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Hope Sartain: Follow Your Heart

November 13, 2019

graduate Hope Sartain holding an awardI gained the skills needed to take the next step in my career at Motlow State Community College.

During a decade long career in marketing, I found a passion for volunteering in my community. Many hours were dedicated to local charity work, but I found my two true passions: the Highland Rim Kiwanis Club and the Tullahoma Area Chamber of Commerce (TACC).

Many years of volunteering for TACC through the Ambassador Program, Board of Directors, and the Executive Board continued to stir my passion.

I heard whispers that my predecessor would be retiring in two to three years. So, I decided it was time to take action on what my heart was telling me to do. I felt led to a calling to be the Executive Director of the Tullahoma Area Chamber of Commerce, but I needed to grow in a few areas to be a competitive candidate. I had reached a place in my career where I knew I could benefit from sharpening my skills in public speaking, leadership training, and business courses. In the Spring of 2014, I decided to enroll in the Adult College Express (ACE) program at Motlow. The ACE program is specifically designed for working adults, and it put me on track to graduate in 2016.

Not only did I acquire the skills that I had hoped to develop during my time at Motlow, but I was part of a cohort that became great friends of mine, and they still are to this day. We see each other in passing and on social media, and we continue to cheer each other on as we are all constantly growing and moving forward in life.

In the Fall of 2016, it was announced that resumes were being accepted for my current position, and I threw my name into the hat. I will never forget the day I got the phone call offering me the job. It was an overwhelming sense of accomplishment as I achieved a goal that, at one time, felt like a distant dream.

In the Spring of 2017, I received the inaugural "One to Watch" award from the Motlow Foundation during the annual Gala. I was honored to have been considered a candidate, but knowing that I was viewed as an outstanding graduate with great expectations ahead still leaves me speechless to this day. That award is still one of my proudest accomplishments.

Now starting my fifth year as TACC Executive Director, I still look back on my journey very fondly, and I am happy to report that the job is all I hoped for and so much more. Thank you, Motlow State.

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