Amy West recognized by SHRM

Amy West, Director of Human Resources at JSCC, was recognized at the Tennessee conference for the Society of Human Resource Management (SHRM) during its annual conference in Sevierville on September 19. West, along with other HR directors across the state, received the HR Professional Excellence Award.

The HR Professional Excellence Award, which began in 2000 and presented by the SHRM Tennessee State Council, recognizes contributions to the Human Resource Profession by any HR Professional working in the state of Tennessee. Nominees for the award are considered based on service to the chapter, the HR profession, the community, and their professional history.

West has been the director of human resources at Jackson State since 2011. She represents and supports the college in a number of capacities including the administrator of access and diversity initiatives, Title IX compliance, and active participation in the Jackson Chamber and other area clubs and organizations.

29th Annual WTH Foundation Charity Gala Award Recipients Announced

The West Tennessee Healthcare Foundation recently announced this year’s class of Charity Gala award recipients to be recognized at the Charity Gala on Saturday, November 10. Among this year’s honorees is our very own Dr. Allana Hamilton who will receive the Jackson Award for her service to the community in the field of education.

The Jackson Awards were established by the Foundation in 2006 as a means to honor those in our community who exemplify the truest qualities of a leader. The awards are presented to individuals who have served in one of six areas: the arts, community service, education, healthcare, leadership, or volunteer service. This year’s recipients are as follows:

Melinda Hearn Reid – The Arts

Tammy Buchanan – Community Service

Dr. Allana Hamilton – Education

Dr. David Roberts – Healthcare

Gerald “Buster” Ferguson – Leadership

Dan Brooks – Volunteer Service

In addition to the Jackson Awards, the WTH Foundation also presents the Dr. A. Barnett Scott Service Award and The Tigrett Award. The recipient of this year’s Scott Service Award is Lee Gaugh. Bill and Carol Latimer will be presented the Tigrett Award.

The Charity Gala is the largest annual fundraiser hosted by the WTH Foundation each November. The Charity Gala includes a cocktail reception, silent auction, seated dinner, awards presentations, live music, and dancing. Proceeds from the event benefit Ayers Children’s Medical Center and Kirkland Cancer Center. Last year, the event raised $215,000 and has come to be recognized as one of West Tennessee’s “most elegant events.”

To purchase tickets for the Charity Gala, visit or call the Foundation at (731)984-2140.

Radiologic Technology students achieve 100 percent pass rate on national certification exam

Students in Jackson State’s Radiologic Technology Program achieved a 100 percent pass rate in the most recent semester, a testament to the program’s longevity and success.

Each of the 21 students who finished the program in August passed the national certification exam on his or her first attempt. The program has produced a 100 percent pass rate on first attempt in six of the last eight years.

“We strive for 100 percent every year,” said Kim Benson, Program Director and Associate Professor for Radiography. “It says to a prospective student that the program is doing what it is designed to do. It is teaching you the skills you need to become an entry-level radiographer.”

Success can be attributed to the program’s faculty, hospital affiliations, and the instructors and technologists who work beside students for more than 1,700 of their required clinical hours.

Students also work hard to pass the certification exam on the first attempt so they can begin their careers.

“The students realize this is their chosen profession, therefore they work diligently to succeed,” Benson said.

When Jackson State’s Radiologic Technology Program began in 1969, it was the first college-based associate degree radiography program in Tennessee and the third in the United States. It was formed to meet a growing need of X-ray technologists to serve West Tennessee. At the time, most people in the profession worked in larger cities.

The program has consistently produced competent graduates who remain in the area as part of the health care workforce. And last year, students moved into the new Jim and Janet Ayers Center for Health Sciences, which has new equipment with the latest technology that mirrors what students will use in the workplace.

The program received the most advanced X-ray equipment of any educational system in Tennessee, Benson said. Besides a first-generation digital X-ray unit that students had been using, the lab now has a second-generation digital X-ray unit, as well as two mobile X-ray units. The equipment is the same, if not more advanced, than what students will encounter in a clinical setting.

“It has made a world of difference,” Benson said. “They’re going to be well prepared in the workforce because of the equipment we have here.”

The success of radiography students at Jackson State is not uncommon in other programs. In 2017, every student who graduated from the school’s nursing program passed the National Council Licensure Examination on his or her first attempt. The achievement earned praise from the Tennessee Board of Nursing.

Jackson State Community College provides accessible learning opportunities that enhance the lives of individuals, strengthen the workforce and empower the diverse communities of West Tennessee. The institution offers traditional and contemporary associate degrees, certificates, continuing education and enrichment, and college-readiness programs.

Bagels and Bluegrass set for October 13 at JSCC

The 17th Annual Bagels and Bluegrass Bicycle Century Tour and 5K is set for Saturday, Oct. 13 at Jackson State Community College. The event includes bicycle road tours varying in length from 14 to 100 miles. Proceeds from the event will be donated to the Dr. Kent Jones Scholarship Fund at JSCC and Friends of Chickasaw and Pinson Mounds State Parks.

The routes on the Bagels and Bluegrass Bicycle Century Tour are designed for beginners to advanced riders. There are 14-, 32-, 62- and 100-mile routes. The 100-mile century route will take cyclists through Chickasaw and Pinson Mounds State Parks. For completing this route, cyclists will receive a commemorative patch.

New this year is the addition of a 5K run. “There have been several requests to add a run to this event,” said event organizer Mary Beth Hopper. “This allows for there to be more inclusion for friends and family members that don’t ride. It’s also an excellent opportunity to grow this long-standing annual event.”

Bagels and Bluegrass was started by former surgeon and avid cyclist Dr. Kent Jones. In its second year, Jones made the decision to move the event to Jackson State Community College and to have most of the proceeds from the event support scholarships for non-traditional students. A special scholarship fund named for Dr. Jones was created this year in honor of his years of service and dedication to the college.

Registration for the event begins at 7 a.m. in the lobby of the Gymnasium at Jackson State. There will be a welcome ceremony beginning at 7:45 a.m. and cyclists will begin the tour at 8 a.m. The 5K run will start at 8:30 a.m. The fee for the ride is $25 in advance and $30 the day of the event. Families can participate together on the 14-mile family fun ride for $35 per family. The fee for the 5K run is $20 per runner.

The registration fee includes a free breakfast and lunch, t-shirts for the first 100 registrants, and a goody bag. Each participant is also eligible for a door prize drawing. Registration form, maps and more details are available at

For more information about the Bagels and Bluegrass Bicycle Century Tour and 5K event go to or call 731-616-7474.

UT Martin and JSCC Sign Dual Admission Partnership

Representatives from Jackson State Community College and UT Martin signed a dual admission partnership (DAP) agreement as a continuation of the partnership between the two colleges on Monday, September 10, 2018. The event took place on Jackson State’s main campus in the McWherter Building lobby.

“Jackson State Community College has an excellent partnership with UT Martin, and we are pleased to continue this partnership with a dual admission agreement,” said Dr. Allana Hamilton, JSCC president. “This partnership is a tremendous opportunity for students to complete their degree at both the associate and baccalaureate levels.”

The partnership will offer students a structured, guaranteed pathway for attaining a four-year bachelor’s degree by providing a seamless and guaranteed transition from a JSCC associate’s degree program to a UT bachelor’s degree program. UTM will also guarantee admission to eligible JSCC students.

JSCC students will have access to both JSCC and UTM faculty and staff throughout their tenure in the DAP, including access to advising, support services, library services, academic and computer labs, career services, and sporting and cultural events.

The DAP will provide an opportunity for students to save money and avoid costly student loans by enrolling for their first two years at a community college with lower tuition and fees as well as the ability to take advantage of state incentives available such as Tennessee Promise and Tennessee Reconnect.

“We are excited about this partnership with Jackson State Community College,” said Dr. Keith Carver, UT Martin chancellor. “Both UT Martin and Jackson State are committed to driving access and completion for this region, and this agreement solidifies a smooth, clearly-defined path for students all across west Tennessee.”