Thursday, October 25, 2012

Vol State in the News

Here's a nice plug for the mighty WVCP-FM, the Vol Stater radio station extraordinaire. Apparently they have a regular listener in Gallatin News Examiner General Manager Mike Towle:

Friday, October 19, 2012

Vol State in the News

A Vol State graduate is the new editor for the Gallatin News Examiner newspaper. Sarah Kingsbury is just one of many of Clay Scott's journalism students who work in the news media all over Tennessee and the nation. Congrats to Sarah on the promotion!

Vol State has been named an OSHA regional training site. Why is that a big deal? Check out the Tennessean for details:

The College is a partner is a new federal grant initiative in Robertson County. Our own grant manager Saranne Winfield helped to put together the half-million dollar Gear-Up grant proposal. It is designed to increase the number of low-income students seeking college degrees.

Thursday, October 18, 2012

Laura Black and the Complex World of Dr. Who

A wizard-like character with a wry sense of humor. The never-ending struggle between good and evil. A time-traveling police box. Those of you who enjoy science fiction probably already know what we are referencing. Dr. Who is an iconic British TV show that has picked up a legion of loyal fans across the globe. The show is at times camp and at others serious. And in all of it Vol State associate professor Laura Black sees a reflection of human society. She’s taking those observations to a special conference next year. She’ll be presenting a paper at the “Walking in Eternity” conference in England.
“I didn’t think it would have a great chance, because it’s an international conference,” Black said. “The people that will be attending are the same ones I am referencing in my paper. I’m excited to be asked and I’m excited to be able to be there during the 50th anniversary.”

Black points out that Dr. Who made its television debut in 1963, on the same day President Kennedy was assassinated. The show has become the longest running television series in the history of television. While it’s considered to be a children’s show in England, those young fans have grown up and the plot lines have grown more complex. That’s the focus and title of Black’s paper: “Unraveling the Complex Narrative of Doctor Who Series Six”.

“This kind of puzzle box narrative is growing more popular. The kids figured it out long before the older people.”

Black says that keeping up with the twists and turns in complex TV is aided by the technology we often use today – DVD and DVR.

“We’ve changed the way we watch television- we have binge watching where we watch an entire series uninterrupted.”

 For Black, dissecting a popular TV show is much more than just being a fan- it’s a way to examine society.

“TV is like any aspect of culture- it’s reflective of the time period. TV is like film and other popular media in that it holds a mirror up to the face of society. There’s a lot of reflecting back on World War Two in the show, which is very significant in British culture.”

Black is trying to decide between two very divergent paths for a dissertation as she works on her PhD in English at MTSU. One is the activism and literature of James Baldwin in the civil rights struggle. The other is inspired by that love of Dr. Who- the complex story lines of television.

Black traveled to England last year to participate in a class on Dr. Who and that gave her an inside view of the TV show. To find out more about Dr. Who and its close connection to British culture check out Laura’s blog on the significance of the Dr. Who Christmas special in England, featuring pictures from her trip:

November Calendar


Summit for a Sustainable Tennessee
by Tennessee Environmental Council
Nichols Dining Room 9am


Intercultural Conversation Group
Ramer 157 6pm


Studio voice recital, Nancy Slaughter students P-130 12:30-1:15


Debating the Draft panel discussion, Honors Lecture Series, Wemyss Auditorium 12:30pm


Music: A.N.T., Cafeteria


Homecoming Basketball Games
Pickel Fieldhouse 2pm and 4pm


Pecha Kucha and Around the World in a Day International Education Week celebration
Nichols Dining Room 12:30pm


Bluegrass Ensemble recital P-130 12:30-1:15


Music: Tropicante Cafeteria 12:30pm

Nov. 15-
Dec. 16

Miranda Herrick Art Exhibit, Ramer Great Hall 7am-9pm Monday through Saturday, closed Sunday


Free Movie "Presumed Guilty" Paralegal Student Association Nichols Dining Room 6pm


War on Drugs- Dr. Michael Lenz, Honors Lecture Series, Nichols Dining Room 12:30pm


Studio voice recital, Nancy Slaughter students
P-130 12:30-1:15

22, 23,24

Campus closed for holiday


Music Department recital P-130 12:30-1:15


Music: Svet, Cafeteria 12:30pm

30 and Dec. 1

Christmas at Vol State -seasonal music concert, Caudill Hall Wemyss Auditorium, 7:30pm, Suggested $5 donation for music scholarships

Friday, October 12, 2012

Vol State Hires New Allied Health Faculty

Help us welcome a new Allied Health director and clinical coordinator to Vol State.

Tom White, Jr. is the new director for the Medical Laboratory Technician program. He was previously Clinical Laboratory Manager at McConnell Air Force Base in Kansas. Prior to that, he was Education Program Director at McConnell. White has a Master of Science degree in Business Management from Southern Nazarene University in Oklahoma City. He received a Bachelor of Science degree in Occupational Education from Wayland Baptist University in Wichita Falls, Texas. He is licensed as a Medical Technologist (MT) and a Medical Laboratory Technician (MLT) through the American Society of Clinical Pathologists.

Tanya Terry has been hired as Clinical Coordinator for the Radiologic Technology Program at Vol State. She was previously Clinical Coordinator and Instructor for Keiser University in Miami. Prior to that, she was Clinical Coordinator, Clinical Supervisor and Instructor for the Professional Training Centers in Miami. She holds a Master of Science degree and a Bachelor of Science degree, both from Nova Southeastern University in Fort Lauderdale, Florida. She is a registered Radiologic Technologist.


Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Congrats to the Ophthalmic Program!

An accreditation review is no small matter- the work involved for program leaders is significant and needless to say the stakes couldn't be higher. That's why the announcement of a continuing accreditation award is a big deal. So, a big congrats to the Vol State Ophthalmic Program is in order. The Commission on Accreditation of Ophthalmic Medical Programs completed their review and continued the program accreditation through 2017.

It's been a busy year for Ophthalmic Director Alisha Cornish and the students. They traveled to Guatemala, as they have for several years now, to provide eye screenings and match eyeglasses for children and adults. They also conducted free vision screenings for the community at the Vol State Hispanic Fiesta.

Honoring Jackie Wilkerson: Alumnus and Longtime College Supporter

Jackie Wilkerson spent his career serving others through Emergency Medical Services (EMS). He also served the community by founding and leading the Vol State EMS Advisory Committee for more than 20 years. That board provides the professional insight and guidance needed to keep the Vol State academic program up to standards and on the cutting edge of medical care. Wilkerson passed away in June. Recently, the Vol State EMS Advisory Committee honored Wilkerson and thanked his family for those many years of service. They presented his family with a plaque in an emotional ceremony at the college.

Wilkerson was a Springfield resident and a Vol State graduate, with an Allied Health associate of applied science degree. He was the Director of Robertson County EMS for over 20 year and had most recently served as the Assistant Director of the Tennessee Office of EMS. Wilkerson is survived by his wife Jane, daughter Jana, and son Jason.

Pictured: Chief Doug McQuary of the Vol State EMS Advisory Committee presents the plaque to the Wilkerson family. Left to right: Robert Davis, Vol State EMS director, Jenny Wilkerson, Jason Wilkerson, Faye Hankins, Jane Wilkerson, Chief Doug McQuary, Jana Tolleson, Taylor Tolleson and Jerry Faulkner, Vol State president.



Thursday, October 4, 2012

Vol State in the News

Vol State Livingston associate professor Scott McMillan has put together a proposal arguing the adjuncts should have a better career path...if we want to improve retention. Check out the latest article in this proposal in the Community College Times:

Tuesday, October 2, 2012

A Major Remodel for the Library is Underway

Second floor renovation
Library Director Louise Kelley has been having some odd dreams. Perhaps it's something every librarian worries about - the stacks of books crashing to the ground and landing in a big heap of disorder. But Kelly has a particular reason to be concerned- those Vol State stacks will soon be doing a dance of sort on the second floor of the library. It's all part of extreme library makeover, as Thigpen becomes home to the new Learning Commons.

The process started months ago.

"We withdrew 14,000 books from our collection," Kelly said. "These were books that needed to be withdrawn due to out of date information and wear."

Carpet removed on the second floor
The renovation has already begun on the second floor. Crews have moved the furniture downstairs to the Rochelle Center for storage. Now the carpeting is coming up. Soon, demolition will start on walls as second floor rooms are reconfigured. The second floor work will culminate with a library book ballet of sorts.

"They're bringing in library movers to move each shelf as one entire unit," Kelly said.

"We have 48,000 books left and with that many we can't just push them to one side of the room," said John Mouvery, director of Facilities. "We have to do a series of three moves, carefully choreographed."

The goal is to install new carpeting throughout the second floor and reposition the stacks.

Part of the new Learning Commons location
With that done, the library staff will move up to the second floor and work will begin on the first floor. That demolition and construction downstairs will be more extensive. The walls of the left hand side of the first floor will be removed (as you walk in from the lobby), along with the Thigpen classrooms. The new Learning Commons will be constructed in that area. The process will mean a series of temporary moves for library materials. But Kelly says they are making sure that students, faculty and staff will be able to access what they need, however she adds that books may have to be retrieved by a library staff person.

The Rochelle Center
The big question is, of course, noise. Librarians like it nice and quiet and unfortunately there will be some noise. Library staff will be working with Facilities to minimize the disruption. It is hoped that moving operations from floor to floor will help.

The project is expected to be finished in the early part of the spring semester. When it's done this will be the new configuration of the library:

First floor: circulation desk, student use computers (same number as now), library staff offices and the Learning Commons.

Second floor: research center, reference collection, periodicals, copiers and a silent study room.

Final plans for the first floor
What will be gained? The Learning Commons will have much more room and an expansion of computers from 120 currently to 200 terminals. The room is being designed with learning and teaching in mind. It should provide a comfortable home for Learning Support classes and other functions for years to come.

In the meantime, Kelly is taking some comfort in the knowledge that those stacks of books will be moved by professional library movers. That should prevent the librarian nightmare from becoming a reality.

You can click on the "Final plans for the first floor" picture above for a much larger version. For details on the 60,000 ebooks that are available and other services to help faculty and staff through the process, please visit the Library web page.

Monday, October 1, 2012

Get Ready for Pioneer Hoops!

The basketball season is just around the corner. The regular season kicks off at home with the Vestle "Pops" Hudson Classic on November 2 and 3. The men's team held a media day and practice for fans recently. Observers say this is one of the best men's teams in many years.

"We've got one of the best big men in the country," said Coach Rusty Melvin. "Barry Robertson is in the top 100 for JuCo (Junior Colleges). Overall, this is probably the biggest team we've ever had. We have seven players over six foot six. We're just deep. Probably one of our best strengths will be rebounds."

Meanwhile, the Vol State Lady Pioneers are also getting ready for a big season. They kick off the season with the men on November 2 and 3. Many of the home games have both men and women's teams playing you can get plenty of hoops action at one time.

Games are free for Vol State students, faculty, staff and alumni. It's just $5 for members of the public. We suggest you print up this season schedule and put it up in the office or on the fridge. We hope to see you out there this season to root on the Pioneers to victory!

Vol State in the News

Vol State has been named an official OSHA Training Institute Education Center. Check out the story on the Occupational Health and Safety website: