Scholarships, Awards & Grants

HC*EXCELL's mission includes facilitation and distribution of scholarships, awards and grants. These would not be possible without the financial support of our HC*EXCELL benefactors.



Yamaoka Scholarship (Established 1990)

The formation of HC*EXCELL was initiated by a $50,000 gift from Dr. Kojiro Yamaoka, then chairman of the Tuff Torq Corporation at the plant dedication on April 20, 1990. The gift was meant to seed a foundation for promoting educational excellence and achievement in Hamblen County.  Interest from the seed money established two (2) annual scholarships for higher education (ideally) for Tuff Torq employees’ high school seniors; one for a Morristown-Hamblen East High School student and one for a Morristown-Hamblen West High School student. An additional $50,000 was added in 1996 to further support the scholarships, with the remainder of funds supporting HC*EXCELL’s program of work.



JTEKT Educational Leadership Award (Est. 2002)

The JTEKT Educational Leadership Award’s purpose is to honor a business, industry, individual, school or organization that has followed the JTEKT lead in promoting above and beyond educational excellence in Hamblen County.

The JTEKT Educational Leadership Award was originally created by HC*EXCELL in 2002 to recognize the support and significant contributions of JTEKT Automotive in encouraging quality education for all students in Hamblen County.

Nominations are made by community stakeholders. Independent judges select the recipient and the award is presented at the annual HC*EXCELL Education Banquet.


Don Rogers

Ja BizTown Volunteer of the Year Award

In 2015, HC*EXCELL created the Don Rogers JA BizTown Volunteer of the Year Award.  The award was created to model the exemplary volunteerism of Don Rogers, and is to be awarded yearly to an individual or company chosen for their outstanding support for the Junior Achievement JA BizTown program in Hamblen County.

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Teacher of the Year Awards

HC*EXCELL recognizes educational excellence by providing a Reward for Excellence check in the amount of $500 to each of the three Hamblen County District Teachers of the Year.

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National Board Professional Teaching Standards Certification (NBPTS) Grant

HC*EXCELL began promoting National Board of Professional Teaching Standards Certification in partnership with the Hamblen County Board of Education in 2002. The first Hamblen County national Board recipient was Beth Freeman. The cost for National Board certification is $2,300 and a great of self-evaluation and hard work. To promote and support high quality teaching HC*EXCELL honors our Hamblen County National Board teachers upon receipt of their certification with a check for $500 and a $200 stipend per year once certified.

National Board Certification is the highest credential in the teaching profession. A voluntary process established by National Board of Professional Teaching Standards, certification is achieved through a rigorous performance-based assessment that takes between one and three years to complete and measures what accomplished teachers should know and be able to do.

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