Category Archives: SCHOOLS AND COLLEGES

TSU Legendary Track and Field Coach Ed Temple Remembered

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (TSU News Service) – Before he became a heavyweight champion and changed his name to Muhammad Ali, Cassius Clay sat down on a bench beside Ed Temple at the 1960 Olympics in Rome and boasted that he’d one day hold the prestigious boxing title.

What Clay didn’t realize, was that he was actually talking to a legend in the making.

Clay went on to win a gold medal in Rome as a light heavyweight, and eventually became a heavyweight champion a few years later when he beat Sonny Liston, backing his claim to Temple that “people are going to be running to see me one day.”

Coincidentally, “running” made Temple a legend. Under his leadership, five members of Tennessee State University’s track team earned gold medals at the Rome Olympics. Wilma Rudolph, alone, won three gold medals and became the first American woman to achieve such a feat at any of the Olympic Games.

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TSU Coach Ed Temple and his famed Tigerbelles. (TSU archives)

Over the years, Temple went on to lead 40 athletes to the Olympics. His famed Tigerbelles, including Rudolph, snagged a total of 27 Olympic medals, 15 of which were gold.

Temple died Sept. 22 at the age of 89 after an illness. He and Ali remained friends after they met in Rome, and had a mutual respect for one another. Shortly after Ali’s death, Temple had talked about his first meeting with the brazen fighter in Rome, and how Ali visited TSU from time to time to see him, Rudolph and some of the other athletes.

But while he was proud of his relationship with Ali, nothing made his chest stick out more than the accomplishments of his athletes.

“They are an inspiration to everybody,” Temple said in an interview shortly before his death. “It just shows what can be done. Where there’s a will, there’s a way.”

Tennessee State University President Glenda Glover called Temple a “global icon in the world of track and field,” and lauded him for what he did for athletes outside the sport.

“His accomplishments are unparalleled and continue to resonate even today on our campus and with any organization participating in the sport,” she said. “Of the 40 athletes Coach Temple trained and had participate in the Olympics, 100 percent of them received college degrees. This speaks to his greatness and impact. He was a legend of a man. I am so thankful and proud of all he did for the university. Tennessee State will always remember Ed Temple, the man and the coach.”

Ed Temple

TSU Director of Athletics Teresa Phillips echoed Glover’s sentiment.

“We have truly lost a crown jewel in the treasure chest of our university,” she said. “His life, his work and his results are textbook of what one would like to emulate.”

Temple’s achievements were even more impressive coming in the midst of severe racism and discrimination that permeated the United States during the 1950s and 1960s.

“There were times when riots were going on, but they kept running and competing,” said Dwight Lewis, who is co-authoring a book about the Tigerbelles. “They stuck with it and performed to the best of their ability, and won.”

For many of his athletes, Temple wasn’t just a coach, but also a father figure.

“I always looked at Coach Temple as a father figure and a man of truth and wisdom,” said TSU Olympian Chandra Cheeseborough-Guice, a former Tigerbelle who inherited the title of TSU track and field coach from Temple. “He is one of the finest people I have ever had an opportunity to meet. He really brought out the best in me. He made me realize my potential that had not been tapped.”

Former Tigerbelle Edith McGuire Duvall said Temple was there for her after she lost her father.

“This man treated us all like his kids,” Duvall said. “He impressed upon me to finish school. We were there to run track, but also to get an education and to be ladies.”

Temple was head coach of the U.S. Olympic Women’s Track and Field teams in 1960 and 1964, and assistant coach in 1980. He was inducted into nine different Halls of Fame, including the Olympic Hall of Fame in 2012, in which he was one of only four coaches to be inducted. He also served as a member of the U.S. Olympic Committee, the international Women’s Track and Field Committee and the Nashville Sports Council.

In addition to being part of the Tennessee State University Hall of Fame, Temple’s legacy continues in such recognitions as the Edward S. Temple Track at TSU; Ed Temple Boulevard in Nashville, adjacent to the TSU campus; the Edward Temple Award established by the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) Track and Field Coaches Association; and the Edward S. Temple Seminars: Society and Sports, held annually at TSU.

Temple’s autobiography, Only the Pure in Heart Survive, was published in 1980. The book, along with additional papers and memorabilia from his lifetime of achievement, are part of the Special Collections department in TSU’s Brown-Daniel Library.

“Even after his retirement, he continued to represent TSU,” said Tennessee Board of Regents Chancellor David Gregory. “He emphasized excellence in athletics, academics and in life. His former athletes are a testament to his mentorship.”

In 2015, a 9-foot bronze statue was unveiled in Temple’s likeness at First Tennessee Park in Nashville.

“Even the Bible says a prophet is seldom honored in his hometown,” U.S. Congressman Jim Cooper said at a ceremony for the unveiling of the statue. “But here we are honoring perhaps one of the greatest coaches in all of history.”

Following Temple’s death, Nashville Mayor Megan Barry released a statement directing departments and agencies to light the KVB Bridge and public buildings blue the night of Sept. 23 to honor Temple.

“Coach Temple was in a league of his own as a coach and teacher, and Nashville will miss him dearly,” Barry said.

TSU track and field exhibits are a part of the Smithsonian’s National Museum of African American History and Culture in Washington, D.C. They are there mainly because of Coach Temple and his accomplishments with the TSU program and Olympics.

To read more about Coach Ed Temple, visit: www.tnstate.edu/edtemple.

Department of Media Relations

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

About Tennessee State University

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

 

 

 

Tennessee State University’s Aristocrat of Bands performs at the White House

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (TSU News Service) – Tennessee State University’s Aristocrat of Bands was invited to Washington, D.C. to celebrate the opening of the National Museum of African American History and Culture.

The famed band performed on the lawn of the White House on Friday, Sept. 23, a day before the museum was to open on the National Mall.

“We are extremely proud that our band and university are a part of this historic event with President Barack Obama and First Lady Michelle Obama for the grand opening of the National Museum of African American History and Culture in our nation¹s capital,” said Tennessee State University President Glenda Glover, who attended the event. “This is a proud moment for TSU as we continue to build
on our great legacy. TSU’s Aristocrat of Bands is the first HBCU band to perform for this administration at the White House.”

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Members of TSU’s Aristocrat of Bands outside White House. (submitted photo)

Dr. Reginald McDonald, director of University Bands, called the opportunity a “once in a lifetime chance.”

“A lot of people would never be able to say that they’ve had the opportunity to meet the President of the United States, let alone play on the White House lawn,” McDonald said. “This is tremendous.”

TSU has a number of items that will be part of opening exhibits at the museum, which has built a collection of about 40,000 artifacts. Several of the items are tied to legendary TSU Track and Field Coach Ed Temple, who died Thursday at the age of 89.

Glover said while the visit to the White House was exciting, it was also somewhat somber because of Temple’s death.

“This is a sad time as we mourn the loss of our beloved Coach Ed temple, who would have attended the event,” she said. “TSU has a number of sports-related items in the museum’s opening exhibits that are there because of the accomplishments of Temple at TSU
and the Olympics.”

Grant Winrow, TSU’s director of special projects, worked with Kelli Sharpe, assistant vice president for public relations and communications, to help the museum coordinate the display of the university items.

Winrow said the items, as well as the band’s performance, showcase TSU’s “excellence.”

“Now all the world can see what our great university has produced,” Winrow said.

Smithsonian officials estimate annual visits to the museum will average between four to five million people in its first few years.

 

Department of Media Relations

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

About Tennessee State University

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

 

 

 

TSU Project on Best Practices in Nursery Production System Selected for Federal Funding

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (TSU News Service) – A Tennessee State University project to promote best management practices in the nursery production system for the Mid-South region is one of 45 across the nation selected by the U.S. Department of Agriculture to share $26.6 million for innovative conservation initiatives.

TSU will receive nearly $793,000 through its College of Agriculture, Human and Natural Sciences to enhance the current Southern Nursery Industry “Guide for Best Management Practices.”

As part of the project, TSU will also recommend modifications to the USDA NRCS Conservation Practice Standards that specifically address natural resource and water-quality concerns relating to the nursery industry in Tennessee, Kentucky, North Carolina, South Carolina, Virginia and Georgia.

The three-year funding, received through a highly competitive grant process, is the first awarded by the USDA through its Conservation Innovation Grant program to an 1890 Land-Grant university. As a matching-funds grant, the total amount for the project is about $1.5 million.

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Dr. Dharma Pitchay

Dr. Dharma Pitchay, assistant professor of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences, is the principal investigator of the project. The co-principal investors are Drs. Bharat Pokharel, Sudipta Rakshit, Prabode Illukpitiya, Anthony Witcher and Chandra Reddy.

“This is a very prestigious grant to win as historically NRCS has not awarded CIG grants to 1890 universities,” said Reddy, who is dean of the College of Agriculture, Human and Natural Sciences.

He said TSU will partner with a number of institutions in the region to implement the project, as well as set up a training laboratory on campus to train NRCS or Natural Resources Conservation Services educators in the new technologies.

“Awarding this prestigious grant is an acknowledgment that Tennessee State University has immediately useful agricultural technologies to promote with stakeholder communities in the state and across the region. I congratulate Dr. Pitchay, the co-PIs and institutional partners in winning this grant for us,” Reddy added.

Pitchay said the anticipated outcome of the project would include a trained cadre of growers, extension workers, and field technicians, as well as modification to existing and development of new BMPs and conservation practices.

“We also expect to send messages to nursery growers on the benefits of protecting natural resources and demonstration sites for future conservation field days and training programs,” Pitchay 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 38 undergraduate, 25 graduate and seven doctoral programs. TSU has earned a top 20 ranking for Historically Black Colleges and Universities according to U.S. News and World Report, and rated as one of the top universities in the country by Washington Monthly for social mobility, research and community service. Founded in 1912, Tennessee State University celebrated 100 years in Nashville during 2012. Visit the University online at tnstate.edu.

Southern Heritage Classic Week Brings Victory, Builds Relationships for TSU

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (TSU News Service) – For Tennessee State University, the 27th Southern Heritage Classic was all that – classic.

The TSU Tigers trounced the Jackson State University Tigers 40-26 before more than 46,000 at the Liberty Bowl in Memphis, Tennessee, to culminate a weeklong series of activities and celebration.

The TSU victory was their fifth straight over the JSU Tigers, and improves TSU to 16-11 in the Southern Heritage Classic.

But the weeklong celebration was more than about football.

The TSU administration, staff, students and alumni engaged in a number of academic and relationship building activities that impact student learning, recruitment and support.

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President Glover speaks to reporters in the Liberty Bowl minutes before signing a partnership agreement with national syndicate radio host Tom Joyner that would increase the number of STEM teachers in Memphis and Shelby County, and Metro Nashville. (Photo by Emmanuel Freeman, TSU Media Relations).

A day before the football game, TSU and national syndicated radio host Tom Joyner announced a partnership that could give Tennessee’s two largest school districts a major boost in STEM teachers.

The initiative encourages community college graduates to attend TSU and teach in Memphis and Nashville after graduation.

“Today’s agreement with the Tom Joyner Foundation will help deserving students from five of our community colleges fulfill their desires to attend Tennessee State without the distractions of worrying about how to pay for tuition and fees,” said TSU President Glenda Glover. “Most importantly, we’re providing Memphis and Shelby County, along with the Metropolitan Nashville school system, with much needed STEM teachers for the students.”

Following the signing ceremony, President Glover and some senior members of the administration stopped over at Hanley Elementary School, where the president received a rousing welcome by the more than 600 cheering students in the school’s gymnasium.

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President Glover gives a pep talk to more than 600 elementary students during a stopover at Hanley Elementary School in Memphis. To Dr. Glover’s left is Dr. Sha Fanion, Aspire Hanley 2 Elementary principal and TSU graduate. (Photo by Emmanuel Freeman)

“Do you want to go to college?” “What do you want to be when you grow up?” “Have you heard about Tennessee State University?” “Do you know what a university president does?”

These were questions Glover posed to the excited students, with a general mix of overwhelming “yes” and some “no” responses to each question.

“Our expectation for Dr. Glover’s visit is for scholars to know college is for certain no matter where they come from,” said Dr. Sha Fanion, principal of Aspire Hanley 2 Elementary and a 2003 graduate of TSU with a bachelor’s degree in special education. “Prior to Dr. Glover coming, we talked about her and the role of a university president. They were excited to know that she is a native of Memphis.”

Earlier during the week at the Memphis/Shelby County Presidential Reception, a recruitment ceremony for aspiring students and their parents, officials gave out scholarship information and other admission requirements.

Another key activity of the Southern Heritage Classic week is the Alumni Mixer hosted by the Office of Institutional Advancement, to thank alumni and supporters of TSU for their contribution. More than 200 filled the reception hall of Case Management, Inc., to meet former school mates and friends, as well as dine and receive updates from officials about activities and development at their alma mater.

“We just want to say thank you for all that you do for Tennessee State University to help keep needy students in school,” Glover said. “Your continued financial, material and other support and gifts are making a big difference in our students’ lives. We are thankful beyond measure for your support.”

At the VIP Mayor’s Reception, another mainstay of the classic week, officials of Baptist Memorial Health Care presented President Glover with a check for $5,000. The fund is to support a scholarship for a deserving student from Shelby County, who is in the allied health program at TSU.

Department of Media Relations

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

About Tennessee State University

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

Tennessee State University and Tom Joyner Foundation partner to increase math, biology, chemistry teachers in State

MEMPHIS, Tenn. (TSU News Service) – The State’s two largest school districts could see an increase in math, biology and chemistry teachers thanks to a partnership between Tennessee State University and national syndicated radio host Tom Joyner.

The initiative, which encourages community college graduates to attend TSU and teach in Memphis and Nashville after graduation, was announced at a news conference in Memphis on Friday, Sept. 9, a day before the Southern Heritage Classic game between TSU and Jackson State University.

The partnership seeks to get more students interested in science, technology, engineering and math, or STEM. It will offer full scholarships to students graduating from five Tennessee community colleges: Southwest Tennessee, Nashville State, Volunteer State, Motlow State, and Columbia State.

“Today’s agreement with the Tom Joyner Foundation will help deserving students from five of our community colleges fulfill their desires to attend Tennessee State without the distractions of worrying about how to pay for tuition and fees,” said TSU President Glenda Glover. “Most importantly, we’re providing Memphis and Shelby County, along with the Metropolitan Nashville school system, with much needed STEM teachers for the students.”

Tom Joyner said he’s glad the initiative will not only help to produce more STEM teachers, but also ease students’ financial burdens.

“We always say that it’s one thing to go to school, but it’s another thing to stay in school,” said Joyner, whose mother was raised at then Tennessee A&I State College by his great aunt, Jane Elliott Hall. A building was named in her honor.

The Tom Joyner Foundation will provide 75 percent of the scholarship funds, and the rest will come from the NSF funded Tiger Teach Initiative and TSU’s Office of Community College Initiatives.

Sharon Peters, executive director of TSU’s Community College Initiatives, said the scholarship program is very much needed.

“We don’t have enough young people filling STEM careers,” Peters said. “A full scholarship to teach in math and biology or chemistry should lead to more teachers, particularly in Nashville and Memphis where we need them.”

School officials acknowledged the need for STEM teachers and lauded the partnership.

“As a system, we always have a shortage of science and math teachers,” said Roderick Richmond, director of student support services for Shelby County Schools. “So I’m really excited about the partnership with Tennessee State and the Tom Joyner Foundation.”

Students beginning their first semester of community college in fall 2016 will be eligible for the scholarship program. They must graduate from the two-year institution with a 3.0 grade point average, and maintain a 3.0 GPA while at TSU, according to requirements. Graduates must teach within the Nashville or Memphis area.

“This partnership gives our students an opportunity to fulfill their dreams,” said Tracy Hall, president of Southwest Tennessee Community College.

Tom Joyner, Jr., who oversees the foundation, agreed.

“This ensures that more students are able to graduate,” he said. “It ensures more children will be placed where they’re needed, the STEM classrooms of Tennessee, as well as throughout America.”

The Tom Joyner Foundation supports historically black colleges and universities with scholarships, endowments, and capacity building enhancements. Since it was created in 1997, the foundation has raised more than $65 million to help students stay in school.

Last year, the foundation selected TSU to be a “school of the month.” Under the designation, the foundation awarded scholarships to students throughout the month and featured TSU’s accomplishments on Tom Joyner’s weekly morning program.

To learn more about the Tom Joyner Foundation, visit: http://tomjoynerfoundation.org.

Department of Media Relations

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

About Tennessee State University

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

 

TSU graduate ready for Paralympic Games

 

Courtesy: WSMV News

Click for full original story

NASHVILLE, TN (WSMV) – Athletes who have defied tremendous odds will take center stage in Rio de Janeiro at the opening of the Paralympic Games.

The Games got underway Wednesday, Sept. 8.

Dozens of Nashville residents will have a reason to cheer as Tennessee State University’s own Markeith Price prepares to compete.

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Markeith Price

Price got his first shot at the games in London, but did not place. He is hoping this time will be different.

“I know I’m going to be excited. I know I’m going to be nervous. But I’ll just have a smile on my face the whole time and just enjoy myself,” Price said. “And when it’s go time and ready to compete, it’s go time.”

Like most runners, Price spends early mornings practicing starts, lifting weights, and improving his times at the 100 and 400 meter events.

But unlike most athletes, Price cannot see much of the track.

“At the age of 3, I got diagnosed with something called optic atrophy, which is damage to the optic nerves,” he said.

The nerves that connect the eyes to the brain are damaged for Price. He can barely see five feet in front of him.

“Honestly, I can only see but so far,” Price said. “Like we’re talking now, I’m looking straight in the camera, but I really can’t see the picture.”

But Price never let sight hold him back. As a child, he said when he couldn’t see the lines on the track, he learned to feel them.

“One thing I like to say is, yes, I’m limited by sight, but I am not limited by my faith,” he said.

He took that tenacity with him to TSU, where he joined the track team and trained under Coach Chandra Cheeseborough.

“We treated Markeith as a regular athlete,” Cheeseborough said. “He would be on relays, expected to jump, run, whatever event we put him in. It was not limitation. We did not succumb to his disability.”

Price credits TSU for making him the athlete he is today as he sports USA Paralympic gear.

“I’ve got the Team USA with the Nike on the chest,” Price said, smiling.

Price said he can’t wait to compete for a medal and make his family and Nashville proud.

“To all my family and friends, to all my coaches, Coach Cheeseborough, to TSU family, I want to say thank you for supporting me. I appreciate you guys for all that you’ve done,” he said.

The Paralympic Games Opening Ceremony begins at 6 p.m. on NBCSports. They are also available to watch online.

Price will be running in the 100 and 400 meter races on Thursday.

Copyright 2016 WSMV (Meredith Corporation). All rights reserved.

Department of Media Relations

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

About Tennessee State University

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

Marine Corps Leadership Seminar Teaches TSU Business Students Critical Skills for the Real World

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (TSU News Service) – Tennessee State University business majors are taking notes from the U.S. military.

On Sept. 7, more than 40 students from the College of Business participated in a daylong leadership seminar conducted by a group of Marines.

The workshop was part of Marine Week, an annual event in which the Corps take over a major city to show the public the capabilities of the U.S. Marine. It includes displays of some of the military’s big guns and hard wares, as well as appearances at schools and veteran hospitals.

At the downtown Avon Williams Campus, students participated in the Marine Corps Leadership Seminar, which exposes business students to Marine Corps leadership principles that ensure success in the business world.

It emphasizes courage, tenacity and teamwork they say are needed to “help you stand out from the competition.”

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Lt. Gen. Ronald L. Bailey

“We really think that the same leadership traits and principles that are used in the Marine Corps, whether on the battlefield or whether at bases or stations, are the same type of leadership that is required and expected of business leaders,” Marine Lt. Gen. Ronald L. Bailey said.

A 39-year veteran of the U.S. military, Bailey is the Marine deputy commandant for Plans, Policies and Operations.

He said the seminar also provides an opportunity to expose Tennessee State University students to young Marines as they talk about their experiences in the Corps.

“The leadership traits and principles that they have lived through in the Marine Corps are the same ones that the students can gain from, such as integrity and initiative, to be successful in the business world,” Bailey said.

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Darien Munroe

Derrien Munroe is a senior business administration major with concentration in marketing. His future goal is to own a marketing firm. He said the seminar was very timely and taught him skills that could be critical in his future.

“What I take away from this seminar is how to be a better leader using ethics and morals to problem solve and develop better decision-making to better cope in life,” Munroe said. “I learned snippets and tools to correlate in the business world.”

The Dean of the College of Business, Dr. Millicent Lownes-Jackson, said the Marine Corps Leadership Seminar was in line with the goal of the college to equip business students with a “strong portfolio of valuable leadership skills” that attract potential employers.

“That is why this leadership seminar was so vastly important, as it afforded our students the opportunity to learn the Marine’s world-renowned principles that form the traits and values that define character as a leader,” Lownes-Jackson said.

This marks the first year of the College’s involvement with Marine Week Nashville. 

For more information about U.S. Marine Week events, visit www.usmarineweek.comDepartment of Media Relations

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

About Tennessee State University

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

TSU Professor Receives State, National Recognitions for Works in Extension and Outreach

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (TSU News Service) – A Tennessee State University professor, known for his work with farmers and Extension agents throughout Tennessee, has received multiple awards from the Tennessee Association of Agricultural Agents and Specialists, and the National Association of County Agricultural Agents.

Official photo
Dr. Jason de Koff

Jason de Koff, associate professor in the Department of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences, received the Early Career Award, Achievement Award, and Communication Award from TAAA&S. The awards were presented in May at the organization’s annual meeting in Sevierville, Tennessee.

In July, de Koff, now in his sixth year at TSU, was given the NACAA Achievement Award and the Search for Excellence in Crop Production Award at the group’s annual meeting in Little Rock, Arkansas.

“I am quite honored by these awards,” de Koff said. “I plan to continue to represent TSU and Tennessee by providing my research and experiences to those who need them.”

The Early Career Award is the second for de Koff. In 2015, he won the prestigious American Society of Agronomy Early Career Professional Award for his contribution to the field of agronomy in education and research.

A professor of agronomy and soil science, de Koff’s primary area of research is on bioenergy crop production, with specific emphasis on crops like switchgrass and winter canola.

His extension program provides educational training opportunities to Extension agents as well as demonstration workshops on biodiesel production to youth and farmers.

Department of Media Relations

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

About Tennessee State University

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

For the Third Year Straight a TSU Student Has been Selected White House HBCU All-Star

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (TSU News Service) – Jeneisha Harris is a national all-star.

The TSU junior double major was among 73 students from across the nation who were named 2016 HBCU All-Stars by the White House Initiative on Historically Black Colleges and Universities on August 19.

This is the third consecutive year that a TSU student has been selected for this prestigious honor.

The HBCU All-Stars comprise undergraduate, graduate and professional students who are being recognized for their accomplishments in academics, leadership, and civic engagement.

A White House release said over the next year, Harris and her fellow all-stars will serve as ambassadors of the White House Initiative, providing outreach and communication with fellow students about the value of education and networking resources.

Through social media and relationships with community-based organizations, the students will also share “proven practices” that support opportunities for young people to achieve their education and career potential.

“This honor means a lot to me,” said Harris, a combined biology and psychology major with a 3.4 GPA from Memphis, Tennessee. “Being an HBCU All-Star also honors my university, which I intend to use to engage in and promote educational programs to benefit young people in the community especially in my hometown.”

In announcing the 2016 cohorts, Kim Hunter Reed, the acting executive director of the White House Initiative on HBCUs, said the initiative is looking forward to working with the new class of HBCU All-Stars to promote opportunities for all young people.

“Our goal is to provide a unique opportunity for these talented students that exposes them to critical national conversations and thought leaders,” Reed said. “No doubt they will make their mark and represent their campuses well.”

Previous TSU HBCU All-Stars include Lauren Wigging, in 2015; and Jeremiah T. Cooper, in 2014.

Department of Media Relations

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

About Tennessee State University

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

First-semester freshmen get new ties, good advice

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (TSU News Service) – Tennessee State University is making sure its students are prepared for success – or better yet, “tied” to it.

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TSU First-semester freshmen receive guidance on tie tying. (photo by Lucas Johnson, TSU Media Relations)

On August 23, first-semester male freshmen packed the Forum in TSU’s Campus Center for the second annual “Tied to Success” program. All of the young men were given reflex blue colored ties with the name of the university in white letters at the base of the tie.

And for those individuals who needed assistance tying just the right knot, university officials and community leaders were on hand to provide assistance.

“Many of them will be going into professional arenas, and some have never even worn a tie,” said Frank Stevenson, TSU’s dean of students. “And so this is kind of our right of passage into that professional world; we’re preparing them now.”

State Rep. Harold Love, Jr., an alumnus of TSU, agreed. In addition to the ties, he applauded the program for helping the new students assimilate into the collegiate culture. Following the tie tying and male bonding, TSU officials talked to the freshmen about how they should behave on campus, and in general.

“I’ve always appreciated my alma mater because it took young men and made them better,” said Love, who attended the program. “When we talk about African-American males going into their freshman year, it’s important for them to understand that wearing of the tie is essential because they will need one for job interviews. And they may end up with a job one day like mine, where they’ll be wearing one almost everyday.”

Orlandis Timmons of Huntsville, Alabama, said he appreciated the orientation, and that the tie provides a “better look for TSU.”

“It’s great representation at the school, and for us as individuals, as young men,” said Timmons, who plans to major in psychology.

More than 1,200 first-time freshmen are enrolled at TSU this fall.

Department of Media Relations

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About Tennessee State University

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