Category Archives: Students

Pellissippi State leads region in manufacturing education and training

Last year, Pellissippi State Community College enhanced its reputation as a leader in manufacturing education, marked the graduation of its first Nursing class, and achieved full state approval for its Nursing program. Nursing is offered at the Blount County Campus in Friendsville and the Magnolia Avenue Campus in Knoxville.

This year, the college is poised to build on its academic programs, as well as on its student participation in study abroad—already the highest of any U.S. community college.

Supporting students in completing college and increasing access to and placing graduates in good jobs serve as key priorities in 2013, said L. Anthony Wise Jr., Pellissippi State president.

“We continue to focus on helping students complete their studies in both transfer programs and career/technical fields that lead to outstanding transfer opportunities and excellent jobs,” Wise said.

Pellissippi State also is reviewing its distance education program to find ways to provide additional pathways to degree completion.

“We’re going to change the way we use distance education—and this will certainly affect Blount County—to help students at our site campuses complete career and transfer degrees on those campuses,” Wise said.

Manufacturing education and training

At the state-of-the-art Manufacturing Tech Lab, the Blount County Campus has experienced an uptick in apprenticeship training through the college’s Business and Community Services Division and Engineering Technology degree program. For example, Cherokee Millwright revived its apprenticeship program with the consultation and expertise of BCS. BCS and Engineering Technology also developed curricula and training for Y-12 machinist apprentices at the Hardin Valley Campus.

This past year, the college played a key role in creating a national curriculum for the Automotive Manufacturing Technical Education Collaborative. AMTEC is a collaboration of colleges and industry to better prepare skilled technicians and manufacturing engineers for work in auto manufacturing and technology. The curriculum contribution helped Pellissippi State land two federal grants to fund manufacturing education, training and workforce development in East Tennessee.

“These types of advanced manufacturing programs, they really feed into what seems to be a growth in manufacturing in the local economy,” Wise said. “In terms of our career programs, that’s exactly where we need to be.”

The first grant came through the U.S. Department of Labor in September. The Labor Department awarded $15 million to an educational consortium that included Pellissippi State. The grant provides a minimum of $760,000 to each consortium member during a three-year period.

The award funds manufacturing job training to fill a shortage of skilled workers locally. The goal of the grant meets a long-term ambition, one that dovetails with Pellissippi State’s mission: to help transform manufacturing education.

The funding will boost instructional capacity, pay for equipment and technical support, and improve online delivery of the college’s Engineering Technology classes.

A few weeks after the Labor Department grant was announced, Pellissippi State learned it was the recipient of a second federal grant for manufacturing education.

The college plays a key role in the Advanced Manufacturing and Prototype Center of East Tennessee (AMP!), one of 10 public-private partnerships to receive a total of $20 million to revitalize U.S. manufacturing and create jobs. Pellissippi State’s partners on the grant include Oak Ridge National Laboratory, the University of Tennessee’s Center for Industrial Services and Tech 20/20, the lead grant applicant.

The regional consortium’s proposal was selected through a federal multi-agency competition called the Advanced Manufacturing Jobs and Innovation Accelerator Challenge.

The grant enables Pellissippi State to offer a certificate in Additive Manufacturing and update existing curricula. It funds more than $250,000 in scholarships for students in Advanced Manufacturing courses.

Additive manufacturing describes the technologies that build 3D objects by adding layer-upon-layer of material, whether the material is plastic, metal or concrete. Using 3D printers, companies can create prototypes quickly, with less waste and cost than traditional methods. In addition, additive manufacturing is being used more and more to make finished products.

The certificate will be offered through BCS and Engineering Technology.

International Education

Study abroad by American students has more than tripled over the past two decades. During the 2010-11 academic year, 174 Pellissippi State students studied abroad, making the college the top two-year school in the U.S. in terms of the number of study abroad students.

The numbers come from the most recent Open Doors Report, published annually by the Institute of International Education in partnership with the U.S. Department of State’s Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs.

A key factor in Pellissippi State’s study abroad success is its robust scholarship program. Funded through the international education fee, study abroad scholarships at Pellissippi State total more than $300,000 each year.

“Our study abroad programs are designed to help students earn credits towards degrees and to develop a broader understanding of the world in which they study, live, and work,” said Wise.

“Scholarship support allows our students to travel to places they might never have imagined. Very often they come back better students and citizens and with a much better sense of who they are and what they want to do.”

Pellissippi State hosts competition for young inventors

Attention, science teachers: Tell your students that Saturday, Feb. 23, is the big day.

Pellissippi State Community College is hosting the second annual Inventors’ Fair for middle, high school and, for the first time ever, college students. The event is 9 a.m.-2 p.m. in the Goins Building College Center on the Hardin Valley Campus.

The fair is hosted by the Pellissippi State Science Club. It’s sure to be fun and educational for students. Parents are also invited to attend.

“There are many students around our communities who have great ideas that may otherwise go unrecognized,” said Jerry Burns, who teaches chemistry at the college and is the club sponsor. “We want to reward innovation.”

Students may bring projects they’ve created for school science fairs and enter them in the Pellissippi State competition. Three winners in the middle-school bracket and three in the high-school level will be selected. Winners receive cash prizes of $10, $20 and $30.

Area college students are invited to enter their own inventions in the brand-new college-age category. Prizes will be awarded in that category, too.

Each entrant receives feedback from Pellissippi State science students and faculty members. That feedback is especially valuable for students who decide to enter their projects in the April 1-4 Southern Appalachian Science and Engineering Fair at the University of Tennessee. Three students from each bracket will be awarded the $10 entrance fee to compete in the SASEF.

In addition to competing on the 23rd, students will have the chance to enjoy some science fun, as Pellissippi State Science Club members assist them with entertaining experiments and demonstrations.

“Last year the students had such a great time making their own ice cream and watching all the experiments,” said Lee Beckner, Science Club president. “I think they took a new appreciation of science away with them, and I hope that it stays with them and they become the great minds of our future.”

For more information on the Inventors’ Fair, call (865) 694-6400 or email Burns at or beckner at

To request accommodations for a disability, contact the executive director of Human Resources at (865) 694-6607 or Requests should be made at least two weeks in advance.

Pellissippi State offers free workshop for applying for financial aid

The process of applying for financial aid can seem overwhelming for both students and parents. Take it off your to-do list by attending College Goal Sunday, a free workshop at Pellissippi State Community College.

The event is at noon this coming Sunday, Jan. 27, in the Educational Resources Center, Room 327, on the Hardin Valley Campus. It is sponsored by the Tennessee Student Assistance Corporation and Tennessee Higher Education Commission.

Pellissippi State hosts College Goal Sunday to help current and potential students and their families navigate the steps necessary to apply for financial aid for higher education. The FAFSA, or Free Application for Federal Student Aid, is the documentation required to be considered for financial aid, including grants, scholarships and loans. Knowing how to complete the FAFSA properly is crucial, and financial aid professionals will be on hand to help students successfully complete and submit the documents.

Those who are unsure whether they’ll need financial aid are encouraged to attend the event as well, since attending will ensure that critical FAFSA deadlines have been met if applicants decide they need assistance later in the year. Completing the FAFSA establishes no obligation to attend college.

To register for College Goal Sunday, fill out and submit the online Events Registration form at Participants should bring specific financial documents to the session. The list of what to bring is available online at The four-hour workshop begins promptly at noon. Attendees are encouraged to arrive early.

For additional information, call (800) 342-1663 or visit To contact Pellissippi State directly, call (865) 694-6400.

To request accommodations for a disability, contact the executive director of Human Resources and Affirmative Action at (865) 694-6607 or

Pellissippi State’s Veterans Support Committee hosts Wounded Warrior staff

Many East Tennesseans know Pellissippi State Community College’s reputation for supporting and enrolling one of the largest student-veteran populations in the state. It’s a reputation that, in fact, has made its way to troops serving in Iraq and Afghanistan.

They also may know the Wounded Warrior Project, respected for its role in helping injured service members recover from the trauma of war.

Now WWP and Pellissippi State are looking for ways to assist one another in helping veterans as they transition from combat zone to classroom to employment.

“Collaborating with WWP would give our students access to and awareness of a network of support resources they may need,” said Ron Bridges, Faculty Senate president. “This can only help their success as students. It will also give all of our students an opportunity to get involved in supporting a great organization and engaging in community actions.”

Pellissippi State’s Veterans Support Committee hosted WWP staff members at the Hardin Valley Campus on Dec. 12. The committee includes representatives from the college’s administration, faculty and staff.

The discussion covered several areas of common interest and mutual concern, including transitioning to the classroom, employment, academic preparedness and community engagement.

Tiffany Daugherty and Kayla Avery, staff members at WWP’s new regional office in Nashville, came to campus for the meeting. The new WWP office opened in October, and its staff has spent a lot of time traveling the state, reaching out to organizations that serve veterans.

“Our main focus is to let the veterans know that we are here,” said Daugherty. WWP offers more than 18 programs and services to veterans and their families. To learn more, visit

To find out more about the resources available to veterans through Pellissippi State, go to or call (865) 694-6400.

Pellissippi State: first community college in state to launch AT&T mobile app

Pellissippi State Community College has become the first community college in Tennessee to offer accessibility to important and timely college information via a mobile app powered by AT&T. The application is available for free download on Android, Apple and Blackberry devices.

The new feature allows Pellissippi State students to access their class schedules, final grades, selected online classes, the mobile library site and additional tools. Members of the community can access the college’s academic and event calendars, YouTube video feed, current school news, campus maps and phone directory.

Adding an application that is accessible via cell phones, mobile tablets and mobile personal digital assistants gives current and potential students and community members the opportunity to connect to the most up-to-date information in whatever way is most convenient for them.

According to a forecast by Cisco, a worldwide networking leader, the number of mobile-connected devices was expected to outstrip the world’s population count by the end of 2012.

“We are excited to deliver the latest in accessibility to our students, faculty, staff and community members,” said L. Anthony Wise Jr., president of Pellissippi State. “Mobile apps are in high demand because they provide information readily and with ease of use.

“Pellissippi State has been a leader in technology for more than 35 years, and we’re pleased to remain at the forefront of technological delivery.”

To access the free Pellissippi State mobile app, log in to your Apple, Android or Blackberry store or contact your service provider. The college’s mobile device support site can be accessed at

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

Students named to Pellissippi State chapter of international honor society

More than 175 students were inducted into Pellissippi State Community College’s chapter of Phi Theta Kappa International Honor Society for fall semester.

The new additions to Alpha Theta Xi bring the number of PTK members who attended Pellissippi State in the fall to 405.

PTK is the academic honor society for two-year colleges. In order to be eligible for membership, a student must have completed a minimum of 12 semester hours, be pursuing a degree and have a cumulative grade point average of 3.5 or better.

The fall inductees are as follows: Sara Adams, Taylor Albert, Nadia Aldahiri, Christopher Alexander, Allen Burdette, David (Trey) Alley, Timothy Amos, Michael Anderson, Anna Astorga, Daniel Atkins, Alexandria Atkins, Christine Austin, Lydia Badgett, Victoria Baker, Maggie Barta, Megan Beal, Amy Beam, Patrick Bledsoe, Dominique Blue, Caleb Bost, Allison Bradley, Brandy Brogdon, Katherine Burns, Hannah Burroughs, Emily Butters, Mandee Carroll, Marilyn Case, Margaret Casteel, Jonathan Chase, Sarah Christopher, Amber Coffey, Cristen Colquitt, Crystal Cooper, Kevin Coughlin, Sam Dalili, Nicola Dalili, Charles Deaderick, Brittney Dingess, Chrystine Dodd, Betty Edwards, Christopher Elliott, Ann Everett, Chad Everett, Amanda Fancher, Alexandra Fee, Caroline Fine, Jesse Ford, Miranda Fortner, Shanon Friauf, Lori Fuller, Priscilla Furlong, Nathan Garner, Jean Gee, Elizabeth Handlon, Janet Hastings, Lacy Hayes, Robert Henry, William Hill, Linda Hinkle, Katelin Hodges, Rachel Holden, Davis Hu, Amanda Huber, Virginia Hughes, Muhammad Iqbal, Cristy Janik, Christine Jensen, Kerry Jett, Jesse Johnson, Denis Johnson, Christa Jones, Samantha Jones, Jonathan Jones, Roshni Joseph-Biles, Nicholas Kilano, Anna Land, Zachary Lange, Morgan Lay, Nhu Le, Hope Ledger, Rachel Leffew, Tina Lett, Lisa Lisle, Peter Lomax, Michael Maddela, Sima Maleki, Caleb Mangum, Diana Mannis, Michaela Maples, Jeffrey Mason, Andrea McCune, Michaella McGill, Scott McGugin, Alexandra Miller, Lori Monroe, Pamela Moses, Sharita Murphy, John Music, Michael Myers, Gladys Nance, Michael Nance, William Norris, Whitney Oslonian, Jennifer Over, Hannah Overton, Deborah Palmer, Kayla Palmer, Hannah Parkman, Janice Paul, Erica Peters, Shannon Poelstra, Rachel Poland, Munira Punjvani, Spencer Raby, Joy Raby, Amanda Radford, Niloo Ranjan, Ashley Rasar, Daryl Ray, Jeffery Renfro, Sarah Rexrode, Taylor Ripley, Jason Roberts, Tanya Robertson, Lauren Robinson, Alisha Robson, Rachel Rollick, Daphne Rollins, Josh Roop, Arica Rowan, Alexandra Rozanski, Amber Ryan, Olive Sebatembo, Jane Sellers, John Shurina, Chuck Slagle, Caleb Smith, Dwight Smith, Kristin Smith, Bobby Snodderly, Wendy Stafford, Erin Stansberry, Wesley Steese, Jeff Steinheiner, Lee Stephens, Silvia Sweitzer, Dawn Taft, Jennifer Talley, Chelsea Tanner, Matthew Taylor, Chelsea Temple, Justin Thiele, Zachary Thomas, Rachel Thompson, Abbey Towe, Sarah Tuggle, Rachael Turner, Travis Vickery, Tina Vinsant, Logan Wade, Heather Walker, Sydney Warneke, Rachel Weatherly, BriAnna Webb, Wojciech Wiktor, Jennifer Williams, Sarah Williams, Shane Wilson, Jared Wilson, Zanetta Wilson, Mary Wilson, Scottie Wood, Lauren Wooten, Jennifer Worthington, Angelique Zimcosky and Stacey Zupka.

Pellissippi State’s knoxAchieves students meet scholarship requirements by volunteering with Mobile Meals

Getting fruit into the hands of some of the people who need it most—shut-ins served by Mobile Meals—made the holidays more meaningful for some Pellissippi State Community College students.

The first-ever “Fruitful Endeavor” took place at Thanksgiving at Pellissippi State’s Magnolia Avenue Campus, and Moira Connelly, an English faculty member and the site’s Service-Learning coordinator, says the campus plans to make it an annual event. The Service-Learning program broadens students’ education by pairing community service with classroom learning.

Students, faculty, and staff supported Mobile Meals by donating large bags of fruit, and about 30 students volunteered during a three-hour block, sorting the fruit into 150 individual bags and making Thanksgiving cards, Connelly says.

The goal for Pellissippi State was threefold: to provide the fruit, to emphasize volunteer work and to give students in the knoxAchieves program an opportunity to fulfill their community service requirement. The program, which is part of tnAchieves (, offers public high school graduates up to $3,000 per year for community college tuition in exchange for eight hours of volunteering.

“You really did make a difference this year,” Jennifer Oakes, volunteer coordinator for Mobile Meals, told the college. “In the past, a large donation of fruit was made by a church, but this year they were not able to contribute, thus any amount of fruit we received was important. We would have been very short without your contribution.”

Mobile Meals is a program of the Knoxville-Knox County Community Action
 Committee’s Office on Aging.

To learn more about Pellissippi State, go to or call (865) 694-6400. For more information about community service at the college, contact Annie Gray, Pellissippi State faculty member and coordinator of the Service-Learning program, at or (865) 694-6492.

Pellissippi State students earn paralegal scholarships


Two Pellissippi State Community College students have been named winners of scholarships that attracted applicants from across the state.

Daniel Ostrom, in his second year of Paralegal Studies, was awarded an $800 scholarship from the Smoky Mountain Paralegal Association. To be eligible for the SMPA funds, students must be enrolled full time in a sustaining member educational institution or be an SMPA student member. They also must have completed 6 credit hours in their major and be in good academic standing.

Kelli Canan, in her first semester, was awarded a $500 scholarship from the Tennessee Paralegal Association. The TPA scholarship is based on financial need, scholastic ability, leadership and extracurricular activities.

“I’m very proud of these students,” said Arlene Cleveland, a professor and the coordinator of the Paralegal Studies program.

“Danny is an outstanding student. This is Kelli’s first semester, and she’s showing signs of being an excellent student,” said Cleveland. “I expect both of them to make contributions to the legal profession.

“These scholarships are available to paralegal students across the state. It’s amazing that two of our students were chosen by two different organizations.”

Paralegal Studies is a two-year program that prepares graduates to work in a law office under the direct supervision of an attorney, doing legal work such as drafting legal documents, organizing files, conducting legal research and investigations, and managing the office.

Paralegal Studies enrolled 150 students fall 2012 semester. The program is approved by the American Bar Association and culminates in an Associate of Applied Science degree.

For more information about Paralegal Studies and Pellissippi State, call (865) 694-6400 or visit

Pellissippi State presented $10,000 BP Fueling Communities donation by KenJo Markets for students with disabilities

From left to right are L. Anthony Wise Jr., Pellissippi State president; Charles W. “Wes” Carruthers Jr., KenJo Markets president; Peggy Wilson, vice president of College Advancement, Pellissippi State, and executive director, Pellissippi State Foundation; and Michele DeFelice, Services for Students With Disabilities coordinator, Pellissippi State.

Pellissippi State Community College has received a $10,000 BP Fueling Communities grant from KenJo Markets in support of the college’s students with disabilities.

KenJo Markets President Charles W. “Wes” Carruthers Jr. nominated the college for the grant, and he presented the check to the Pellissippi State Foundation at the Hardin Valley Campus. As a BP branded marketer, KenJo services BP stations throughout East Tennessee.

Pellissippi State began offering classes at the Strawberry Plains Campus, formerly the Philips Consumer Electronics East Tennessee headquarters, fall 2012. The donation from BP and KenJo Markets will be used at the college’s campuses for new equipment and technology to better serve students with disabilities. The institution has five campuses: Hardin Valley, Magnolia Avenue, Division Street, Blount County and Strawberry Plains.

The BP Fueling Communities funds will go toward purchase of such equipment as a high-speed color scanner to scan textbooks and other classroom items. It also will fund laptop computers to provide real-time transcription services for students who are deaf or hard of hearing and state-of-the-art dynamic FM systems to enhance speech recognition for students who are hard of hearing.

“I am proud to present this donation on behalf of KenJo Markets and BP,” said Carruthers. “This new equipment and technology will assist students with disabilities in the classroom and underscores a critical mission at Pellissippi State, which is access to education.”

As a member of the Pellissippi State Foundation’s Board of Trustees as well as an alumnus and a longtime supporter, Carruthers understands firsthand the mission of the college.

To learn how you can support Pellissippi State and its students, visit the Foundation at or call (865) 694-6400.

Pellissippi State awards three Gnosis student club scholarships

L-R, Scottie Wood, recipient; Lindsay Delay, recipient; Delonda Anderson, recipient; Annie Gray, Gnosis co-advisor; and Nathan Bowman, Gnosis president.

Three scholarships totaling $2,500 have been awarded on behalf of the student organization Gnosis by the Pellissippi State Foundation.

The scholarships went to Pellissippi State Community College students Delonda Anderson in English, Lindsay Delay in Paralegal Studies and Scottie Wood in Nursing. All three students have a 4.0 grade point average.

Gnosis, founded in 2009, is a student-led service-learning organization. The club draws its name from the Greek word for the highest form of knowledge, that which comes about only through experience. Gnosis membership includes students as well as faculty members with a love of learning and community service.

“The scholarships are designed for students who do not qualify for other types of financial aid but who still need financial assistance to complete their programs of study, ” said Annie Gray, Gnosis founder, co-advisor and English faculty member. Scholarship applicants submitted essays that outlined their commitment to community service, academic achievements, goals and financial need.

Funds were generated by faculty and community donations and proceeds from club sales at college events. All scholarship support goes through the Pellissippi State Foundation.

Gnosis has sponsored a wide variety of faculty and student lectures, as well as initiated many community service projects. The club has been named Pellissippi State’s Outstanding Student Organization for the past three years.

For more information about Gnosis or the scholarship, contact Annie Gray at (865) 694-6492 or call Pellissippi State at (865) 694-6400.