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TSU awarded $2 million job placement grant for students

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (TSU News Service) -Tennessee State University graduates look to have an advantage entering the workforce due to a $2 million career development grant from the United Negro College Fund.

Staff with the university’s career development center believe the funding will give them the tools to prepare and ultimately help TSU graduates secure employment immediately.

“We want to make sure that when they graduate, they’ll have jobs,” said Tina Reed, associate director of TSU’s Career Development Center.

A number of students who graduated from TSU in May had jobs waiting for them. Most of them credited faculty at TSU and programs like the university’s Career Center with motivating them and providing the tools they needed to not only get jobs, but be successful.

One of those students was 24-year-old Cametria Weatherspoon, an electrical engineering major from Memphis, Tennessee, who is now working in programming at Lockheed Martin’s Space Systems Company in Littleton, Colorado.

“Having a job after I graduate is a blessing,” she said.

Besides TSU, UNCF also awarded a $2 million grant to Morgan State University and Norfolk State University.

Each year, UNCF awards more than 10,000 students scholarships worth more than $100 million. It provides financial support to 37 historically black colleges and universities.

 

Department of Media Relations

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

About Tennessee State University

With more than 9,000 students, Tennessee State University is Nashville’s only public university, and is a comprehensive, urban, co-educational, land-grant university offering 38 undergraduate, 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 awarded $2 million grant from UNCF for student job placement improvements

By K. Dawn Rutledge

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (TSU News Service) – Tennessee State University has been awarded a $2 million grant as part of the United Negro College Fund® Career Pathways Initiative.

careerpathwayslogo800hero2The pilot program, made possible through $35.3 million in funding by the Lilly Endowment Inc., will enable selected historically black colleges and universities (HBCUs) and predominately black institutions (PBIs) to address social and economic issues of minority graduation, unemployment and underemployment.

TSU will use the money to enhance its student career development initiatives.

“The UNCF Career Pathways Initiative Grant will give TSU the capacity to better leverage strategic partnerships between our faculty, staff, employers, entrepreneurs and alumni to impact student career exploration, readiness and access,” said Eloise Abernathy Alexis, TSU’s associate vice president for Institutional Advancement.

UNCF launched CPI in December 2016 through a rigorous and competitive multi-phased grant process that targeted 87 eligible public and private HBCUs and PBIs. In the first phase, UNCF made planning grants to 30 institutions. In the final phase, UNCF chose 24 colleges and universities for implementation grants. Of those schools, 15 will receive awards ranging from $1 million to $1.5 million. Nine of the institutions have been selected for three cluster grants, and will receive up to $6 million to collaborate to achieve shared outcomes.

“These colleges and universities show promise in significantly addressing the urgent challenges facing African-American college students and graduates,” said Dr. Michael L. Lomax, UNCF president and CEO.

Tennessee State is among the cluster recipients working in partnership with Morgan State University and Norfolk State University on a joint effort incorporating learning activities, internship exchanges, and linking students through employer clusters, among other initiatives.

“As we implement a framework to increase career outcomes and opportunities for TSU students, we will add to the national body of knowledge on career pathways, within the context of public, historically black colleges and universities, as part of our cluster engagement with Morgan State University and Norfolk State University,” Alexis 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.

Grant from United Negro College Fund to enhance TSU’s student career development initiatives

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (TSU News Service) – Tennessee State University is using a $150,000 grant from the United Negro College Fund to improve job placement outcome for graduates.

The university was one of 30 historically black colleges and universities that recently received the grant made possible through funding by the Lilly Endowment, Inc, which has committed $50 million for UNCF to launch the UNCF Career Pathways Initiative.

TSU will use the money to enhance its student career development initiatives.

“As the nation focuses on its capacity to address the current and projected needs for a more educated, better trained and diverse workforce, TSU is poised to confirm our position as a significant source of premier employee and entrepreneurial talent,” TSU President Glenda Glover said. “This funding will allow us to focus on a campus-wide career planning and development initiative that will ensure that even more of our students are exposed to various career and employment options.”

Kierston Moorer and Tyler Kinloch, both of whom graduated from TSU on May 7, said the university’s Career Development Center has done a good job preparing them for the workforce.

“I’ve been involved with this center since my freshman year,” said Moorer, a computer science major who is taking a job at IBM as a software engineer-technical support in Raleigh, North Carolina. “The center set up a mock interview for me, guided me with my resume and everything else. They are very proactive and very encouraging.”

Kinloch, who interned with Alcoa, Inc., last year, has been hired by the company as an industrial engineer. He said the Career Development Center “enhanced my ability to prepare for my career.”

“Being able to connect with the Career Development Center and taking advantage of all the services they provide – resume building, printing business cards, mock interviews, critiques – has helped to prepare me for the real world,” said Kinloch, who graduated with a degree in Aeronautical and Industrial Technology.

Eloise Abernathy Alexis, associate vice president for Institutional Advancement at TSU, said the funding is intended to integrate and institutionalize existing and new career development programs, partnerships and principles under four key priority areas, including curriculum, coaching, concepts and connection.

For instance, she said one program the funding will benefit is Backpacks to Briefcases: A Social Media Platform Integrating Career Curriculum, Coaching, Concepts and Connections.

“Our students represent a diverse population of individuals seeking to acquire the academic credentials, training and experience required to embark upon pertinent career opportunities, innovative startups and civic service,” she said. “We must ensure that current TSU students have practical and relevant career preparation as a continuum of TSU’s track record of success after graduation.”

Bertina Reed-Hewett, director of the Career Development Center, agreed.

“We don’t want students to graduate with a mediocre job, we want them to have gainful employment,” she 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, 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.