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Local career-enhancing college classes offered
Second of a two-part series

West Knox County has more college presence than ever.

Educational opportunities for recent high school gradutates, as well as career veterans, abound at state-funded and private institutions. Opportunites at Pellissippi Technical Community College, Roane State Community College and South College were explored last week. This week, part two will look at three more local extensions.

Lincoln Memorial University opened its West Knox location at 140 Hayfield Road in 2002. The main campus of this private school is located in Harrogate.

The campus of about 100 students offers opportunities for recent high school graduates as well as working adults.

Kate Reagan, director of marketing and public relations for LMU, said the site has classes in business, education, nursing, and veterinary technology.

LMU offers a three-semester degree completion program, which will give students a K-8 teaching degree. Reagan said that often these students go on to earn an education specialists degree. A master’s of education is another option. Nurses who would like to finish a bachelor’s degree can take two courses to graduate.

Veterinary technology is another career path available. Reagan said that to graduate with a bachelor’s, students have to take some classes at the main campus in Harrogate.

"We will be adding management leadership starting next fall," Reagan said. Classes will meet one night a week.

"Lincoln Memorial University is committed to providing quality education opportunities and enhanced program access at all ten of its extended sites," Dr. J. Michael Clyburn, vice president for academic affairs and provost, said.

"The Hayfield Road location in West Knoxville continues to experience growth and impact students and communities throughout Knoxville and East Tennessee.

“Not only is it a primary center for our E-d-S, M-B-A, undergraduate business, undergraduate education, and post-baccalaureate education programs, but we will expand our service to adult learners in the Knoxville area this fall with the introduction of the conveniently-scheduled Management and Leadership Studies Degree Completion program," Clyburn said.

Tuition at LMU is $6,552 per semester for students taking 12-17 credit hours. The last day for registration was Jan. 17.

Tennessee Wesleyan College steps in where two-year colleges end. The private school, located at 9050 Executive Park Drive, takes students who have already completed two years or 64 credit hours of college.

“We’re the last two years. We are junior and senior level classes only,” said Nancy Brooks, director of the evening program for the TWC extension, which offers business administration and nursing programs.

“What we try to do is make it convenient for the working adult to get their degree,” Brooks said. Classes are held Monday through Thursday evening, beginning at 6 p.m. No classes are held on the weekend.

The business program has about 60 to 70 students in its evening classes. Students who complete the program will graduate with a bachelor’s degree in business administration with an emphasis in general management, human resource management, finance or accounting.

Brooks said students can choose between a traditional semester of one class for 15 weeks, or an accelerated semester of three different classes. Accelerated classes meet two nights a week for five-and-a-half weeks. Each class lasts for five weeks, so students only study for one class at a time. Brooks said this is a popular choice with adults who want to finish their degree quickly. Tuition for the business program is $285 per semester hour.

The nursing program has “a very competitive admissions process,” said Dr. Ruth Elliott.

Approximately 90 juniors and seniors are in the program, which begins each August. These students had to apply the previous January.

They will spend time getting clinical experience at local facilities, particularly Fort Sanders, Park West, Children’s Hospital and Knox County health departments.

“With the nursing shortage, we certainly want to respond to continuing need for nursing care in the Knoxville community by graduating higher numbers of qualified registered nurses,” Elliott said.

TWC also has a track for registered nurses who would like to complete a bachelor’s degree. Tuition for the nursing program is $1,403 per year, including clinical.

Tusculum College, at 9041 Executive Park Drive, is set up to meet the needs of working adults as well as college-aged students. Day, night and weekend classes are offered for two bachelor’s degrees: organizational management and teacher education.

The college also has two master’s programs in the same areas. The master’s in education can be specialized three ways: human resources development, K-12 teacher’s licensure and organizational training and education.

Tusculum has designed a program that sends students through in groups, with new groups being formed all the time.

“To my knowledge, we’re the only program in the area to provide the year-round delivery of instruction,” said Dr. Denise K. Wood, vice president for extended education.

Students are assigned an advisor, a full-time staff member with a master’s degree, who acts as a go-between for them and the college. The advisor takes care of all the enrollment details. Tests to assess the student’s ability, set up tutoring or allow the student to test out of classes are given at the Adult Learning Development Center.

“The concept is kind of like one-stop shopping,” Wood said. She said that most adult students are taking classes to better their chances for promotions at work.

“We have about one thousdand students,” Wood said. “In two-and-a-half years, we grew so rapidly, we’ve had to rent eight additional classrooms across the street in Centerpoint Plaza.”

A working adult who has no college credits can take weekend classes for approximately three to three-and-a-half years to become a certified teacher.

A bachelor’s degree in organizational management would take about three years’ worth of night and weekend classes for the person with no transferable college credit.

The main campus of Tusculum College is in Greeneville.


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