Category Archives: NEWS

Honors Day Convocation Recognizes TSU’s Best and Brightest Students

HonorsNASHVILLE, Tenn. (TSU News Room) – Tennessee State University recognized its best and brightest students when the university held its annual Honors Day Convocation on March 22.

The convocation in Kean Hall  recognized distinguished undergraduates from all disciplines, top graduating seniors, Honors College participants, outstanding members of the various honor societies, and students on the President’s and Dean’s Lists.

More than 2,350 students with grade point averages of 3.0 or higher were honored.

Up to 120 students on the President’s List received special recognition. These students have maintained 4.0 GPAs throughout their matriculation. They include four seniors, two juniors, 16 sophomores, and 98 freshmen.

This year marks the inaugural convocation of the TSU Honors College, previously called the Honors Program. The 51-year-old program was elevated to a college in 2015 on the recommendation of TSU and the approval of the Tennessee Board of Regents, and the Tennessee Higher Education Commission.

Dr. Coreen Jackson, director of the Honors College, said “the elevation raised the bar” for academic excellence, mentorship, and professional development of exceptional students.

“When a university elevates its honors program to a college, it positions itself to attract, recruit and retain academically brilliant students,” Jackson said. “The elevation offers greater visibility to the university, creates a high level interdisciplinary curriculum that prepares the next generation of leaders for academic and vocational success, scholarship, achievement and service.”

Ashley Parmer, a senior communications major, and Jaquantey Bowens, a sophomore biology major, were among the student honorees with 4.0 GPAs. They said their academic success is due largely to the support and nurturing they receive as members of the Honors College.

“The Honors Program has been a great tool and added bonus of my college matriculation,” said Parmer, editor of The Meter, the student newspaper. She has been with the program since her freshman year.

“Everyone in the college wants you to excel,” Parmer said. “If you are lost, they will help you find your way. If you need advice, they will be there to give it to you.”

Added Bowens: “Not only has the Honors Program made me a better student, but it has also brought forth lifelong friendships. The atmosphere of the program is like a second home – it is always there to support you.”

Jackson thanked TSU President Glenda Glover for her support, which she said made the Honors College possible. A TSU graduate, Glover was a member of the Honors Program while a student at TSU.

“This high honor could not have happened without the full support of President Glover,” Jackson said. “She has made the Honors College a top priority in her presidency. Her commitment has been unwavering and resolute.”

Beverly Bond, an actress and president and CEO of Black Girls Rock!, was the special guest lecturer at the convocation.

 

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, 22 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.

Nashville Mayor Megan Barry says TSU’s Women’s Center plays a ‘critical role’ in many lives

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (TSU News Service) – Nashville Mayor Megan Barry says Tennessee State University’s Women’s Center plays a “critical role” in the lives of the university’s students, as well as its employees.

Barry, the city’s first female mayor, is one of five women who will be honored on March 22 at TSU’s Ninth Women of Legend and Merit Awards dinner, which benefits the Women’s Center.

“The Women’s Center serves a critical role by empowering women through mentorship and education programs that create stronger bonds and professional development opportunities for students and faculty alike,” Barry said. “I’m honored to have the chance to show my support for this important program at the Women of Legend and Merit Awards dinner later this month.”

Besides Mayor Barry, other honorees include businesswoman Jacky Akbari; Nashville Circuit Court Judge Angela Cox; Dr. Sandra Holt, former director of TSU’s Women’s Center and Honors Program; and Latrisha Jemison, senior vice president and regional community affairs manager at Regions Bank.

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Women’s Center coordinator Seanne Wilson talks with students. (By John Cross, TSU Media Relations)

For nearly 10 years, the center, located on the second floor of TSU’s Floyd-Payne Campus Center, has worked to mentor and empower young women attending TSU from across the country. It’s among a handful of historically black colleges and universities with similar centers.

“Our Women’s Center does a tremendous job in helping young women discover their voice and their purpose on campus, and ultimately in their community and workplace,” said TSU President Glenda Glover. “For almost a decade, the center has nurtured and mentored students in an environment they categorized as a home away from home setting that allows them to flourish on our campus. It’s a special place.”

TSU student Alicia Jones agreed the atmosphere of the center has a “home feel” that allows students to be comfortable.

“I can come in, do some homework, and just talk about various things,” said Jones, a 20-year-old mass communications major from Memphis.

The center also has an open door for administrators, faculty and staff who may need some type of assistance. For instance, the center recently helped a homeless staffer find housing and offered her other assistance.

Coordinator Seanne Wilson said the center also helps students with issues that range from financial needs to domestic abuse. It also has programs like “Wisdom Speaks,” in which alumni return to the campus to engage students in empowering discussions, as well as a clothing boutique.

“Several of our students are first generation college students and have a very limited wardrobe, with many of the pieces being inappropriate for a college setting,” Wilson said. “Some young ladies, if they’re interviewing or doing internships, will come to the center looking for something to wear.”

While most of its visitors are women, young men drop by from time to time to talk or participate in group discussions.

Student Alan Bond said he likes talking about relationships with his female counterparts.

“It gives people a space to be able to talk,” said the 21-year-old computer science major. “It’s good to just hear the other side. An example of that would be relationships; my perspective on relationships, versus a woman’s perspective.”

In addition to honoring the five women, Wilson said a $500 “book award” will be given to a TSU student at the awards dinner on March 22. And starting in the spring, two students will receive $500 each per semester in financial aid to assist with expenses.

Beverly Bond, CEO and founder of Black Girls Rock, a global women’s empowerment movement and nonprofit mentoring organization, will be the keynote speaker at the dinner.

“The TSU family and community are pleased to have Ms. Bond as our guest speaker for this signature event,” President Glover said. “Her amazing achievements truly embody the University’s motto of think, work, serve, and we look forward to hearing her incredible journey.”

For more information about the Women’s Center or the March 22 dinner visit: www.tnstate.edu/womenscenter/legend.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, 22 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.

Event educates small businesses about contract opportunities with the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (TSU News Service) – The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services recently hosted a small business outreach event at Tennessee State University.

The one-day event on March 16 at TSU’s Avon Williams Campus allowed small business owners to learn strategies for identifying and pursuing contract opportunities with HHS, and meet with federal government representatives.

“We want to provide information to small businesses that can help them advance what they want to do, as well as advance the mission of HHS,” said Teresa Lewis, director of HHS’ Office of Small and Disadvantaged Business Utilization.

Lewis said the agency uses small businesses to assist in strengthening the health care of all Americans by advancing scientific knowledge, innovation, health care safety and accountability.

TSU was selected because the university is “doing some great things in the area of research that mirrors the work that we’re doing at the Department of Health and Human Services,” Lewis said.

Dr. Lesia Crumpton-Young, TSU’s chief research officer, said she’s glad the university had the opportunity to partner with the federal agency and looks forward to future collaboration.

“TSU, because of our interest in helping the community, economic development and because of our rich history in small business development, we agreed to be the partner in providing the venue for this program and in providing access to information on small businesses that’s beneficial,” she said.

Business owner Lincoln Tyson traveled from Washington, D.C. to attend the event because he wants to open a business in Nashville.

“Being a small business, I’m just trying to branch out and do some things in different parts of the country,” said Tyson, whose company does facilities-based work. “This is an opportunity to network, and gain information that will help me open an office in Nashville.

For more information about OSDBU, visit: www.hhs.gov/grants/small-business-programs.

 

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, 22 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 continues implementation of security plan with new police chief and other safety measures

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (TSU News Service) – Tennessee State University is continuing to implement its 10-Point Safety Enhancement Plan with the hiring of a new police chief and additional safety measures.

University officials announced March 14 that Gregory Robinson has returned to his alma mater to take the top position. Robinson, who has over 30 years of experience in law enforcement, is coming from Vanderbilt University where he was in charge of the entire police operation on the main campus that included nearly 100 police and security officers.

“I’m extremely honored to have been offered and accepted the position of Assistant Vice President and Chief of Police of this prestigious institution,” Robinson said. “l look forward to carrying out the plan set forth by President Glover that will continue to enhance campus safety, and serve the TSU community.“

TSU President Glenda Glover said the University is very pleased with the experience and qualifications that Chief Robinson brings to the University’s public safety program.

“It was important to have an individual with a vast background in law enforcement, and with specific knowledge of higher education public safety policies and procedures,” Glover said. “Our new chief has an extensive and impressive employment history that will further enhance the work we have already begun as we continue to make the TSU Police Department even better as it serves the campus family.”

President Glover commended Interim Police Chief Anthony Carter for his leadership during his time as head of TSUPD.

“I truly appreciate Carter for his hard work and commitment to the University,” she said.

In addition to hiring a new chief, the campus is now enclosed by more fencing and has new traffic control gates that were installed over the last month. The upgrades are part of the University’s safety enhancement plan instituted last October.

The current fencing initiative is nearly 75 percent complete along the west side of the campus and is scheduled for completion this semester. The first phase was completed in January 2015 and included the campus area facing 33rd Avenue, enclosing several residence halls. The fencing initiative is an effort to curb outside pedestrian traffic.

Another component of the plan being implemented addresses traffic control. New traffic gates with call boxes have been installed at several sites. Additional access control devices are being installed as well. Individuals must swipe an active ID badge for access.

These new measures help to fulfill components of TSU’s 10-Point Safety Enhancement Plan that require individuals to have a current ID to move about on campus, whether on foot, or by vehicle. Last semester, TSU opened a police satellite office in the Student Center and established a Student Safety Patrol.

Visit www.tnstate.edu/safety for a comprehensive list of the safety plan.

 

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, 22 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 app to provide ‘convenient’ way for students to register for classes

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (TSU News Service) – Class registration will soon be a little more convenient for TSU students.

By the fall, students will be able to use a new mobile app to register, drop and add classes. The app, released in January, is accessible now for Android through the Google store and Apple iOS through iTunes.

TSU Chief Information Officer Tim Warren said software that allows students to register will soon be added to the app.

“They do everything on apps nowadays, so it just makes sense,” Warren said. “I think students are really going to like it. It’s very, very convenient.”

The app, developed by leading software company Ellucian and modified by TSU’s Office of Technology Services, currently allows students to check courses, schedules and grades; access myTSU and eLearn; and even unlock accounts and reset passwords.

Other features include interactive maps of the campus and access to Nashville’s bus schedules. There is also a section for all things athletics, and of course, TSU’s social media sites.

While a number of higher education institutions across the country are using similar apps, TSU is among only a handful of state schools that have such a device.

So far, about 800 TSU students have downloaded the app, Warren said.

TSU student David Johnson said he plans to download it and is looking forward to using it to register for classes.

“It’s going to make it a lot easier,” said Johnson, a junior who is majoring in Health Sciences. “It’s pretty convenient.”

Lexes Harper, a 21-year-old Chemistry major, currently uses a browser on her iPhone to access TSU’s website. But she agrees the app is more convenient, and plans to download it – particularly for registration.

“We can go straight to the app,” Harper said. “It saves time.”

 

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, 22 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.

Senate Education Committee delays vote on legislation that would restructure higher education governance

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (TSU News Service) – TSU students and administrators gathered at the state Capitol and saw the Senate Education Committee delay voting on legislation that would restructure higher education governance.

The students, along with TSU President Glenda Glover, packed the hearing at the Legislative Plaza on March 2 to hear lawmakers discuss the Focus on College and University Success Act. After some lengthy debate, a vote on the legislation was delayed until next week after committee chairwoman Dolores Gresham attempted to amend the proposal to provide legislative oversight.

Committee members said they wanted more time to review the proposed amendment. TSU distributed a list of questions regarding the Act that highlighted the negative impact it would have on the institution.

The legislation, which is being pushed by Gov. Bill Haslam, had been rapidly moving through the legislative process before the delay. It’s scheduled to be taken up in the same Senate committee on March 9.

TSU student Jordan Spencer attended the Senate hearing and said she was glad to see the bill delayed.

“I’m really concerned as to the benefit it will give to our school,” said Spencer, a 20-year-old biology major. “We need specifics, and there are no projected specifics.”

Aarian Forman, a junior at TSU majoring in business administration, said he believes the strong attendance by students “made a statement to legislators.”

“We will continue  to stand strong as a student body to make sure this bill is not passed, or at least in its present form,” Forman said.

The day before the Senate committee meeting, TSU students and administrators also attended the House Government Operations Committee where the FOCUS Act was also debated. Rep. Jeremy Faison, the chair of the House committee, welcomed the crowd of students and commended them for seeking more information on the legislation.

“Y’all have been extremely respectful, and I’m proud to have y’all in my committee,” said Faison, whose committee advanced the bill with a positive recommendation. He explained to students that his panel could only review the bill; not make changes or kill it.

“What I want you to know, is that regardless of the outcome of the bill, you walk out with your heads high and know that you live to fight another day,” Faison said.

Even though the FOCUS Act is likely to pass the Legislature, TSU students, faculty, and administrators contend it could be hurtful to the State’s only public HBCU.

TSU President Glenda Glover has expressed numerous concerns about the legislation. They include the possibility of the University of Tennessee, Knoxville growing even stronger because it will be left intact while the TBR is dismantled; unnecessary duplication of programs; and probably most important, maintaining an equitable funding process.

“What will the funding formula look like?” Glover said to reporters after the House committee meeting. “The legislation only broadly describes it, but no formula is in place at this point. The (Tennessee) Board of Regents ensures balance. They do all they can to make the playing field fair. “

Currently, the Board of Regents oversees 46 institutions: six public four-year state universities (including TSU), 13 community colleges and 27 technical colleges.

Under the FOCUS Act, TBR would oversee the state’s community and technical colleges only, and focus on promoting graduation rates at those institutions. Haslam has said the legislation is the next step in his “Drive to 55” initiative, which seeks to increase the percentage of Tennesseans with a postsecondary credential to 55 by 2025.

“With 46 institutions, it is difficult for TBR to meet all of the diverse challenges of the system,” according to the governor’s website about the legislation. “Community colleges arguably need greater focus at a system level in the Drive to 55, while TBR’s four-year state universities could benefit from greater autonomy.”

Despite her concerns, Glover said she’s still willing to work with the governor’s office to make the proposal less hurtful to TSU.

“We’ve been in contact with the governor’s office, and we’ve expressed concerns,” she said. “And to their credit, they’ve listened to quite a few of them. I have to be optimistic that we’ll continue to work with the governor’s office to work out the remaining differences.”

The FOCUS bill will have to pass finance committees in the House and Senate before reaching a full vote on the floors of both chambers.

According to the Tennessee General Assembly’s website, the legislation is scheduled to be heard in the House Finance, Ways and Means Subcommittee on March 9 at 10:30 a.m. It’s scheduled for 2:30 p.m. in the Senate Education Committee on the same day.

 

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, 22 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 delves into governor’s FOCUS Act with students, faculty, administrators and alumni

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (TSU News Service) – Tennessee State University President Glenda Glover and State Rep. Harold Love, Jr. held a forum at TSU to discuss a legislative proposal that would restructure higher education governance.

Protest-4
TSU student Kyara Murry waits in line with other students to discuss the FOCUS Act, a legislative proposal that would restructure higher education governance. (By John Cross, TSU Media Service)

Students, faculty, administrators, and alumni packed the Floyd-Payne Student Center auditorium on the university’s campus on Feb. 23 to learn more about the Focus on College and University Success Act and express their concerns about the proposal being pushed by Gov. Bill Haslam and that’s advancing in the legislative process.

Love, who represents the university in House District 58 and is also an alumnus of TSU, said he wanted to address concerns about the impact the legislation could have specifically on Tennessee State University.

“I felt it was important to make myself available to answer questions,” Love said before the event. “Tennessee State University has great leadership, students, faculty and alumni and it is my intention to convey their concerns to my colleagues in the Legislature and the Governor’s office.”

Currently, the Tennessee Board of Regents oversees 46 institutions: six public four-year state universities (including TSU), 13 community colleges and 27 technical colleges.

Under the FOCUS Act, TBR would oversee the state’s community and technical colleges only, and focus on promoting graduation rates at those institutions. Haslam has said the legislation is the next step in his “Drive to 55” initiative, which seeks to increase the percentage of Tennesseans with a postsecondary credential to 55 by 2025.

“With 46 institutions, it is difficult for TBR to meet all of the diverse challenges of the system,” according to the governor’s website about the legislation. “Community colleges arguably need greater focus at a system level in the Drive to 55, while TBR’s four-year state universities could benefit from greater autonomy.”

Glover said she has concerns about the legislation, but noted that of the nine amendments the university has proposed to the governor, four have been accepted.

She said one of her main concerns is that the legislation maintains an equitable funding process for all of the four-year public institutions, especially TSU.

“We have a mission that is far different from the other five institutions,” Glover said. “The proposed legislation can’t be viewed as one size fits all. This difference must be recognized. I have communicated these and other concerns to the governor’s office and they are working with us. I remain hopeful that the final legislation will be fair and equitable for our students, faculty, and staff, but most important, our university. We’re going to get through this together.”

Glover said she would be persistent in talking to lawmakers about what’s in the best interest of the university.

“Our university is in the planning stages of implementing FOCUS.  We will host several meetings in an effort to keep the TSU family updated on any amendments to the bill as well as where we are in the implementation phase.”

Protest-3
Rep. Harold Love, Jr. speaks about FOCUS Act and takes questions from the audience. (By John Cross, TSU Media Service)

Another concern is the bill’s makeup of local boards that will oversee the state’s six four-year institutions. Some attending the forum questioned whether the eight members appointed by the governor for the 10-member panels should be handling certain higher education issues, such as schools’ leadership, tuition, faculty tenure, and curricula.

“This bill appears to weaken the institutional leadership of the university and potentially allow a university board to manage the day-to-day operations whereby their credentials and vision may conflict with that of the president of the university, “ said Dr. Samuel Hargrove, dean of TSU’s College of Engineering. “However, if this is the intent of the bill, I am confident TSU will respond strategically to continue its mission and purpose.”

Faculty Senate Chair Michael Catanzaro said he’s received phone calls and emails from the Faculty Senate regarding concerns about the bill and its potentially negative impact on the university.

“Each college and school within Tennessee State University has specific curricula and requirements for diplomas and degrees as determined by accrediting agencies,” Catanzaro said. “The FOCUS bill enables a Board of Trustees that may comprise people with little or no knowledge of accreditation requirements to have the power to develop curricula that may adversely affect the quality of education as well as violate the ‘academic freedom’ of professors.”

Students also voiced their concerns about the proposal, with questions ranging from a name change, available funding for campus improvements, to student involvement on the newly formed university board.

SGA President RaCia Poston said she had spoken with her counterparts regarding student participation with the board on student-related programs, fees, and activities.

“I’ve talked with student leaders from the other TBR four-year institutions and shared my concerns about the student representative being a non-voting member of the board,” Poston said.

“As a legislative intern, I’m lobbying lawmakers during my time at the Capitol on why the student vote should count.”

Love urged everyone to email the governor and lawmakers their concerns, as well as attend legislative committee meetings where the bill is being debated. If the measure passes, it is expected to be fully implemented late next year.

Tennessee State University is the only four-year public institution in Nashville and the only public four-year HBCU in the State of Tennessee. TSU offers 45 bachelor’s degree programs and 24 master’s degree programs and awards doctoral degrees in biological sciences, computer information systems, engineering, psychology, public administration, curriculum and instruction, educational administration and supervision, and physical therapy. In entirety, Tennessee State University comprises eight colleges and schools.

 

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, 22 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.

Frances Williams, Distinguished Professor and Administrator, Joins TSU As Associate Dean in College of Engineering

FWilliams-3
Dr. Frances Williams

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (TSU News Service) – Dr. Frances Williams is the new associate dean for Graduate Studies and Research in the College of Engineering and Professor of Electrical and Computer Engineering at Tennessee State University.

In her new role, Williams will manage the graduate programs, provide oversight and coordinate research grants and contracts, as well as identify and initiate new research opportunities and collaborative partnerships for the college.

Before coming to TSU Williams was a faculty member and director of the Center for Materials Research at Norfolk State University. She also was the director of Norfolk State’s Micro- and Nano-technology Center Cleanroom, a premiere research facility for fabricating micro- and nano-scale devices.

Her research focus is in the areas of advanced materials and devices, biosensors, and nano- and micro-electromechanical systems processing and devices. She has received grants totaling $14 million as a principal investigator or co-principal investigator. In 2010 she received a U.S. patent for developing a micromachined sensor for monitoring electrochemical deposition.

Williams has received various awards including the 2013 State Council of Higher Education for Virginia Outstanding Faculty Award, the highest faculty award given out by the state. In 2012, she was named an “Emerging Scholar” by Diverse Issues in Higher Education magazine. She also received Norfolk State’s top distinguished faculty award, the University Award of Excellence in 2010.

Williams is a member of several professional societies. She volunteers in various community programs that promote STEM (science, technology, engineering, and math) education for students from elementary to college age.

Williams holds B.S. and M.S. degrees in electrical engineering from North Carolina Agricultural & Technical State University, and a Ph.D. in electrical and computer engineering from the Georgia Institute of Technology.

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, 22 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.

National Science Foundation representatives educate local faculty, researchers about funding opportunities

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (TSU News Service) – Representatives from the National Science Foundation were in Nashville to tell faculty and researchers at local higher education institutions about research funding opportunities.

NSF-6
National Science Foundation representative Dr. Laura Namy talks to faculty and researchers about research funding opportunities. (Photo by John Cross, TSU Media Relations)

Tennessee State University and Meharry Medical College hosted the event that was held Feb. 19 on Meharry’s campus. Participating colleges and universities included American Baptist College, Belmont University, Fisk University, Lipscomb University, Trevecca Nazarene University, and Vanderbilt University.

Dr. Lesia Crumpton-Young, who spearheaded the event and is TSU’s chief research officer, said the main purpose of collaborating with Meharry was to “strengthen the knowledge base about research funding opportunities among the various faculty members at the different institutions,” particularly historically black colleges and universities.

“In order for faculty members to be successful in attracting research dollars to support what they’re working on, they have to know what’s available to them,” said Crumpton-Young. “And one of the things that’s not commonly shared among HBCUs, or among small institutions, are the opportunities that are available.”

The conference focused on research related to social behavior and economic sciences, “the set of sciences that are related to the human experience,” said Dr. Laura Namy, program director in NSF’s Division of Behavioral and Cognitive Sciences in the Social Behavioral and Economic Sciences Directorate (SBE). The three research divisions within SBE have a total annual budget of over $200 Million.

“The human experience is fundamental to every aspect of society,” said Namy. “And being able to conduct rigorous science to understand the processes by which people experience their everyday lives is really important for being able to both explain and optimize the quality of life for individuals.”

Dr. Orville Bignall, an associate professor of physics at TSU, attended the conference and said he plans to apply for a grant that will help him achieve collaboration between the psychosocial sciences and physics.

“This kind of collaboration will help me to get a process in place to help my students to navigate the proper channel that will help them to be more successful,” said Bignall.

Last year, TSU set a record with $51 million in new research awards. The university recently got a $350,000 grant from NSF to enhance its computing, network and security capacity. Crumpton-Young said the university is hoping to break another record this year, “and a big part of that is for faculty members to know what’s available so we can write those proposals and get funding.”

Dr. Maria de Fatima Lima, dean of Meharry’s School of Graduate Studies and Research, said Meharry and TSU currently have a partnership grant in cancer research and she hopes to see future collaborative efforts to inform faculty and researchers about funding.

“What I would like to see is for us to find other areas of common interest and expand this partnership,” Lima said. “We hope to see the faculty collaborating in research programs and enhancing the research of both schools.”

The National Science Foundation, headquartered in Arlington, Virginia, is the funding source for about 24 percent of all federally supported basic research conducted by America’s colleges and universities.

 

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, 22 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.

District Attorney General Glenn Funk Touts Safety at Colleges, Universities

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (TSU News Service) – Nashville District Attorney General Glenn Funk says he wants to work with the state’s colleges and universities to help keep them safe.

Funk spoke at a Crime Stoppers meeting hosted by Tennessee State University on Feb. 11. The meetings are held at a different regional higher education institution or police facility each month, and allow security officials from various law enforcement agencies to come together and share information about criminal incidents that have occurred at surrounding colleges and universities.

“We try to collectively look at the crime that’s happening in our area,” said Thomas Jackson, commander of TSU’s Police Department and the meeting’s organizer. “And brainstorm about what we can do to make our universities and colleges more safe for our students, faculty and staff.”

In the case of TSU, Funk said the DA’s office has designated a person to be a liaison between the university and his office. He said if there’s a criminal issue on the campus, TSU’s leadership can go to that person and they can make prosecutorial decisions together.

“Whatever the issues are, the only way that we can effectively prosecute cases is to make sure that we have an understanding with law enforcement, or with security, in order to make sure that everybody is on the same page going forward,” Funk said. “One of the reasons I wanted to come out here and talk to this group is I want to make sure that every one of your individual agencies knows, my door is open.”

Other issues at the meeting included efforts to educate students about domestic violence, as well as fraudulent activity.

“The sad thing with domestic violence is a lot of them don’t even know the warning signs,” said Aerin Washington, TSU’s crime prevention officer.

She also said a lot of students fall victim to fraudulent activity, like credit card schemes.

“We see quite a bit of it on campus,” Washington said. “And so there’s definitely room to educate our students about just avoiding the risks that are associated with those activities, and just educating them on how to prevent being victim.”

Funk said he plans to attend future Crime Stopper meetings.

“Hopefully I’ll be coming back to sit and listen,” Funk said before the meeting. “This is kind of where the rubber meets the road when it comes to community safety, and community spirit.”

Besides TSU, other higher education institutions that participate in Crime Stoppers include Aquinas College, Belmont University, Cumberland College, Fisk University, Lipscomb University, Meharry Medical College, Middle Tennessee State University, Nashville State Community College, Trevecca Nazarene College, Vanderbilt University and Vol State Community College.

 

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, 22 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.