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Tusculum College students to provide a day of service in the community as part of campus tradition

Posted on 26 August 2016 by

Tusculum College students will demonstrate the college’s commitment to both learning and serving on Wednesday, Sept. 14, as they spend a day helping others and improving the community.

All freshmen and first-year transfer students will participate in Nettie Fowler McCormick Service Day as part of the Tusculum Experience course. Many other students, faculty, staff and alumni have also made plans to volunteer. Nettie Fowler McCormick Service Day is one of the longest-held traditions on the Tusculum campus and involves students spending time in service to others. Some of the projects that the students will undertake include working with local non-profit organizations and schools.

“Community engagement is a key element of the Tusculum College experience,” said Ronda Gentry, director of the Center for Civic Advancement and coordinator of the event. “Nettie Day serves as an introduction to our new students and a reminder to our entire community of the importance and value of community involvement.”

This year, Nettie Day participants will fan out into the region helping numerous organizations, including Rural Resources, the Greeneville/Greene County Humane Society, local parks and several schools. Service activities will be conducted at all the Tusculum sites and campus in Greeneville, Knoxville and Morristown.

Nettie Fowler McCormick Service Day, which is conducted under the auspices of the Center for Civic Advancement, 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 some of the most significant donors in the college’s history.

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.

This year’s Nettie Day is made possible through a gift from the estate of Nancy and Leon Leslie. Leon “Moose” Leslie was a key member of the last football team at Tusculum College prior to it being reinstated in the 1990s. He graduated from Tusculum in 1951 with a major in economics. He married his Westwood, New Jersey high school sweetheart, the former Nancy Hill. Mr. Leslie was elected a trustee of his alma mater in 1990 and served with distinction on the Athletic Committee until his death in 1996. Mr. and Mrs. Leslie served in the Bicentennial Campaign as members of the East Coast Advance Gifts Committee. In recognition of their generous support of Tusculum College throughout the capital campaign, the Leslie Resident Apartment in Craig Hall was named in their honor.


Each year, Tusculum College students help in the community on "Nettie Day"


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Tusculum College begins recycling program

Posted on 25 August 2016 by

Students, faculty and staff at Tusculum College will have the opportunity to recycle mixed paper on campus beginning in September.

Led by the student organization, the Green Team, the new program developed through a partnership with the college’s facilities management department, the Center for Civic Advancement and the Town of Greeneville.

According to Courtney Washburn, program coordinator for the Center for Civic Advancement, the program will provide the campus with the opportunity to recycle mixed paper.

“We are launching a small and focused recycling program in an effort to create sustainable change,” said Washburn. “We expect to see the program grow and expand in availability and acceptable materias as it becomes ingrained within the Tusculum culture and community.”

According to Washburn, marked mixed paper recycling bins are being placed at three locations on campus: the Niswonger Commons, the Thomas J. Garland Library and McCormick Hall. These bins may be used by anyone on campus and will be clearly marked as mixed paper recycling containers. Students from the Green Team will service the bins once a week and take them to collection containers serviced by the Town of Greeneville.

Items that may be placed in the bins include  non-confidential documents and items such as newspaper, mixed office paper, notebook paper, magazines, phone books, envelopes (including window envelops) and sticky notes.  Paper may contain staples; however no paper clips, binder slips or spiral binding may be placed in the bins. Cardboard, cardstock and paperboard, such as cereal boxes, are not being collected at this time.

“We are beginning with mixed paper because on a college campus, it is the largest volume of recyclable material,” said Washburn. She added, however, that as the program grows, waste audits will be conducted to determine what materials would have the most impact when diverted from the college’s waste stream to recycling collection.

Funding to initiate the recycling program came from the Tusculum College Student Government Association.

For more information on the program or to arrange for a large volume mixed paper pick up, contact Washburn at


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Tusculum College receives 2016 Veteran Reconnect grant

Posted on 25 August 2016 by

Tusculum College is one of six colleges and universities to receive a 2016 Veteran Reconnect grant from the Tennessee Higher Education Commission. The six campuses will receive nearly $1 million in funds, with Tusculum College receiving $185,470 for its veterans programs.

The THEC grant is part of the State of Tennessee’s larger efforts to support and encourage adult learners, many of whom are veterans, studying at Tennessee institutions.

The most recent round of the Veteran Reconnect program, which was awarded through a competitive proposal process, aims to build on proven practices to support veterans on campuses and will provide funding for a 22-month grant period.

“This grant will allow us to move forward with plans for expanding our reputation for being a veteran-friendly institution,” said Dr. Nancy B. Moody, president of Tusculum College. “We want to provide a wide range of services to a growing number of veterans and their dependents that will insure college and career success on a much larger scale than currently possible. In recent years, the enrollment of military veterans at Tusculum College has significantly increased and we see that trend continuing.”

Tusculum College will use Veteran Reconnect funds to develop, create and hire the position of Director of Veterans Affairs. In addition, the college will enhance the services of its Veteran Education Program by providing veterans with streamlined enrollment, promotion of student veteran resources, financial advisement, implementation of faculty and staff training to increase awareness of veterans’ needs and workforce partnerships.

“Every student enrolled in college has a unique set of needs and that is especially true for veteran students,” said THEC Executive Director Mike Krause. “Veteran Reconnect is assisting veterans on Tennessee campuses to both connect with their campus and with their fellow servicemen.”

The programs funded through Veteran Reconnect will increase campus services for student veterans and provide veteran-specific resources, such as the expansion of campus veteran centers or professional development for faculty and staff on the specific needs of students with military experience.

Community partners supporting the grant include ABC Family Dentistry, DTR Tennessee Inc., the General Morgan Inn, Landair, Laughlin Memorial Hospital Inc., Parker Hannifin Corporation Hydraulics Group, the Town of Greeneville, and the United States Army Reserve Center.


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Tusculum College Community Chorus seeks members

Posted on 24 August 2016 by

Community members, faculty, staff and students are invited to join the Tusculum College Community Chorus for the 2016-2017 academic year.

The Community Chorus has availability in all voice parts, especially in bass and tenor.

An organizational meeting and first rehearsal will be held on Monday, Sept. 12, at 7 p.m. in the Behan Arena Theatre downstairs in Annie Hogan Byrd Auditorium at Tusculum College (enter on the parking lot side, lower level).

The TCCC performs two major concerts per year and this year will appear with the Johnson City Symphony Orchestra in December. An international chorus performance is scheduled for Ireland and Scotland in June 2017. More information will be provided about this optional travel experience at regular rehearsals, Monday evenings at 7 p.m.

Anyone interested in participating is encouraged to contact Kathryn May at or May also directs the choral program at Greeneville High School and at Salem Presbyterian Church.


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Tusculum College provides more than 172,000 hours of community service in 2015

Posted on 22 August 2016 by

Students, faculty and staff at Tusculum College provided more than 172,000 hours of community service to the Greene County area and East Tennessee region in 2015.

According to Dr. Ronda Gentry, director of the Tusculum College Center for Civic Advancement, 172,301.5 hours were recorded by members of the Tusculum College community during 2015. This included community service through service learning courses, the Bonner Leader program, student athletes, Nettie McCormick Fowler Service Day, Upward Bound and many other groups associated with Tusculum College.

“The vast majority of our service hours are contributed by our students,” said Dr. Gentry. “However, the idea of service and giving back to the community is prevalent among everyone associated with the college.”

Dr. Gentry added that the hours recorded for 2015 were contributed by 2,644 volunteers.

“We calculate the average value of an hour of service at $23.07 per hour, making our contribution in 2015 a total value to the community of $3,974,995.60.

Dr. Gentry also noted that 24 percent of the federal work study dollars that are apportioned to Tusculum College go toward community service activities. “That is huge,” she said. “The gold standard is 15 percent.”

The Center for Civic Advancement seeks to engage the heart, mind, and soul of Tusculum through cultivating awareness of self and of others. The Center aspires to do this through the establishment of meaningful relationships with our local, national, and global communities.

“Service-Learning is integral to the Tusculum College curriculum and reflects the college’s commitment to providing educational experiences that will prepare its graduates for the demands of active and responsible citizenship,” said Dr. Gentry.


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Tusculum College to encourage adult students to “Finish Strong” through full tuition essay competition

Posted on 22 August 2016 by

Tusculum College wants all students to “Finish Strong” and is offering for the second time a full tuition scholarship to one lucky contest winner.

“We are pleased to announce the launch of an exciting scholarship contest representing a great opportunity for the winner to complete their undergraduate degree through one of our Graduate and Professional Studies programs,” said LeAnn Hughes, vice president for enrollment management and marketing and director of the Graduate and Professional Studies program at Tusculum College. “The Tusculum College Finish Strong Scholarship Giveaway recognizes the hard work and sacrifices our adult students put forth when returning to school to finish their degree.”

“Getting people back to school to finish their degrees is life changing,” said Lindsey Seal, director of Graduate and Professional Studies enrollment. “Through this essay contest, we will learn the individual stories of our students and be able to share them with others who wish to follow in their footsteps. The bonus is that one lucky participant will receive a full tuition scholarship as a prize.”

The winner of last year’s Finish Strong contest was Aimee Teffeteller of Maryville. Teffeteller is currently enrolled in a bachelor’s degree program and plans to major in education. “Winning the Finish Strong scholarship has been such a blessing,” said Teffeteller. “It has enabled me to finish my degree without the financial burden that comes with continuing one’s education. I am so thankful to have been given this opportunity.”

The Finish Strong Scholarship Giveaway is provided by Tusculum College in partnership with Food City and WIVK-Radio. Both Food City and WIVK will promote the contest in the greater Knoxville area during the term of the event.

The Finish Strong Scholarship Giveaway will begin on Thursday, Sept. 1, and will end on Friday, Sept. 30. The contest is open to all legal U.S. residents age 18 or older with a valid Social Security number at the time of entry. The winner must submit the following: an application for admission and be accepted to an undergraduate degree program at Tusculum College, an essay and official transcripts of all college level work from regionally accredited schools demonstrating a minimum of a 2.0 grade point average and the equivalent of 54 semester hours or an associate’s degree. Currently enrolled Tusculum College students are ineligible to win.

The required essay should describe how obtaining an undergraduate degree from Tusculum College will transform the entrant’s life.

There is no charge or fee to submit the essay or enter the contest. The essay submitted must contain between 250 and 500 words to be considered a valid entry. In addition to the required essay submission, entrants are encouraged to promote actively their participation in the Scholarship Contest via social media, using #finishstrong. Social media participation is not part of the criteria for eligibility or for judging the best essays.

One grand prize will be awarded. The grand prize package consists of a tuition-paid scholarship to one of Tusculum College’s undergraduate degree-completion programs which can be redeemed at any of the Knoxville, Morristown or Greeneville locations and can be applied to pay all of the regular tuition charges for an undergraduate degree-completion program in business administration, management, interdisciplinary studies (education, K-5) and psychology, behavioral health concentration.

Enrollment into one of the four undergraduate degree programs is subject to availability at the respective class location. The winner is responsible for paying all other charges, fees and amounts payable by a student enrolled in the program and will not be eligible to receive any additional institutional-based scholarships.

The prize may be combined with other forms of financial aid available through Tusculum College.

To enter, the essay must be submitted in writing to the Tusculum College admissions office. Entrants may visit Tusculum College’s “Finish Strong Scholarship” website at to submit the online entry form.

A complete copy of the rules may be obtained at the Tusculum College Admissions Office, 60 Shiloh Road, P.O. Box 5051, Greeneville, TN 37743, during normal operation hours, Monday through Friday, or by sending a self-addressed stamped envelope to the above address.

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Batik 2012 012_closeupweb

Doak House Museum to host batik for beginners workshop September 9-10

Posted on 17 August 2016 by

The Doak House Museum will offer a workshop in September to teach the beautiful fiber art process of batik. The workshop will teach the basics of batik for beginners.

Part one of the workshop will be Friday, Sept. 9, from 3-6 p.m., the second half of the class will be Saturday, Sept. 10, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. This unique fabric dyeing and decorating technique uses beeswax and cold-water dye to produce beautiful results on natural fabrics like cotton and silk.

“These workshops are an opportunity for anyone who has had an interest in learning this craft to start from the beginning and learn these processes,” said Dollie Boyd, director of museums at Tusculum College. “I’d encourage anyone to attend, as it requires no previous skills or knowledge to learn.”

The cost is $45 per person and all materials are provided. Space is limited, registration and deposit are required. Contact Boyd at 423-636-8554 or for more information or to pre-register. A deposit is due by August 31.

Dr. Fran Church will be the instructor for the workshop.


Batik is the process of dying fabric using beeswax and cold-water dye.




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Inky Johnson to speak at Tusculum, Aug. 27

Posted on 15 August 2016 by

Former University of Tennessee football student-athlete and now motivational speaker Inky Johnson will be providing a motivational and inspirational program at Tusculum College’s Pioneer Arena on Saturday, Aug. 27 at 5 p.m. on the Greeneville campus.

The event is co-sponsored by Mortgage Investors Group – Office of Nick Hirschy (NMLS Unique Identifier # 491929, TN License # 124766) and South State Contractors, Inc.

On September 9, 2006, it started as a normal college football game at Neyland Stadium. If anything, the event was an afterthought, dropped into the schedule at the last minute.  For Inky Johnson, though, the game changed everything. A routine tackle turned into a life-threatening injury, and nothing has been normal for Inky ever since. Not with a paralyzed right arm. Not with daily pain. Not with constant physical challenges.

His dream had always been to play professional sports. You might think his injury would have destroyed his motivation and crushed his spirit. But that’s only because you don’t know Inky.

Who is Inquoris “Inky” Johnson? He could be described as the survivor of an underprivileged past. He could be described as a refugee of poverty and violence. He could be described as a success story stained by tragedy. But if you look deeper, you’ll discover something else.

You’ll see a man who looks in the face of defeat and says, “Am I really failing, or is God prevailing?” You’ll see a man gripped by the promise that God has purposes and plans far beyond our own. And you’ll be inspired by his relentless determination, which he loves to impart to others through his dramatic story.

Inky has a master’s degree in sports psychology from the University of Tennessee. He devotes much of his time to mentoring athletes and underprivileged youth.

Admission to the event is $10 per person and will be sold at the door on the day of the event beginning at 4 p.m. Tusculum College students, faculty and staff will be admitted free. Students, faculty and staff in the Greeneville and Greene County school systems will also be admitted free.

For more information, please contact Blake Cantrell at: (423) 636-7300 ext. 7331 or email at:

ESPN will have a SC Feature presentation on the Inky Johnson Story which will air this Sunday (Aug. 14) morning at 10 a.m. (EST).



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First students begin Master of Science in Nursing Program

Posted on 15 August 2016 by


Tusculum College first students began the new Master of Science in Nursing program in August.

The family nurse practitioner program is a graduate level Master of Science degree program designed to address the need for more primary healthcare providers in the community.

“In East Tennessee, there is a gap between the number of people who need healthcare and the number of healthcare providers,” said Dr. Lois Ewen, dean of nursing, health sciences and human services. “The nurse practitioner program will help fill that gap in our community,” she added.

“Nurse practitioners provide primary care across the lifespan to people of all ages with simple to complex illnesses. We provide care for patients that have comorbidities. We have the same privileges that family physicians have, such as prescribing medications,” said Dr. Ewen.

“One of the things that is very special about this program, especially in this part of the country, is that we plan to develop an RN to MSN program, which will allow nurses with associate degrees to obtain their master’s degree in six semesters,” said Dr. Ewen.

With this bridge component, Dr. Ewen hopes to serve more nurses in the area and serve the community with quality advanced practice nurses.

Individuals with interest in attending the family nurse practitioner program should contact the nursing department at or 423-636-7430 for more information.  Tusculum College is now accepting applications for admission into the College.

First class enrolled in the Master of Science in Nursing program.

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A note to parents from the President

A note to parents from the President

Posted on 08 August 2016 by




I hope your students are excited about returning to campus!  It has been very quiet here without them.  On the Tusculum campus, we are anxiously working on preparations to get the 2016-17 academic year off to an exciting start. There has been much going on in the past few months that I would like to share with you as you prepare to come back next week.

As of the end of June, we have raised $23.14 million of the $25 million Tusculum First Capital Campaign goal with funds earmarked for the new center for science and math, the growth of academic programs, endowed scholarships, student life improvements, advancements in technology, and an environmental resources and facilities center.

I think you will be surprised to see the progress that has been made on the Ronald H. and Verna June Meen Center for Science and Mathematics. The building will meet strategic needs as the college continues to grow in enrollment and program offerings. We anticipate being in the building by January 2017.

Academic programs being added this fall include the Master of Science in nursing degree with a family nurse practitioner concentration. The family nurse practitioner program is a graduate level program designed to address the need for more primary healthcare providers in the community. When fully implemented, the program will consist of a BSN to MSN track, an RN to MSN track and a post master’s certification track.  Tusculum College will begin offering an associate degree program for the first time in fall of 2016, and enrollment in the program is now open. The Board of Trustees also gave full approval to initiate a Bachelor of Science in health care administration degree program. A Bachelor of Science in computer science, a Bachelor of Science in information technology and a Master of Accountancy were preliminarily approved pending development of the curricula. Also approved was the development of a minor in web design. The new programs will be initiated between now and 2019.

I look forward to seeing you at Parent Weekend, scheduled for Sept. 23-24!


Nancy B. Moody, PhD



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Gilland named director of finance at Tusculum College

Posted on 02 August 2016 by

Crystal Gilland has been named the director of finance at Tusculum College.

Gilland began the new position on August 1, having previously served as executive assistant to the vice president for finance and chief financial officer. Gilland came to Tusculum College in 2012.

Crystal Gilland

“Crystal has long been an asset to the business and finance division and will continue to use her talents to serve Tusculum College in her new role,” said Steve Gehret, vice president for finance and chief financial officer. “In her new capacity, the college will be able to take full advantage of her talents and skills.”

As the director of finance, Gilland will provide leadership, direction and coordination for the oversight of finance and administration for fiscal operations of the college, as well as executive support to the vice president for finance/CFO and the Board of Trustees subcommittees. In this role, she will be responsible for developing and executing financial reporting, contract management, procurement management, vendor relations and administrative oversight of in-house and third-party collections.

“I am very pleased to be able to serve the needs of Tusculum College through my work in the finance department,” said Gilland. “This new position will allow me to continue to play a role in helping Tusculum continue to grow as an institution.”

Gilland graduated Summa Cum Laude in 2010 with a Bachelor of Science in business administration from Grand Canyon University and graduated in 2012 with a Master of Business Administration, also from Grand Canyon University.

She has previously served as office coordinator in the dean’s office for the College of Clinical and Rehabilitative Health Sciences at East Tennessee State University.


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Tusculum art professor Allison releases book

Posted on 02 August 2016 by

The nature of reality, the soul and the soul’s relationship with God is explored through an in-depth look at spiritual awakening in a recently published book by Clem Allison, professor emeritus of art for Tusculum College and Christian lay leader.

The book is titled, “Seeing Beyond: Awakening to the Reality of a Spiritually Interconnected, Evolving World” and is available on

“We are entering a period of transition–a grassroots, global spiritual awakening–that may be the most significant in the history of mankind,” according to Allison.

Through his book, Allison suggests that humankind is experiencing parallel developments of a more encouraging nature. Drawing from growing bodies of evidence in biblical research, quantum physics, medicine and evolutionary psychology, Allison challenges the traditional religious orthodoxies that have trapped Christianity for centuries. Instead, he offers a thought-provoking argument for the idea that far from being detached observers of a divine universal creative process; humans are actually central participants in a spiritually interconnected, evolving, divinely inclusive world.

According to Allison, “Seeing Beyond” will offer readers a fresh perspective on the nature of reality, the soul and the soul’s relationship to God and the world.

Allison has previously served as art department chairman and director of the division of arts and humanities at Tusculum College until his retirement in 1996. He continues to produce and exhibit his own art. He and his wife Beverly live in Greeneville and are the proud parents of twin daughters, Carrie and Jennifer.


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