Pellissippi plans more on-campus classes

Lesli Bales-SherrodDeep West, Our Town Teens

Pellissippi State Community College will welcome more students back to campus this fall, with the new Bill Haslam Center for Math and Science opening in August.


The new 82,000-square-foot building on the college’s Hardin Valley Campus has been under construction since May 2019 and is on track to open for fall 2021 classes, as was planned before the pandemic. It will include 18 classrooms, six computer labs, nine science labs and a teacher education center for the college’s Early Childhood Education and Teacher Education programs.

L. Anthony Wise Jr.

“The Bill Haslam Center for Math and Science will help us meet demands for classrooms and lab spaces that have increased due to the Tennessee Promise and Tennessee Reconnect scholarships,” said Pellissippi State President L. Anthony Wise Jr.

“And with more classes meeting on campus and more student services open in person, we are hopeful that fall 2021 will feel more like fall 2019 than fall 2020.”

Pellissippi State plans to offer more in-person classes in fall 2021, although the college will continue to offer classes in other formats as well.

“Our No. 1 priority since the pandemic began has been providing a safe environment for our students and employees,” Wise said. “We feel like we’ve been able to do that thanks to technology and the flexibility and dedication of our faculty and staff, but we look forward to seeing more faces on campus this fall.”

Pellissippi State’s emergency management team, which has been handling decisions during the pandemic, will continue to meet and determine what protocols to put in place before fall semester begins Aug. 23. The college will continue to follow Centers for Disease Control and Prevention guidelines and as well as local health department guidance for preventing the spread of COVID-19 on campus.

“By limiting the number of classes taught in person during the pandemic, we were able to ensure that our students who opted for on-campus classes had the space necessary to practice social distancing,” Wise said. “Even as we offer more in-person options this fall, our faculty and staff are working together to ensure that classes are staggered in a way that still allows for social distancing not only inside our classrooms, but also in our buildings’ common spaces in between classes.”

Students who prefer online courses still will have a variety of classes to choose from. Pellissippi State’s online enrollment had been growing even before the pandemic began as students chose options that allowed them to learn from home on their own time instead of meeting with their instructors and classmates at a set time.

Pellissippi State offers 62 pathways that will transfer to four-year universities in addition to its 27 programs that prepare graduates to enter the workforce in two years, all for about $2,100 in tuition per semester for a full-time student.

Registration for summer and fall 2021 begins April 5. To learn more about Pellissippi State, visit www.pstcc.edu or call 865-694-6400.

Lesli Bales-Sherrod does marketing and writing for Pellissippi State Community College.

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