Addie Hancock has been named “Student of the Block” for Block Two of the fall 2013 semester at Tusculum College for her excellence in the classroom and her leadership as part of the growing band program on campus.
Hancock, a senior from Mooresburg who is majoring in biology with a concentration in pre-medicine and a minor in chemistry, was recognized Tuesday in a brief ceremony in the Niswonger Commons. The “Student of the Block Award” is presented by the Tusculum Office of Student Affairs and was established to recognize individuals who excel in their academic endeavors, campus involvement and/or athletic performance. The award is selected from nominations made by faculty and staff members and plaques telling about the honorees are displayed in the Niswonger Commons and other campus buildings.
A talented musician, Hancock has been among the leaders of the newly formed band program. For the past two years, she has served as drum major of the Marching Band and is a dedicated member of the Concert Band and Jazz Band.
David Price, director of music programs, commended Hancock in his nomination for her leadership by example in the band program as well as her strength of character, hard work and dependability. During the award ceremony, he said that Hancock’s dependability, reliability and leadership with the band has meant that he has been able to turn over some of the band responsibilities to her, freeing him to devote more time to other facets of the program.
The band program has helped increase and show school spirit and expresses students’ passion for the music arts, Hancock said. “The band has been like my second family these past four years and I am truly honored to have served the band as drum major these past two years,” she said. “I think of most of the band members as not just my peers but fellow friends. From this experience, I have learned to be more patient and understanding yet stern and respectful. This experience has made me a better person and a more well-rounded individual.”
Academically, Hancock has excelled in the classroom, said Dr. Debra McGinn, associate professor of biology, who also commended Hancock’s initiative in obtaining on her own an internship last summer at the William J. Jenkins Forensic Center at East Tennessee State University. She has also served as a research assistant for Dr. Rick Thompson, assistant professor of chemistry at Tusculum.
On campus, Hancock is treasurer of Tusculum’s chapter of the Alpha Chi National Honor Society, a member of Beta Sigma Phi and a phonathon caller for the college. She has volunteered during the Old Oak Festival, was a member of the pit orchestra for Theatre-at-Tusculum’s production of “Seussical” and has provided musical accompaniment for the Tusculum College Community Chorus.
In the community, she has volunteered at Holston Home for Children, helping decorate and set up for its May graduation, assisting in cooking Thanksgiving dinner for the past two years and playing in the pit orchestra for the organization’s production of “The Wizard of Oz.”
Hancock’s first impression of Tusculum was as a high school freshmen participating in a band competition. She had heard about Tusculum’s quality of education and the unique dedication of the faculty and staff to student success as a child from her mother Sonya Moore, a 1990 graduate of the college.
“My first impression of Tusculum as a college freshman was remarkable,” Hancock said. “I always had difficulty fitting in or feeling accepted in high school. I was pleasantly happy to discover I felt accepted at Tusculum and it will always feel like a part of home to me.”
Among those who have had a positive influence on Hancock’s life are her mother, who has raised Addie and her three brothers as a single parent; Price, McGinn, Thompson, Dr. Karen Cline and Lillian Burchnell, who is assistant to the science and math faculty. “They have helped to shape the person I have become, and I hope the person I have become is someone they can look upon and be proud,” she said.
After graduating next May, Hancock plans to continue her education in medical school and aspires to a career in forensic pathology. Her advice to future Tusculum students is that they can make any dream come true if they work hard enough to make it a reality. “Remember the world is a competitive place so if at first you don’t succeed pick yourself up and try again,” she said. “Failing doesn’t make you worthless. Failure is no fun, but it teaches us how to recover when an obstacle knocks you down or obscures your path. If you have the will and determination to make something happen it will but you have to go after it. Waiting for your dreams to come to you is a waste of your time.”