Archive for November, 2015

Grants and Scholarships at Pellissippi State

Grants and Scholarships at Pellissippi State

Pellissippi Students will see help with the cost of their education through grants and scholarships.


Federal grants and many scholarships are offered for college students in order for them to be able to attend college without the constant worry of money being an issue. Although many students are uninformed of these opportunities. This is why some financial aid directors want to set up reminders to make students more aware.

Financial Aid Director Jordan Huetell said, “A federal Pell Grant is a federal aid program designed to provide financial assistance to those who need it to attend post-high school educational institutions.” Many students at Pellissippi receive this grant because the only requirement is to complete a FAFSA.

Huetell says, “The Pell Grant gives students a higher chance of attending college and earning their degree because it is awarded for 12 full-time semesters or until a bachelor’s degree is achieved.”

Although federal grants are easily awarded, students are not taking the time to fill out scholarship applications to make school more affordable, says Huetell. For example, with the Edscholar Scholarship one can earn up to $2,250 for the academic year. Huetell says, “This scholarship focuses primarily on expanding access to higher education for qualified post-secondary students in Tennessee.”

Eligibility requirements include:

  • Enroll in a degree program at Pellissippi State
  • Be a Tennessee resident
  • Have a 3.25 GPA for seven semesters or ACT composite score of 23
  • Demonstrate financial need according to the FAFSA
  • Show community service and leadership
  • Meet college standards of admission


Overall, Huetell says that it is extremely important for students to do their research and realize that there are so many scholarships available to make college more affordable. He also stresses that advisors need to go over all of the scholarship opportunities with first-time college students as well.

Monday, November 30th, 2015

TN Transfer Pathway

TN transfer pathways to the University of Tennessee give students a clear plan for their college future.


The new Tennessee transfer pathway gives assurance to aspiring University of Tennessee of Knoxville students that they are making the most efficient use of their time at Pellissippi State.  It guarantees students transfer credits to the University, said student advisor, Allen Smith.


The need for a more specific course guide was necessary because faculties update their priorities over time.  It was in Pellissippi State’s best interest that students were not taking inadequate classes for their desired college, said Smith.


The Tennessee Board of Regions and the University of Tennessee work in conjunction to accommodate transfer students, thus providing Pellissippi State the most accurate information for transfer students, said Smith.  Transfer students now have a much decreased risk of taking classes they do not need.

Monday, November 30th, 2015

“Because You Asked…”

What music related scholarships are offered by PSCC and why?

PSCC offers a variety of music scholarships to allow students who are musically talented the opportunity to attend college.
Larry Vincent, an associate professor of music, said, “Music scholarships are offered to help students with the cost of attending school, and to reward them for their talent and service to the college.”
One scholarship, called the Music Service Scholarship, is different from other scholarships because an audition must be given for the ensembles.
“Other music scholarships are either endowed or awarded from the music scholarship fund, which raises money from faculty, staff, students and members of the community,” said Vincent.
The service scholarship is provided by the Pellissippi State Foundation. Its Website states “The Foundation helps promote excellence for the College by securing financial support for special educational and cultural activities, as well as for ongoing operational expenses.” (
“The generous scholarships provided by PSCC and individuals who value the importance of music as a part of a well-rounded education will ensure that future students will have these invaluable opportunities afforded to them,” said Vincent.
The music program allows the college to be a part of the Knoxville area by performing for cultural events, said Vincent. It even expands to other parts of the world, such as South America, as the program will travel there this coming spring.

Monday, November 30th, 2015

Free Stress Relief Massages

By Cassidy Steadman


Finals week can build up great stress, but students can be relieved with free chair massages at the SRC.


The Student Recreation Center offers free massages during finals week on Monday and Tuesday Dec, 7 and 8 at 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.


AtWorkMassage is a certified massage therapy group that is offering to set up at the Student Recreation Center and give free chair massages “to relieve stress and enjoy a five-to-10 minute massage,” said director Phillip Ems. He encourages students to


Ems said there have only been positive feedbacks from students who have received massages at the end of previous semesters. He said, “Everyone has really enjoyed it and has said it is a game changer.”


So why go to the mall and pay for the same type of massage that you can receive at school for free?

Monday, November 30th, 2015

Student Loans

By: Lauren Wallace


Student Loans seem to be causing students a major debt.


An elevating number of Pellissippi State students have been taking out student loans without realizing that the cons outweigh the pros.


There has been a slight rise in the amount of student loans taken by students, says Financial Aid Director Melanie Mcammon. Although Mcammon agrees that loans for students who do not qualify for grants or scholarships are necessary, the consequences can be detrimental. Mcammon says the biggest issue she has seen is students taking out a loan for easy money, and then forgetting that they even have to pay it back.

In order to be eligible for a federal student loan the student must:

  • Submit a FAFSA
  • Maintain satisfactory academic progress standards
  • Be degree-seeking
  • Enroll/attend at least six credit hours per semester


One of Mcammon’s worries is that students are not thinking long term. The two federal loans, a subsidized direct loan and an unsubsidized direct loan, both have an interest rate of 4.29% according to the Federal Student Aid Website. [] Even though that is a very low interest rate students are not realizing how much debt they are racking up.


Overall, Mcammon stated that she wishes students would do their research and realize how to take out student loans the right way, because the program is great when it works as it was designed.

Wednesday, November 11th, 2015

Generous donors help with education

The lives of Pellissippi State students are improved by the help of generous donors.


When Pellissippi State Community College was officially charted as a non-profit organization in 1982, the risk of keeping the school up and running became a hassle. The only way the college was guaranteed survival was by the help of generous donors.


Pellissippi State is being governed and successfully operated by a board of representatives, volutneers, donors, and community leaders. With the help of giving opportunities as one of the leading factors implemented at the college, generous people from around the community are able to give and support the school as well as the students.


The college offers 4 different types of giving opportunities all in which give back to the college. donors have the freedom to choose who and what they want their money to go to.


If a person decides to give a donation, Pellissippi State will recognize that individual in a pyramid system identified as a society. If any donations is given between July 1 – July 30th of the year, the donor will be identified as one of the following in the Pellissippi Circle depending on the amount donated: Governor $25 thousand and above; Chancellor $ 10,000 – $24,000; President $5,000 _ $9999; Dean $1,000 – $4,999; Educator $500 – $999; Scholar $100 – $499; Friend $1- $99.


As far as anybody who decides to donate $10,000 or greater, recognition will be given to those individuals’ under the Pellissippi Guild society. Regardless of the amount donated, all donors are grandly appreciated by the student body, especially  for giving them a chance to pursue an education to excel in life.

Wednesday, November 11th, 2015

Volunteers Wanted

by Janelle Piper


Mentors needed for Tennessee Promise students.


Volunteers are needed for the Tennessee Promise program.


Tennessee Achieves is seeking out volunteers to become mentors for high school seniors. The mentor will be helping students navigate the college admissions process to ensure they fulfill the requirements in order to receive the Tennessee Promise scholarship.


“This is a wonderful opportunity to make a difference in the life of a student,” said Pellissippi State President Anthony Wise. Mentors will be encouragers and resources says Wise.


Those who want to invest 10-15 hours annually assisting five to10 high school seniors can apply at

  • Applications must be completed by Nov. 20.
  • Mentors must be at least 21 years old.
  • Applicants will be subject to a background check.

Monday, November 9th, 2015

Breiner providing safety

Pellisippi Security Director at Fred Breiner explains safety drills.


I talked with the director of security Fred Breiner about safety drills and the requirements at Pellissippi.



Breiner said that even though the school is only required to hold one drill a year, he plans for three a semester this includes one of each type, a fire drill, tornado drill and lockdown drill.



While he said there have not been any recent changes to any of the safety drills at Pellissippi, a lot of time and scheduling goes into the planning drills. Breiner said the scheduling process is very involved in order to avoid interference with classes.



Briener said safety drills are most effective when between one and three are planned a semester, and that Pellissippi is on the high end of that.



Breiner suggested that students be aware of their surroundings and be familiar with all the exits in the buildings you use. In the event of an emergency, some exits and stairwells may not be accessible. And in the event of a tornado, the safest place to be is the innermost, lowest place away from windows and doors.



He said that you are more likely to be a target if you seem like you are not aware of what is going on around you, or if you are looking down at your phone.

Saturday, November 7th, 2015

“Because You Asked…”

Why does Pellissippi play mtvU all the time?

The program mtvU has been a rallying topic among students who will visit the cafeteria or student lounge for numerous reasons.

MtvU was voted by students. Aaron Overall, academic advisor, stated that the TV sets playing the program were placed in the cafeteria and student lounge because they are not considered designated study zones.

Viacom is the parent company of MTV that teamed up with Pellissippi for a three-year contract. It voted by the students, too. They provided the two TV sets, satellite dish, and the system for free when contract was signed in 2014, said Overall.

Overall stated that because of the contract, the TV volumes are set at a specific volume and cannot be changed. Even if someone tried to change it, a lock setting on the volume would prevent it.

“MtvU allows us to program four PSCC announcements per hour, features ABC news at the bottom of every hour, plays public service announcements specific to college students, and also features up-and-coming independent/main stream artists,” said Overall.

In an attempt to please most of the student body’s music tastes, all kinds of genres are played on mtvU. Overall said it would “entertain the listener while broadening their musical experience” by playing all kinds of music.

Saturday, November 7th, 2015

Catch the Zumba fever

By Cassidy Steadman

To Zumba instructor. Kristen Stratton, the group fitness program is “cardio in disguise.”

A Zumba class is available every Wednesday at 4:30 in the studio at the Student Recreation Center.

A theme of Latin American-inspired dancing “brings students and faculty members together for aerobic fitness while having a fun time,” says Stratton. Instead of stressing about school during a break of classes, everyone is welcome to relieve stress and gain exercise in Kristen Stratton’s Zumba class.

Stratton is a two-year certified Zumba instructor and a Pellissippi student who takes time out of her day to provide others with a healthy and fun way to obtain a second wind beneficial to finishing a long day at work.

Although an instructor for two years, she has danced to the rhythm of the world’s music for four years.  While incorporating hip-hop, salsa and mambo, the choreography of the group fitness program is an upbeat dance style.

“There was a Zumba class last year, but I hadn’t heard about it starting up so I wanted to continue with it,” says Stratton. She says she comes off as a shy person, but Zumba “provides a different mindset” and allows her to express herself.

Saturday, November 7th, 2015