THEC Weekly Updates

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clockFriday, February 17, 2017
Weekly Update 17 February, 2016 (Mike Krause)   

FOCUS Boards Confirmed by Legislature

On Monday, with passage in both the Senate and the House, resolutions confirming members of the six new locally governed institutions passed the General Assembly, bringing the FOCUS board confirmation process to conclusion. The boards will assume governance responsibility at their respective universities when Governor Haslam issues the call for their first meetings later this spring. Initial board meetings are expected to be scheduled in late March and early April.

College Access and Success Division Launches Text Messaging Platform

This week, the College Access and Success Division began a new text messaging initiative in partnership with Signal Vine. Based on extensive research conducted by Drs. Ben Castleman and Lindsay Page, the College Access and Success Division will be using Signal Vine’s platform to provide targeted, personalized messages intended to nudge students in the GEAR UP TN and Advise TN programs to complete steps in the college exploration, application, and enrollment processes. The messages sent this week were received by approximately 3,000 GEAR UP TN students and GEAR UP TN site coordinators received nearly 600 replies.

CTE Signing Day Celebrated at TCATs

ON Thursday, Tennessee Colleges of Applied Technology (TCATs) celebrated Career and Technical Education (CTE) Signing Day as part of a nationwide event. High School seniors who have committed to attending a TCAT after graduation were on hand at all 27 TCATs across the state. At most events, students signed letters of intent stating they planned to attend the TCAT and received a hat and then posed with their hat and letter. For many students, their families and counselors were also in attendance to support and cheer on the students. Some institutions also held mini-career fairs with local employers following the signing day celebrations. A number of THEC staff attended events: Jessica Gibson, Brett Gipson, Emily House, and Mary Laphen attended the TCAT Murfreesboro event at the Smyrna/Nissan campus; Kate Derrick attended the TCAT Newbern event; Kevin Edwards was at TCAT Nashville; Duane Gregg attended the celebration at TCAT Knoxville; and Curt Johnston attended at TCAT Morristown.

THEC Visit to TCAT Murfreesboro Smyrna Campus at Nissan

On Thursday, THEC staff visited the TCAT Murfreesboro Smyrna campus to learn about the partnership that exists between this TCAT location and Nissan. Staff visited classrooms and training facilities shared by TCAT students and Nissan employees and discussed career pathways for current TCAT students. Staff members also participated in discussions about Rutherford County’s progress toward Drive to 55 goals, and efforts to align higher education offerings and workforce needs in the county. Jessica Gibson, Brett Gipson, Emily House, and Mary Laphen attended this visit.

MTSU Veterans Transitioning Home Office Ribbon-Cutting

On Tuesday, Mike Krause, Kevin Bradley, Kate Derrick, and Brett Gipson attended a ribbon-cutting ceremony for the Daniels Center Veteran Transition Center Office at Middle Tennessee State University. Mike participated in the ceremonial ribbon-cutting and he also addressed the audience at the event following, as did MTSU President Sidney McPhee and Retired Lt. Gen. Keith Huber, senior advisor for veterans and leadership initiatives at MTSU. The Veterans Transitioning Home Office is part of the Charlie and Hazel Daniels Veterans and Military Family Center and was funded in part by a Veteran Reconnect grant, which THEC administers.

Capital Policies Working Group Meeting

Today, members of the Capital Policies Working Group met with THEC’s fiscal policy staff to discuss the new process by which THEC staff will receive, rank, and recommend capital outlay/facilities projects to the Commission, the Governor, and the Department of Finance & Administration. At the January quarterly meeting, the Commission identified broad topics that staff should consider when prioritizing and recommending capital projects, including facility use and condition, connection to state and institutional goals, and project type and scope. The group, comprised of institutional and system chief financial, academic, and facilities staff, discussed the operationalization of the Commission’s direction and how institutional metrics would be evaluated when projects are scored and recommended to the Commission. The Commission will receive and vote on a final capital outlay and maintenance policy from staff, reflecting these discussions, at the May quarterly meeting.

Tuition and Finance Policy Discussions

This week, the fiscal policy team spoke with the chief finance and budget officers of East Tennessee State University, Tennessee State University, and the University of Memphis. The staff discussed a host of topics with the institutional finance officers, particularly around the FOCUS Act and THEC’s increased role in setting binding tuition and fee ranges. At the May quarterly meeting, the Commission will set two binding tuition ranges for universities, community colleges, and TCATs to follow: one range for the maintenance (i.e., tuition) fee rate and one for the sum total combined maintenance and mandatory fee rate. Staff also reviewed the Governor’s FY 2017-18 proposed budget and discussed upcoming actions by the Commission and the new local boards. The finance policy team has conference calls scheduled with leaders of the remaining Locally Governed Institutions, as well as the University of Tennessee system and the Tennessee Board of Regents, in the coming weeks.

Trevecca Nazarene University, Student Teacher Presentation

On Monday, Victoria Harpool spoke to student teachers and education faculty at Trevecca Nazarene University regarding the use of data for improved education practice and student success.  Victoria provided the history and information on the Tennessee Value-Added Assessment System (TVAAS) and how current teachers and principals can use the data provided to tailor instruction to better serve all learners.  She also highlighted THEC’s work on the Drive to 55 initiatives, particularly how Tennessee Promise is changing the culture of college-going in Tennessee K-12 schools.

Grainger County College Access Work Featured in TN Department of Education “Seamless Pathways” Report

Grainger High School and GEAR UP TN site coordinator Vicki Farrar were highlighted in the Tennessee Department of Education’s “Seamless Pathways” report, which focuses on creating pathways between high school and postsecondary institutions. The report includes special recognition of Grainger High School’s work to increase the school’s college-going rate, which is up by 25 percentage points, 50% to 75%, over the past two years. Farrar and school counselors Jill Denton and Amanda Johnson have helped foster the school’s college-going culture through a variety of partnerships and activities. According to the report, “They attribute the school’s postsecondary enrollment growth to a school-wide team effort, key external partnerships and a lot of individualized support.”  In order to help students understand paying for college, Farrar is referred to as the school “FAFSA guru” and Denton and Johnson are the students’ “scholarship superheroes.” 

Sunset Performance Audit Entrance Conference

On Monday, Ann Collett, Russ Deaton, Mike Krause and Jason Cavender represented THEC and TSAC in the entrance conference at State Audit for the upcoming Sunset Performance Audit.  This was a joint entrance conference with UT and TBR, whose representatives participated via video conference.  The last audits were presented in 2014 and all four entities were given a continuation to June 30, 2018.  The projected timeline is for reports to be issued by December 2017 followed by presentation to the Government Operations Committee of the General Assembly.  These audits are required under the Tennessee Governmental Entity Review Law, Tennessee Code Annotated, Title 4, Chapter 29.

Veteran State Approving Agency National Meeting

Tom Morrison and Mitch Currey from the Veterans Division participated in the National Association of State Approving Agencies meeting in Washington DC this week.  The SAAs in each state approve all programs and institutions that are eligible to receive student benefits through the GI Bill, including on-the-job training and apprenticeship programs. The meeting allowed the SAAs to meet together with their federal partners from the US Department of Veterans Affairs to discuss mutual support of our veterans, and visit Capitol Hill for meetings with lawmakers.

College Access and Success Division Welcomes Kevin Edwards

Kevin Edwards has joined the College Access and Success division as the Program Coordinator for A graduate of Hume-Fogg High School and Santa Clara University, Kevin comes to THEC from Nashville’s Martin Luther King, Jr. Magnet High School where he most recently served as the college coach. He has taught and worked in Metro Nashville Public Schools for the past seven years and is passionate about the role can play in helping as many Tennesseans as possible choose their postsecondary and career path. Welcome, Kevin!

Tennessee News Reports and Releases

·         Complete Tennessee gathers leaders to discuss higher ed | Knoxville News Sentinel

·         Davenport talks free speech, diversity, AD search on first day | Knoxville News Sentinel

·         Grainger High preps students for success | WBIR (NBC affiliate in Knoxville) (focuses on GEAR UP TN program in Grainger County)

·         New boards approved for MTSU, TSU, other universities | The Tennessean

·         New MTSU offices help veterans move from college to a job | The Tennessean

·         Rudd praises board as ‘historic’ step for Uof M | Memphis Daily News

·         Tennessee says a third of its high school graduates didn’t meet requirements | National Public Radio

·         Why aren’t students finishing degrees? | The Daily Times (Maryville)

National News and Reports

·         As community colleges ‘have their moment,’ leaders face tough challenges | EdSurge News

·         Colleges can improve transfer rates | Inside higher Ed

·         How to Scale College in High School (Report) | College in High School Alliance

·         Oregon Promise too costly? | Inside Higher Ed

·         Reforming remediation | Education Next

·         The Role of Community Colleges in Postsecondary Success (Report) | National Student Clearinghouse Research Center

·         The secret to preventing community college dropouts? Start with middle school | EdSurge News (features Tennessee Promise and Putnam County Schools)

·         States are investing more in higher education | The Atlantic

clockMonday, February 13, 2017
Weekly Update 10 February, 2016 (Mike Krause)   

2017 Joint Report of Pre-Kindergarten through Higher Education in Tennessee

THEC has released the 2017 Joint Report of Pre-Kindergarten through Higher Education in Tennessee. Prepared in collaboration with the State Board of Education, this report identifies the state’s current needs at all levels of education and describes how each agency is attempting, through their respective master plans, to deliver results in these priority areas. The report includes, but is not limited to, discussion of four areas: (1) state needs in public education; (2) fulfillment of THEC and the SBE’s respective master plans; (3) duplication in elementary, secondary, and postsecondary education; and (4) compatibility of high school graduation requirements and admission requirements of postsecondary institutions. The full report is available on the THEC website.

FOCUS Board Confirmation Process

On Tuesday and Wednesday, Governor Haslam’s appointees to the boards of Austin Peay State University, Tennessee State University, and the Tennessee Technological University sat before the House and Senate Education Committees. The members of all three boards were recommended for confirmation.  The General Assembly is scheduled to vote on the resolutions on Monday night.

PPR Staff Visit Volunteer State and Nashville State

On Thursday, several members of the PPR team traveled to Volunteer State Community College and Nashville State Community College to meet with staff at each college’s Institutional Research (IR) office. The conversations focused on the role of IR offices at the campus level as well as issues IR staff face in research and assessment efforts. The discussions provided PPR staff with a better understanding of the multiple functions of campus IR offices (e.g., outcomes assessment, accreditation, and external reporting). Russ Deaton, Emily House, Amanda Klafehn, Taylor Odle, and Madison Dell all participated in these meetings.

Council for Advancement and Support of Education Conference

On Monday, Herbert Brown and Victoria Harpool of the Academic Affairs division attended the Council for the Advancement and Support of Education (CASE) District III conference in Nashville. CASE is an international association of education advancement officers whose members enhance their institutions by encouraging support—be it in the form of financial assistance, alumni loyalty, public esteem or new students.  Through the Quality Assurance Funding program, public universities will be conducting a survey of alumni this fall.  The CASE conference provided an opportunity for the Academic Affairs staff to gain insight on how alumni surveys are utilized to make strategic decision for institutions.

Members of College Access and Success Division Attend NCCEP Capacity Building Workshop

This week, Troy Grant, Duane Gregg, Shayla Guy, Quiana Rivers, and Courtney Rogers of the College Access and Success Division attended the National Council for Community and Education Partnerships (NCCEP) Capacity Building Workshop in New York City.  Also in attendance were site coordinators and school staff from the GEAR UP TN grant. Duane Gregg presented on his role as a GEAR UP TN regional coordinator and Courtney Rogers presented on effective messaging strategies for GEAR UP professionals.

Presentation to Lipscomb University Bridges Program

On Wednesday, Kate Derrick presented to Lipscomb Bridges, a leadership development group at Lipscomb University. The presentation focused on the Drive to 55 and early outcomes of programs such as Tennessee Promise, Tennessee Reconnect, and LEAP. The talk also covered how the State of Tennessee is tackling tough problems through innovation in higher education policy. Questions from the group included how private institutions can continue to grow collaborative efforts on statewide higher education initiatives.

Tennessee Conference of Graduate Schools

On Wednesday, Dr. Pam Knox attended the 2017 Spring Meeting of the Tennessee Conference of Graduate Schools (TCGS) held at the Downtown Nashville Sheraton.  The meeting was held in conjunction with Graduate Education Week in Tennessee, February 6-10.  In addition to the Graduate Student Posters on the Hill session held at the Legislative Plaza, a number of legislators attended a luncheon and presentation entitled Tennessee Graduate Schools:  Building the Workforce for the Future by Dr. Don Thomason, Graduate Dean at UT Health Sciences Center. Kyra Bryant of Tennessee State University was awarded the 2017 TCGS Master’s Thesis Award for her thesis entitled The Rise and Fall of the Drag Coefficient in Wind Stress Calculations for Hurricane Wind Speeds with a Case Study.

Tennessee Reconnect Community Meeting at Columbia State

On Wednesday, the Adult Learner Initiatives team participated in an event hosted by Columbia State Community College focused on the partnerships between Columbia State and the three Tennessee Reconnect Communities (TRCs) in their service area. This was the first meeting of its kind, pioneered by the community college. The participants were engaged in questions of process and communication between the TRCs and the college, and this event was the first of several planned events of this nature.

Mary Laphen Joins Adult Learner Initiatives Team

The Adult Learner Initiatives team would like to welcome Mary Laphen as the new Tennessee Reconnect Community Network Director. She has worked at THEC since 2013 in the Office of P-16 Initiatives as the Statewide Services Coordinator. In this role, she led the statewide Path to College events and provided technical assistance to over 300 schools and organizations. She helped organize professional development for the state’s GEAR UP TN educators, organized summer college access events and school counselor meetings. Most recently she helped to organize and facilitate the TN FAFSA Frenzy effort across the state focused on providing information to high school staff. Mary has also spent time as a college adviser for the National College Advising Corps. While in college in Pennsylvania, she directed community development and poverty education programming. Mary completed her Master’s at Vanderbilt University in Higher Education Administration. The Adult Learner Initiatives team looks forward to having Mary as part of their team.

Tennessee News Reports and Releases

·         Advise TN counselors join county school system | The Greeneville Sun

·         City will consider $2.5M Walters State funding request | The Greeneville Sun

·         Elizabethton Library provides starting point to college | Johnson City Press (features Tennessee Reconnect Communities)

·         New free tuition plan spurs another shift for Tennessee colleges | The Tennessean

·         Students continue pursuit of Tennessee Promise | Columbia Daily Herald (features quotes from Kate Derrick)

·         Tennessee Promise inspires national trend | The Tennessean (features quotes from Mike Krause)

National News and Reports

·         Colleges develop new resources to support veteran success on campus | Education Dive

·         The Governor that’s making free tuition happen | Education Commission of the States (focuses on Governor Haslam and the Drive to 55)

·         Ground-level support helps solve FAFSA ‘riddle’ | Diverse Issues in Higher Education

·         The simple way to keep struggling college students in check | NationSwell

·         State support up 3.4% | Inside Higher Ed

·         Tennessee could be the first state to offer free community college to all | Business Insider (focuses on proposal for Tennessee Reconnect Act)

·         Undergraduate Degree Earners Report | National Student Clearinghouse Research Center

·         Why apprenticeships are taking off | City Lab from The Atlantic

clockMonday, February 06, 2017
Weekly Update 3 February, 2016 (Mike Krause)   

Governor Bill Haslam Delivers State of the State Address

On Monday evening, Governor Bill Haslam delivered his annual State of the State address. During his remarks, the Governor emphasized the importance of postsecondary educational attainment in Tennessee. Among the legislative proposals he announced in the speech was an outline of the Tennessee Reconnect grant, which would provide two-years, tuition-free at a community college for adults who do not have an associate degree or above. If the proposal passes, Tennessee would become the first state in the nation to provide statewide access to a tuition-free associate degree or technical certificate.

Governor Haslam also released his proposed budget for the 2017-18 fiscal year. The budget included an operating improvement of $25 million in funding productivity increases, as well as $30.1 million for salary increases at public institutions. The Governor also recommended recurring appropriations for higher education of $1.453 billion. The proposed budget also recommended funding all 12 capital outlay projects recommended by THEC, plus one additional project, totaling over $340 million, as well as $131.4 million for capital maintenance.

Information on the Governor’s speech and recommended budget is available here, while details on his Tennessee Reconnect proposal are available here.

Tennessee Promise Year 2 Numbers

On Thursday, THEC released data regarding Tennessee Promise enrollment for Fall 2016. The data showed that since the program’s inception, over 33,000 students have enrolled in college through Tennessee Promise. The second Tennessee Promise cohort included 16,790 students, an increase of nearly 500 students from the prior year. Additionally, the scholarship’s first cohort, who entered in Fall 2015, had a year-over-year retention rate of 63%. Of the 10,236 students that returned to postsecondary education, 6,505 re-enrolled using the Tennessee Promise scholarship. The retention rate for Tennessee Promise students is similar to retention rates seen prior to the scholarship’s implementation. This signals a strong outlook for the scholarship program showing that, as enrollment increases, retention has held steady. A summary of the data is attached and a press release is available here.

FOCUS Board Confirmation Process

On Tuesday and Wednesday, Governor Haslam’s appointees to the boards of East Tennessee State University, Middle Tennessee State University, and the University of Memphis sat before the House and Senate Education Committees.  The members of all three boards were recommended for confirmation.  The process will repeat next week with Austin Peay State University, Tennessee Technological University, and Tennessee State University nominees appearing before the committees.  If approved, the resolutions for all six boards will then be sent to the General Assembly for a final vote to confirm.

LEAP Site Visit to Cleveland

Last week, Curt Johnston and Kate Derrick traveled to Cleveland, Tennessee for a LEAP site visit at Cleveland High School and Walker Valley High School. They were joined on the trip by Senate Majority Leader Mark Norris (R – Collierville) and Representative Dan Howell (R – Georgetown). During the visit, each high school provided tours of their CTE facilities that included equipment funded through the LEAP grant. At Cleveland High School, this included a student demonstration of a FANUC robot donated to the school by Gestamp. Both high schools are part of the Regional Apprenticeship Preparedness Program (RAPP) LEAP 1.0 project. The visit was covered by Chattanooga CBS affiliate WDEF, and the Cleveland Daily Banner.

Institutional Outcome Improvement Fund Grant Site Visit

Last week, the fiscal policy team made a site visits to Cleveland State Community College to discuss the campus’s progress on its 2016 Institutional Outcome Improvement Fund (IOIF) grant.  Awarded through a competitive grant proposal process in the summer of 2016, IOIF grants will distribute $800,000 in non-recurring funds to three community colleges and three universities to aid these institutions as they implement programs and policies that address deficiencies in funding formula outcome production. Cleveland State Community Colleges is utilizing its IOIF grant to centralize its student success interventions in a Student Success Center. The institution is also utilizing consultant services to train faculty and staff on early alert, degree pathway and other intervention systems to promote student success. THEC staff are committed to visiting each grant recipient during the two-year grant cycle. More information about the recipients of the Institutional Outcome Improvement Fund grants can be found here.

Your Skills Your Future Kickoff

Last Friday, Curt Johnston attended the kickoff event for the Cleveland-Bradley Chamber’s new workforce and education advising initiative, Your Skills Your Future (YSYF). The initiative includes a new online platform that will serve students and adults in Bradley County as they research individual career pathways and postsecondary training options that are available in the local area. The YSYF platform was funded through private donations and provides students, parents, and educators with resources that include career exploration videos, occupational forecasts, regional postsecondary options, financial aid and test preparation modules, career interest quizzes, and interviewing tips. The tool can be accessed at

Tennessee Reconnect Coverage

Board of Regents officials praise Haslam’s plan for free adult education | The Chattanoogan

Community college students react to proposed expansion of Tennessee Reconnect | WDEF (Chattanooga CBS affiliate)

Editorial: Haslam again brings education to the forefront | Knoxville News Sentinel

Editorial: Tennessee is becoming a leader in higher education | Johnson City Press

Expanding Tennessee Reconnect program could boost community college enrollment and workforce | WRCB (Chattanooga NBC affiliate)

Free tuition already changing lives of TN adults | WBIR (Knoxville NBC affiliate)

In quest to get adults to finish degrees, Tennessee officials say cost is just half the problem | WPLN/Nashville Public Radio (features quotes from Mike Krause)

Tennessee governor seeks free community college for all adults | National Public Radio

Tennessee Reconnect puts college in reach of adult students | The Tennessean (features overview of proposal from Mike Krause)

Tennessee plans to expand free 2-year tuition to all adults | Inside Higher Ed

Tennessee, Take a Bow | Inside Higher Ed

Tennessee News Reports and Releases

College readiness in the spotlight on new school report card | The Tennessean

Tennessee Promise grows enrollment, has 63 percent retention rate | Knoxville News Sentinel (includes quote from Mike Krause)

What new Tennessee Promise data says about how free community college is working | WPLN/Nashville Public Radio

National News and Reports

America’s 10 toughest jobs to fill in 2017 | CBS Money Watch

Dispelling the myth of underemployed college graduates | Forbes

Most colleges enroll many students who aren’t prepared for higher education | The Hechinger Report

Most predictive factors of post-graduation wages | The Atlantic

Top 10 Higher Education State Policy Issues for 2017 | American Association of State Colleges and Universities

Unpacking Relationships: Instruction and student outcomes | American Council on Education

clockFriday, January 20, 2017
Weekly Update 20 January, 2016 (Mike Krause)   

New Addition to the THEC Family

THEC’s Director of Postsecondary Completion Initiatives Maryann Rainey and her husband Rian welcomed their son Augustine Terry Rainey this morning at 9:27 am. Augustine weighed in at 6 lbs 13 oz and measured 19.75 inches. Mother and son are both healthy and happy. Our warmest congratulations to the Rainey family!

FOCUS Transition Task Force

On Tuesday, Governor Haslam convened the Transition Task Force comprised of THEC staff, Chancellors, presidents from the locally governed universities and the University of Tennessee system, and legislative leaders to work through next steps of FOCUS implementation.  The timeline for new boards will commence with confirmation hearings before the House and Senate Education Committees in two groups: East Tennessee State University, Middle Tennessee State University, and the University of Memphis on January 31 and February 1 and Austin Peay State University, Tennessee State University, and Tennessee Technological University on February 7-8.  Dates for board orientation and first meetings have been set for each campus during the last two weeks of March.  The group also worked through process details for internal audit, capital project management, mission statements, and data.       

University of North Carolina Visits to Learn about Tennessee Reconnect

This Tuesday and Wednesday, THEC staff met with representatives from the University of North Carolina General Administration to discuss Tennessee’s efforts to better serve adult learners. The conversation focused on THEC’s work establishing Tennessee Reconnect Communities, and Tennessee Reconnect’s overall role in supporting the Drive to 55. The representatives intend to use information gathered from the meeting to inform future work in support of adult learners in North Carolina.  Jessica Gibson, Kevin Bradley, Maryann Rainey, Kate Derrick,  Russ Deaton, Emily House, and David Wright all participated in the meeting.

UTK Supply Chain Management, Master of Science (MS) Site Visit

On Thursday, Betty Dandridge Johnson and Pam Knox participated in a site visit at UT Knoxville for the proposed Supply Chain Management, MS program.  The proposed program uses a cohort model where student study for one semester at Kuhne Logistics University (Hamburg, Germany) and Tongji University (Shanghai, China).  This international experience will provide students with a unique opportunity to study supply chain management.

The proposed program was evaluated by Dr. Thomas Goldsby, Professor of Logistics at The Ohio State University.  Dr. Goldsby will provide a report based on the proposal and site visit and make a determination of program approval.  Contingent upon Dr. Goldsby’s recommendation, the program may be considered for approval by UT and THEC.

2017 County Profiles Available

THEC posted the 2017 Higher Education County Profiles this week. The profiles highlight data and programmatic information related to THEC and TSAC for all 95 counties in the state. The profiles include data on educational attainment for each county, rates of TELS and TSAA recipients, data on Tennessee Promise applicants, and benchmarks for each county to aid in reaching the statewide goals of the Drive to 55. The profiles also include the ways in which THEC and THEC provide support to each county, including summaries of visits from TSAC outreach specialists, grants that provide service in each county, and programmatic efforts underway across the state. The updated 2017 profiles are available on the THEC website.

2017 Academic Supply & Occupational Demand Report

On Tuesday, THEC released the 2017 Academic Supply & Occupational Demand in Tennessee: Workforce Needs and Degree Production Report. Prepared in collaboration with the Department of Labor and Workforce Development, this report provides projections of postsecondary degrees to be awarded by Tennessee institutions and links the projections to Tennessee’s workforce demands to determine whether postsecondary institutions are meeting the needs of employers across the state. Career areas with the highest projected demand through 2024 are selling and sales management, manufacturing/production, administrative support, and specialized business functions such as banking, finance, and communications development. The full report is available on the THEC website.

Tennessee News Reports and Releases

Chancellor-elect Davenport visits UT Knoxville campus | Knoxville News Sentinel

Motlow might see more funding | The Murfreesboro Post

Students across TBR system participate in MLK Day of Service projects | Tennessee Board of Regents

Veteran Reconnect grant to fund new services at UT Martin | KFVS-TV (CBS affiliate for Western Kentucky, Southern Illinois, and Southeastern Missouri)

National News and Reports

Bill will allow 529 plan to pay off student loans | CNBC

New loan discharges | Inside Higher Ed

State of the States: A look back | Education Commission of the States

R.I. students to get free tuition for 2 years at state colleges, under Raimondo budget | Providence Journal

Three questions for higher education | Inside Higher Ed