Media Room

Date: 2/01/2019

Pellissippi State expands with new buildings planned for Hardin Valley and Blount County campuses

Pellissippi State Community College has announced today its largest expansion in 44 years.


Pellissippi State, the largest community college in Tennessee with 10,894 students, announced plans to build a science and math building on its Hardin Valley Campus in Knoxville and a workforce development center on its Blount County Campus in Friendsville.


"Today is a historic day at Pellissippi State," said Pellissippi State President L. Anthony Wise Jr. "Never before have we had two capital projects occurring simultaneously. Never before have we set a $10 million fundraising goal. And never before have we engaged so many volunteers in the process."


The new 82,000-square-foot science and math building will help Pellissippi State meet demands for classrooms and lab spaces that have increased due to Tennessee Promise and Tennessee Reconnect, last-dollar scholarships offered to high school seniors and adults without college degrees, respectively.


"Pellissippi State's general biology lab is in use for 12 hours a day, five days a week, with most labs at full capacity," said Kane Barker, dean of Natural & Behavioral Sciences. "Many students need this course and other math and science classes in order to graduate on time. This new building will double the capacity for many of our core courses."


Meanwhile, Blount County has experienced $2.8 billion in new capital investment and announced 5,500 new jobs since 2011, according to the Blount Partnership. Pellissippi State's new 62,000-square-foot workforce development center will help fill the area's need for highly skilled, college-educated employees.


"This new building will allow us to expand our Engineering Technology, Computer Information Technology and Culinary Arts associate degree programs and certificates," said Teri Brahams, executive director for Economic and Workforce Development for Pellissippi State. "We would not be here today without DENSO Manufacturing Tennessee's commitment to expansion and employment in Blount County and their advocacy on behalf of manufacturing in our state."


Pellissippi State plans to break ground on the new science and math building this spring and open it in fall 2021. The college plans to break ground on the workforce development center in December 2019, and classes will start there in fall 2021.


The total project cost for the construction of the new science and math building is $27 million while the total project cost for the construction of the workforce development center is $16.5 million.


Pellissippi State is responsible for $2.7 million for the new science and math building, which is primarily funded by the state, and $5.5 million for the workforce development center, which also is being funded by the state and the Tennessee College of Applied Technology Knoxville, which will occupy part of the building.


Other funding priorities announced Friday include $800,000 to expand Pellissippi State's Media Technology program, specifically the Audio Production Engineering concentration, as well as $1 million to help support students through scholarships and emergency assistance and to help faculty through funding individual departments and programs, professional development opportunities and new equipment and technology updates.


Part of Friday's announcement was that the Pellissippi State Foundation already has raised $8 million of its $10 million goal, thanks to significant contributions from donors such as the Haslam Family Foundation; Ruth and Steve West; Blount County, the City of Maryville and the City of Alcoa in partnership with the Industrial Development Board; Pilot Flying J; Arconic Foundation; Clayton Family Foundation; Clayton Homes Inc.; UT-Battelle; DENSO North America Foundation; Oak Ridge Associated Universities; UCOR, an AECOM-led partnership with Jacobs; William Ed Harmon; and the Thompson Charitable Foundation.


For more information about the Pellissippi State's two new buildings and the campaign to build them, visit To view the video shown at today's event, visit


For more information on Pellissippi State, visit or call 865-694-6400.




Hardin Valley Campus Science and Math Building

  • 82,000 square feet
  • Designed by BarberMcMurry Architects
  • 18 classrooms
  • Six computer labs
  • Nine science labs to serve Anatomy and Physiology (two spaces, including room for cadavers), Botany/Zoology, Cellular Biology, Microbiology, Chemistry, Advanced Chemistry, Physical and Environmental Sciences, and Physics
  • Advisory offices on the second floor, taking the place of six portable buildings
  • Expected groundbreaking: Spring 2019
  • Expected opening: Fall 2021
  • Total project cost: $27 million
  • Pellissippi State's share: $2.7 million

Blount County Campus Workforce Development Center

  • 62,000 square feet
    • 36,000 square feet for Pellissippi State
    • 26,000 square feet for Tennessee College of Applied Technology Knoxville
  • Designed by BarberMcMurry Architects
  • Pellissippi State programming will include:
    • Smart Factory MegaLab featuring Industry 4.0 curriculum
    • Computer Information Technology program including concentrations in Networking, Cyber Defense, and Systems Administration and Management
    • Corporate Training Center for training the employees of the College's more than 30 workforce development training partners
    • Culinary Arts concentration
    • Electrical Engineering Technology program
    • Industrial Maintenance concentration
    • Mechanical Engineering Technology program
    • Manufacturing concentration
  • TCAT programming will include:
    • Machine Tool Technology
    • Pipe Fitting
    • Industrial Electrical Maintenance and Welding
    • LPN Practical Nursing, Patient Care Tech, Certified Nursing Assistant, EMT and Medical Surgery Lab
  • Greater opportunities for dual credit and dual enrollment for local high school students
  • Expected groundbreaking: December 2019
  • Expected opening: Fall 2021
  • Total project cost: $16.5 million
  • Pellissippi State's share: $5.5 million