Archive for February, 2006

Take part in Spring Break poll

Last year we ran polls as a fun way of reader participation, but then the service we used closed down. We just finished programming our own scripts (modified from to be able to offer these again. Cast your vote and see how others are voting!

Today we’re wondering what your plans are for Spring Break, coming up soon. What do you have in mind? Just click on the following link to open the poll in another window.

Spring Break Poll

Wednesday, February 22nd, 2006

24th Annual Book Sale quickly approaching

by Liz Overton

Do you have any books gathering dust? PSTCC’s 24th Annual Faculty Senate Book Sale is quickly approaching and donations are still needed.

Started in 1983, the book sale helps to raise money for PSTCC scholarships. All proceeds from the sale go directly to student scholarship funds.

In 2005, the sale generated $5,500 in scholarship funds for the school. Since 1991, $50,996 dollars have been raised.

Dr. Patricia Zingg said that the scholarships are particularly beneficial to non-traditional students. While any qualified students may be awarded a scholarship regardless of circumstances, PSTCC also tries to make funds available for students who are not necessarily straight out of high school with HOPE scholarships.

All Pellissippi campuses are currently accepting donations for the sale. Any books in decent condition are needed. General interest trade books, textbooks, children’s books, books on tape, cassettes, CDs, VHS, and DVDs are all welcomed.

For more information on donations, contact Patricia Zingg, (865) 694-6679, for the Hardin Valley Campus; Chris Milne, (865) 981-5358, for the Blount County Campus; Cindy Wawrzyniak, (865) 971-5227, for the Division Street Campus; or Richard Whittington, (865) 539-7044, for the Magnolia Campus. Donations to the Pellissippi Campus (Hardin Valley) can be dropped off at the Alexander, McWherter, Goins, and ERC buildings. To contribute a large number of books, contact Patricia Zingg, (865) 694-6679, or Kim Bailey, (865) 694-6685, to make arrangements to have them picked up.

“Of course, we need customers,” Zingg said. “This is a really great way to buy books.” The sale is open to the public as well as PSTCC students and staff. Those interested in the sale are encouraged to come early for the best selection.

Sale dates, times, and locations for each campus are listed below.

Blount County campus:

  • March 13-14, 9 a.m.-6 p.m., and March 15, 9 a.m.-noon, in the Student Lounge

Division Street campus:

  • March 15-16, 9 a.m.-6 p.m., in the Conference Room, Room 116

Magnolia Avenue campus:

  • March 16-17, 9 a.m.-6 p.m., in the Community Room

Hardin Valley campus:

  • March 20-21, 9 a.m.-6 p.m., in the Student Lounge

Tuesday, February 21st, 2006

PSTCC professor weighs in on government’s domestic surveillance

by Nan Krichinsky

Should the U.S. government have the right to use surveillance on its citizens without obtaining warrants in the war on terror? A Pellissippi State security expert has an informed opinion about this question gripping the nation’s attention.

“There’s a legal analysis and a philosophical and moral analysis” of this issue, said John Sterling, program director of the security engineering and administration technology department.

The enemy terrorist seeks total destruction of the U.S., not personal gain like the enemy criminal, he said.

“That’s why we call it a war on terror.”

U.S. Attorney General Alberto Gonzales recently defended President Bush’s domestic surveillance program. Sterling said, “The issue here is a conflict and tension between the right of privacy of U.S. citizens on U.S. soil and the ability of the President to marshal in all of his resources in the event of a terrorist threat.”

The government’s traditional approach to dealing with crime, according to Sterling, has been “we figure out ‘who done it’ and prosecute” within the bounds of the Fourth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution.

“With the whole terrorist thing, if you wait until they’ve done it, its too late,” said Sterling. He said the president is not required to meet a Fourth Amendment condition during a time of war.

“We’re not looking to collect evidence for criminal prosecution; we’re looking to destroy an enemy,” he said.

The 1978 passage of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) gave authority for “emergency” wiretaps and required the FISA court to be notified within 72 hours. Because of changes in technology since this act was passed, Sterling said the laws around the whole issue of electronic surveillance need to be revisited and changed.

He noted that the government is expected to keep us safe while at the same time respect “an absolute right of privacy.”

“Whatever we end up with,” he said, “it needs to be flexible enough to deal with whatever threat we face and always able to move back.”

Thursday, February 16th, 2006

PSTCC announces events for Black History Month

by Lloyd Loveday

“Marches, Boycotts, and Sit-ins” is the theme for PSTCC’s 17th annual Black History Month observance, which involves all campuses.

Dr. Leslie Burl McLemore, a well-known civil rights activist and advocate for minority graduate education, kicked off PSTCC’s Black History Month activities when he spoke on Feb. 2 at the Performing Arts Center on the Hardin Valley Campus and at the Magnolia Campus.

Singer Jonathan Blanchard will give three performances, which will include several musical styles: jazz, blues, reggae, and spiritual. Blanchard began his vocal studies at Tennessee State University in Memphis. He earned both a bachelor and master’s degree in music. He is currently a member of the Atlanta Opera, the Atlanta Lyric Opera, and Capital City Opera.

A variety of activities, presentations, displays and performances are planned for each campus, including a month-long art exhibit at the Division Street and Hardin Valley campuses. All events are open to the public and are free.

Events for each campus are listed below.

Blount County campus:

  • February 17, 7:00 p.m. Jonathan Blanchard will perform.

Division Street campus:

  • Artwork by Pellissippi State student Stephanie Treadwell will be on display at the Division Street campus throughout the month.
  • Feb. 17, 8:00 to 10:00 a.m. Taste of African Coffees.
  • Feb. 22, noon The African Drum/Dance Ensemble will perform.
  • Feb. 24, 8:00 to 10:00 a.m. Taste of African Coffees.
  • Feb. 27, 11:30 a.m. Soul Food Luncheon.

Hardin Valley campus:

  • Jewelry made by local craftswoman Kristine Taylor will be on display during the month of February at the Hardin Valley campus, and Pellissippi State staff member Charles Stinnett will also have his personal collection of African artifacts on display.
  • Feb. 14, 1:00 p.m. The Active Black Student Association will present, “Journeys Through Black History,” with music, poetry and dance in Goins Auditorium.
  • Feb. 15, 9:00 to 10:30 a.m. Taste of African Coffees in the Goins Rotunda, and Jonathan Blanchard, noon in the Goins Auditorium.
  • Feb. 16, 1:00 p.m. Avon W. Rollins Sr., executive director of the Beck Cultural Exchange Center, will talk about the Civil Rights Movement in Knoxville, in the Goins Auditorium.
  • Feb. 22, 9:00 a.m. to 10:30 a.m. Taste of African Coffees in the Goins Rotunda.
  • Feb. 28, 11:30 a.m. Soul Food Luncheon/ My Favorite Instructor Day in Goins 140A.

Magnolia campus:

  • Feb. 16, 10:30 a.m. African Explorers & Adventurers, and Jonathan Blanchard will perform at 7:00 p.m.

Schools and communities in the United States celebrate “Black History Month” every February in large part because of Dr. Carter Woodson. He is known as the “Father of Black History”.

Woodson was born in Virginia to freed slaves in 1875. Throughout Woodson’s education and teaching career he found that the history of African Americans was being ignored. He began the Association for the Study of Negro Life and History in 1915.

In February of 1926 he created Negro History Week.

Woodson died in 1950. His Negro History Week continued until 1976, when it officially became Black History Month.

Monday, February 13th, 2006

Spring Break trip to help rebuild New Orleans

by Michael Cover

A trip that will send students to help rebuild New Orleans’ 9th Ward during Pellissippi State’s spring break is now being organized.

A sign-up meeting will be held Friday, Feb. 10, at 9:30 a.m. in room 225A of the Goins Building.

Todd Duren, an instructor at PSTCC, is organizing the trip, which is not officially endorsed by the college. Volunteers will help to clean out and repair houses in the parts of New Orleans most affected by Hurricane Katrina.

Food and lodging will be provided, but students will need to cover their own personal costs and have a vehicle to transport them. Sponsorships for the additional costs are available for five students who sign up early, according to Duren.

“This is an historic opportunity to have a direct impact on saving a community in a great American city,” said Duren.

The trip will leave on Saturday, March 4 and return on Saturday, March 11. Students who volunteer will stay at FEMA’s Camp Algiers.

Volunteers will be assisting ACORN, an organization that is working to rebuild neighborhoods in New Orleans without displacing the local residents.

For further information and to sign up, students can contact Todd Duren via email at

Monday, February 6th, 2006