As the campus continues to add new programs and new students, ETSU at Sevierville Director Brandi Huskey is looking to continue building on their family-first culture, despite a growing campus.
“Our student population is different [from other ETSU campuses],” said Huskey. “The majority of our students work full-time and/or support a family, so we have to gear everything we do around family because if they’re family can’t come, they won’t come to campus.”
Currently, there are 197 students enrolled on campus, with even more students enrolled in online classes. By the fall semester, however, that number is expected to nearly double – from 197 to over 360 students.
Much of that growth can be attributed to the Accelerated Nursing program, which launches a new cohort every semester – spring, summer and fall — and could add up to 48 new students by the fall semester.
However, it’s not the only program expecting growth, as the K-5 Education program is expected to double from 11 students to up to 22, in addition to growth in other programs.
Huskey noted that the Sevierville campus’ simulation nursing lab – which came from an $818,000 Tennessee Higher Education Commission grant – and a student collaboration space, are two things that set Sevierville apart from other schools in that area, helping it stay competitive with larger schools.
“That simulation lab alone is something that isn’t available in Sevier county – at any level,” Huskey said. “We’re the only ones in Sevier County, Cocke County and Jefferson County that has that opportunity.”
Huskey, who is a Sevier County native, also said being a local has helped personalize the Sevierville Center and made people more comfortable when seeking information.
“My last name is recognizable as a local, so when a parent is looking for information, whereas they’re afraid to call campus, they’ll come by our office, or they’ll call and feel like they’re getting more of a personal touch with somebody who is from there,” Huskey said. “We’ve really built this cohesive team approach in Sevier County.”
And while ETSU at Sevierville is over an hour and a half away from the main campus in Johnson City, Huskey doesn’t see this as a negative, though there are certainly drawbacks.
“Its an advantage because it’s allowed ETSU to spread their offerings a little further from main campus, but it’s been a little bit of a disadvantage just because we’re so far removed from facility meetings, student affairs meetings — things we’d like to be a part of, but it just doesn’t work for us,” said Huskey.
ETSU at Sevierville currently offers undergraduate degrees in Business Management, Marketing Management, Early Care and Education, K-5 Education, Special Education, Psychology, Human Resources, Social Work, RN-BSN Nursing, Radiologic Technology, an Accelerated BSN, LPN-BSN and a Bachelor of Applied Sciences. It does not offer freshmen or sophomore level classes. Anyone interested in enrolling in any of those programs should call 865-429-7733 or email Sevierville@etsu.edu.