Faulkner will address questions during event

By Randall Barnes

Student Government Association’s Presidential Forum will take place October 29 at 12:45 p.m. in Wood Campus Center, Dining Room A.

Dr. Jerry Faulkner, President of Volunteer State Community College, and his cabinet will answer questions by students and the Student Government Association.

Presidential Forums are held once every semester. According to the digital flyer, questions can and should be emailed to sga@volstate.edu. Students may also ask questions during the forum itself, which has been heavily encouraged in the past.

Question submission is welcomed, as it helps ensure student concerns are being addressed. Any questions that do not get spoken responses will get written ones.

Examples of questions asked in the past include an inquiry into the possibility of four-year programs in the future, of a connector being built to allow students to cross a busy street and of Friday classes being brought back to reduce tightness in the schedule.

According to Vol State’s website, “The Student Government Association (SGA) was established to be an avenue through which student interests and needs may be expressed. It provides students the opportunity to work with college administration officers in matters affecting the welfare of the student body. The SGA works with all student organizations to maintain and improve the quality of student life both on and off campus.”

SGA’s executive board is currently as follows:

President: Preston Tatum

Vice President: Christopher Robinson

Campus Activities Board (CAB) Chair: Katherine Bullard

Attorney General: Debera Bennett

Secretary of Treasury: Danielle Salvato

Senior Senator: Christina Donnini

Cookeville Co-Regent: Pam Davis

Cookeville Co-Regent: Latasha Deschamp

Springfield Regent Position: OPEN

Livingston Regent Position: OPEN

SGA Advisors are Tabitha Sherrell and Nancy Blomgren

A letter to the Editor

Dear Editor,

Thank you for your coverage of the college’s accreditation efforts. I just want to clarify a few facts regarding the process.

The On-site Reaffirmation Committee that visited with us on Oct. 7-10 does not grant accreditation. As a committee of peers from other community colleges, their task was to review our compliance with the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges’ (SACS COC) Principles of Accreditation. They verified that we are adhering to the 58 principles to insure academic and student service quality and administration governance. And as Dr. Pimentel and Mrs. Lewis indicated, they reviewed our Quality Enhancement Plan (QEP).

At the exit interview on Thursday morning, the committee informed us that they had no recommendations meaning they found no instances of non-compliance. This will be included in their report which will be submitted to the SACS COC board. Our reaffirmation of accreditation will not be approved until the board meeting in June 2020. The delay is available so that if there had been recommendations we would have time to correct and respond.

We are celebrating that we had a report with no recommendations and we will celebrate our reaffirmation of accreditation in June of next year.

Dr. Jerry Faulkner

President, Volunteer State Community College

A kit, a kit, my kingdom for first aid kit

By Jim Hayes

It would appear, that as the average age of students on the Volunteer State Campus increases, steps must be taken in order to address the occasional health emergencies which will inevitably occur.

Evidence of this need can be clearly illustrated by an incident which occurred at the school just last Thursday.

I was sitting on the second floor of Caudill Hall taking an exam when I shed my jacket. Having just gotten to school from one of my three times a week dialysis treatments, I noticed that the bandage which covered my fistula (the spot on my lower left forearm through which the dialysis machine drains, cleans and replenishes my blood) was soaked with blood.

I asked the instructor to be excused from class then asked if there was a first aid kit in the building. My instructor asked two other professors and together, they determined that no such thing existed in that building.

No problem, I thought, I’ll go over to the office of the Campus Police Department. Surely there would be one there. No such luck, and after being told rather curtly not to drip blood on the counter top (certainly a compassionate gesture on behalf of the dispatcher), I took a seat on a chair at the table.

Chief Angela Lawson brought me a towel to rest my now vigorously bleeding arm on while the dispatcher called for an ambulance.

At this point, the story takes on a Keystone Kopsish turn because while an ambulance was dispatched to Volunteer State Community College, there was already an emergency vehicle just outside the door of the Police Department.

In fact, as the second emergency crew came into the building, a member of the first crew was already unwrapping, cleaning and rebandaging the affected area.

Now, here at The Settler, we try to never pose a problem without offering some sort of solution.

Therefore, in the interest of insuring the safety of our fellow students, we propose that at a minimum, each building on campus have a first aid kit in a common, easily identified location.

In fact, a better solution would be a first aid kit on each floor or even in each classroom.

My incident did not require intervention by EMT’s. In fact, I could have handled it myself with some gauze, water and adhesive tape.

Instead, I suspect I will receive a bill from Sumner County because the EMT’s scrambled for a largely unnecessary call. This is in no way a knock on the Vol State PD. They took the proper actions.

However, this situation should never have escalated to the level where an ambulance had to be called and it wouldn’t have had a basic first aid kit been available.

It is certainly time to make simple first aid supplies available to all Volunteer State Community College students regardless of their age.

Lawson juggles role as chief and mother

By Velma Crochet

Angela Lawson is the Chief of Police at Volunteer State Community College. She is also a wife,mother, friend and role model for women hoping to work in a public service job.

Lawson, graduate from high school in 1993 from Stratford High in Nashville, Tennessee. Shortly after she began college at VSCC while working fulltime. She finished her bachelor’s degree in criminal justice at Bethel University in Nashville, Tennessee.

Lawson said, she comes from a family of public service workers starting with her parents. Her mother is a retired fire chief and her father is a retired fire fighter, she said.

It does not stop with her parents, two of her brothers are also fire fighters, her other brother is an IT guy for Gallatin, Tennessee, police department and her sister is working in non-profit.

Lawson said, she along with her family are called to do this type of work. She also said her calling to public service stuck.

On a person’s worse day is when police show up and it is important to Lawson, to be there, the human aspect of her job is special to her, she said.

Lawson was a civilian officer with Metro in Nashville, Tennesse. That is where she realized being a police officer was her calling. She then worked for Gallatin Police Department for 13 years.

Tabitha Sherrell, Coordinator of Student Services said she has been working with the Lawson since the Chief began. Sherrell also said, in her role at Vol State working with Lawson has been awesome and she is easy to get in touch with by email, phone or just stopping by her office.

“Working with me and being flexible while setting up events is great,” said Sherrell.

Lawson and I collaborated to set up the “brew with the blue” so the students and VSCC officers will be able to interact every month, said Sherrell.

“Chief Lawson makes me feel safe and I would trust her with my life in an emergency situation,” said Sherrell.

Lawson has been working at Vol State for six years and really enjoys it. This position allows plenty of time off to be with her family. Not many officers are able to enjoy the weekends, holidays and semester breaks at home.

“I like the way she leads her team because they genuinely care about our students and are equally concerned about their safety,” said Tiffany Zwart, Coordinator of Student Support Student Engagement and Support.

Lawson has been married for nine years to her wife April and they have three sons.

Lawson choose Gallatin, Tennessee, to raise her family because even with all the growth the town still has that small community feel and offers amazing schools for her sons to attend, she said.

She really enjoys spending time with her three sons and wife playing virtual reality games, soaking up as much time together as possible or watching sports such as tennis, said Lawson.

Lawson loves all Mexican food and hates things out of order.

Christmas is her favorite holiday. Now that her sons are a little older, her family can travel and just enjoy time together. Working at VSCC gives her extra opportunity to enjoy a longer holiday with her family and she is very grateful for that, said Lawson.

Lawson is currently reading a motivational book by Jean Sincero ,”You Are a Badass Everyday.”

Orange coffee mugs were handed out at “brew with the blue” because that is Lawson’s favorite color.

“Behind the badge, behind the uniform we are humans,” said Lawson.

Nugs for Drugs set for Oct. 30

By Fay Kabasu

On Oct. 30 at noon the Volunteer Community College Campus Police and Pioneer Prevention, in partnership with the Sumner County Anti-drug Coalition will be hosting “Nugs for Drugs”. It is an event where they will be receiving any prescription medicine in exchange for chicken nuggets.Tiffany Zwart, of Student Engagement, said, “We highly encourage the proper disposal of unused medication to combat the opioid crisis. In exchange for your prescription medication you will receive chicken nuggets and a t-shirt. The first 25 participants will receive a lockable drug box.’’

This event also bring awareness to drug abuse and how to prevent it.