Archive | May, 2014

Class of 1964 honored as special participants in spring commencement

Class of 1964 honored as special participants in spring commencement

Posted on 21 May 2014 by

Thirteen members of the Class of 1964 celebrated their 50th anniversary as special participants in the spring commencement, leading the graduates in the procession during the ceremony. The weekend also included special events to welcome these newest Golden Pioneers back to campus, including a reception at the President’s House. One of those class members, James Southerland, shares his experiences with in the following article:

How could it possibly be half a century since walking across that stage to graduate from Tusculum?  A lot has happened in those 50 years, both personally and at Tusculum College. Marriages, births, deaths, more degrees and skills, successes, failures and a plethora of other events and memories on a personal level, Vietnam, September 11, a string of good and not so good presidents, a collage of national state and local events, from military involvements to weather disasters, heroes and dastardly individuals and deeds, all blurred in a collage of human destinies.

Yet, McCormick Hall and the Arch still stand as icons of Tusculum College. However, if you snap your fingers to bring you back to the present, you see many changes that have occurred on campus. There are more dorms, the faculty apartments in the Old College have been replaced by the President Andrew Johnson Museum and Library, the Doak House has become a host of many events from school children and traditional music on Friday nights (but Frank Creek and the old spring still gurgle by), a new athletic complex involving baseball, football, tennis, the Niswonger Commons for basketball and other venues and buildings. Some of the old dorms no longer house students, but a plethora of teachers and administrative personnel. The old steam plant if gone, as are the old water tanks. The mighty oak at the Old College has reached new heights and has received recognition in the annals of “tree-dom” as one of the largest in the state.

A fairly new tradition of Golden Pioneers was launched a few years back; consequently us old dudes from the class of 1964 were summoned to these hallowed grounds the weekend of May 10 to reminisce and reenact some aspects of those earlier days.


Members of the Class of 1964 participating in the spring commencement ceremonies were, from left, Norman Wilhoit, John Peterson III, Roger Abramson, Gene Gaby, Jesse Brock, Marty Bass Bishop, Wade Nystrom, Leta Jo Ramsey Price, James Southerland, Shirley Ward Gregg, Joan Hirsch Werry, Cliff Ott and Linda Haun Plankenhorn.

Dr. Nancy B. Moody presents Linda Plankenhorn with her medallion during the reception at the President's House. The Tusculum President presented each of the Golden Pioneers with a medallion.

The Golden Pioneers’ schedule started with a reception at the President’s House. Dr. Nancy Moody and Mr. Tom Moody greeted the baker’s dozen or so that returned for the occasion, along with their spouses and others.  We were all shuttled to the door in a sprinkle of rain in a golf cart from parking at the bottom of the hill. After a period of getting reintroduced and reminiscing of the good old days,  and intervening events, a toast was proposed and amended by individual contributions, including a remembrance of those who were no longer among us.  Dr. Moody and Tom circulated among us getting acquainted and prying some stories from the class ventures from us as they progressed. They were very gracious hosts.


The group of Golden Pioneers, their spouses and family members posed with Dr. Moody for a group photo before heading to the Whistle Stop for dinner.

After an hour and a half or so allotted to catching up, we changed venue and regrouped at the Whistle Stop restaurant, which is now housed in the old Dobson’s Store structure, at the bottom of the hill, for a very nice dinner from the menu. The food and camaraderie were enjoyed by all. A special word of thanks to Joni Parker of the College staff, my “elbow mate” at Whistle Stop, who coordinated all the events for the Golden Pioneers over the weekend.

Cliff Ott and graduating senior Addie Hancock present Dr. Moody with a combined class gift of $3,128 during the commencement ceremony.

On graduation morning, (after parking in our reserved spots) we gathered at the Perk in Niswonger Commons, for breakfast and to receive golden gowns, mortars, tassels and instructions. We were lined up in alphabetical order and marched in to the graduation arena to our reserved seats with graduating students (only half of the class as the number of graduates has grown such that there are now two sessions of commencement) marching in behind us and faculty in front of us. It was a far cry from the 80-plus graduates in 1964. There were a total of just over 300 by the time the event was concluded in the afternoon. The Golden Pioneers were recognized as a group and then individuals were asked to stand when our names were called. The obligatory speeches were highlighted by an outstanding and enthusiastic talk from a graduating scholar and athlete. A graduation ceremony is pointless without the walk of the graduates to pick up their diplomas. To friends and family and to the individual graduates is the moment to be remembered for a lifetime. To a group of old dudes in the audience it is not only a highlight of enjoyment and reflection with these individuals, but also a seemingly endless time of the marching of feet across the stage with a plethora of foot wear, ranging from tennis shoes, flats, difficult to describe spikes and amazingly thick soles. We congratulate and salute all those new graduates and wish them well.

Following the ceremony, we retired back to the Perk so to leave our golden garb and have a lunch with the other Golden Pioneers, before returning to our mostly “retired” lives. I wish to give a special appreciation to Michelle Arbogast of the college staff who volunteered to escort my almost 93-year old mother to a special seat and retrieve her at the end of the event in the ensuing crowd. The event was flawless from where we sat, and Tusculum should be proud of Dr. Moody and all staff involved, including the hospitality assistants and the Presidents house, the security staff, the maintenance staff who set up the gymnasium, and all the others involved.

By James Southerland ’64

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Tusculum College receives $5,000 grant from First Tennessee Foundation

Tusculum College receives $5,000 grant from First Tennessee Foundation

Posted on 21 May 2014 by

Tusculum College will be a recipient of a $5,000 First Tennessee Foundation’s 150 Days of Giving grant.

First Tennessee is providing one $5,000 grant per day for 150 days as a way to celebrate their 150th anniversary. Supporters of Tusculum College have been voting daily in order to reach the highest spot and receive the grant.  The college is the winner for May 15.

The 150 Days of Giving campaign is First Tennessee Bank’s way of celebrating 150 years of service. A new nonprofit organization will be awarded $5,000 every day for the duration of the 150-day celebration. Winners are determined by the number of votes cast in their favor.

“We are so fortunate that Tusculum College has such avid supporters that we were able to get the number of votes necessary to secure one of the 150 grants,” said Michelle Arbogast, associate director of foundations and donor relations for the college. Arbogast said the grant will be used to support academic and student life programs at the college.

Tusculum College President Nancy B. Moody thanked everyone who supported the campaign and voted in the online competition. She added that First Tennessee has been a partner with Tusculum College in many ways throughout the years and has been a strong supporter of educational initiatives.

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Potential new academic offerings discussed by Board of Trustees

Potential new academic offerings discussed by Board of Trustees

Posted on 19 May 2014 by

Potential new academic offerings at Tusculum College were discussed by members of the Board of Trustees when the Board held their spring meeting at the Greeneville campus May 16-17.

The board met for two days, which included the annual President’s Dinner celebration held on Friday night to celebrate the college’s major donors.

The board approved the recommendation of the Academic Affairs Committee to proceed with research and due diligence in investigating new programs to potentially add to the college’s current academic offerings in both the residential and Graduate and Professional Studies programs.

“Tusculum College wants to continue to be the institution that is meeting the needs of its students and its future students. By continuously looking at our offerings and keeping up with what potential students are looking for in educational degrees and by anticipating what the job market will be, we will remain a relevant contributor to the economic well being of our region,” said President Nancy B. Moody.

The board also received an update on the Ronald H. and Verna June Meen Center for Science and Math from the Building and Grounds Committee. Construction is set to begin this summer, with a completion time set for January 2016.

The Meen Center for Science and Math will be a four-story structure of approximately 94,000 square feet. Interiors include wings for biology, chemistry, mathematics, computer science, environmental science and nursing. There will also be lab space and research areas for both faculty and students.

The ground floor features the environmental science wing with a loading dock, as well as larger general classroom spaces and classrooms equipped for distance learning programs. A large lecture hall will also be included on the ground floor. Additional space on the fourth floor is earmarked for a new yet to be determined academic program.

“We have been anxious for this facility to become a reality for a long time,” said Dr. Ken Bowman, chair of the Board of Trustees and a 1970 graduate of Tusculum College. “It’s an exciting time to be a part of Tusculum College.”

The promotion of Dr. Troy Goodale to associate professor of political science was approved by the Board. Dr. Goodale joined Tusculum College in 2006 and is the author of a book, “Repealing State Legislative Term Limits: A Comparative Analysis of Legislative Statutes and Judicial Decision.”  In addition to his teaching duties, Dr. Goodale serves the college as chair of the political science and criminal justice programs, as the pre-law advisor and as faculty sponsor of the Alpha Chi National Honor Society.

In other action, the board gave preliminary approval to the 2014-15 operating budget and received a report on academic and office space conducted on campus facilities. Several classrooms have been refurbished, including academic spaces in five buildings on the Greeneville campus.

The next meeting of the Tusculum College Board of Trustees is October 16-17, in conjunction with the college’s Homecoming festivities.

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Dr. Nancy Moody celebrates five year anniversary as president; presented resolution

Posted on 19 May 2014 by

Dr. Kenneth A. Bowman, right, chair of the Tusculum College Board of Trustees, presents a resolution from the Tennessee General Assembly of the State of Tennessee recognizing Dr. Nancy B. Moody for her contributions, hard work and dedication to the State of Tennessee and her community.

Dr. Nancy B. Moody, president of Tusculum College, was recognized Friday, May 16, for marking her fifth year at Tusculum College and for her successful leadership during that time. She has served as president of Tusculum College since 2009.

In recognition, Dr. Kenneth A. Bowman, chair of the board and 1970 alumnus of the college, presented her with a signed copy of a resolution for the Tennessee General Assembly recognizing her hard work and success.

Dr. Moody was honored for her contributions to education and to the community, state and region. The resolution was requested by freshman political science student Montreal Fisher of Springfield, to recognize her contributions and was presented at the college’s Board of Trustees meeting.

The resolution recognizes her for her “intense dedication and hard work that has had a significant impact on the State of Tennessee and her remarkable contributions to her community.”

Since assuming the college presidency as the first female in Tusculum’s history to hold the position, Dr. Moody has faced several challenges. She led the college through a successful reaffirmation of accreditation process with the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges and guided the college towards greater financial stability.

During her tenure, she has secured a $45 million Community Facilities direct loan for the construction of two new apartment style residence halls, a science and math facility and to refurbish an existing academic building.  Dr. Moody led efforts that secured a $3.875 million gift for the naming of the Ronald H. and Verna June Meen Center for Science and Math that will be completed in 2016.

The college’s board of trustees recognized Dr. Moody’s contributions to Tusculum by presenting her with the inaugural Founder’s Award in February 2013. The Founders’ Award, named in memory of Rev. Samuel Doak, Rev. Samuel Witherspoon Doak and Rev. Hezekiah Balch, is presented by the Tusculum College Board of Trustees to recognize those who with integrity, tenacity, commitment, ingenuity and drive have moved Tusculum College forward in serving its students, its community and the world at large.

According to Dr. Kenneth A. Bowman, chair of the Board of Trustees and 1970 alumnus of the college, Dr. Moody has embraced the opportunity to encourage faculty, staff, students and volunteers to push Tusculum College forward through creative teaching and learning, responsible stewardship and a renewed commitment to service and civic engagement. She has led Tusculum College into a new era of growth and expansion, in terms of bricks and mortar, academic programs and opportunities and fiscal responsibility.

Under her leadership new academic programs have been systematically researched and implemented, including programs in nursing, chemistry and criminal justice. Additionally, a bachelor of psychology degree and a Master of Business Administration degree were added in the Graduate and Professional Studies program.

Among other significant accomplishments in her first five years, Dr. Moody was instrumental in obtaining a $263,996 grant from the BlueCross BlueShield of Tennessee Health Foundation for the acquisition of a simulation laboratory for use in the nursing program and other health-related programs by Tusculum College students and staff and area community partners. The simulation lab is used to produce highly-qualified BSN graduates skilled at clinical decision-making, who will provide safe, competent and improved health care for future generations of Tennesseans.

Partnerships with other institutions are at an all-time high. Tusculum College has arranged articulation and affiliation agreements with regional community colleges and professional schools to both increase enrollment in the bachelor’s degree programs, as well as afford expedited graduate school opportunities for alumni of Tusculum College.

According to Dr. Bowman, Dr. Moody has successfully sought new gifts, donors and partnerships in order to ensure the success of the new and existing programs. Working with donors, foundations and government agencies, she has encouraged the investment of millions of dollars into Tusculum College’s growth over the past four years.

“She has engaged with alumni and friends of the College, encouraging their continued interest and support in the institution. She has reminded all of the Tusculum community what it means to be a Tusculum Pioneer,” said Dr. Bowman.

Prior to joining Tusculum College, Dr. Moody was president of Lincoln Memorial University for seven years.  Under her leadership, LMU’s enrollment increased by 90 percent.  The university also initiated the Lincoln Memorial University-DeBusk College of Osteopathic Medicine and expanded the Caylor School of Nursing to include a master of science in nursing degree program with family nurse practitioner and nurse anesthesia concentrations.  Other programs initiated under her leadership included a master’s degree program preparing physician’s assistants and a doctorate of education degree.

A registered nurse, Dr. Moody began her academic career as a nursing instructor for Lincoln Memorial University in 1974 and advanced to hold several academic leadership positions there – including dean of the School of Nursing and Allied Health –  prior to being named LMU president.  Her career also includes serving as the executive director of the Tennessee Center for Nursing, as an assistant professor of nursing in the College of Nursing at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville, and as associate professor and department chair in the College of Nursing at East Tennessee State University.

She is a member of the Board of Trustees of the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges, chair of the NCAA DII South Atlantic Conference, and an advisory board member for the Northeast Tennessee College and Career Readiness Consortium funded through an Investing in Innovation (i3) grant funded by the U. S. Department of Education.  Previously Dr. Moody served on the NCAA DII President’s Council, was chair of the Tennessee Independent Colleges and Universities Association (TICUA), and a member of the Board of the Appalachian Colleges Association (ACA).

Dr. Moody received her associate’s and bachelor’s degrees in nursing from Eastern Kentucky University and earned a master of science in nursing from the Texas Women’s University Institute of Health Sciences-Houston Center in 1978.  She also received a doctorate in nursing from the University of Alabama at Birmingham’s School of Nursing.

In addition to the Founder’s Award, Dr. Moody has been awarded the Eastern Kentucky University’s Outstanding Alumna in the College of Health Sciences, the Hall of Distinguished Alumni, the Alma E. Gault Leadership Award from the Tennessee Nurses Association and the Texas Woman’s University Chancellor’s Alumni Excellence Award.

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Alumni news: keep you with your classmates in Class Notes

Alumni news: keep you with your classmates in Class Notes

Posted on 19 May 2014 by






Commander John Redden ’65, USN Retired, has written that a recent communication from his Alma Mater brought back memories of an early September day in 1961 when he called Marion Edens to inform him that he could not come to Tusculum the following Sunday.  Despite working two part-time jobs before and after school in his senior year of high school and three jobs during that summer, he had not saved enough money.  In just five days, Edens arranged for a $500 scholarship through his local Presbyterian church. He returned home after one semester to work full time and returned to Tusculum the following fall with a part time job at the Suburban Motel.  The following year his part time job was at King Arthur’s Court. His two and a half years at Tusculum qualified him to enter flight training in the Navy, which led to his career as a carrier pilot.  He said he would not have achieved his childhood dream of flying off of carriers if a very dedicated director of admissions had not taken the time to make it happen. “I will always honor Mr. Edens and Tusculum for the opportunities that the college opened to me.”












Tim Wuest ’78, Herb Bonner ‘78, Rick Scott ‘77 and Leo Holihan ’78 met in Springfield, OH, on March 22 of this year for a mini-reunion.  Tim lives near Cincinnati, Herb near Columbus, Rick in Raleigh, NC, and Leo near Dayton.



The Rev. Nell Stanton Grimm ’85 of Lillington, NC, has opened an independent practice as a counselor in Raleigh, NC.



Former Tusculum Pioneer quarterback Bo Cordell ’13, a native of Cincinnati, OH, has signed a free agent contract to play with the Montreal Alouettes of the Canadian Football League. Cordell is the third player from the Tusculum football program to play in the CFL. He played at Tusculum from 2009-2013 and achieved the most prolific passing career in NCAA Division II history.  The All-American owns 15 NCAA II records, including career passing yards (16,265 – fourth in all NCAA divisions), career completions (1,397 – third all NCAA divisions), career pass attempts (2,187 – third all NCAA divisions) career total offensive yards (16,432 – fourth all NCAA divisions) and total offensive plays in a career (2,572 – second all NCAA divisions). Cordell was named the 2013 South Atlantic Conference Offensive Player of the Year, becoming the first football standout to earn the honor multiple times (2010 and 2013).




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11805 College Grad Fact Sheet

Attention Recent Graduates

Posted on 15 May 2014 by

As you begin the next chapter of your life, Tusculum College would like to make you aware of options related to federal law and your health insurance plans. The attached information describes the healthcare opportunities now available to graduates. This document lays out the options available including getting health insurance through employer-based coverage, staying on a parent’s plan until the age of 26, as well as going to to choose a plan in the Health Insurance Marketplace.

As you may know, graduation is a general mile marker for many significant life changes, such as expired student health insurance or moving from home, that trigger a “Special Enrollment Period” that allows a 60-day window for students to sign up for coverage in the marketplace even though the open enrollment period has ended.

Departing students who don’t have insurance through a job or new educational opportunity have two opportunities through the new health law:

• To check out the marketplace:<>

• Potentially stay on their parents insurance until they are 26.

Again congratulations on joining our alumni ranks! You will now begin receiving our Alumni newsletter and Tusculum magazine. We want to make sure we have your current contact information, so at your earliest convenience, please email with your address, phone number and email address. Or you may contact Assistant Alumni Director Joni Parker at 423.636.7303 to update contact information or for any other assistance you may need.


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Nurses Week Celebration Walk held Monday on campus

Posted on 13 May 2014 by

A group of the more than 30 people, above, who participated in the first National Nurses Celebration Walk prepare to begin the walk Monday evening on a section of the Tusculum Trail that passes through Tusculum College. The walk, hosted by the Tusculum College School of Nursing and Health Sciences, was scheduled to mark the ending of National Nurses Week and to celebrate the efforts of the 1,000 nurses in the Greene County area. Prior to the walk, a brief program was held at Pioneer Field near the walking trail. Dr. Nancy B. Moody, president of Tusculum College, shared her personal experiences as a nurse and expressed her appreciation of the nurses in the region. Alan Broyles, Greene County mayor, read a resolution declaring May 6-12 as National Nurses Week in Greeneville and Greene County. Greeneville Mayor W.T. Daniels signed the resolution but was unable to attend the event. May 12 is the birthday of Florence Nightingale, the founder of modern nursing. The celebration was co-sponsored by Laughlin Memorial Hospital, Takoma Regional Hospital and Walters State Community College’s Department of Nursing in Greeneville, as well as the Tusculum School of Nursing and Health Sciences.

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More than 300 receive degrees Saturday during spring commencement exercises

More than 300 receive degrees Saturday during spring commencement exercises

Posted on 10 May 2014 by

More than 300 individuals received degrees during Tusculum College’s spring commencement ceremonies on Saturday, May 10, including the presentation of an honorary doctorate to former Navy commander and alumnus Capt. Samuel L. Doak.

Ninety-eight students earned Bachelor of Science degrees and 152 earned Bachelor of Arts degrees. In addition, 19 graduates earned Master of Arts degrees in education, 14 earned Master of Business Administration degrees and 27 earned Master of Arts in Teaching degrees.

The new graduates were addressed by Tusculum President Nancy B. Moody, who congratulated them on their accomplishment. “Each of you made sacrifices, made adjustments and made some tough decisions along the way,” she said. “You have worked hard and you have given something of yourself to earn the right to sit in that chair this morning and to walk across this stage.”

Congressman Phil Roe addresses graduates during the morning ceremony.

The graduates were addressed during the morning ceremony by U.S Rep. Phil Roe (R-1), who challenged the graduates to keep learning all their lives. With the tremendous pace of change in the world, graduates have to be adapt rapidly to challenges, he continued.

Roe shared three secrets of career success with the graduates. “Number one, show up on time,” he said. “Number two, give your best effort every single day, and number three, be a team player.” For success in their personal lives, Roe advised the graduates to put God first in their lives, put family second, their careers third and fourth, give back to the community. Roe was introduced by respected local businessman and philanthropist Dr. Scott M. Niswonger, who is a 1987 graduate of Tusculum and received an honorary degree from the college in 2006.

Receiving an honorary doctorate of public service was Capt. Doak, who is a 1949 alumnus of the college and has served a valued and influential member of the Board of Trustees for 21 years. “Through service, leadership and lifelong support of the College, Capt. Doak exemplifies the Civic Art values that Tusculum College has promoted for 220 years,” said Dr. Moody in conferring the degree.

Capt. Samuel S. Doak, left, a 1949 alumnus of Tusculum and a member of its Board of Trustees, was conferred an honorary doctorate during the afternoon commencement ceremony. Presenting him the diploma and hood are Dr. Melinda Dukes, center, vice president for academic affairs and Dr. Nancy B. Moody, Tusculum president.

Doak, a direct descendent of the founders of the college, distinguished himself during his 30-year career in the Navy, and has contributed his time to building the local community through such activities as teaching senior citizen driving courses. He is an active and dedicated member of Greeneville Cumberland Presbyterian Church and as a regular attendee of First Presbyterian Church of Greeneville. He has also served his Alma Mater as director of alumni affairs.

He and his wife, Emily, are frequently seen supporting art programs, athletic events, lecture programs and other outreach programs of the college. “Sam and Emily have been generous contributors to Tusculum College throughout their lives, supporting the growth, expansion and mission of the College at the highest levels,” Dr. Moody said. “These gifts have impacted the lives of thousands of students who lead better lives today because of the generosity of these two Pioneers who have blazed the trail that others might follow and have the opportunity for a college education. “

Graduating senior Addie Hancock of Mooresburg, center, and Cliff Ott, a member of the Class of 1964, present a combined class gift of $3,128 to Dr. Nancy B. Moody.

Walking with this spring’s graduates were 13 representatives of the Tusculum College Class of 1964 who are celebrating their 50th anniversary year. Representatives walked in the procession, clothed in golden caps and gowns and were recognized during the ceremony by Dr. Moody. The Golden Pioneers, along with the Class of 2014, presented a check to Dr. Moody for $3,128 as a gift to the college.

Four student speakers addressed the graduates, including Ashley Sarmiento, a double major in math and math education who represented her fellow bachelor degree graduates in the morning ceremony. She challenged her fellow graduates to be unforgettable. “It is our turn to give back to others, share our wisdom, show our love and leave a mark on others’ lives,” said Sarmeinto, who is from Dayton, Ohio. She encouraged her fellow graduates to always thank those who have made a significant impact in their lives and  to “go with purpose to leave an unforgettable impact on others like Tusculum College has done for us.”

Suzanne Richey, left, and Ashley Sarmiento represented their fellow graduates as speakers in the morning ceremony.

Selected to speak on behalf of the students earning master’s degrees during the morning ceremony was Suzanne Richey, who earned a graduate degree in education with a concentration in organizational training and education. Richey, who lives in Greeneville, expressed appreciation to her parents, who are also Tusculum alumni, as well as her teachers during her formative years and Tusculum professors who nurtured her love of learning and challenged her to reach goals she thought unattainable.

Congratulating her fellow graduates, Richey encouraged them to “Keep learning. Keep evaluating what you know. Keep your mind open to new ideas and diverse opinions. Read what you disagree with and understand why you disagree. Learn from anyone who will mentor you. And most importantly, keep sharing what you know and what you think with others.”

Speakers at the afternoon Tusculum College commencement service were Shalee Tipton of Maryville and Danielle Warren of Knoxville. Tipton is graduating with a bachelor science degree in organizational management. Warren is graduating with a bachelor’s degree in business administration.

Shalee Tipton, left, and Danielle Warren were selected as the speakers to represent their fellow graduates during the afternoon ceremony.

The first college graduate in her family, Tipton spoke about the support she has had from family, friends, co-workers, faculty and her fellow classmates. As a student at Tusculum, she said she has learned that she can accomplish her goals and that determination is the key to success.

As she has thought of graduation, Tipton said she has contemplated the meaning prosperity. While many think of that word in financial terms, she said, “I do believe that the best definition of prosperity is to thrive or flourish and my wish for each of my fellow graduates is that you leave this journey feeling prepared and energized for the next phase of your life.”

Warren recalled her educational journey began almost four years ago as she was invited to a Tusculum commencement by a close friend who was earning a degree and watching the graduates earn their degrees inspired to begin the process to achieve her own educational aspirations.

“One of the most valuable lessons that I will take with me from my time at Tusculum is the power of teamwork,” Warren said. “I have always been fiercely independent, so learning to rely on others was challenging at first. . . . If it had not been for the patience and support of my family and friends; the dedication and mentorship of the faculty and staff; and of course, my fabulous learning team, I would not be standing before you today.”

The afternoon ceremony featured a sermon by Tusculum Chaplain Mark Stokes in which he challenged the graduates to make a positive impact in the world around them. Noting the example of Tabitha in the Bible, who made clothes for needy widows, Stokes said she was placed by God in a place and time in which her skills were needed by others in her community.   Stokes challenged the graduates to allow God to guide them to the place where their skills and talents can make the lives of others better. “Can you make a positive impact?” he asked the graduates. “With God’s help, I am willing to believe you can.”

Receiving the Teaching Excellence and Campus Leadership award for the Residential College was Dr. Bill Garris, associate professor of psychology who has led the college’s Quality Enhancement Program initiative. Receiving the award for the Graduate and Professional Studies program was Dr. Peggy Goodson-Rochelle, assistant professor of education.

10 a.m. Commencement Ceremony Program

1:30 p.m. Commencement Ceremony Program

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Doak House Museum to host art and history summer camps

Posted on 06 May 2014 by

The Doak House Museum is now taking reservations for its two summer campus for children.

“History Around the World” camp will be held June 16 -20 from 9:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. each day. During the camp, children will discover the world as it was 200 years ago through fun activities, crafts and games. All materials and a daily snack are provided.

“Art Around the World” camp is scheduled July 7 -11, from 9:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. each day. Participants will take a trip around the world with five days of projects inspired by the art of the Americas, Asia, Europe, India and Africa. All materials and a daily snack will be provided.

The two camps are open to children ages 6-12. The tuition is $85 per child with sibling and Tusculum College faculty, staff and student discounts available.

Space is limited and a deposit is required. Please contact Dollie Boyd at 423-636-8554 or to reserve a spot.

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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Explatory Task Force formed to research options to restart local community theater

Posted on 06 May 2014 by

A second meeting of community members, interested in forming a local theatre group, met on Saturday, May 3, at Tusculum College.

Facilitated by Arts Outreach artist-in-residence Marilyn duBrisk, and assisted by Arts Outreach assistant director Brian Ricker, the group examined the visions and options discussed at the first meeting on April 6, and concluded that there was enough local support and interest to move forward.

Everyone present enthusiastically selected an Exploratory Task Force charged with reviewing and researching options and queries agreed upon by those present, and will report back to the group with their recommendations.

The task force of seven are; Margo Olmsted, Stuart Hoeke, Paige Mengel, Laura Dupler, Sandy Nienaber, Judi Austin and Bill Regan.

“It is obvious that the talent and expertise is present within this creative group,” duBrisk said, “all of us at Arts Outreach are thrilled by the response and are ready to help wherever we can.”

The next meeting will be scheduled by the Exploratory Task Force.

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National Nurses Week Celebration Walk set for Monday, May 12 at 6 p.m.

Posted on 05 May 2014 by

A National Nurses Week Celebration Walk has been scheduled for Monday, May 12, to mark the ending of National Nurses Week. Registration for the event will begin at 5:30 p.m., with the event itself beginning at 6 p.m. at Pioneer Field on the Tusculum College campus.

The event is sponsored by the Tusculum College School of Nursing and Health Sciences, Laughlin Memorial Hospital and Takoma Regional Hospital and is designed as a celebration of the 1,000 nurses in the Greene County area. A brief program will take place in the stadium before the walk on the Tusculum Trail begins.

“We are having the Nurses Week Walk to celebrate the accomplishments of the Greene County nurses,” said Dr. Lois Ewen, dean of nursing and health sciences at Tusculum College. “We want to recognize their hard work and dedication to the citizens of Greene County.”

May 12 is the birthday of Florence Nightingale, the founder of modern nursing. This year’s theme for National Nurses Week, “Nurses: Leading the Way,” recognizes nurses as leaders at the bedside, in the boardroom, throughout communities and in the halls of government.

No preregistration is required and everyone is welcome to attend. Hosts will be providing the opportunity to make a donation on behalf of a nurse to Second Harvest Food Bank. Funds collected will be used to help feed underprivileged Greene County students in the summer

In case of rain, the event will be moved to the Indoor Practice Facility on the Tusculum Campus. For more information, contact Dr. Ewen at

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Winkelmann named ‘Student of the Block’ for Seventh Block

Winkelmann named ‘Student of the Block’ for Seventh Block

Posted on 05 May 2014 by

Tennis Head Coach Tommy Arnett, left, presents Lukas Winkelmann with the “Student of the Block” award during a ceremony on May 1.

Lukas Winkelmann, a junior from Boeblingen, Germany, has been recognized as “Student of the Block” for the Seventh Block at Tusculum College.

Winkelmann, who is majoring in pre-medicine, was recognized Thursday, May 1, 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.

Tommy Arnett, head coach of men’s and women’s tennis, nominated Winkelmann for the honor. During the ceremony, Arnett said that Winkelmann’s numerous achievements in the classroom and on the court speak for themselves, and he wanted to speak about Winkelmann as a individual. Three words that come to mind when he thinks about Winkelmann are “caring, passionate and leadership.”

Arnett said he has watched Winkelmann interact with the children, his peers and faculty and staff, and it is obvious he is a caring person. “By passionate, I mean that Lukas puts 100 percent into whatever he does – he goes above and beyond what is expected,” Arnett said.

During his time at Tusculum, Winkelmann has grown as a person and a leader, and Arnett said he appreciates the leadership he has shown as captain of the tennis team.

As he accepted the award, Winkelmann thanked Coach Arnett and his science professors for the encouragement and assistance they have given him. He noted that Coach Arnett emphasizes to tennis team members that academics are to come first and while the coach, of course, wants them to excel on the court, he checks regularly to make sure they are doing well academically.

Winkelmann also thanked Bobbie Greenway, an academic counselor at Tusculum, whom he described as his “mom at Tusculum.” Greenway was Winkelmann’s first advisor at Tusculum and helped him as an international student get acclimated to the college and also helped him in his efforts to improve his English.  “She welcomed me with a big heart and put forth a lot of effort in helping me to become successful here at Tusculum. When you are in an unfamiliar area, it pays to have someone that you can trust that will not take advantage of you.”

He also thanked former teammates Steven Lin, a 2012 Tusculum graduate, and Luis Zamora, a 2013 graduate, for providing an example of success for him to follow on both the court and in the classroom and encouraging him to be the best he can be.

As well as serving as captain of the men’s tennis team, he is a member of the Tusculum Chapter of the Alpha Chi National Honor Society and the Pioneer Student Athletic Advisory Council.

Winkelmann has been recognized numerous times for his success on the tennis court and in the classroom. Last week, he was honored as the South Atlantic Conference Scholar Athlete of the Year for men’s tennis, the second straight year he has received the honor. He has also been recognized for the past two years as the conference’s Men’s Tennis Player of the Year for his accomplishments on the court.

During the 2013-14 season, Winkelmann posted a perfect 23-0 singles record and 20-3 record in doubles, including 19-2 with his younger brother Jonas, who joined his brother last year as a student at Tusculum and member of the tennis team.

As a sophomore, Winkelmann was named to the 2012-13 Capital One Academic All-America® first team, the first Tusculum sophomore to garner Academic All-America® first team distinction. He has been named the Tusculum College Male Athlete of the Year in each of the last two years and recognized as the most valuable player of the tennis team three times.

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