Yvonne Petkus and Matt Tullis Art Exhibit,
Thigpen Gallery, 7am-9pm Monday through
Saturday, closed Sunday
Festival of Lights, Cafeteria, 12:30pm-1:30pm, Everyone invited for food, music and fellowship
Matt Tullis Art Exhibit Gallery Talk,
Rochelle Center, 1pm
6 and 7
Christmas Memories music concert and CD release, Wemyss Auditorium, Caudill Hall, 7:30pm, Suggested $5 donation for music scholarships, free with Vol State ID
Astronomy Department Star Watching Party,
Science Field Station, Sunset to 11pm
Music Students perform at the Whippoorwill on the Square in Gallatin, 6pm, No cover charge
January 8 thru Feb 21
Rachel Kirk art exhibit, Thigpen Library Gallery
Professional Development, Campus closed
Spring classes begin
MLK, Jr. holiday, Campus closed
Unity Day speaker Jewel Tankard from the TV show "Thicker than Water" 12:30pm and 7pm, Caudill Hall
Friday, November 22, 2013
Vol State student songwriters and music ensembles performed a great set this week at The Whippoorwill restaurant and music venue in Gallatin. Each songwriter is enrolled in Lynn Peterson's songwriting class. The students learn what it takes to put a song together. Once a student is given the steps to write a song, Lynn says they will write 10 to 12 songs a week!
"The songwriting class allows us to open up about how we feel or what is going on in our lives at that moment. We can express ourselves through music," said Andrew Spooner, who is enrolled in Peterson's songwriting course.
The Vol State Jazz Ensemble played a few songs and there were performances by students in the Commercial Music Ensemble.
"We perform a mixture of rock, pop,and country. It allows us to sing different styles of music to a wide variety of people on nights like this," said Kyle Cothron, a member of Vol State's Commercial Music Ensemble.
The Whippoorwill has a lovely atmosphere for enjoying music and hearing young, talented musicians. You too can check out Vol State music off-campus at places like the Whippoorwill. Stay tuned to the Vol State Facebook page for info about upcoming performances.
Posted by Tiffany Rivera at 9:11 AM
Wednesday, November 20, 2013
|Students pose with Santa Claus at a previous Christmas for the Kids Event.|
|Jacob Young, SGA vice-president and CFTK chairman.|
On Saturday, December 7 from 2-4 p.m. in the Cafeteria, there will be a party held for the children. The party will include crafts, games, gifts, food, and most importantly Santa Claus.
"We wanted it to be ready by Monday, so that if anyone was wanting to shop Black Friday they could. Possibly finding some great deals on items," said Young.
This event is only for Vol State students. There are other charities similar to this in the Sumner County area, such as Toys For Tots. This is an event that gives Vol State an opportunity to give back to our campus community.
If you have questions, contact Lori Miller in the Student Life and Diversity Initiatives office at 615-230-3461.
Posted by Tiffany Rivera at 4:23 PM
Tuesday, November 19, 2013
When I meet someone that is from a different part of the world or has a different culture than me, I am immediately interested. I love learning about different parts of the world and understanding their way of life: food, marriage, music, and even religion.
This is International Education Week here at Vol State. Throughout the week there will be events tailored around an international theme.
In the cafeteria today, I participated by trying three different international beverages, including a very interesting and strong ginger drink from Africa. I also received recipe cards so that I could make the drinks myself at home.
|Jacob Young samples the international beverages.|
Anne-Marie Ruttenbur, who is the coordinator of International Education at Vol State, went into great detail about the upcoming events this week.
"I think that each day will give everyone a chance to look into different cultures and learn something new," said Ruttenbur.
|Anne-Marie Ruttenbur provided different beverages to sample.|
During the international weddings event anyone can stop by and receive Mehendi art. Also known as henna, it's an intricate design of patterns drawn onto your hands and feet, symbolizing the deepening of bonds with your future husband.
On Wednesday, the topic is "Around the World in a Day". Everyone can stop by and see the many different countries that students and faculty have traveled to. This will be held in the Nichols Dining Room from 11:30 am to 2:00 pm, with lunch available at 12:30pm.
On Thursday, you can hear from international scholars visiting the United States as part of the Humphrey's Fellows Program at Vanderbilt. There will be speakers from countries such as Mauritania, Pakistan, and Russia from 6:00-8:00 p.m. You can also enjoy international food samples.
The grand finale of International Week will be Friday with an International Celebration in the Cafeteria.There will be different genres of music and an array of appetizers from different countries.
International Education Week could open your mind to a world more varied than you could imagine.
Posted by Tiffany Rivera at 8:30 AM
Monday, November 11, 2013
|Eddy and I on our wedding day.|
Many of you probably know my husband Eddy Rivera. He is extremely intelligent, funny, kind, and is my personal hero. He is my veteran. I celebrate him 365 days a year, not just one day in November.
"I get bummed out on Veterans Day," Eddy said, when I interviewed him for this story. "I am appreciative of all the recognition. I sometimes feel as if the 'thank you for your service' comments are spoken to be politically correct,being no deeper than a have a nice day. I usually just say thank you and move on with my day."
Eddy was born and raised in Brooklyn, New York. At 17-years-old he encouraged his mother to sign release papers to join the Army. He reported to boot camp in Oklahoma and then was given his duty station of Fort Benning,Georgia. Soon after arriving, he received his orders to deploy to Iraq.
The force of the explosion physically threw him from his Humvee, knocking him unconscious and killing two men inside.When he came to, his vision was blurred. Blood dripped from his ringing ears. Wounded men nearby screamed for help.
"I don't remember much about that day, it's still hazy. I will never be able to get the sounds and the smells out of my memory," Eddy said. He later found out it was an IED (Improvised Explosive Device) in the road.
After the incident, Eddy was transported to a military hospital in Landstuhl, Germany, where he soon discovered that his war was just beginning. I met Eddy soon after he returned to American soil. I had no idea that there was anything wrong with him. Even today, anyone could look at him and think that he was a healthy 27-year-old man.
Fast forward nine years later. Eddy is still battling. He received severe burns in the blast after fuel from the truck ignited. He suffers from kidney disease, he coughs up blood, and he has severe headaches. He has a traumatic brain injury and even his knees were impacted. His TBI (traumatic brain injury) affects his daily activities.
|Eddy looks through a small portion of his medical records.|
"Never will I smell fire the same way," he said. "I will never be at ease at the sound of fireworks and storms. It is sometimes embarrassing when I get startled or uneasy at the sight of stranded cars on the side of the road."
The challenges of being a wounded soldier and now a wounded veteran never stop. Not for my husband or any other soldier that has had similar experiences.The military never escapes a veteran, the shadows of war never stop appearing, and the scars will always be the first thing that they see when they look at themselves in a mirror,even if we cannot see them.
"Sometimes it is more painful to go to sleep than it is to go through the motions of my daily routine. It really never gets better, you just learn to cope. I struggle with fact that a lot of people will never be able to really understand me or even relate to what I have been through," Eddy said.
For the past nine years, Eddy and I have taught each other how to be more understanding, patient, loving, and how to make the best of every day. We have seen each other at our worst and best.I forget sometimes that Eddy has medical problems. Every now and then,I'll see the scars on his back and am quickly reminded of the horrible things he has faced. I have seen him completely disconnected from the world and am proud of the progress that he has made.But in those moments of disconnect,when the injuries take over, I am bluntly reminded that our lives will never be like any other couple our age.I have held him in the bathroom floor after he has coughed up blood. I have been to every doctor appointment, every procedure, waiting long hours in waiting rooms so that he knew he would not have to be alone.
Eddy has broken the stigma of what a disabled veteran looks like. He bears through his mental and physical pain, showing anyone who is watching that nothing should hold you back,no matter what is in the way.He goes beyond expectations and succeeds in everything that he does.From battlefield to honor student, my husband is what strength and courage is about.
Posted by Tiffany Rivera at 5:00 AM
Thursday, November 7, 2013
Students and staff can now change their own password if you are having problems logging onto My Vol State. This should help cut down on the reasons to call the IT Help Desk phone number. Here is how it works.
To use the new Utility click the link on the Portal Login page for ‘Change or Activate Your Password’ which is located under the Login button. The first screen contains instructions on the utility and the password guidelines.
Posted by Vol State at 8:21 AM
Wednesday, November 6, 2013
Posted by Vol State at 11:48 AM
Tuesday, November 5, 2013
Veterans Day is a day of remembrance and recognition. A day when Americans honor the devotion, service, and sacrifices of those who have protected our country. We have many student veterans here on campus. A veteran can join the Vol State Student Veterans of America Club. Also known as VSVA, it is an organization on campus that connects student veterans.
"We try to volunteer with organizations outside of Vol State such as the DAV, American Legion, and the VFW, but most importantly we try to reach out to the veterans on our campus," said Amanda Steele, who is the club president as well as a Navy Veteran. "I think it is important to maintain a support system for our peers."
|(Left to Right VSVA member Mark Autry, club president Amanda Steele, and club member Colby Shelton)|
Also, on Thursday November 7 the Office of Student Life and Diversity Initiatives will be hosting a Veterans Day Celebration. The Rep. Harold Love, Jr. will be the keynote speaker with a luncheon to follow.
"We wanted have a program that would best honor our current service members and our veterans," said Kenny Yarbrough, Director of Student Life and Diversity Initiatives. "We would not only like to honor our students that are currently serving or are veterans but our students, faculty, and staff that have family members that have served, are serving, or that have lost loved ones."
The students are collecting pictures of veterans with Vol State ties for a honor wall. It will be on display in the Nichols Dining Room. You can turn in pictures, but you need to do it soon. See the Office of Student Life in Wood 215.
Posted by Tiffany Rivera at 3:57 PM