All posts by Lucas Johnson

Consortium at TSU brings together honors programs from local universities

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (TSU News Service) – Tennessee State University’s Honors College recently hosted a retreat that brought honors programs at several local universities together for the first time.

Consortium participants. (Submitted photo, TSU Media Relations)

The National Collegiate Honors Council Nashville Honors Consortium was held Sept. 16 in the McDonald Williams Honors Center at TSU. Besides TSU, the other participating schools were: Belmont University, Fisk University and Lipscomb University.

“This is a great opportunity for our universities to come together and share knowledge, collective experiences, collaborate in service learning projects, and break down the racial and cultural divide,” said Dr. Coreen Jackson, interim dean of the Honors College at TSU and NCHC board member.

The consortium itinerary included training on servant leadership, team-building activities, philosophy of leadership, consortium planning activities, and a collective vision exercise.

The Honors directors from each school, along with their students, also participated in sharing their experience in leadership.

“This is my last year at Tennessee State University and I’ve always longed for an opportunity to interact with students from the other colleges in Nashville,” said Mikayla Jones, president of TSU’s Honors Student Council. “Platforms like this retreat should happen more often because we have so much to learn from one another.”

Leaders of the Nashville Honors Consortium plan to share their collaborative experience with the NCHC conference in Atlanta in November. The proposed panel presentation is entitled, Creating a Local Honors Consortium: an Example from Nashville, Tennessee.

“It was exciting to meet and work with this collective group of honors student leaders from Honors programs and colleges around the city,” said Dr. Tyrone Miller, associate director of TSU’s Honors College. “I think it is a great initiative and provides a good example for how other colleges can explore new possibilities for joint programming and sharing ideas in the future.”

To learn more about TSU’s Honors College, visit http://www.tnstate.edu/honors/about/welcome_page.aspx

 

About Tennessee State University

Tennessee State University is Nashville’s only public university, and is a comprehensive, urban, co-educational, land-grant university offering 38 bachelor’s degree programs, 25 master’s degree programs and seven doctoral degrees. 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 Scholarship Gala aiming for $1 million to help students succeed

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (TSU News Service) – Keirra Ware feared she might not be able to return to Tennessee State University, but a scholarship put her mind at ease.

“Without the scholarship, I would have had to stay home because I wouldn’t have had enough money to come back to school,” Ware said. “When I saw it, I almost cried.”

Ware, a junior majoring in biochemistry, is among countless students who breathe easier thanks to funds raised through TSU’s Scholarship Gala held Homecoming week.

TSU’s Homecoming this year is on Oct. 14, when the Tigers will take on the Governors of Austin Peay State University at Nissan Stadium. The gala will take place on Friday, Oct. 13, at the Music City Center. Nationally syndicated radio show host, actor and comedian, Rickey Smiley, will be the gala’s master of ceremony.

The gala provides critical funds necessary to meet the significant need for student scholarships and ensures access to the relevant academic programs required to successfully educate and prepare students for the global marketplace.

Last year, the gala raised over $600,000, and the goal this year is $1 million.

“The scholarship gala is the most important event other than the football contest,” said Homecoming Chairman Grant Winrow. “This is by far the biggest effort by the university to raise scholarship money.”

 Nashville Mayor Megan Barry is the gala honorary chair this year. Also, the chair of the TSU Board of Trustees, Dr. Joseph Walker, III, and vice chair, Dr. Deborah Cole, are serving as honorary gala co-chairs.

In addition, the gala will recognize a “stellar group” of honorees and grand marshals. They include Dr. Frederick S. Humphries, who will receive a Special Presidential Recognition. Humphries, TSU’s fourth president, served from 1974-1985.

Other honorees are: Dr. Sterlin Adams, retired, professor and special assistant to Dr. Humphries; Dr. Evelyn P. Fancher, retired, director of libraries; Dr. Raymond Richardson, retired professor and chair of physics, mathematics and computer science; and William “Bill” Thomas, former head football coach and athletic director.

The grand marshals are: Georgette “Gigi” Peek Dixon, senior vice president and director of national partnerships, government and community relations at Wells Fargo; Alfred Gordon, vice president of operations for Frito-Lay North America; State Senator Thelma Harper, 19th District, Tennessee General Assembly; and Roosevelt “Bud” Reese, CEO of CMI Foundation.

“We have a stellar group of very accomplished individuals with proven track records of successes in their respective career fields,” Winrow said. “I think their selfless commitment of service and helping others is the commonality they all share.”

For more information about the gala and how to donate, visit http://www.tnstate.edu/gala/.

To find out more about TSU’s overall Homecoming this year, visit http://www.tnstate.edu/alumni/homecoming/documents/HomecomingSchedule.pdf.

 

About Tennessee State University

Tennessee State University is Nashville’s only public university, and is a comprehensive, urban, co-educational, land-grant university offering 38 bachelor’s degree programs, 25 master’s degree programs and seven doctoral degrees. 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 build new residence halls with 75 million dollar expansion

By Michael McLendon

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (TSU News Service) – New buildings to call home! That’s what future Tennessee State University students will have when two new residence halls are completed.

The $75,300,000 project is one step closer to reality following approval for construction from the State Building Commission. The plan was presented by the Tennessee Board of Regents for TSU’s student modernization program late Thursday morning.

“Anytime a university can expand its footprint, that is a definite sign of growth,” said TSU President Glenda Glover. “The additional housing will benefit our students, as well as the entire Tennessee State University family.”

With the increased expense of off-campus housing and a record-setting freshman class at TSU, President Glover stated that the new housing is critical in the recruitment and retention of students.

“New residence halls represent a remarkable recruiting tool, and add to the life of any college campus,” Glover added.

State Senator Thelma Harper, a TSU alumnae and staunch supporter of the university’s construction plan, issued a press release just minutes after the commission gave the student housing development the green light.

“Student housing has a big effect on their education,” Harper said. “Across this country, many universities have already tapped into the benefits of ‘Live and Learn’ dorm environments which ultimately attracts more students and results in increased enrollment.”

Cynthia Brooks, TSU Vice President of Business Finance, explained that the debt for the buildings will be repaid from student housing fees, and that the next steps included the design phase.

“The next step is to engage an architect who will get campus input and design the new facilities,” Brooks said.  “That process should be completed by December 2018.  Contractor bidding and selection will then occur, with actual construction projected to begin Summer 2019.”

The announcement comes at a critical time for TSU housing as more students are deciding to transition back to campus because of the high cost of living in the city of Nashville. Dr. Tracy Ford, head of Student Affairs, echoed that sentiment.

“We are extremely happy to receive this great news,” said Ford, the vice president of Student Affairs for TSU. “The university’s goal is to have the freshman class of 2020, as well as returning students, as the first occupants of these new halls.”

The residence halls additions, combined with Glover’s recent announcement of two new academic buildings, are signs of a new era of expansion at TSU. While details about the new engineering facility are yet to be disclosed, Glover informed the TSU community during the university’s opening convocation that $40,000,000 has been secured for the construction of a health sciences facility.

 

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 bachelor’s degree programs, 25 master’s degree programs and seven doctoral degrees. 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’s 2017 Homecoming has “stellar group” of honorees and grand marshals

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (TSU News Service) – Tennessee State University is planning a spectacular 2017 Homecoming that includes a “stellar group” of honorees, grand marshals and star power.

TSU’s Homecoming is slated for Oct. 8-14, culminating with the big football matchup between the Tigers and in state rival Austin Peay State University at Nissan Stadium. This year’s Homecoming theme is: “The Road to Greatness Begins with Excellence.”

In keeping with that theme, the university has selected honorees and grand marshals that exude the excellence TSU strives for. They include Dr. Frederick S. Humphries, who will receive a Special Presidential Recognition. Dr. Humphries, TSU’s fourth president, served from 1974-1985.

Other honorees are: Dr. Sterlin Adams, retired, professor and special assistant to Dr. Humphries; Dr. Evelyn P. Fancher, retired, director of libraries; Dr. Raymond Richardson, retired, professor and chair of physics, mathematics and computer science; and William “Bill” Thomas, former head football coach and athletic director.

The grand marshals for the popular Homecoming parade are: Georgette “Gigi” Peek Dixon, senior vice president and director of national partnerships, government and community relations, Wells Fargo; Alfred Gordon, vice president of operations for Frito-Lay North America; State Senator Thelma Harper, 19th District, Tennessee General Assembly; and Roosevelt “Bud” Reese, CEO, CMI Foundation.

“We have a stellar group of very accomplished individuals with proven track records of successes in their respective career fields,” said Homecoming Chairman Grant Winrow. “I think their selfless commitment of service and helping others is the commonality they all share.”

Besides the game and parade, another major highlight of TSU’s homecoming is the Annual Scholarship Gala, which will take place on Friday, Oct. 13, at the Music City Center. This year, Nashville Mayor Megan Barry will serve as honorary chairperson. Nationally syndicated radio show host, actor and comedian, Rickey Smiley, will be the gala’s master of ceremony. Proceeds from ticket sales and sponsorships are used to provide financial assistance to students. The goal is to raise one million.

Other key Homecoming events include: Robert N. Murrell Oratorical Contest and Gospel Explosion, Oct. 8; Coronation of Mr. and Miss TSU, Oct. 11; Ralph Boston Golf Tournament and Homecoming Concert, Oct. 12; Greek Step Show and Charles Campbell Fish Fry, Oct. 13; and Homecoming Parade and Showcase of Bands, Oct. 14.

The parade will be from 14th and Jefferson Street to 33rd and John Merritt Blvd.

“We have a team of very capable and committed individuals from the university, as well as some external members from the community, who are working to raise the bar and promise to make this Homecoming one to remember for years to come,” Winrow said.

For more information about Homecoming 2017, visit http://www.tnstate.edu/alumni/homecoming/documents/HomecomingSchedule.pdf.

 

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 bachelor’s degree programs, 25 master’s degree programs and seven doctoral degrees. 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 Alum Tops Kickboxing Sport, Brings Fight to Alma Mater

By Michael McLendon

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (TSU News Service) – TSU Alum Omari Boyd will showcase his world-class kickboxing skills on Saturday, September 30, in Kean Hall at Tennessee State University, as he along with other members of the American K-1 National Team take on the Canadian K-1 National Team.

Boyd, who became the first American kickboxer in history to receive a medal at the World Games in Poland in 2017, says he got his start as a competitive kickboxer at TSU.

“I met Kevin Walker, and he was doing a beginners mixed martial arts class at the school in the wellness center,” Boyd said. “While taking the class he saw that I had potential. We knew some of the same people, and he offered me my first fight in 2009.”

Since that time, Boyd has progressed to a 70-4 record as a kickboxer, obtaining at least one title belt in every major organization in the United States.

“What’s unique about Omari is his discipline, and he has an indomitable will,” said Walker, who trains athletes to compete for Team USA. “When you combine that with his humility, that’s really hard to find anywhere else.”

Walker, who started his mixed martial arts fitness program at the Ralph H. Boston Wellness Center in 2009, took two other TSU students to the world championships in MMA in 2016. He said Boyd’s experience as a competitive athlete in karate and swimming, and his love for learning, made transitioning to competitive kickboxing a natural fit.

“He did very good his first time out, and from that point I just asked him what he wanted from it.   He just looked me in my eyes and said, ‘I want to be the best in the world?’ Once he said that, I said, ‘Okay. Let’s do it. Let’s do those things to make sure you are the best in the world.’”

Victorious in eight different countries, Boyd has managed to perform at an elite level as a kickboxing champion while maintaining a full-time job as a civil structural engineer with the Thomas and Betts Corporation in Memphis, Tennessee. He credits hard work and dedication as being keys to his success.

“Once I set my mind to something, I just want to be the best at it—hands down,” Boyd said. “Wherever it takes me, it takes me. Wherever being the best leads, I’m going.”

Boyd, who secured a B.S. in architectural engineering from TSU in 2008 and an M.S. in civil engineering from TSU in 2011, credits his family with motivating and inspiring him.

“My dad and my mom, they both put me in karate at a young age. They motivated me to excel in that, and the same thing with swimming,” he said. “I just have younger brothers and sisters. They kind of look up to me so I just tread lightly on things I do because I know there are a lot of eyes on me.”

His mother, Agnes Boyd, who currently serves as Instructor of Sports and Fitness in the TSU Department of Human Performance and Health Sciences, said she always taught her son to be positive.

“I always told my children you can be and do anything you say you want to do. Never say, ‘Shoulda’ woulda’ coulda.’ You just do it. If you fail, that doesn’t mean you failed. You tried it,” she said. “He told me, ‘Mama, I want an Olympic uniform.‘ That’s what my son said before he got on the team.”

Walker said the fight on September 30 extends and expands the historic legacy for international and Olympic sports at Tennessee State University. He hopes it will be a launching pad to open and extend the course offerings and recreational intramural offerings at TSU to get more diverse students and generate funds for the university, as well as increase TSU’s international exposure.

“This particular event marks an opportunity for Tennessee State to be an epicenter and an origin that will bring national and international attention to not only the university, but the city of Nashville as we grow in our exposure and our appeal on a global scale.,” he said.

For Boyd, the fight simply represents an opportunity to do what he loves before a hometown crowd.

“Man, ya’ll come through TSU September 30th and represent,” he said with enthusiasm. “It’s been a long time since I fought at home. “

To learn more about the event, visit wakousa.org.

 

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 bachelor’s degree programs, 25 master’s degree programs and seven doctoral degrees. 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.

 

 

 

25 Top High School Seniors Awarded Full Scholarships to Attend Tennessee State University

By Emmanuel S. Freeman

MEMPHIS, Tenn. (TSU News Service) – When Meaghen Jones found out she was getting a full scholarship to attend Tennessee State University, she summed up her feelings in one word: “overwhelming!”

Dr John Cade, Vice President for Enrollment Management and Student Services, talks to Academic High Achiever Scholarship recipients Kamryn Martin, left, Brittney Johnson and Leslie Curry. (Photo by John Cross, TSU Media Relations)

“I was always sure I wanted to come to TSU, but tonight secured it,” said Jones, who was one of 25 high school seniors awarded Academic High Achiever Scholarships to TSU at a ceremony in Memphis on Wednesday. “I have worked so hard throughout just to make sure I get a full ride to college and this was just so overwhelming for me.”

Jones has a 4.2 grade point average and is ranked No. 4 out of 411 in her senior class at Whitehaven High School in Memphis. She and the other top seniors attended the Annual TSU Memphis Recruitment Reception at the Sheraton Memphis Downtown for graduating high school seniors and their parents and family members.

The reception is held each year by TSU’s Office of Admissions as part of activities leading up to the Southern Heritage Classic between TSU and Jackson State University in the Liberty Bowl. This year’s game is on Saturday.

Jones is coming to TSU as a pre-med. Her mother, Jackie Latiker, said the fact her daughter is getting a full ride is “absolutely phenomenal.“

“To see her stand before 24 other students that were selected, I am just too elated,” Latiker said. “This is what we’ve worked for all these years.”

TSU’s Vice-President for Enrollment Management and Student Services, Dr. John Cade, congratulated the scholarship recipients, and said the university’s goal is to seek out the best students, nurture them, and graduate them prepared for the global market.

“As you come to TSU, you are following in the footsteps of great people, among them our president, Dr. Glenda Glover, a Memphis native, and a very high achiever herself who believes in your potential for greatness,” Cade said. “So, having someone of that caliber to lead Tennessee State University is a prime example of what you can aspire to become and all of you can do that. We offer a number of programs at TSU that will assist you in your success.”

At the reception, more than 50 high school seniors and their parents attended to hear TSU admissions officials discuss the university’s offerings and programs.

Talia Chambers and William Edwards were also among the 25 selected for the Academic High Achiever Scholarship. To qualify for the scholarship, a student must have a 3.5 GPA or higher and 23 and above on the ACT.

Chambers, who wants to major in animal science, has a 4.0 GPA at Middle College High School. Edwards plans to study graphic design. He has a 3.5 GPA at Wooddale High School.

“I am very excited to attend Tennessee State,” Chambers said. “It is within my distance range and it has my area of study in pre-vet medicine. I came here tonight just to get some information and now here I have a full ride scholarship, this is great”

Said Edwards: “When they first called my name I was really nervous. All my siblings received full-ride scholarships to go to college. So I am just glad to be able to measure up to them with a full ride of my own. Thank you TSU.”

Several members of the Memphis chapter of the TSU National Alumni Association, friends of TSU, and the Tennessee State University Cheering Squad were on hand to cheer on the scholarship recipients.

For more information on admission to Tennessee State University, visit http://www.tnstate.edu/admissions/contact.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 bachelor’s degree programs, 25 master’s degree programs and seven doctoral degrees. 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.

 

Tigers Spoil Stadium Opening with Historic Victory Over Georgia State

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (TSU News Service) – Dajour Nesbeth intercepted a pass with a minute remaining in the game to give Tennessee State a historic 17-10 victory over Georgia State in Atlanta on Thursday.

The victory made a bit of history in that it gave the Tigers the first collegiate football win in Georgia State Stadium (formerly Turner Field).

“It was a huge win,” said TSU head football coach Rod Reed. “I’m so proud of these guys. We’ve been working all camp for this one moment. Now we’ve got to stay in the moment, and just take them one game at a time, and just move on from here.”

It was also the first win as an FCS team over an FBS opponent. TSU defeated Louisville in 1981 and in 1984 as an NCAA DI-A Independent squad. The Tigers transitioned from an NCAA DI-A team to an NCAA DI-AA team in the early 80’s.

“We’re an FCS team, and we came out there and beat an FBS team,” said junior offensive tackle Christian Morris. “They were very talented, but we handled business.”

The defense stood tall the entire game, holding GSU to 81 yards in the first half. The Tigers kept the pressure on forcing four turnovers, recording three sacks and stopping GSU on two fourth down attempts.

Go Big Blue!

 

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 bachelor’s degree programs, 25 master’s degree programs and seven doctoral degrees. 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.

Top Army officer talks to students, faculty about civilian research opportunities in military

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (TSU News Service) – A top Army officer visiting Tennessee State University talked to students and faculty on Thursday about civilian research opportunities in the military.

Maj. Gen. Cedric Wins speaks to group. (Photo by John Cross, TSU Media Relations)

Maj. Gen. Cedric T. Wins oversees the U.S. Army’s Research, Development and Engineering Command (RDECOM). With more than 14,000 employees, RDECOM performs nearly all of the Army’s basic and applied research and technology development.

Of RDECOM’s employees, 13,800 are civilians, of which 11,000 are scientists and engineers.

“It’s very common that many of the Fortune 100 companies are visiting our campus doing recruiting,” said Dr. S. Keith Hargrove, dean of TSU’s College of Engineering. “Our responsibility as faculty is also to expose students to other careers beyond the Fortune 100. That includes … the federal government, more specifically the branches of the military.”

Wins said recruitment of college students is beneficial to RDECOM down the line because of an “aging workforce where people are going to be able to transition out.”

“The large majority of my workforce is civilian, so there’s a lot of opportunity there for people who have decided that they want to serve, but they don’t want to serve in uniform for whatever reason,” Wins said.

RDECOM has several centers and laboratories that focus on research that includes armament, aviation and missiles, communications-electronics, and chemical threats.

A number of students at TSU have taken advantage of internships and other programs RDECOM offers, according to TSU research officials.

Akinwunmi Joaquim, a TSU graduate engineering student, said he’s considering one of the internships.

“I believe it will help me in what I’m doing,” said Joaquim, adding that RDECOM’s chemical research directly relates to his study of biosensors. “I’m going to tell my friends about RDECOM, and try to give them opportunities as well.”

 

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 bachelor’s degree programs, 25 master’s degree programs and seven doctoral degrees. 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.

Hundreds come to TSU for historic total solar eclipse

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (TSU News Service) – Hundreds of people came to Tennessee State University on Monday to view the total solar eclipse, a historic event most will never forget.

Hale stadium attendees await monumental solar eclipse. (Photo by Courtney Buggs, TSU Media Relations)

“This is monumental,” TSU President Glenda Glover told the crowd minutes before the sun was blacked out. “Years from now, you will recall this very moment here at TSU.”

The university had viewing events at Hale Stadium on TSU’s main campus, and at Avon Williams, the university’s downtown campus. However, the event at the stadium was undoubtedly the liveliest, with TSU’s Aristocrat of Bands entertaining attendees before the total eclipse. There was also a live DJ, as well as food.

“Tennessee State University values community partnerships,” said TSU Dean of Students Frank Stevenson. “Blue and White Solar Eclipse Day was designed to … have a safe, exciting place where we can view this once-in-a-lifetime opportunity together.”

Total black out of sun. (Photo by Courtney Buggs, TSU Media Relations)

The last time a total solar eclipse could be seen from Nashville was July 29, 1478, according to NASA. After the one Monday, the next total solar eclipse visible from Nashville will be on Aug. 16, 2566.

Dr. Virginia Tickles, a NASA engineer, was one of the speakers at the stadium. She said before the event that the eclipse is a great educational tool.

“I remember being in school and learning about this,” she said. “It’s exciting to see what we learn in day-to-day classrooms happen right here in front of us.”

Dr. Geoffrey Burks, an astronomer and associate professor of physics at TSU, said he believes the solar eclipse will spark new interest in astronomy.

“It’s just so rare to be able to see something in your lifetime where the sun is covered up in the middle of the day,” he said. “They’ll remember this a long time.”

TSU President Glenda Glover (center), TSU Board of Trustees student member Sydnie Davis (left), and TSU Student Government Association President JerMilton Woods at Hale Stadium eclipse event. (Photo by John Cross, TSU Media Relations)

TSU sophomore Taylor Adams, a mechanical engineering major, said the eclipse is an experience she will not forget, and that it has definitely made her even more interested in astronomy.

“This is something that scientifically blows your mind,” Adams said. “You’re literally watching the moon fully cover the sun.”

During a solar eclipse, the moon passes between the sun and Earth and blocks all or part of the sun for up to about three hours, from beginning to end, as viewed from a given location.

In Nashville, the eclipse’s totality, the period when the sun is completely blacked out by the moon, lasted about two minutes. When totality occurred, the stadium erupted with cheers, and people who didn’t know each other were hugging and laughing.

While he enjoyed seeing the eclipse, TSU student Alex Hill said the effect it had on people who witnessed it was even more moving.

“I believe that this gives people a chance to take a step back and look at the bigger picture,” said Hill, a junior majoring in business administration. “No matter our race or ethnicity, we all live under the same sun and moon, and should treat each other as such.”

 

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 bachelor’s degree programs, 25 master’s degree programs and seven doctoral degrees. 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 ready for total solar eclipse, scientist believes historic event will spark new interest in astronomy, research

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (TSU News Service) – A Tennessee State University scientist believes the total solar eclipse on Monday will spark new interest in astronomy and TSU’s nationally recognized research.

Dr. Geoffrey Burks is an astronomer and associate professor of physics at TSU. He said the Aug. 21 event is once-in-a-lifetime, but its impact will probably be long lasting, particularly in the minds of youngsters.

“It’s just so rare to be able to see something in your lifetime where the sun is covered up in the middle of the day,” Burks said. “They’ll remember this a long time.”

TSU will have eclipse viewing events to recognize the historic day. They are planned from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at Hale Stadium on TSU’s main campus, and at Avon Williams, the university’s downtown campus. The event at the stadium will include comments from TSU President Glenda Glover, NASA engineer Dr. Virginia Tickles, TSU researchers, as well as performances by TSU’s Aristocrat of Bands. There will also be free food.

“It’s going to be a fun day,” said TSU Dean of Students Frank Stevenson. “We want it to be a day that you will remember where you were on this day. It will also be an opportunity to showcase a little bit of Tennessee State University.”

During a solar eclipse, the moon passes between the sun and Earth and blocks all or part of the sun for up to about three hours, from beginning to end, as viewed from a given location.

Typically, there are two solar eclipses each year somewhere on the Earth, but most of the time the very narrow path of the total eclipse is a shadow over the ocean.

The one occurring on Aug. 21 is unique because it crosses the entire United States, and Nashville is the largest city within the entire eclipse’s path.

The last time a total solar eclipse could be seen from Nashville was July 29, 1478, according to NASA. After Aug. 21, the next one visible from Nashville will be on Aug. 16, 2566.

“This is a big thing,” said Willie Moore, a junior civil engineering major at TSU. “I want to make sure I am in the right place to see it.”

Burks said the Aug. 21 eclipse might also draw more attention to astronomy research. At TSU, its research and astronomy professors have received national recognition. The university owns and operates eight robotic telescopes at the Robotic Observatory Center in the mountains of southern Arizona.

In 1999, a team led by TSU astronomer Greg Henry announced the discovery of a shadow of a planet crossing a distant star. The discovery made national and international news, and was lauded by then President Bill Clinton.

“I want America to know about your enormous contributions to research,” Clinton said the following year at a higher education leadership banquet in Washington, D.C. “I want every American to know … Tennessee State astronomers made the world’s first direct detection of a planet orbiting another star.”

Last year, Dr. Henry was part of a team of astronomers who discovered an extrasolar planet scientists say has the most eccentric orbit ever seen.

Highlights of the planned TSU eclipse events on Monday include:

  • Safe viewing presentation (Hale Stadium, 10:20 a.m.)
  • NASA speaker-Dr. Virginia Tickles (Hale Stadium, 12:05 p.m.)
  • The Solar Eclipse: What’s Happening Now? (Hale Stadium, 12:30 p.m.)
  • TSU Aristocrat of Bands performs (Hale Stadium, 12:45 p.m.)
  • Words from TSU President Glenda Glover (Hale Stadium, 1:10 p.m.)
  • Full solar eclipse; viewing also on plaza of Avon Williams Campus (1:27 p.m.)

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 bachelor’s degree programs, 25 master’s degree programs and seven doctoral degrees. 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.