Late father of TSU President Glenda Glover honored with street naming

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (TSU News Service) – The late father of Tennessee State University President Glenda Glover was honored for his leadership and community service as a civil rights activist.

(l-r) Rev. Lester Baskin, Mrs. Irene Baskin, President Glenda Glover, Councilman Edmund Ford, Jr. Rev. Henry Baskin Jr. pose in front of new street sign named in honor of the late Henry Baskin, Sr., President Glover’s father. (Submitted photo)

An unveiling ceremony in Memphis, Tennessee, took place on Saturday, June 17, to name a portion of Weaver Road after Henry Earl Baskin, Sr. The Memphis City Council earlier this year approved the street naming resolution that was sponsored by Councilman Edmund Ford, Jr. and Councilwoman Patrice J. Robinson.

“My family and I are extremely grateful and humbled by this recognition for our late father,” President Glover said. “He believed in equality for all human beings and was not afraid to stand up for his belief that we were all created equally and deserved to be treated as such. Our success as a family is largely because of our father. He was committed to our family.”

President Glover added that she and her siblings remember the family patriarch working tirelessly for the City of Memphis, putting all six of his children through college. Four of his children attended Tennessee State University. As an inspirational leader, he made it a priority to assist other students in obtaining financial aid so that they could attend college.

Baskin Family at street dedication ceremony in honor of family patriarch Henry Baskin, Sr. (Submitted photo)

Mr. Baskin, a World War II veteran who obtained the rank of master sergeant, devoted himself to a career of community service that began in 1955 when he organized the Weaver Clowns Baseball Club because of racial discrimination. He was denied the opportunity to compete against another all white team. Undaunted, Mr. Baskin became president of the Levi-West Junction Civic Club, and led many marches against discriminatory practices, and for better city services for blacks in the Weaver Road-West Junction area.

Mr. Baskin was also an active member of the NAACP, participating in sit-in demonstrations with prominent civil rights leaders and spearheading the march on downtown Memphis that led to sewage lines and indoor facilities for African-Americans in the Weaver Road-Boxtown area. He also led the march that resulted in better fire and police protection, as well as better roads and streets in the South Memphis area.

For five decades, Mr. Baskin also had a voice in Memphis politics. He was a campaign manager, a precinct director, and worked the polls every election to ensure adherence to voters’ rights.

Mr. Baskin, who was the first black foreman in the Memphis Sanitation Department, was also a juvenile court probation officer for more than 30 years before retiring from the City of Memphis as a zone supervisor, a position he held for 29 years.

 

Department of Media Relations

Tennessee State University
3500 John Merritt Boulevard
Nashville, Tennessee 37209
615.963.5331

About Tennessee State University

With more than 9,000 students, Tennessee State University is Nashville’s only public university, and is a comprehensive, urban, co-educational, land-grant university offering 38 undergraduate, 25 graduate and seven doctoral programs. TSU has earned a top 20 ranking for Historically Black Colleges and Universities according to U.S. News and World Report, and rated as one of the top universities in the country by Washington Monthly for social mobility, research and community service. Founded in 1912, Tennessee State University celebrated 100 years in Nashville during 2012. Visit the University online at tnstate.edu.

 

TSU Freshman Receives $18,000 U.S. Air Force Three-Year Scholarship

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (TSU News Service) – Jerry Kibet is one step closer to realizing his dream of becoming a pilot.

Kibet, a TSU freshman majoring in aeronautical and industrial technology, has received an $18,000 scholarship from the U.S. Air Force.

The three-year scholarship, offered under the Air Force’s Type 2 scholarship program, will cover tuition, fees and books. Mostly candidates in the technical fields qualify for this scholarship. Recipients must complete AFROTC training during their freshman year to retain eligibility for their sophomore year.

Kibet, a native of Kenya, is the first TSU student in more than three years to receive the Air Force’s Type 2 scholarship.

Tennessee State University officials and members of AFROTC Detachment 790 participate in the swearing-in ceremony for U.S. Air Force Cadet Jerry Kibet, under the T-38 Talon aircraft on the main campus. (Photo by John Cross, TSU Media Relations)

At a ceremony Tuesday, Kibet signed a contract with the Air Force and was sworn-in as a cadet. He will train with the AFROTC Detachment 790 at Tennessee State University.

Detachment Commander, Lt. Col. Sharon Presley, conducted the swearing-in ceremony under the T-38 Talon aircraft on the main campus.

She described Kibet as an individual with “academic excellence, physical excellence, and excellence in leadership.”

“It is an honor and a privilege to see a brilliant young leader who is ready to serve his country receive this award,” Presley said. “This is quite an honor for our detachment, for TSU and for the United States of America.”

Kibet, whose academic concentration is in aviation flight, said his passion for flying started at a very early age during a flight to Dubai with his parents. On their return home, he said he realized that he lived in an area that was “on a flight path.”

“Every day planes would fly over,” Kibet said. “The more I saw them go by the more my passion grew about flying until I graduated high school and came to TSU, where I was introduced to Lt. Col. Presley.”

He said Presley talked to him about the Air Fore and immediately he knew his prayers had been answered.

“Hopefully, I will become the first pilot in my family and another pilot from TSU,” Kibet said.  “My greatest goal is to represent my detachment, be loyal to my country and defend my people at all cost. I am very grateful to the U.S. Air Force and Tennessee State University for this award and this opportunity.”

Dr. Curtis Johnson, TSU’s associate vice president for administration, who represented President Glenda Glover at the swearing-in, congratulated Kibet.

“This is great for TSU, great for Jerry and great for the Air Force,” Johnson said. “Jerry is a fine student.”

Members of AFROTC Detachment 790 at the ceremony were Maj. Michael Gordon, operations officer; SSgt. Keshawn Lipscomb, NCOIC administration management; and Sgt. Christopher Sankey, NCOIC personnel. Also at the ceremony was Air Force Retired Lt. Col. Michelangelo McCallister, TSU’s executive director of Auxiliary Accounts.

Department of Media Relations

Tennessee State University
3500 John Merritt Boulevard
Nashville, Tennessee 37209
615.963.5331

About Tennessee State University

With more than 9,000 students, Tennessee State University is Nashville’s only public university, and is a comprehensive, urban, co-educational, land-grant university offering 38 undergraduate, 25 graduate and seven doctoral programs. TSU has earned a top 20 ranking for Historically Black Colleges and Universities according to U.S. News and World Report, and rated as one of the top universities in the country by Washington Monthly for social mobility, research and community service. Founded in 1912, Tennessee State University celebrated 100 years in Nashville during 2012. Visit the University online at tnstate.edu.

TSU head basketball coach Dana Ford holds third successful summer camp

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (TSU News Service) – TSU head basketball coach Dana Ford recently held his third summer camp to give youngsters a chance to learn the fundamentals of the game, and just have some fun.

Camp participant Genna Hickerson prepares to make a move. (Photo by John Cross, TSU Media Relations)

About 60 youth ages 7-13 attended the camp held last week in Tennessee State University’s Gentry Complex.

They participated in a number of different drills and games designed to develop their basketball skills and overall understanding of the game.

“Our staff really enjoys being able to serve this community with free camps,” Ford said. “Physical activity is good for the kids, and the most important thing is that we teach them to have fun playing basketball. Hopefully we picked up some lifelong TSU fans along the way.”

Ford’s camp is among close to 40 camps this summer at Tennessee State.

Other camps include the Verizon Innovative Learning Camp (6/5-6/16); CAMA Blues Kids Camp (7/3 – 7/7), Summer Math Academy (7/9 – 7/21), Edward L. Graves Summer Band Camp (6/24 – 7/1), STEM Summer Camp (6/19 – 7/21), and Upward Bound Program (6/4 – 7/7).

For a complete list of summer camps and programs, and contacts, go to http://www.tnstate.edu/events/camps.aspx

 

Department of Media Relations

Tennessee State University
3500 John Merritt Boulevard
Nashville, Tennessee 37209
615.963.5331

About Tennessee State University

With more than 9,000 students, Tennessee State University is Nashville’s only public university, and is a comprehensive, urban, co-educational, land-grant university offering 38 undergraduate, 25 graduate and seven doctoral programs. TSU has earned a top 20 ranking for Historically Black Colleges and Universities according to U.S. News and World Report, and rated as one of the top universities in the country by Washington Monthly for social mobility, research and community service. Founded in 1912, Tennessee State University celebrated 100 years in Nashville during 2012. Visit the University online at tnstate.edu.

 

TSU Summer Camps Give Youngsters Fun, Educational and Real-world Experience

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (TSU News Service) – Summer is here! And it’s that time of the year when Tennessee State University hosts camps to allow youngsters to have some fun, as well as educate them and provide some real-world experience.

New this year is the Verizon Innovative Learning Summer Camp, which runs from June 5 – 16. It is part of a partnership between the Verizon Foundation, the Department of Computer Science in TSU’s College of Engineering, and local middle schools. The goal is to engage minority males in grades 6 – 8 to interact with technology.

Middle school students attending the Verizon Innovative Learning Summer Camp receive instructions from program facilitators in a computer science lab at TSU. (Photo by Emmanuel Freeman, TSU Media Relations)

Dr. Tamara Rogers, TSU associate professor of computer science and a coordinator of the Verizon camp, said participants will learn tools such as the MIT App Inventor, an innovative beginner’s introduction to programming and app creation.

“Students will design and build prototype of mobile apps, as well as do hands-on labs,” Rogers said. “Students in this program will also continue throughout the academic year. Once a month they will come to the TSU campus and continue building on their mobile app.”

For those into music and the arts, about 80 youngsters ages 4-17 will get a chance to participate in the Community Academy of Music and Arts, which kicks off on the main campus Monday, June 5. The one-week community-based initiative includes summer camps for music, piano, drama, and visual and literary arts. It is designed to expose participants to different artistic mediums, crafts and songs.

“Our program is learner and service centered to create awareness of TSU in the community,” said CAMA director Dylan Griffith. “My wish is that these camps provide diverse and quality instruction that promotes creativity and inquiry.”

Music instructor Kerry Frazier, Jr., acquaints participants with program activities during the first day of CAMA All-Star Music Camp at TSU. (Photo by Emmanuel Freeman, TSU Media Relations)

CAMA and the Verizon Innovation Learning Summer Camp are just two of several fun, entertaining and educational programs and camps at TSU this summer. Overall, nearly 1,500 students from elementary to college freshmen are expected on the university’s two campuses. Some are coming from as far away as Iowa, Maryland and Oklahoma.

In addition to early learning activities for kids 5 years and up — such as Little Tigers Football Camp, and Basketball Kids Camp — summer camp themes and subjects range from science, applied mathematics and engineering, to music, athletics, real-world scientific work, and cutting-edge research.

A returning favorite this year is the Summer Apprenticeship Program, or SAP, offered by the College of Agriculture. It is a science-based initiative for college freshmen and rising high school seniors that exposes them to cutting-edge research. It runs from June 12 – July 14. Thirty students from 10 states will participate in the program this year.

William F. Hayslett, Sr., is the coordinator of SAP. He said the program, intended as a recruitment tool, is meeting its goal of encouraging participants to return to TSU for their college careers. He reported a more than 60 percent success rate of the program now in its third year.

“Our goal here is to make students aware of the academic programs in the College of Agriculture, Human and Natural Sciences and the many career opportunities available to its graduates,” Hayslett said.

Other summer camps are CAMA Blues Kids Camp (7/3 – 7/7), Summer Math Academy (7/9 – 7/21), Edward L. Graves Summer Band Camp (6/24 – 7/1), STEM Summer Camp (6/19 – 7/21), and Upward Bound Program (6/4 – 7/7), among others.

For a complete list of summer camps and programs, and contacts, go to http://www.tnstate.edu/events/camps.aspx

 

Department of Media Relations

Tennessee State University
3500 John Merritt Boulevard
Nashville, Tennessee 37209
615.963.5331

About Tennessee State University

With more than 9,000 students, Tennessee State University is Nashville’s only public university, and is a comprehensive, urban, co-educational, land-grant university offering 38 undergraduate, 25 graduate and seven doctoral programs. TSU has earned a top 20 ranking for Historically Black Colleges and Universities according to U.S. News and World Report, and rated as one of the top universities in the country by Washington Monthly for social mobility, research and community service. Founded in 1912, Tennessee State University celebrated 100 years in Nashville during 2012. Visit the University online at tnstate.edu.

 

Tennessee State University working on documentary about news radio broadcast pioneer Don Whitehead

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (TSU News Service) – Tennessee State University’s Communications Department is honoring a pioneer in news radio broadcasting: TSU alum Don Whitehead.

Don Whitehead and nationally syndicated radio personality Tom Joyner at TSU’s 2017 undergraduate spring commencement. (Photo by John Cross, TSU Media Relations)

The department is creating a documentary about Whitehead, the first African-American hired as a full-time announcer at Nashville-based WLAC, a clear channel radio station whose signal during its early years reached most of the Eastern and Midwestern United States, in addition to southern Canada and the Caribbean.

“Don Whitehead was the first African-American to work with a station with that reach and that is a CBS affiliate,” said Joe Richie, director of TSU’s Center for Media Arts and Production.

After studying drama and receiving a bachelor’s degree from Tennessee State in 1967, Whitehead continued his studies at the historically black college, hoping to earn a master’s in theater.

But he was soon informed by the then-dean of TSU’s Arts and Sciences Department that he had been chosen to speak with representatives of WLAC. After about three meetings, he agreed to take the position as radio broadcaster.

His hiring came at a critical time in American history: shortly after the assassination of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. in 1968.

It wasn’t long before Whitehead was approached by WLAC sales manager E.G. Blackman, who told Whitehead that he was going to have a new assignment. Due to the racial unrest in the southern states – where the majority of the station’s listeners lived – Blackman and other station associates decided to use Whitehead to reach out to the black community.

Whitehead broadcasted from historically black colleges across the southern U.S., encouraging African-American youth to attend school. He was on his way to becoming a prominent part of WLAC’s rich history.

In the late 1940s, when country music became a big business, WLAC added early-morning and Saturday-afternoon shows. But historians say it was the station’s quartet of nighttime rhythm and blues shows in the 1950s, 60s and 70s that made it legendary. WLAC described itself as the nighttime station for half the nation with African-American listeners, especially in the Deep South, as the intended audience of the programs.

“WLAC had a 50,000-watt clear signal that bounced across the stratosphere as the most powerful force in R&B broadcasting in America,” said Michael Gray, the Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum’s editor. “The influence WLAC wielded in America during the Nashville station’s heyday from the late 1940s until the early 1970s can hardly be overstated.”

In 1980, WLAC changed its format to news and talk, and is currently the Nashville home for several popular conservative talk shows. However, the station’s early history and Whitehead’s influence have not been forgotten.

The Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum included Whitehead in its 2004-05 major exhibition, Night Train to Nashville: Music City Rhythm & Blues, 1945–1970.

 “He … played a considerable, unique role in covering the era’s conflicts,” Gray said of Whitehead, who was a WLAC radio broadcaster for nine years before signing on with WLAC-TV in sales and advertising. “We appreciate the personal insights and perspectives he offered our visitors during related educational programs.”

Last year, Richie and Brian Day, assistant professor of film and TV production at TSU, traveled to Georgia to meet and interview Whitehead.

“After spending the afternoon with Don, I felt that his personality and story would make a compelling documentary,” Day said. “I hope to have the film wrapped up by the end of the summer/start of the fall. My plan is to submit it to film festivals and then to PBS.”

Richie said the department also plans to launch a campaign this summer to set up a $25,000 foundation scholarship in Whitehead’s name.

Department of Media Relations

Tennessee State University
3500 John Merritt Boulevard
Nashville, Tennessee 37209
615.963.5331

About Tennessee State University

With more than 9,000 students, Tennessee State University is Nashville’s only public university, and is a comprehensive, urban, co-educational, land-grant university offering 38 undergraduate, 25 graduate and seven doctoral programs. TSU has earned a top 20 ranking for Historically Black Colleges and Universities according to U.S. News and World Report, and rated as one of the top universities in the country by Washington Monthly for social mobility, research and community service. Founded in 1912, Tennessee State University celebrated 100 years in Nashville during 2012. Visit the University online at tnstate.edu.

 

Tennessee State University Receives Best Value School Designation for 2017

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (TSU News Service) – Tennessee State University is a Best Value School for 2017.

TSU was among 80 universities and colleges nationwide to receive the designation by University Research and Review, a technology platform that researches, reviews and suggests colleges, universities and career schools.

According to the UR&R website, institutions receiving the Best Value School designation are “good, reasonably priced colleges loved by students and alumni, and selected based on research by higher education experts.”

These institutions also offer students a unique balance of academics, student life and financial manageability, the site said.

The 2017 Best Value School designation is just one of many national recognitions TSU has received recently.

Earlier this year, the university was ranked No.7 in the nation as the Most Affordable Online College for RN and MSN Programs. This followed TSU’s MSN program’s No. 2 ranking among the 50 Best Graduate Nursing Schools in America for 2016.

Department of Media Relations

Tennessee State University
3500 John Merritt Boulevard
Nashville, Tennessee 37209
615.963.5331

About Tennessee State University

With more than 9,000 students, Tennessee State University is Nashville’s only public university, and is a comprehensive, urban, co-educational, land-grant university offering 38 undergraduate, 25 graduate and seven doctoral programs. TSU has earned a top 20 ranking for Historically Black Colleges and Universities according to U.S. News and World Report, and rated as one of the top universities in the country by Washington Monthly for social mobility, research and community service. Founded in 1912, Tennessee State University celebrated 100 years in Nashville during 2012. Visit the University online at tnstate.edu.

TSU excels in Providing Interns for mayor’s Opportunity NOW Program

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (TSU News Service) – Tennessee State University is putting more students to work this summer under Mayor Megan Barry’s Opportunity NOW program.

A report from the mayor’s office shows that 51 TSU students applied for positions with the program, more than any other university or college in the Davidson County area.

An initiative launched earlier this year by Mayor Barry, Opportunity NOW seeks to provide young people in Davidson County access to employment.

Treasure Giddens, a senior chemistry major from Detroit, is one of the TSU student interns in the program this year. She will work as a peer coach at McGavock High School.

“I am excited about the opportunity to mentor students, something I have always loved to do,” Giddens said.

Through its Experiential Learning and Job Development office, TSU’s Career Development Center partnered with the mayor’s workforce development team to see how TSU students could benefit from the program.

Charles Jennings, the center’s director, said “the response was great.”

“We were presented with an opportunity to provide students for the program,” Jennings said. “As a team, we marketed it heavily to a lot of students who came to our office who were looking for summer internships. To hear from the mayor’s office that we topped other schools just goes to show how well prepared our students are to embrace the workforce.”

The goal is to hire 9,000 young people — ages 15-24 — for summer employment with businesses and organizations around Nashville.

“We want to connect youth to hope, and that means connecting them to opportunity and jobs,” Barry said at the launching of the program. “I want for our youth what I want for everyone in our city – a chance to succeed.”

Christina Smith is also participating in the program.  A senior psychology major from Memphis, she is thinking about teaching after graduate school. She is assigned to Hunters Lane High School, where she will teach job training skills to students.

“I think this is a great opportunity for me to just get a feel of how kids younger than me operate and how to go about interacting with them,” Smith said.

On how TSU was able to attract so many students to the Opportunity NOW program in such a short period, Chandria Harris, coordinator of Experiential Learning and Job Development, said “teamwork and getting all departments involved was very helpful.”

“From Tiger Track to collaborating with other colleges and coordinators and directors, posting the information, and going after students who needed internships, we were able to capture the 51 students,” Harris said.

The partnership with Opportunity NOW is just one of many efforts the Career Development Center has initiated to expose TSU students to career and job opportunities.

That, combined with the level of job-readiness preparation students are receiving in the classroom, is making TSU graduates more attractive to potential employers.

For instance, a number of students who received degrees at TSU’s May commencement are fully employed at some of the nation’s major companies, such as Lockheed Martin, Boeing, Bank of America, BMW and Raytheon.

“I am so pleased with the innovative and exemplary work executed by our CDC team,” said Dr. Jame’l Hodges, assistant vice president for administrative support in TSU’s Division of Student Affairs. “The CDC team and overall Division of Student Affairs will continue to raise the bar in meeting industry standards, and aligning with high- impact practices all while upholding the mission of TSU.”

For more information about TSU’s Career Development Center, visit http://www.tnstate.edu/careers/

 

Department of Media Relations

Tennessee State University
3500 John Merritt Boulevard
Nashville, Tennessee 37209
615.963.5331

About Tennessee State University

With more than 9,000 students, Tennessee State University is Nashville’s only public university, and is a comprehensive, urban, co-educational, land-grant university offering 38 undergraduate, 25 graduate and seven doctoral programs. TSU has earned a top 20 ranking for Historically Black Colleges and Universities according to U.S. News and World Report, and rated as one of the top universities in the country by Washington Monthly for social mobility, research and community service. Founded in 1912, Tennessee State University celebrated 100 years in Nashville during 2012. Visit the University online at tnstate.edu.

 

Tennessee State University’s Amber Hughes Voted OVC Female Athlete of the Year

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (TSU News Service) Tennessee State University women’s track and field All-American Amber Hughes has been named Ohio Valley Conference Female Athlete of the Year for 2016-17.

The OVC office made the announcement on Wednesday, May 24.

Hughes, who won the honor after a vote by the conference’s athletic directors and sports information directors, will receive her award on June 2 at the OVC’s annual Honors Brunch at DoubleTree Nashville Downtown. It marks the 13th major OVC award for Hughes in her career.

For her career, Amber Hughes has won 26 OVC individual gold medals. (Courtesy photo)

Hughes is the second-ever TSU female student-athlete to win the award since its inception in 1981. Fellow track star Clairwin Dameus was TSU’s first female award winner when she took home the honor last year.

Throughout the year, Hughes, a senior, has been a dominant force for the Tigerbelles. During the indoor season, the Atlanta native repeated as OVC Track Athlete of the Year and OVC Field Athlete of the Year – the only student-athlete in conference history to accomplish the feat. Hughes went on to win four gold medals at the OVC Indoor Championship, as well as an individual silver, and one with the 4x400m relay team en route to Female Athlete of the Championship honors.

Continuing her indoor season, Hughes secured USTFCCCA Second Team All-America honors for the triple jump after placing 11th at the 2017 NCAA Indoor Championships in College Station, Texas.

Hughes continued to reel in honors during the outdoor season, winning OVC Field Athlete of the Year. At the OVC Outdoor Championship, Hughes accounted for three individual gold medals, plus one in the 4x400m relay, as well as one individual bronze. She was again awarded Female Athlete of the Championship.

For her career, Hughes has won 26 OVC individual gold medals.

She has two more opportunities to don the TSU uniform in competition. She will compete in the NCAA East Preliminary Round set for May 25-27 in Lexington, Kentucky, and hopes to qualify for the NCAA National Championships scheduled for June 7-10 in ­Eugene, Oregon.

As a whole, TSU has now had four OVC Athlete of the Year honorees: Carlos Rogers (1994 – Men’s Basketball), Charles Anthony (2005 – Football), Clairwin Dameus (2016- Women’s Track and Field), and Amber Hughes (2017 – Women’s Track and Field).

AMBER HUGHES MAJOR OVC AWARDS
2017 OVC Female Athlete of the Year (All Sports)
2017 OVC Outdoor Championship MVP
2017 OVC Outdoor Field Athlete of the Year
2017 OVC Indoor Track Athlete of the Year
2017 OVC Indoor Field Athlete of the Year
2017 OVC Indoor Championship MVP
2016 OVC Outdoor Championship MVP
2016 OVC Outdoor Field Athlete of the Year
2016 OVC Indoor Track Athlete of the Year
2016 OVC Indoor Field Athlete of the Year
2015 OVC Outdoor Championship MVP
2014 OVC Indoor Freshman of the Year
2014 OVC Outdoor Freshman of the Year

Department of Media Relations

Tennessee State University
3500 John Merritt Boulevard
Nashville, Tennessee 37209
615.963.5331

About Tennessee State University

With more than 9,000 students, Tennessee State University is Nashville’s only public university, and is a comprehensive, urban, co-educational, land-grant university offering 38 undergraduate, 25 graduate and seven doctoral programs. TSU has earned a top 20 ranking for Historically Black Colleges and Universities according to U.S. News and World Report, and rated as one of the top universities in the country by Washington Monthly for social mobility, research and community service. Founded in 1912, Tennessee State University celebrated 100 years in Nashville during 2012. Visit the University online at tnstate.edu.

 

TSU Engineering Students Receive praise for design of Transport Vehicle for Military Special Operations Forces

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (TSU News Service) – Students from TSU’s College of Engineering were praised recently for their design of a special transport vehicle for the U.S. Air Force Special Operations Forces.

They were among students from nine other institutions who competed in the annual University Design Challenge last month at Arnold Air Force Base in Tullahoma, Tennessee.

Nine students and their advisers from the TSU College of Engineering participate in the 2017 Annual University Design Challenge at Arnold Air Force Base in Tullahoma, Tennessee. (Submitted photo)

The three-day competition, organized by the Air Force Research Laboratory, brings together different student teams from around the country to compete for top honors in a task assigned by the AFRL.

Teams were given two semesters to develop, design and build a prototype of their project for the competition that ended April 13.

The physical and mental stress of carrying heavy loads causes significant performance degradation and injury during training and while conducting military operations, according to AFRL officials.

During these missions, operators typically carry more than 100 pounds of gear, and require resupply of mission gear and equipment.

This year, the teams were to design a resupply device that operates manually, or autonomously programmed or controlled, to haul items on rough and unimproved surfaces. The device must be able to carry a minimum 350 pounds of gear, traveling two miles at a speed of 3-25 miles per hour without refueling. It must also be able to traverse narrow paths, climb steps, and navigate over rocks and log gaps.

The TSU student team designed, built and demonstrated an autonomous vehicle that met the required specifications.

“We were really happy with our performance,” said TSU team-member Charles McFadden, a mechanical engineering major, who graduated May 6. “Our team put in a lot of work. It turned out probably better than we thought we could do in that short period of time and the resources given to us.”

He said judges were very happy with the TSU design, calling their team “the best they have had from TSU.”

Dr. Landon Onyebueke, professor of mechanical engineering at Tennessee State, was one of the faculty advisers on the TSU team. He said the students’ performance was above average.

“The project actually was very good for the students,” Onyebueke said. “The design performed very well. They put a lot into it. It was a very good practice for the students.”

Dr. S. Keith Hargrove, dean of TSU’s College of Engineering, said the college has maintained a strong partnership with AFRL for more than 20 years that offers internships and helps TSU students conduct major research.

“We remain committed to this partnership and appreciate the support from AFRL, Clarkson Aerospace, and other partners in preparing our engineers for the workforce,” Hargrove said.

Other members of the TSU team were: Antony Currie, electrical engineering; Kevin Scott, electrical engineering; Larry Perdue, electrical engineering; Donald Toohey, mechanical engineering; Michael Winters, mechanical engineering; William Sanders, computer science; Ryan Brisentine, computer science; and Danielle Haik, computer science.

Dr. Fenghui Yao, professor of computer science, was the other TSU student adviser.

Department of Media Relations

Tennessee State University
3500 John Merritt Boulevard
Nashville, Tennessee 37209
615.963.5331

About Tennessee State University

With more than 9,000 students, Tennessee State University is Nashville’s only public university, and is a comprehensive, urban, co-educational, land-grant university offering 38 undergraduate, 25 graduate and seven doctoral programs. TSU has earned a top 20 ranking for Historically Black Colleges and Universities according to U.S. News and World Report, and rated as one of the top universities in the country by Washington Monthly for social mobility, research and community service. Founded in 1912, Tennessee State University celebrated 100 years in Nashville during 2012. Visit the University online at tnstate.edu.

Tennessee State University to receive nearly $500K federal grant to expand nationally recognized goat research

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (TSU News Service) – Tennessee State University will receive nearly half a million dollars from the U.S. Department of Agriculture to expand its research on goat meat production.

The USDA’s National Institute of Food and Agriculture on May 16 announced 47 grants totaling almost $17.5 million to improve sustainable agriculture and help rural communities thrive.

Tennessee State leads the nation in research that seeks to boost goat production in the U.S., and plans to use its $496,328 grant to enhance that research.

“We’re pleased that we’re able to get funding to continue our line of investigation on meat goat breeds and their comparative performance,” said Dr. Richard Browning, the lead goat researcher in TSU’s College of Agriculture, Human and Natural Sciences.

Nationwide, agriculture researchers say there’s a demand for goat meat because of a growing population of ethnic groups within the U.S. that consume it, not to mention an increasing number of Americans who are choosing goat over other meats, like chicken and beef, because dietitians say it’s healthier.

To meet the demand, much of the goat meat now in the U.S. is imported from other countries. But TSU’s research, which started in 2002, seeks to change that.

Emily Hayes, a TSU graduate student and research assistant, among some of the breeding does. (Photo by Joan Kite, TSU Public Relations)

“I probably give 10, 12 talks a year across the country on the research,” Browning said. “We have a lot of ethnic groups that have goat as a main part of their diet, and that’s why there’s a demand for goat meat. But we don’t produce enough here.”

TSU’s research herd is comprised of approximately 250 breeding does representing diverse sets of Boer, Kiko, Spanish, Myotonic and Savanna genetics.

Browning said the latest funding from the USDA will mainly be used to study the fifth meat goat breed recently brought into the research program.

“This project is targeting the Savanna goats, which is one of the newer breeds that the industry is looking at as a possible source of improved animal performance,” Browning said.

He said the research is shared with producers, farmers, to help them be more effective in their goat production.

“The other part of this project is to train producers in the detection and management of internal parasites,” said Browning, adding that TSU will be working with goat researchers at Alabama A&M University.

Delicious dish of goat meat at Jamaicaway restaurant in Nashville. (Photo by Courtney Buggs, TSU Media Relations).

Goat meat is naturally lean, meaning it is much lower in saturated fat and cholesterol, having a naturally higher HDL count (the good cholesterol) and a naturally low LDL count (the bad kind of cholesterol), according to the National Kiko Registry. It is also lower in calories than other meats, like beef, and is easier to digest.

Dr. Sandria Godwin is a family and consumer science professor at TSU, as well as a registered dietitian. She has worked with Dr. Browning to produce goat meat recipes.

“It is definitely a healthier choice,” Godwin said.

Heritage Foods USA is an online butcher based in Brooklyn, New York, that supports farmers who raise livestock, including goats. Its cuts are sold to customers in all 50 states, as well as carried in 130 restaurants from New York City to Los Angeles.

The company is an advocate for more U.S. production of goat meat.

“Goats are environmentally low-maintenance and easy to raise,” said Patrick Martins, co-founder of Heritage Foods. “Goat is actually the most widely consumed meat in the world – and America is slowly learning what the rest of the world already knows – that goat meat is delicious, lean, versatile, healthy, and sustainable.”

To learn more about Tennessee State University’s goat research, visit: http://www.tnstate.edu/faculty/rbrowning/.

 

Department of Media Relations

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About Tennessee State University

With more than 9,000 students, Tennessee State University is Nashville’s only public university, and is a comprehensive, urban, co-educational, land-grant university offering 38 undergraduate, 25 graduate and seven doctoral programs. TSU has earned a top 20 ranking for Historically Black Colleges and Universities according to U.S. News and World Report, and rated as one of the top universities in the country by Washington Monthly for social mobility, research and community service. Founded in 1912, Tennessee State University celebrated 100 years in Nashville during 2012. Visit the University online at tnstate.edu.