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Tays Named Director Of Roane State Fentress Campus

/ The Upper Cumberland's News Leader
Tays Named Director Of Roane State Fentress Campus

Cheryl Tays has been named the Director of the Roane State Fentress County campus, continuing a relationship with the school that began while she was a high schooler.

Tays said she is excited to see the campus take a big step toward meaningful growth as they break ground on a new facility in April. She said continuing that growth and getting high schoolers in the door through dual enrollment are two of her biggest goals in her new position.

“I love Fentress County,” Tays said. “I love the young people of Fentress County and I hope that I can help them find a path to education and a fulfilling career and just do a lot of good things for our community.”

Tays said she attended a computer science camp at the campus as a high school senior. She went on to play basketball at Roane State, got her degree, and returned as an adjunct professor. Tays said after 23 years in the high school classroom, she is thrilled beyond words to return to her alma mater.

“They’ve just always been in my mind and been important to me as an alumni,” Tays said. “But yes, it is just humbling and I just feel so honored to do this for my community.”

She said she wants to help the people of Fentress County who are not satisfied with their lives or their work but feel like post-secondary education is out of reach. She said there is a big piece of the county community that would benefit greatly from courses at Roane State, and there are opportunities in place to bring them that chance.

“There’s so many options,” Tays said. “I mean, grants, scholarships. There’s just so much going on that that population can take advantage of to become educated or get the training that they need to move into a job that might serve them and their families a little better or just be happier in what they’re doing.”

She said when the people of Fentress County use Roane State as a resource to pursue their passion and use their talent for good, the whole county reaps benefits through economic growth. She said a lot of the groundwork for what her new role will entail has already been put into place by her predecessor, Tinisha Key.

“She left some really big shoes to fill,” Tays said. “I feel like Roane State Fentress County will be reaping what she has sewn for a long time, so a lot of the good things that are happening were because of the effort that she put out and the passion that she had for Roane State and this town.”


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