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Tusculum celebrates change to university

Community Contributor SUZANNE RICHEY • Updated Jun 29, 2018 at 2:30 PM

GREENEVILLE — More than 300 people attended a celebration barbecue Thursday, June 28, on the soon-to-be former Tusculum College campus and shared in the transformation to Tusculum University.

The event included an official sign unveiling and remarks from campus and community officials, as well as a community barbecue.

State Rep. David Hawk, who attended Tusculum, read a proclamation from the state assembly congratulating Tusculum on the change to university. Greene County Mayor David Crum and Tusculum Mayor Alan Corley also provided words of congratulations.

Tusculum will transition from college to university status on July 1.

“The name will officially become Tusculum University in the 2018-2019 academic year,” said Dr. James Hurley, president of Tusculum. “The change will be primarily in regards to status, helping to distinguish Tusculum from the community college programs that have gained widespread attention through initiatives such as Tennessee Promise.”

The new entrance signs were unveiled by Dr. Hurley, his family and members of the Tusculum University Board of Trustees.

The change to university will allow for strategic structuring of the academic programs currently offered by Tusculum, said Dr. Hurley. This includes the creation of a new College of Health Sciences.

“The decision to transition to university will provide the right structure for new programs being developed, including a School of Optometry and a physician assistant program. This is an exciting new time at Tusculum. Our mission has always been to serve the educational needs of our region. These advances are significant steps in providing additional opportunities in Appalachia.”

Tusculum University, the first institution of higher education in Tennessee and the 28th oldest in the nation, grounded in a civic, liberal and medical arts curriculum pathways for career preparation, personal development and civic engagement. Approximately 1,800 students are enrolled in the main campus in Greeneville and two off-site locations in East Tennessee.