Category Archives: SCHOOLS AND COLLEGES

After 44 years, TSU Engineer and Administrator Michael Busby “Retiring with a Great Deal of Joy”

Micheal Busby, former educator, administrator and interim associate Vice President for Research and Sponsored Programs, retired June 30 from TSU after nearly 44 years of service. (photo by Emmanuel Freeman, TSU Media Relations)
Micheal Busby, former educator, administrator and interim associate Vice President for Research and Sponsored Programs, retired June 30 from TSU after nearly 44 years of service. (photo by Emmanuel Freeman, TSU Media Relations)

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (TSU News Service) – Even with the development of a widely recognized astronomy program that saw the construction of a robotic observatory center, and the detection of a planet orbiting another star – all under his watch – Michael Busby is not jumping at any credit for a mounting of scientific advances at Tennessee State University.

“I have been fortunate to work with some very talented and gifted people who made these things possible,” said Busby, who retired June 30 from TSU after nearly 44 years as an engineer, professor and administrator.

“It’s been a rewarding experience. I owe Tennessee State University so much to have been put in positions where I did not only use my talent but was given opportunities to work with some very incredible people and administrators to help us achieve so much,” Busby said.

Recounting his years at TSU, Busby, 69, was visibly emotional when he talked about the satisfaction he received when the University gave him his first “big career break” to join the faculty in 1972, not long after earning a Ph.D. in mechanical engineering from the University of Tennessee.

“Although I had a job working for a company briefly after I left UT, I found the opportunity to work at TSU and interact with so many students and other faculty to be an excellent career start,” Busby added.

He talked about many achievements, but for him what stood out the most was the opportunity to head the newly established Center of Excellence, a multidisciplinary research laboratory founded in 1986 within the state-wide Centers of Excellence program to increase the research base of Tennessee, as well as serve as a research resource for faculty and students of TSU.

“The center allowed us to advance in so many areas, collaborate with many national and international scientific and government agencies and institutions, and to develop faculty and students who are considered among the best in the nation,” Busby said.

Busby and Tennessee State University astronomer Greg Henry join Vanderbilt astronomers Douglas Hall and Frank Fekel in March 1989 at the robotic telescope site in the mountains of southern Arizona.  TSU's automated astronomy research program began as a collaborative effort with Vanderbilt astronomers to study a mysterious new class of variable stars with the robotic telescope on the right.  TSU now owns and operates 8 robotic telescopes at the Arizona site. (courtesy photo)
Busby and Tennessee State University astronomer Greg Henry join Vanderbilt astronomers Douglas Hall and Frank Fekel in March 1989 at the robotic telescope site in the mountains of southern Arizona. TSU’s automated astronomy research program began as a collaborative effort with Vanderbilt astronomers to study a mysterious new class of variable stars with the robotic telescope on the right. TSU now owns and operates 8 robotic telescopes at the Arizona site. (courtesy photo)

Under Busby’s watch, the center established an Automated Astronomy Group of faculty, graduate and undergraduate students, researchers, and support staff with automated telescopes, advanced control systems and systems identification, and applied mathematics. The automated astronomy research program began as a collaborative effort with Vanderbilt astronomers to study a mysterious new class of variable stars.  TSU now owns and operates eight robotic telescopes at the Robotic Observatory Center in the Patagonia Mountains near Washington Camp, Arizona.

On Nov. 14, 1999, a team led by TSU astronomer Greg Henry, announced the discovery of a shadow of a planet crossing a distant star. The discovery made national and international news.

“…I want America to know about your enormous contributions to research. I want every American to know that last November, Tennessee State astronomers made the world’s first direct detection of a planet orbiting another star,” then President Bill Clinton announced at the annual National Association for Equal Opportunity in Higher Education Leadership Award Banquet in Washington, D.C., on Feb. 16, 2000.

“That was a crowning moment for the Center of Excellence and the Automated Astronomy Group…all because we had outstanding scientists and people doing what they are good at,” Busby added.

For a mechanical engineer with no specific background in astronomy, bringing the program together with the right people in place, and to achieve such prominence, speak to Busby’s “outstanding leadership and managerial genius,” one colleague said.

“His vision and management style made all the difference,” said Henry, an original member of the Automated Astronomy Group who has been with the University since Busby brought him on nearly 25 years ago.

“His genius was having the vision of what this center would be. He hired the right people, gave them what they needed and allowed them to do their work,” Henry added. “And he takes no credit for it.”

In the 26 years since its establishment, the COE has brought in more than $40 million in external funding through grants, and total faculty publications in refereed and non-refereed journals is nearly 1,300. Student support for an average 41 undergraduate and 10 graduate students per year is about $500,000.

With all of these achievements, no doubt colleagues and administrators see Dr. Busby’s departure as a “huge” vacuum being created at the University.

“Dr. Busby has been an outstanding instructor and researcher at TSU for decades,” said Dr. S. Keith Hargrove, dean of the College of Engineering. “His loyalty and dedication to the university is unwaverable….and his iconic presence will be missed by his colleagues and students.”

In addition to teaching and heading the COE, Busby also served in many other capacities over the years. One of his last roles was serving as interim associate vice president for Research and Sponsored Programs, a position he held until his retirement and the subsequent hiring of a new associate vice president.

The new Associate Vice President, Dr. Lesia L. Crumpton-Young, who worked with Busby for several months before his retirement, described the longtime TSU professor and administrator as providing “outstanding leadership that significantly impacted the research notoriety” of the Center of Excellence in Information Systems.

“Mike Busby has worked tirelessly to grow the research enterprise at TSU and we are truly grateful for his leadership and long-term commitment to the University,” Crumpton-Young said.

As he leaves, Busby said he is very optimistic about the future of the center and the University.

“I am very pleased with the kind of people and administrators we have in place at the institution. We have people who truly care about TSU and who want to take TSU to places it’s never been before,” Busby said.

About retirement, Busby said he is going to stay busy spending more time with his wife of 51 years, and keeping up with an engineering consultancy he has long been involved with, except this time, he will control his own time.

“I am retiring with a great deal of joy,” the Goodlettsville, Tennessee native added.

 

 

 

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.

Teachers Gather at TSU to Take Teaching to the Next Level Through CASE

CASE 1
CASE Institute participants had the opportunity to experience hands-on training, such as soiling sampling. Nearly 50 teachers from around the country gathered at Tennessee State University to participate in two separate CASE Institutes, professional development workshops that provided teachers with training in specific agriculture courses aimed at fostering the best of what is known about student-centered, inquiry-based instruction. (Courtesy photo)

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (TSU News Service) – With the summer almost half over, Tennessee State University and the Curriculum for Agricultural Science Education (CASE), have ensured that more than 20 high school teachers will start this school year confident that it will be their best to date.

Throughout the month of June, nearly 50 teachers gathered from across the country to participate in the CASE Institute—a professional development workshop that provides teachers with training in specific courses—held at the College of Agriculture, Human and Natural Sciences’ new Ag Ed STEM Building on the campus farm in Nashville.

TSU hosted two institutes this summer the introductory level Agriculture, Food and Natural Resources Institute from June 1 through 11, and the higher level Advanced Plant Sciences Institute from June 15 through 25.

Once a teacher has successfully completed the 80 hours of intense professional development at the CASE Institutes, they are certified to teach the specific courses to their students in their home schools.

“This institute provides teachers with first-hand knowledge and experience with a curriculum that fosters the best of what is known about student-centered, inquiry-based instruction,” said Dr. John C. Ricketts, TSU’s Agricultural Education, Leadership and Extension program leader and associate professor. “This is an opportunity to make an effort to effectively integrate core academics and STEM into participants’ respective programs.”

The nine-day workshops have brought together teachers from all across the nation including Washington, New Jersey, Tennessee, Maryland, Missouri, West Virginia, Iowa, Ohio and Kentucky. TSU is the only Historically Black College and Universities (HBCU) serving as an Affiliate Institution for CASE.

“The CASE Institute is an excellent program for agricultural educators that has been found to lead to great student achievement in agricultural education for diverse audiences,” said Dr. Chandra Reddy, dean and director of Research/Administrator of Extension for the College. “We are excited to be able to offer this rigorous program, and honored to have been the institution of choice for those who attended.”

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TSU played host to more than 50 teachers from across the country during the month of June for the CASE Institute workshops designed to provide teachers professional training in specific agriculture courses. TSU President, Dr. Glenda Glover (center) visited the second class that participated in the higher level Advanced Plant Sciences Institute from June 15 through 25. (courtesy photo)
Word about the program and its potential to positively impact educators and their students appears to be spreading. On the last full day of instruction, the TSU CASE Institute played host to the Tennessee Department of Education in the morning followed by a visit from TSU’s President, Dr. Glenda Glover. Additionally, due to its effectiveness, the Metro Nashville Public School system now requires its new hires in agricultural education to complete the program. Four MNPS agricultural educators have completed the program in the last two years.

For more information about CASE visit www.case4learning.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’s Farmer Academy Inspires New Generation of Farmers

Academy Coincides with USDA’s Support for Beginning Farmers and Ranchers

 

Krysta Harden, deputy secretary of Agriculture, addresses members of The College of Agriculture, Human and Natural Sciences, and other stakeholders during her one-day visit to the University January 21. The USDA recently announced new policy changes meant to improve the financial security of new and beginning farmers and ranchers. (Photo by John Cross, TSU Media Relations)
Krysta Harden, deputy secretary of Agriculture, addresses members of The College of Agriculture, Human and Natural Sciences, and other stakeholders during her one-day visit to the University January 21. The USDA recently announced new policy changes meant to improve the financial security of new and beginning farmers and ranchers. (Photo by John Cross, TSU Media Relations)

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (TSU News Service)  – The College of Agriculture, Human and Natural Sciences (CAHNS) Cooperative Extension Program at Tennessee State University began hosting a “New Farmer Academy” June 16 to help inspire a new generation of farmers, ranchers and returning veterans to develop successful small farm enterprises in Tennessee.

The program, which is directed toward owners and potential owners of small acreages who desire information on how to best utilize their land and other resources to produce crops and raise livestock, meets on the third Monday of each month from June to October, with graduation set for November 17.

According to Dr. Latif Lighari, associate dean for Extension, in addition to helping familiarize beginning farmers with the new USDA policies and website, the New Farmer Academy will provide six months of intensive, hands-on training on the practical aspects of running a farm.

“We also have arranged for a mentorship program with existing successful farmers who can provide valuable tips from their own experience,” said Lighari.

The academy coincides with a recent announcement from the U.S. Agriculture Deputy Secretary Krysta Harden speaking about new policy changes meant to “improve the financial security of new and beginning farmers and ranchers,” according to a USDA news release.

In addition to the policy changes, Deputy Secretary Harden, who visited TSU in January, unveiled a new website—www.usda.gov/newfarmers—to provide a convenient resource to help those farmers and ranchers take advantage of these programs.

“New and beginning farmers are the future of American agriculture,” said Deputy Secretary Harden. “The average age of an American farmer is 58 and rising, so we must help new farmers get started if America is going to continue feeding the world and maintain a strong agriculture economy. The new policies announced today will help give beginning farmers the financial security they need to succeed. Our new online tool will provide one-stop shopping for beginning farmers to learn more about accessing USDA services that can help their operations thrive.”

In May, the USDA announced a $6 million award to universities and cooperative state extension services to develop online decision tools and other materials and train experts to educate producers about several key farm bill programs. TSU received $30,000 under this program to educate farmers on how to use the new risk reduction policies and to develop web-based decision tools.

The cost to attend the academy is $150 per person and includes all educational material and a lunch at each session. To register, contact Rhonda Ewing at 615.963.1351 or rewing1@tnstate.edu.  For more information about this program, contact Finis Stribling at 931.375.5301 or fstribling@tnstate.edu.

 

 

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 Extension Summer Intern Program Aims to Inspire Future Educators, Farmers

TSUGroup
The College of Agriculture, Human and Natural Sciences has selected nine student interns for the summer Cooperative Extension Program to help them learn about careers in agriculture while working with agents in the field. Those selected include: (back row, left to right) Dr. Tyrone Miller, assistant professor of Leadership and Organizational Development,  Latetricia Wilson, Kyle Ward, Ciera Scott, George Davis, and Dr. Latif Lighari, associate dean for Extension. (seated left to right) DiJuana Davis, Raynette Johnson, Passion Echols, and Stephon Brisco. (courtesy photo)

 

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (TSU News Service) – Tennessee State University’s College of Agriculture, Human and Natural Sciences Cooperative Extension Program has announced the selection of nine student interns for summer 2014.

The summer extension internship program is designed to help students learn about the Cooperative Extension Program and other careers in agriculture while working with extension agents and other professionals in county offices throughout Tennessee.

“This internship is an excellent opportunity for participants to build their resumes and help improve the lives of Tennesseans over the course of ten weeks, doing everything full-time extension agents do,” said Dr. Latif Lighari, associate dean for Extension. “They’ll get the chance to teach educational programs, visit farms and homes, conduct research, attend 4-H camp, assist with county fairs, help with field days, network with local decision makers and prepare public-facing communication material, all while building the essential leadership, problem-solving, and organization skills that are necessary to succeed in extension or any other career.”

The nine interns selected are:

  • Latetricia Wilson, a senior Child Development major from Memphis, Tennessee, who will intern in Shelby and Fayette Counties;
  • Raynette Johnson, a junior Agricultural Education, Leadership & Extension major from Mumford, Tennessee, who will intern in Haywood County;
  • Ciera Scott, a 2014 Family & Consumer Sciences graduate from Columbus, Ohio, who will intern in Robertson County;
  • Passion Echols, a graduate student in Agricultural Education, Leadership & Extension from Murfreesboro, Tennessee, who will intern in Bedford County;
  • George Davis, a junior Agricultural Sciences major from Memphis, who will intern with the Tennessee Deptartment of Agriculture in Davidson County;
  • Kyle Ward, a junior Agriculture Education & Extension major from Halls, Tennessee, who will intern in Williamson County;
  • DiJuana Davis, a 2014 Agricultural Sciences/Agribusiness graduate from Nashville, who will intern in Davidson County;
  • G. Stephon Brisco Jr., a junior Agricultural Sciences/Agribusiness major from Nashville via Lansing, Michigan, who will intern in Rutherford County; and
  • Ariel Harrell, a 2013 Agricultural Sciences graduate from Covington, Tennessee, who will intern with the Tennessee Department of Agriculture in Davidson County.

“Even though this is our first year offering this program we had a great pool of students to select from,” said Dr. Tyrone Miller, assistant professor of Leadership and Organizational Development and coordinator of the summer internship program. “The selected interns are exceptional, well-rounded students with strong interests in careers in cooperative extension and the agriculture industry. I am very confident that they will represent and showcase the excellent students we have at Tennessee State University and gain valuable job skills in the process.”

At the end of the ten week program, each intern will develop and present a PowerPoint presentation on their internship experience alongside the summer extension interns from the University of Tennessee.

For more information, contact Dr. Tyrone Miller at (615) 963-1843 or tmiller11@tnstate.edu.

 

 

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.

EPA Program to Engage Tennessee State University Students in Community-Based Environmental Health

epa_logoNASHVILLE, Tenn. (TSU News Service) –The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has selected Tennessee State University for a program that will actively engage its students in initiatives that protect local residents from toxic air releases.

A release from the agency named TSU and five other institutions nationwide as “academic partners” for the 2014 Toxic Release Inventory University Challenge. The Challenge is designed to find innovative ways to increase public awareness of industrial release of toxic chemicals in communities around the country.

Dr. David A. Padgett, associate professor of Geography, is TSU’s primary researcher on the TRI project. He was among 11 individuals who submitted applications for the 2014 Challenge.

He said his project, “An Instruction Manual for Visualizing and Analyzing Community-Based Air Quality Sample,” will give students the opportunity to be actively involved in service-learning research aimed at protecting human health and the environment.

“The University will also gain national recognition as a partner with the EPA in the development of a new approach to community-based environmental analysis using geospatial technology tools,” Padgett added.

He said TSU would train student teams in the use of GIS, GPS and TRI mapping tools in air quality assessment, as well as develop bucket brigade air sampling modules for community stakeholders.

Other institutions selected for 2014 TRI Challenge are Drew University, Southern Louisiana University, State University of New York at Pittsburgh, University of California at Los Angeles, and the University of South Carolina.

The selected projects, which are expected to conclude at the end of the 2015 academic year, will kick off in the fall of 2014.

While there is no financial award for the Challenge, academic partners or participating universities receive support from TRI program staff and national recognition by being feature on the TRI University Challenge website.

“Additionally, the EPA will support our faculty and students in presenting the result of our research at a professional conference,” said Padgett. “This experience will hopefully lead to graduate school, grant funding and employment opportunities.”

 

 

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 Remains Key Pipeline to Recruit Metro, Area Teachers

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (TSU News Service) – When Jimmy Arredondo moved to South Korea more than 10 years ago to teach English, the Tennessee State University graduate came away from the experience with a renewed drive and passion to become a certified teacher.

“I finally discovered what I was meant to do,” said Arredondo, who graduated in May with a master’s degree in Curriculum and Instruction. “When I first received my bachelor’s degree in English and history, I had no desire at all to teach. But when I was in South Korea, I felt like this is what I was destined to do and it was something I actually enjoyed.”

Metro-Nashville SchoolsArredondo recently landed a position with Antioch Middle School teaching social studies, and is one of many that have landed jobs with the Metropolitan Nashville Public School System ready to teach thanks to the education and training he received at TSU.

Having no official teacher training, Arredondo decided to attend TSU because of the reputation the University for producing and placing teachers in their chosen career field.

“I had no prior classroom teaching and TSU gave me the skills I needed to be successful,” added Arredondo. “I now feel comfortable when I walk into the classroom on day one and start my teaching career knowing a I have a big toolbox of methods and classroom management skills to draw on.”

For the past two years, Tennessee State University has been one of the top teacher preparation programs in the state, providing exceptionally qualified candidates for teaching positions not only across the state and the southern region, but right here in the University’s backyard with MNPS.

“We have one of the top education programs in the country, and our students have the skills and abilities to teach anywhere across the country due to the teacher preparation they receive here at Tennessee State University,” said Dr. Kimberly King-Jupiter, dean of the College of Education. “The students that choose to remain in the Nashville area have better opportunities with Metropolitan Public School System because of the wonderful partnerships and programs that have been created over the years along with a steady pipeline into the school system.”

TSU has long been a popular spot to recruit top educators into the Nashville school system. During the 2013-2014 school year, of the 636 new hires, 54 were from TSU, second only to MTSU with 56. Vanderbilt University followed in the third spot with 44, along with Lipscomb and Trevecca Nazarene Universities, which tied for the fourth spot with 40 among area institutions pipelining students directly into Metro.

In 2012, 52 of the 553 new hires were from TSU, placing the University in the number one spot, with MTSU coming in a close second with 50 hires. Lipscomb, Trevecca and Vanderbilt came in at third, fourth and fifth respectively.

“We have a great working relationship with Metro, with nearly nine percent of the total new hires with the Metro school system coming from TSU over the past two years,” said Dr. Heraldo Richards, associate dean of the College of Education. “We have a direct pipeline with our students who are highly recruited. In fact, some of our students have been offered positions prior to finishing the program.”

According to Richards, one of the most successful programs is the Ready2Teach training students receive in their senior year. A clinically rich undergraduate teacher residency preparation program, Ready2Teach emphasizes problem-based learning, co-teaching, and performance-based assessment.

Richards explained that Ready2Teach, an initiative unique to the Tennessee Board of Regents schools of which TSU is a part, puts more focus on future teachers learning in-depth content in the subject they plan to teach, applying problem-based learning, and completing a year-long residency with mentor teachers in a P-12 classroom.

“This gives our students the opportunity to stay in the same class the entire year and receive valuable training with the same students and mentor teacher,” added Richards. “It’s very different from past training. When students are placed in the residency program, they are ready and certified to teach after just four years. Our students feel that they are extremely prepared to walk into a classroom and teach immediately.”

Principals in the Metro school system agree, and have been so impressed with the quality of teachers that some have offered positions to students following completion of the program.

Michael Ross, principal at the Caldwell Enhanced Option School in east Nashville said he offered positions to two of the five students that went through the residency program during the 2012-2013 school year.

“The students from TSU that have come through the program at Caldwell have all had a full understanding on how to work with students of diverse backgrounds and learning abilities,” Ross said. “Each student, while going through the residency program, had great insight on how to work with students and meet them where they are in their education level. Both of the students I hired from TSU have done a fantastic job this year and I have been very proud of what they have accomplished. I attribute it all to the training they received at Tennessee State.”

 

 

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.

Tennessee State University Academic Boot Camp Eases Worried Parents’ Concern about Children Going Away for College

CUTLINE GOES HERE
Camp counselor TSU Senior Allen McReynolds (Standing) speaks with Boot Camp students (L-R)Tyler Banks, Morgan Ervin, Cayla Jackson and Tyrone Suggs. Academic Boot Camp and Excel-O-Rate, are combined four-week residential initiatives for incoming freshmen already admitted to TSU, to earn academic credit. (photo by John Cross, TSU Media Relations)

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (TSU News Service) – Stacey Compton is worried.

Like many parents sending their children away for school for the first time, the Aurora, Illinois mother is concerned about how her 18-year-old daughter Sariah Compton will cope when she leaves for college in just a few months.

“She is fresh out of high school and leaving home for the first time ….that’s very unsettling,” said Stacey.

Her worries are slowly subsiding, thanks to two summer enrichment programs at Tennessee State University designed to ensure new students’ successful transition and matriculation through college.

“I am glad she is doing something this summer that is not only keeping her busy but giving her a head start, and helping her to adjust to college life even before school starts,” Stacey added.

And that’s exactly what the TSU programs are intended to achieve, said Dr. Sedric Griffin, director of Admissions and Recruitment.

The programs, Academic Boot Camp and Excel-O-Rate, are combined four-week residential initiatives for incoming freshmen already admitted to TSU, to earn academic credit. They include a rigorous academic and college preparedness program, introduction to college life, public speaking, workshops and technology. Physical and mental development exercises, such as self-discipline, respect for others, good study habits and how to succeed in life, are also key components of the program.

For Tia Geter, from Omaha, Nebraska, who is transitioning to the area, and plans to major in Criminal Justice, the rigorous programs are just what she needs. They help her acclimate, while giving her a more diverse academic and multicultural environment after graduating from “an almost” less diverse high school.

“This is a good way to spend my time instead of staying in bed till about midday and wake up with nothing constructive to do,” said Getter, an honor student, who learned about the program during a college visit. She has a friend at TSU and her father’s job is relocating to the area.

“When I am not in school, I am never up before 11:30 in the morning, but in Boot Camp we are up at 5:30 and ready to start our day,” added Geter, who called her summer camp experience a personal initiative.” I want to succeed in life and I think this is a good start.”

According to program officials, 161 students, recruited from all over the nation, are participating in this year’s Academic Boot Camp and Excel-O-Rate Programs, a 13 percent jump from the previous year.

“By the end of the program, the students will have completed all of TSU’s enrollment processes including financial aid, housing and registration,” said Dr. John Cade, interim vice president for Enrollment Management and Student Support Services. “Many of them are either on full academic scholarships or academic out of state tuition waivers, and as part of the program, they will be monitored through their matriculation to ensure they are receiving the necessary help to make them successful.”

Cade said that the Academic Boot Camp and Excel-O-Rate Programs are part of a three-prong retention and graduation effort, which includes the Take 15 credit per semester initiative and minisemesters which are intended to accelerate student matriculation.

“This combined effort is part of TSU’s retention initiatives in meeting our Complete College Tennessee Act (CCTA) objectives,” Cade added.

With all of these in mind, Stacey Compton can be sure her daughter Sariah made the right choice in selecting TSU.

“I like this program; I am getting help in areas that I need to be strong in to be successful in my college work,” added Sariah, who plans to major in Nursing. She is entering TSU with a 3.5 GPA.

Everett D. Jolly, associate director of Recruitment, and Derek Wilson, admission counselor, are overseeing the summer programs.

 

 

 

 

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 to Host KNOW Hunger SNAP Challenge May 29

Tyson Foods and Elanco Partner with Urban League of Middle Tennessee, TSU Cooperative Extension and Community Food Advocates to Educate Leaders on the Misconceptions of SNAP Benefits

 

KNOW-Hunger-SiteNASHVILLE, Tenn. (TSU News Service) – Area lawmakers will gain first-hand knowledge on what it’s like to try to feed a family for a week on limited resources when they take part in the SNAP Challenge Thursday, May 29 on the Tennessee State University campus.

Hosted by the TSU Cooperative Extension program, the KNOW Hunger Challenge will take place at the ‪Farrell Westbrook Complex (the Barn) from 1 until 5 p.m.

The Challenge, presented by Tyson Foods and Elanco, is an interactive event designed to increase awareness and fight food insecurity by offering education and nutritional opportunities through Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) and firsthand experience with the challenge families face in a budgeted shopping experience. The Urban League of Middle Tennessee is also part of the two-year partnership initiative.

According to Tyson officials, the event is significant because millions of low-income families struggle to provide their families with nutritious meals despite benefits from SNAP, with one in five Tennesseans enrolled in the program.

“Many people can’t fathom feeding a family on $100 per week,” said Jeff Wood, Tyson Foods’ director of Community Relations. “We do this programming to help people understand what SNAP really is, and what it’s not. The experience is very eye opening for most people. Having gone through the challenge myself, I can tell you it’s life changing.”

The SNAP Challenge features teams of legislatures and other elected officials that will be given $100 each to shop for a week’s worth of food for a family of four.  Tennessee State University SNAP-ED educators, as well as hunger advocates from across Tennessee will help teams make their purchases.

The teams are charged with shopping at a local store, then return to the University where their purchases are presented to a panel of judges. The food will be judged on effective use of funds, nutritional value and culinary creativity.

Following the event, the food purchased will be donated to The Nashville Food Project.

“This nation-wide challenge has taken place across the country and serves as a reminder just how difficult it can be to buy food for a family of four when faced with limited resources,” said Rita Fleming, assistant professor of Health Education. “We will have three of our Cooperative Extension SNAP-Ed agents providing assistance on how to make healthy choices on limited funds.”

According to Fleming, the TSU Cooperative Extension program mission is to help educate and provide information to limited resource urban and rural individuals, families, small farmers, and other groups.

“We use a variety of program delivery strategies,” she added, “offering practical and useful research-based programs, resources, and publications in agriculture and natural resources, family & consumer sciences, 4-H youth development, and community resource and economic development.”

This SNAP Challenge is part of KNOW Hunger Nashville, a two-year initiative by Tyson Foods, Urban League of Middle Tennessee and area food advocates to raise awareness of food insecurity and nutrition education. The organizations will also host local health fairs, thought leadership exercises and educational opportunities. The group hosted a health fair with the Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCU) Wellness Project last November and plans to launch a website with Second Harvest Food Bank of Middle Tennessee later this summer that’s designed to help families stretch their food resources further.

Elanco and Tyson Foods created the half-day SNAP Challenge in the spring of 2012. Since that time, 18 groups comprised of more than 450 people have participated.

For more information, contact Fleming at 615.963.2135.

 

 

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.

16 TSU Students Take in the Beautiful European Summer During a Study Abroad Program in Germany

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Some of the Tennessee State University students on a study-abroad program in Germany, take in the sites in Berlin on a bright summer day. (Courtesy Photo)


NASHVILLE, Tenn. (
TSU News Service) – It is summer, classes are over, ….or so you would think. For16 Tennessee State University students, classes just started, but this time, with a mixture of academics, culture and fun in a faraway land. Read the account of their amazing experience, courtesy of TSU Sports Information.

BERLIN – Classes started early Wednesday morning, May 14, for the 16 students attending Tennessee State’s study abroad program in Germany. Among the topics covered was the history of the Berlin Wall, which also happened to be the first destination on the morning’s itinerary.

“The purpose of the trip is to learn about German history and culture,” Associate Dean of Liberal Arts, Dr. Joel Dark, said. “But it is also intended to help the students think about their own identity in the world.”

The group of TSU scholars and representatives boarded a train headed toward Alexander Plaza at the nearby station, and then took the subway to reach what was left of the Wall.

Dr. Dark filled the crowd in with further insight on the construction and eventual destruction of the barrier, before taking the class toward the Capitol Building.

After seeing the Capitol and grabbing lunch, the contingent rode out beyond Berlin to one of its suburbs to see a concentration camp, Sachsenhausen, firsthand.

It seemed everything in Germany was new and different, and it all had a unique story to tell.

“All of the buildings and churches are really pretty,” TSU women’s golfer Natalie Spicer said. “You can see the history just by walking past. I am so excited to see more, take a lot of pictures and learn about the German way of living.”

Outside of the new sights, a handful of students had to rely on their senses of taste and feeling when they ate at the famous Dark Bar on Tuesday night. The restaurant was pitch black to where diners could not even see the food being served to them.

“At first I was skeptical and scared about eating without seeing, but I eventually got the hang of using your fingers to feel around for the utensils. Also, being able to talk to our group while dining helped calm me down,” Spicer said.

Classes will continue on Thursday and the delegation will visit Humboldt University and see the Brandenburg Gate.

Germany Update Day 1: From Nashville to Newark

NEWARK, N.J. – After leaving the Nashville airport at 4 a.m. for a 6 o’clock flight, the 29 Tennessee State representatives arrived in Newark to await their connecting flight to Berlin, Germany.

The small passenger plane, which barely had enough room to fit the traveling party, touched down at 9 a.m., but not before giving passengers glimpses of the Statue of Liberty and MetLife Stadium. The group then went to eat at the airport food court as they waited to board another plane for their final destination in eight hours.

In the meantime, students and administrators played games, slept and read to kill some time before the nine-hour flight.

This page will serve as an update for the athletic department’s study abroad trip to Europe. Be sure to check back for updates every couple of days including pictures of many historical landmarks.

 

 

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.

In Spite of Inclement Weather Threat, TSU Outdoor Spring Commencement Goes on Without a Hitch

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A graduating senior at TSU’s Spring Commencement Ceremony Saturday holds a sign that expresses the sentiments of the more than 1,100 who received their degrees at the program. (Photo by Rick Delahaya, TSU Media Relations)


NASHVILLE, Tenn.
(TSU News Service) – After a brief delay Saturday, Tennessee State University dodged an inclement weather forecast to hold its spring commencement at a packed Hale Stadium.

More than 1,100 undergraduate and graduate students received their degrees in various disciplines under a clear, sunny day, with their names and faces in digital displays projected on two massive jumbotron screens during the outdoor ceremony on the main campus.

Prior to the commencement, students, family members and other invited guests who had arrived early for the planned ceremony in the stadium, took cover in nearby Gentry Center to wait out a rain shower. The crowd went back to the “Hole” after the brief downpour and the commencement went on without a hitch.

“We got exactly what our family came here for,” said Gina Benton, of Dayton, Ohio, responding to an apology from TSU President Glenda Glover about the brief inconvenience posed by the weather. “We came here with about 20 family members to watch my son graduate and that’s exactly what we got. With such a beautiful outcome, the weather was a minor issue.”

Benton’s son, Erik, received his degree in Business Administration with honors.

Tennessee Gov. Bill Haslam, the commencement speaker, apparently not fazed by the weather threat, told the graduates that 55 percent of available jobs in the state would need people with college degrees and the necessary skills to fill those positions.

“Tennessee State University has prepared you to compete for those those jobs and the challenges in life,” Haslam said. “Those challenges will help you handle potential disappointments that come with success.”

The Governor reminded the students to face life with humility and remember those who helped them achieve their higher education goals.

“You did not get to this day by yourself. Thank those who were there with you,” Haslam added.  “Learn to celebrate others. You have been called to play a role that will require your full potential. To fulfill that role will require you to continue to improve yourselves by being lifelong learners.”

Before the conferring of degrees, President Glover presented Gov. Haslam with a special plaque for “accepting our invitation and for inspiring not just these graduates but all of us.”

The President also recognized and presented special awards to this year’s group of Vintagers, former TSU graduates who celebrated their 50th year of graduation from TSU.

Dr. Glover announced an over $55,000 contribution from the group to their alma mater.

“We thank you for your generous contribution and for returning to celebrate with us,” the President said.

 

 

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.