Tusculum, Food City sign corporate sponsorship agreement, bringing education benefits and collaboration opportunities

GREENEVILLETusculum University and Food City, one of the region’s largest employers, have signed a corporate sponsorship agreement that will enable the company’s associates and their family members to receive tuition discounts for any of the higher education institution’s academic programs.

Misty Kern, left, and Elizabeth Yanez, right, join Dr. Scott Hummel for the signing ceremony.

Misty Kern, Food City’s director of training, and Elizabeth Yanez, the company’s corporate recruiter, joined Dr. Scott Hummel, Tusculum’s president, for a signing ceremony on campus Monday, July 24. By signing this agreement, Food City becomes the latest organization to turn to the university for assistance with workforce development.

“Food City is an outstanding organization that has grown exponentially and supported the region impressively throughout its history,” Dr. Hummel said. “We are thrilled to help Food City associates and their families achieve their academic goals as they begin their careers or seek advancement within the company. Our expert professors and active and experiential education will enhance their knowledge and skills, and our students, faculty, and staff will benefit from opportunities to collaborate on multiple levels with the company.”

In addition to associates receiving tuition discounts, Food City will be eligible for corporate and organizational analysis from Master of Business Administration students completing the Comprehensive Business Project course and corporate training through the Master of Arts in Organizational Training and Performance Management capstone project. Kern said Tusculum students might be able to receive jobs and internships from Food City.

“We are excited to offer the benefit to our associates,” Kern said. “Our dedicated associates are what makes us successful, and this is another way we can offer appreciation. In addition to providing financial assistance, I see this providing future growth opportunities to our current and new associates. Many people only see us as a grocery store. We are that and more. It takes a lot of different skill sets to maintain our operations. We have many opportunities available in our retail operations, corporate support center and distribution center.”

Left to right, Misty Kern, Dr. Scott Hummel and Elizabeth Yanez sign the corporate sponsorship agreement.

Food City, which is based in Abingdon, Virginia, employs over 18,500 associates in 151 retail locations throughout Tennessee, Virginia, Kentucky, Georgia, and Alabama. Kern said Food City is promoting the sponsorship through its internal company news platform. The organization has also sent printed materials to each of its retail locations and will have signage at high-traffic areas for associates as well as in the company’s corporate support center and distribution center.

“Tusculum is committed to civic engagement and ensuring employees in our region have the tools to succeed in their chosen profession,” said Dr. Jacob Fait, vice president of enrollment management and financial aid. “We are grateful for the trust Food City has placed in us and look forward to seeing the synergistic effect this sponsorship agreement has on the university, the company and our region. By working together, all of us will continue to grow.”

Companies that are interested in a corporate sponsorship agreement with Tusculum can contact J’Quen Johnson, assistant director of adult and online studies recruitment, at 423-636-7386 or jjohnson@tusculum.edu. Further information about the university is available at www.tusculum.edu.