Tusculum College

60 Shiloh Road 
Greeneville TN 37743 

(423) 636-7300

Tusculum College

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Tusculum College
Tusculum seal.png
Motto Sit Lux (Latin)
("Let there be light")
Established 1794
Type Private
Endowment US$15.7 million
President Nancy B. Moody, DSN
Administrative staff
Undergraduates 2,446
Postgraduates 159
Location Tusculum, Tennessee, USA
Campus Rural, 140 acres (0.57 km2)
Colors Orange and Black
Athletics NCAA Division II
South Atlantic Conference
14 sports teams
Mascot Pioneers
Affiliations Presbyterian Church (USA)
Tusculum logo.png

Tusculum College is a coeducational private college affiliated with the Presbyterian Church (USA), with its main campus in the city of Tusculum, Tennessee, United States, a suburb of Greeneville. It is Tennessee's oldest college and the 23rd-oldest operating college in the United States.[1]

In addition to its main campus, the institution maintains a regional center for Graduate and Professional Studies in Knoxville, and additional satellite campuses across East Tennessee.


In 1794, two years before Tennessee became a state, Presbyterian ministers Hezekiah Balch and Samuel Doak, both educated at the College of New Jersey (now Princeton University), were ministering to the pioneers of East Tennessee, which was then the southwestern frontier of the United States.[2] They also strove to meet the educational needs of these Scots-Irish settlers. Doak and Balch were both visionaries who ultimately sought the same goals through their rival colleges. They wanted to educate settlers of the American frontier so that they would become better Presbyterians, and therefore, in their vision, better citizens.[3]

Origin of name

Doak christened the institution Tusculum after the homestead of Princeton University’s then-president Dr. John Witherspoon, a signer of the United States Declaration of Independence. The original Tusculum was a city near Rome, Italy and home to Roman scholar and philosopher Cicero. It was he who, along with others, identified the civic virtues that form the basis of civic republican tradition, which emphasizes citizens working together to form good societies that in turn foster individuals of good character.[4]

Key institutional events

  • 1784 Samuel Doak establishes Martin's Academy (renamed Washington College Academy in 1795).[5]
  • 1794 Greeneville College is chartered by the General Assembly of the Territory South of the River Ohio and established by Hezekiah Balch.[6]
  • 1808 Hugh Brown receives first academic degree from Tusculum's predecessor, Greeneville College.
  • 1816 Samuel Witherspoon Doak (son of Samuel Doak) founds Tusculum Academy, which operates in a log cabin adjacent to the present site of Tusculum College.[7]
  • 1844 Tusculum Academy renamed Tusculum College.[8] Andrew Johnson, who later becomes the 17th President of the United States, is one of its trustees. Johnson often walked the five miles (8 km) to and from Greeneville to participate in the debating activities at Tusculum.[9]
  • 1860s During the Civil War, college buildings serve as barracks for soldiers.
  • 1868 Greeneville College and Tusculum College merge to become Greeneville & Tusculum College.
  • 1878 First female students admitted to Greeneville & Tusculum College. By the turn of the 20th century, more than half of its students are women.
  • 1878 Student editor/printer Landon C. Haynes publishes first student newspaper, The Record, which later becomes The Pioneer; now known as The Pioneer Frontier.
  • 1908 Merger of Washington College Academy and Tusculum College.
  • 1912 Washington College Academy breaks away from the current Tusculum College.
  • 1913 McCormick Day (AKA “Nettie Day”) established, a day of service on campus and the local community. Through the philanthropy of Nettie Fowler McCormick — widow of Cyrus Hall McCormick, the inventor of a notable mechanized reaper — five major buildings are added on campus.[10]
  • 1917 First yearbook published, known as both Tusculana and Opus.
  • 1927 Southern Association of Colleges and Schools (SACS) formally accredits Tusculum for the first time.
  • 1950s Lantern festival begins, honoring graduating seniors and soon-to-be seniors.
  • 1959 The city of Tusculum is established.
  • 1984 Graduate and Professional Studies Program begins, extending learning opportunities to adult students. Originally titled Tusculum Adult Leaders Learning (TALL), the program opens satellite campuses locations throughout East Tennessee.
  • 1991 Civic Arts core program begins.
  • 1991 Focused (block) calendar adopted.


  • Greeneville College (1794–1860)
    • Hezekiah Balch, D.D. 1794–1810
    • Charles Coffin, D.D. 1810–27
    • Henry Hoss 1828–36
    • Alfred Hoss 1836–38
    • James McLin, B.A. 1838–40
    • Samuel Matthews 1843–45
    • Charles Van Vlech 1845–46
    • John Fleming 1846–47
    • William B. Rankin, D.D. 1854–58
    • John Lampson 1859–60
  • Tusculum Academy (1829–68)
  • Tusculum College (1844–68)
    • Samuel Witherspoon Doak, D.D. 1844–64
    • William Stephenson Doak, D.D. 1865–68
  • Tusculum and Greeneville College (1868–1912)
    • William Stephenson Doak, D.D. (1868–82)
    • Alexander M. Doak (acting) 1882–83
    • Jeremiah Moore, D.D. 1883–1901
    • Samuel A. Coile, D.D. 1901–07
    • Charles O. Gray, D.D. 1907–12
  • Tusculum College (1912–present)
    • Charles O. Gray, D.D. 1912–31
    • Charles A. Anderson, D.D. 1931–42
    • John McSween, D.D. 1942–44
    • Jere A. Moore (acting) 1944–46
    • George K. Davies, Ph.D. 1946–50
    • Leslie K. Patton (acting) 1950–51
    • Raymond C. Rankin, D.D. 1951–65
    • Douglas C. Trout, Ph.D. 1965–68
    • Charles J. Ping (acting) 1968–69
    • Andrew N. Cothran, Ph.D. 1969–72
    • Thomas G. Voss, Ph.D. 1972–78
    • Earl R. Mezoff, Ed.D. 1978–88
    • Robert E. Knott, Ph.D. 1989–2000
    • Thomas J. Garland (interim) 2000
    • Dolphus E. Henry III, Ph.D. 2000–07†
    • Russell L. Nichols, Ph.D. (interim) August 2007–April 2009‡
    • Nancy B. Moody, DSN April 2009–present††

The Tusculum College board of trustees placed President Dolphus Henry on paid administrative leave on 22 May 2007, following a vote of no confidence by the faculty.[11] Two trustees with notable experience as university presidents (Drs. Edward J. Kormondy and Angelo Volpe) alternately shared leadership responsibilities until an interim president could take office.[12] Dr. Henry announced his resignation in July 2007.[13]
Dr. Russell L. Nichols, president emeritus of Hanover College, assumed the duties of interim president on 1 August 2007.[14]
††On 28 February 2009, the Tusculum College board of trustees elected Dr. Nancy B. Moody, president of Lincoln Memorial University, to be the institution's 27th president. She was scheduled to assume office on 27 April 2009.[15]



Tusculum is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools to award baccalaureate degrees and the Master of Arts in education and the Master of Arts in organizational management.

It also maintains institutional memberships with the American Council on Education, the Council of Independent Colleges, the Association of American Colleges and Universities, the Council for Higher Education Accreditation, the Council for Opportunity in Education,[16] the Tennessee Independent Colleges and Universities Association,[17] the Tennessee State Board of Education, the Appalachian College Association,[18] the Association of Presbyterian Colleges and Universities, the American Association of University Women, the American Medical Association, and the New York State Board of Regents.

Programs of study

Majors. Tusculum College offers these main fields of specialization to its undergraduate students: Athletic Training, Biology (with concentrations in Medical Pre-Professional, Pre-Physical Therapy, Medical Technology, Organismal Biology, and Pre-Pharmacy), Business Administration (with concentrations in General Management, Management Accounting, and Economics), English (with concentrations in Literature, Creative Writing, Journalism, and Professional Writing), Environmental science, Field Guide/Naturalist, History, Film & Broadcasting, Mathematics (with Computer Science concentration), Museum Studies, Political Science, Psychology, Sports Management, Sports Science, and Visual Arts (with concentrations in Fine Arts and Graphic Design).

Teacher licensure programs. Students seeking baccalaureate degrees in education select one of the following subfields to qualify for a state board granted license: Pre-Secondary Education (Early Childhood Education PreK–3, Elementary Education K–6), Secondary Education (Biology 7–12, English 7–12, History 7–12, Mathematics 7–12, Psychology 9–12), K–12 Education (Physical Education K–12, Visual Arts K–12), and Special Education (Special Education Modified and Comprehensive K–12, Special Education Early Childhood).

Minors. In addition to their academic majors, students at Tusculum College can also study these secondary specialties: Biology, Chemistry, Coaching, Computer Information Systems, English, Environmental Science, History, Journalism, Mass Media, Mathematics, Management, Museum Studies, Political Science, Psychology, Religion, Visual Arts, and the following minors in Education: English, History, Early Childhood Education, Elementary Education, and Special Education, Modified & Comprehensive.

Other disciplines. Tusculum College also offers additional non-degree-conferring courses in Geography, Music, Physics, Sociology, Spanish, and Theater.

Focused calendar

A semester at Tusculum College consists of four 18-day "blocks," during which students take one course per block. Students and faculty concentrate on a single course without the distraction of preparing for other classes. Because daily classes last an average of three hours, students and faculty interact a great deal more than a conventional 50-minute semiweekly class. These extended periods are designed to allow deeper exchanges of ideas and more opportunities for each class member to participate. Faculty emphasize active engagement in their students, much in the tradition of the Socratic method.

Since no conflicts exist with other classes, faculty can arrange field trips, laboratory work, and other out-of-classroom experiences that would be impossible with the conventional format. For example, recent courses have included extended trips to Belize, Costa Rica, Europe, Atlanta, Chicago, New York City, and Washington, D.C.. Dozens of other courses have included overnight or day trips as an integrated part of their curriculum.

The only four other colleges in the nation use this scheduling method are Colorado College, Cornell College, Maharishi University of Management, and The University of Montana—Western.

Buildings and facilities

Tusculum College Historic District
Tusculum College is located in Tennessee
Tusculum College
Location U.S. 11 and TN 107, Tusculum, Tennessee
Coordinates 36°10'25?N 82°45'41?W? / ?36.17361°N 82.76139°W? / 36.17361; -82.76139Coordinates: 36°10'25?N 82°45'41?W? / ?36.17361°N 82.76139°W? / 36.17361; -82.76139
Area 18.5 acres (7.5 ha)
Architect Sullivan,Louis H., et al.
Architectural style Colonial Revival, Late Victorian, Georgian Revival
NRHP Reference # 80003800[19]
Added to NRHP November 25, 1980
An asterisk (*) denotes a listing on the National Register of Historic Places.


A member of the South Atlantic Conference, Tusculum fields 14 varsity teams in NCAA Division II competition.

In 2004, Ricardo Colclough, a defensive back and kick returner, became the first Tusculum Pioneers football player to be drafted by the National Football League when he was selected in the second draft round by the Pittsburgh Steelers. Colclough, the only Tusculum player to appear in an NFL game, played for the Carolina Panthers. He was dismissed from the team in August 2008.[23]

In 2007, former Tusculum College basketball player, Tyler White, became a member of the Washington Generals, the exhibition team that travels with and plays against the Harlem Globetrotters.

In August 2009, Chris Poore, another former Tusculum College basketball player, also became a member of the Washington Generals.[24]

Tusculum Athletics.png

On September 4, 2014, the Tusculum football team hosted the College of Faith, an online institution in Charlotte, North Carolina. In a 71-0 win, the Pioneers set two NCAA all Division records: fewest total yards allowed (minus-100) and fewest rushing yards allowed (minus-124).[25] Tusculum also had three safeties, which tied a Division II record.

Key events in athletic program

  • 1900 Baseball team forms, becoming Tusculum Pioneers' first sports team
  • 1902 First women's athletic team (tennis) forms
  • 1903 Intercollegiate athletics play begins
  • 1903 Football team forms
  • 1906 Basketball team forms
  • 1912 First professional athletic coaches hired
  • 1924 First women's basketball team formed
  • 1925 Institution joins Smoky Mountain Athletic Association
  • 1930s Intramural sports program begins, including women's softball team
  • 1970 Soccer team forms
  • 1987 Baseball team advances to District Tournament for 1st time
  • 2009 Tusculum Pioneers volleyball team reach 1st NCAA Division II tournament

Sports facilities

Tusculum’s sports facilities include lighted football, baseball, soccer, and softball fields; an intramural field; and six lighted tennis courts that support a variety of outdoor activities as well as physical education instruction.

A new, modern athletics complex was dedicated in October 2003 in honor of business and community leader Scott M. Niswonger, a member of Tusculum College’s Board of Trustees whose donations made the new facility possible. Its major features include a field house located behind the west end zone of Pioneer Field, with large locker area facilities that can be divided into four locker rooms. An indoor practice and soccer facility with interior space of about 44,400 square feet (4,120 m2) features FieldTurf, an artificial playing surface used by major college and NFL teams.

With improvements made through the athletics complex development project, Pioneer Field's seating capacity is now at 3,500. New parking facilities were added through the project. New and improved pedestrian ways, fencing, and lighting in the athletics complex area were developed in a style to match that already on the campus. A modern press box facility, built to blend with the architectural style of the campus’ most historic facilities, is also part of the athletics complex project.

A baseball stadium, Pioneer Park, was added to the complex in 2004. The stadium, used by both the Tusculum Pioneers baseball team and the Greeneville Astros (the Minor League Baseball team of the Houston Astros) has a seating capacity of 2,500 and features a covered seating area. The volleyball team, also known as the Lady Pioneers, play in Pioneer Arena for their volleyball games.

Notable alumni

Sources: Google Maps, The National Center for Education Statistics (NCES), Wikipedia, Yahoo! Answers

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