Motlow selects Coffey as student advocate award nominee

Motlow College recently nominated Assistant Professor of Geography Charle Coffey for the Outstanding First-Year Student Advocate Award. (Photo Credit: Motlow State)

LOCAL NEWS — Each year college presidents from around the U.S. nominate one educator to the National Resource Center for Outstanding First-Year Student Advocate Award. In 2020, Motlow State has selected Assistant Professor of Geography Charle Coffey.

Coffey leads Motlow’s First-Year Experience success as a component of the College’s Quality Enhancement Plan (QEP). Critical Thinking in the First-Year Experience is a QEP that reaches a significant number of Motlow students through the MSCC 1300 course designed to empower students to reach their educational and career goals.

“Having a profound understanding of community college students, barriers, and challenges, Charle transformed the Motlow First-Year Experience curriculum into a living, dynamic, interactive, and meaningful class that is practical, portable, and profitable for students as well as the faculty,” said Motlow President Dr. Michael Torrence. “She developed a curriculum and syllabi that integrates core skills: critical thinking, writing, reading growth, resilience, intelligence, and tenacity. The class is offered both on-ground and virtually to support varied schedules.”

Coffey has worked at Motlow since 1983 in multiple capacities and roles, including Director of Admissions, Director of Public Relations and Marketing, Director of Academic Services, and Director of the Education Department. Coffey earned her associate degree from Walters State, a B.B.A. and M.Ed. from MTSU, and is a Certified Covey Facilitator.

“I believe in our students and in providing resources to enable them to be successful,” said Coffey. “FYE is definitely that type of resource. This program provides foundational information and skill-building activities to help students hone critical thinking skills that will follow them through college courses and into life beyond college. I believe in the validity of this program, and I am honored to be nominated for this award.”

Two winners from two year colleges will be chosen by a selection committee composed of members and former members of the National Advisory Board of the National Resource Center, past Outstanding First-Year Student Advocates, and other leaders in American higher education. •

{The Lynchburg Times is the only independently owned and operated newspaper in Lynchburg, Tennessee. We cover Metro Moore County government, Jack Daniel’s Distillery, Nearest Green Distillery, Tims Ford State Park, Motlow State Community College, Moore County High School, Moore County Middle School, Lynchburg Elementary, Raider Sports, plus regional and state news.}

Motlow State focused on veterans and active military families

Motlow College reminds Moore County veterans and active duty military that they offer tuition free options to develop a career after the military. (File Photo)

EDUCATION — For many vets and active military, the what’s next question looms as they return home to normal routines and familiar places. On Veterans’ Day, Motlow State reminds local military families that they are here to help transition by offering opportunities to earn certificates and associate degrees with full veteran benefits.

High-wage, high-demand fields like Entrepreneurship, Robotics, Supply Chain Management, and Cyber Defense are extremely popular with veterans and the military. Each is designed to place graduates into the workforce after two years of instruction. Certificate programs such as Emergency Medical Technician, Advanced Emergency Medical Technician, Paramedic, and Early Childhood Education can be earned in less time than a traditional college degree and prepare graduates for the workforce.

Tennessee Reconnect is very popular, providing tuition-free college for adults 25 and older without college degrees. Motlow’s Office of Veterans and Military Affairs assists veterans, active military, and eligible disabled veterans and their dependents in requesting educational assistance from the Department of Veterans Affairs. For more information, contact Motlow’s Office of Veterans and Military Affairs at 931-393-1529 or email veteranservices@mscc.edu. •

{The Lynchburg Times is the only independently owned and operated newspaper in Lynchburg, Tennessee. We cover Metro Moore County government, Jack Daniel’s Distillery, Nearest Green Distillery, Tims Ford State Park, Motlow State Community College, Moore County High School, Moore County Middle School, Lynchburg Elementary, Raider Sports, plus regional and state news.}

Motlow develops new apprenticeship pathways

Motlow College recently announced three new apprenticeship opportunities coming for those interested in developing a career in the nursery industry, robotics and automation industry, and municipal water treatment. (File Photo)

EDUCATION — Apprenticeships provide an express lane to stable, high paying jobs. According to the U.S. Department of Labor, 94 percent of workers who complete an apprenticeship program retain employment with an average annual salary of $70,000.

Motlow College recently announced three new apprenticeship opportunities coming for those interested in developing a career in the nursery industry, robotics and automation industry, and municipal water treatment. Motlow staff developed the apprenticeships by focusing on its 11-county area’s specific needs. The new apprenticeships were announced this week in conjunction with National Apprenticeship Week, which happens annually on November 8-14.

Apprenticeships offer an alternative to traditional college degrees and certifications where employers can develop and prepare their future workforce. Individuals can obtain paid work experience, classroom instruction, and a nationally-recognized, portable credential. Apprenticeship is a proven training program used to recruit, train, and retain world-class talent, and each program is registered and validated by the U.S. Department of Labor.

Motlow will use local workforce development funds and grant funds to work with agriculture industry partners throughout Warren County to develop that program. Apprentices will complete 2,000 hours of on-the-job training and 200 hours of classroom instruction.

The Municipal Water Treatment apprenticeship is being developed in cooperation with the Tennessee Association of Utility Districts. The program is still in the development stages, and municipal water treatment plants throughout the service area are encouraged to consider joining the apprenticeship program once details are finalized.

Automation and Robotics apprenticeship will offer participants a unique opportunity, acquiring a portion of their on-the-job training component while also completing their classroom requirements at the Automation & Robotics Training Center in McMinnville.

Motlow invites any industry interested in partnering to create other apprenticeship opportunities to reach out by emailing motlowtrained@mscc.edu. •

{The Lynchburg Times is the only independently owned and operated newspaper in Lynchburg, Tennessee. We cover Metro Moore County government, Jack Daniel’s Distillery, Nearest Green Distillery, Tims Ford State Park, Motlow State Community College, Moore County High School, Moore County Middle School, Lynchburg Elementary, Raider Sports, plus regional and state news.}

WIRED: Motlow increases student access to WiFi

Motlow’s Moore County campus expanded student Wi-Fi access to the parking lot on both sides of the Marcum Technology Center. (File Photo)

EDUCATION | The Washington Post reported this month that record numbers of low-income students are dropping out of college due to a lack of access to good Wi-Fi, stating, “As the fall semester gets into full swing in the midst of the coronavirus pandemic, schools are noticing a concerning trend: Low-income students are the most likely to drop out or not enroll at all, raising fears that they might never get a college degree.”

Motlow State plans to address the trend by increasing their student’s access to free, public Wi-Fi. Motlow’s Moore County campus expanded student Wi-Fi access to the parking lot on both sides of the Marcum Technology Center. Students who do not have access to Wi-Fi are encouraged to come to the campus, remain in their parked car, and use the free Motlow Wi-Fi by signing in with their email username and password.

They also added a physical paperwork drop box on its Moore County’s campus to to drop off paperwork related to admission applications, class registrations, and financial aid. The Dropbox is not available for individual class items such as writing assignments and homework.

Motlow Drop Box
They also added a physical paperwork drop box on its Moore County’s campus to to drop off paperwork related to admission applications, class registrations, and financial aid. (Photo Provided)

“We are thrilled to offer these new avenues for students to communicate with the College and with each other,” said Scott Shasteen, director of communications. “Motlow’s continuous focus on student success is strengthened by these evolving strategies. If one student in our Moore County area drops out because of a lack of internet access, then it is highly unlikely they will ever return to College. We can’t let that happen.”

Some 100,000 fewer high school seniors completed financial aid applications to attend College this year, according to a National College Attainment Network analysis of Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) data through August. Students from families with incomes under $75,000 are nearly twice as likely to say they “canceled all plans” to take classes this fall as students from families with incomes over $100,000, according to a U.S. Census Bureau survey in late August.

At Motlow, we want the story to be different,” said Terri Bryson, vice president of External Affairs.  “Student success is our mission. Every student needs to be a success story. We want to ensure that everyone can access Wi-Fi and can drop documents off at our campuses 24/7.” •

{The Lynchburg Times is the only independently owned and operated newspaper in Lynchburg, Tennessee. We cover Metro Moore County government, Jack Daniel’s Distillery, Nearest Green Distillery, Tims Ford State Park, Motlow State Community College, Moore County High School, Moore County Middle School, Lynchburg Elementary, Raider Sports, plus regional and state news.}

Motlow, TCAT partner to make student transfers easier

Motlow Murfreesboro Vice President Dr. Echelle Eady, TCAT Murfreesboro President Dr. Carol Puryear, and Motlow State President Dr. Michael Torrence sign an articulation agreement that will make student tranfers easier. {Photo Provided}

LOCAL NEWS — Motlow State Community College and Tennessee College of Applied Technology (TCAT) –Murfreesboro recently announced a partnership that will create a smooth transfer process for students studying nursing, cyber defense, business office, and mechatronics.

The articulation agreement between the schools will facilitate the transfer of TCAT – Murfreesboro students to Motlow; provide specific advisement for TCAT – Murfreesboro students who intend to transfer to Motlow; and, encourage academic and administrative coordination between the institutions. Transfer students from TCAT – Murfreesboro to Motlow may also receive credit for prior learning and certifications.

“This partnership provides expanded opportunities for students in Rutherford County and surrounding areas,” said Scott Shasteen, Motlow communications director. “Motlow nursing, cyber defense, business office, and mechatronics graduates enjoy high placement rates in high-demand, high-wage occupations.”

In particular TCAT – Murfreesbor LPN graduates will able to more easily transition into the Motlow LPN-RN program.

Students wishing to transfer credits to Motlow must meet the admissions requirements, and Motlow reserves the right to reject any student’s admission in accordance with its standard policies and procedures. Transfer students from TCAT-Murfreesboro will provide an official transcript of completed courses to Motlow.

For more information, visit the Motlow College website by clicking here. •

{The Lynchburg Times is an independently owned and operated newspaper that publishes new stories every morning. Covering Metro Moore County government, Jack Daniel’s Distillery, Nearest Green Distillery, Tims Ford State Park, Motlow State Community College, Moore County High School, Moore County Middle School, Lynchburg Elementary, Raider Sports, plus regional and state news.}

Motlow College president named to national board

Motlow State President Dr. Michael Torrence, shown here giving a speech to the Bedford County Chamber of Commerce, was recently appointed to the American Association of Community Colleges (AACC) Commission on Institutional Infrastructure and Transformation. {Photo Provided}

MOORE COUNTY — The American Association of Community Colleges (AACC) Commission on Institutional Infrastructure and Transformation recently appointed Motlow State President Dr. Michael Torrence to a three year appointment that extends until June 2023.

The AACC is the primary advocacy organization for the nation’s community colleges. The association represents nearly 1,200 two-year, associate degree-granting institutions, and more than 12 million students.

Motlow’s seventh president recently received other appointments and awards including the PTK Honor Society Presidential Advisory Board, PTK Honor Society International Paragon President Award, GlobalMindED Inclusive Excellence Leader Award, and the Berkeley College Online Advisory Board.

“We are certain that Michael Torrence’s insights and leadership will significantly contribute to the Board’s decision-making process and its ability to serve the interests of all AACC member institutions,” said Dr. Walter G. Bumphus, President and CEO of AACC. “Dedicated leadership is essential to the continued success of community colleges and our association.” •

{The Lynchburg Times is the only independently owned and operated newspaper in Lynchburg. We cover Metro Moore County government, Jack Daniel’s Distillery, Nearest Green Distillery, Tims Ford State Park, Motlow State Community College, Moore County High School, Moore County Middle School, Lynchburg Elementary, Raider Sports, plus regional and state news.}

MCHS Juniors: Motlow offers free Mechatronics degree

Jesse Donaldson (left) recently graduated with a Mechatronics degree from Motlow before he graduated from Franklin County High School. Jessie is one of 11 graduates to complete the program in May 2020. {Photo Provided}

MOORE COUNTY — Motlow’s dual enrollment program allow Moore County High School (MCHS) juniors to get a jump on their college careers. Many MCHS students graduate high school with their Associates Degree already in hand. Now, Motlow State offers another outstanding educational opportunity for local students … free dual enrollment courses to high school juniors interested in pursuing a degree in Mechatronics.

Mechatronics is a synergy of mechanical, electrical, and computerized technologies that together form a complex system used in product engineering, manufacturing, and packaging operations. Opportunities for employment with a Mechatronics degree are wide-ranging across the business landscape.

“High school juniors are now able to earn an associate degree, at no extra cost to them or their families, while they earn their high school diploma,” said Motlow Administrator of High School Initiatives Sally Pack. “The high demand for qualified employees in Mechatronics, along with this free opportunity, is a win-win for families, area industries, our students, and the college.”

Motlow leads the state in the number of dual enrollment students it matriculates each year. In May 2020, 11 high school seniors became the first graduates from the Middle College Mechatronics program, funded by a grant awarded to Motlow in 2018. Michael Walton of Murfreesboro earned his associate degree in Mechatronics from Motlow and his high school diploma from Oakland in the spring of 2020.

“Earning my Associate Degree in Mechatronics through the Dual Enrollment program at Motlow, with no debt, and graduating from Oakland at the same time gives me a head start on my career,” said Walton. “The program is challenging, the last three months even more so, but I completed it. I’m starting MTSU this fall to earn my bachelor’s degree in Mechatronics.”

The Mechatronics program’s goal is to prepare local students for high-wage employment as high skilled technicians. Many Motlow graduates have gone on to successful careers at Nissan, Bridgestone, and many other Tennessee companies.

“We are very proud of our dual enrollment program in mechatronics,” said Motlow Dean of Career and Technical Programs Fred Rascoe. “High school students are taking advantage of this offering and obtaining their certificate or AAS degree in Mechatronics. They are well on their way toward a gratifying career.”

Motlow Mechatronics is nationally recognized and certified by the Association for Technology Management and Applied Engineering (ATMAE) as a premier educational program with a high job placement rate of graduates. Motlow Mechatronics instructors have been awarded two National Science Foundation grants totaling more than $1 million in the last three years.

Additional to partnerships with high schools, Motlow engages in 2 + 2 partnerships with universities and colleges. An example is the Mechatronics 2 + 2 partnership with Tennessee State University, allowing Motlow graduates to pursue their bachelor’s degree in mechatronics and remain on a Motlow campus.

For more information, visit the Motlow State website by clicking here. •

{The Lynchburg Times is an independently owned and operated newspaper that publishes new stories every morning. Covering Metro Moore County government, Jack Daniel’s Distillery, Nearest Green Distillery, Tims Ford State Park, Motlow State Community College, Moore County High School, Moore County Middle School, Lynchburg Elementary, Raider Sports, plus regional and state news.}

Motlow launches new Digital Archive Project on Dec. 13

Newspaper clippings like this one are part of Motlow College’s new digital archive project. {Photo Provided}

LOCAL NEWS — It all started when Motlow State staff started gathering historic items for their 50th anniversary.

“When we saw the content, we knew these artifacts needed to be featured as one of our celebrated 50th anniversary milestones,” said Terri Bryson, Vice President of External Affairs. “This has been a real labor of love for our library staff. They have worked hard curating and digitizing huge portions of the college’s archival material. It’s important to note, though, this collection exists as a testimony of the faithfullness shared by 50 years of devoted historians and librarians.”

That faithfullness led to a digital archive project that will preserve these one-of-a-kind documents, many which are rapidly deteriorating, for years to come. Motlow staff will unveil the project on Friday, December 13 at the Clayton-Glass Library on the Moore County campus from 8-10 a.m. The event will offer a sneak preview of the gallery before the digital site goes live on Christmas Eve.

The project’s already helping students, the college says.

“As new students become aware of the site, they learn more about the creation and presentation of recent historical events, particularly regional events that influence their lives today. As historians assert, learning about the past informs the present.”

The resource will also serve as wonderful collection of primary source documents related to the college and the areas that surround each campus.

It’s been designed with our new social lives in mind. A social media plug-in within the digital archives allows user to share items directly that have rarely been seen outside the library walls. An additional Google analytics plug-in also allow Motlow to monitor the sites traffic and user statistics, which will help them as they build future digital platforms.

“Our hope is that easy access to this collection of memorable content will help alumni reconnect with their alma mater and become champions for our next 50 years,” said Motlow’s Director of Libraries Chris Bryant.

The Motlow Library Digital Archive will go live Dec. 24 as a special holiday gift to the college’s social media followers. For more information and to RSVP for the event, visit motlow.com/digitalarchive … on Twitter and Instagram, follow @MotlowState … on Facebook, follow @MotlowStateCC.•

{The Lynchburg Times is an independently owned and operated newspaper that publishes new stories every morning. Covering Metro Moore County government, Jack Daniel’s Distillery, Nearest Green Distillery, Tims Ford State Park, Motlow State Community College, Moore County High School, Moore County Middle School, Lynchburg Elementary, Raider Sports, plus regional and state news.}

Motlow scholarship an example of targeted giving with a specific goal

Pictured (from left to right) are Drew Hooker, director of EMS education; Ashleigh Whaley, EMS student and Smith Scholarship recipient; Mandy Smith, daughter of John Smith; Debra Smith, John Smith’s widow and interim dean of students; Pat Hendrix, dean of nursing and allied health; Mark Miller, nursing student and Smith Scholarship recipient; and Amy Holder, director of nursing.

LOCAL NEWS | Education — Sepsis exists as a real problem for America’s healthcare facilities. It happens when your body triggers an extreme chain reaction in response to an infection. Hospital patients, especially those over the age of 65 and suffering with chronic disease, are especially susceptible. It affects more than 1.5 million U.S. patients annually and is estimated to be responsible for as many as one in three hospital deaths.

When Fayetteville resident John J. Smith died from sepsis, his family members decided be part of the solution by funding an annual scholarship targeted at sepsis prevention. They collaborated with Motlow Nursing Dean Pat Hendrix to develop the John Smith Memorial Scholarship. Motlow College awarded the first annual scholarships to two area students recently: nursing student Mark Miller and EMS student Ashleigh Whaley. The Smith family will fund the annual scholarship for the next five years.

It’s an example of targeted giving aimed at positive social change … specifically increasing sepsis awareness and reducing the number of preventable deaths. It’s part of an combined effort that’s pushed Motlow to the forefront of national sepsis education. During September and in conjunction with National Sepsis Awareness Month, Motlow State and the Smith family partnered to present Think Sepsis First, a conference that informed hundreds of students and healthcare professionals about the dangers of sepsis.

“The Sepsis conference was a wonderful event for us to help initiate and sponsor, and we believe the impact of the conference will be far reaching in saving lives. But as a family we wanted to do more,” said Debra Smith, John Smith’s widow. “Joining hands with the Foundation to annually provide a nursing and an EMS student with educational financial support seemed perfect to our family. John always gave so much to his community, his work, and those he cared about. It means so much to us to remember John in this special way, and to continue to push for greater sepsis awareness.”

Motlow Foundation Executive Director Lane Yoder encourages donors to give with a purpose and specific goals in mind. Anyone interested in targeted, goal-driven educational giving should contact Yoder at 931-393-1692 or lyoder@mscc.edu. •

{The Lynchburg Times is an independently owned and operated newspaper that publishes new stories every morning. Covering Metro Moore County government, Jack Daniel’s Distillery, Nearest Green Distillery, Tims Ford State Park, Motlow State Community College, Moore County High School, Moore County Middle School, Lynchburg Elementary, Raider Sports, plus regional and state news.}

Class of 2020: TN Promise applications now open

Class of 2020 students who apply for the TN Promise Scholarship may use it at Motlow State Community College and other two-year programs. {Photo Provided}

STATE NEWS — Applications for the TN Promise scholarship, which provides two years of tuition-free attendance at a community or technical college, opened on August 1. All high school seniors interested in the scholarship must register online before November 1 to be qualified.

Tennessee Promise is both a scholarship and mentoring program focused on increasing the number of students that attend college in our state. It provides students a last-dollar scholarship, meaning the scholarship will cover the cost of tuition and mandatory fees not covered by the Pell grant, the HOPE scholarship, or the Tennessee Student Assistance Award. Students may use the scholarship at any of the state’s 13 community colleges and 27 colleges of applied technology including the Tennessee College of Applied Technology in Shelbyville and Motlow State Community College.

Applications are available at www.TNpromise.gov. The site also contains a handy checklist for students (and parents) to make sure they meet all relevant deadlines. •

{The Lynchburg Times is Moore County’s only independently owned and operated newspaper. We cover local news as well as regional news from Bedford, Coffee, Franklin, and Lincoln counties. We also cover things of interest to the 300,000 folks who come to visit our small town each year. You can follow us on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter.}