Trio window with banner
graduation with podium and speaker
male graduate smiling with diploma

TRiO Staff

Dr. Mark Cotter, Director
(865) 539-7266

Mark Cotter came to TRiO at Pellissippi State in August of 2007 with great hopes to inspire a love of learning in the students here. He has strong ties to East Tennessee with three degrees from the University of Tennessee where he served as a faculty member in Collaborative Learning after six years with the TRiO program there. Dr. Cotter has conducted research on the TRiO program that he was able to present in Edinburgh (Scotland), Prato (Italy), and Budapest (Hungary). His research and publications also include Creative Drama and Problem-Solving.

 Dr. Cotter and his wife, Cindy, have two daughters who have graduated college.  His interests include fencing (he is the advisor for the fencing club), hiking, kayaking, running, and travel. He has also been involved in Children’s International Summer Villages, the East Tennessee Council on Children and Youth, and the Tennessee Association for Arts in Therapy.



Fonda Vickery, Retention Coordinator
(865) 694-6441

Fonda came to TRiO Student Support Service in June of 2011. She has 9 years of TRiO experience, working in both Student Support Service and Upward Bound at another Tennessee college. Although Fonda has a Bachelor of Science Degree in Business Administration from Tennessee Wesleyan College, she truly enjoys working in the education field. “Nothing is more gratifying to me than helping a student accomplish their educational goals.”

Fonda lives in Madisonville and has a son, a daughter & son-in-law, and a brilliant grandson. In her spare time she loves to travel, dabble in photography, cook, and most importantly spend time with her family & friends.


Susan Wolfenbarger, Secretary 2
(865) 539-7267

Susan Wolfenbarger joined the TRiO staff in April of 2013. She has been a student of Pellissippi State in the Administrative Professional Technology program and enjoys helping students with Microsoft Office Products. Susan has been awarded Office Proficiency Assessment Certification from the Biddle Consulting Group. She wants to pay forward the support she has been given at the College.

Susan has two sons. She was born in Germany and grew up in quite a few states as an “Army brat.” Her hobbies include: photography, travel, hiking, bike-riding, and enjoying the company of friends and family.