Friday, August 30, 2013

September Events at Vol State

Aug-Sept 26
Faculty Art Exhibit, Thigpen Library Gallery, 7am-9pm, Monday through Saturday, closed Sunday
Labor Day Holiday - Campus Closed
4, 5
Welcome Days, Library Lawn, 10am-2pm
Service Learning Club, first meeting, Wood Campus Center room 101, 12:45pm
Honors Lecture: The History of Comics, Tim Amyx, Nichols Dining Room, 12:20pm
"The Rise of the American Police State" Dr. Michael Lenz discussion, Nichols Dining Room,12:20pm
Kickball and soccer intramural orientation meetings, Wood Campus Center, first floor -next to Financial Aid, 3-4pm
Harvest Moon Soiree, scholarship fund raiser, $75, Epic Event Centre, 392 West Main Street, Gallatin, 6pm
Constitution Day event, Sponsored by Student Paralegal Association, Cafeteria, Noon
"I Have a Dream: The March on Washington, the Civil Rights Movement, and the Constitution" Grady Eades discussion, Rochelle Center, 12:45pm
17, 18
Health and Wellness Days, Nichols Dining Room, 10am to 2pm
Coffee with the Prez, student Q and A session with the President, Cafeteria, 10am-11am
19, 20
Books R Fun book sale, Wood Campus Center
Student showcase arts and crafts sale, Nichols Dining Room, Noon to 6pm
Vets Next Steps! career tips for military veterans, Rochelle Center of Thigpen Library,
Fall Job/Career, Pickel Field House, everyone invited,10am to 1pm
Sumner County College Night, Pickel Field House, free & open to the public, 6-8pm


Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Vol State in the News

The big fund raising push for the new Humanities building is underway. The Tennessean has a story showcasing the project and discussing how the building can help programs such as Entertainment Media Production. That program has already doubled the number of students this semester over what was projected. Exciting news all around.

Monday, August 26, 2013

First Day Pics

Whether it be the beautiful new West Campus area or the Duffer Plaza, it was near perfect weather and mainly smiles for the first day of classes at Vol State Gallatin Campus.

Dr. Faulkner: The First Day of School

I actually always liked the first day of school - even when I was in elementary school.  Don’t misunderstand, I enjoyed my summer vacation but there was a building excitement as the start of school approached. 

Maybe it had something to do with the fact that the start of school was one of only three times each year when we went into the big city of Knoxville.  Christmas shopping, a new Easter outfit, and new school clothes were the only forays into the city.  We would get a new pair of shoes, a few shirts and pairs of socks and five new pairs of Levi jeans.  Until they were washed a couple of times the denim was so heavy and stiff they would almost stand up alone.  Most years we also got a new notebook and a supply of paper, pencils and erasers.  Remember the Trapper Keeper notebook?

Once back in school there was a new teacher each year as I progressed through the grades.  Even in our small, rural community there was often a new student or two.  There was a new room, a new desk, and new books. And of course, we were reunited with friends that we had not seen all summer. 

Perhaps this love of education is why I ended up where I am.  But I know all of my classmates did not share my joy, just as not all of our new Vol State students will be so excited.  There may be lots of apprehension especially for those who are the first in their family to attend college.  Even those that have knowledgeable and supportive parents may be overwhelmed by all the new aspects of being a college student. 

During these first days of the semester, let’s be even more supportive of our students.  They don’t know what they don’t know and don’t know who to ask.  You can spot them.  You know that lost look on their face.  Let’s seek them out and help them solve their dilemmas so they can experience the excitement and joy of the first day of college.

-Dr. Jerry Faulkner

Wednesday, August 21, 2013

The Vol State Library folks have a book suggestion for you

People love to talk about books they are reading, so you can imagine the conversation if everyone was reading the same book. That’s the goal of a new program for Sumner County residents. Vol State is partnering with area public libraries in what is called One Book One Community. The selected book this year is “The Ballad of Frankie Silver” by Sharon McCrumb.

Here is the description of the novel from St. Martin’s publishing:

“In a little mountain cemetery in Mitchell County, North Carolina stand three graves—all belonging to the same man. Behind the legend of graves is the true story of Frankie Silver, an 18-year old frontier girl, hanged for murder in Burke County North Carolina in 1833, for a crime she might not have committed. This stirring tale of mountain justice is also a study of a frontier family, and of the contrasts between the mountain South of log cabins and trappers and the flat land South of plantations.”

“There are two settings for the book, 1830’s Virginia and 1970’s Tennessee. I think that makes it especially interesting for people,” said Louise Kelly, the director of the Vol State Thigpen Library. “Sharyn McCrumb shows the parallels between the two cases.”

Sharyn McCrumb is the author of several novels, including “The Rosewood Casket” and “She Walks These Hills.” Her books have been named Notable Books of the Year by the New York Times and the Los Angeles Times, and she has been honored for her contribution to Appalachian literature. 

The Vol State Library is leading the project and working with the public libraries of Gallatin, Hendersonville, Portland, Westmoreland and White House.

“Working with the libraries helps to get the entire county involved,” Kelly said. “The goal is to get more people reading and enjoying the fun of discussing what they read with friends and neighbors.”

One Book One Community will bring McCrumb to campus for an event in October. There will be more information about that event coming soon. A reading guide and other information about the community read can be found at

A Whole Lot of Hawaiian Color on Campus

We wouldn't normally say that Vol State is a loud place, but Wednesday was quite loud on campus, and in the Hawaiian sense of the word. The College Foundation held an Ugly Hawaiian shirt contest as part of their annual Grab and Go lunch for the campus. There were rather loud shirts all over campus. We hesitate to call Dr. Faulkner's shirt ugly in print (and in all fairness, it matched his black pants). It did look better on his wife, Wanda. However, we, and certainly folks in the Foundation, were more than happy to call ugly, well, ugly, with some other fashion choices.

Our pick for the ugliest shirt was not even Hawaiian:

Vol State All-Star Update

Steve Delabar has an All-Star moment in New York. Mark Cunningham/Getty Images.
In case you missed it this summer, former Vol State baseball player Steve Delabar is officially a Major League Baseball All-Star. The Toronto Blue Jays pitcher was voted in by fans in the final round for the 2013 American League All-Star team. Delabar pitched part of an inning in the All-Star Game at Citi Field in New York, securing a strike-out.

Vol State Baseball Coach, Mike Crossland, talked to Delabar just the other day.

"He said it was phenomenal. He was in the bullpen with Mariano Rivera (13-time All-Star and five-time World Series Champion) and talked to him for about 20 minutes. It was an unbelievable experience."

A few weeks later Delabar went on to pitch an immaculate inning, the first in Blue Jays history. An immaculate inning is nine pitches for three strike outs. Unfortunately, Steve went on the disabled list for the Blue Jays a couple of weeks ago and remains there today. However, the Blue Jays say it's just for right shoulder inflammation and they don't think it's serious.

"He expects to return in the next week or two," said Crossland. "He's been working with their minor league team in Florida."

The All-Star honor is well-deserved for Delabar and also a testament to the strength of the Vol State baseball program. Delabar has an incredible story of overcoming challenges.

Delabar pitched for the Vol State Pioneers eleven years ago. He blew out his elbow in the 2001-2002 baseball season and there were grave concerns about his major league hopes. In 2004, he finally made it to the San Diego Padre’s minor league team and spent the next five years working through his injury in single A ball.  The final straw came after he broke his elbow. Doctors wired it together using screws and a plate. Delabar left baseball and returned to his home of Elizabethtown, Kentucky.  He worked as a substitute teacher and coached baseball for the local high school.  All the while, he never stopped chasing the dream of pitching in the majors.

One day he had his opportunity. A scout came out to the Kentucky high school and watched the teacher throw. He returned to the majors with Seattle and has been pitching with Toronto for the last two seasons. 
Delabar plans a trip back to Vol State in October. Coach Crossland says he will be coming in to implement his strength and conditioning regiment with the Vol State players. Needless to say, the players are excited.

"Anytime that you can meet a big leaguer is special, and especially if it's a big leaguer who played here."

You may remember that the Vol State Pioneer baseball team went to the final round of the TCCAA Region Seven Tournament. We're excited to see what they can do in the upcoming season. Coach Crossland has high hopes.

"We've got a brand new team coming in. On paper we're really good," he said. "This is probably as much talent as we've ever had coming in."

Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Progress: Construction Updates

We'd like to welcome folks back to campus for the fall semester. Here are a few construction updates, in case you missed Convocation.

-Construction continues on the new Allied Health building. It is named the Wallace Health Sciences Complex and each building is then named North and South. The new building will be Wallace South and the old building Wallace North. The latest estimates still project move-in for programs in December for a Spring semester opening.

-The first artist renderings for the new Humanities building have been released. The college needs to raise $3 million for the project and the latest update is just over $1.6 million pledged thus far. Once the money is raised, and the state budgets the match, final plans will be developed and construction bids could go out as early as next summer. You can participate by visiting the Foundation Giving page. Every bit will help and smaller donations may make the difference.

Vol State in the News

A timely topic put the Tennessee Small Business Development Center at Vol State in website and newspaper stories across the state this week. Charles Alexander is putting on a session with the Heritage Financial Group about the new health care law, probably best known as ObamaCare. The meeting will be held on Thursday at 3 p.m. in the Nichols Dining Room of the Wood Campus Center. And here's a may have friends or family considering starting a small business or trying to grow a small business. Have them visit the TSBDC website and consider a class or meeting with Charles. Most of the advice is free or very cheap and it's open to small businesses across the area.

You may have seen the recent promotional push for Tennessee community colleges. Dr. Nichols has an editorial in the Tennessean this week that underscores the primary message: community colleges are a good value.

Vol State alum Steve Delabar is still enjoying his wild ride. The former Pioneer baseball player went to the MLB All-Star Game this year. Craig Harris with the Gallatin News Examiner has this story about his unlikely path to the majors and the role Vol State played in his success.

Vet tech is attracting attention for it's new director and it's first graduating class. Here's the latest from the Hendersonville section of the Tennessean.

Thursday, August 8, 2013

Impact Award Winners

Dr. Faulkner and Lori Johnson from the College Foundation are both winners of the Nashville Business Journal's 2013 Sumner County Impact Awards. The Nashville Business Journal and their Community Partner Comcast Business present the awards to honor “influential and powerful leaders in Sumner County.” In case you didn’t know, Lori is also the President of the Gallatin Chamber of Commerce this year.

The presentation was made at an awards luncheon last week. They are featured in a special section of the Business Journal, out now. Congrats to both!

The paper asked all of the award recipients what they thought was the biggest need for Sumner County, now and in the future. Here are the quotes.

A Big Donation for the Humanities Building

Dr. Faulkner accepts the check from Sumner Foundation chair, Reggie Mudd.
The whirlwind of fund raising for the new Vol State Humanities building continues and just recently the college had some big help. The Sumner Foundation, the former charitable wing of the old Sumner Regional Hospital, made a final distribution of funds to community organizations across Sumner County. The College Foundation received $300,000 for the Humanities building project. Meanwhile, dinners and events have been held to reach out to other potential donors. The project will do much for the arts and entertainment community, by providing better facilities for students and ultimately students with more experience when they get into the workforce. The additional classroom space will help many departments in Humanities. We have had great support for the fund raising effort from folks here on campus. No donation is too small to help. Visit the Foundation web page for details.