Tag Archive | "Faculty and Staff"

Daily Bread2web 6-10-11

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Tusculum College Staff Council service project results in 400-item donation to Daily Bread in Morristown

Posted on 20 July 2011 by srichey@tusculum.edu

The Tusculum College Staff Council completed a service project in June, delivering more than 400 cans of food to the Daily Bread in Morristown.

The staff of Tusculum College completed the food drive in June and delivered the items personally to the organization.

The Daily Bread is an organization in the Morristown downtown area. It was started by Hobe Williams, who is now 86, to feed the hungry. He started out as a service for the homeless, now he feeds anyone in need.

According to Audrey Brackens, projects and events chairman for the Tusculum College Staff Council, Williams relies solely on donations to operate, he gets no federal funding. Brackens and her committee organized the food drive project for Tusculum College.

“This was an opportunity for the staff of Tusculum College to come together in service and really make an impact,” said Michelle Arbogast, president of the Staff Council. “We were overwhelmed with the participation and the success of the project was the result of so many people participating.”

The mission of the Tusculum College Staff Council is to improve communications across the college campuses and build morale for all employees of Tusculum College. The council strives to enhance the overall quality of work life for the Tusculum College staff and increase employee engagement in the larger college community by providing educational development and social opportunities for staff employees.


Tusculum College staff members participating in the delivery of the items to the Daily Bread homeless and needy kitchen were from left, Jamie Hamer, director of marketing and associate director of enrollment for the Graduate and Professional Studies program: JoAnn Swecker, administrative clerk; David Watts of Facilities Management; Hobe Williams, of the Daily Bread organization; Pat Stansberry, faculty clerical assistant; Audrey Brackens, clerical assistant to the Registrar, and Mandy Altum, communications clerk.

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Rachel Edens named program coordinator for Tusculum College’s Center for Civic Advancement

Posted on 15 July 2011 by srichey@tusculum.edu

As of June 1, Rachel Edens joined Tusculum College in the Center for Civic Advancement (CCA) as the new program coordinator.  Edens will take over duties from former CCA Director Joyce Doughty, who retired at the end of July after many years of service to the college.

Edens attended the University of North Carolina, earning a Bachelor of Arts degree in English, with a minor in African-American studies. She is also a graduate of UNC’s Kenan-Flagler Business School’s Business Essentials program.

Rachel Edens

“I look forward to the opportunity to continue to grow the programs associated with the Center of Civic Advancement,” said Edens. “These programs are essential to the uniqueness of Tusculum College and are part of the overall dedication that Tusculum College has to instilling the value of service in its students.”

Edens relocated to Greeneville to accept an AmeriCorps VISTA position with the Center for Civic Advancement in May of 2010.  As a VISTA volunteer, she redeveloped a mentoring initiative between Tusculum’s Bonner Leader Program and Greeneville Middle School, fostered new community partnerships, increased the capacity of service-learning activities and wrote and was awarded a grant by United Healthcare to establish new programming to reduce childhood obesity.

One result of this grant funding was the establishment of a community garden at the Greeneville/Greene County Boys and Girls Club.

“It is great to have Rachel join us permanently, and I’m certain she will be inspiring to students, staff and faculty who participate in the various service projects and programs of the CCA,” said Dr. Melinda Dukes, associate vice president for academic affairs.

The Center for Civic Advancement is dedicated to effecting positive change by promoting social responsibility, social justice and equity through civic engagement and service learning partnerships involving students, campus and the community. The CCA promotes service-learning on Tusculum’s campuses by connecting students to volunteer opportunities in the local area. The Center also provides faculty with resources to incorporate course-related service projects into their classes.

For more information on the Center for Civic Advancement and its programs, contact Edens at (423) 636-7327.

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Tusculum College names Dr. Melinda Dukes interim vice president of academic affairs

Posted on 14 July 2011 by srichey@tusculum.edu

Dr. Melinda Dukes has been named interim vice president of academic affairs at Tusculum College, officials announced today.

She will begin her new duties at Tusculum College on August 6.

Dr. Dukes previously served as professor of psychology and associate vice president for academic affairs and has taught at Tusculum since 1989. She was one of the professors involved in the development and implementation of the focused calendar and commons curriculum that is part of the uniqueness of the Tusculum experience today.

“Dr. Dukes has served Tusculum College with distinction for many years, and I have complete confidence in her ability to lead the academic side of the institution as we consider permanent leadership in this critical position,” said Dr. Nancy B. Moody, president of Tusculum College.

Dr. Melinda Dukes

Dr. Dukes is an administrator and a long-time faculty member, and she has a variety of interests including community-based research, college student persistence and social/civic engagement. She has recently presented a paper on student persistence at the Southeastern Psychological Association annual conference and organized an undergraduate research thread for the Appalachian College Association’s Summit conference.

“Much of what I have been able to achieve at Tusculum is attributed to the fine faculty and staff members with whom I work.  I appreciate the opportunity to work with faculty, staff and students, as this allows me to learn and grow in service to Tusculum and her students,” said Dr. Dukes.

In her new role, Dr. Dukes will be responsible for facilitating academic affairs strategic planning goals and providing leadership as new academic programs are implemented.

“Tusculum College is in a time of significant academic growth, and I look forward to being a part of the team as we explore new and exciting opportunities for students and the community,” said Dukes.

During her time at Tusculum she has had a tremendous impact on both academic programs and administrative operations. She has led efforts to align the experiential education units at the college, including Career Development, the Center for Civic Advancement and the institution’s Quality Enhancement Plan focused on Problem-solving with Reflective Judgment.

She led the Strategic Planning Committee for Block Plan Enhancement and led the Information Services strategic visioning process. Over the past few years, Dr. Dukes has succeeded in increasing enrollment and institutional revenue at the college through the reformulation of its summer school programs.

She has led the development and implementation of new academic programs and was instrumental in the recent success of Tusculum College in achieving reaffirmation of accreditation from the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools-Commission on Colleges (SACS-COC). Dr. Dukes has also been a SACS-COC on-site peer evaluator.

Dr. Dukes has served as a member of the President’s Cabinet at Tusculum College since 2006. She previously served as interim provost and academic vice president in 2006. She is a program committee member and a peer reviewer for the Southeastern Psychological Association Annual Conference.

She received the Tusculum College National Alumni Recognition Award in 2006 and the Teaching Excellence and Campus Leadership Award in 2001. She also received the Women of Achievement Award in 1983 from the University of Tennessee.

Dr. Dukes has a bachelor’s degree in education from Clemson University and earned her master’s degree and doctorate, both in psychology, from the University of Tennessee. In addition, she has completed the Higher Education Resource Services Certificate Class at the Bryn Mawr Summer Institute in 2008 as a Mellon Scholarship Recipient for continuing education in higher education leadership and administration.

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Mary Sonnerheadshoebt

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Tusculum College’s Mary Sonner named Treasurer of State Association

Posted on 13 July 2011 by srichey@tusculum.edu

Mary Sonner, director of personnel services at Tusculum College, was recently named treasurer of the Tennessee College and University Personnel Association (CUPA). Her term began July 1, and she will serve until June 30, 2012.

“Being elected onto the Board of Directors will provide me with great leadership experience,” she said. Her job as treasurer will be to present to the Board of Directors the chapter’s annual budget and periodically report on the chapter’s fiscal status.

Mary Sonner

She will recommend to the Board of Directors all fiscal policies and operating procedures. Sonner came to Tusculum College in 2005, and has been a member of CUPA since July 2006. She has been involved in Human Resources for 20 years in both the profit and nonprofit aspects of the field.

CUPA’s mission is to “provide dynamic leadership to the higher education human resources profession and the higher education community by delivering essential knowledge, resources and connections that enhance individual and institutional capacity and effectiveness.”

According to Sonner, participation in the organization benefits her not only professionally, but also directly benefits Tusculum College.

“I think it benefits me personally in giving an overview and insight on how colleges and universities compare to a corporate environment, and it benefits Tusculum College because it keeps us up-to-date on latest trends with higher education. This gives us a comparison base with other colleges and institutions of higher education.”

It is very important to stay networked within the human resource community on both legal and other trends, said Sonner. “Being involved on the Board of Directors gives me better insight. You just know more of what is going on in a more specialized way. It brings you more up-to-date on the current issues within the college and among other colleges.”

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