Maximum 8-year award received by JSCC Radiography

After its meeting in March, the Joint Review Committee on Education in Radiologic Technology (JRCERT) extended the maximum accreditation award of 8 years to the radiography program at Jackson State Community College. This is a 3-year extension to the 5-year term.

The accreditation process began with the submission of a self-study in July, 2014. The second part of the process was an onsite evaluation in April, 2015. The program received 5 years of continuing education with a progress report due in January, 2016. Due to the merits of the program, JRCERT made the decision in March to extend the award an additional 3 years. As a result, the JSCC program will not go through this process again until 2023.

Beginning in 1968, the radiography program was the first allied health program to be instituted at JSCC. According to the program’s first director, Mrs. Neta McKnight, the program at Jackson State was the first radiography program east of the Mississippi River to offer an associates degree in this field. “We were in uncharted territory and pioneers back then,” she explained.

Current program director, Kim Todd states, “I am so proud to be a part of the [radiography] program here at Jackson State. Our emphasis has always been on providing our students with the knowledge and tools they need to provide patients with the highest level of care.”

“The extension awarded by JRCERT really validates what we do here at Jackson State,” Todd continues. “The process of accreditation can be grueling, but an outcome such as this is a win for everyone involved and makes it all worthwhile. It is a team effort that could not occur without the support of the radiography faculty, our students, and the strong commitment of our affiliate hospital radiology staff and administration”

Dr. Tom Pigg, dean of allied health, said that radiography has long been at the forefront of the health-related programs at JSCC. “The success of radiography from the very beginning has paved the way for the array of programs offered at the college today.”

Todd also noted that JRCERT is the only agency recognized by the United States Department of Education and the Council for Higher Education Accreditation, for the accreditation of traditional and distance educational programs in radiography, radiation therapy, magnetic resonance, and medical dosimetry.

JSCC students work with a number of partnering facilities that provide hands-on training. These partners include Jackson-Madison County General Hospital, Tennova Dyersburg Regional, Baptist Memorial Hospital – Union City, and Henry County Medical Center. “The support of these organizations has been and continues to be paramount to the success of our programs here at the college,” Todd states.

To learn more about radiography and other allied health programs at JSCC, visit or call (731) 425-2612.

JSCC’s Blanding Announces Retirement

In a surprise email announcement to faculty and staff, Jackson State Community College President Bruce Blanding advised everyone that he plans to retire effective at the end of December 2016.

Blanding has served in a variety of roles with community colleges since 1971. He came to JSCC as president in 2004.

In his letter to the campus, Blanding noted that he had originally intended to make this announcement at fall in-service in August. As plans for this year’s commencement were being made, he began reflecting on his time in community college systems.

“This final commencement is a very special time for me,” Blanding explains. “The mission of community colleges is very near and dear to my heart. Since my retirement and experience will be at the core of my speech at the graduation ceremony, it is essential to let everyone know now.”

Blanding notes that TBR will begin the search process for a new president when they convene in September. “I am confident,” he stated in his message, “that, together, you and the new president will continue Jackson State Community College’s journey to help as many people as you can to achieve their dream.”

HPV Epidemic Film Screening at JSCC

The Jackson State Community College department of nursing will host a screening of the film Someone You Love: The HPV Epidemic on Tuesday, April 12. The event will be located in the McWherter Center at the corner of F.E. Wright Drive and North Parkway and will run from 12 to 3 p.m.

JSCC Nursing is hosting this event in partnership with Cervical Cancer-Free Tennessee, Tennessee Dept. of Health, American Cancer Society, and Tennessee Cancer Coalition. It is hoped that the event will bring attention to this growing and commonplace epidemic.

Anyone wanting to learn more about HPV viruses is welcomed to attend. Dr. Christopher Welsch with the Jackson Clinic will be the featured speaker at the event. Attendees will have the opportunity to discuss issues pertaining to HPV.

According to the CDC, About 79 million Americans are currently infected with human papillomavirus (HPV). About 14 million people become newly infected each year. HPV is so common that most sexually-active men and women will get at least one type of HPV at some point in their lives.

HPV is a group of more than 150 related viruses. Each HPV virus in this large group is given a number which is called its HPV type. Many people with HPV do not know they are infected and may only find out once they’ve developed more serious problems from HPV, such as cancers. Vaccines can prevent the most common types of HPV infection and are available for both males and females.

For additional information about the event, contact JSCC Nursing at (731) 425-2622.

New Mini Terms Provide Flexibility, Options

Summer Term Chart
Beginning this May, Jackson State Community College will offer a new 3-week May term and three additional 3-week terms over the course of the summer. The new mini terms will allow students to complete a regular 3-semester-hour course in just 3 weeks.

“This is a big deal for all of our students,” explains Dr. Larry Bailey, VP of Academic Affairs. “This allows students to quickly complete pre-requisite courses and to reach their goals sooner.” During the summer months, many students traditionally take a course or two to catch up. “This will allow students to quickly get this done and still have sufficient time off to enjoy the summer break,” Bailey said.

According to Bailey, the primary decision to offer the mini term comes from the need to better serve the non-traditional student. “We are working diligently to make classes and programs more accessible to the older student. These students have a variety of things going on that make a ‘regular’ class schedule less feasible,” he said.

The summer term will now consist of a regular 10-week term, two 5-week terms, and three 3-week terms. Additionally, there will be a new 3-week May term created to essentially create four successive 3-week terms for the summer.

Bailey continues by stating that there are plans to create the 3-week sub-term structure during the regular academic year. “This would give our students a lot of flexibility with their class schedules and will allow us to better serve their needs.”

With the educational challenges presented by the governor’s Drive to 55 initiative, Jackson State is developing ways to better respond to the needs of students. By doing this, the college’s goal is to help ensure that citizens without post-secondary credentials are able to get one. “We are working to break down those barriers that keep people from achieving their dreams,” Bailey stated.

Open registration for the summer and fall terms begins April 25. Anyone interested in attending should contact the admissions office at (731) 425-8844.

JSCC to Host Career, Job Fair

Jackson State Community College will host its annual career fair on Wednesday, April 13. The event is for students and alumni, but this year the public is also invited to attend. The event will be held in the gym on the college’s main campus from 9 a.m. to 12 p.m.

A career/job fair is held each spring semester to give students a chance to meet with potential employers. This year more than 40 area companies will be on hand to talk with students and alumni about careers and employment opportunities available in their organizations.

The TN Career Coach will be onsite at this year’s event. The Coach is staffed with Career Specialists that can provide assistance to job seekers with job searching, resumes, interviewing, as well as providing information about training/education opportunities.

JSCC coordinator of placement and career services, Annette Deaton encourages anyone coming to the event should “dress for success” and bring their resumes with them. Many potential employers will be doing on-the-spot interviews.

The Placement Services office is available to assist both students and alumni with preparing their resumes. Anyone interested in in learning more about the event should contact Annette Deaton at 731-424-3520 ext. 50315 or email her at

Irish Band, Brock McGuire, returns to JSCC for free concert

Internationally recognized Irish folk band Brock McGuire is scheduled to appear at Jackson State Community College on Tuesday, April 19 at 6:30 p.m. in the college’s Ayers Auditorium. The performance is free and open to the public.

The band first performed on campus last September during International Week at JSCC. The band is returning to campus this spring as part of a short US tour. Mary Wadley, JSCC professor and International Education sponsor, stated that the group had very popular appeal with both students and staff during the fall performance. “We are so excited to have them with us once again,” she says.

The Brock McGuire Band performs on occasion with symphonies and has even performed with bluegrass great Ricky Skaggs on the stage of the Grand Ole Opry. The band has received accolades such as “Instrumental Band of the Decade” from Irish American News and was recipient of a 5-star “Top of the World” award from the prestigious world music magazine Songlines.

Brock McGuire is fronted by Moving Cloud founding members Paul Brock and Manus McGuire. Residing in County Clare, button accordionist and melodeonist Paul Brock and fiddler Manus McGuire are two of Ireland’s most celebrated traditional musicians. Returning with the band is special guest member David Culley. Culley is a multi-talented musician and also adds the element of traditional Irish dance to their repertoire.

As they did in the fall semester, the band will conduct two master classes for students in music appreciation and humanities. As Wadley explains, “These types of experiences add so much more depth to the educational experience for our students. They have the opportunity to see and experience opposed to just reading and hearing about it third hand.”

For more information regarding this performance or other opportunities in international education at JSCC, contact Mary Wadley at 731-424-3520 ext. 50252 or email her at