Brian Noland, the new president of East Tennessee State University, has named a panel to map out a vision for what the school should look like in 2036. As Press Assistant News Editor Rex Barber reported last week, the Committee for 125 will look at athletics, the diversity of academic programs and the prioritization of new facilities on campus.
As we noted during last year’s centennial celebration, it has been a very good first 100 years for ETSU. In addition to being the region’s premiere university, ETSU has a host of unique programs — ranging from medicine to storytelling — to be proud of. The former teacher’s college and normal school has definitely made a name for itself in the fields of health, education and the arts.
We believe this success can continue in the next 100 years, but history teaches us that we shouldn’t take anything for granted. There are plenty of challenges ahead, particularly in regard to dwindling state funding for higher education. ETSU students are likely to see continued fee and tuition hikes in the coming years.
These tuition and budgetary concerns loom large as the university looks to stake out new and promising ground in the coming quarter century. Repeating the success of the last 30 years — with innovative offerings like the college of medicine, the pharmacy school and the bluegrass program — will not be easy. The university must continue to develop public/private partnerships and offer programs that are ahead of the curve when it comes to filling the needs of a rapidly changing world.
We would like to hear what you think. What should ETSU do to prepare for its 125th anniversary?
You can “Sound off” on this topic by sending your comments to Mailbag, P.O. Box 1717 Johnson City, TN 37605-1717, or email@example.com.
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