The Governor’s School for the Scientific Exploration of Tennessee Heritage has been operated by the Center for Excellence in Appalachian Studies and Services since 1987. Our School was the fifth Governor’s School to be chartered and today is one of only 11 in the state. Our school is distinctive among Tennessee Governor’s Schools as the only one dedicated to studying the history and heritage of the state, and by its focus on a broad range of field experiences in the beautiful southern Appalachians. We engage students in hands-on learning, with such activities as building pioneer shelters at the ETSU Valleybrook campus, hiking on Roan Mountain, digging for fossils at the world-renowned Gray Fossil Site, contra dancing in Jonesborough, cycling on the Tweetsie Traial, and conducting environmental surveys at Rocky Fork State Park.
Our Governor’s School is designed to help students explore the uniqueness of Tennessee through science, history, and culture, and to help prepare them for success in college. They experience four weeks on a college campus, take a college course, and complete seminars on research, writing, and communication skills. Over the years, more than 1400 students have participated in our Governor's School and many students and parents have testified to the life-changing effects of the program and the role it has played in preparing students for success in both college and career.