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Pellissippi State highlights instrumental music in Nov. 15 free concert

The free 2012-13 Music Concert Series at Pellissippi State Community College continues on Nov. 15 with a performance focused exclusively on instrumental music. The event promises to offer a wide variety of selections and musical styles.

Music at the Instrumental Concert will include separate ensembles of brass, guitar and percussion. A mixed small instrumental ensemble and a bluegrass ensemble perform as well. The groups are set to present a variety of musical genres, including classical, blues, jazz and folk.

Pianists will perform on Steinway pianos, in keeping with Pellissippi State’s status as an All Steinway School. The Pellissippi State Foundation conducted the All Steinway School fundraising campaign in 2010 in order to elevate the college’s Music program to world-class status. The community college now boasts 13 Steinway pianos in studios, practice rooms and performance venues.

Many of the student performers are pursuing the college’s new Associate of Fine Arts degree, concentrating in Music. Through the Tennessee Transfer Pathways, all credits from the degree transfer to other Tennessee Board of Regents institutions and the University of Tennessee.

The Instrumental Concert begins at 7 p.m. and takes place in the Clayton Performing Arts Center at the Hardin Valley Campus. Ample free parking is available, and admission is free. Donations are accepted at the door for the Pellissippi State Foundation on behalf of the Music Scholarship Fund.

The 2012-13 Pellissippi State Music Concert Series is one component of 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.

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

For additional information about the arts series, call (865) 694-6400 or visit

Pellissippi State faculty speaker addresses fighting heritage of East Tennesseans

Scottish and Irish immigrants poured into America in the 1700s and 1800s, many of them migrating to this region. Their impact on the culture of East Tennessee is still felt today, says Pat Riddle. Riddle is a faculty member and program coordinator of the Mechanical Engineering concentration in Engineering Technology at Pellissippi State Community College.

In a Nov. 15 presentation at the college titled “Born Fighting,” Riddle discusses the waves of emigration from the British Isles and how the thinking and behavior of native Tennesseans are still influenced by their ancestral heritage. The discussion is part of the 2012-13 Faculty Lecture Series, which showcases the expertise of Pellissippi State faculty members. The series lectures are designed to be informative and entertaining jumping castle sydney.

Riddle, who has Scottish blood coursing through his own veins, speaks at 12:30-1:30 p.m., in the Goins Building Auditorium at the Hardin Valley Campus. The event is free, and the community is invited to attend.

“Red hair and quick tempers are stereotypes of people of Scots-Irish descent,” said Riddle. “There’s a lot of truth in those stereotypes. The Scots are wired to fight.

“The Scots and Scots-Irish have always had to fight, and have long been known as the best fighters. The border region that includes Scotland and England has been in a constant state of war. The Normans and Saxons couldn’t conquer the locals. The Romans couldn’t conquer them, and ultimately they were sent to America to serve as a buffer between the ‘civilized’ colonies and Native Americans.”

The propensity to fight persists, Riddle says: The majority of the Marines come from Tennessee, North Carolina, South Carolina, Georgia, Kentucky and Virginia. Fighting is in East Tennesseans’ DNA and is a pivotal element of our regional culture. The challenge we have today, he says, is to direct that impulse and energy in positive ways.

The Faculty Lecture Series is part of Pellissippi State’s new arts series, The Arts at Pellissippi State, which brings to the community cultural activities ranging from music and theatre to international celebrations, lectures, and the visual arts.

The next lecturer is the English Department’s Keith Norris. Norris speaks on “A Hobbit’s Holiday: The Extraordinary Journey of Bilbo Baggins,” on Nov. 29, 7-8 p.m., in the Clayton Performing Arts Center at the Hardin Valley Campus.

For more information about the Faculty Lecture Series, call Pellissippi State at (865) 694-6400 or visit To request accommodations for a disability, contact the executive director of Human Resources and Affirmative Action for Pellissippi State at (865) 694-6607 or

Help beat Kentucky by donating blood at Pellissippi State

Community members who wish to take part in the “25th Annual Battle of the Orange and Blue” organized by Medic Regional Blood Center may do so at Pellissippi State Community College on Nov. 14. The blood drive, which is held each year prior to the University of Tennessee vs. University of Kentucky football game, encourages friendly competition to see which community can turn out the most blood donors. Kentucky has won the blood drive competition for the past two years.

Those who donate will receive a free game day T-shirt and a coupon for a one-topping pizza from Papa John’s. More importantly, donors will play an instrumental role in keeping the blood supply at necessary levels to serve community members in the East Tennessee region.

There is a need for all blood types. Blood and its components are used for transfusions, as well as in the treatment of cancer patients and in the treatment of those with clotting disorders. One donation can help up to three people.

Donors must be at least 17 years of age and weigh at least 110 pounds. They should not have fasted prior to arriving. In fact, Medic suggests that donors eat a meal and drink fluids approximately three hours prior to donating. Participants are asked to provide photo identification and a list of all current medications to Medic personnel at the site.

Event hours are 8:30 a.m.-6 p.m. The mobile unit will be parked in the F-1 lot at Pellissippi State’s Hardin Valley Campus.

Additional information on the donation process can be found at

Pellissippi State students benefit from international fiber artist’s visit during film fest

Fiber artist Lori Zimmerman brings something extra to this year’s Southern Appalachian International Film Festival at Pellissippi State Community College.

Pellissippi State students get an audience with an emerging artist who understands the fiber art world, and SOAPIFF organizers gain a speaker who moves the discussion of art beyond the world of filmmaking.

SOAPIFF is scheduled for Nov. 12-17 at the college, with all campuses hosting screenings.

Following an exhibition of her work at the World of Threads Festival in Ontario, Zimmerman travels to Knoxville for a session with Pellissippi State students.

“What I’ve prepared is a presentation that looks at the definition of what fiber art is and explores major trends in the art world—the fiber art world,” she said. “So I’m hoping to create a visual feast for people, and then the discussion can go wherever the discussion wants to go.”

Zimmerman’s overview encompasses process, technique, the definition of art itself and what actually constitutes a fiber.

“I’ve been looking a lot at fiber art trends all over the world and noticing that the one adjective you could use is the ‘explosion’ of exploration and of pushing of boundaries,” said Zimmerman, who is working on an article for Fiber Art Now magazine about the topic.

Her work incorporates fabric painting, photography, freestyle hand embroidery and collage. Zimmerman’s studio in the Los Angeles area also serves as a laboratory when she experiments with preserving natural specimens, such as leaves and seed pods.

“My work is an exploration of the effects of time on materials and the beauty inherent in aging,” she said. “Like a conversation that explores a specific topic, I open a dialogue through the use of materials, colors and images, conversing with what is on the fabric. As in any conversation, I stumble upon tense moments, confusion, delight, surprises and even moments of brief enlightenment.”

Zimmerman has been at work on her craft since the 1980s, when she earned a Bachelor of Fine Arts from California College of the Arts and Crafts. She says she was determined to prove she could make a living as an artist, accomplishing that after graduation with work in several commercial venues.

One job at an interior design studio prompted Zimmerman to learn more about business. She earned a Master of Business Administration degree from the University of Southern California and worked in nonprofit management before deciding to return to the creative impulse that drove her to become an artist.

Zimmerman’s visit is sponsored by SOAPIFF, the Tennessee Consortium for International Studies and Pellissippi State’s Art and Media Technologies programs.

View Zimmerman’s art and blog at See the schedule of films for SOAPIFF at

Learn more about Pellissippi State by visiting or calling (865) 694-6400.

SOAPIFF hosts veteran movie executive–producer at Pellissippi State

Adam Leipzig is the former president of National Geographic Films, a past senior vice president at Walt Disney Studios, and a longtime film and theatre producer. Many of the films he has been directly involved with—“March of the Penguins,” “Dead Poets Society,” “Honey, I Shrunk the Kids”—have become household names. He has also launched more than 300 theatre productions and performance events, written for the New York Times and other publications, designed and built four successful businesses, and consulted with dozens more. He currently serves as the publisher and managing editor of the popular online magazine Cultural Weekly.

You want to make that movie? You need an insider. You need someone who knows filmmaking and Hollywood and sits comfortably at the intersection of creative culture and business.

Meet Adam Leipzig, a former movie executive, an independent producer and the speaker for the Seventh Annual Southern Appalachian International Film Festival at Pellissippi State Community College.

The film festival runs Nov. 12-17 at the college’s five sites: the Hardin Valley, Division Street, Magnolia Avenue, and Strawberry Plains campuses in Knox County and the Blount County Campus.

Leipzig’s remarks follow the showing of the classic film “Dead Poets Society,” a movie he was directly involved with, and they precede the screening of another popular project he acquired, “March of the Penguins.” He’s set to speak at 6:45 p.m. on Monday, Nov. 12, at the Hardin Valley Campus.

With 25 years of experience making movies, Leipzig has plenty of insights about the process of filmmaking.

“I will share behind-the-scenes stories about each movie,” he said. “I’ll pull back the curtain about how movies really get made and what happens off screen.”

Leipzig rose through the ranks at Walt Disney and saw it grow into a big studio with more productions and critical successes. Initially, Leipzig was one of eight executives working in the creative group, which also included legendary Hollywood executives Jeffrey Katzenberg and Michael Eisner.

“After six years, those eight people had become 130 people and we split into three different divisions, and I had been promoted up and up,” Leipzig said. “I was no longer doing at the studio what I came to do, which was make movies. I had been promoted up so far that there were lots of people intermediating the process.”

Leipzig struck out on his own as an independent producer and got the chance to lead a new venture, National Geographic Films.

“In 2003, National Geographic asked me to design a strategy for their successful presence in the motion picture business, which I did. Then they asked me to become the president of that company,” he said.

These days, Leipzig consults, writes, and talks about something integral to moviemaking and close to his heart: creativity. He currently serves as publisher and managing editor of the popular online magazine Cultural Weekly ( The publication examines how creative culture intersects with media, money, technology and entertainment.

He also believes in sharing his experiences with aspiring filmmakers and college students. To that end, he is writing two books on filmmaking.

“Inside Track for Independent Filmmakers: Get Your Movie Made, Get Your Movie Seen, and Turn the Tables on Hollywood” will be available as an e-book in December and as a trade paperback in January 2013. He will be pre-selling autographed first editions at the festival. Leipzig is also co-writing “Filmmaking in the 21st Century,” a new college textbook for Bedford/St. Martin’s (Macmillan). He anticipates its publication in late 2014.

Leipzig’s visit is sponsored by SOAPIFF, the Tennessee Consortium for International Studies, and Pellissippi State’s Art and Media Technologies programs.

View the SOAPIFF screening schedule for Pellissippi State at To learn more about the college, visit or call (865) 694-6400.

Pellissippi State presents Nov. 29 open house for prospective students, families

Pellissippi State Community College hosts “Pellissippi Preview,” an open house for prospective students of all ages on Thursday, Nov. 29, 5:30-8 p.m. The event takes place in the Goins Administration Building on the Hardin Valley Campus. Family members also are encouraged to attend.

Pellissippi Preview attendees will have the opportunity to meet current students, faculty and staff. There will be a “browse session” for prospective students to talk to faculty and staff about all areas of college life: choosing a major, applying for admission, and pursuing financial aid and scholarships. The event includes presentations by Enrollment Services (Admissions) and Financial Aid as well.

High school seniors in attendance are eligible to win one of two $250 scholarships provided by the Pellissippi State Foundation.

Pellissippi State has nearly 11,000 students at its five sites: Blount County Campus, Division Street Campus, Hardin Valley Campus, Magnolia Avenue Campus and the new Strawberry Plains Campus.

Participants are asked to RSVP to

To learn more about the open house, 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

Film festival returns to Pellissippi State with screenings at all five campuses

With theater screenings at all five Knox and Blount county campuses of Pellissippi State Community College, East Tennessee film enthusiasts will have a myriad of viewing options during the upcoming seventh annual Southern Appalachian Film Festival.

Scheduled for Nov. 12-17, SOAPIFF promotes and preserves the work of independent filmmakers. It also encourages film production and film culture in Southern Appalachia.

The six-day festival is sponsored by the Tennessee Consortium for International Studies. TnCIS ( is located on the Hardin Valley Campus of Pellissippi State. The Hardin Valley Campus is in Knox County, as are the Division Street, Magnolia Avenue and Strawberry Plains campuses. The Blount County Campus is the fifth of the college’s locations.

SOAPIFF features full-length and short films in the following genres: Appalachian, art/experimental, children’s, cultural minorities, documentary, environmental, foreign/international, gender/women’s, gay/lesbian/bisexual/transgender, independent and young filmmakers.

As part of this year’s festival, SOAPIFF welcomes film industry veteran Adam Leipzig to Pellissippi State. Leipzig, who has served as a Disney executive and as director of National Geographic Films, has brought more than 25 movies to the screen. A reception in his honor takes place on Nov. 12 at 6:45 p.m. in the Goins Building Auditorium on the Hardin Valley Campus.

The director of one of the documentaries being screened also makes an appearance. Documentarian Nancy Ghertner, who directed “After I Pick the Fruit,” visits the Hardin Valley Campus on Nov. 13. The screening of her film begins at 7:55 p.m. in the Goins Building Auditorium.

SOAPIFF also brings to Knoxville a well-known international artist, Lori Zimmerman. Zimmerman presents and discusses current trends in fiber art on Nov. 13 at noon in the gallery of the Bagwell Center for Media and Art on the Hardin Valley Campus.

A complete schedule of SOAPIFF screenings and activities can be found at

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

Pellissippi State announces Veterans Day activities

The campuses of Pellissippi State Community College have events scheduled throughout the week leading up to Veterans Day. Veterans Day is celebrated Monday, Nov. 12, to honor veterans for their service.

Here are the highlights of the activities:

Hardin Valley Campus

  • Thursday and Friday, Nov. 8-9—The campus hosts a display called “In Their Own Words.” The exhibit is a collection of stories, photos, and memorabilia by Pellissippi State veterans and their loved ones. The display is in the Rotunda of the Goins Building.
  • Thursday, Nov. 8, 7:30 a.m.—Pellissippi State presents a breakfast for veterans in the Cafeteria Annex of the Goins Building.
  • Thursday, Nov. 8, 11:30 a.m.—Gathering to thank veterans for their service. Cake and punch will be served in the Rotunda of the Goins Building.

The Hardin Valley Campus is located at 10915 Hardin Valley Road.

Blount County Campus

  • Thursday and Friday, Nov. 8-9—The campus hosts a display of veterans’ memorabilia in the William “Keith” McCord Lobby.
  • Friday, Nov. 9, 10:30 a.m.—Pellissippi State thanks veterans for their service at a gathering in the McCord Lobby. Cake will be served.
  • Monday, Nov. 12, 2:30 p.m.—The campus hosts the “Military Uniform Through the Eyes of God,” a presentation by veteran Thomas Vananda in the West Chevrolet Auditorium. The event is sponsored by the Blount County Bible Club.

The Blount County Campus is located at 2731 W. Lamar Alexander Pkwy., Friendsville.

Magnolia Avenue Campus

  • Friday, Nov. 9, 9:30 a.m.—Participants gather in the plaza to recite the Pledge of Allegiance and sing “The Star-Spangled Banner.” There will be a display of military memorabilia provided by staff, faculty and students. Cake will be served in the Lobby.
  • Nov. 9, 11:30 a.m.-1 p.m.—Luncheon for veterans by invitation only has been scheduled in the campus Community Room. Retired Major Max Lemons will be the luncheon speaker and his topic will be “Words of Encouragement.”

The Magnolia Avenue Campus is located at 1610 E. Magnolia Ave.

Strawberry Plains Campus

  • Tuesday, Nov. 6, 10 a.m.—A screening of the movie “The Guardian” is scheduled in Room 2500 on the main floor. Popcorn will be served.
  • Wednesday, Nov. 7—It’s Camo Day, and Pellissippi State is giving away footballs and lanyards donated by the National Guard. Pellissippi State’s Service-Learning program oversees the giveaway.
  • Thursday, Nov. 8, 9:30 a.m.—American Legion Post 104 will raise the flag, display a military vehicle and set up a rock-climbing wall. Volunteers and canines with Smoky Mountain Service Dogs also will be present. The nonprofit group trains dogs to help people with disabilities, including disabled veterans.

The Strawberry Plains Campus is located at 7210 Strawberry Plains Pike.

To learn more about Pellissippi State, call (865) 694-6400 or visit

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

Pellissippi State student artist displays landscapes at Strawberry Plains Campus

The oil landscapes of artist and Pellissippi State Community College student Matthew Lawson are now on display in the Lobby of the College’s Strawberry Plains Campus. Lawson is the first artist to exhibit a collection at the newly opened campus, but Mike North, campus dean, says he hopes to see many more.

“At the start of the year, the staff and I talked about wanting to bring art on campus,” said North. “We talked about wanting it to come from the community here and, ideally, a student. That’s exactly what happened when we learned about Matt’s artwork, and we’re excited to feature him at the Strawberry Plains Campus.”

The community is invited to view Lawson’s paintings Monday, Wednesday, and Friday, 8 a.m.-4:30 p.m., and Tuesday and Thursday, 8 a.m.-9 p.m. The campus is at 7201 Strawberry Plains Pike.

Lawson’s painting career began, ironically, when he couldn’t join other students in an art class at Carter High School. His classmates were working with clay, but because of allergies, Lawson sat in the hallway painting. His teacher took a photograph of him and asked him to paint a self-portrait. The painting was entered into an art contest sponsored by VSA, the international organization on arts and disability. Ultimately, it was displayed around the country, even spending time in the Smithsonian.

That success, coupled with the inspiration Lawson got by watching artist Bob Ross on television, spurred him to pursue oil painting. So far, the aspiring pharmacist has given all his paintings to family members.

For more information about the display, call (865) 694-6400 or email Catherine Adaska,

Testing deadlines announced for prospective Pellissippi State Nursing students

Students who wish to apply for admission to the Nursing program at Pellissippi State Community College for fall 2013 have a critical testing deadline to meet before the start of February 2013.

New applicants must complete the TEAS V (Test of Essential Academic Skills, version 5) exam no later than Jan. 31. Day, evening and weekend testing hours are available.

Although the deadline is three months away, testing slots fill quickly, so early registration is recommended. Classes for the fall 2013 term begin in August.

Nursing applications and transcripts also must be submitted to Pellissippi State by the deadline of Jan. 31. Admission to Pellissippi State is required before applying to the Nursing program.

The TEAS V exam is offered at all five locations of Pellissippi State. The cost of the test is $40. Registration may be completed online at

For more information on the exam, call (865) 694-6400 or visit