TBR reviews efficiencies and approves reverse transfer program, strategic plan

Members of the Tennessee Board of Regents discussed improved efficiencies within the Tennessee’s Community College System, approved a plan to offer reverse transfer degrees, and endorsed the system-wide 2015-2025 strategic plan, among other actions at its quarterly meeting in Nashville today.

The meeting began with a Skype link to two Roane State Community College faculty members who would later in the day set the world record for the longest time living underwater. Board members spoke with biologists Bruce Cantrell and Jessica Fain, who have spent almost 10 weeks in the ocean at an underwater habitat. There they’ve taught classes for their Roane State students and hosted weekly educational video sessions called Classroom Under the Sea. Board members learned program has garnered international attention and focused attention on engaging students’ interest in science.

The Board heard a report about a project to improve efficiencies among the 13 community colleges by sharing best practices and adopting system-wide common business processes. While the project is ongoing, the result has already shown a cost savings of almost $3 million, money that is being reinvested in programs to support student success.

Members approved a policy on reverse transfers, a program to allow academic credits earned at a university to be transferred back to the community college where a student began studies once requirements are met for an associate degree.

The system-wide 2015-25 Strategic Plan was approved, along with the 2014-15 October revised budget, the search criteria for the next president of Southwest Tennessee Community College, and the University of Memphis plan to increase its minimum wage to $10.10 an hour.

New degree programs approved include a Master of Science in Finance at Middle Tennessee State University, an Associate of Applied Science in Hospitality and Tourism Management at Chattanooga State Community College, and an Associate of Applied Science in Welding Technology at Pellissippi State Community College. New workforce programs at the Tennessee Colleges of Applied Technology include

  • Medical Assisting - TCAT-Nashville
  • Pharmacy Technician - TCAT-Pulaski
  • Road Building Equipment Service Technician – TCAT-Chattanooga
  • Diesel Powered Equipment Technician – TCAT-Harriman
  • Advanced Manufacturing – TCAT-Hartsville
  • Welding – TCAT-Harriman
  • Production Technician – (statewide)

A link to the full meeting materials are available on the TBR website at TBR.edu.

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.

Meeting/Event Information
December 2014 Quarterly Board Meeting