple is living in Nashville, TN. Leslie is the special education coordinator at Lead Prep Southeast, and Trey is the regional controller of First Call Ambulance Services.






Ronald W. Beers ’70 of Monroe, NC, passed away on November 24, 2014. After graduating from Tusculum, Mr. Beers took a position as a staff accountant with the United States Government Accountability Office (GAO) in Washington, D.C. Thirty-three years later he retired as assistant director of GAO. His work took him all over the country and gave him the opportunity to interact with some of the nation’s finest scientists, physicians and educators. At Tusculum, he served as a lifeguard and a photographer for the College. Survivors include his wife and Tusculum alum, Pamela Rhea Beers ’74.





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Alumni, Pioneer Club events scheduled for early 2015

Alumni, Pioneer Club events scheduled for early 2015

Posted on 15 December 2014 by


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More than 225 receive degrees Saturday at Tusculum College

More than 225 receive degrees Saturday at Tusculum College

Posted on 15 December 2014 by

Graduating from Tusculum College during winter commencement ceremonies were 227 individuals in a ceremony held on Saturday, Dec. 13.

On Saturday 81 students earned Bachelor of Science degrees and 80 earned Bachelor of Arts degrees. In addition 36 graduates earned Master of Arts degrees and 20 received Master of Business Administration degrees.

The new graduates were addressed by Tusculum President Nancy B. Moody, who recognized the hard work of the path to graduation, saying “you have made a commitment and stuck with it to the point that you have forever changed the direction of your life for the better.” Adding, “I am confident that you learned to think critically, not to accept at face value everything you read, hear, or see. You demonstrated your ability to debate ideas and to see both sides of an argument before making judgment. These are a few of the qualities of an educated person.”

She told the group, “May you be fortunate enough to earn in the years ahead, and may you be wise enough to return some of your blessings to those who aspire to follow in your footsteps.”

Two student speakers addressed the graduates, including Jacquelyn Waddell of Greeneville, who received a Bachelor of Arts in psychology.

Waddell spoke of the challenges of adult learners whose lives are already full of family and work responsibilities. She encouraged her fellow graduates to use whatever they have learned, but also take time to enjoy their accomplishment. “This is your moment.”

Also speaking was Martin Jorgensen, a residential sports science major from Beder, Denmark.

Graduation speakers representing the Class of 2014 were Jacquelyn Waddell, left, and Martin Dan Jorgensen.

“Every day is a new beginning,” he told fellow graduates. “I think of the friends I’ve made and the education I’ve earned. All of it can be used as a springboard into the real world.”

He encouraged his fellow graduates to be “like the weather” and not stagnate. “Although you don’t want to change constantly like the weather in East Tennessee, you do want to keep moving if the weather stagnates, you have a drought.”

Mark Stokes, college chaplain, presented a sermon titled “Great Expectations.” He told the audience, “Like beauty and brilliance, we are not responsible for having them, but we are very responsible for what we do with them. Our lives are gifts of God’s grace.”

He added, “Successful life management is a matter of exchanging a life you cannot keep for a life you cannot lose. It is trading the temporary goods of this world for unending, secure treasure. No matter how much or how little you may have in ability, opportunity or wealth, you can manage your life in such a way as to become very rich.”

Among those earning diplomas, by type of degree, were:

Lisa Yvonne Crowder
Alexandra Nichole Dalton
Vikki Hunt Dillard
Lyndsey Renee Elrod
Valerie Savannah Harrell
Kelli Patricia Heard
Toni Michelle Hobby, Honors
Amy Lynn Inman
Kristin Marie Mays, High Honors
Vicky LeAnne McCarter
Rebecca Rankin McKee, Honors
Courtney Bare Miller, Honors
Angela Kay Ott
Lori Paxton Ricker
Mark Anthony Seal
Benjamin Coy Willings

Amy Shyanne Bales
Carrie Michelle Bledsoe, Honors
Christa LeighAnn King, Honors
Charles Arthur Painter, High Honors

Robert William Minton

Emily Campbell
Patricia Ann Carroll
Tonya Mechelle Greenlee
Michelle Hawkins, Honors
Jane Pate Hutton, High Honors
Markus Eugene Jackson, Honors
Lisa Regina Kirk, Honors
Wendy Danielle Robertson
John Harold Rode
Tiffany Dee Rose, High Honors
Stacey Marie Sayne, Honors
Andrew David Traugot, High Honors
Anton V. Tuz, Honors
Vincent Whitright, Honors

Patrice Yolanda Blue
Justin Conley Harvey
Britney Marie Hopkins, High Honors
Lindsay Hope Welch, Honors

Matthew P. Albert
Jeffrey Michael Bowles
Paul Henry Britt Jr.
Lonnie Marc Burns
Dale L. Butler
Kevin Bradley Carter
Angela Marie Daugherty
Christopher Carl Gibbs
Crystal Ann Hill-Fields
Ryan S. Holliday
Sandra Lynn Lawson
Jessica Leach
Jose B. Lopez
Julie Ann Lopez
Michael James McClendon
Michael Ryan Newport
Jennifer Zubko Reynolds
Charles Michael Snow Jr.
Jeffrey Scott Yeomans

Alexis Blake Anderson
Nequoiah C. Anderson
Michael Clark Ayers
Thomas James Bitner, Cum Laude
Joseph Wade Borden†
Katharine Marie Chadwick
Aisha Noelle Collins
Darien Crank
Jarrod Daniel Cupp
Mia Karina Damico
Cassidy Rose Ebers
Zackery Tres Elliott
Lindsay Nicole Firster
Samuel Taylor Foster
Mason Andrew Fox
Melinda Jayne Franklin
Keagan Thomas Graham
Amanda Marie Grempel
Paris Tanashia Hardnett
Kristin Marie Hensley
Joshua Ronald Jaro
William Anthony Jennings
Martin Dan Jorgensen, Summa Cum Laude*
Stacie Marie Justis, Cum Laude
Katheryn Michelle Kolodi
Cyrus Jackson Lampley
Anthony Bernard Latimore Jr.
Melissa Raye Mauceri
Jennifer Dawn Mayo
Tyler James Miller
Corrinne E. Moore
Amy Leigh Morford, Cum Laude
Jonathan Ryan Norton
Georgia Paturalski
Leah Katelyn Powell
Jordan Tyler Rhinehart
Jeffrey Daniel Roberts, Magna Cum Laude
Jamie L. Rossman, Magna Cum Laude*
Jack Emile Scariano III
Tynan L. Shadle
Scott Charles Simmons Jr.
Madison Lashea Stephenson
Chelsea Elyse White

Lindsey Nicole Daniels, Magna Cum Laude
Rachael Jeanette Frantz
Kristi Leigh Seymour
Lauren Victoria Wallace, Cum Laude

Melissa Ann Alsip, Cum Laude
Abby Christina Anders
Kathryn Elizabeth Branam
Stephanie Michelle Brennan, Cum Laude
Yancey Britte Lynch
Steven Donald Mull
Ryan Clifford Ogle, Magna Cum Laude
Anthony Neal Palmer
Courtney Campbell Parton
Courtney LeAnn Payne
Natalie Ruth Saunders
Jeffery Dewayne Smith II
Emily Rebekah Teague
Madison Nicole Weems
Margaret Lynn Woods

Caroline Elizabeth Barton
Amanda Day Brooks, Cum Laude
Linda Gail Burton, Summa Cum Laude
Matthew Christopher Casey
Sarah Marie Cedillo, Cum Laude
Leslie Alicia Clemmons
Jennifer Ann Conner
Christina Renee Davis
Jamie Elizabeth DePriest
Melissa Gail Dunlap
Karen Jane Hatfield
Kimberly Joann Hayes
Brian Martin Hensley
Tammy Bray Johnson, Cum Laude
Jessica Briann Jones
Melissa S. Kelley, Cum Laude
Melanie Renee Kimbrough, Cum Laude
Pamela Christine Lamb
Leah Faye Lawrence
Jessica Machluf
Trena R. Russell
Tiquasia Deloris Simmons
Kyra Joelle Smallwood
Tracy Nicole Wells Vandiver
Jacquelyn Clintina Agee Waddell, Summa Cum Laude
Kavaldeep White

Mary Lyda Anderton
Logan Samuel Callahan
Sabrina Darlene Clark
Casey L. Cline, Magna Cum Laude
Tiffany Dawn Coffey
Hannah Sidney-Nicole Collins
Sara Len Douglas
Jordan Tyler Elkins
Robert Patrick Espinoza, Cum Laude
Hayley Elizabeth Fields
Gary Allen Fryman, Cum Laude
Angela Montgomery Gibby
Rachel Ilene Hazen Hale
Christopher Joel Hartwell
Angela Sue Hill
Amy Darlene Hinkle, Cum Laude
Eric Lynn Hinkle, Cum Laude
Tim Holseberg
Jason Hykle
Eric Barton Johnson, Magna Cum Laude
Matthew Jerry Johnson
Kay Jones
Renee Eileen Khan, Magna Cum Laude
Nathaniel Devin Lawrence
Dale Allen Linkous
William Keith McCord III
Dana Ruth Mihovch
Adam Ray Nelson
Ashley Ann Paulson
Patricia Ann Polfus, Magna Cum Laude
Tommy Lee Price II, Cum Laude
Nancy Denise Proske, Cum Laude
Justin Mark Reaves, Cum Laude
Joshua Michael Reeves
Mark Timothy Roberts, Cum Laude
Heather Juette Rollins, Cum Laude
Regina Sue Rose
Monica L. Smith
Dawn Marie Spangler
Nancy LeAnn Sutton
Jake Evan Turnmire
Michael Ryan Winstead

Brianna Hope Allen
Joseph Rhyne Brent
Stephen Wayne Buchanan, Magna Cum Laude
Lauren Elizabeth Bullerdick
David Anson Cagle
Jennifer Joy Cagle
Ashley Christine Carver
Susan Kaye Cutshall
Kristen Marie Johnson Dalton, Cum Laude
Brian Joseph Decker
Christopher Walter George
Eric Lee Henderson, Cum Laude
Zachary Hunter Holcombe
Renee Johnson
Kerri Ann Keaton
William Thomas Kidwell, Cum Laude
Bobby James Lambert
Tabitha Nicole Linkous
Tokena Decia Love
Jennifer Anne Mann, Magna Cum Laude
Shannon Ellison Marion
Michael Eugene Meade
Jared Houston Moore

Jessica Lynne Moore
John Timothy Nelson, Cum Laude
Marita Nicole Robinson
Maria Antonia Salami Tobuasiche
Clinton David Serman
Justin Grant Sewell, Cum Laude
Deanna Dolores Sheffey, Cum Laude
Megan Nicole Slack
Deborah Smith
Jordon Tyler Smith
Megan Elizabeth Smith
Sierra Grace Stair
Malinda Beth Thrasher, Cum Laude
Russell James Vandermeeden



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Discover the latest about your fellow alumni

Discover the latest about your fellow alumni

Posted on 25 November 2014 by








Dennis A. Wolford ’68 of Lafayette, TN, received the A.C.H.E. Regents Senior Level Health Care Executive Award at the Tennessee Hospital Association’s annual meeting on Nov. 7 in Nashville. He was recognized for his 44 years of service and leadership in the healthcare field and his community. Dennis has been CEO of Macon County General Hospital for 30 years. He has been board certified in healthcare administration since 1988. Dennis has served on the Tennessee Hospital Association’s board of directors and several other committees for the association. He currently serves as chairman of the board for the Upper Middle Tennessee Rural Health Network, chairman of the Macon County Health Council, chairman of the board for the Macon county Senior Citizen’s Center and chairman of the Makin’ Macon Fit Family Fitness Festival Wellness Committee. Dennis is also a member of the Lafayette Rotary Club.



Wayne Eichele ’73 of Ventura, CA, and his wife Pam have retired and are looking forward to the next chapter of their lives. They have just returned from a trip across the Canadian Rockies via the Rocky Mountain Rail Road. They plan to cruise to Alaska next spring and also tour Italy in the future. Wayne volunteers several hours a week at an elementary school and finds its rewarding in many different ways. The students and staff are awesome, he writes, and are appreciative of volunteers who can help students improve their academics and social/civic skills. Wayne would love to hear from fellow alumni. He can be reached at



Dory Wetzel Creech ’82 of Kingsport, TN, is a finalist for the 2014-15 Supervisor of the Year honor representing the First Region of Northeast Tennessee. In her position as assistant superintendent of instruction for the Kingsport City Schools, she oversees 14 people and has been with the system for 26 years.





Lesley Murray ’04 was married to Ryan Hawk on October 25, 2014, at 9 Oaks Farm in Monroe, GA. Bridesmaids included Rebecca Muncy ’05 and Julie Maples ’05. Following a wedding trip to Antigua in the West Indies, the couple is residing in Monroe.


Jade Bussell ’14 and Jonathan Essary were married November 8, 2014, at Christ United Methodist Church in Greeneville, TN. Bridesmaids included Ashley Fritz ’14, Kristen Lane ’14 and Latisha Stover ’14 and current Tusculum student Bailey Lawson. Following a wedding trip to Gatlinburg, the couple is living in Greeneville. Jade is a case manager for Frontier Health.





Lauren Abramson Baes ’02 of Franklin, TN, and her husband, Kevin, celebrated the birth of their son, Jack Adair Baes, on October 26, 2014. He weighed six pounds and 10 ounces and was 19.5 inches long.  Proud grandparents are Roger and Sanda Montgomery Abramson ’64 ’65.






Ellen Fletcher Kay ’37 of Tequesta, FL, passed away September 17, 2013. She was a retired receptionist of the Bath and Tennis Club.



Patrick H. Miller ’43 of Kingsport, TN, passed away on Oct. 18, 2014. As a student at Tusculum, he lettered in several sports and was captain of the football team. He was inducted into the College’s Sports Hall of Fame in 1986. After the bombing of Pearl Harbor, Mr. Miller left Tusculum to enlist in the U.S. Marines. He was stationed in Hawaii and became a C-42 pilot in the Pacific Theatre. His Marine transport squadron led similar units in total ton miles flown, passenger miles and flying hours. He rose to the rank of first lieutenant and logged more than 1,400 flight hours. After the war, Mr. Miller and his life-long friend, B.O. Ripley ’42, tried their hands at both the grocery and ice cream business before Mr. Miller returned to college on the G.I. Bill, completing his degree at the University of Florida. He then returned to Kingsport and began his career at Holston Defense, later transferring to Tennessee Electric Company, Inc., where he retired as senior financial associate in the comptrollers department. Mr. Miller was active in volunteer work at First Broad Street United Methodist Church. He gave his time generously to Civitan, Meals on Wheels and Junior Achievement. Mr. Miller amassed a wonderful wild flower garden over the years and delighted in sharing it with others. He also was a natural storyteller and loved to recite poetry.



Edgar A. Bergholtz ’50 of Cottageville, SC, passed away on September 28, 2014. Mr. Bergholtz was a veteran, having joined the Navy in 1942 following the bombing of Pearl Harbor and was a boatswain’s mate first class when he was discharged. He was a retired FBI special agent. While at the Bureau, he received several meritorious recognitions from Director J. Edgar Hoover and worked mainly in the area of organized crime. Mr. Bergholtz was a member of the Society of Former Special Agents of the FBI as well as the Irish Society.


Lt. Col. Jack Hoover Jenkins, USAF (Ret.) ’50 of Centennial, CO, passed away June 18, 2014. Lt. Col. Jenkins was an accountant and received his MBA in accounting from Michigan State University. During his service in the Air Force, he was stationed all over the United States.


Phyllis “Mimi” Pierce McAmis ’50 of Greeneville, TN, passed away Nov. 17, 2014. Mrs. McAmis had worked as a bookkeeper for Dr. Calvin Reviere, then as an aide at Tusculum View Elementary School and retired as a bookkeeper for Central Drug Store. She was a member of Greeneville Cumberland Presbyterian Church, where she had made the communion bread for more than 40 years. She had also started the tradition of the Halloween Popcorn House. Mrs. McAmis served on the board of directors of the Greeneville-Greene County YMCA for several members, was a member of The Bridge Club and volunteered as a cook at Camp John Speer for several years. Her survivors include Tusculum alumni daughter Terri Morrell ’04, granddaughter Sarah Morrell Mathes ’03, sister Wanda Pierce Hall ’54, brother Jimmy Pierce ’60, sister-in-law Betty McAmis King ’50 and her husband, Dick ’51 and sister-in-law Mary McAmis Smith ’53.

Harley Lee Reel ’53 of Ho-Ho-Kus, NJ, passed away on October 8, 2014. Mr. Reel had enjoyed a productive 40-year career in business. He enjoyed outdoor activities and spending time with family and friends. He was active in his local community government and organizations.


Joseph S. Schwartz ’59 of Cherry Hill, NJ, passed away November 19, 2014. Mr. Schwartz was a Life Trustee of Tusculum College and had served as an active member of the Board of Trustees from 1995 to 2011. He was the retired president and owner of Guaranteed Brake Parts, Inc., his family’s auto parts rebuilding company, as well as a member of the Auto Parts Rebuilders Association Board and chairman of the Brake and Clutch Institute. He and his wife Kathy (Cheek) ’58 served their Alma Mater as decade chairpersons for the alumni phase of the Tusculum College 2000 Campaign and in key leadership roles in the Bicentennial Campaign. Memorial contributions may be made to the Cheek-Schwartz Endowment Fund at Tusculum.



Eva J. Hill White ’61 of Greeneville, TN, passed away October 31, 2014. Mrs. White was a school teacher, working in the Greeneville City School System for 30 years before she retired in 1984. She was a graduate of Morristown College in 1941, earning a degree in secretarial science and she then attended A&I (Tennessee) State University in 1943, earning a degree in special education. She then earned a degree in education from Tusculum as one of the first African-Americans to attend and graduate from the College in the modern era. Mrs. White had said she found it a blessing to be able to attend a local college while raising her children and helping her husband take care of her family. Mrs. White earned a master’s degree in elementary education in 1972 from East Tennessee State University. She was a member of Friendship Baptist Church and was very active in organizations in the church as long as she was able. As her health declined, she continued to attend church and bring joy to many of her fellow church members until her last time attending services on September 28. Her survivors include daughter ant Tusculum alumna Sharon White Jefferson ’98.


Faline Mather Gray ’65 of Lansdale, PA, passed away unexpectedly on September 10, 2014. She and her beloved husband William K. Gray, Sr. ’65 had celebrated their 49th wedding anniversary on August 28. Mrs. Gray was director of the Building Blocks Christian Nursery School for 27 years. She had also served as a special education teacher in the North Penn School District. Mrs. Gray was a member of the Lansdale Presbyterian Church where she served as an ESL volunteer teacher and Bible Study leader. She was a foster parent with Bethany Christian Services for 17 years. She was involved with Mothers of Pre-Schoolers as a mentor mother, a member of Heritage Questers, served as a Pennsylvania home school evaluator for 29 years and did sewing for Creative Stitches. She enjoyed baking and cooking and used her talents for the Food from the Heart program.


Mary Katherine  “Kaye” Marshall ’87 of Henderson, Ky., formerly of Greeneville, Tenn., passed away on November 12, 2013, at her home under the care of hospice. Ms. Marshall was a registered nurse and had worked 17 years for the State of Tennessee Department of Human Services. She was a member of Henderson’s First Baptist Church. Ms. Marshall earned a degree in English literature from Tusculum and was an avid reader. She also enjoyed her flower garden and cooking for her family.


Raymond Dennis Powers ’97 of Kingston, TN, passed away on July 3, 2014.  Mr. Powers was a maintenance supervisor for the Tennessee Valley Authority.



Douglas Eric Baker ’00 of Liberty Hill, TN, passed away November 11, 2014. Mr. Baker had been a manager of Starbucks in Knoxville, TN, and a member of the staff of Holston Home for Children in Greeneville, TN.


Tamara Allison ’04 of Maryville, TN, passed away September 11, 2007. She had worked at TDS Telecom.


William Mims ’04 of Dandridge, TN, passed away February 3, 2009, after complications with surgery. Mr. Mims worked at ITT in Knoxville, TN, and had been selected as “Teacher of the Year” in 2008. He was a member of First United Methodist Church of Newport. He enjoyed tennis and biking.



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Tree Lighting and Christmas Band Concert set Tuesday, Dec. 2

Tree Lighting and Christmas Band Concert set Tuesday, Dec. 2

Posted on 14 November 2014 by

People gathered and sang carols following the tree lighting during last year's ceremony.

Get into the holiday spirit Tuesday, Dec. 2, at Tusculum College with a Christmas tree lighting and the annual holiday concert by the College’s Band Program.

The local community is invited to the celebration and concert, which are both free and open to the public.

Festivities will begin at 6 p.m. with the lighting of the tree and caroling in front of the Annie Hogan Byrd Fine Arts Building on campus.  Wassail and cookies will be served in the lobby of the Byrd building following the lighting.

The Christmas Band Concert will follow at 7 p.m., featuring the Concert Band, Jazz Band and Handbell Choir.

The Concert Band and Jazz Band’s repertoire will include Christmas favorites. The Concert Band will be performing “It’s the Most Wonderful Time of the Year,” “Christmas Eve/Sarajevo,” “Merry Christmas Darling,” “Yes Virginia, There Is A Santa Claus” and “Wonderful Christmastime.” The Jazz Band will be performing “All I Want for Christmas Is You,” “Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas” and “Three Guys.”

The Handbell Choir will be performing three traditional carols, “Tomorrow Shall Be My Dancing Day,” “The Ukrainian Carol of the Bells” and “Lo, How a Rose E’er Blooming.”

The band program began in 2010 with the formation of a pep band and has grown to include a Marching Band, Concert Band, Jazz Band, Handbell Choir and various small ensembles.


Come enjoy some refreshments between the tree lighting festivities and Band concert.

The College's Concert Band performs during last year's concert.




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Doak House Museum prepares to celebrate holidays with two programs

Doak House Museum prepares to celebrate holidays with two programs

Posted on 12 November 2014 by

The Doak House Museum is preparing to celebrate the holidays with a Christmas Open House on Dec. 6 and with its popular children’s program, “Storytelling and Gingerbread” through Dec. 18.

An open house will be held at the museum on the Tusculum College campus from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Saturday, Dec. 6. Free tours of the museum will be provided along with refreshments, crafts and games for the children, storytelling and specials in the museum’s gift shop with proceeds going toward the museum’s programs. A storyteller will perform at 11 a.m. and 1 p.m. and tours will offered throughout the event.

The museum, which is the 1830s home of Tusculum College co-founder the Rev. Samuel Witherspoon Doak, will be decorated in a charming 19th century style, as a home would be during that time period.

“Storytelling and Gingerbread,” the Doak House Museum’s most popular children’s program, will be continuing through Dec. 18. Molly Mouse is the guide for the children as they experience holiday customs that the Doak family enjoyed in the 19th century. They learn about holiday foods from the period, gift giving and decorating customs as people lived them 200 years ago.

The program is open to public and private school groups as well as home schooled children. The museum is also able to offer Title I schools a discounted admission.

On Friday, Dec. 12, the program will be offered for home school children. One adult per family will be admitted free of charge. The program will begin at 1:30 p.m.

For more information about the Open House, contact Leah Walker at the museum at 423-636-8554 or

To make a reservation for the “Storytelling and Gingerbread” program, please contact Dollie Boyd at 423-636-8554 or

The Doak House Museum and the President Andrew Johnson Museum and Library are operated by the Department of Museum Program and Studies of Tusculum College. In addition to the museums, the department is responsible for the College Archives and offers one of the few undergraduate Museum Studies degree programs in the country. The two museums are also part of the National Historic District on the Tusculum College campus. Follow the museums on Facebook and Twitter to learn the latest news and upcoming events or visit its Web site at to learn more about the variety of programs offered at the museums.


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More than 700 served through RAM free health care clinic hosted by Tusculum

More than 700 served through RAM free health care clinic hosted by Tusculum

Posted on 11 November 2014 by

Through the Remote Area Medical health care clinic hosted by Tusculum College on the Greeneville campus this weekend, 761 people received professional medical care completely free of charge.

Remote Area Medical is a Knoxville-based organization providing free medical care for the uninsured and underinsured.

“What an experience to be part of this project and see a critical need in our region being met by hundreds of volunteers who worked tirelessly throughout the weekend,” said Dr. Nancy Moody, president of the college.

During the weekend clinic, volunteers provided medical services, dental work and optometry services and glasses on-site free of charge. Health care services provided included comprehensive screening for diabetes and hypertension, procedures such as retinal screening using telemedicine technology, chest x-rays, pulmonary function studies, chiropractic services and some gynecological procedures.

During the Tusculum clinic, $413,494 in medical services were provided free to anyone in need, including $338,102 in dental care, $71,737 in vision care and $3,655 in medical services. Additionally, 319 pairs of prescription eyeglasses were given out. More than 6,700 volunteer hours were dedicated to the event, from more than 500 volunteers, two-thirds of which were professionals in medical-related fields. Volunteers included staff, faculty, alumni and students from Tusculum College, medical students from other colleges and universities and hundreds of volunteers from the community.

Tusculum nursing students were among the volunteers taking vital signs and making notes about patient's medical histories in the "triage" area each visited prior to getting in line for either vision or dental services.

“It was a very humbling experience to see the critical nature of what the RAM organization has adopted as its mission,” said Mark Stokes, Tusculum chaplain and planning committee chairman. “This community responded with such incredible generosity, it is impossible to thank everyone who supported the event.”

Businesses, churches and community organizations responded by donating time and resources at a tremendous level. Food for volunteers, transportation resources and equipment were just a few of the needs met by the local community, according to Stokes.

Students came from Tusculum College, University of Buffalo Dental School, Virginia Southern University, Middle Tennessee State University, East Tennessee State University, the Southern College of Optometry, the University of Tennessee, Lincoln Memorial University and the University of Alabama at Birmingham. More than 40 Tusculum College nursing students worked throughout the weekend, alongside their faculty and dean, Dr. Lois Ewen.

Dental students from the University of Buffalo received valuable experience during the clinic performing tooth extractions and fillings.

“Many of these students talked about how the experience had changed their lives, as well as giving them a learning experience that was invaluable,” said Dr. Ewen.

Dr Moody added, “What a sense of real impact was felt by everyone involved in this project. We were aided by many community organizations, including the East Tennessee Foundation, which provided a grant of $12,000 through the Dr. J. G. Hawkins Memorial Fund. I am personally awed by the students, faculty, staff, alumni,  friends and local businesses who dedicated their time, talent and resources to make this happen for those in need.”

Planning Committee members included Stokes, Dr. Moody, Dr. Ewen, Steve Gehret, vice president and chief executive officer; Audrey Brackens, administrative assistant for the School of Nursing, Health Sciences and Psychology; Jennifer Hollowell, Arts Outreach coordinator; Ronda Gentry, director of the Center for Civic Advancement, Jon Gresham, campus safety director; David Martin, director of facilities; Suzanne Richey, director of college communications; Mike Hollowell, executive director of the Greene County YMCA, and Vickie Andrew, vice president for chamber operations at the Greene County Partnership.

Patients seeking vision care were given a thorough exam and those needing new prescription glasses were able to get them at the clinic as well.


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Dr. Ron May named vice president of academic affairs at Tusculum College

Dr. Ron May named vice president of academic affairs at Tusculum College

Posted on 06 November 2014 by

Dr. Ron May, who has been serving as interim vice president of academic affairs at Tusculum College since Aug. 11, has accepted the appointment of vice president of academic affairs.  Dr. May and his wife, Joan, have accepted an invitation to serve Tusculum College at least through June 30, 2016.

Dr. May, a 1968 graduate of the college, has had a distinguished career in higher education, retiring in June 2014 as president of Ancilla College in Donaldson, Ind. In his career he has taught public school, as well as served as a college professor, department head, dean, vice president and twice as a college president, at Ancilla and at Louisburg College in Louisburg, N.C.

Dr. Ron May


“Tusculum College is fortunate to have the opportunity to continue to benefit from Dr. May’s leadership in academic affairs,” said Dr. Nancy B. Moody, president of Tusculum College. “His professional background provides a vast experience in higher education administration to keep Tusculum first.”

While his primary responsibilities will be leading the academic programs of the college, Dr. May will also hold faculty rank as professor of education.

In his career, Dr. May has been recognized by numerous organizations, including by the Leadership Marshall County program with their Leader of the Year Award in 2011. He served Tusculum College as dean of faculty from 1985 to 1988. He also served for a time as the president of the Tusculum College Alumni Association.


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‘The Addams Family’ coming to the stage Nov. 14-16, 20-23

‘The Addams Family’ coming to the stage Nov. 14-16, 20-23

Posted on 03 November 2014 by

Erin Hensley-Schultz (Morticia) and Chris Greene (Gomez) rehearse a scene from the musical, based on the beloved Charles Addams' cartoon characters.

They’re spooky, a bit kooky and they’re coming to the stage soon in Northeast Tennessee.

Theatre-at-Tusculum is presenting “The Addams Family,” the first time the Broadway-award winning musical has been staged in East Tennessee. The musical, based on the beloved Charles Addams’ cartoons, will be presented  at 7 p.m. on Nov. 14-15, 20-22 and 2 p.m. on Nov. 16 and 23 in the auditorium of the Annie Hogan Byrd Fine Arts Building on the Tusculum College campus.

Well known and respected actors from the Northeast Tennessee fill the cast for the musical that finds the weird and wonderful Addams family with an affinity for all things macabre with a developing crisis. Wednesday Addams has fallen in love with nerdy Lucas Beineke, who is from a “normal” family. Meanwhile, well meaning Uncle Fester has been working behind the scenes with the Addams family ancestors, who set about helping the family with its new challenging situation, and the fun ensues for the audience.

Under the direction of Marilyn duBrisk, the talented cast includes Erin Hensley-Schultz, a well-known Johnson City thespian, who is bringing Morticia to life, opposite Chris Greene who is portraying the suave Gomez.  Wednesday Addams is brought to life by Hannah Faith Rader, who has performed in Jonesborough and Johnson City productions, and her love interest, Lucas Beineke, is talented Parker Bunch, who many will remember from his role as Bob Cratchit in Theatre-at-Tusculum’s 2013 production of “A Christmas Carol.”

Undertaking Fester and also acting as assistant director is Brian Ricker, who has become a local favorite through his many roles in the Theatre-at-Tusculum program. A relative newcomer to the local stage, but who is also quickly becoming a favorite, is Audrey Shoemaker, who is being transformed for the show into 102-year-old Granny Adams. Young newcomer Tate Brumit plays obnoxious and cheeky little brother while Mike Willis, who delighted audiences as the Ghost of Christmas Future in “A Christmas Carol,” will bring the memorable Lurch to life. Lucas’ parents, Mal and Alice Beineke will be portrayed by Josh Davis, who has starred in roles in Morristown productions, and Jodi Carter, another veteran of Theatre-at-Tusculum productions.


Hensley-Schultz practices a dance with the Addams Family Ancestors during rehearsal. From left are Angie Willis, Austin Bird, Josh Beddingfield, Hensley-Schultz, Charlene Kight, Laura Berry, Zach Gass (partially hidden) and Toni Bates.

Portraying Gomez has meant lots of practice in using a Spanish accent for Greene. “It has been challenging, but a lot of fun.” Audiences will find lots to love about the show,

Greene says, and he has especially enjoyed the music. “The music in this show is great. It is different from the other musicals – the songs are a lot more in the rock and jazz vein.” Greene is a local favorite, and some of his memorable leads include The Cat in the Hat in “Seussical,” the Scarecrow in “Wizard of Oz” and Sir Toby in “Twelfth Night.”

Hensley-Schultz is returning to the Theatre-at-Tusculum stage as Morticia, a role she has wanted to play since a child. She recalls seeing the Addams Family movies and finding the Morticia to be the “coolest character” because of her dark beauty and graceful movements. Hensley-Schultz was in duBrisk’s productions while in high school and then moved away from the region and recently moved back to the region.  Among her memorable roles are Patsy Cline in “Always Patsy Cline,” Winifred in “Once Upon a Mattress” and Columbia in “Rocky Horror Picture Show.”

Bringing the “very loaded” character of Wednesday to life has been a welcome challenge to Rader. Falling in love has pulled Wednesday in a new direction from the dark world that is her norm. “The Addams Family” is a show that has something for everyone, Rader says. “It has a great message in terms of love,” she said. “Although the Addams family members are weird, they are all about family, they look out for each other.” Rader’s recent work includes Jonesborough Repertory Theatre’s “Hairspray,” and Blue Moon Dinner Theatre’s production of “Rocky Horror Picture Show.” She also appeared in several productions while in college at Carson-Newman University.

Wednesday’s new love, Lucas Beineke, is portrayed by Bunch, who finds himself playing a shy teenager in love, much like the character of Peter in Theatre-at-Tusculum’s production of “Anne Frank,” but unlike his own outgoing personality.  Audiences will find the musical to be funny, with lots of great music and costumes, he says. Bunch has been featured in such plays as “Christmas Carol,” but says he especially enjoyed being part of last spring’s production of “The Complete Works of William Shakespeare.”

The role of Uncle Fester is much like The Cat in the Hat in “Seussical” in moving the action along, said Ricker of the role. Uncle Fester also has some interaction with the audience. “I love that,” he said. “It is sort of like improvisation – it makes you be on your toes and focused.” Ricker is also taking on the additional role of assistant director, which has been a fun challenge. “I can’t say enough about the amazing cast, they are absolutely brilliant,” he said, noting that it will be difficuult for him during the performances to stay focused on his character as he will also be thinking about things that need to be happening backstage and onstage.

Shoemaker says it has fun but challenging to play a 102-year-old. “The lines are awesome,” she said of the part, but the role is also physical as Granny’s body language is as important as the lines. Shoemaker’s past Theatre-at-Tusculum roles in such shows as “Carnival,” “You’re a Good Man, Charlie Brown” and “Seussical,” have all been strong character roles, which has been an enjoyable change. Prior to coming to Theatre-at-Tusculum, she was primarily cast in leading roles, but she said she is more comfortable in playing the character roles such as Granny.

The youngest member of the cast is Brumit, whose portrayal of Pugsley is his first leading role. While the play has been fun, he says, it has also been a lot of work. “Most of my parts are in the first act. It is hard because I go on and off stage several times.” Brumit’s experience in the theater began with a role in “Seussical.” “I really liked it a lot and enjoyed being in it with my friends.”

A veteran of both Morristown and Greeneville theater, Davis has been tasked with playing the much older character of Mal Beineke, Lucas’ father. Returning to work with duBrisk and a talented cast has been the best part of his experience with the Addams Family, Davis says, and invites audiences to come enjoy the fun musical. “The Addams Family are American icons and it is fun to see them brought to life on the stage,” he notes. “There are some things about the show you will not be expecting but there are different things you should expect. It is very funny, and there are lots of surprises.” Audiences have enjoyed Davis in such roles as Lord Farquaad in “Shrek the Musical” and as the lead role in the production of “Sweeney Todd” at Walters State Community College in Morristown.

Portraying Mal’s wife Alice is Carter, who agrees with her stage husband that the best part of the production has been the camaraderie among the cast. A music teacher in the Greene County School System, Carter’s first experiences under the tutelage of duBrisk was as a participant in the GLAWPIGT (Great Literature Alive, Well and Playing in Greeneville, Tennessee) program for students in grades 3-12). She has had lead roles in “Seussical,” “The Wizard of Oz” and “Oliver.”

The production staff includes Angie Clendenon, music director; Chris Beste, accompanist; David Price, percussion, and Kim Berry as the show’s choreographer. Frank Mengel is technical director and set designer; Barbara Holt, costume director; Suzanne Greene and Jim Holt, stage management; Zach Holdich, lighting design; Margo Olmsted and Sandy Neinaber, props management; Trenda Berney, make-up director; and Jennifer Hollowell, house manager in charge of the box office.

Parents are cautioned that while “The Addams Family” is family friendly, it is rated as a “PG” show due to a few instances of rough language.

With  music and lyrics by Andrew Lippa and story by Marshall Brickman and Rick Elice,  the original show opened in April 2010 with Nathan Lane as Gomez and Bebe Neuwirth as Morticia.  The show won a Audience Award for Favorite New Broadway Musical and played 722 performances before closing on December 31, 2011.  It then went on tour both in the U.S. and Internationally.

Admission is $12 for adults, $10 for seniors 60 and over, and $5 for children 12 and under.  To reserve tickets, please call 423-798-1620 or email


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More than 200 alumni enjoy Homecoming 2014 activities

More than 200 alumni enjoy Homecoming 2014 activities

Posted on 23 October 2014 by

Friendships were renewed and new memories made on the Tusculum College campus this past weekend as more than 200 alumni returned for Homecoming 2014 activities.

Alumni enjoyed two days packed with activities on campus and in the surrounding community October 17 and 18.

Friday’s highlights included a trip to Bright’s Zoo, which is home to exotic and endangered animals from across the globe; a luncheon with students; campus tours led by members of the President’s Society; an herb workshop at the Doak House Museum; an open house at the Office of Career Services, and reunion year get-togethers.

Alumni and friends of the College enjoyed the bright, sunny fall afternoon on the links during the annual Homecoming Golf Tournament, held this year at Link Hills Country Club. Winning the net division was the team of Skip Bishop ’63, Derek Cantrell, Wade Nystrom ’64 and Matt Poff ’12. The team winning the gross division included Bobby Bowers ’57, Eldon Duncan, Jack Kilday ’57 and Bill Smith ’66.

Winning the net division of the golf tournament were Skip Bishop '63, Derek Cantrell, Wade Nystrom '64 and Matt Poff '12 (not pictured).


Winning the gross division of the golf tournament was Jack Kilday '57, Bobby Bowers '57, Bill Smith '66 and Eldon Duncan.

Saturday’s activities began with the annual Memorial and Chapel Service, which recognizes those alumni who have passed away since the previous year’s Homecoming. The service included a special performance of “Hymn of Promise” by the Tusculum Alumni Choir, which included daughters of Joan Faulkner Weesner ’51, who passed away earlier this year.

Chalmers Conference Center was filled for the Alumni Breakfast and annual Alumni Association meeting. The meeting included greetings to the alumni from various groups and an update on the College and the new Tusculum First Campaign from Tusculum President Nancy B. Moody.

A highlight of the meeting was the presentation of awards and the Sports Hall of Fame induction. Four awards were presented from the Alumni Association, and a coach and two former Pioneer student-athletes were inducted into the Sports Hall of Fame.

Dr. Nancy B. Moody

The first award presented was the National Alumni Recognition Award, which is presented to individuals who have excelled during their service to Tusculum by demonstrating a commitment to the students of the College and her programs. Lynn Battle, president of the Alumni Association, presented the award. Noting that he did have about three pages of biographical information to read about the recipient, he noted that would not be necessary as her contributions to the College are well known as he called Dr. Nancy B. Moody, president of the College, to the front to receive the award.

Amy Brooks

The National Living Faculty Award was presented to Amy Brooks, director of the athletic training program, assistant professor of athletic training and assistant athletic trainer. At Tusculum, she also serves as the certified athletic trainer for the sports of volleyball and women’s basketball. Angelo Botta ’75, who presented the award to his fellow faculty member, said Brooks goes above and beyond in her duties, often coming in early and then staying late to help students.

The Sports Hall of Fame inductions were then made. Added to the Sports Hall of Fame this year were Pioneer golf coach Bob Dibble; 2003 All-American football linebacker Craig Pritchett; and 2007 South Atlantic Conference women’s golfer of the year Shannon Palenkas Stone.  (To learn more about the inductees, please visit this webpage.)


Inducted into the Sports Hall of Fame were Golf Coach Bob Dibble, women's golfer Shannon Palenkas Stone '07 and football linebacker Craig Pritchett '04.

Brett Purgason

Brett Purgason ’02 was presented the Frontier Award, which recognizes outstanding alumni who have graduated between five and 15 years ago from the College. Purgason, who earned his bachelor’s degree through the Graduate and Professional Studies Program, is a dedicated member of the Tusculum College Alumni Executive Board. He is employed by the RMS Building Division, where he serves as building division manager. Purgason is active in local politics, previously serving as the chairman of the Greene County Republican Party. He serves as a board member of the Greene County Partnership and is a graduate of the Greene County Leadership Program, where he received the Outstanding Character Award.

The Pioneer Award, the highest honor presented by the Alumni Association, was given to George Ryan ’75. In presenting the award, Larry Pinkiewicz ’75 noted that Ryan, a CPA who owns his own firm, has been a strong ambassador for his Alma Mater, encouraging prospective students to come to Tusculum. He has volunteered his time to college fairs in his region in New Jersey to represent Tusculum. Ryan was unable to attend Homecoming because of a death in his family, but his award was accepted by his daughter, Ciara, a freshman at Tusculum who said she decided to come to Tusculum because of her father’s love for the school.

Ciara Ryan, a freshman at Tusculum, accepts the Pioneer Award for her father, George Ryan '75, from his classmate Larry Pinkiewicz '75.

Following the meeting, alumni were invited to have class photos made in front of the Niswonger Commons while awaiting the beginning of the parade, which passed in front of that building. Members of the Golden Pioneer Class of 1964 were grand marshals for the parade.

The parade ended at the area of the tailgate held prior to the football game against long-time rival Carson-Newman. Although the Pioneers were not victorious, the alumni were treated to an exciting game with a series of lead changes. During half-time, the Homecoming King and Queen were crowned. Chosen through a vote of the student body, crowned were seniors Forrest Trent of Morristown and Sarah Jackson of Duluth, Ga. Both students are psychology majors and have been active leaders on campus. Trent is serving this year as a student intern in the Office of Student Affairs. Jackson is a member of the President’s Society student ambassador group.

Homecoming festivities concluded Saturday evening with an alumni dinner and dancing at the General Morgan Inn.

To view more photos from Homecoming,  please visit the Tusculum College Facebook page.



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