Welcome to the Tennessee Governor's Academy

Student Profile: Ethan Sanders

TGA Class of 2009
Hometown: Crossville, TN
Home High School: Stone Memorial High School
College: University of Tennessee, Knoxville
Major: Mechanical Engineering

Reasons for coming to TGA: 

My old school does not have AP courses and very few dual courses. I felt that this would help get me ahead in my classes for college. I am really looking forward to having a job and then a family. I believed that this would help me reach this goal sooner.

Favorite thing about TGA:

I love going to Oak Ridge. I have the opportunity to work in the Nuclear Sciences and Technologies Division with a great group of men and Cathy.

Plans for college and beyond:

I will be attending the University of Tennessee, Knoxville and plan to double major. One in Engineering Management, and the other in either Nuclear, Mechanical, or Chemical Engineering. Once those majors are achieved, I plan to go on and receive a Ph.D. in one of the latter three listed. I hope to live somewhere in the north, maybe working in a research laboratory similar to Oak Ridge, or teach mathematics and other engineering courses at a university.

The transition from living at home to living at TGA:

My responsibilities of living did not change much with the transition. I was used to cleaning my room and cooking (a passion of mine), doing laundry, and cleaning up after myself in general. The hardest transition for me was going from having no homework to the 5 to 7 hours that we have here and having to make myself do the homework without having someone (like my mom) yell at me to do it (which was necessary).

Classes at TGA compared to previous educational experiences:

The courses available at TGA are much more advanced and rigorous than the courses offered at my home high school. I would not have had the opportunity to take physics or calculus, or even differential equations and matrix algebra, at my old school. The class environment here at TGA is much better I believe, too. Here you are taking classes with people who, without a doubt, have a passion for learning. This is not always so at just any public high school.

Advice for prospective students:

I would advise them to evaluate their friendships at their old school. If they are willing to leave practically everything behind them, then coping at TGA will be much easier.  It is the best experience that I have ever had, but was and is very challenging and can be depressing at times…………. But in the future you (I) will look back on this and be very glad that I stuck it out!


Ethan '09

Kim McMillan