Regina Watkins appointed TBR Director of Veteran Enrollment & Benefits; newly created position to support veterans enrolling at Tennessee’s community & technical colleges

Regina Watkins appointed Director of Veteran Enrollment & Benefits

Regina Watkins has been appointed director of veteran enrollment and benefits at TBR – The College System of Tennessee. In this new role, Watkins will work directly with the System’s 13 community colleges and 24 Tennessee Colleges of Applied Technology across the state to support their School Certifying Officers (SCOs) in administering veteran education benefits. 

As The College System of Tennessee pursues its mission of student success and workforce development, it realizes veterans have prior expertise that play a critical role in filling the state’s need for a skilled workforce – a goal that Watkins is ready to take on in her new position, along with support from SCOs across the System.

“Our veterans provide a unique and valuable resource to Tennessee’s workforce,” Watkins states. “Not only are they typically experienced in diverse settings and adaptable to change, but they exhibit high levels of resiliency and possess advanced technical training sought out by employers. We’ve made sure that our colleges have veteran support staff to provide one-on-one assistance in the entire educational process - including enrollment, financial aid, degree and career counseling and job placement.”

Serving as the primary contact for veterans and their dependents, Watkins will provide support and access to benefit information; develop and process claims with the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs; and assist veterans with enrollment at Tennessee’s community and technical colleges. 

Watkins brings a wealth of knowledge and leadership to the System, as she previously served over 20 years providing administrative and operational leadership to support the Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University Worldwide - Ft. Campbell Campus military and veterans affairs office.

Watkins is a founding board member of the Mid South Advisory Council on Military Education (ACME), a non-profit advisory board that supports the advancement of education for active duty, veterans, and military family members. During her service as a Mid South ACME board member from 2013 to 2017, she planned and executed annual symposiums and military education fairs and sponsored and coordinated the Tennessee National Guard Education Summit.

She earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in Merchandising from Lambuth University, a Master of Public Administration from Murray State University in Murray, Kentucky, and a Master of Science degree in Project Management from Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University Worldwide - Ft. Campbell Campus. In addition, Watkins earned Six Sigma Green Belt Certification and Lean Six Sigma Master Black Belt Certification, both from Villanova University in Pennsylvania, and served an Education Practicum at Empire State College at Ft. Drum, New York. She is currently pursuing a Doctor of Business Administration in Organizational Leadership from Northcentral University in San Diego, California.

All 13 Tennessee community colleges are certified VETS Campuses, a state program that recognizes their commitment to services that help veterans succeed in pursuing their education.

The College System of Tennessee is the state’s largest public higher education system, with 13 community colleges, 27 colleges of applied technology and the online TN eCampus serving approximately 140,000 students. The system is governed by the Tennessee Board of Regents.