Pellissippi State Community College was originally a State Technical Institute that was founded in 1974 in Knoxville. Way back then, the first class contained just 45 students, and there were only three associate degree programs available. Now, the institute has grown to include five campuses and over ten thousand students.

Current students can choose from seven different academic departments including Business and Computer Technology, English, Engineering and Media Technologies, Liberal Arts, Mathematics, Natural and Behavioral Sciences, and Nursing. There are a multitude of courses offered across the various campus locations and online. Students of all ages can attend.

Expansions into Blount County


In 2019, Pellissippi State Community College announced a huge expansion, the largest in the college’s history. This expansion includes a new science and math building on the Hardin Valley Campus in Knoxville, and it includes a workforce development center on the Friendsville campus in Blount County.  

The president of the college, L. Anthony Wise Jr., is excited about this huge expansion calling it a “historic day at Pellissippi State.” He goes on to state that there has never been a project of this magnitude attempted before in the college’s history. The school has set a $10 million fundraising goal and thousands of volunteers have set out to help with the project.


Since 2011, Blount County has seen an explosive growth with over $2.8 billion in capital investment and nearly 6,000 new jobs being announced. The new workforce development center, all 62,000 square feet of it, will help fill the county’s need for highly skilled employees.


The executive director for Economic and Workforce Development at the college, Teri Brahams, discusses the Blount County expansion saying, “This new building will allow us to expand our Engineering Technology, Computer Information Technology and Culinary Arts associate degree programs and certificates.”


The goal is to start construction on the new Blount County building in December of 2019, and the college hopes to have it up and running with classes starting in the fall semester of 2021. The estimated costs for the building are$16.5 million.


Substantial strides have already been made in the fundraising department with $8 million having already been raised. There have been very significant donations made by the following:


  • Haslam Family Foundation
  • Ruth and Steve West
  • Blount County
  • City of Maryville
  • City of Alcoa
  • Pilot Flying J
  • Arconic Foundation
  • Clayton Family Foundation
  • Clayton Homes Inc.
  • UT-Battelle
  • DENSO North American Foundation
  • Oak Ridge Associated Universities
  • UCOR
  • William Ed Harmon
  • Thompson Charitable Foundation


How Can You Help?


If your business is interested in helping fund the efforts to bring this expansion into Blount County to life, you can give to the Campaign for the Pellissippi State Community College using this link.


We are excited to see the new workforce development center come to Blount County. This is an exciting development for businesses in the county and all across East Tennessee. The Blount County Chamber of Commerce will keep you up to date on all the developments on the expansion.