Tyler Junior College opened its Spring 2018 semester with convocation ceremonies Tuesday in Wise Auditorium.
TJC President Dr. Mike Metke welcomed faculty and staff after a performance by the Chapel Hill High School Jazz Band. Metke pointed out that 15 of the 18 members of the high school group were connected to TJC through dual credit classes, Early College High School or the TJC Promise scholarship program.
Metke expressed appreciation to the faculty and staff for delivering the education and skills training needed to serve the needs of the students. He referred to TJC as the “pride of the community,” saying the community understands the value that TJC brings to the citizens as well as the local economy.
Metke presented an update on the TJC Promise, a scholarship program that enables students to attend TJC tuition-free for upholding commitments to academics and exemplary behavior. To date, more than 2400 students from the seven schools in TJC’s tax districts have signed up. The first students in the Promise program will enter TJC in 2020. Metke also shared that first-time, incoming students took more classes, earned more credits and achieved a higher GPA in Fall 2017.
A highlight of the program came when three members of the same family, all students at TJC, took the stage to address the crowd. Lisa Brown of Athens, along with her son Joshua and daughter Christiana, explained how they all came to TJC for the Licensed Vocational Nursing program, and thanked professors, staff and administrators for the encouragement and support they were receiving.
Metke welcomed new employees and recognized several outstanding departments and individuals with awards. The Continuous Improvement Award, which honors an entire department for improvements in student success factors, went to Engineering and Physical Science, Business and Foreign Languages. Demonstrated Excellence Awards were presented for multiple years of success in student outcomes to Humanities and Philosophy and Surgical Technology.
The Herrin Award for Excellence, which recognizes dedicated service by staff members was presented to Danielle Bruffett in Nursing, Tracie Bush in Advising and Crawford Reyes in Dual Credit.
Classes at TJC resume Tuesday, Jan. 16.
Established in 1926, Tyler Junior College is one of the largest community colleges in Texas, with nearly 12,000 students enrolled per semester. For over 90 years, TJC has embodied the true sense of the term “community college,” as reflected in its foundational promises to provide students with a quality education, a vibrant student life and opportunities for service to the community. TJC offers more than 120 degree and certificate programs, plus extensive training and technical programs, and offers opportunities for students to transfer to a four-year institution or gain the skills they need to go directly into the workforce. TJC is the only community college in Texas to offer a Bachelor of Science degree in Dental Hygiene. TJC features a 137-acre campus, rigorous academics, 58 national championships in athletics, stellar fine and performing arts programs; modern residential facilities, and organizations and clubs that reflect student diversity. In 2017, the Aspen Institute College Excellence Program named TJC as one of the nation’s top 150 community colleges.