Category Archives: NEWS

University to Hold Fall 2013 Commencement Ceremony December 14

commencementNASHVILLE, Tenn. (TSU News Service) – Tennessee State University will confer more than 700 degrees Saturday, Dec. 14 during the University’s Fall 2013 commencement ceremony beginning at 9 a.m. in the Gentry Complex.

Candidates eligible for degree include 440 students earning undergraduate degrees, 219 receiving graduate degrees and 45 doctoral candidates. Nine graduate students will receive education specialist degrees, while eight students will receive graduate certificates. The number of graduates includes those students completing degree requirements in the Summer 2013 semester who are participating in the fall ceremony.

Also notable are 68 students eligible to graduate with honors, including 11 earning summa cum laude (GPA of at least 3.75), 18 magna cum laude (GPA of at least 3.50) and 39 earning cum laude (GPA of at least 3.25).

Bishop Joseph W. Walker III, the charismatic pastor of Mt. Zion Baptist Church, will deliver the keynote address. Walker, described as a teacher, humanitarian, philanthropist, businessman and community volunteer, has been the pastor at Mt Zion since 1992. Under his leadership, the church membership has grown from 175 when he started to 28,000. During that time, the church, considered one of the largest in the city, has expanded beyond its original location in the historic Jefferson Street corridor to seven weekly services in three locations, as well as online and through social media outlets.

Currently the Bishop of Senior Pastors in the Full Gospel Baptist Church Fellowship International, Walker’s leadership at Mt. Zion has also expanded to Jackson, Tenn., where the church has adopted the Zion Church.

A prolific writer, the Baton Rouge, La., native has authored eight books, including his latest, “Becoming A Couple of Destiny: Living, Loving and Creating a Life that Matters,” which he co-wrote with his wife, Dr. Stephanie Walker, assistant professor of Pediatrics and Neonatology at Vanderbilt University.

He holds a bachelor’s degree from Southern University, a Master of Divinity degree from Vanderbilt University, and a Doctor of Ministry from Princeton University. Walker is a member of the Board of Directors of the American Red Cross, and holds a governor-appointed post on the Tennessee Human Rights Commission.

For more information about commencement, visit http://www.tnstate.edu/records/commencement/

Questions about graduation may be directed to the Office of the Registrar at 615-963-5300.

 

 

Department of Media Relations
Tennessee State University
3500 John Merritt Boulevard
Nashville, Tennessee 37209
615.963.5331

 

 

About Tennessee State University

With nearly 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.

HBCUs Looking Beyond Black Students to Stay Competitive

Courtesy of Diverse Issues in Higher Education
Reginald Stuart
Dec. 8, 2013

Tennessee State University’s FUTURO chapter float during the University’s homecoming parade in October. (Photo credit: Daryl Stuart)
Tennessee State University’s FUTURO chapter float during the University’s homecoming parade in October. (Photo credit: Daryl Stuart)

When Tennessee State University (TSU) staged its homecoming parade in October, the parade returned to its roots, beginning on Jefferson Street, the main business corridor of the historically Black neighborhood connecting three widely known historically Black colleges — TSU, Fisk University and Meharry Medical College.

While looking back, the event also gave hints of TSU’s future. Amid the entourage of school bands from Nashville and across the region, as well as signs touting a new direction for TSU, the parade included a float featuring the institution’s first Hispanic student campus organization, FUTURO.

In just more than a year, FUTURO, which means “future” in Spanish, has helped the Tennessee State community become more comfortable with the university enhancing its appeal beyond Blacks, its historic target audience of students, based on years of legalized racial segregation and several decades of tradition.

“It’s nice to be able to show that we, too, have that sense of pride, celebrating that legacy and history,” says Dalila Duarte, 29, a third-year, TSU Ph.D. candidate from Chicago. “Now, it’s not why are we here, but how can we collaborate.”

Duarte, an American-born daughter of immigrants from Cuba and Mexico, says the atmosphere on campus toward Hispanics has gone from puzzled resentment over their presence to learning how much both cultures have in common. This year, the president of FUTURO is a young Black man from Tennessee, a Spanish major who speaks Spanish as well as many Hispanic students.

Diversifying demographics

While many institutions with histories of appealing to niche groups, based on law or tradition, have had open doors for decades, what’s happening recently at TSU and other historically Black colleges is new: they are now aggressively pursuing long-talked-about, yet cautiously embraced, affirmative action and diversity agendas as part of their survival strategy.

Faced with intense competition for their historically “safe pick” of students, HBCUs are becoming more like their non-HBCU peers, campaigning for the nation’s diverse demographics. HBCUs see this strategy as essential to growing enrollment and achieving a level of campus diversity that will make their institutions more appealing and their students competitive in the workforce.

“I think we see across the board HBCUs are diversifying,” says Dr. Kim Bobby, director of the inclusive excellence group at the American Council on Education, the principal umbrella organization of higher education groups, and former chief diversity officer at the University of Puget Sound. “They are doing a lot of different kinds of outreach.”

Indeed, the fears expressed by those urging caution, particularly older HBCU alumni, are based on a strong body of history. The “older” alumni say they want progress, but not the kind they experienced with the desegregation of elementary and secondary schools. The process essentially decimated Black schools, as Blacks had little or no political power to help determine how school systems were to be consolidated. In a matter of years, from the 1950s through the 1970s, hundreds of Black elementary and secondary schools were shut down and their teachers, principals and other staff largely demoted or fired.

Proponents of pushing the diversity envelope at HBCUs note many of the nation’s Black Americans who consider themselves college-ready are increasingly choosing colleges for more than historical reasons. That’s especially true when it comes to those who grew up in the post-segregation era. HBCUs have lost their monopoly on Black students and, despite continued underfunding in the open market for students, are having to meet the demands to change or disappear.

“We are out there letting people know how inclusive we are and narrowing the gap,” says Dr. Jewell Winn, chief diversity officer at TSU and director of the university’s new Office for Diversity and International Affairs.

“Snowball effect” at HBCUs 

Winn and officials at other HBCUs say, despite what many people think, more progress has been made in the area of diversity at HBCUs. They assert too much of the general public, including many alumni of HBCUs, share an inaccurate perception that there is no diversity at HBCUs and other institutions with a history of targeting a niche group.

North Carolina Central University, one of several state-controlled public HBCUs in the state, is ramping up its hunt for Hispanic students. It has joined Hispanic groups in hosting community events, published its website and scholarship aid information in Spanish and English and expanded the campaigning of its student ambassadors beyond traditional neighborhoods.

“It’s not a pulling teeth kind of thing,” says NCCU Director of Undergraduate Admissions Anthony Brooks, referring to the efforts at his institution. “We’ve seen a kind of snowball effect over the years, and a lot of recruiters do it on their own.”

Florida A&M University has also made diversity a high priority as the institution looks toward the future. In its 2013 entering class, the law school counts 42.3 percent of its students as African-American, 31.7 percent as Caucasian, 17.6 percent as Hispanic, 2.8 percent as American Indian and 3 percent as Asian. Women make up nearly 60 percent of the class, the university says.

In Mississippi, historically Black Alcorn State University broke the head coach color line in 2012 when it appointed Jay Hopson, a White Mississippian who grew up not far from the university, as its head coach. There has already been a sprinkling of Whites as assistant coaches and team members at several HBCUs across the nation.

Environment spurs diversity

While most HBCUs are recognizing the need to take decisive action, some institutions have slowly evolved over the years, as Virginia’s Bluefield (VA) State University did. At the once all-Black institution, Whites make up more than 90 percent of the student body, faculty and administration ranks.

In Arkansas, historically White Henderson State University, a four-year state controlled institution, has evolved over the past 30 years into an institution in which students of color make up more than 30 percent of its enrollment.

“A lot of recruitment is not about money,” says Dr. Glen ones, an alumnus and president of Henderson State, and a former national president of the National Association of Diversity Officers in Higher Education. “Money is important. But environment is as important. Do [prospective students] feel welcomed? Do they feel supported, included and see they can grow?”

As a young Black man finishing high school in the post-segregation era, Jones visited Henderson, which was near the community where he grew up. He chose Henderson due to its proximity to home and its environment. Over the years, he has spread word of his experience as a student at Henderson State and, in the process, has had as much impact as a recruiter in helping change the institution’s mix and feel.

Environment has certainly played a role at the University of Texas San Antonio, the rapidly growing public four-year liberal arts institution, designated by the federal government as a Hispanic-Serving Institution.

“We are blessed in our south Texas region to be located in a very diverse area,” says Dr. George Norton, associate vice president for student affairs at UTSA. “We have not had any recruitment strategy that targeted prospective students based on race and/or ethnicity. Our recruitment strategy has targeted well-prepared students.”

Norton says UTSA has been able to maintain a high level of diversity based on the combination of strategy and guidelines, despite raising admissions standards three times in the last five years. Separately, the university has been aggressively raising funds to provide financial aid to students in need of help, as many of its students are the first in their families to enter college and have little money to support such goals.

UTSA’s total enrollment is approximately 28,533. A little more than 12,200 of those students are classified as Hispanic, 11,351 as non-Hispanic Whites and 2,171 as non-Hispanic Blacks. The university counts some 1,612 students as Asian, 128 as American Indian and the remainder is composed of a wide variety from around the world.

“We live in a global society,” says Bobby, stressing the importance of moving ahead while appreciating the history of such institutions as HBCUs. “Students want to go to the best school they can. Every school stands on its own merits.”

 

 

Department of Media Relations
Tennessee State University
3500 John Merritt Boulevard
Nashville, Tennessee 37209
615.963.5331

 

 

About Tennessee State University

With nearly 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.

President Glover Joins Others in Remembering and Honoring Nelson Mandela

NelsonMandela

The following is a statement issued by the University on the passing of Nelson Mandela: 

Tennessee State University President, Dr. Glenda Baskin Glover, joins hundreds in paying tribute to former South African President Nelson Mandela. The 95-year-old Mandela died Thursday evening.  He rose to national prominence during his 27-year imprisonment for treason due to his opposition to the country’s stringent segregation laws.

“The world has truly lost an iconic figure who represented the very essence of humanitarianism,” says Dr. Glover. “Former South African President Nelson Mandela was a selfless individual who took on the role of leadership in his country long before becoming its first Black president . Mandela dedicated his life not only to dismantling apartheid in his native land, but stood against global injustice for all people.”

President Glover adds, “The greatness he embodied as visionary leader to promote a multi-cultural society is the basis of our world today and he is recognized rightfully so as a historic figure in our History and Africana Studies courses at Tennessee State University.

“A few years ago, I had the life-changing experience of visiting Robben Island where Mandela was held as prisoner.  His transformative life leaves a restored nation and an enriched world.”

With profound sadness, TSU honors Nelson Mandela’s commitment to world unity, and we pray for God’s blessings on the Mandela family.

 

 

Department of Media Relations
Tennessee State University
3500 John Merritt Boulevard
Nashville, Tennessee 37209
615.963.5331

 

 

About Tennessee State University

With nearly 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’s Student Affairs Division Receives Performance Award for Excellence

Commitment_Award_2013NASHVILLE, Tenn. (TSU News Service) – Tennessee State University, Division of Student Affairs has earned the Commitment Award in the annual Excellence in Tennessee recognition program administered by the Tennessee Center for Performance Excellence (TNCPE). TNCPE is the only statewide quality program and is patterned on the Baldrige Performance Excellence Program, the national standard for recognizing organizational excellence.

“A concerted effort has been undertaken over the last two years to streamline our processes and improve customer service,” said Dr. A. Dexter Samuels, associate vice president of Student Affairs. “This award affirms what I already know that the staff in the division of student affairs is committed to excellence and to making a positive difference in the lives of our students.”

Dr. A. Dexter Samuels
Dr. A. Dexter Samuels

The Tennessee State University Division of Student Affairs exists to serve the co-curricular needs and facilitate the total development of students.

Through an annual evaluation and assessment process, TNCPE recognizes high-performance organizations that exhibit continuous improvement and best practice processes. This year, TNCPE has named 26 organizations as 2013 Award winners. They represent outstanding achievement in health care, manufacturing, service, education, government and nonprofit.

“Groups trying to improve understand that being successful takes effort from each employee, and a shared commitment to quality and achievement,” said Tennessee Governor Bill Haslam. “Organizations like the Division of Student Affairs at Tennessee State University, play a critical role in making Tennessee a better place to live, work and raise a family.”

Organizations such as Tennessee State University apply to the TNCPE program at one of four levels. As the levels increase, so does the depth and complexity of the application, which is based on the Baldrige Criteria for Performance Excellence. Since the program was founded in 1993, only 22 organizations have attained the Excellence designation. Mountain States Health Alliance will receive the Excellence Award this year, while six organizations will be honored with the Achievement Award. Eighteen organizations, including Tennessee State University, will receive a Commitment Award; and one will receive the Interest Recognition.

Commitment Awards are presented to organizations that are beginning to demonstrate commitment to, and implementation of, performance improvement principles. They have demonstrated progress by identifying and putting in place a measurement system to capture data and analyze results, and some key process improvements, which are directly attributable to a fact-based improvement process.

“This program helps organizations look at the big picture. But it’s not easy–if it were, every organization in the state would be participating,” said TNCPE President Katie Rawls. “Organizations like Tennessee State University are truly passionate about performance excellence and have chosen TNCPE and the Baldrige framework to help them become the best-run organization they can be.”

Tennessee State University, Division of Student Affairs will accept the award at the 21st annual Excellence in Tennessee Awards Banquet on Feb. 19, 2014.

A full list of winners can be found on the TNCPE website www.tncpe.org

 

 

Department of Media Relations
Tennessee State University
3500 John Merritt Boulevard
Nashville, Tennessee 37209
615.963.5331

 

 

About Tennessee State University

With nearly 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 Music Professor Contributes to New American Music Dictionary

Chip Henderson
Chip Henderson

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (TSU News Service) – A music professor from Tennessee State University is one of the latest contributors to one of the largest reference works geared toward music and musicians.

Chip Henderson, an adjunct faculty member in the Department of Music, contributed to The Grove Dictionary of American Music, the principal research source for generations of musicians, and has been widely acclaimed as an indispensable resource.

The new edition, often called AmeriGrove, doubles the original four volumes first published in 1986, and will grow to eight volumes, with 5,592 pages. Of the more than 9,300 articles, more than 4,800 are new.  Henderson, who teaches commercial guitar and music appreciation, submitted five articles to the updated edition.

“It was an exciting project,” said Henderson. “It was a great experience to be a small part of such a large project. I was one of 1,500 writers asked to take part in this great undertaking.”

Henderson submitted articles on Elmer Snowden, Johnny Smith, Scott Hamilton, Larry Coryell and James Blood Ulmer, and will be part of the more than 4,800 new articles.

In an interview on the Oxford University Press website, the editor of the new edition, Charles Hiroshi Garrett, associate professor of musicology at the University of Michigan School of Music, Theater and Dance, said that the shape of the updated AmeriGrove reflects a remarkable effort of teamwork and scholarly cooperation. Nearly seventy editors and advisors—specialists in American music representing top universities and research institutes from across the United States and around the world—devoted substantial time to the project.

“This new edition is a significant makeover. Each of these participants, each assigned to key subject areas, helped design the coverage, scope, and content of the dictionary,” said Garrett. “The editorial team also received and reviewed suggestions from Grove readers and many scholars of American music. Over the course of the project, the contents of the dictionary continued to expand as editors and contributors recognized potential areas of growth and commissioned new articles.”

Garrett added that the new version would take an expanded view of certain American musical forms – country music, for example. To illustrate the scope of the change, he noted that the first edition had about 90 entries about country music.

“In response to the sustained impact of and scholarly interest in country music,” Mr. Garrett said, “the updated dictionary features a newly commissioned, extensive article on country music as well as nearly 300 articles dedicated to individual country musicians, groups and subgenres.”

In addition to country, the dictionary will also expand to capture a wider spectrum of musical activity, and to discuss musical practices often lost in the margins, including Latino, Asian-American, Native American, and Hawaiian music and musicians.

The new dictionary is expected to be published Dec. 2 and will cost $1,195.

 

 

 

Department of Media Relations
Tennessee State University
3500 John Merritt Boulevard
Nashville, Tennessee 37209
615.963.5331

 

 

About Tennessee State University

With nearly 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 Pastor Joseph Walker to Speak at TSU December Commencement

Bishop Joseph W. Walker III
Bishop Joseph W. Walker III

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (TSU News Service) –  Recognized as one of Nashville’s ministerial community’s most educated and influential leaders, Bishop Joseph W. Walker III, the charismatic pastor of Mt. Zion Baptist Church, will be the keynote speaker when more than 500 undergraduate and graduate students receive their degrees during Tennessee State University’s fall commencement on Saturday, Dec. 14.

The commencement begins at 9 a.m. in the Gentry Center on the main TSU campus.

Walker, described as a teacher, humanitarian, philanthropist, businessman and community volunteer, has been the pastor at Mt Zion since 1992. Under his leadership, the church membership has grown from 175 when he started to 28,000. During that time, the church, considered one of the largest in the city, has expanded beyond its original location in the historic Jefferson Street corridor to seven weekly services in three locations, as well as online and through social media outlets.

Currently the Bishop of Senior Pastors in the Full Gospel Baptist Church Fellowship International, Walker’s leadership at Mt. Zion has also expanded to Jackson, Tenn., where the church has adopted the Zion Church.

A prolific writer, the Baton Rouge, La., native has authored eight books, including his latest, “Becoming A Couple of Destiny: Living, Loving and Creating a Life that Matters,” which he co-wrote with his wife, Dr. Stephanie Walker, assistant professor of Pediatrics and Neonatology at Vanderbilt University.

He holds a bachelor’s degree from Southern University, a Master of Divinity degree from Vanderbilt University, and a Doctor of Ministry from Princeton University. Walker is a member of the Board of Directors of the American Red Cross, and holds a governor-appointed post on the Tennessee Human Rights Commission.

In 2001, he launched the New Level Community Development Corporation, which aims to improve the lives of low-and-moderate-income families. He and his wife are co-founders of the non-profit, Dr. Joseph & Stephanie Walker Foundation, which is geared toward education, mentorship and outreach.

Walker, who says he believes in strong work ethic and staying busy, credits his parents, Rosa and Joseph Walker, and especially his father, Joseph Jr., with instilling in him a strong sense of discipline and business-mindedness.

“My summer days throughout most of my youth were spent working with my father,” Joseph III is quoted as saying in his online biography. “I gained my strong work ethic through that experience.”

Named by The Root as one of the 20 Top Preachers in the nation, Walker has appeared on many national TV and radio networks and programs including CNN and the CBS Morning News. He was featured in the film, Black, White and Blues, directed by award-winning Mario Van Peebles.

 

 

 

Department of Media Relations
Tennessee State University
3500 John Merritt Boulevard
Nashville, Tennessee 37209
615.963.5331

 

 

About Tennessee State University

With nearly 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 Holiday Celebration Brings Joy to Needy Families, Senior Citizens

TSU_Holiday FlyerNASHVILLE, Tenn. (TSU News Service) – In a true spirit of giving this holiday season, Tennessee State University will hold a Community Holiday Celebration, Tuesday, Dec. 3 on the University’s main campus. The event gives students, faculty and staff the opportunity to spread holiday cheer to the community.

The occasion will include a tree-lighting ceremony with songs, Santa and picture-taking at 5:30 p.m., on the foot of the steps in the circle at the Campus Center. Immediately following the ceremony, several students, faculty, staff and alumni will distribute gifts to designated needy families in the community.

At 10 a.m., TSU President, Dr. Glenda Glover, accompanied by her Cabinet as well as students and staff, will visit a Nashville assisted-living center to distribute gifts of basic need supplies, and poinsettias grown on the TSU farm to residents of the center. This will also include holiday songs and other cheerful activities.

To assist in these efforts, President Glover is asking for donations of nonperishable food items, unwrapped toys for boys and girls ages 6 and up, and toiletries and personal items. She said unlike in the past when TSU adopted a needy family to help, this year’s goal is to help an entire community.

“We realize there are many charities and opportunities for our faculty, staff and students to support during the holidays and throughout the year,” Dr. Glover said. “However, we encourage you to join in this celebration to help make the holiday season a little brighter for those families that are in need.”

To collect donations and gift items, drop-off boxes are located cross the main and downtown campuses. Gifts and card contributions must be delivered to the Office of Public Relations and Communications in the McWherter Administration Building Room 222. Cash or check contributions are accepted in the Office of the University Bursar, also in the McWherter Building on the first floor.

For more information on how and where to donate, please call (615) 963-7451.

 

 

 

Department of Media Relations
Tennessee State University
3500 John Merritt Boulevard
Nashville, Tennessee 37209
615.963.5331

 

 

About Tennessee State University

With nearly 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 Civil and Architectural Engineering Students Capture Awards at Water Resources Conference

Students from the University's Civil and Architectural Engineering program recently attended the annual Tennessee American Water Resources Association conference at Montgomery Bell State Park, where they had the opportunity to present works of research to conference attendees. (Courtesy photo)
Students from the University’s Civil and Architectural Engineering program recently attended the annual Tennessee American Water Resources Association conference at Montgomery Bell State Park, where they had the opportunity to present works of research to conference attendees. (Courtesy photo)

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (TSU News Service) – More than a dozen students associated with the environmental engineering program at Tennessee State University made a dramatic showing at the annual Tennessee American Water Resources Association conference including three first-place and grand-prize award winners.

Held Nov. 4-6 at Montgomery Bell State Park, 14 students represented the University’s engineering program at this year’s gathering. Overall, more than 300 participants attended the conference including scientists and engineers from private consulting firms, state and federal agencies, and academia.

The TSU representatives included area high school students conducting research in the laboratory under the guidance and mentorship of the University’s engineering faculty members, and undergraduate and graduate environmental engineering majors.

Students from the TSU program competed in the poster presentation section of the conference against students from area high schools, including Hume-Fogg Magnet, Martin Luther King Jr. Magnet, and Stratford Magnet high schools, as well as Vanderbilt, Tennessee Tech University and the University of Tennessee-Knoxville.

“The competition was fierce and every student did an excellent job describing their research to attendees,” said Dr. Thomas Byl, assistant professor in the Department of Civil and Architectural Engineering, and advisor to the group.

According to Byl, the TSU group presented a diverse array of research projects that included the development of a model to describe chemical transport in karst aquifers; storm runoff chemistry; biodegradation of quaternary ammonia compounds and linear alkyl sulfonates, sorption isotherms, and karst hydrology near the Cumberland River; electricity generation by wetland bacteria; and groundwater microbial response to antibiotics.

“My congratulations go out to the students and Dr. Byl for all of their excellent works,” said Dr. Gouranga Banik, chair of the Civil and Architectural Engineering deaprtment. “It is indeed a great honor for the department to get so many awards for the students from a reputed conference like AWRA.”

High school senior Petra Byl  from Hume Fogg Academic Magnet High School, speaks to a conference attendee about her research project.
High school senior Petra Byl from Hume Fogg Academic Magnet High School, speaks to a conference attendee about her research project.

Title of poster presentation, student researcher, and school affiliation included:

Biodegradation of Quaternary Ammonia Compounds by Biofilm and Free-Living Bacteria. Zheer Ahmed, Martin Luther King Jr. Academic Magnet High School

Antibiotic Resistance and Substrate Utilization by Bacteria Affiliated with Cave Streams at Different Levels of Mammoth Cave. Petra Byl, Hume Fogg Academic Magnet High School (1st place high school, and, Grand Prize Award)

Reduction of Selected Chemical from Storm Runoff by Filters and Biodegradation. JeTara Brown, TSU  (1st place undergraduate research)

Solute Transport in Karst, a Dual Continuum Model. Justin Harris, TSU

Re-Designing the RV Waste-Transfer Station at MACA to Avoid Spills. Sean McMillan, TSU

Regression Analysis to Determine Correlations between Environment and Storm Runoff Water Quality. David Solomon, TSU

Fate and Transport of Chemicals at Mammoth Cave, Ky. Ashley West, TSU

Aquifer Tests to Characterize the Hydraulic Connection between the Cumberland River and Groundwater in Nashville, Tenn. Aras Barzanji, TSU

The Development and Use of Sorption Isotherms to Optimize Storm-Filter Design. Hung-wai Ho, TSU

Enhancing the Design of Microbial Batteries in Wetlands. Lina Khoury, TSU (1st place graduate research)

Evaluation of Green Remediation Strategies at the Velsicol Landfill, Hardeman County, Tennessee. Loreal Spear, TSU

The Tennessee Section of the American Water Resources Association strives to promote the advancement of water resources research, planning, and education by providing an annual forum to exchange multidisciplinary ideas about water issues throughout Tennessee and the surrounding region. The Tennessee Section has provided this annual forum since 1988.

 

 

 

Department of Media Relations
Tennessee State University
3500 John Merritt Boulevard
Nashville, Tennessee 37209
615.963.5331

 

 

About Tennessee State University

With nearly 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 Forensic Team Captures Back-To-Back Wins

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (TSU News Service) – Members of the Tennessee State University Forensics team traveled to the bayou state recently to compete in the 39th Annual Red River Swing Debate and Forensic tournament in Shreveport, La.

Competing in their first International Public Debate Association tournament, the team competed in the event Nov. 8-10 at Louisiana State University-Shreveport and joined nearly 30 other programs, colleges and universities from around the country.

“Our debate team is off to a great start,” said Director of Forensics, Shaunte Caraballo. “I look forward to increasing the size and success of our newly added debate team.”

The teams competed in two separate tournaments involving 11 speaking and interpretive events, and one tournament involving three different debate formats over the three-day tournament.

TSU’s Artrisa Fulton, a Criminal Justice major, was the team’s big winner. The senior from West Palm Beach, Fla., was the Octafinalist in the IPDA. She also captured third place in the Dramatic Interpretation category. Michael Thomas, a senior Accounting major from Memphis, Tenn., won 6th place in the Persuasive Speaking category.

Building on their successes, the team traveled to Jefferson City, Tenn., a week later for the Tennessee Porch Swing at Carson Newman University Nov. 15-17.

First year team member, Michael Thomas won 1st place and Top Novice in Persuasive Speaking at the second half of the swing. Assistant Directors of Forensics, Adam Key and Jeremy Coffman jumped up and hugged each other when the award was announced.

“It is extremely rare for a novice to win such a high award,” said Key.

Thomas also won Top Novice in Programmed Oral Interpretation, along with Fulton, who took 4th place in Dramatic Interpretation. They are both just one win away from qualifying for the national tournament held at Arizona State University in Tempe, Ariz.

The Forensics team will next head to Ohio State University for the Holiday Frolic in December.

 

 

 

Department of Media Relations
Tennessee State University
3500 John Merritt Boulevard
Nashville, Tennessee 37209
615.963.5331

 

 

About Tennessee State University

With nearly 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 vice president elected to APLU leadership committee

Dr. A. Dexter Samuels, associate vice president for student affairs at TSU, has been elected to serve on the executive committee for the Council on Student Affairs with APLU. (photo by John Cross, TSU Media Relations)
Dr. A. Dexter Samuels, associate vice president for student affairs at TSU, has been elected to serve on the executive committee for the Council on Student Affairs with the APLU. (photo by John Cross, TSU Media Relations)

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (TSU News Service) – Tennessee State University’s associate vice president for Student Affairs has been elected to a leadership position with the Association of Public and Land-Grant Universities, a non-profit organization with members across the country to advance learning.

Dr. A. Dexter Samuels will serve for three years on the Executive Committee for the Council on Student Affairs.

“This is a great honor, and will be an excellent opportunity to meeting and work with colleagues from across the country to discuss best practices in student affairs,” said Samuels. “The APLU is an excellent organization that deals with innovation and real student issues.”

The CSA deals with many issues that are critical to student success in college, such as admissions, student financial aid, health and wellness, and graduation rates. The council sponsors conference presentations and informal forums to discuss issues that affect students’ overall experience at college issues. The parent organization, APLU, has participants from all 50 states.

The APLU is a research, policy, and advocacy organization representing 219 public research universities, land-grant institutions, state university systems, and related organizations. Founded in 1887, APLU is the nation’s oldest higher education association dedicated to advancing learning, discovery and engagement.

Samuels adds the new leadership position to others he currently holds. He also serves as the vice chairman of the Board of Directors for the Metropolitan Nashville Airport Authority, and serves on the board for the Martha O’Bryan Center.

 

 

 

Department of Media Relations
Tennessee State University
3500 John Merritt Boulevard
Nashville, Tennessee 37209
615.963.5331

 

 

About Tennessee State University

With nearly 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.