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Monday December 06, 2021

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Student Receives Chancellor's Commendation
November 15, 2021

A Walters State Community College student has been recognized with the Chancellor’s Commendation for Military Veterans.
Cody McFarland, an electromechanical engineering major from Talbott, was presented the award during Veteran’s Night at the Lady Senator and Senator basketball games Nov. 10.  McFarland served six years in the United State Army, including two deployments to Afghanistan. 
“Tonight, we acknowledge and thank all of the veterans in our community,” said Dr. Tony Miksa, president of Walters State. “We are especially proud of our student veterans. Cody is a great example. He manages a very difficult academic program with a full-time job and his family responsibilities.”
The award is actually a special challenge coin. A rich tradition in all branches of the military, challenge coins signify special achievement, excellence, hard work, unit pride and respect. 
McFarland served as a combat engineer and decided to pursue a college degree as a way to better himself and the opportunities he had. McFarland, a Morristown native, was familiar with the college and found classes to be convenient. He works evenings at Oshkosh Manufacturing and credits his wife Ashley with helping manage his time. The couple have two children, Hank and Renly.
“Don’t be afraid,” is McFarland’s advice to veterans who are considering college.
“I had been out of a classroom for seven years when I first took a college class. I was nervous. I would tell other veterans to go ahead, take the chance.”
For information on using veterans educational benefits at Walters State, contact Jason Wilder, veterans service coordinator, at 423-585-6896 or

In the photo: From left are Jason Wilder, Walters State veterans coordinator; Cody McFarland, U.S. Army veteran; and Dr. Tony Miksa, college president.