Tusculum University reaches agreement with Elizabethton on Bartleby students

John Thompson • Nov 29, 2018 at 11:10 PM

ELIZABETHTON — Elizabethton High School students who receive the Bartleby seal on their diplomas can expect guaranteed enrollment at Tusculum University in Greeneville, as well as the waiver of application fees to the institution and the waiver of essay requirements for students who submit a completed Bartleby portfolio.

Those special considerations for Bartleby students are a part of an agreement between Tusculum and the Elizbethton City School System signed Thursday afternoon at the high school.

Tusculum President James Hurley and Paul Pinckley, the university’s vice president of enrollment management, traveled to Elizabethton to participate in the signing ceremony. Elizabethton Director of Schools Corey Garndenhour, Elizabethton High School Principal Josh Boatman, and Bartleby Director Terry Smith represented the city school system in the signing.

The representatives said the university has had a close relationship with the Bartleby program from its formative period more than two years ago, when it was recognized for a special $200,000 grant by the XQ Super School Initiative to reimagine the 21st century school. This year, Bartleby was accepted as a full participant of the XQ Super Schools and was awarded $2.3 million.

Tusculum and Elizabethton has already formed a close relationship. Smith said several students from previous years have already enrolled in Tusculum and the relationship has grown closer.

Pinckley said the agreement comes at a very special time for Tusculum. He said Tusculum is the oldest institution of high learning in the state, having been founded in 1794. It will be celebrating its 225th birthday during this academic year. While it is celebrating its longevity, the school is also celebrating its status as the newest university in the state.

Hurley said the university has developed other important links with local students seeking to further their their education. The agreement not only guarantees admission to the university for Bartleby graduates, but even provides additional financial resources for the students.

In addition to any Tusculum scholarships for which the Bartleby students may already have earned, the students who submit a Bartleby portfolio will be eligible for an additional Tusculum scholarship. This additional scholarship provides $1,000 for students who live on campus and $500 for commuters. This additional scholarship is repeated each year, as long as the student maintains a 3.0 grade point average and other requirements.

Smith said this was good news.

“As these students consider their options for continuing their education, it’s excellent knowing they will have a clear path to admission at Tusculum as long as they are following the guidelines,” Smith said. “This is reassuring to students who are seeking to remain in the area for the next phase of their academic career and want to attend an exceptional university.”

The agreement goes beyond the students. Another part of the agreement commits the university to provide Tusculum speakers through a collaboration with the Bartleby director and Elizabethton High School instructors. Elizabethton High School teachers will also be able to attend Tusculum’s professional development events, and the university might invite EHS faculty members to make presentations about the school’s teaching methods.