Increasing Higher Education Opportunities for Tennessee High School Students by Providing Last-Dollar Scholarships with Mentor Guidance

The Client

With the mission of eliminating the barriers associated with entering the post-secondary pipeline, tnAchieves launched in 2008 as a universal last-dollar community and technical college scholarship that paired students with volunteer mentors and required the students to complete at least 8 hours of community service. tnAchieves transitioned to administer the programmatic pieces of the scholarship with the launch of TN Promise in 2014.

Designed to increase the percentage of Tennesseans with a post-secondary degree, TN Promise provides funding for technical or community college to every Tennessee high school student. As a partnering organization for TN Promise, tnAchieves serves 95 percent of Tennessee’s high school seniors with a staff of 21.

“It is the only model of its kind in the country,” says Krissy DeAlejandro, tnAchieves Executive Director.“ Our goal is to assist as many students to and through college as possible,” she adds.

The Opportunity

After partnering with TN Promise in 2014, tnAchieves began to grow. To accommodate increased HR tasks, senior staff decided to use a Professional Employer Organization and found LBMC Employment Partners. For the past five years, LBMC EP has handled open enrollment, onboarding for new hires, terminations, and payroll for tnAchieves. LBMC EP ensures that tnAchieves maintains compliance with state and federal laws related to payroll tax and human resources.

The Solution

For tnAchieves, the best part of working with LBMC EP is the level of customer service they receive from their HR manager, Arielle Sadler. According to Maegan Tribble, Senior Director of Finance and Administration, Arielle is always quick to respond to questions and provides detailed and thoughtful answers. “Our team is supported through Arielle’s diligent work, organization, and timely responses,” Tribble says.

The LBMC EP team streamlined tnAchieves systems for onboarding, open enrollment, and payroll through the Employee Navigator system. Tribble says the new system has made managing employees simpler and less time-consuming.

LBMC EP makes staff available to explain benefits details to employees with questions. LBMC EP’s knowledgeable staff also ensures that tnAchieves’ directors stay up to date on all new payroll laws and regulations.

“LBMC EP’s team does a great job explaining HR, payroll, and benefits information in ways that make it easy for organizations to understand,” says Tribble. “The LBMC EP staff is friendly and always happy to answer questions and meet our needs,” she affirms.