2018-2019 State of the School Address
A Providence Academy student has been named a 2019-2020 Ned McWherter Scholar. The named recipient is Ben Jones, son of Randy and Dana Jones of Kingsport, TN. This is the third year in a row a Providence student has been selected to receive this scholarship.
The Ned McWherter Scholars Program is intended to encourage academically superior Tennessee high school graduates to attend college in Tennessee. Applicants must have a minimum of a 3.5 GPA and a 29 or above on the ACT. This year there were nearly 1,800 applicants, but only 180 selected in the state of Tennessee. The program awards each student $6,000 per academic year, with $3,000 from the state of Tennessee and $3,000 from the college or university the student attends
“Ben has been with us at Providence since Kindergarten, and we are so proud of the exceptional young man he has become.” PA Head of School, Ben Holland said. “Ben excels academically, athletically, and is one of the most respectful and well-rounded students you’ll meet. He represents our school well, and I have no doubt that his future will be bright.”
The Ned McWherter Scholars Program began in 1986 and is designed to encourage academically superior Tennessee high school graduates to attend college in the Volunteer State. Since 2002, there have been more than 1,000 Ned McWherter Scholars.
Earlier today, Head of School Ben Holland announced the hiring of former UT Vol and Johnson City local, Damon Johnson, to lead the basketball program at Providence Academy.
Ben Holland shared, “Providence Academy is a Christ-centered school that strives for excellence not only in academics but also in fine arts and athletics. We foster a community which allows our students to flourish in all three areas while glorifying God. A man known for his Godly character, athletic prowess, and years of coaching experience, Damon Johnson is a perfect fit for our school’s competitive program.” Damon shared, “I feel very honored and blessed be a part of the Knight family. I love how God is the head of everything at Providence, and I believe this job was laid out for me with where I’m at in my life. Basketball is a tool for me to speak about God and life, and I look forward to leading Providence Academy in a new direction and making Providence Academy a staple in this area.” Athletic Director, Martin Sells commented, “We’re excited to welcome Coach Johnson to the staff. He’ll make a great addition to the Providence family and will be instrumental as we transition conferences in the coming years.”
Since 2012, Damon Johnson has served as an assistant coach for the ETSU Lady Bucs. He also spent two years as a men’s basketball assistant coach for King College and helped guide the Tornados to back-to-back Conference Carolinas Regular Season Championships and King’s first-ever appearance in the Division II NCAA Tournament. Johnson spent two years as an assistant coach for two Johnson City area schools after spending 11 years playing professionally in Europe.
Prior to going pro, Johnson played one season at Hiwassee Junior College where he was named a First Team All-American. He then transferred to the University of Tennessee to play for the Volunteers from 1994-96. In his three years at UT, he was a two-year starter, voted Best Team Player in 1995, and Most Versatile Player after his senior season in 1996.
As a Johnson City native, he played for current King College head coach and athletic director, George Pitts, while attending Science Hill High School from 1989 to 1992. Johnson helped bring Science Hill a state title in 1990 and a state runner-up finish in 1991. His teams won the conference title all four years of his playing career as well as district and regional titles. He also has a place in the Science Hill High School Hall of Fame.
Earlier today, Head of School Ben Holland announced the hiring of former Major League Baseball catcher and World Series Champion, Jeff Reed, to lead the baseball program at Providence Academy.
Ben Holland shared, “This is Providence Academy’s 25th anniversary. The Providence foundation is built on a Christ-centered and classical approach to learning, and during the school’s first 25 years, Providence has built an academic reputation that few schools can match. We look forward to supporting our academic excellence with excellence in arts and athletics as well. With this vision in mind, I am excited to announce that we have hired a man with the Christ-like character and baseball experience to lead our program to be able to compete with the best - Jeff Reed.” Jeff shared, “I am excited to join the Providence Academy Knights. I look forward to helping shape young men with character and excellence on and off the field.”
Jeff Reed is a former professional baseball catcher who played in the major leagues for 17 years for the Minnesota Twins, Montreal Expos, Cincinnati Reds, San Francisco Giants, Colorado Rockies, and Chicago Cubs. He batted left-handed and threw right-handed. Jeff has been a coach of the Elizabethton Twins and will also continue in that role. In 1988, as a Cincinnati Red, Jeff caught a perfect game pitched by Tom Browning. Jeff was also part of the 1990 World Champion Cincinnati Reds.