LIFELINE Battle of the Colleges is Back!

During the month of September, JSCC’s blood drive battle against area colleges will be held at Lifeline Blood Services at 183 Sterling Farm Drive. Appointments are preferred and can be made by calling 731-427-4431. Remember, you can also complete the medical questionnaire on the day you go to donate. Additionally, LIFELINE is still doing free antibody checks for COVID-19.

Please, please announce and encourage students, family members, friends, etc. to all go donate during September to help support JSCC. There will be a sign-in sheet for the college your wish to represent. We can make a difference in the community….and it’s always nice to be able to keep the trophy on our campus too.

“Not having the event on JSCC’s campus will make this the most difficult challenge yet,” said Leah Gray, JSCC blood drive organizer. “It will test our strength and motivation, but I know that we will rise to the challenge and keep the trophy on JSCC’s campus.”

If you have any questions, contact Leah Gray at lgray@jscc.edu. Thank you in advance for your donation!

Computer specifications for online classes at JSCC

For students wanting to purchase a computer for the fall semester, the Office of Information Technology at JSCC has posted the minimum requirements of computer equipment needed for online classes at the college.

  • Web Camera
  • Microphone
  • 8 GB RAM minimum
  • Intel Core i5 processor or faster.

Please note that a Google Chromebook is NOT compatible and will not work with the software necessary to take online classes at JSCC. Microsoft Office applications are available to JSCC students free of charge while they are enrolled at the college. Please send any questions about equipment compatibility to helpdesk@jscc.edu.

Six JSCC athletes named NJCAA Academic All-Americans

The National Junior College Athletic Association (NJCAA) recently announced student athletes who were ranked as NJCAA Academic All-Americans. Among the 143 students from the Tennessee Community College Athletic Association (TCCAA) receiving this designation are 6 Jackson State Community College athletes.

The designations for the NJCAA All-Academic Awards are ranked by the following criteria:
NJCAA All-American First Team – 4.0 GPA
NJCAA All-American Second Team – 3.80-3.99 GPA
NJCAA All-American Third Team – 3.60-3.79 GPA

Congratulations to Jackson State Community College Green Jay NJCAA Academic All-Americans:

Grant Crihfield, Baseball, First Team
Taylor Sharpe, Basketball (W), Third Team
Megan Bates, Softball, Third Team
Caroline Lane, Softball, Third Team
Shayla Phillips, Softball, Third Team

JSCC announces final plans for fall semester

The administration of Jackson State Community College has announced three versions of instruction that will be utilized during the fall semester. Faculty will use the three options to provide the high-quality learning experience Jackson State students expect while promoting a safe environment for students and employees. The three options include online classes, FLEX, and hybrid.

FLEX – Classes labeled FLEX will be taught at scheduled times through live-streaming using videoconferencing software (such as Zoom) provided by the college. Classes will meet online at scheduled days and times. Students will submit assignments and will have access to class materials through D2L (eLearn). FLEX classes are designed for those students who prefer a more traditional face-to-face classroom experience. Students will be able to talk with their professors, participate in class discussions, and enjoy group activities.

Online – Classes labeled Online are taught through the D2L (eLearn) system. Students can log in and complete assignments at times scheduled by the professor. Classes do not have assigned meeting days or times. Online classes are a great option for those students who cannot commit to attending class at a particular time. Students are able to work around job schedules and family responsibilities by completing coursework when it fits their schedule each week.

Hybrid – Classes labeled Hybrid will be taught using a combination of online or FLEX and small group settings on campus at scheduled days and times. Hybrid classes are designed for labs and skill-based courses (primarily limited to nursing, health sciences, engineering systems, organic chemistry, computer information technology) that require some in-person activities and training. The small-group settings will be conducted with required masks and appropriate distancing measures in place.

Registration for fall classes is available now, and students can apply for admission to the college by going to the admissions page at the Jackson State website,www.jscc.edu/apply, or by calling 731-425-8844. The fall term begins on August 24.

TSBDC Jackson celebrates local Rising Star award

On Tuesday, June 23, the TSBDC Jackson Center awarded the owners of LD2 Consignment and Jewelry the Rising Star award. Co-owners Leah and Lesley Daniel purchased the business in 2017 with the assistance and guidance of the TSBDC.

According to Monique Merriweather, director of the TSBDC Jackson Center, the business receiving this award has taken the advice and counsel offered to them by the TSBDC. The business has a well thought out business plan, a successful business model, and are profitable.

“Leah and Lesley have led the way in small business and are taking the Jackson area and surrounding counties by storm with their innovation and willingness to help others,” said Merriweather. “We are proud of their enthusiasm and accomplishments over the past 3 years and wish them continued success.”

In May 2017, Leah and Lesley Daniel, with the help of the TSBDC Center – Jackson State Community College, purchased the M&M Consignment Shop on Vann Drive, in Jackson, Tennessee. They were able to secure a $55,000 SBA loan and the seller financed the $10,000 balance. The store opened in August 2017 after completing all of the renovations themselves. Two new jobs were created and three jobs retained.

Within 6 months, the store became a destination and the name was changed to LD2 Consignment and Jewelry. Leah and Lesley spent considerable time changing the concept of the business by accepting only quality merchandise for consignment. It did not take long for them to build a strong customer base. The volume in 2018 was $285,000; in 2019 it was $375,000.

In September of 2019, Leah’s and Lesley’s success enabled them to fulfill a dream of opening a store in downtown Jackson. Their goal was to make this store so unique that it would inspire others to move into the downtown area. They renovated a building with a $12,000 equity investment and created LD2 Market Shoppes that offers booths to mostly home-based businesses.

The downtown “Shoppes” opened in November of 2019 with 28 vendors. Today, this number is in excess of 70 vendors with room to add more. LD2 also provides its vendors with business services by recording the sales and paying sales taxes for the businesses.

Eventually, the plan is to add a coffee shop and to create an environment where people can relax and hang out before or after shopping. Leah and Lesley are still excited at the prospects of their downtown venture and look forward to many years of growth in the area.

Spring 2020 Semester Honor Roll Announced

The Office of Admissions and Records at Jackson State Community College released the honor roll for the Spring 2020 semester. On the honor roll, there were 338 full-time students who achieved a quality point average over 3.00. There were 514 students who made the dean’s list by achieving a quality point average of 3.50 or better.

Due to the interruption of the spring semester by the COVID-19 virus, a large number of students were unable to complete their coursework during the regular term. These students were given an incomplete status with the opportunity to complete their classes during the month of June. Due to the unusual circumstances, the honor roll and dean’s list for spring will be addended in the near future to accommodate for this situation.

Honor Roll is reserved for students who are enrolled for twelve (12) or more hours of college-level work (Learning Support excluded) and who complete a semester’s work with a quality point average between 3.00 and 3.49.

Dean’s List is reserved for students who are enrolled for twelve (12) or more hours of college-level work and who complete a semester’s work with a quality point average between 3.50 and 4.00.

JSCC to offer classes in hybrid, FLEX format for fall semester

For the fall semester, classes at Jackson State Community College will be taught in a FLEX format. This format will be a hybrid of both online and face-to-face components. Students will complete some work online and will also meet with faculty either in small group settings, via telecommunication platforms such as Zoom, or some combination of both. Students will be required to be available for coursework during the posted scheduled days and times.

According to Dr. Larry Bailey, Vice President of Academic Affairs, the intent is to have a FLEX component in all ground and hybrid instruction for both lectures and labs that allow for the use of asynchronous instruction such as Zoom, Blue Jeans, eLearn, or other online formats. “This will allow us to start classes and to meet at the already-scheduled times,” said Bailey. “This will provide for much of the structure and personal attention that our students want and need and will also allow us to maintain much smaller and more manageable groups in our classrooms.

Bailey explains that the new plan will not have students to meet for in-person classes during the first week of the semester to allow for faculty to divide the students into “attendance groups. For example, a class that meets on Tuesday and Thursday would have half of the students meet in person on Tuesday and the other half to meet in person on Thursday,” said Bailey. The other day would be met in an online format.

“Our students are already accustomed to utilizing the online technologies,” said Bailey, “and this new FLEX schedule will not be very far from what we currently practice.”

It is hoped that this plan will allow for the flexibility to meet the comfort levels of both students and faculty. Additionally, the FLEX schedule will allow for a consistent delivery method from the beginning and will also allow for a seamless transition in the event of another outbreak of the virus.

Courses offer insight into “Black experience” in America

Each fall, Jackson State Community College’s divisions of Communication and Humanities and Social and Behavioral Sciences offers HIST 2060: African American History and ENGL 2055: African American Literature, two courses that are particularly relevant to our social and cultural moment.

Professors Tammy Prater and Anna Esquivel feel that education is the best way to offer support and assist the community with understanding the current national crisis. “Students and community members may find themselves struggling to feel informed. Both of these courses offer an opportunity to understand our great American experiment in the context of Racial injustice,” said Prater.

“This is an opportunity to learn more about the Black experience in America and explore how Black arts, letters, theories, critiques, demonstrations, movements, inventions, leadership, and labor have shaped American society and democracy,” stated Esquivel.

Tammy Prater, Associate Professor of History, will teach African American History (HIST2060) that begins with the African experience before there were European colonies in North America. The course will explore the first Africans landing in North America in 1619 (one year before the Pilgrims) and follow them through lives of indentured servitude, then enslavement, and a continuous struggle for freedom and the rights of citizens. In a nation founded on the idea that “All men are created equal,” there will be an analysis of the continuing struggle for a nation to live up to that promise. The course will also explore the lives and works of Anthony Johnson, Denmark Vesey, Dred Scott, Frederick Douglass, Madame C.J. Walker, Ida B. Wells, A. Philip Randolph, Septima Clark, Emmet Till, The Scotsboro Boys, Angela Davis, Thurgood Marshall, and many others.

Anna Esquivel, Associate Professor of English, will teach a survey of African American Literature (ENGL2055), which emphasizes an exploration of African American literary identity through an examination of literary trends, themes, and historical and political contexts. In this course, we will ask questions such as: How do rap and hip-hop reflect the oral traditions of early African cultures? What do works by African American writers teach us about American culture, its history, and its politics? How do poetry, fiction, and non-fiction writing by African American writers reflect the inner lives of the artists as well as the cultural, social, and political environments in which they strive, thrive, and struggle? The course will explore the works of writers such as WEB DuBois, Anna Julia Cooper, James Weldon Johnson, Helene Johnson, Langston Hughes, James Baldwin, Amiri Baraka, Sonia Sanchez, Nikki Giovanni, Colson Whitehead, Audre Lorde, and many others.

There will be opportunities for the community to participate by reading common works and engaging in online discussions with the professors and the students of African American Literature and African American History. For more information, please email tprater2@jscc.edu and/or aesquivel@jscc.edu.

JSCC Faculty issue statement on diversity and social equity

As our nation reacts to the tragic deaths of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, and Ahmaud Arbery, Jackson State faculty acknowledge the pain that so many in our campus community are experiencing. Social and economic inequities that result from racial injustice create real and seemingly insurmountable barriers to learning for our students. As faculty, we know that educating students about the contributions Black people have made to American life and democracy is both empowering and critical to making change. The history of dissent and resistance to injustices led by people of color, and the recent movement that continues that work, make us a stronger nation and a better people.

Jackson State faculty educate a diverse group of students, and we remain committed to fostering a space of creativity, learning, questioning, and support on our campus. We encourage honest conversations and respectful relationships in our classrooms, and we believe in the power of community voices combining for the greater good. The fight for social equity is far from over, but the faculty at Jackson State Community College resolve to create the conditions under which all students can thrive.

JSCC administration commits to social equity amid social unrest

In light of the social unrest that is playing out across the country and the world, the administration of Jackson State Community College acknowledges and reaffirms our commitment to justice and believes that the institution needs to take a more active role in addressing the racial inequities that exist in the communities of West Tennessee. Dr. George Pimentel, the newly appointed president of Jackson State, sees this as a top priority as he assumes the leadership position on July 1.

“The death of George Floyd and the resulting public response has made the issue of social injustice in our society an undeniable reality,” said Pimentel. “We must open a dialogue in our campus communities, acknowledge the legacy of systemic racism, and commit ourselves to make Jackson State Community College a place where every member of our community feels truly welcomed.”

Pimentel states that he is committed to the creation of an environment that promotes racial literacy. “We will work to have open discussions in our classrooms and to create intentional spaces for students to discuss these issues,” said Pimentel. “We must do everything we can to eliminate the vestiges of racism from our institutions and society.”

As an Achieving the Dream institution, Jackson State has worked on the premise of creating equity for its students so that the dream of educational success can be a reality for all students. Dr. Pimentel notes that the ideal of social equity will now take precedence in helping our students achieve their dreams of educational success.