Stories @ TCAT


Salvatore Evangelista, Tennessee College of Applied Technology (TCAT) Dickson Mechatronics Instructor at the Clarksville Campus, was recently selected to receive the 2021 Chancellor’s Commendation for Military Veterans.   

Evangelista served from 2011-2015 as an Infantryman in the United States Army.  He was deployed to Afghanistan in 2013 and served with 1-506th Infantry, 4th BCT, 101st ABN DIV.  Medically separated in 2015 due to injuries sustained during his deployment, Evangelista left the Army as an E5 SGT.  

Tennessee Board of Regents Chancellor Flora W. Tydings established the Chancellor’s Commendation for Military Veterans last year to honor the service, bravery and sacrifices of veterans in campus communities. The awards are presented during Veterans Day ceremonies, observances or recognitions that the TBR colleges traditionally conduct. 

The Chancellor’s Commendation is conferred in the form of a specially designed Challenge Coin. Challenge coins are a tradition in all branches of the military, signifying special achievement, excellence, hard work, unit pride, respect and esprit de corps. 


“You will never know what you can achieve unless you try to achieve it,” Evangelista said. 

“We are happy to honor Sal for his sacrificial service to his country,” said TCAT Dickson President Arrita Summers.  “His work ethic, code of conduct, and knowledge are an asset to his students and to our college.”  

Recipients of the Chancellor’s Commendation were nominated by their college presidents. This year’s recipients include 14 Soldiers, 9 Sailors, 7 Airmen, 6 Marines and 1 Coast Guardsman. “These 37 men and women represent the spirit and values of our colleges – student success, academic excellence, courage in adversity, and service to campus and community – and the highest ideals of military service,” Tydings said. 

“All military personnel take an oath in which they solemnly swear or affirm to support and defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies. That defense of our great nation requires tremendous sacrifice. Our college communities are strengthened by the presence, experience and perspective of veterans and active-duty military personnel – as students, faculty, staff and alumni. They are an important part of the great diversity of people and backgrounds on our campuses. We’re glad they’re here, and we’re privileged to honor their service – not only on Veterans Day but all year long,” Tydings said. 

Veterans can receive ongoing services and support at TBR colleges to help them make the transition, achieve academic success and earn their degrees.  

“The Tennessee Board of Regents is fully committed to the academic success of our veterans. The faculty, professional staff and senior leaders on all campuses and at the system office are dedicated to serving all veterans and military personnel, who bring a wealth of training and experience to our institutions,” said Dr. Robert M. Denn, associate vice chancellor for academic affairs and veterans service officer at TBR. 



TCAT Dickson serves as the state provider of workforce development and hands-on technical training in Dickson and the surrounding counties.  For more information, please visit