Category Archives: TnCIS

Second Pellissippi State student receives prestigious study abroad scholarship

Pellissippi State student Alex Huezo.

Pellissippi State Community College student Alex Huezo has joined fellow student Casey Sullivan as a recent recipient of the prestigious Benjamin A. Gilman International Scholarship.

Huezo, who has attended Pellissippi State for a year, returned in June from a summer study abroad program during which he focused on biology in the Galápagos Islands and Ecuador. The travel opportunity was hosted by the Tennessee Consortium for International Studies, which resides on the Hardin Valley Campus.

The Pellissippi State students were two of only about 500 nationwide who were named recipients of the highly competitive scholarship this year.

Huezo chose the Galápagos trip from among 18 destinations specifically because of the General Biology I course offered for credit as part of the experience. Huezo plans to study nursing, and he recognized that the opportunity to take the class in a setting renowned for its biodiversity was a unique chance to learn biology principles.

The Galápagos Islands, located in South America off the west coast of Ecuador in the Pacific, helped inspire Charles Darwin and his theories of evolution in the 1830s.

“We saw in ‘real life’ the things we would have only read about in textbooks,” said Huezo. “In our lab work, we were able to observe finches, tortoises and other wildlife firsthand, and then we presented our reports from the analyses that we did while we were on the island.”

Pellissippi State student Alex Huezo, pictured with peers during a summer study abroad to the Galápagos Islands and Ecuador. The trip was offered through the Tennessee Consortium for International Studies, located at the college.

Now in its 10th year, the Gilman Scholarship Program has helped approximately 10,000 students from all 50 states, Washington, D.C., and Puerto Rico who might not otherwise be able to study abroad because of financial constraints. The program is sponsored by the Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs of the U.S. Department of State and administered by the Institute of International Education. It is known for its rigorous application standards.

Although he was aware at the outset that the Gilman Scholarship was highly competitive, Huezo nonetheless felt positive about his chances for success when he submitted his application. He credits not only his essay and proposed project but also his sheer determination to study abroad with his selection as one of this year’s scholars.

“At the end of my essay, I made it clear that I would find some way to pay for studying abroad this summer,” said Huezo. “I explained that I would appreciate any assistance, but I was determined to go even if I wasn’t selected for the scholarship.

“And now that I’ve had this experience, I definitely want to study abroad again next summer. I’d like to go to Iceland. It’s supposed to be a challenging program, but I’m ready.”

Huezo is one of more than 450 Tennessee students, faculty and administrators who participated in this summer’s TnCIS study abroad programs. TnCIS coordinates the opportunities as part of its mission of boosting international experience and culture in higher education across the state. A wide variety of study areas were offered this year, in locales ranging from Brazil and China to the Czech Republic and Ghana.

For additional information about TnCIS, including 2013 study abroad options, visit www.tncis.org or call (865) 539-7280. For more about Pellissippi State, visit www.pstcc.edu or call (865) 694-6400.

Pellissippi State hosts exhibit featuring African-American artist Harold Winslow

He lived on the roof of a five-story apartment building in Mexico, and his room was so small that it contained little more than a bed, some canvases and his painting tools. It was from there, though, that African-American artist Harold Winslow created more than 1,300 pieces, securing a place in art history as a prolific chronicler of Mexican culture.

A collection of 50 of Winslow’s works will be shown at a special traveling art exhibit hosted by Pellissippi State Community College and the Tennessee Consortium for International Studies. The works have been on tour since August 2011 at selected Kentucky and Tennessee colleges and universities.

Slated for display at Pellissippi State Sept. 19-Oct. 3, “Una Visión de la Mexicanidad”—“Mexicanidad” refers to the Mexican national identity and culture—offers a record of one artist’s experience in two cultures. Winslow, who was born in 1918 in Dayton, Ohio, moved to Mexico in 1940 in the hopes of escaping racism. He remained there until his death in 2001, at the age of 83.

“As a painter, Winslow expressed the enduring spirit of Mexican culture and the detailed harmony of human anatomy,” said Tracey Bradley, executive director of the consortium. “This unique perspective gives us all an opportunity to experience Mexico through his vision.”

The creative community in Mexico embraced Winslow, and he studied under such notable artists as painters Diego Rivera and José Clemente Orozco, watercolorist Pastor Velásquez, and muralist Alfredo Zalce. Winslow’s work includes paintings, murals and illustrations.

In the early 1940s, the artist also drew more than 2,000 illustrations for the “Treaty of Human Anatomy,” a textbook still in use at the Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México, one of the most recognized academic institutions in Latin America.

“Una Visión de la Mexicanidad” marks the second time this summer that Pellissippi State and TnCIS have joined with the Ministry of Culture of Michoacán to bring an international art exhibit to East Tennessee. The three organizations teamed in August to bring “Masks of Michoacán” from Mexico to Knoxville for a 17-day showing.

TnCIS, whose headquarters are at Pellissippi State, and the Ministry of Culture of Michoacán, a Mexican state, are sponsoring the exhibit. TnCIS is dedicated to making international education and cultural understanding a central goal of higher education in Tennessee. The consortium offers study abroad opportunities to college students throughout the state.

The display of Winslow’s art is one of the events that make up Pellissippi State’s new arts series, “The Arts at Pellissippi State.” The series brings to the community cultural activities ranging from music and theatre to international celebrations, lectures, and the fine arts.

The exhibit is on display Monday-Friday, 9 a.m.-4 p.m. The showing is in the gallery of the Bagwell Center for Media and Art on the Hardin Valley Campus. It is free and open to the public. Group tours from schools, art classes and artist groups are welcome and may be arranged with advance notice.

To learn more or schedule a group tour, contact Linnette Legg at (865) 539-7064 or llegg@pstcc.edu. To request accommodations for a disability, contact the executive director of Human Resources at (865) 694-6607 or humanresources@pstcc.edu.

Additional information about TnCIS is available at www.tncis.org. For more about Pellissippi State, call (865) 694-6400 or visit www.pstcc.edu.

Pellissippi State, TnCIS host Mexican art exhibit

Pellissippi State Community College and the Tennessee Consortium for International Studies will host a special traveling art exhibit from Mexico Aug. 27-Sept. 12. With the presentation of “Masks of Michoacán,” this will be the fourth year the college and TnCIS have worked with the Ministry of Culture of Michoacán to bring an international art exhibit to East Tennessee.

TnCIS, whose headquarters are at Pellissippi State, and the Ministry of Culture of Michoacán, a Mexican state, are sponsoring the exhibit. TnCIS is dedicated to making international education and cultural understanding a central goal of higher education in Tennessee. The consortium offers study abroad opportunities to college students throughout the state.

The Michoacán collection, which includes 40 wooden masks from the Mask Museum in the Centro Cultural Antiguo Colegio Jesuita in Pátzcuaro, brings to life the attitudes and values of those whose culture the pieces represent. According to early chroniclers and historians, Mesoamerican cultures used masks in rituals and indigenous ceremonies. The masks were made in a variety of shapes, sizes, and colors and were used in secular and religious celebrations, dances, and pantomimes.

The exhibit is free and open to the public. Group tours from schools, art classes or artist groups are welcome and may be arranged with advance notice. An opening reception, which is free and open to the public, is scheduled for Monday, Aug. 27, at 3:15 p.m. in Pellissippi State’s Bagwell Center for Media and Art lobby.

“Masks of Michoacán” is one of the events that make up Pellissippi State’s new arts series, “The Arts at Pellissippi State.” The series brings to the community cultural activities ranging from music and theatre to international celebrations, lectures and the fine arts.

Exhibit hours are Monday-Friday, 9 a.m.-4 p.m. The showing is in the Bagwell Center gallery at the Hardin Valley Campus.

For additional information or to schedule a group tour, contact Linnette Legg at (865) 539-7064 or llegg@pstcc.edu. To request accommodations for a disability, contact the executive director of Human Resources at (865) 694-6607 or humanresources@pstcc.edu.

Additional information about TnCIS is available at www.tncis.org. For more about Pellissippi State, visit www.pstcc.edu or call (865) 694-6400.

Chinese delegates to visit Pellissippi State

Pellissippi State Community College hosts a delegation from China during the week of Feb. 20, during which the college plans to share its best practices in “Building a Green Campus.”

The visitors will be in the U.S. to research the coordination and cooperation of educational institutions, companies and associations. Pellissippi State was selected as a host site by the Community Colleges for International Development, Inc., an association for global education based in Cedar Rapids, Iowa.

The team of five delegates represents Rizhao Polytechnic, a comprehensive vocational and technical college in China’s Shandong province. The guests are Feng Xinguang, the college’s president; Li Jiangang, assistant president; Yang Baoguo, director, higher education research center; Mao Huaidong, vice director, general affairs office; and Li Hongye, director, internal affairs.

Upon their arrival in East Tennessee on Feb. 18, the delegates will have the weekend to explore the community. On Feb. 20, they will begin their week of research activities with tours of the Pellissippi Campus and Blount County Campus.

Pellissippi State was awarded a 2010 Governor’s Environmental Stewardship, in part thanks to the building and design of the Blount County Campus. Green features include a parking plan that incorporates reserved spaces near the building for alternative fuel vehicles, as well as charging stations for electric cars. The green design plan also includes bike racks and access to a shower for bicyclists.

“Pellissippi State is honored and excited to be a part of this vital cultural exchange,” said Anthony Wise, Pellissippi State president. “Our green initiatives are definitely collaborative in nature, and we are pleased to share our experiences with our counterparts from Rizhao Polytechnic.

“Their visit also complements our Confucius Classroom. We’re looking forward to being able to engage in personal dialogue with educators from China.”

Pellissippi State boasts a Confucius Classroom thanks to the school’s status as the 2010 recipient of a prestigious grant from the Confucius Institute at the University of Memphis.

Pellissippi State now offers three Chinese language classes and one Chinese culture course. By fall 2012, a fourth-level language course will be offered. That means students pursuing an Associate of Arts degree at Pellissippi State may now satisfy their foreign language requirement with Mandarin Chinese.

Assisting in the coordination of delegate activities is the Tennessee Consortium for International Studies. TnCIS, whose headquarters are at Pellissippi State, is devoted to making international education and cultural understanding a central goal of higher education in Tennessee.

For additional information about Pellissippi State, visit www.pstcc.edu or call (865) 694-6400.