Tusculum College marked the beginning of its 219th academic year Thursday with Opening Convocation, recognizing new faculty and honoring faculty and staff for longevity of service.
Convening the convocation, Dr. Nancy B. Moody, president of Tusculum College, reminded the students of the history of the college and the values held by its founders. “Since its humble beginning over two centuries ago as Greeneville College, Tusculum College has embraced the same basic principles of citizenship and stewardship, encouraging students to academic excellence and community service, to character development and righteous behavior and to work for a higher purpose than self,” she said.
“Know of Tusculum’s unequalled heritage; embrace Tusculum’s unbounded potential,” Dr. Moody continued. “Therein stands your own unbounded potential, as students and as faculty. We are at a point in our history where you will make a difference, in your society, in your college, in yourself.”
The program also included a call for students to get involved on campus with their time and talents by Vinton Copeland, a senior from LaGrange, Ga., majoring in political science.
“As a senior, I know the importance of getting involved, making an impact. Throughout these years, I have learned that getting involved does not mean signing up myself up for an organization but instead making a contribution, not financially, but mentally and physically,” he said. He cautioned the students from letting distractions delay their progress toward their goals.
Copeland served as vice president of the Student Government Association during his junior year and is a member of the President’s Society, a group of select students who serve as ambassadors for the college. Last year, he started a student gospel choir, which has performed on campus and in local churches.
New faculty members were introduced. They include Dr. Elizabeth Acker, visiting professor of English; Dr. Joshua Bazzy, assistant professor of management; Mr. Kenneth Brewer, visiting assistant professor of psychology; Carrie Dyer, visiting assistant professor of fine arts; Dr. Lois Ewen, dean of the college of nursing; Deborah Gietema, assistant professor of mathematics; Dr. Raymond Hatfield II, assistant professor of education; Dr. Sunday Igoni, assistant professor of management; Amanda Kyker, visiting assistant professor of computer science; Greta Robinette, visiting assistant professor of nursing; Sabrina Rohr, assistant professor of education and sports studies, and Dr. Katherine Smith, visiting assistant professor of psychology.
Head Golf Coach Bob Dibble was honored for 20 years of service to the college. He has coached the men’s team for 22 years at Tusculum and started the women’s program during the 1997-98 season. Dibble’s players have excelled in the classroom as well as on the golf course. Nine players have garnered All-America Scholar Athlete recognition while three of his squads have captured the South Atlantic Conference (SAC) Team Academic Award. He has mentored four SAC Scholar Athletes of the Year. He also served as the head professional at Link Hills Country Club from 1987 to 2000.
Coach Dibble turned pro in 1957 and became a Professional Golf Association (PGA) member in 1964. Dibble has been honored four times with the Tennessee PGA Junior Golf Leader of the Year Award and in 1982, won the Tennessee PGA Horton Smith Award for his contributions to the game of golf. In 1998, he was elected to serve as president of the NAIA Golf Coaches Association by his peers. A veteran, Dibble served in the U.S. Marine Corps.
Honored for 15 years of service were Kristi Dalton, assistant director of financial aid; Doug Jones, head baseball coach; Kathy Joy, academic advisor in the Graduate and Professional Studies program; Mike Joy, head women’s soccer coach; Terri Morgan, a high school Talent Search advisor/counselor, and David Smith, director of Student Support Services.
Ten-year honorees included Mary Halliburton, Knoxville library administrator; Jamie Hamer, associate director of enrollment and marketing director; Dr. Cheri Jones, associate professor of accounting and business law; Stacey McGill, mathematics/science specialist for Upward Bound; Dr. Theran Mugleston, assistant professor of management; Anne Reever Osborne, assistant library director for distance learning, and Sharon Susong, executive assistant for the vice president of enrollment management.
Recognized for five years of service were Barbara Bates, executive assistant for the Tusculum Institute; Jessica Brown, accounts payable specialist; Sonya Campbell, student accounts associate; Penney Davis, telecounselor; Steve Gehret, vice president and chief financial officer; Dr. Tom Harlow, associate professor of psychology; Becky Henderson, enrollment specialist; Dr. Angela Keaton, assistant professor of commons and history; Dr. David Key, assistant professor of history; Marc Kolb, associate head football coach; Stacey McDonald, financial aid counselor; Dr. Sheila Morton, assistant professor of English; LeeAnn Smith, administrative assistant in Admissions and Tutoring Center, and Stephen Thompson, Talent Search advisor.