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APSU, Vol State considering collaboration

November 4, 2003


Austin Peay and Volunteer State Community College are discussing a collaboration that would provide the last two years of a baccalaureate degree at Volunteer States main campus in Gallatin.
November 4, 2003


Austin Peay and Volunteer State Community College are discussing a collaboration that would provide the last two years of a baccalaureate degree at Volunteer State's main campus in Gallatin.

According to Dr. Sherry Hoppe, TBR Chancellor Charles Manning suggested the collaboration to her and VSCC President Warren Nichols last spring. She says Manning has made similar suggestions to Tennessee Technological University and Tennessee State University. Discussions are underway between TTU and VSCC, and TSU already has some bachelor's degree completion programs at VSCC.

So far, Austin Peay and VSCC have agreed VSCC will provide space in its advisement center for an APSU admissions officer to provide on-site information for prospective transfer students. The arrangement will be similar to one piloted last year with Nashville State Technical Institute. Hoppe says, “We anticipate that this will involve no more than one-half day per week during appropriate times in the semester.”

In addition, APSU and VSCC jointly will determine the feasibility of APSU's offering the junior and senior year of a limited number of programs on-site at VSCC. “We anticipate starting with one to two programs in Fall 2004, and will be determining which programs and the best time of day or evening through a survey of VSCC sophomores and graduates from the past five years,” says Hoppe.

Programs under consideration include business, communications, secondary education and/or a master's program in either curriculum and instruction or administration and supervision, liberal arts/fine arts/performing arts, medical technology, radiation therapy and professional studies.

“Obviously, APSU cannot offer all of the above and will be determining the market demand prior to a final decision about which (if any) programs to extend to VSCC,” Hoppe says. “The above list, however, was constructed with the knowledge of current TSU programs on site at VSCC and of initial discussions between VSCC and TTU about potential programs they might offer.”

Austin Peay's goal would be to provide programs that meet student and business needs without duplicating programs offered on-site by “our sister institutions in Middle Tennessee,” according to Hoppe.

Department chairs and faculty responsible for the above programs and any others to be considered will be involved in the determination of feasibility for a particular degree prior to any final decision. Hoppe says she will keep the University community informed about plans as they progress.

“I realize we will have differing opinions about the desirability of delivering degrees off-site, but I believe we should at least investigate this opportunity,” she says. “All views and opinions will be welcomed through the investigative process. Even in an era of shrinking resources, it may be possible to develop a cost-effective and viable way to accomplish this goal.”
—Rebecca Mackey