Archive for October, 2015

Foundation and Fundraising

Foundation scholarships fill important gaps that inhibit students from pursuing an education.


For the past 10 years at Pellissippi State Community College has hosted a free golf tournament.The purpose of the event raises money and awareness about Foundation Scholarship and tuition-free college through Tennessee Promise.


Patricia Myers who has been responsible for creating and implementing fundraising events in the past 10 years says that her goal for Pellissippi is to “Keep donors engaged with Pellissippi State and to let them know how their support is changing lives!”.The 11th Annual Swing Big golf tournament takes place every year as it did this year on Tues. September 15, 2015.


Money raised from the gulf fundraiser provides scholarship money for eligible recipients. However, enough money is usually raised to provide financial aid for students who do not qualify for scholarships such as Tennessee Promise.


Since the community college is a state institution, most people tend to believe that the state provides most of the schools funding. However, the truth is that they provide very little funding which could potentially jeopardize the education of many students.


Due to Patricia Myers implantation of fundraising, many students are able to pursue an education at Pellissippi State due to the help of the school’s generous donors. Building improvements; new equipment; money to build new buildings; and award money for students and employees are also some of the things that the fundraiser contributes to.


Myers overall goal is to invite more community members to our campuses so that they can meet our students and hear their stories! Myers said “Our students are out most valuable assets!” which has been proven with her actions as she leaves her position in the hands of Anesia McDonald who is now responsible for all Fundraising events.

Wednesday, October 21st, 2015

COSA hosts “Take Back the Night”

by Kendall Calkins


The Council of Student Advocates will be holding “Take Back the Night” at the Hardin Valley campus Thursday, Oct. 22 from 6 p.m.-8 p.m.


“We want to raise awareness about rape on college campuses,” said Student Activity Board member Alayna Strickland about the event that will include speakers and a walk for awareness.


“We are hoping to have student victims speak and share their survival stories,” and COSA liaison Joshua Anderson.


The event was held last year at the Division Street campus. Anderson and Strickland both “hope to build upon last year’s successful event.”

Wednesday, October 21st, 2015

State Representative Proposes More Dual Enrollment

by Janelle Piper


A state representative has proposed a bill that would require all public high schools to offer dual-credit courses.


Rep. Harry Brooks of Knoxville has sponsored a bill that would require all public high schools to offer at least four dual-credit courses by July 1, 2017. The bill was filed for introduction on Sept. 17.


The bill allows postsecondary institutions to initiate dual-credit opportunities with individual high schools.


Pellissippi State’s dual enrollment specialist, Spencer Joy, says, “Pellissippi State services Knox and Blount counties, and we have a partnership, in some capacity, with every high school in our service area. The majority of high schools in our service area actually offer courses at their high schools.”


Pellissippi State has already been expanding postsecondary opportunities to high school students. Joy says the college is offering more courses throughout its service area than it ever has before.


One of the college’s biggest goals is to expand opportunities outside of general education. “We are trying desperately to figure out ways to branch out in areas other than your typical general-education courses,” says Joy.


Students with an unweighted GPA of 2.0 and minimum ACT or PLAN scores of 13 in all subject areas can currently take advantage of postsecondary opportunities at Pellissippi State. Qualifying students can receive a grant for one course in their junior year and one course in their senior year, says Joy.


For general education courses, students will need an unweighted GPA of 3.0 and minimum ACT or PLAN scores of 18 in English, 19 in reading, and, for math or science courses, at least a 19 in math.


Students can take courses prior to their junior year, however, they are not awarded a grant. “State legislation says they can start when they are freshman, but the grant is not available to them until they are juniors,” says Joy.


This semester, Pellissippi has 1,231 dual enrollment students. The majority are on high school campuses throughout Knox and Blount counties. Joy says, “We have grown each year, our last three or four years. We offer more and more sections each year.” The college currently boasts around 90 sections a year on high school campuses.


The bill proposed by Brooks amends the 2010 Tennessee Code Annotated, Title 49 Chapter 15.


Rep. Harry Brooks of Knoxville

Wednesday, October 21st, 2015

Student from East Africa

by Zaynab Bowers


Angelica Ndayiragije, a student at Pellissippi State Community College, moved from Burundi, East Africa, to Texas at the age of 4 in hopes of a better future.


“The reason me and my family moved here was because it was dangerous where we were living,” said Ndayiragije. “My mother wanted me to have better life opportunities.”


Her childhood was not that easy in Texas either. She was teased by students for being from Africa and struggled to fit in.


“I had to learn a whole new language and culture that often clashed with my home culture,” said Ndayiragije. “At home I was supposed to act a certain way, but at school, I was supposed to act another way.”


Ndayiragije later moved to Knoxville when she was accepted into the University of Tennessee’s Bridge Program. She is studying journalism at Pellissippi and will transfer to UT next fall to complete her bachelor’s degree.


Ndayiragije said that she is a lot happier with the environment at Pellissippi than she has been in other places.

“I like the students at Pellissippi, and I love the professors,” she said.


After she completes her studies, she hopes to achieve her lifelong dream of working for CNN.


“They stir up things that don’t need to be stirred,” she said. Ndayiragije believes that the news either exaggerates news or doesn’t inform people correctly. “I want to spread news the right way.”


Wednesday, October 21st, 2015

Pellissippi Spring Play

by Jacob Gosnell

Pellissippi State English professor has written an original play to be performed in the spring.

The original play, “Which Side Are You On: The Florence Reese Story,” was finished on Oct. 1, said the Pellissippi State English professor and play writer, Edward Francisco.

Francisco’s play was written as a tribute to the many coal miners of the 20th Century who lived through strenuous times.  With coal miners in Francisco’s ancestry himself, the English professor was motivated to show the experiences of those working in the mines. 

Francisco originally intended to write his play as an adaptation to Storming Heaven by Denise Giardina.  Due to copyright complications however, Francisco was challenged to gather his own information regarding the harshness labor strife on the coalfields.  Over 40 sources of coal mining interviews, novels, non-fiction, biographical, and auto-biographical documents were researched over a period of 6 months in order to give an imaginatively accurate and authentic illustration to the play, said Francisco. 

Professor Francisco’s play was briefly described as a story of a feisty woman that composed a song that became the anthem for the civil rights movements.  The song, “Which Side Are You On” by Florence Reese will be performed in the final act and serve as the finale of the play, said Francisco. 

Wednesday, October 21st, 2015

“Because You Asked”

by Rebecca Jones


What are some tools I can use to help me study?


Logan Frizzell, sophomore, insists that flash cards are a great tool to use when studying for exams and quizzes.


“I use the colored flash cards because color helps you remember stuff better. When you see the color, it helps your brain connect whatever is on the card to what the color is,” said Frizzell.


With mid-terms wrapping up, students across campus are worrying about studying habits. Different methods of studying include studying as a group or with a study buddy or individually.


Frizzell prefers being alone in a quiet place, but will occasionally have her sister help when she needs it.


“One time in the car on the way to school, I handed my sister my flash cards and had her quiz me on the stack twice. I passed the test I was studying for with her help,” said Frizzell.


Studying is used when a student needs to learn material and score appropriately when tested on it. Flashcards are an exceptional study tool that Frizzell uses to increase her chances of passing exams.

Wednesday, October 21st, 2015

Add ons to the Student Recreation Center

by Cassidy Steadman


A newly built racquetball court and a newly equipped dance studio were recently added to Pellissippi’s Student Recreation Center.


Classes for both activities are available, along with archery, bowling, basketball, walking and others. A schedule for student accessibility is available under “Recreation” on the “Student Life” tab found on the website, the PSCC SLR mobile app, or at the front desk of the SRC building located on top of the hill behind the Bagwell Center for Media and Arts.


Elaine Armfield, the dance instructor for the last 13 years at Pellissippi, teaches ballet, jazz and modern dance. She earned her master’s degree in dancing from the University of Tennessee. “I have taught many years, and I love it,” said Armfield.


A dual enrollment student of Armfeild’s, Neeley Moore, has been involved with many different styles of dancing for 10 years. Moore says, “I love starting the day off with exercise. It’s a way for me to escape and for my mind to release any stress. Being a part of the class also makes me feel more involved.”

The 24,000-square-foot building that consists of a basketball court, weight room, tennis courts, fields, a volleyball court and other activities now includes a dance studio and will open a racquetball court in November.

Wednesday, October 21st, 2015

“She Kills Monsters”

by Brooke Wainwright


Pellissippi Students will be performing a play titled “She Kills Monsters” in November.


The play will be held at the Hardin Valley Campus on Nov. 13, 14, 20 and 21 at 7:30 p.m. as well as Nov. 15 and 22 at 2 p.m. The comedic drama written by young playwright Qui Nguyen tells the story about a girl who leaves her childhood home because of the death of her sister. She falls into an imaginary world filled with adventure after finding her sister’s Dungeons and Dragons notebook.


Pellissippi professor Charles Miller will be directing the play. “We are hoping to appeal especially to the ComicCon crowd,” stated Miller.


Tickets will be $8 for faculty, staff and students; $12 for adults and $10 for seniors and students from other schools.


Wednesday, October 21st, 2015

Huge HOPE Scholarship numbers

by: Lauren Wallace


Pellissippi State reported one of the largest numbers of students who received the Tennessee Hope Lottery Scholarship this year.


The Hope Lottery Scholarship is a great opportunity for students to get the majority of their college education paid for, said financial aid director Jordan Huetell. According to Huetell, 1,753 students at Pellissippi State received all or part of the Hope Scholarship. The number of students who earned the scholarship has jumped since previous years.  However, part of the rise is because of the vast number of students enrolled at Pellissippi State.


Hope Lottery Scholarship general requirements are deemed fairly simple:

-Students must have earned a 21 or higher on the ACT or have a cumulative GPA of 3.0.

-In order to maintain the scholarship a student must be enrolled in at least six hours and cannot stop attending a class.

-Although a large percentage of Pellissippi students have received the Hope Scholarship, Huetell said many lose their scholarship due to inability to keep up their GPA.


Wednesday, October 21st, 2015

Access And Diversity

by Stephen Marbury


Access and Diversity is a valuable academic support and degree completion program located in the Goins Building Room 162.  The Diversity Plan was developed by Pellissippi State Community College on the premise of increasing diversity among students, faculty, and staff. The primary focus of the plan is driven by the Complete College Tennessee Act of 2010 to increase the number of Tennesseans with post-secondary degrees.


The department is run by Gayle Woods now in her 26th year at Pellissippi State. Woods describes her work as a mentor and advisor.  As Director of Access and Diversity, Woods and her staff are focused on enhancing the educational, cultural and interpersonal experiences of low-income students, adult learners age 25 and older and underrepresented minorities.


Programs such as Pellissippi Adult Learners, or PAL, are intended for first-time freshmen who may have obstacles and challenges to overcome in order to meet their college needs. Students are assigned a faculty or staff mentor who will assist them through their first year of college.


Another program designed to increase graduation rates is Project Making Graduation Attainable. The program is aimed to help students who have earned 45-plus college-level credit hours toward their degree. So far, more than 192 students have successfully participated in PMGA since 2012.


As the program’s vision statement articulates, Access and Diversity celebrate individuals by affirming strengths, gifts and differences each faculty, staff and student brings to Pellissippi State Community College.  The staff maintains contact with students on a bi-weekly basis with its weekly mixers intended to allow students to network with others about classes, career prospects or a chance to relax after classes with fellow classmates.


Access and Diversity has continued to promote a diverse student body by celebrating various cultures from around the world.  Gayle Woods and her staff have supported numerous international themed events around campus, including a celebration of persons from Spain, Mexico and South America during Hispanic Heritage Month and a Caribbean Carnival where students experience food, music and dance. During Black History Month in February students and faculty are encouraged to taste African coffee and teas while discussing the contributions of African-Americans.

Wednesday, October 21st, 2015