Category Archives: EVENTS

TSU Leader Launches “Walk with the President” to Promote Healthy Living on Campus

image001
NASHVILLE, Tenn.
(TSU News Service) – Tennessee State University President Glenda Glover is launching “Walk with the President,” starting Monday morning, March 2 in an effort to promote healthy habits and fitness on campus. The walk will take place each Monday around the track at Hale Stadium, beginning at 6 a.m.

She is calling on faculty, staff and students to join her in this initiative.

“This effort is geared toward us encouraging each other to live much healthier lives,” Dr. Glover said. “Earlier this year we started this effort in our campus cafeteria and dining services by offering more green and vegetable choices. ‘Walk with the President’ is just a continuation of that effort.”

The Director of the Wellness Center at TSU, Gerald Davis II, called “Walk with the President” a great idea that will give students, faculty and staff “another avenue” to engage in cardiovascular activities.

“This will help them to relieve stress and weight loss in maintaining good health,” he said.

Solving the issue of obesity and unhealthy dieting is a national challenge, and TSU, as an educational institution, has a major role is battling this epidemic, the president noted.

“The lack of regular forms of exercise is a major risk factor in developing illnesses and other forms of disease,” she said.

Studies support the President’s assertion. A recent National Institutes of Health study gives an overwhelming evidence that proves the notion that reductions in daily physical activity are primary causes of chronic diseases.

In Tennessee, the situation is even dire. The state now has the fourth highest adult obesity rate in the nation, according to The State of Obesity: Better Policies for a Healthier America, published in 2013. Tennessee’s adult obesity rate is 33.7 percent, up from 25.6 percent in 2004 and from 11.1 percent in 1990.

“We know ‘Walk with the President’ will not solve all of our problems, but it is a beginning and I am asking all of our faculty, staff, students and anyone else who is interested to join us in this worthy cause for healthy living,” Dr. Glover said.

 

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 42 undergraduate, 24 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 to Host Legislative Forum on Tennessee Academic Standards for Grades K-12 Feb. 26

Leg_Panel_flyer_UPDATE_2.20.15NASHVILLE, Tenn. (TSU News Service) – One of the biggest and controversial issues facing the 109th General Assembly in Tennessee this session is what role should the state have in mandating a common set of academic expectations for students to achieve at each grade level. This has significant implications on curriculum, budget and decision making.

To inform the public on what the future holds for education legislation in the state, Tennessee State University will hold a legislative panel and forum on “Viewpoints on Tennessee Academic Standards for Grades K-12,” Thursday, Feb. 26 at the Avon Williams Campus Atrium. The forum begins at 7:30 a.m. and is free and open to the public.

Education Commissioner, Dr. Candice McQueen, will be the featured speaker for the event, with State Senators Steven Dickerson, member of the Senate Education Committee, and Becky Duncan Massey, member of the Joint Subcommittee on Education, Health and General Welfare, serving on the panel provide to let the public to see, hear and digest information on the state’s standards.

Other panel members include State Representatives Brenda Gilmore, Harold Love Jr., member of the House Education Instruction Programs Committee, and Mark White, chair of the House Subcommittee on Education Administration and Planning.

According to Dr. Michael Harris, dean of the College of Public Service and Urban Affairs and moderator of the forum, the panel will provide a balanced representation of views to “allow for a meaningful discussion.”

“Education standards are probably one of the biggest issues taken on by legislators this year,” said Harris. “The panelists will discuss existing positions both in favor or against the standards, present current legislative initiatives that address them, and share evidence-based resources on the standards.”

The panel discussion on academic standards comes on the heels of Tennessee school superintendents recently urging state lawmakers to rethink making any changes this year to the state’s K-12 academic standards and instead give Gov. Bill Haslam time to complete his current review next year.

The Tennessee Organization of School Superintendents Tuesday presented a letter signed by 114 superintendents from the state’s 141 school districts at the State Capitol, asking that, “no legislative action be taken during the 2015 legislative session to change our academic standards.”

Many argue, that the success of the recently signed Tennessee Promise law that offers future graduates of any Tennessee high school the opportunity to receive two years of community or technical college tuition-free, hinges on how prepared students are to succeed. Recently, leaders of all 13 of Tennessee’s community colleges held a press conference at the state capitol to emphasize their support for continuing Tennessee’s commitment to higher K-12 academic standards that prepare students for college study.

“This is an issue that the public needs to be informed about, and kept abreast on what is facing our schools, our students and our legislators,” Harris added.

Along with TSU, the forum is hosted in partnership with the American Association of University Women of Tennessee, and AAUW Nashville. Organizations cosponsoring the event include the Nashville Area Chamber of Commerce, Women in Higher Education in Tennessee, the American Society for Public Administration, and Lipscomb University Institute for Conflict Management.

For more information, contact Dr. Ann-Marie Rizzo, professor of Public Administration, at 615.963.7250 or arizzo@tnstate.edu.

 

 

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 42 undergraduate, 24 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.

Oscar-nominated Actress Taraji P. Henson to headline Women of Legend and Merit Awards at Tennessee State University

Tennessee State University Honors Women During Annual Celebration on March 24th

  

Taraji P. Henson PhotoNASHVILLE, Tenn. (TSU News Service) – Tennessee State University’s Women of Legend and Merit Awards will honor women leaders on Tuesday, March 24, 7 p.m. at the Millennium Maxwell House Hotel in Nashville. Academy Award-nominated actress Taraji P. Henson will serve as the keynote speaker for the evening.

“Tennessee State University is proud to recognize the outstanding accomplishments of women in our community, and the Women of Legend and Merit Awards presents a perfect opportunity for us to highlight the achievements so many have made in advancing our community and nation,” said Dr. Glenda Glover, president of Tennessee State University. “These women have lived lives of inspiration, courage and sacrifice. It is our privilege to share their stories and achievements.”

Henson, who currently stars in Lee Daniel’s major hit musical drama Empire as Cookie Lyon, and is the recipient of the 2015 NAACP Image Award as Entertainer of the Year, will share her message of encouragement with attendees during the program. She has lit up the big screen in numerous films, including The Curious Case of Benjamin Button in 2008 in which she earned an Academy Award nomination for Best Supporting Actress. She starred in From the Rough (2014) portraying former TSU golf coach, Dr. Catana Starks, the first woman coach to win a NCAA Championship. Henson is a 2011 Emmy nominee for Best Actress in a movie or miniseries for Lifetime’s Taken From Me, and also starred as Detective Joss Carter in the highly rated J. J. Abrams CBS crime drama, Person of Interest.

“We are certainly looking forward to hearing from the dynamic Taraji P. Henson, and paying tribute to some very dynamic and inspiring women,” said Peggy Earnest, TSU dean of students and chairman for the event. “Many of them have made inroads which have opened doors of opportunity for younger women to meet today’s challenges and fulfill their own promise of a brighter future. We are excited about saluting this new class of honorees.”

The Women of Legend and Merit Awards is an annual celebration saluting dynamic women leaders in business and the community in a variety of fields. The first event was held in 2007 and is designed to bring awareness and raise funds in support of the TSU Women’s Center, and seeks to expose the university’s female student population to positive role models, networking opportunities and resources to assist in their academic, personal and professional growth as women.

This year’s honorees include:

  • Barbara Landers Bowles (Leadership), vice chairman, Investor Resources Group;
  • Sharon Kay (Media), general manager, WFSK-FM 88.1, Fisk University;
  • Mercedes C. Maynor-Faulcon (Legal), assistant U.S. attorney, Civil Division, United States Department of Justice;
  • Sherri Neal (Business), vice president, Cultural Development and Inclusion, HCA;
  • Phyllis Qualls-Brooks (Government), executive director, Tennessee Economic Council on Women;
  • Renato Soto (Community Service), co-founder and executive director, Conexion Americas;
  • Wendy Thompson (Education), vice chancellor, Office of Effectiveness and Strategic Initiatives, Tennessee Board of Regents; and,
  • Renita J. Weems (Religion), vice president, American Baptist College.

Tickets to the event are $100 per person and may be purchased online at http://www.tnstate.edu/womenscenter/legend.aspx or by calling (615) 963-5481.

 

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 42 undergraduate, 24 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 Turns Capitol Blue as it Takes Over the Hill

University to showcase academic and athletic programs to lawmakers


TSU Day at the Capitol 1NASHVILLE, Tenn. (TSU News Service) – Tennessee lawmakers will see the impact Tennessee State University is making firsthand with programs like it’s SITES-M project that trains the state’s math teachers to be more efficient and productive, and ground-breaking research in agriculture and health sciences when the University goes to Capitol Hill, Tuesday, Feb. 10 from 8 a.m. until 1 p.m.

Along with providing lawmakers the opportunity to learn about the high-caliber programs at the University, legislators will have the opportunity to interact with students, faculty, staff and student-athletes, as TSU showcases its impressive academic, athletic and research programs during TSU Day at the Capitol. Programs from the University’s various colleges will be on display throughout the Legislative Plaza.

Displays will be available for viewing beginning at 8 a.m. with the official kick-off ceremony taking place at 10 a.m. in the Mezzanine. The event will provide an excellent platform for the state’s elected officials to see and hear firsthand about the issues facing higher education today, and the many student and research success stories from TSU.

TSU Day at the Capitol runs until 1 p.m. and events include:

8 a.m.                                     Displays Open in Legislative Plaza

10 a.m.                                TSU Day at the Capitol Kick-off Ceremony
(Mezzanine)

9 a.m. – noon                  TSU Day at the Capitol Legislative visits

1 p.m.                                  Displays close

Media is invited to attend TSU Day at the Capitol. For more information, call 615.963.5331.

 

 

 

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 42 undergraduate, 24 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.

Sexual Assault, Relationship Violence Focus of Two-Day Summit at Tennessee State University

Unknown
Tennessee State University President Glenda Glover addresses participants at a two-day summit on sexual assault on college campus, during opening ceremonies in Poag Auditorium on the main campus. (Photo by Emmanuel Freeman, TSU Media Relations)


NASHVILLE
(TSU News Service) – Tennessee State University President Glenda Glover Tuesday welcomed more than 400 representatives from 76 universities, colleges and organizations across the state to a two-day summit on campus sexual assault.

The summit, featuring national experts on sexual assault prevention and complying with changing federal laws, includes customized tracks for campus police, student support services providers, and Title IX investigators.

The Tennessee Board of Regents, the Tennessee Independent Colleges and Universities Association, and the University of Tennessee System, in partnership with the Tennessee Coalition to End Domestic and Sexual Violence, are sponsoring the summit.

“We are especially delighted and honored that you selected Tennessee State University for this all important summit,” President Glover said, as she presented TBR Chancellor John Morgan. “Sexual assault is a very serious issue, and every member of our campus community has a responsibility to not only know how to prevent it, but also how to respond to it.”

Dr. Glover thanked the summit planners and facilitators from across the state, including the TSU offices of Equal Opportunity and Affirmative Action, and Student Affairs for their contributions.

“Your contribution to this gathering is well noted. Your efforts demonstrate that we must be ready to take every step necessary to support our students when they need us,” the President added.

According to the TBR, the summit also solidifies a partnership between the state’s higher education community and Tennessee’s leading private, non-profit sexual assault coalition.

“Through the development and implementation of effective prevention and awareness programs and campaigns, the statewide partnership will enhance the efforts of Tennessee’s higher education institutions to focus on student safety at all levels,” a TBR release stated.

The summit covers topics ranging from “Domestic and Dating Violence 101” to bystander intervention and the psychological and biological effects of sexual assaults.

Keynote speakers include: Katie Koestner, executive director of the Take Back the Night Foundation and Campus Outreach Services and the first survivor of acquaintance rape to speak out nationally. Others include S. Daniel Carter, director of the 32 National Campus Safety Initiative formed by the families of the victims and survivors of the Virginia Tech tragedy; Connie Kirkland, director of sexual assault services at Northern Virginia Community College and contributing author of the 2014 NCAA guide “Addressing Sexual Assault and Interpersonal Violence,” Jim Hopper, consultant and instructor of psychology at Harvard Medical School specializing in the psychological and biological effects of sexual assault and serving on the congressionally-mandated Peace Corps Sexual Assault Advisory Council, and Kayce Matthews, program specialist with the Tennessee Coalition to End Domestic and Sexual Violence.

The summit concludes on Wednesday.

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 42 undergraduate, 24 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 Announces Black History Month Events

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (TSU News Service) – Tennessee State University announced today a schedule of events for Black History Month beginning in February. Students, staff, faculty, alumni and members of the public are invited to attend all events.

20150126schedule1d[1]-1
TSU 2015 Black History Month Schedule of Events
The University will hold a series of compelling activities to celebrate cultural diversity at TSU and recognize the contributions of African-Americans during the month of February as the nation observes Black History Month. This American history is one all can celebrate as we recognize the achievements and significant roles African-Americans, in collaboration with so many others, have played in shaping the country.

Upcoming program and events include lectures, history and culture conference, panel discussions, and musical and theatrical performances. The University will also hold its annual Day on the Capital Feb. 10, and African-American History and Culture conference Feb. 13. Events are free, unless noted, and open to the public.

For more information, call the Office of Media Relations at 615.963.5331 or communications@tnstate.edu.

 

 

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 42 undergraduate, 24 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 Alum and NASA Engineer Receives Director’s Commendation Award for Outstanding Contribution

NASA Johnson Space Center Director, Dr. Ellen Ochoa, right; and Deputy Director Kirk Shireman, left, congratulate Ron Cobbs after presenting him with the NASA-JSC Director’s Commendation Award, during a ceremony recently in the Teague Auditorium at the center.
NASA Johnson Space Center Director, Dr. Ellen Ochoa, right; and Deputy Director Kirk Shireman, left, congratulate Ron Cobbs after presenting him with the NASA-JSC Director’s Commendation Award, during a ceremony recently in the Teague Auditorium at the center. (Courtesy photo)


NASHVILLE, Tenn.
(TSU News Service) – A Tennessee State University alumnus and NASA engineer has been recognized for outstanding contribution to the agency.

Ron Cobbs, a 1989 TSU graduate with a B.S. degree in Electrical Engineering and avionics chief engineer assigned to the International Space Station operations, recently received the NASA Johnson Space Center Director’s Commendation Award.

The award, the highest honor given by the NASA-JSC administrator, recognizes the center’s civil servants with “significant” contribution toward the mission and operations of the JSC.

Last year, Cobbs’ input was helpful in identifying the cause of a space suit malfunction during a spacewalk in July. Although Cobbs was not part of the official Extravehicular Mobility Unit (space suit) investigating team, he was asked to “look into” the situation because the problem “appeared to be electrical.”

Ron Cobbs, International Space Station Avionics Chief Engineer and TSU graduate, helped NASA engineers identify the cause of a serial interface issue with a spacesuit that malfunctioned during a spacewalk on July 16. (courtesy photo)
Ron Cobbs, International Space Station Avionics Chief Engineer and TSU graduate, helped NASA engineers identify the cause of a serial interface issue with a spacesuit that malfunctioned during a spacewalk on July 16, 2013. (courtesy photo)

“I discovered that the problem was a systems problem relative to operational use of the serial port on the laptop side of the suit,” said Cobbs, after investigating the problem. As a result of his findings and recommendation, the procedures for the astronauts were rewritten and retested, subsequently leading to identifying the problem.

Saying that he is “deeply honored” to receive the Administrator’s Award from NASA-JSC, Cobbs, who has been with NASA for nearly 30 years, credits his parents and his TSU preparation for his career success.

“My parents always taught me to work hard and always do the right thing,” said Cobbs, who also holds a master’s degree in Space Engineering from Stevens Institute of Technology. “They taught me to believe in myself, have faith and shoot for the moon.”

Shooting for the moon is what Cobbs has been doing since. As avionics chief engineer, his role is to ensure that engineers in the NASA Directorate adhere to the “right processes.” He also supports project managers during the design, development, test and evaluation of projects that require electronics and/or software for operational use.

“I also support Failure Investigation Teams whenever their failures or anomalies on the Space Station need to be resolved. I also sit on several Space Station program boards to provide concurrence representing engineering on all proposed forward plans and action that will be implemented,” Cobbs noted.

“Ronald Cobbs is a true example of an electrical engineering graduate with passion for life-long learning and professional growth,” Dr. Satinderpaul Singh Devgan, professor and head of the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering, said of his former student, when information came out about Cobbs’ spacesuit malfunction intervention.

Cobbs joined NASA at the Johnson Space Center immediately after graduating TSU. He has moved through the ranks from design engineer, systems engineer to now ISS avionics chief engineer.

“I think Ron Cobbs’ achievement at NASA is a great story,” added Dr. S. Keith Hargrove, dean of the College of Engineering.

 

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 42 undergraduate, 24 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’s Roy Bullock inducted into George Washington Carver Public Service Hall of Fame

Dr. Roy Bullock
Dr. Roy Bullock

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (TSU News Service) – A professor from Tennessee State University has been recognized for his public service and contributions to the rural farming community. Dr. Roy Bullock, professor of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences, received the accolades when he was inducted into the George Washington Carver Public Service Hall of Fame.

The public service award, presented to Bullock December 7, is given to those individuals whose work mirrors the philosophy of world-recognized scholar George Washington Carver – “the greatest good for the greatest number of people.”

The award recognizes teaching and research accomplishments that improve the quality of life for clientele served by land-grant institutions such as Tennessee State University. The award ceremony is part of the annual Professional Agricultural Workers Conference in Tuskegee, Alabama.

Bullock is the first recipient of the prestigious award from Tennessee State University and the first in the state. The award was first presented in 1984.

“This is a great honor to receive this distinction,” said Bullock, who also serves as the Extension state program leader for Agriculture and Natural Resources. “Very few people have received this award.”

Dr. Latif Lighari, associate dean for Extension in the College of Agriculture, Human and Natural Sciences, expressed pride in and gratitude for Bullock’s many years of service to the college and the farming community.

“This is a great honor for the TSU Cooperative Extension Program to have one of our senior faculty recognized with this prestigious distinction,” Lighari said. “This recognition is given only to people with a remarkable record of success in extension, outreach and university engagement.”

As for the future, Bullock says that he is focused on spending the rest of his career focusing on rebuilding the farming population, which is vital to the nation’s future.

“We need to replenish the aging farmer with the young vibrant farmer through whatever means necessary,” he explained. “If farming fails, everything fails.”

Bullock, a graduate of Class VIII of the National Extension Leadership Development (NELD) Program, has written more than 30 Extension publications. In his current position, he provides leadership to county agents who focus on small farmers in all 95 Tennessee counties. He is a 2009 recipient of the Association of Public and Land-Grant Universities’ Excellence in Extension Award, the Presidential Distinguished Service Award (2001), the University of Tennessee Program of Distinction Award for Small Farms (2004), the Blue and White Gala Award for Outstanding Program in Small Farms (2006), and the Award of Excellence for Exceptional Programming for Southern Regional Extension Forestry (2006).

 

 

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 42 undergraduate, 24 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.

To Succeed, Learn to Keep Pace with Fast-Changing World, TSU Commencement Speaker Tells More than 500 Graduates

IMG_5696
President Glenda Glover presents a plaque of appreciation to Shannon A. Brown, Senior Vice President and Chief Human Resource and Diversity Officer at FedEx Express, who served as the keynote speaker for the fall commencement at TSU.


NASHVILLE, Tenn.
(TSU News Service) – Saying that today’s fast-changing world requires people who can adapt, Tennessee State University fall commencement speaker told nearly 500 graduates Saturday that to be successful they must be ready to “run when the sun comes up,” to keep pace.

“Today’s reality is that the world is changing faster,” said Shannon Brown, senior vice president and chief human resource and diversity officer at FedEx Express. “Economies and their enterprises are moving at a very fast pace and people who are slow to adapt will be left behind.”

Brown, recognized by Black Enterprise magazine as one of the “100 Most Powerful Executives in Corporate America,” paralleled his remarks to the “gazelle” and the “lion” in Christopher McDougal’s book, “Ready to Run,” where the gazelle must outrun the fastest lion or be killed, or the lion must run faster than the slowest gazelle or it will starve.

“It doesn’t matter whether you are the lion or the gazelle, when the sun comes up, you better be running,” said the FedEx executive, who, in 30 years, worked his way from a package handler to become one of the top executives at the world’s largest express transport company.

He said in a fast-track world with constant technological advances and changes that have revolutionized all aspects of industry and human thinking, people who are slow to catch on and prepare for the future will be left behind.

He applauded the graduates for their determination to complete their university journey, urging them to use that same determination to press their way forward.

“As you enter this fast changing world, surround yourselves with good mentors; they can help you make the transition from one environment to the other; don’t be afraid to step out of your comfort zone; and commit to being lifelong learners,” Brown told the graduates.

The Memphis, Tennessee, native who said his job as the highest ranking human resource and diversity officer at FedEx is to keep employees engaged and satisfied, named charisma, individual consideration, intellectual stimulation, courage, dependability, flexibility, judgment and respect for others as “time-tested” leadership principles that will keep them competitive in their chosen fields.

“It is about believing that every individual brings value to the table; and do not forget to give back to the community,” Brown added.

Leaitrice Medina
President Glenda Glover congratulates Leatrice Medina for receiving the Academic Excellence Award. The award is given to a graduating senior with the highest GPA of 4.0 among her classmates. Medina received her degree in Psychology.

TSU President Glenda Glover, herself a Memphis native, thanked Brown for what she called, “a thought-provoking” speech, and congratulated the graduates for their accomplishment.

“You have endured and prepared yourself to reach this goal which may have seemed unattainable, but you stuck with it,” Dr. Glover said. “You must always remember that you did not accomplish this goal all by yourselves. There were parents, relatives, friends and mentors who helped you along the way. Remember to thank them.”

More than 500 graduates received degrees in various disciplines at the ceremony in the Gentry Center Complex. Among officials who attended the program was Dr. Wendy Thompson, vice chancellor for Organizational Effectiveness and Strategic Initiatives, at the Tennessee Board of Regents.