Archive for April, 2010

Pellissippi Choirs perform

By Jacob Haskew

The Chorus Concert for all Pellissippi choirs will be held Thursday, April 29, at 7 p.m. in the Clayton Performing Arts Center.

Bill Brewer, the choral director, will conduct three different choirs. He will be assisted by a few student directors.

The Variations Choir, the Alumni Choir and the Concert Chorale will all perform selections during the evening.

The Variations Choir is an auditioned group that traveled to Hungary this year. They will present a slide-show of their experience during their performance.

Brewer also welcomed any graduated choral members to sing with the Alumni Choir.

Wednesday, April 28th, 2010

Magnolia Drama Club presents a night of plays

By Josh Hepperly

The Drama Club of Magnolia Avenue will continue a presentation of short plays tonight at 7 p.m. in the Community Room.

Distance Learning Facilitator David Jones urged everyone to “come one, come all..”

Jones, as well as students Zoey Carter and Kelly Osbourne, have each written and directed their own play.

Jones said this will give PSCC students, faculty, staff and members of the community an opportunity to witness Pellissippi’s homegrown talent.

Jones is directing a  “The Brief Cases: Espionage” and says this play shows what happens when espionage exposes the underbelly of the Pellissippi “elite.”

“(It’s a) true story that’s completely fabricated,” said Jones.

The evening will also include performances of the student plays. Carter will showcase “Lovely Pancakes” and Osbourne will present “Dates That Blind.”

The shows began Tuesday, April 27, and will conclude with tonight’s performance.

There will be a question and answer period after the shows in which the directors will be open to field any questions the audience may have.

“Please come out and support this local talent. Who knows, you might just enjoy yourself,” said Jones.

Wednesday, April 28th, 2010

Hearts4Haiti Benefit Concert will showcase student talent

By Haylee Turner

The Hearts4Haiti Benefit Concert is tomorrow at Pellissippi’s Hardin Valley Pond from 7-10 p.m.

Kenyatta Rogers, a student organizer, said the event will feature performances from Pellissippi students, including bands, dancers, poets, musicians and singers.

Tickets are $5 for adults and $3 for students (with student ID) and children, 12 years-old and younger. The event is open to the public.

Rogers said all proceeds from the event will go to organizations helping the people of Haiti recover from the widespread devestation caused by the earthquake in January.

The American Red Cross and Partners in Health will be present to accept donations. Checks should be made out to the Pellissippi State Foundation.

In the event of rain, the showcase will be moved to Clayton Performing Arts Center.

Friday, April 23rd, 2010

“De-stress” with Relaxation Day

By Martin Wood

Pellissippi yoga instructor, Betty Kalister, will host Relaxation Day tomorrow in the Community Room of the Magnolia Campus from 11 a.m. until 2 p.m.

“(This event) is designed for students, faculty and staff to take a few minutes out of their stressful day to relax and de-stress,” said Kalister.

Kalister will use diffused aromatherapy oils in the room and instruct participants in relaxation positions such as the recline twist and the supta baddha konsana. There will also be hot tea available to help in the relaxation process.

Kalister notes that this is an excellent opportunity for students, faculty and staff to relieve the stress of the end of the semester.

Kalister received her certified yoga instructor training from Yoga Alliance.  Her training was in Restorative Yoga Type (RYT).

Tuesday, April 20th, 2010

“Music is a language”

By Mark Attanasio

Pellissippi music student, Blake Sensenbach, “speaks” to the beat of a different drum.

“Music is a language. It can be understood by anyone,” said Sensenbach.

Sensenbach, a music major in his third year at Pellissippi, has indulged his passion for music throughout his life. It has become a tool and an outlet for him.

“Music is definitely a form of interpretation, but it’s also a form of communication,” said Sensenbach.

Sensenbach has honed his music skills by learning as much as he can at Pellissippi. He says that learning music theory has allowed him to discover new things about his instrument, the bass guitar.

“I am more able to play music closer to what I want it to sound like. That is really the hardest part about playing an instrument or improvising,” said Sensenbach.

Sensenbach has taken all sorts of theory classes, ear training and music basics for several genres, but his favorite part of the Pellissippi Music Department is jazz band. He enjoys how much this class allows for improvisation and feels that it uses the most of one’s ability.

“You don’t have to play everything note for note,” said Sensenbach. “You have to stick with the chords of the song, but everyone just takes turns improvising.”

In addition to playing music for school, Sensenbach also plays with several different people and music groups, exploring many different genres. These include an experimental metal band called “Amidst The Mannequins” and two bluegrass bands called “The Holloway Sisters” and “Outta The Blue.”

Sensenbach is excited about his future in music. Touring the world is on the list, but Sensenbach holds his gazing to a minimum to focus on preparation at the moment.

“Right now I am just trying to prepare myself,” said Sensenbach. “I want to travel with a band, then ultimately work in a studio as a musician, then maybe even run my own.”

Sensenbach enjoys talking to people who are thinking of becoming music majors and praises Pellissippi’s program.

“It’s a good thing to get in an eclectic group of people,” Sensenbach said. “The music majors here at Pellissippi are that kind of tight knit group, brought together by a common interest, which is music.”

Sunday, April 18th, 2010

Swing Big for Students Golf Tournament

By Corey Ogle

The sixth annual Swing Big for Students Golf Tournament is Tuesday, May 4, at Egwani Farms in Rockwood Tenn.

Pat Myers, tournament director, said the cost is $100 per player or $400 per team. Sponsorships are also available to purchase. Registration ends April 30.

“Tell people there are slots available,” said Myers.

The money not only goes towards helping Pellissippi, but this year a portion of the proceeds will create the Swing Big for Students Scholarship.

There are two sessions of 18 holes of golf. The “shotgun” session will go off at 8 a.m., followed by the second session at 1 p.m.

Myers said there will be prizes awarded for those who place first, second and third. Golf cart, driving range, snacks and lunch will be provided.

Sunday, April 18th, 2010

Pellissippi adds new classes

By Lauren Hulsey

Pellissippi State has added two new classes to its course list, available this fall semester.

Introduction to Shakespeare and Introduction to Poetry were both recently approved by the Tennessee Board of Regents. The courses will be taught by Edward Francisco, professor of English and writer in residence at Pellissippi State.

Currently, Pellissippi offers Creative Writing and Introduction to Fiction. The new poetry course will align Pellissippi’s course offerings with that of the University of Tennessee’s English Department.

Introduction to Shakespeare will be offered as an elective and will cover various tragedies, comedies and histories. This will be the first course offered at Pellissippi to focus specifically on his work.

Sunday, April 18th, 2010

Magnolia campus hosts Fashion Show and Award Program

By Josh Hepperly

The second annual Fashion Show and Award Program will be held on Friday, April 23, at the Magnolia campus and will begin at 5 p.m.

The event will be hosted by the Active Black Students Association (ABSA) and is a culmination celebrating the hard work of its members and their achievements this year.

Yolanda Roebuck, department secretary of Business and Computer Technology, said the award program will honor someone who ABSA members feel made a positive impact on the community.

This year’s recipient is John L. Jackson, music director at Community Evangelistic Church. His volunteer work includes directing music for FRESHWIND, a choir comprised of Knoxville city youth, Boy Scouts of America, Young Life, Emerald Youth Foundation, Cedine Ministries and many more.

“He is an inspiration to the youth and young adults,” said Roebuck.

The theme of the fashion show this year is “True Essentials.” Pellissippi students will be modeling clothing provided by Belk of West Town Mall.

Roebuck said admission is free and the event is open to the public.

Saturday, April 17th, 2010

New funding formula for Pellissippi State

By Max Smith

The new “outcomes-based” funding formula, expected to take effect in 2011, claims more fairness towards smaller institutions, especially community colleges.

Representatives of the Tennessee Higher Education Commission (THEC) came to the Pellissippi campus on April 1 to discuss the funding changes.

Dr. Rusty Lieberman, who presented the new formula, said funding will be adjusted to each individual college’s mission statement and will be based on the achievement of predetermined “outcomes.”

“There are multiple productivity points…the school should be focused on those end points rather than who comes in the door,” said Lieberman. “As a student transfers, that’s a success. Job placement, that’s a success. These things aren’t included in the current model.”

Pellissippi can expect the selected outcomes for most community colleges to include not only achievement of associates degrees, but also success in remedial development, the success of students after they transfer and job placement of students.

The formula will also take into account certain subpopulations, such as military families, in how they weigh outcomes.

During the April 1 discussion, some members of the Pellissippi faculty and staff voiced concern about how THEC could reliably derive data from these “subjective outcomes.”

“It’s not without its vices,” acknowledged Lieberman. “But they are a trade up from what we are currently dealing with.”

Saturday, April 17th, 2010

Successful RecycleMania competition awards the Science Club

by Haylee Turner

The Science Club, under their advisor Dr. Jerry Burns, is enjoying a $500 prize as a reward for their work with RecycleMania.

The competition is an annual one which began Jan. 31 and ended March 27. The object of the project was to see which participating club could collect the heighest weight of recyclables from Pellissippi campuses.

A total amount of 12,984 pounds, more than 6 tons, was collected over the 10-week span, said Mary Denman, the project overseer.

Even though the actual competition is over, Recycling Club still plans to carry out their mission to make the Pellissippi Campus a greener place. Anyone interested in being a part of the effort can find information by emailing Denman at

Volunteers usually meet behind McWherter on the loading dock around 1 p.m. on Fridays.  Lending a hand to this project includes emptying, sorting, weighing and eventually placing the campus recyclables in the cardboard dumpster.

Before RecycleMania began, Pellissippi did not recycle cardboard, says Denman.  An estimated 15,000 to 30,000 pounds of the material was being wasted annually.

Once the project began gaining momentum, the faculty, staff and administration began stockpiling old magazines, newspapers and books and calling on the volunteers to recycle them rather than just throwing them in the trash.

In May of this year, Denman will be transferring to the University of Tennessee. She has been in charge of campus recycling for the past 2-3 years.  It is unclear what will happen to the program at that point.

“I am not sure what will become of the recycling yet, but I don’t see it going away any time soon,” said Denman. “Too many people have put their heart and soul into it.”

Saturday, April 17th, 2010