August 25, 2021 | Betty A. Proctor | Internal Press Release
As the Tennessee College of Applied Technology (TCAT) senior instructor of massage therapy at Chattanooga State Community College, Renee Johnson is a big fan of Career and Technical Education (CTE) and the opportunities it provides to her students. Ms. Johnson is a former graduate of the program she now heads and was recently named August advisor of the month by the National Technical Honor Society (NTHS).
Ms. Johnson believes in her students and wants them to enjoy their experience as they work toward obtaining certification. “I’m most proud of all their community outreach and leadership in their careers,” shared Renee. “Before COVID, we would often win the gold (medal) in the SkillsUSA Community Service contest.” Massage Therapy is often one of the first departments to volunteer their skills during community service events such as working with the homeless, underprivileged and low-income groups; while on campus, the students work at health fairs or at other special days and events sponsored by the college.
The NTHS is an educational nonprofit organization that serves as the honor society for CTE. During a year filled with disruptions due to the pandemic, Ms. Johnson made it a point to encourage instructors to encourage students. “If a student is just below the cutoff (to join NTHS), suggest to them how the student can receive honors,” stated Renee. In addition to promoting postsecondary education, NTHS awards annual scholarships, recognizes superior achievement, helps to build career portfolios with professional letters of recommendation, and provide access to global and technical networks. “Students that enter NTHS are our best students and it is a great way to honor them and their achievements,” shared Dr. Jim Barrott, executive vice president, TCAT.
“We are very pleased that Ms. Johnson was recognized by NTHS for her dedication to the Chattanooga Chapter; she is a marvelous student advocate,” added Dr. Barrott.
Ms. Johnson is licensed massage therapist (LMT) with specialties in hospital-based, pediatric, and equine massage. The Chattanooga State TCAT Massage Therapy program is a member of the National Certification Board for Therapeutic Massage and Bodywork, the American Massage Therapy Association, and Associated Bodywork and Massage Professionals. The two-semester class boasts a 100% job placement rate with average earnings of more than $47K.