Student Handbook

Student Services, Policies, & Procedures

Student Records

Student Files

A permanent file is maintained on each current and former student who has enrolled in Tennessee College of Applied Technology. Each permanent student education record will contain a minimum of the following information: 1) academic records; 2) student disciplinary files; 3) matters related to student discipline, pursuant to TBR policy, SW-U02. Other records pertaining to students are maintained and/or destroyed as provided in TBR policy  

The Tennessee College of Applied Technology complies with FERPA (20 U.S.C. §1232g) and the Tennessee Open Records Act (T.C.A. §10-7-501 et seq.) and maintains student education records as confidential documents except as provided by those statutes and their enabling regulations. The TCAT also complies with the Gramm-Leach-Bliley Act: Security Information Program guidelines as well as T.C.A. §47-18-2101 et seq. governing the protection of all nonpublic financial information as well as required notifications to consumers in the event of unauthorized access to confidential information.

Students may request access to review and/or obtain copies of their student education records by contacting the Student Services Office at their institution.

Attendance Policy

A. The nature of the programs at the Tennessee Colleges of Applied Technology is such that it is necessary for every student to attend regularly. Excessive interruptions due to absences will have an adverse effect on student progress.

1. A full-time student enrolled for a full term (432 hours) and that has been absent for more than 5.5% (24 hours) of the scheduled hours enrolled, will receive written communication alerting the student to the number of hours remaining prior to suspension. Available community and institutional resources will be shared to assist students with attendance issues. The number of hours of absence triggering notification must be prorated for all part-time students and full-time students enrolled for less than a full term.

2. When a full-time student enrolls for a full term (432 hours) and has absences exceeding 9.7% (42 hours) of the scheduled hours enrolled, that student will be suspended. A student suspended for attendance may appeal the suspension in writing to the president (or their designee) within three (3) days of receiving notification of the suspension. A student appealing suspension of attendance may remain in class until the suspension has been reviewed. The number of hours triggering suspension must be prorated for all part-time and full-time students enrolled for less than a full term.

3. A student is considered tardy if not in the classroom at the designated time for class to start. Students arriving late to school will be charged for absences due to tardiness as follows: 

  1. 1 to 15 minutes will be counted as .25 of an hour
  2. 16-30 minutes will be counted as .50 of an hour
  3. 31-45 will be counted as .75 of an hour
  4. 46-60 will be counted as one hour
  5. Multiple tardies will result in the following discipline:

a. Five (5) tardies: Student will be given a written warning by instructor.

b. Six (6) tardies: Student will be placed on probation by the president or the president's designee.

c. Seven (7) tardies: Student will be referred to the president (or their designee) and may be suspended.

4. An attendance record for each student shall be maintained in the student information system.

B. When a student misses three (3) consecutive days without contacting the college, that student may be presumed to have withdrawn from the college.




Changes in Enrollment Status

After the census date, students receiving a WNTSG/TN PROMISE/TCAT RECONNECT award will normally not be allowed to change status during the term.  The census date is defined as the first day of the term or the first day of the student’s enrollment for the term. 

  • A student may be allowed to change status from full-time to part-time during the term only when there are documented medical or personal reasons. Such medical or personal reasons shall include, but not be limited to, illness of the student, illness or death of an immediate family member, extreme financial hardship of the student or student’s immediate family, or other extraordinary circumstances beyond the student’s control where continued full-time attendance by the student creates a substantial hardship.
  • Students may change status between terms prior to the census date.  However, approval for the change in status must be granted prior to registration.
  • Students must contact the Student Services Office to request a change in status.

If approved for a change in enrollment status, the amount of any financial award, including WNTSG/TNPROMISE/TCAT RECONNECT being received will be adjusted based on the revised scheduled hours for the term.  Any amount that the student owes for financial resources already received must be paid prior to the effective date of the change. 

If the Student Services Office denies a student’s request to change enrollment status, the student will need to determine if they will continue enrollment or withdraw from the institution. In the event of withdrawal and subsequent non-continuous enrollment, a student may appeal the loss of scholarship so long as they meet one of the requirements for appealing loss of state aid and submit appropriate supporting documentation.

Different rules may apply to service members.  See TBR Policy, Admission, Enrollment, and Readmission of Service Members.

Release of Personally Identifiable Information

The Tennessee College of Applied Technology will obtain the student's written, signed consent before disclosing personally identifiable information about the student from their education records, unless release is pursuant to one of the exceptions provided by FERPA or its regulations. Students must execute a FERPA release form which gives the college permission to release information or to speak with others about matters contained in the student records as designated by the student. Students also have the option to execute consent forms authorizing the Tennessee College of Applied Technology to release student records to parents or other designated persons/entities. For information on the FERPA release form, visit the Student Services Office.


FERPA permits disclosure without consent to Tennessee College of Applied Technology officials with legitimate educational interests. A College official has a legitimate educational interest if the official is a person employed by the Tennessee College of Applied Technology or TBR in an administrative, supervisory, faculty, or staff position; a person or company with whom the school has contracted services; a member of the school's governing board; or, a student serving in an official capacity, such as student review hearings. Upon request, the school also discloses education records without student consent to officials of another school in which a student seeks or intends to enroll, but will notify the student, if possible, of the request.

A school may also disclose personally identifiable information without student consent to the following parties:

  • U.S. Comptroller General, U.S. Attorney General, U.S. Department of Education
  • Authorized organizations conducting educational research
  • Accrediting agencies
  • Alleged victim of a crime
  • Parent of a Dependent Student as defined by the IRS
  • Parent of a student under 21 regarding the violation of a law regarding alcohol or drug abuse

FERPA also permits the disclosure of "Directory Information" without prior consent of a student. "Directory information" means information contained in an education record of a student which would NOT generally be considered harmful, or an invasion of privacy if disclosed. Directory information includes:

  • Name
  • Address
  • Date of birth
  • Telephone listing
  • Course of study
  • Dates of attendance
  • Awards earned
  • Most recent previous institution attended

Other information of the type above specifically approved by the institution or school as acceptable directory information.

The Tennessee Colleges of Applied Technology does not sell and generally does not distribute mailing lists of students to any person or entity except as mandated by certain federal laws for military recruiters. The Solomon Amendment requires the release of name, address, and date of birth to military recruiters upon their request.

Visitors on Campus

While visitors and guests are welcome on campus, the welfare and safety of the entire student body and the maintenance of its academic programs MUST be placed above all else. All visitors and guests should report directly to the main office to sign in and receive a visitor's badge, which is always to be worn while on campus. Tennessee College of Applied Technology faculty and staff are aware that many of its students are both students and parents and that there are often complicating factors that impact these two roles. However, the Tennessee College of Applied Technology does not permit children who are minors, except those who are enrolled as students or participating in educational programs or activities sponsored by the College, to be on the campus without notice to, and permission from, the Tennessee College of Applied Technology Administration. A child is anyone who is birth to 17 years of age. Any visitor who brings or invites children to campus MUST maintain custody of the children while on campus and is responsible for the behavior and safety of the children while at the Tennessee College of Applied Technology. All visitors will be provided safety glasses when visiting a shop area.

When a violation of this policy is observed, the Student Services Office should be contacted. It is the responsibility of this office to assess the situation and, with the assistance of security, take appropriate action, which may include escorting the student, employee or guest, and children off-campus.

Food Services

A breakroom area with vending machines is provided on the main campus for use by students for scheduled breaks and lunches.

General Student Expectations

Utilization of Physical Facilities

Shops, laboratories, and equipment shall be used only for carrying out the instructional program of the school.

Students are responsible for the proper use and care of tools and equipment.

Organizations seeking to utilize designated Tennessee College of Applied Technology facilities must complete the Facilities Usage Application. This application must be submitted to the President or designee at least five (5) business days prior to the event. The President or designee will review the request and approve or deny it in writing, which may take the form of an email message. Denial of a Facilities Usage Request will include a statement of the basis for the denial. Please see the TBR policy1:03:02:50 on Facilities use.

Student Conduct

Student Services

Educational Counseling

The staff assists applicants in selecting an area of training based upon his/her abilities, interest, and goals.

Personal Counseling

The staff will provide individual counseling services to students who are experiencing personal, academic, attitude, or financial problems. The staff may recommend outside agencies specially trained to assist students in specific personal problems. All matters will be treated individually and on a confidential basis.

Career Counseling

Career guidance is the primary service offered to students by the Student Services Office to assist each applicant who desires or expresses an interest in pursuing a course of study in this College. Student Services personnel will assist the applicant in choosing a training program through an evaluation of the applicant's work experience, interests, test scores, and previous education.

Student Services personnel are responsible for guidance to those currently enrolled students who may decide to change their original career choice. In addition, the student may make personal problems or conflicts known to a member of the Student Services Office who will endeavor to help the student with alternatives to successfully solve or adjust to the problem. If appropriate or necessary, the student will be referred to an agency that has been established to meet specific needs of the individual. By providing career assessment, academic, and personal counseling, the Student Services Office functions for the benefit of helping applicants, students, and graduates to develop their employment potential and reach their intended career goals. Students need not have an appointment or schedule a specific time in advance, but in some cases, it is advisable. Instructors will cooperate with the students in allowing and encouraging the use of the Student Services Department.

Job Placement

Tennessee College of Applied Technology is dedicated to our graduates finding employment upon completion of training. The department maintains very close contact with industry and the state employment security office and can place a large percentage of students in employment upon completion of training. The placement of graduates is a primary concern of each instructor and College personnel. Also, the student must fully participate in the job-seeking process. Transcripts are available to the student or to agencies upon request. A transcript request form can be completed in the Student Services Department. Placement rates are continually evaluated and reported to our accrediting agency and the Tennessee Board of Regents. Placement rates are evaluated and utilized to monitor the effectiveness and continuation of all programs.


An effort is made to keep in touch with graduates after entering employment to determine their success and to make the training more relevant to the needs of new students and industries. All graduates are requested to keep the school informed as to their employment and any changes in employment. Surveys and student follow-up studies are made to determine if changes need to be made in meeting these needs. Employers, College personnel, and others are involved in follow-up efforts to assess and/or improve program curriculums and serving the needs of each student. It is very important for students, faculty, and staff to recognize the importance of all responses to follow-up surveys as a means of evaluating, improving, and funding the program offerings at the Tennessee College of Applied Technology. Graduates are normally considered for "entry-level" employment in their respective occupations. 

Limited English Proficiency

The Tennessee College of Applied Technology follows TBR policy in admission and delivery of services to those students with Limited English Proficiency (LEP). The Tennessee College of Applied Technology makes use of a language identification card to determine the language of LEP individuals who present themselves at a campus location seeking information. The institution is a subscriber to the state of Tennessee-contracted Linguistic International for outside interpreter service.

For a complete list of resources at that the Tennessee College of Applied Technology, please contact the Student Services Office.


Student Organizations

National Technical Honor Society

National Technical Honor Society (NTHS) is the acknowledged leader in the recognition of outstanding student achievement in career & technical education. Thousands of schools and Colleges are affiliated with the Society. Member schools agree that NTHS encourages higher scholastic achievement, cultivates a desire for personal excellence, and helps top students find success in today's highly competitive workplace.

Mission: To honor student achievement and leadership, promote educational excellence, and enhance career opportunities for the NTHS membership.

Vision: To be the leader in providing recognition for excellence in career and technical education and creating significant occupational opportunities for America's top workforce education students.


SkillsUSA is an applied method of competition and instruction for preparing America's high-performance workers in public career and technical programs. It provides quality education experiences for students in leadership, teamwork, citizenship, and character development. It builds and reinforces self-confidence, work attitudes and communications skills. It emphasizes total quality at work-high ethical standards, superior work skills, life-long education, and pride in the dignity of work. SkillsUSA also promotes understanding of the free-enterprise system and involvement in community service.

Mission: SkillsUSA's mission is to help its members become world-class workers, leaders, and responsible American citizens.