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History

Motlow College first offered courses in Warren County through the Division of Continuing Education at the McMinnville State Area Vocational Technical School in 1976. Following the restructuring of the Motlow service area in 1984, which added Cannon, DeKalb, Van Buren, and White counties, a survey revealed an increased demand for additional course offerings in the McMinnville area.

In the spring of 1986 the Tennessee General Assembly appropriated $612,000 matched with $200,000 funding from the Warren County Commission to construct a 12,000 square foot classroom building. In April 1987, the State Board of Regents and the Building Commission approved supplemental funding of $134,000 for an additional 1,992 square feet for an additional classroom and student lounge. The supplemental funding was from funds remaining on the finished campus expansion project on the Moore County campus.

While awaiting the completion of the new building, a suitable temporary site was established at the McMinnville Civic Center with an administrative office and six classrooms. Ivan Jones was appointed as the director and classes began with Fall Quarter 1986. Classes continued at the temporary location until the Motlow McMinnville Teaching Site was completed August 21, 1988. For Fall Semester 1988, 428 students were enrolled at the teaching site, with an FTE of 225.

The Tennessee Higher Education Commission approved Center status for the McMinnville Site in January, 1990. With Center status, students could now complete an Associate of Arts or Associate of Science degree in General Studies or an Associate of Applied Science degree in Business at the Center.

In 1994 Warren County committed $150,000 to match $150,000 appropriated to expand the facility. To expand the instructional program further, an additional 2,992 square feet, including a 28-station computer lab, a 24-station biology lab, and a second ladies restroom was completed in the spring of 1996.

After Ivan Jones was appointed as Director of the Tennessee Technology Center in Shelbyville in July, 2000, Melody Edmonds was named Director of the McMinnville Center. In the fall of 2004, Motlow partnered with Tennessee Technological University to bring the 2+2 program in Elementary Education to the McMinnville Center. With this endeavor, students who wish to be K-6 elementary school teachers can earn their bachelors degree through Tennessee Tech at the McMinnville Center.

In the spring of 2005, the Tennessee Legislature approved $3.2 million for a 20,000 square feet expansion of the McMinnville Center. This expansion was completed in the Fall of 2008 which included a new administrative area, library, nursing lab, student lounge, and additional classrooms.

The McMinnville Center was the first campus to introduce Mechatronics in Spring 2010 thanks to generous donations from our local community.