Friday, December 2, 2016

An Inside Look at the Christmas for the Kids Collection

Christmas for the Kids helps Vol State students and their families have a good holiday season. And it's not just presents for the kids, but also food boxes for families. The food collection is organized by the Employee Relations Committee. The Office of Student Life and Diversity Initiatives puts together the presents in conjunction with the Campus Activity Board, the SGA and many other student groups.
We had a sneak peak at the collection today and it's impressive. This room in Student Life is stacked full of presents for 78 kids this year. Down in Plant Operations Employee Relations Committee members spent the morning preparing 30 boxes of food that will be handed out tomorrow, with the presents, at the annual Christmas for the Kids party.

Thanks to everyone who contributed to the present and food drives.

Wednesday, November 30, 2016

Squatter's Rites Award

Congrats to Squatter's Rites student literary magazine for taking third place for the southern division of small colleges in the Community College Humanities Association college magazine contest. The award-winning publication is going through some changes this year- including a new name. You can vote for your favorite name of the finalists on the front page of the Vol State student blog.

Vol State in the News

The Governor has issued an editorial discussing how recent higher education grants help in the Drive to 55 initiative. He mentions the Vol State Math and Science projects. It's here in the Wilson Post.

The Tennessean recently ran our news release about the Med Lab Technology Program. It's interesting to see why we're attracting many students who already have bachelor's degrees to the program.

Monday, November 28, 2016

Holiday Concerts Friday and Saturday at 7:30pm

Music is a big part of the holiday season. Students at Volunteer State Community College will be presenting two nights of festive songs in a show titled “A Starry Night - An Evening of Christmas Favorites.” There will be choreographed performances from the Showstoppers, rock and roll from the Commercial Music Ensemble, and country musical renditions by the Bluegrass Ensemble, Bluegrass Ablaze. There will also be music by two new Vol State groups- the Guitar Ensemble and the Wind Ensemble. The event will highlight the wide-ranging talents of more than seventy-five students.
The concert includes a CD release of Vol State student work. This year’s CD will be for sale at the shows on December 2 and 3 in the Wemyss Auditorium in Caudill Hall on the Vol State campus at 1480 Nashville Pike in Gallatin. The show time is 7:30 p.m. each evening. A suggested donation of $5 benefits the Music Department Scholarship Fund. Admission and a copy of the Christmas CD are $10. For more information contact the Office of Humanities at 615-230-3202.
Pictured: Bluegrass Ablaze performs in the 2015 holiday concert. Photo by Tony Young.

Monday, November 21, 2016

Tennessee English Conference at Vol State

Vol State hosted the Two-Year College English Association of Tennessee (TYCAT) conference on November 11 and 12.  English professors from 10 of the 13 TBR community colleges were in attendance. 

This annual conference allows community college English professors across the state to share ideas, concerns, and pedagogical approaches with their colleagues.  This year’s conference was conducted in the style of “TED Talks” and made great use of the Performing Arts Studio in the new Steinhauer-Rogan-Black Humanities Building.  Ten of the 37 presenters were Vol State English Faculty, and they include: Emily Andrews, Cindy Chanin, Leslie LaChance, Betty Mandeville, Laura McClister, Ami Price, Catherine Randall, Cynthia Wyatt, Kevin Yeargin, and April Young. 

Vol State students from the Sigma Kappa Delta English Honor Society were also on hand to assist with registration and to listen in on some of the presentations. 

-Deb Moore

Vol State in the News

The Med Lab program was a recent Vol State program release. Here's a link to the story in the Tennessean.

Monday, November 14, 2016

Rad Tech Students Win Knowledge Bowl

Vol State Rad Tech students took first place in a competition of Radiologic Technology knowledge recently. It was part of the annual meeting of the Tennessee Society of Radiologic Technologists. They’re the professionals who perform x-rays and other radiographic imaging of patients in hospitals and clinics. Teams of four students from across Tennessee competed in a single elimination student bowl. There were a total of ten teams participating. The Vol State team of Leslie Williams, Chelsey Odum, Lindsey Bullock, and Meagan Foss won all four rounds of the competition, taking home first place. The students will graduate with their class in May of 2017.

Pictured: The winning Vol State team, left to right: Leslie Williams, Meagan Foss, Chelsey Odum, and Lindsey Bullock.

Vol State Food Drive

The Vol State Employee Relations Committee is sponsoring “FOOD DRIVE FOR THE FAMILIES” from November 9 – November 28. The goal is to fill the cupboards of families in our community during the holidays. Please place your nonperishable canned/ boxed foods in the wrapped boxes located in these buildings:

SRB 208
Mattox 101
Warf 100
Building 300
Rochelle Center Gallery
Wallace 102
Gibson Hall 106
Great Hall
Caudill 222
Wood 117

There has been an outpouring of donations in past years. Let’s fill those boxes!

Respiratory Care Week

During Respiratory Care Week the Vol State Respiratory Program students hosted an educational skills fair at a local clinical affiliate, NHC Sumner Place. Each of the students prepared different respiratory related booths. The students were able to educate over 100 of the facilities employees, residents, visitors, and volunteers. 

The service learning opportunity the skill fair provides for the students and the community is something to be excited about. Each person that participated in the skills fair gained solid knowledge of new, useful information on how to care for themselves, residents, or a loved one. The Vol State Respiratory Care Program will be hosting another skills fair in the spring. Keep your eyes out for the opportunity to stop by, learn and to participate in the neat activities.

-Mallory Higginbotham

Vol State in the News

The outsourcing of jobs is an issue at the state level. The question is whether state colleges and universities should have some maintenance and custodial work outsourced. Last week WSMV took a look at Vol State as it relates to outsourcing.

Tuesday, November 8, 2016

One Vote Matters: Carole Bucy on National Radio

Vol State History professor Carole Bucy recently took part in a Radiolab Podcast about the election and whether one vote really matters. Radiolab is produced by WNYC in New York and syndicated nationally on public radio stations. You can listen here. Carole's story comes in at 31 minutes. Carole explains the role of the state of Tennessee in the women's suffrage vote, the 19th amendment, and how one vote made all the difference. There's a little Jack Daniels involved and a very important Tennessee mama. It's an amazing story and a big part of Tennessee and American history. Check it's a fun listen, about 15 minutes long. We always like to hear a Vol State faculty member paired with a Harvard faculty member for expertise in the media.

Criminal Justice Parade

The Criminal Justice program showed off the teaching squad car in the Hendersonville Veterans Parade last weekend. They were joined by the Vol State Cheerleaders.

Monday, November 7, 2016

Dr. Faulkner: Regrets

Frank Sinatra famously crooned
Regrets, I've had a few;
But then again, too few to mention.
I did what I had to do
And saw it through without exemption.

I planned each charted course;
Each careful step along the byway,
And more, much more than this,
I did it my way.

What do you regret most in your life? 

A recent article in Inc. Magazine titled Science Says this is the Most Common Regret led me to an eleven year old article from the Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin (September 2005, 31: 1273-1285) by Roese and Summerville.  The article titled What we Regret Most . . . and Why examines 11 previously published studies and conducts two additional studies exploring people’s biggest regrets and what affects the degree of regret.   Their conclusion was that “Americans’ biggest regrets fall into the following life domains (in descending order of frequency): education, career, romance, parenting, self-improvement, and leisure.”  Thirty-two percent of Americans have a significant regret regarding education.  That is 10 points higher than the second regretful area of career.

The authors also posit that, “Opportunity breeds regret.  Feelings of dissatisfaction and disappointment are strongest where the chances for corrective reaction are clearest.”  Because education is so readily available in America, it is never too late to correct a past mistake.  Not taking advantage of the current opportunity compounds the regret for past action.

I don’t remember exactly who it was, but I distinctly remember a conversation I had when I was trying to make the decision to leave a very good job in order to return to finish my bachelor’s degree.  I’ve often repeat this exchange with potential adult students.  It goes something like this:
Counselor:  How long will it take you to finish your degree?
Me:  About two years.
Counselor:  And how old will you be when you finish your degree?
Me: Thirty –two.
Counselor:  And how old will you be in two years if you don’t pursue a degree?
Me:  Thirty-two.
Counselor:  And so you will be thirty-two and without a degree.

According to the hypothesis of the authors, I would be two years older and have twice as much regret.

Roese and Summerville conclude by offering three distinct stages at which opportunity affects regret.  “The three stages are action, outcome, and recall.”  In the action stage individuals engage in behaviors designed to achieve the desired outcome.  Regret is highest when it is clear that those actions have been freely chosen.  When the outcome is achieved, certainly positive outcomes rarely lead to regret but negative outcomes from freely chosen actions will evoke regret.  How the action and outcome is recalled also affects regret.

For our students, studying for a test is an action.  If the outcome of the test is good, they will recall the positive result and have little regret.  Too often what happens is if the outcome is negative, they try to shift the blame to indicate they did not have a freely chosen action.  (I had to work so I couldn’t study.)  And of course their recall of a situation is often skewed to try to assuage their regret.

We also need to keep these ideas in mind when counseling returning non-traditional students.  We should emphasize that their past action to not pursue education or to stop out doesn’t preclude them from correcting the action and having a positive outcome in the very near future.

So while career, and love life, and leisure may be areas of regret, education is one place where it is possible to correct the past and reduce regret.

-Dr. Jerry Faulkner

Vol State in the News

Channel 5 picked up on the TN Promise retention rate story. The gist is that TN promise students have a better retention rate at Vol State, and many other community colleges, than the general student population. Here is the story.

Friday, November 4, 2016

Healthier Workplace

Vol State has been renewed as a Healthier Tennessee Workplace by the Governor's Foundation for Health and Wellness. That's the result of the health initiatives we have had on campus this past year. Walk Across Sumner is the big one right now. We'll have more coming up!

Thursday, November 3, 2016

Remembering Budd Bishop

There are many words that come to mind to describe a champion.  Advocate, winner, leader, passionate, supportive, success, and dedicated are a few.  Budd Bishop was all of these and so much more. He was a champion for Volunteer State Community College at Livingston.
Budd Bishop, an accomplished artist, museum director, educator, author, community activist, and education advocate passed away on October 23, 2016.
Budd and his wife Julia were familiar faces at Vol State Livingston.  Immediately upon entering the building, a prominently displayed plaque that reads Budd Harris Bishop and Julia Crowder Bishop Lobby pays homage to the Bishops’ leadership and financial contributions to Vol State Livingston.
Budd’s love for education and Vol State Livingston goes back to 2004 when he and Julia became very involved with the campus.  The college had started a capital campaign to raise funds for a two-part building expansion, and Budd and Julia went to work.  They worked tirelessly raising funds, in addition to providing financial support from the start of the campaign to the completion of the second phase.
“I met Budd and Julia when I served as President of Vol State and visited the Livingston Campus,” said Warren Nichols, vice chancellor for community colleges for the Tennessee Board of Regents.  “Budd and Julia not only expressed a passion for helping students attend college but wanted the college to help promote a higher quality of life for the entire Livingston community.  Budd and Julia were not only among the first in the community to donate a significant amount of funds to support the expansion of the Livingston campus but became the primary organizers for soliciting community and individual supporters for Vol State.”

Both Bishops served on Vol State Livingston’s President’s Advisory Board since its inception.  “Budd’s caliber of leadership was on a national level,” Michael Powell, director of Vol State Livingston stated. 
Budd and Julia wanted to make education attainable for all and have been active in Vol State’s Foundation. They established the Budd and Julia Bishop Scholarships that annually award full tuition for two students to attend Vol State Livingston.  Budd delighted in hearing about the academic success of the scholarship recipients. 
Budd and Julia are members of the Hal R. Ramer Society for the Volunteer State College Foundation.  Because of their generous gifts, they have attained the Trustee Level.
“One of Budd’s great joys in life was his commitment for education,” said Greg McDonald, director of the Livingston-Overton County Chamber of Commerce.   “He was compassionate about helping under-served children obtain an education.  Budd and I were attending a reception when he approached me with his vision of developing a fund raising campaign to provide scholarships for local students to attend Vol State, and that discussion resulted in Vol E Ball.  Budd always displayed a high quality of excellence in his work as was evident at the Vol E Ball galas, which were outstanding.”

Vol E Ball became an annual gala that brought the community together in support of scholarships for Overton County residents to attend Vol State.  Budd led the committee’s fundraising efforts in securing individual and corporate sponsorships and contributions as well as selling tickets to the gala. Since the first Vol E Ball in 2011, net income of $120,000 has been deposited with the Vol State College Foundation, which administers the scholarships.
Further, Budd and Julia recognized the value of having a community college in Overton County and wanted to raise awareness and promote the college as the first college choice for students. Upon learning that eligible Livingston Academy (LA) High School students were unable to take Vol State Dual Enrollment classes due to a lack of funds, Budd and the Vol E Ball committee decided to allocate Vol E Ball scholarships to LA Dual Enrollment students in an initiative named Vol State First.  More than 200 students have received Vol State First scholarships.
“Budd was a kind, unassuming, personable, soft-spoken gentleman who knew how to get things done.”  Nichols added, “It was apparent from our conversations, and most importantly, from his actions, that Budd delivered on his promises.  The initiative and dedication he and Julia demonstrated by their many contributions, and the Vol E Ball event they produced that raised a substantial amount of scholarship dollars for Vol State will forever keep them in my fondest and grateful prayers.”
Budd was also civic minded and active in the community.  Praise of his contributions is echoed by many throughout Overton County.
“Budd and his wife Julia were the epitome of class.  When they ate out in town, they were always impeccably dressed, which I felt exemplified the respect that they had for each other and the community,” McDonald said.  “Budd was not from this area, but he loved this city.  One of his favorite hobbies was community involvement, and his donation of time and expertise to the community was remarkable.  Budd was working with the Downtown Revitalization Committee (DRC) on various projects including the new Central Park that is under construction.  He always put service before self and he was humble.  The committee wanted to name the new park the Bishop Park but Budd would not allow it.  He insisted that the park be named Central Park.”
Millard Oakley shared, “Budd Bishop was a valued friend and citizen of Livingston.  He was certainly civic minded and was the father of the Vol State event, Vol E Ball.  He devoted countless hours to Vol State and other endeavors locally.  A new park has been approved largely through the efforts of Budd and Julia Bishop.  He will be missed.”
Powell expressed his eternal gratitude for Budd’s great love for humanity, which extended to the farthest reaches. The highest praise he could offer is to say that Budd was a true friend.
Vol State President Jerry Faulkner summed it up, “Budd Bishop was a great supporter of Vol State and a great friend.  He recognized the value of education and wanted every citizen of Overton County to be able to take advantage of what Vol State offered in Livingston.  He was one of the most positive persons I have ever met.  He will be greatly missed.”  
Vol State Livingston has lost a champion and a best friend in Budd Bishop.  He will be forever remembered.
-Sherry Gabelman, Vol State Livingston

Monday, October 31, 2016

SRB Recording Studio at Work

The new recording studio in the SRB Humanities Building is wired to the choir room...which allows for remote recording. The hook-up includes video of the room and two-way communication. Just part of the great new technology in the SRB building. This is from a choir recording session this week.

Wednesday, October 26, 2016

Vol State in the News

People were interested in our steps to become more resource efficient here at Vol State. The Tennessean ran our news release about new solar panels at the college, as did Channel 4.

Nashville NPR, WPLN radio, had this story on Tennessee Promise retention.

An AT&T donation to student scholarships is in the Tennessean.

Friday, October 21, 2016

Solar and Recycling for Sustainability

You may have noticed a new addition to the Wood Campus Center. Solar panels have been mounted on top of the physical plant cooling stations. It's a project sponsored by the Campus Sustainability Committee utilizing campus sustainability fees. The four panels can produce 1,124 kilowatt hours a year. It's projected that will save 1.4 barrels of oil each year. Plant Operations will be placing a marker so students and visitors can see the solar panel stats.The energy goes directly into the Wood Campus Center power grid. The panels cost $6,686.

The Sustainability Committee has been actively using the fee money for campus improvements for some time now. Funds have been used to install energy-efficient LED lighting in the Fox Building and on the Highland Crest campus. The committee welcomes suggestions.

"We just approved a request for up to ten hydration stations for the other campuses and for Gallatin campus buildings that don't have one yet," said committee chair Keith Bell.

Those hydration stations encourage the re-use of drinking containers. Plastic water bottles are considered one of the biggest challenges to waste disposal, as use has soared in recent years. Industry consultant R.W. Beck, Inc. estimates that 40 million water bottles are put into landfills each day.

If you do drink water from plastic containers on campus you can recycle them. The Committee paid for the new recycling bins.

"The receptacles are made out of recycled materials themselves," said Plant Operations senior director Will Newman. 

But the committee members stress that they need your help when it comes to recycling.

"We need people to put only clean recyclables in the containers," Bell said. "That's the biggest thing we need- for people to follow the guidelines." Clean means dumping out the last of the Mountain Dew before tossing the can in recycling or washing out a plastic food container.

Another big environmental measure for the college was taking the resource efficiency steps needed to make the SRB Humanities Building LEED Certified. Part of that project  is the electric vehicle charging station across from Wallace North near the Thigpen Library. There are two power cords available for recharging electric cars. It's free and anyone can use it. It's first come, first served.

Future possibilities include solar umbrellas that would provide cell phone and laptop charging stations for students working outside at picnic tables. If you have a suggestion for the committee you can contact Keith Bell at

Dr. Faulkner: Know it All?

A recent newspaper article brought to my attention a quote from legendary basketball coach John Wooden.  “It’s what you learn after you know it all that counts.”

Two instances from my personal life resonate with this quote.  First as a teenager, I thought my parents were dumb as posts.  They weren’t hip, cool, or in touch.  I remember a high school speech I prepared that berated the older generation for being so ignorant of the current situation.   Not too many years following, I was amazed at how much my parents had learned and what great wisdom they had developed.

The second was something someone told me when I embarked on the journey to earn a doctorate.  I’ve long since forgotten who said it but the insight stayed with me.  They said, “Getting an advanced degree is choosing to remain ignorant about many subjects so you can learn a whole lot about one subject.”

Believing that we already know it all can cause us to miss out on so many new things.  Entrenched ideas sometimes cause us to dig in our heels and refuse to even try innovative developments in our work and home life.  And of course ego can cause us to be unwilling to admit that we might be unknowledgeable or even wrong.  (Remember what difficulty Fonzie had just saying the word.)

It is somewhat humbling to find out we don’t know it all but it is also liberating to anticipate each day as an opportunity to learn something new.  Now that you know it all, what more can you learn?

-Jerry Faulkner

Monday, October 17, 2016

Dr. Faulkner: That’s a Big 10-4 Good Buddy

I am writing this on October 4th.  This date used to be celebrated as National Citizens Band Radio Day.  Although the citizens band (CB) radio frequency was established in 1945, it did not become popular until the mid to late ‘70s.  In the ‘60s advances in solid state electronics allowed CB radios to become smaller and less expensive giving the public wider access.  Many people, including yours truly, had a CB radio in their car.  Until just recently I still owned an emergency CB that I kept in the trunk of my car.  Much of the use of CB radios in the early ‘70s was by truckers looking to evade speed traps that became prevalent after the national speed limit was changed to 55 mph.  A whole lingo developed for on air use and everyone who used CB had an on-air nickname or “handle.”  Then First Lady Betty Ford’s handle was First Mama.  There were popular novelty songs such as C.W. McCall's Convoy (I'm about to put the hammer down.”) and Kenny Price’s Let’s Truck Together (“You shake the trees and I’ll rake the leaves.”)  The CB radio played heavily in the movie Smokey and the Bandit.  In fact “Smokey” was CB language for a state trooper.  And who can forget the television show, The Dukes of Hazard?  You can still find CB radios and accessories for sale in truck stops.

Fast forward 40 years.  Almost everyone has a smart phone.  Over the last few years, technology has allowed phones to become smaller and less expensive and smarter.  Texting has developed its own lingo.  LOL, OMG, PIR.  Instead of a handle we have a hashtag.  And of course there is Twitter which is the 21st century equivalent of, “Breaker.  Breaker. Anyone got your ears on?”

There is probably a thesis or maybe even a dissertation in there somewhere, but for me the point is that people will communicate by what-ever means available.  Jargon and slang will develop and come and go and how we communicate will impact culture.  The important thing is that we keep communicating.

-Jerry Faulkner

What do you know about Lesotho and Malawi?

The Humphrey's Fellows from Peabody College at Vanderbilt University are back at Vol State this semester. The visiting international scholars program has brought educators from across the globe to Vol State for several years now through the International Education program. They are meeting with classes and recently held a reception to talk about their home countries.

Lineo Segoete spoke to students about Lesotho. It's one of only three remaining kingdoms in Africa.

"Isn't it pretty far south of the equator?" asked student Cameron Pugh.

"Yes, and the whole country is about two million people," Segoete replied.

Elizeo Joseph Odu of South Sudan explained that his relatively new country is still experiencing much unrest. When asked about the educational system there it becomes apparent why this program is so valuable to Vol State students, faculty and staff.

"The government doesn't have much money to pay for teachers," Odu said. "We have parent-teacher associations and they run the schools. We always work with the communities when it comes to the schools."

Those unique perspectives can help enlarge our perspective on education in other nations. In return, the Humphrey's Fellows learn about the American educational system.

"The teacher training and leadership information is quite interesting," Odu said. "Those are my primaries area of practice."

The Humphrey's Fellows come from eight different countries this year: South Sudan, Lesotho, Jamaica, Pakistan, Morocco, Russia, El Salvador, Venezuela, Malawi and Botswana. Vol State is an associate campus for the program. Look for more events later this year.

Vol State in the News

The Tennessean helps us announce our 2016-2016 President's Ambassadors.

They also have great pics from the Fall Fiesta at Vol State.

And the regular column by Charles Alexander of the Vol State TSBDC.

Monday, October 3, 2016

Andrew Dollar Hired as Special Assistant to Dr. Faulkner

Andrew Dollar of Hendersonville has been named Special Assistant for Strategic Initiatives. In the role he will work directly for President Faulkner. Dollar has spent the last five years as owner of FTP Coaching. He has experience in higher education with positions in the Technical College System of Georgia and executive office experience with the Georgia and Alabama governor’s offices

“Deep down I wish everyone worked for the government at one time or another,” Dollar said. “It’s an important part of daily life and certainly facing criticism, some of which is quite legitimate. But for me it’s about the ability to give back and make an impact in the world.”

Dollar has a Master of Public Administration degree from the University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill and a Bachelor of Art in English degree from the University of Southern Mississippi.

“My job will be to handle community related events and make sure people know what we can do for them, whether it be companies who want to locate here or government entities,” said Dollar.

EYH Girl's STEM Event a Success

Vol State hosted a fun day of hands-on science and math workshops and exploration on Saturday called “Expanding Your Horizons” (EYH). Girls in grades 6 through 8 enjoyed activities in chemistry, biology, math, health science, medical laboratory science, and cyber security. Organizer Lingli Ni said that 95 girls registered and 76 attended. More than 30 Vol State student volunteers and many faculty members made the event a success. There were guest speakers and workshops for the girls. Congrats to everyone who participated.

Meet the President’s Ambassadors

They have been working on campus, helping with events and giving tours for several weeks. But now we officially announce the new group of President’s Ambassadors for 2016-2017. Students selected for the President’s Ambassadors scholarship program go through a rigorous vetting and interview process.  Successful candidates are selected from over two thousand eligible students.  To be eligible for the program, students must have a cumulative 3.0 grade point average and have completed at least 12 college-level credit hours at Vol State.  The scholarship covers full tuition and fees at the in-state rate, as well as a $300 per semester book stipend.  Students selected serve a one-year term.

The 2016-2017 Vol State President’s Ambassadors from left to right: Back Row: Joey Looney, Buffalo Valley; Nicholas Crumble, Murfreesboro; Alex Hill, Lafayette; and Ian Flowers, Livingston. Front Row: Shannon Cherry, Red Boiling Springs; Diedre Miller, Gainesboro; Dallas Eidson, Cottontown; Marissa Edwards, Goodlettsville; Emily Williams, Westmoreland; Crystal Sloss, Gallatin; Rance Muirhead, Hartsville; and Pamela Lockhart, Hendersonville.

Monday, September 26, 2016

Benefits Fair Friday

A reminder: The Vol State annual Benefits Fair for employees will be held on Friday, September 30 between 10:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. in the Great Hall, Ramer Administration Building. Representatives from a variety of benefit plans will be available to answer questions and to provide updated benefits information. There will also be flu shots available. See the HR email for that form and details.

Friday, September 23, 2016

A Jazzy Opening for SRB

Jazz music and a festive New Orleans-style Second Line procession led students, faculty, donors and the public into the new Steinhauer-Rogan-Black (SRB) Humanities Building on Friday. Attendees crossed over the pedestrian bridge to the new building for the grand opening celebration, signifying a bridge to the future. Guests were treated to student music performances, demonstrations in the art rooms and a sample of award-winning Vol State student publications as they toured the building. Thanks to everyone who made the event possible and especially students and faculty for the lovely performances and demonstrations throughout the building. The talent of our students was the true highlight of the day!

Here are some more pictures from the event:

Monday, September 19, 2016

Dr. Faulkner: Lucky

Most of us know of Lou Gehrig because of the disease that bears his name.  The disease is more accurately know as Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS).  It is a fatal neuromuscular disease that causes muscle weakness leading to paralysis.

Gehrig was a star baseball player with the New York Yankees playing alongside greats like Babe Ruth and Joe DiMaggio.  He had a long an illustrious career winning many accolades and setting multiple records.  He held the record for most consecutive games played (2,130) until it was broken by Cal Ripkin Jr.  in 1995.  His playing streak came to an end in May of 1939.  Shortly after his last game, he was diagnosed with ALS.

Many know Lou Gehrig for the speech he delivered in July, 1939 when, in spite of ALS, he declared himself the “luckiest man on the face of the earth.”  But few know the full text of the speech and why Gehrig felt himself lucky even in the face of a fatal disease.  In short, Gehrig felt himself lucky not because of the fame and relative wealth that had come his way, but because of the people in his life.

Here is the full text of Gehrig’s speech taken from the Lou Gehrig web page.  

"Fans, for the past two weeks you have been reading about the bad break I got. Yet today I consider myself the luckiest man on the face of this earth. I have been in ballparks for seventeen years and have never received anything but kindness and encouragement from you fans." 

"Look at these grand men. Which of you wouldn't consider it the highlight of his career just to associate with them for even one day? Sure, I'm lucky. Who wouldn't consider it an honor to have known Jacob Ruppert? Also, the builder of baseball's greatest empire, Ed Barrow? To have spent six years with that wonderful little fellow, Miller Huggins? Then to have spent the next nine years with that outstanding leader, that smart student of psychology, the best manager in baseball today, Joe McCarthy? Sure, I'm lucky." 

"When the New York Giants, a team you would give your right arm to beat, and vice versa, sends you a gift - that's something. When everybody down to the groundskeepers and those boys in white coats remember you with trophies - that's something. When you have a wonderful mother-in-law who takes sides with you in squabbles with her own daughter - that's something. When you have a father and a mother who work all their lives so you can have an education and build your body - it's a blessing. When you have a wife who has been a tower of strength and shown more courage than you dreamed existed - that's the finest I know." 

"So I close in saying that I might have been given a bad break, but I've got an awful lot to live for."

- Lou Gehrig

Monday, September 12, 2016

You're Invited to Vol State Humanities Building Grand Opening

Students are raving about the new Steinhauer-Rogan-Black (SRB) Humanities Building. Now the public will get to see the three-story, 30 million dollar facility in person. Vol State is holding a grand opening event on Friday, September 23 from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. Everyone is invited to attend.

The SRB Humanities Building opened on the first day of classes for the fall semester. It is student focused in design- from comfortable and stylish study areas, to wide hallways and floor to ceiling windows. The entire building is wired for state-of-the-art classrooms, allowing for better connectivity and virtual collaboration. There is a new Performing Arts Studio that can house everything from plays to poetry readings. A new recording studio will more than triple the size of the other Vol State recording studio. Choral and music practice rooms provide for better instruction. The art studios include a dedicated printmaking room and a ceramics facility.

Guests will be able to view these areas during the open house. There will be heavy hors d’oeuvres for refreshments. The event will start with speakers promptly at 11 a.m. across from the new building in the Wood Campus Center, Mary Cole Nichols Dining Room. Attendees will then cross over the pedestrian bridge to the new SRB Humanities building as a group, signifying a bridge to the future. There is no registration required for the event. The Gallatin campus is located at 1480 Nashville Pike. For more information call 615-230-3571.

Pictured: The naming families in front of the new Steinhauer-Rogan-Black Humanities Building at Vol State. Left to right: Jane Steinhauer, Clara and Chet Rogan, and Diane and David Black.

Vol State in the News

There was much news coverage last week about the ITT Tech closure. Vol State has a initiative to help students, as much as possible, in issues of transfer and financial aid. Nashville TV stations ran that story and this is the Tennessean piece.

A Special Thanks to Plant Ops and IT

There are many people who have been working on the Steinhauer-Rogan-Black Humanities building for years. Getting the building designed and built required ton of work by deans, administrators and faculty members. However, getting the building ready for the first day of classes was also a major undertaking. Plant Operations folks moved Humanities faculty and offices and put the finishing touches on the building. IT had to install computers, check wiring and fix problems.

"Our team, especially Client Services, spent many hours transporting equipment in the hot summer sun to move faculty in, as well as worked long hours getting classrooms ready to go," said IT CIO Kevin Blankenship. "Jaret’s team: Jadson, Lynn, Les, Mike, Bill and Jacob were exceptionally dedicated to making sure we were ready to go, and the rest of the IT team from network to telecom pitched in throughout the summer. It was an awesome team effort and I can’t thank them enough."

The hard work continues as construction begins on Ramer Building renovations. Please take a moment and thank IT and Plant Ops folks for their dedication.