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Tusculum University
Former names
Greeneville College (1794–1868)
Tusculum Academy (1818–1844)
Tusculum College (1844–1868)
Greeneville & Tusculum College (1868–1908)
Washington & Tusculum College (1908–1912)
Tusculum College (1912–2018)[1]
MottoSit Lux (Latin)
("Let there be light")
TypePrivate university
Established1794; 230 years ago (1794)
Religious affiliation
Presbyterian Church (USA)
Endowment$23.9 million (2023)
PresidentScott Hummel
Administrative staff

36°10′23″N 82°45′42″W / 36.1730°N 82.7616°W / 36.1730; -82.7616
CampusRural, 140 acres (0.57 km2)
Colors    Orange and black
Sporting affiliations
NCAA Division II
South Atlantic Conference
18 sports teams

Tusculum University is a private Presbyterian university with its main campus in Tusculum, Tennessee, United States. It is Tennessee's first university and the 28th-oldest operating college or university in the United States.[2]

In addition to its main campus, the institution maintains a regional center for Adult and Online Studies in Knoxville, and Morristown.

The entrance gate to Tusculum University, Tennessee


In 1806, emancipated slave John Gloucester became the first African-American student to study at Greeneville College. He was the first African-American educated by a college in Tennessee and later helped found the First African Presbyterian Church in 1807, in Philadelphia.[3][4][5]

Samuel Doak and Hezekiah Balch sought the same goals through their separate colleges. They wanted to educate settlers of the American frontier so that they would become better Presbyterians, and therefore, in their thinking, better citizens.[6]

Scott Niswonger Student Center on the campus of Tusculum University.

Origin of name

Samuel Doak left Washington College and founded Tusculum Academy, on the present campus of Tusculum University, in 1818 with his son, Samuel Witherspoon Doak.[7] S.W. Doak was named after Princeton University's then-president Dr. John Witherspoon, a signer of the United States Declaration of Independence and Tusculum Academy was named after Witherspoon's estate at the College of New Jersey (Princeton). The original Tusculum was a city near Rome, Italy, and home to Roman scholar and philosopher Cicero. It was he who, along with others, identified the civic virtues that form the basis of civic republican tradition, which emphasizes citizens working together to form good societies that in turn foster individuals of good character.[8]



Academic rankings
U.S. News & World Report[10]86 (tie) of 90
Master's university
Washington Monthly[11]341 of 604

Tusculum is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools to award associate, baccalaureate and Master degrees.

Annie Hogan Byrd Hall is a performance space used for both university theatre and music events as well as outside arts events.

It also maintains institutional memberships with the American Council on Education, the Council of Independent Colleges, the Association of American Colleges and Universities, the Council for Higher Education Accreditation, the Council for Opportunity in Education,[12] the Tennessee Independent Colleges and Universities Association,[13] the Tennessee State Board of Education, the Appalachian College Association,[14] the Association of Presbyterian Colleges and Universities, the American Association of University Women, the American Medical Association, and the New York State Board of Regents.


The tennis courts and athletic buildings on the campus of Tusculum University.

Tusculum athletic teams are nicknamed as the Pioneers. The university is a member of the Division II level of the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA), primarily competing in the South Atlantic Conference since the 1998–99 academic year.

Tusculum fields 24 recognized varsity sports teams: Men's sports include baseball, basketball, bowling, cross country, cheerleading, football, golf, lacrosse, soccer, tennis, track & field and volleyball; while women's sports include basketball, beach volleyball, bowling, cross country, cheerleading, golf, lacrosse, soccer, softball, tennis, track & field and volleyball.

Although most of those sponsored sports compete in NCAA D-II in the SAC, two teams compete as de facto NCAA Division I members. In women's bowling, a sport added in 2019–20 in which the NCAA holds a single championship open to members of all three NCAA divisions, the Pioneers are single-sport members of the Conference Carolinas.[15] Also added for 2019–20 was men's volleyball, in which the NCAA holds a combined Division I/II national championship; the Pioneers compete in that sport as an independent.[16] Tusculum also added the non-NCAA sport of men's bowling in 2019–20,[16] and also recognizes its cheerleaders (both male and female) as varsity athletes.

In 2004, Ricardo Colclough, a defensive back and kick returner, became the first Tusculum Pioneers football player to be drafted by the National Football League when he was selected in the second draft round by the Pittsburgh Steelers. Colclough, the first Tusculum player to appear in an NFL game, played for the Carolina Panthers. He was dismissed from the team in August 2008.[17]

In 2007, former Tusculum College basketball player, Tyler White, became a member of the Washington Generals, the exhibition team that travels with and plays against the Harlem Globetrotters.

In August 2009, Chris Poore, another former Tusculum College basketball player, also became a member of the Washington Generals.[18]

On September 4, 2014, the Tusculum football team hosted the College of Faith, an online institution in Charlotte, North Carolina. In a 71–0 win, the Pioneers set two NCAA all Division records: fewest total yards allowed (minus-100) and fewest rushing yards allowed (minus-124).[19] Tusculum also had three safeties, which tied a Division II record.

Notable alumni

This section does not cite any sources. Please help improve this section by adding citations to reliable sources. Unsourced material may be challenged and removed. (September 2017) (Learn how and when to remove this template message)

Notable faculty


  1. ^ The Tusculum College board of trustees placed President Dolphus Henry on paid administrative leave on May 22, 2007, following a vote of no confidence by the faculty. (See Tusculum College president on leave, Knoxville News Sentinel, 23 May 2007.) Two trustees with notable experience as university presidents (Drs. Edward J. Kormondy and Angelo Volpe) alternately shared leadership responsibilities until an interim president could take office. (See Trustees Volpe, Kormondy taking on transitional presidential leadership at Tusculum College Archived 2007-09-28 at the Wayback Machine, Tusculum College press release, May 29, 2007.) Dr. Henry announced his resignation in July 2007. (See Dolphus Henry resigns as president of Tusculum College Archived 2007-08-03 at the Wayback Machine, Tusculum College press release, 19 July 2007.)
  2. ^ Dr. Russell L. Nichols, president emeritus of Hanover College, assumed the duties of interim president on 1 August 2007. (See Dr. Russell L. Nichols coming as interim president of Tusculum College Archived 2007-08-03 at the Wayback Machine, Tusculum College press release, July 19, 2007.)
  3. ^ On February 28, 2009, the Tusculum College board of trustees elected Dr. Nancy B. Moody, president of Lincoln Memorial University, to be the institution's 27th president. She was scheduled to assume office on April 27, 2009. (See Tusculum College Names Dr. Nancy Moody President, Greeneville Sun, March 2, 2009.)


  1. ^ "TU's Timeline". tusculum.edu. Tusculum University. March 23, 2021. Retrieved December 13, 2022.
  2. ^ Rudolph, Frederick (1990). The American College and University: A history. Athens, GA: University of Georgia Press. (ISBN 0820312843)
  3. ^ "Gloucester, John (1776–1822) – The Black Past: Remembered and Reclaimed". blackpast.org. March 5, 2015. Retrieved December 10, 2018.
  4. ^ "John Gloucester – 1776–1822 – 1C-84 – Tusculum, TN – Tennessee Historical Markers on Waymarking.com". www.waymarking.com. Retrieved December 10, 2018.
  5. ^ "John Gloucester – Tusculum – TN – US". Historical Marker Project. Retrieved December 10, 2018.
  6. ^ Patrick, James (2007). The beginning of collegiate education west of the Appalachians, 1795-1833: The achievement of Dr. Charles Coffin of Greeneville College and East Tennessee College. Lewiston, New York: Edwin Mellen Press (ISBN 0773454470)
  7. ^ Randal Rust. "Doak, Samuel". Tennessee Encyclopedia. Retrieved September 9, 2021.
  8. ^ Sexton, Jr., Donal J., & Smith, Jr., Myron J. (1994). Glimpses of Tusculum: A pictorial history of Tusculum College. Marceline, MO: Walsworth Publishing.
  9. ^ "Dr. Greg Nelson returns to Tusculum board, helps ensure a seamless transition to Dr. Scott Hummel :: Tusculum University". TUSCULUM UNIVERSITY NEWS. February 20, 2020. Retrieved March 21, 2021.
  10. ^ "Best Colleges 2023: Regional Universities Rankings". U.S. News & World Report. Retrieved September 25, 2023.
  11. ^ "2020 Rankings -- Masters Universities". Washington Monthly. Retrieved August 31, 2020.
  12. ^ "Council for Opportunity in Education". Retrieved March 23, 2017.
  13. ^ "Home". Retrieved March 23, 2017.
  14. ^ "Appalachian College Association". Appalachian College Association. Retrieved December 10, 2018.
  15. ^ "Tusculum bowling joins Conference Carolinas as associate member" (Press release). Tusculum Pioneers. June 24, 2021. Retrieved January 25, 2022.
  16. ^ a b "Tusculum announces addition of three new sports beginning in 2019-2020" (Press release). Tusculum Pioneers. September 20, 2018. Retrieved January 20, 2019.
  17. ^ Colclough Cut From Panthers Following Drunk Driving Arrest, The Greeneville Sun, 1 September 2008.
  18. ^ http://www.greenevillesun.com/story/303919 Archived 2011-07-11 at the Wayback Machine.
  19. ^ "The worst game in college football history". September 5, 2014. Retrieved March 23, 2017.
  20. ^ "Stu Aberdeen, Coached Basketball at Marshall". The New York Times. June 13, 1979. ISSN 0362-4331. Retrieved February 21, 2023.
  21. ^ Tusculum College Alumni Catalogue, 1794-1918, pg. 18
  22. ^ Biographical Directory of the United States Congress.
  23. ^ "Dee Alford". AtlantaFalcons.com. Retrieved September 3, 2022
  24. ^ Tusculum College Alumni Catalogue, 1794-1918, pg. 28
  25. ^ Mike Siroky (1982). Orange Lightning: Inside University of Tennessee Football. Leisure Press. pp. 7–17
  26. ^ Phillip Langsdon, Tennessee: A Political History (Franklin, Tenn.: Hillsboro Press, 2000), pp. 162-163.
  27. ^ Sutton, Charles William (1888). "Dircks, Henry" . In Stephen, Leslie (ed.). Dictionary of National Biography. 15. London: Smith, Elder & Co.
  28. ^ "Dobson, Andrew Silas Newton, 1840-1918 | ArchivesSpace Public Interface". archives.etsu.edu. Retrieved February 21, 2023.
  29. ^ "House History".
  30. ^ "John Fulbeck Obituary: View Obituary for John Fulbeck by Custer Christiansen Mortuary-Covina, Covina, CA". Obits.dignitymemorial.com. Retrieved 2012-01-19
  31. ^ "DR. J.H. GIRDNER, LONG ILL, IS DEAD". Brooklyn Times-Union. 1933-10-28. pp. 10A.
  32. ^ Park Sung-min (2010-03-06). '아폴로박사' 조경철 박사 별세(종합) (in Korean). Seoul. Yonhap News Agency
  33. ^ Biographical Directory of the Tennessee General Assembly, 1975
  34. ^ University of Tennessee Allen A. Hall Letters MS-1635: Biographical Note
  35. ^ Hull, Thomas Gray – Federal Judicial Center". www.fjc.gov
  36. ^ United States Congress. "Spencer Jarnagin (id: J000059)". Biographical Directory of the United States Congress
  37. ^ "Tusculum alumnus' article appears in The Atlantic :: Tusculum University". TUSCULUM UNIVERSITY NEWS. 2009-09-10. Retrieved 2020-10-18
  38. ^ Lewis, Marianne W. (October 2000). "Exploring Paradox: Toward a More Comprehensive Guide". The Academy of Management Review. 25 (4): 760–776. doi:10.5465/amr.2000.3707712. JSTOR 259204.
  39. ^ Resolutions from the Knoxville Bar (Daily Press and Herald, Oct 27, 1875
  40. ^ "Milligan, Samuel – Federal Judicial Center". www.fjc.gov
  41. ^ "Vanguard University – 2009–2010 women's basketball roster". vanguardlions.com
  42. ^ United States Congress. "David T. Patterson (id: P000110)". Biographical Directory of the United States Congress.
  43. ^ "Silverbacks Make Multiple Roster Moves | North American Soccer League". Archived from the original on June 11, 2012.
  44. ^ a b Biographical Directory of the United States Congress
  45. ^ Appletons' Cyclopædia of American Biography/Reese, William Brown
  46. ^ "Eddie Smith".
  47. ^ Mary Boyce Temple, Introduction to Notable Men of Tennessee (Cosmopolitan Press, 1912), pp. 9-29.
  48. ^ Tusculum College Alumni Catalogue, 1794-1918
  49. ^ Pope, Marvin H. (Spring 1981). "Millar Burrows, 1889–1980, In Memoriam". The Biblical Archaeologist. 44 (2): 116–121. doi:10.1086/BIBLARCH3209867. JSTOR 3209867. S2CID 166422683.
  50. ^ Taylor, Michael, "Michael Taylor: A Geometry of Meaning", ISBN 978-1-55595-262-4, Hudson Hills Press, Manchester,VT 2006

Further reading