Late Surge In Tennessee’s Early Voting, But Totals Are Still Down

Late Surge In Tennessee’s Early Voting, But Totals Are Still Down
Voters wait in line to cast a ballot early in La Vergne. While there was a surge on the final day of early voting, totals are still well behind 2010 and even further behind 2006. Credit: Blake Farmer / WPLN

More than 13,000 people voted in Davidson County on the final day of early voting — even though only a few hundred a day were showing up during the first few days.

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Tennessee Promise’s Biggest Accomplishment: Adding ‘Free’ To College Conversation

Tennessee Promise’s Biggest Accomplishment: Adding ‘Free’ To College Conversation
A Volunteer State staff member helps Madison Cone, middle, complete the Tennessee Promise application, along with the community college's application for admission. Her mom came with her. Credit: Emily Siner / WPLN

The governor’s Tennessee Promise program guarantees that students can go to community college for free. And calling it free is more than a monetary statement: It’s also wildly effective marketing.

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Half Of Tennessee Promise Students Were Already Eligible For Federal College Funding

Half Of Tennessee Promise Students Were Already Eligible For Federal College Funding
Garnering federal financial aid, using a form known as the FAFSA, can be a confusing process for students, state officials say. Tennessee Promise requires that students fill out the FAFSA before getting the state's last-dollar scholarship. Credit: Bent Tree via Flickr

Many students attending community college under Tennessee Promise next fall will get their tuition paid by the federal government — meaning they could go to school tuition-free even without the state program.

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Supply Rocket Explosion Doesn’t Temper Thrill Of Space For Tennessee Astronaut

Supply Rocket Explosion Doesn’t Temper Thrill Of Space For Tennessee Astronaut
Astronaut Butch Wilmore prepares his suit in advance of his October 15 spacewalk. Image Courtesy NASA

Mt. Juliet native Butch Wilmore watched this week’s rocket explosion from 200 miles above the surface of the planet. The accident destroyed both food and scientific equipments earmarked for the astronaut’s six-month mission. But just the fact that he’s on the International Space Station seems to be keeping Wilmore in good spirits.

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Supporters of The Amp Turn Their Attention To Mayoral Candidates

Supporters of The Amp Turn Their Attention To Mayoral Candidates
Ralph Schulz, who leads the Nashville Area Chamber of Commerce, says it would be a mistake for the next mayor not to carry on Mayor Dean's 7-mile bus rapid transit project. Credit: Bobby Allyn/WPLN

Ralph Schulz, who heads the Nashville Area Chamber of Commerce, says maybe the Amp needs to continue with a different name, since it’s had some branding problems, to put it lightly.

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Speakers Who Say They Used To Be Gay Address Southern Baptist Leaders

Speakers Who Say They Used To Be Gay Address Southern Baptist Leaders
Christopher Yuan is now an instructor at Moody Bible Institute. He came out as gay when he was young, sold drugs through college and grad school and ended up in a federal prison on drug charges. He then converted and applied to go to seminary while he was still in prison. Credit: ERLC via Facebook

At the Southern Baptist conference on homosexuality, pastors and church leaders heard the testimonies of four people who claim to be formerly gay.

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Mayor Dean Leaves The Amp To His Successor

Mayor Dean Leaves The Amp To His Successor
The Amp is expected to run in dedicated bus lanes, though Mayor Karl Dean recently scaled back that proposal. Image via the Transit Alliance of Middle Tennessee

Mayor Karl Dean announced today that he would not seek local or state financial support for his administration's controversial seven-mile bus rapid transit project.

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Fort Campbell Soldiers In Liberia Knew 21-Day Isolation Was Likely

Fort Campbell Soldiers In Liberia Knew 21-Day Isolation Was Likely
Soldiers at Fort Campbell listen to briefings Thursday before leaving for Liberia later this month. Soldiers have been told they won't be in contact with the local population, but they are learning how to wear protective gear just in case. Credit: Blake Farmer / WPLN

The Pentagon says a dozen soldiers – including a two-star general – are being held on a base in Italy before being allowed to come home. The Department of Defense says this will be the policy for the time being, though it’s not required by Pentagon guidelines.

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Tennessee Thinks Most Students Signing Up For Free Community College Won’t Actually Attend

Tennessee Thinks Most Students Signing Up For Free Community College Won’t Actually Attend
Rebecca Hargrove, CEO of the Tennessee Education Lottery Corporation, signs up to be a Tennessee Promise mentor. Credit: Emily Siner / WPLN

Almost three quarters of high school seniors in the state have applied for Tennessee Promise, the last-dollar scholarship that covers community college tuition, which has doubled the state's expectations.

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Baptists Ask If Gay Marriage May Be An Issue ‘Where We Just Agree To Disagree’

Baptists Ask If Gay Marriage May Be An Issue ‘Where We Just Agree To Disagree’
Southern Baptists ministers gathered in Nashville at the end of April to discuss sexuality. The October conference includes pastors as well as lay people. Credit: ERLC via Flickr

Southern Baptists are publicly wrestling with homosexuality this week. The Nashville-based denomination invited pastors and lay people to Opryland for a follow-up event to a similar, smaller summit on sexuality held earlier this year.

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State-Trained Mentors Try To Make The Road To Free Community College Less Confusing

State-Trained Mentors Try To Make The Road To Free Community College Less Confusing
Ritchie Francisco, a freshman at Volunteer State, signs a poster that says he's committed to finishing college. Credit: Emily Siner / WPLN

More than 40,000 high school seniors have signed up for Tennessee Promise, the new state scholarship that sends students to community college for free. But they still have a lot to do before their first day of class, and sometimes even the smallest hiccup can derail would-be college students.

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