Archive | February, 2008

Variety of events scheduled to mark Black History Month on Tusculum College campus

Posted on 11 February 2008 by

A presentation by a Tennessee civil rights pioneer, visits to local African-American churches and opportunities to learn from local minority professionals are among the ways that Black History Month is being commemorated during February on the Tusculum College campus.

About 20 different events and activities, both on and off campus, have been scheduled through the efforts of the Office of Multicultural Affairs, a division of Tusculum’s Office of Student Affairs.

Dr. Rita Geier, a pioneer in Tennessee civil rights, will be speaking on Tuesday, Feb. 19, at 7 p.m. in the auditorium of the Annie Hogan Byrd Fine Arts Building. The public is invited to the program, in which Dr. Geier will discuss her experiences as a civil rights pioneer in the South as well as her current position as the associate to the UT Knoxville Chancellor to lead intercultural efforts and implement goals of the university’s diversity plan and “Ready for the World” initiative.

Dr. Geier was a 23-year-old faculty member at Tennessee State University in 1968 when she filed a lawsuit after the University of Tennessee announced plans to expand in Nashville. She feared that UT-Nashville would become a four-year, predominantly white school with top-notch facilities while historically black TSU would be neglected. That lawsuit resulted in the 2001 Geier Consent Decree, which provided $77 million in state funds over six years to diversify student populations and faculty of all state higher education institutions.

Black Sunshine Poets will be returning to campus to perform at 7 p.m. on Wednesday, Feb. 13, in the Pioneer Perk inside the Niswonger Commons. The group uses their lyrical skills, creativity, and talent to perform original pieces that are both thought provoking and entertaining as they display the originality of African-American literature.

During Sundays in February, Tusculum students are also invited to take a closer “Look at the Black Church.”

On Feb. 10, students were invited to join the members of Jones AME Zion Church in Greeneville to celebrate the rich history and heritage of the African-American Methodist Episcopalian Church.

On Feb. 17, students have the chance to explore another facet of religion in the African-American community with a visit to a Baptist church, Friendship Baptist Church in Greeneville.

On Feb. 20, students are invited to join Tate Chapel United Methodist Church for the rededication of the historic church, which has been serving the African-American community in Greenville for over 180 years.

Two events during the month give Tusculum students a unique opportunity to meet and learn from minority professionals in the region.

“Dessert and Discussion: Women’s Panel” was held on Feb. 5, in which students interacted and networked with professionals from the region, including Dr. Pauletta Johnson, a professor of education at Tusculum; Rhea Scruggs, a business owner and an University of Tennessee graduate student; and Chutney Walton, a doctoral candidate at UT and graduate assistant with the Black Cultural Center.

On Tuesday, Feb. 26, it will be the men’s turn. “Dessert and Discussion: Men’s Panel,” will allow students to learn about the professional world from the perspective of those who are living it.

Tusculum students and the community are also encouraged to visit the special Black History exhibit in the Living Room of the Niswonger Commons. The “mini-museum” features information about African-Americans who have made significant contributions in the history of the nation as well as its cultural, sport, and political life.

The Multicultural Affairs Office also has offered students the opportunity to travel to Atlanta for an African-American History Tour including a visit to Ebenezer Baptist Church, the starting pulpit of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.; to participate in the third annual Black Issues Conference at the University of Tennessee at Knoxville; and to attend “Black Violins,” a concert at UT by two classically trained violinists creating a link between hip hop and classical music.

On campus, there will be a showing of an independent film about the African-American experience at 7 p.m. on Wednesday, Feb. 20, and the screening of “Nothing But a Man,” which documents the struggles of an African-American couple in the 1960s, will be Wednesday, Feb. 27. Both films will be shown at 7 p.m. in the Behan Arena Theater in the Annie Hogan Byrd building.

“Pizza and Politics” will feature a discussion of the state of Black America and politics, at 8 p.m. on Thursday, Feb. 21, in the boardroom of the Library on campus. Students will have the opportunity to test their knowledge of African-American history facts at the Black History Bowl, sponsored by Black United Students, at 1 p.m. on Thursday, Feb. 28, in the Pioneer Perk. The month will end with a celebration at 11:45 a.m. on Friday, Feb. 29, in the Niswonger Living Room of the Commons.

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Tusculum College hosts more than 50 families for College Goal Sunday

Posted on 11 February 2008 by


Families receive professional assistance from Tusculum College staff members with filling out the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) during College Goal Sunday.

Held Sunday, Feb. 10, in the Annie Hogan Byrd Fine Arts Building, this event provided 56 students from Northeast Tennessee and their families an opportunity to receive practical, hands-on help in filling out the form that is a prerequisite for receiving financial aid at any college and university as well information about financial aid resources and how to apply for them.

College Goal Sunday is a non-profit program that mobilizes financial aid professionals from Tennessee institutions of higher education to help college-bound students and their families to complete the federal form, which can then filed electronically on-line.

College Goal Sunday is supported and administered by a joint partnership between the Tennessee Student Assistance Corporation, Tennessee Higher Education Commission, and volunteers comprised of members of the Tennessee Association of Financial Aid Administrators, as well as members of Tennessee Association of Collegiate Registrars and Admissions Officers, and the Tennessee Association of Special Programs-TRIO.

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Rebecca Muncy ’05 wins scholarship to attend professional development conference

Posted on 08 February 2008 by

rebeccamuncy.jpgRebecca Muncy ’05, Associate Director for Alumni and Parent Relations, is the recipient of a New2CASE scholarship presented by the Council for Advancement and Support of Education (CASE).

The New2CASE scholarship award includes a waiver of the registration fee for the CASE District III annual conference to be held in Atlanta, February 17-20.

Muncy will attend the CASE District III annual conference to learn ways Tusculum College can better serve its alumni, donors and other constituents.

More About CASE

According to the CASE website, “CASE helps its members build stronger relationships with their alumni and donors, raise funds for campus projects, produce recruitment materials, market their institutions to prospective students, diversify the profession, and foster public support of education. CASE also offers a variety of advancement products and services, provides standards and an ethical framework for the profession, and works with other organizations to respond to public issues of concern, while promoting the importance of education worldwide.

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Free help with FAFSA and financial aid offered at Tusculum College

Posted on 06 February 2008 by

Northeast Tennessee students who need information on how to obtain financial aid for college can find that information, along with practical, hands-on help, for free at Tusculum College this Sunday, Feb. 10, whether they plan to attend Tusculum or some other college or university.

Tusculum College is again welcoming Northeast Tennessee students and prospective students to College Goal Sunday for free, on-site professional assistance in filling out the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). FAFSA completion is a prerequisite to receiving financial aid at any college or university. Financial aid professionals will also be present to talk about financial aid resources and how to apply for them.

The event at Tusculum College will take place from 2 to 4 p.m. in the computer lab located in the Annie Hogan Byrd Fine Arts Building on the campus. That building stands on the corner of Shiloh Road and the Erwin Highway in the town of Tusculum.

College Goal Sunday is a non-profit program that provides free information and assistance to Tennessee families applying for financial assistance for higher education. College Goal Sunday mobilizes financial aid professionals from Tennessee colleges, universities, career colleges, and technology centers to help families of college-bound students complete the FAFSA, the federally required form for students seeking financial aid, including grants, scholarships, and loans, throughout the nation.

Tennessee’s College Goal Sunday Programs will take place on Febuary 10, 2008 at 2 p.m. at locations around the state, including Tusculum College.

Students and families in low-income and minority communities who need help applying for financial aid to attend college should not miss College Goal Sunday. All students and their families are encouraged to attend.

This one-day event will help families of college-bound students take the first step in applying for college by going through a two-hour moderated session that leads to a completed financial aid form for the student, ready to file electronically on-line.

Students and their parents should bring:

  • completed 2007 IRS 1040 tax returns
  • W-2 statements and other 2007 income and benefits information
  • current bank statements
  • untaxed income records for the previous year (Social Security, Temporary Assistance to Needy Families, welfare, or veterans benefits records)
  • driver’s license (if any)
  • alien registration card (if you are not a U.S. citizen).

This information is helpful to complete the FAFSA. Those lacking some of the above items and information may still attend and benefit from College Goal Sunday, however.

Anyone interested in learning more about College Goal Sunday may call 800-342-1663 or email Web information is available at

Students are asked to register using the online Student Registration form accessible at the web site listed above.

Those in the Northeast Tennessee area may also contact Tusculum College Admission Counselor Stephen Thompson at for more information. Students and families who need additional assistance in completing the FAFSA or who are looking for more resources on financial aid may visit or contact the Financial Aid office at any college, university, career college, or technical school.

Even those who are unsure whether they plan to attend college are encouraged to participate in College Goal Sunday. By filling out the FAFSA no obligation to attend college is created; however, by completing the FAFSA form critical deadlines will not be missed if the student decides to apply to college later in the year.

College Goal Sunday is supported and administered by a joint partnership between the Tennessee Student Assistance Corporation, Tennessee Higher Education Commission, and volunteers comprised of members of the Tennessee Association of Financial Aid Administrator, as well as members of Tennessee Association of Collegiate Registrars and Admissions Officers, and the Tennessee Association of Special Programs-TRIO.

Funding for this program comes from Lumina Foundation for Education, an Indianapolis-based, private, independent foundation that strives to expand access and success in education beyond high school.

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‘Mr. Lincoln and Emancipation’ to be focus of presentation

Posted on 05 February 2008 by

lincolnproject.jpgFrom the worn edges of his top hat to the tips of his black shoes, Chris Small is dedicated to bringing Abraham Lincoln to life for the audiences of his living history portrayals of the 16th president.

On the 199th anniversary of Abraham Lincoln’s birth, Chris Small will bring the life, times, character and values of the 16th president to the stage at Tusculum College. “Mr. Lincoln and Emancipation” will be presented by Small at 7 p.m., Tuesday, Feb. 12, in the auditorium of the Annie Hogan Byrd Fine Arts Building on the Tusculum campus. The presentation, part of the Cicero Lecture Series, will be one of many events at the college to commemorate Black History Month in February.

Small will focus on Lincoln’s emerging views on slavery and emancipation in his presentation, part of Tusculum College Arts Outreach’s Acts, Arts, Academia 2007-08 performance and lecture series.

Passionate about sharing the experience of Abraham Lincoln with audiences, Small has given first-person portrayals of the president since 1997. He is the founder of The Lincoln Project, through which he brings the principles and values of Lincoln to his audiences through living history programs that focus on specific beliefs and periods of the 16th president’s life, encouraging audiences to apply the same timeless character traits found in Lincoln to their lives today.

In addition to the program he is to present at Tusculum, Small presents a variety of historical programs about Lincoln tailored to his audience, whether they are schools and organizations, businesses and corporations, or churches. These programs include an overview of the president’s life, the fascinating story of Lincoln’s barber and what their friendship meant for America, an overview of the Civil War, studies of Lincoln’s leadership and response to his life’s challenges, and presentations about Lincoln’s education, poetry, family, values, faith, and speeches.

Small also performs Herbert Mitgrang’s “Mr. Lincoln,” a full length, one-person play that traces the story of the 16th president from is impoverished boyhood to his fateful assassination. Small first performed the play in 1997 at Andrews University.

The mission of The Lincoln Project is to encourage interest in and study of Abraham Lincoln and his time; make Lincoln more accessible to the general public through living historiography, print, film, and other media; further the academic and professional study of Lincoln presentation; and promote the high moral standards and values for which the 16th president is renowned.

Small has written and performed a number of original scripts about Lincoln and academic papers/presentations incorporating Lincoln presentation, such as “Performance Development: Living Historiography from Scratch,” delivered at the 2005 conference of the Central States Communication Association.

Small has a master’s degree in communication with a specialty in interpretation and performance studies. He is trained in and has directed Bibliodrama, playback theatre and the drama methodologies of Augusto Boal. He is a member of the National Communication Association, the Abraham Lincoln Association, a life member of the Association of Lincoln Presenters and may be found on the National Registry of Living Historians.

In addition to his Lincoln endeavors, Small is the co-founder of Small Associates, LLC, and is an educator who has served as an adjunct lecturer at Eastern Michigan University, Concordia University, and Washtenaw Community College, along with volunteer service to several K-12 schools.

With a degree in religion and experience as a Christian pastor in the Michigan Conference of Seventh-Day Adventists, Small also presents religious programs and seminars including first-person Bible portrayals and interactive Bibliodrama.

Admission to the program is $6. For more information, contact Tusculum College Acts Outreach at (423) 798-1620 or visit its Web site at

The Acts, Arts, Academia series is presented by Tusculum College Arts Outreach and supported by Dr. Sam Miller in memory of Mary Agnes Ault Miller, Society of Cicero, Hearts for the Arts, the Tennessee Arts Commission, the National Endowment for the Arts, and Arts Outreach.

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The Presbyterian Outlook Church-College Partnership Award

Posted on 01 February 2008 by

The Presbyterian Outlook has established the “Presbyterian Outlook Church-College Partnership Award” in the amount of $1,000. The award will be given to the college senior who has written what will be judged to be the best essay on the subject, “How my church-related education has equipped me for significant service.”

This year’s winning essay will be published in the Oct. 27 higher education issue of The Outlook. If any other student essay is published, the student will receive an honorable mention award of $200 each.


The Presbyterian Outlook Church-College Partnership Award

  • First place award: $1,000
  • To be given to a graduating senior who presents the best written essay on the subject: “How my education at a PC(USA) church-related college has equipped me for significant service and leadership.”
  • The winning essay will be published in The Presbyterian Outlook.
  • Honorable mention awards of $200 will be awarded to all others whose essays are chosen for publication too.
  • Eligibility: All seniors presently attending a Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.)-related college who will graduate in calendar 2008.
  • Requirements: Submit via e-mail an essay of not more than 1,000 words along with a resume to
  • Deadline: February 29, 2008

Learn more about The Presbyterian Outlook at

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