Category Archives: Students

Pellissippi State ‘2+2’ alumnus named ‘Teacher of the Year’

Charlie ArpCharles Arp, a Pellissippi State Community College alumnus, has been named “Teacher of the Year” for Sweetwater City Schools in Monroe County. He teaches fifth grade at Brown Intermediate School.

Arp graduated through a teacher education partnership between Pellissippi State and Tennessee Technological University in 2012. Graduates from what is called the “2+2” program earn an Associate of Science in Teaching degree from Pellissippi State, then a Bachelor of Science degree in Multidisciplinary Studies and K-6 Teacher Licensure from Tennessee Tech.

Students in 2+2 attend the first two years as Pellissippi State students and the last two years as Tennessee Tech students—but they take all of their classes at Pellissippi State’s Hardin Valley Campus. A.S.T. is a cohort program, meaning the students go through the entire sequence together.

“Charlie was one of those students that you don’t forget,” said Barbara Jenkins, program coordinator of the A.S.T. program. “He knew what he wanted to do—to teach and make a difference with children in the elementary classroom—and he pursued his goal without hesitation.”

Arp says he was surprised and pleased to receive the Teacher of the Year recognition after teaching only three years. The honor is awarded through Little Tennessee Valley Educational Cooperative.

In April, he also earned Oak Ridge Associated Universities’ 2015 Extreme Classroom Makeover. The award comes with a $25,000 grand prize that funds new technology in the classroom.

Arp credits his success to Pellissippi State and Tennessee Tech and the partnership 2+2 program.

“Pellissippi State prepared me for nearly every aspect of teaching,” he said. “My students have had some of the highest possible science TCAP [Tennessee Comprehensive Assessment Program] scores in the state. I would say 75 percent of my teaching toolkit is from things I learned at Pellissippi State.

“The 2+2 program even helped prepare me for the interview for this job [at Brown Intermediate]. The only mistake I made was that I didn’t start the 2+2 program straight out of high school.”

Arp employs a number of distinctive techniques to teach his students, including using the Minecraft video game as a way of teaching mathematics and keeping children moving during math lessons by making use of a class-sized coordinate plane. When teaching reading and English lessons, Arp uses movie trailers based on novels to get his students interested in literature.

For more information about the A.S.T., 2+2 and other programs offered by or in partnership with Pellissippi State, visit www.pstcc.edu or call (865) 694-6400.

Community invited to Pellissippi State’s Student Design Showcase

Pellissippi State Community College graphic design students will display their coursework during the annual Communication Graphics Technology Student Design Showcase.

The free event is 4-8 p.m. Thursday, April 23, and the community is invited. The theme of this year’s showcase is “We’re Cooking Up Something Good.”

The student showcase is like a graduation, celebration and potential job interview all rolled into one. It gives this year’s 19 senior-level participants the opportunity to present their portfolios for viewing and evaluation by invited area design professionals. Each student has his or her own table display, and each makes business cards and resumes available to the attending industry professionals.

The CGT Student Design Showcase takes place in the Bagwell Center for Media and Art on the Hardin Valley Campus, 10915 Hardin Valley Road.

For more information about the showcase, visit www.pstcc.edu or call (865) 694-6400. To request accommodations for a disability, contact the executive director of Human Resources at (865) 694-6607 or humanresources@pstcc.edu.

Pellissippi State: Civil Rights film ‘Say It Loud’ to show at Magnolia Avenue Campus

Rich-ProtestPellissippi State Community College’s Magnolia Avenue Campus hosts a showing of “Say It Loud: Knoxville During the Civil Rights Era,” a documentary chronicling local events that were part of the Civil Rights Movement, Thursday, April 16.

The film runs 2-3:20 p.m. in the Community Room, and the community is invited to the free event.

The event also features a brief presentation by Theotis Robinson Jr., a retired vice president for diversity and equity at the University of Tennessee and a columnist for the Knoxville News Sentinel. Robinson was one of the first African-American students to desegregate the UT campus in 1961. His brief presentation and question-and-answer take place after the documentary.

 “Say It Loud” uses archival footage, recently rediscovered, to study the African-American community in Knoxville and Civil Rights up to the 1970s. It was produced by the Tennessee Archive of Moving Image and Sound, a unit of the Knox County Public Library.

“It’s an unusual documentary that lets these rare images tell the story themselves,” said Bradley Reeves, archivist at TAMIS.

The documentary is being screened as part of the Magnolia Avenue Campus’ American History II class. The campus is located at 1610 E. Magnolia Ave.

For more information, visit www.pstcc.edu or call (865) 329-3100. To request accommodations for a disability, contact the executive director of Human Resources at (865) 694-6607 or humanresources@pstcc.edu.

Pellissippi State: Orientation sessions set for new summer enrollees

All degree-seeking students who have been accepted to attend Pellissippi State Community College for the summer 2015 semester should make plans now to attend a New Student Orientation session.

The sessions are required of all new degree-seeking students, both freshmen and transfer. Reserve a space as soon as possible.

Orientation gives new students the opportunity to meet with Pellissippi State students, faculty, and staff; learn about what they can expect in college and what the college expects of them; pick up strategies for college success; explore degree, major, and transfer options; and discover campus services and resources such as financial aid, tutoring, and computer resources.

New Student Orientation dates and times:

  • Tuesday, May 19, 5-8:30 p.m.
  • Friday, May 22, 9 a.m.-12:30 p.m.

Both sessions are at the Hardin Valley Campus, 10915 Hardin Valley Road.

Pellissippi State encourages parents, spouses and others supportive of the student to attend New Student Orientation. The application deadline for summer semester’s first four-week and full-term sessions is May 18. Classes begin May 26.

To sign up for an orientation session, visit www.pstcc.edu/orientation or call (865) 694-6400. To request accommodations for a disability, contact Disability Services at accommodations@pstcc.edu or (865) 539-7153.

Faculty to read original poetry at Pellissippi State

In honor of National Poetry Month, Pellissippi State Community College is celebrating its own faculty poets.

The college presents a Faculty Poetry Reading at 1 p.m. Friday, April 17, in the Goins Building Auditorium at the Hardin Valley Campus, 10915 Hardin Valley Road.

The free event is open to the community.

The presentation features the poetry of several faculty members, and each poet-professor will read one or two original works. Featured faculty members are Edward Francisco, Patricia Ireland, Nicholas Morgan, Keith Norris, Barbara Anne Pharr, Heather Schroeder and Charles White.

“We want to enable our students in particular to see what talented faculty we have,” said Francisco, professor of English and writer-in-residence at Pellissippi State. “When they’re in the classroom, they might not know the talent of the person who is teaching them.

“Plus, April is Shakespeare’s birthday month. We couldn’t let that month go by without a celebration of language and literature at Pellissippi State.”

For more information about the event, call (865) 694-6638. To learn more about Pellissippi State, visit www.pstcc.edu or call (865) 694-6400.

To request accommodations for a disability, contact the executive director of Human Resources at (865) 694-6607 or humanresources@pstcc.edu.

Family Literacy Night at Pellissippi State open to families of preschoolers

East Tennessee families of preschool students are invited to the free Family Literacy Night at Pellissippi State Community College 6-8 p.m. Tuesday, April 14. This event is held in the Educational Resources Center, room 120, on the Hardin Valley Campus. The college’s Language and Literacy in Early Childhood class is hosting the inaugural event.

The class’ students are planning a number of literacy activities tailored to preschool children and their families. The evening will include four activity stations, each of which is based on an individual book theme, and the event will feature a book walk, door prizes, and other child-friendly activities.

“Our students are responsible for creating and implementing activities for preschoolers and their families, as well as decorating their areas,” said Hope Denny, an instructor in Early Childhood Education. “I’ve had a lot of positive feedback from students so far, and we hope that this will be the start of an annual event.”

Family Literacy Night is supported by the local chapter of the National Association for the Education of Young Children. The event celebrates the national Week of the Young Child, which is sponsored by the NAEYC.

“We wanted our students to be part of this national observance by putting what they’ve learned in class into practice,” said Denny. “Family Literacy Night is a great opportunity for our students to connect both with children and their parents.”

For more information about the event and Pellissippi State, visit www.pstcc.edu or call (865) 694-6400. To request accommodations for a disability, contact the executive director of Human Resources at (865) 694-6607 or humanresources@pstcc.edu.

Pellissippi State’s inaugural Gamma Beta Phi class also honor society’s largest

portrait of femaleDoneisha Wilburn was one of 176 students at Pellissippi State Community College inducted into the national Gamma Beta Phi Society earlier this school year.

The induction was Pellissippi State’s inaugural Gamma Beta Phi class—it was also the biggest community college class in the 40,000-plus-member honor society.

“Pellissippi State had the largest community college induction in the entire organization,” said Kevin Fillers. Fillers, himself a Pellissippi State alumnus, is assistant national executive director of Gamma Beta Phi.

“Gamma Beta Phi sets out to recognize and enrich the lives of academically excellent students who are willing to make a commitment to improving their community through service projects.”

Wilburn, who is pursuing a career in social work, is set to earn her associate’s degree in May.

“I was honored to be named to Gamma Beta Phi,” she said. “It’s the first time I’ve ever been involved in an honors society.”

The Gamma Beta Phi Society is dedicated to promoting education and providing community service to colleges and communities. Pellissippi State’s first Gamma Beta Phi induction took place in October 2014.

The college’s Gamma Beta Phi chapter is one of several student clubs that offer the opportunity for students to give back to the community and be honored for their academic achievements.

“When students get involved in a club, they feel connected to Pellissippi State for years to come,” said Kim Thomas-LaRue, director of Student Life. “Our goal is to lead students to connect and engage on campus so that their academic experience is enhanced.”

Wilburn is active in Student Life and is a member of the college’s Student Activities Board, which plans campus events for students. She says both organizations keep her busy on campus, but she loves opportunities to get to know people and to help.

“It’s an honor to do that: to help out around campus as much as we can,” said Wilburn. “It’s busy, but it’s fun and good to be involved and to help students.

“I started at another community college in Nashville before moving back home and coming to Pellissippi State, but that ended up being the best thing for me. Pellissippi State has helped me start out well on my academic path.”

After Wilburn graduates in May, she plans to transfer to Tennessee State University, where she will continue working toward a bachelor’s degree in social work.

“I love to help people. Knowing that you made an impact and that you changed someone’s life for the better is always a rewarding feeling.”

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

April 18 open house at Pellissippi State for adult learners

Pellissippi State Community College hosts a special open house for adult learners 10 a.m.-1 p.m. Saturday, April 18.

The open house is free and takes place in the College Center of the Goins Administration Building on the Hardin Valley Campus, 10915 Hardin Valley Road. Adult students (those age 24 or older) are invited.

RSVP to attend the open house at www.pstcc.edu/adult.

Participants may bring copies of their transcripts for an informal evaluation of potential college credit. The event also will include information sessions throughout the day:

  • 10:15-11 a.m. and 12:15-1 p.m.—“Affording College as an Adult Learner, Prior Learning Assessment, and Transferring In and Transferring Out”
  • 11:15-noon—Programming for Adult Student Support, a program that supports degree attainment for nontraditional students at Pellissippi State

Additional information about academic departments, services, workforce development, veterans’ services, and access and diversity will be presented as well.

Pellissippi State Community College makes going back to school easier for adult learners by providing unique pathways and services for nontraditional students. The college offers many scholarships and grants for adult students, and additional financial aid is available to students who are eligible. With prior learning assessment, adult learners can receive college credit for experiences ranging from career and military training to volunteer work.

Adult students can take classes at their convenience through online learning and alternative scheduling. Some programs also are offered as cohorts, in which groups of students progress through a degree program together. Created with busy parents and working students in mind, accelerated pathway cohorts allow students go to school part time, yet earn a degree more quickly, thanks to shorter-length courses.

For more information about Pellissippi State, visit www.pstcc.edu or call (865) 694-6400. To request accommodations for a disability, contact the executive director of Human Resources at (865) 694-6607 or humanresources@pstcc.edu.

Eighth annual Festival of Cultures at Pellissippi State celebrates diversity

graphic with dragon that says culture and diversityFood, music and festivities will fill the evening as Pellissippi State Community College celebrates diversity at its eighth annual Festival of Cultures Friday, April 10.

The event is 4-8:30 p.m. in the College Center on the Hardin Valley Campus, 10915 Hardin Valley Road. The Festival of Cultures is free to attend. The community is invited.

“Each year, the Festival of Cultures promotes a wide array of cultural experiences,” said Gayle Wood, director of Access and Diversity, the office that plans the event. “We hope each event encourages our students, faculty and staff members, and the community at large to look at the world from a new cultural perspective.”

At the Festival of Cultures, attendees will receive a Festival Passport booklet. As they browse cultural booths and exhibits, they’ll receive stickers representing various countries to place in their passports.

The event features performances by the Carib Sounds Steel Band, Caribbean Dancers of Atlanta, Chinese Dancers of Atlanta and Hardin Valley Thunder, Pellissippi State’s student bluegrass ensemble.

Additionally, the Festival of Cultures offers children’s activities such as balloon art, glitter tattoos and face painting, a magic show, exhibits from Pellissippi State’s own international students, and international food.

Festival of Cultures is one of the events that make up the college’s arts and culture 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. This year, the arts series commemorates Pellissippi State’s 40th anniversary.

For more information on the festival and other arts series events, visit www.pstcc.edu/arts or call (865) 694-6400. To request accommodations for a disability, contact the executive director of Human Resources at (865) 694-6607 or humanresources@pstcc.edu.

Free open house at Pellissippi State’s Blount County Campus

Pellissippi State Community College’s Blount County Campus hosts the free “Sneak Peek” Open House for prospective students and their families 4:30-6 p.m. Thursday, April 9.

The campus is located at 2731 W. Lamar Alexander Parkway.

Students will receive all the information they need for a smooth entrance into college life: info on admissions, financial aid, services for students with disabilities, dual enrollment and degrees. Details about educational and training opportunities offered through the college’s non-credit division, Business and Community Services, also will be provided.

Guests can take a tour of the 70,485-square-foot, two-story facility, and light refreshments will be served.

To learn more about the open house, call (865) 981-5300. For more information about Pellissippi State, visit www.pstcc.edu or call (865) 694-6400.

To request accommodations for a disability, contact the executive director of Human Resources at (865) 694-6607 or humanresources@pstcc.edu.