“The Walters State Niswonger Campus represents more than a decade of hard work by many people. We hope the community will join us in celebrating this milestone,” said Dr. Tony Miksa, president of Walters State.
Walters State has had a presence in Greene County since 1975, when classes were offered at Greeneville Middle School. From there, classes moved into the historic Crescent School Building, the Greeneville/Greene County Vocational Annex, and, eventually, Laughlin Memorial Hospital.
The road to this campus expansion began in 2010, when Walters State received a $9 million capital outlay grant from the state of Tennessee to use in construction of the Niswonger Campus.
Construction officially began in 2013. Portions of the new building opened to students in fall 2017.
The new building features four natural science labs, four allied health labs, one allied health simulation lab, nine general educational classrooms, four collaboratory rooms, three computer labs, a learning-support emporium, a learning resource center, a 234-seat theatre, a dining hall, an outdoor amphitheater and a public safety wing.
Walters State’s new Occupational Therapy Program is housed in the new space. The Physical Therapist Assistant Program has expanded to the Niswonger Campus and, for the first time, an EMT class is being taught at the campus. The Walters State Basic Law Enforcement Academy has also enrolled more students.
The Tennessee Board of Regents, the governing board for the state’s community colleges and colleges of applied science, voted last fall to name the campus in honor of Greeneville philanthropist and businessman Scott Niswonger. The naming is in recognition of his substantial support of the college’s expansion in Greene County. Niswonger made the largest single gift — $5 million — in Walters State history to the new campus. He also provided leadership at the state and local levels to secure additional funding sources and support.
Tours of the 104,000-square-foot building will be available after the dedication. Refreshments will also be served. Community members may also see a counselor regarding enrollment for spring semester or financial aid, including Tennessee Promise and Tennessee Reconnect.
The campus is located at 221 N. College Street in Greeneville. For more information, contact the Walters State Foundation at (423) 585-2629.