Editorial: Why some students quit college – and how they can finish

Growing up in Cookeville, Tenn., Hayley Furcean was determined to be the first college graduate in her family. “I’ve always been the smart kid,” she says. After graduating from high school in 2008, she earned a full academic scholarship for her first year at Tennessee Technological University in Cookeville and began studying early childhood education. […]

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Tennessee Promise students showing higher success rates than national average

The first cohort of Tennessee Promise students has had a success rate of 56.2 percent, compared to the national average of just 17 percent, Flora Tydings, chancellor of the Tennessee Board of Regents, told the Rotary Club of Chattanooga Thursday. Tennessee Promise provides “last dollars” scholarships to high school graduates wanting to attend two-year state […]

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Tennessee Promise students more likely to succeed in college, less likely to drop out, new data shows

Students using Tennessee’s free community college scholarship are significantly more likely to succeed in college than their peers outside the program, according to data released Thursday. Fifty-six percent of Tennessee Promise students who entered college in 2015, the program’s first year, had graduated, transferred to a four-year university or remained in school two years later. Only […]

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Tennessee is investing in a program that helps adults finish their college degree. Will it boost the economy?

A decade ago, when Lara Mechling was a college freshman at the University of Tennessee in Knoxville, she decided she’d rather party than study. She dropped out midway through the spring semester, a decision that haunted her for years. In August, the 29-year-old mother got a second chance. She walked onto the campus of Pellissippi […]

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Editorial: Making college affordable in Tennessee

As the cost of college continues to increase, all of us in higher education have an obligation to work toward making it more affordable. Fortunately, in recent years, higher education leaders in Tennessee have been at the forefront of policy and innovation designed to make college more accessible and affordable. Nevertheless, student debt continues to […]

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Tennessee Reconnect helps adults hop back on degree track

At age 46, Allen Hunter decided to enroll at Chattanooga State Community College, determined to earn a degree. “The first thing I’ve got to do is set expectations for my children,” he said last week. “I went back to school to set an example for them.” Returning to school full time was a culture shock, […]

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TN Reconnect helps adults continue their education

With the official signing of the Tennessee Reconnect Act last month, every Tennessean will now have the opportunity to enter or reenter public higher education tuition-free. Tennessee Reconnect, which was proposed by Gov. Bill Haslam in his State of the State early this year, was passed by the General Assembly in May. The program is […]

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Haslam Editorial: Tennessee lands a first among states in reconnecting adults to education

In Tennessee we’ve created innovative workforce partnerships and game-changing education reform for skills in high demand. The result is a steady pipeline of qualified candidates for companies doing business in our state. Tennessee is leading the way nationwide in K–12 education reform. We have continued that momentum and expanded our focus to include postsecondary education through a critical mission […]

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The First State To Offer Free Community College To Nearly Every Adult

The opportunity to go to college for free is more available than ever before. States and cities, in the last year especially, have funded programs for students to go to two-year, and in some cases, four-year, schools. Tennessee has taken the idea one step further. Community college is already free for graduating high school students. […]

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