The University of Tennessee offers Dolly Parton history course

By Sheri Elfman  |  April 18, 2017 at 7:10 AM
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April 18 (UPI) -- The University of Tennessee in Knoxville is offering an honors history course on legendary country singer/songwriter and actress Dolly Parton.

The course, called Dolly's America: From Sevierville to the World, follows the Tennessee native's life from "'hillbilly' girl from Appalachia" who "grew up to become an international one-word sensation," the course descriptions reads.

Students will read Dolly Parton's book Dolly: My Life, other books about Appalachia and watch TV shows that gave a look into Appalachia in pop culture.

The course description states, "At the end of the class, each student writes a 10-page work answering the question "'What was Dolly Parton's America?'"

Dr. Lynn Sacco, the course instructor, said the idea came to her when she saw Parton speak at the university's graduation years ago.

"They gave her an honorary degree. And tears streamed down and she said 'I was voted the least likely to succeed at my high school' took the bus the next day and headed to Nashville," Sacco said.

Parton continues to give back to her home state -- her Dollywood Foundation donated $1,000 a month for six months to families displaced by the Tennessee wildfire in November 2016.

"As you may know by now, there have been terrible wildfires in the Great Smoky Mountains, the same mountains where I grew up and where my people call home," she said in a statement.

"I have always believed that charity begins at home, and my home is someplace special. That's why I've asked my Dollywood companies ... to help me establish the 'My People Fund,'" she continued.

Topics: Dolly Parton
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