TSU Expert Helps Promote Importance of Mobile Learning in Higher Education at UN International Conferences

Dr. Nicole Kendall
Dr. Nicole Kendall

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (TSU News Service) – A Tennessee State University expert on higher education online training and consulting just returned from Europe where she participated in two mobile-learning conferences sponsored by the United Nations.

Dr. Nicole M. Kendall, an associate professor in the Department of Teaching and Learning, took part in the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization’s Mobile Learning Week in Paris Feb. 16-21, where participants explored how mobile technologies can meet the needs of educators and help them improve their effectiveness.

Under the theme, “Empowering teachers with technology,” the UNESCO Mobile Learning Week, called MLW 2014, considered the benefits and challenges associated with mobile learning, such as ensuring equity of device, online safety, limited mobile –friendly content, and the need for teacher training.

Kendall said the conferences provided a positive spotlight on the global desire to implement what she called m-learning initiatives.

“The U.S. is at an advantage (in m-learning) in that its application of mobile learning is beyond cellular devices and includes tablets, gadgets, and intricate standards to support teaching and curriculum development,” she said. “It (the conference) further positions higher education institutions to model m-learning measures that would attract international and millennial students.”

Following her weeklong stay in Paris, Kendall went onto to Madrid, Spain from Feb. 28 – March 2, for UNESCO’s Mobile Learning 2014 International Conference, where she joined other participants in discussions on how to develop mobile learning research that illustrates developments in the field.

Kendall, a former online mentor and instructor for the Tennessee Board of Regents Online Degree Program, described the Madrid conference as “research-centered on the impact of mobile learning” on teaching and learning.

“It is refreshing to see aspects of legal, culturally social and, instructional commonalities that countries are facing with the use of mobile learning,” Kendall said, adding, “It supports the need for a strategic plan at all levels so that student retention and instructional effectiveness is not compromised.”

Dr. Kendall, who returned home recently, also serves as a senior member of the National Education Association’s Content Quality and Review Board, which recommends online professional development courses to the NEA Academy.

 

 

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.

Bridgestone Director to Lead off TSU Supply Chain Executive Leadership Lecture Series March 17

SupplyChainExLeader-LectureSeries_GardenhireNASHVILLE, Tenn. (TSU News Service) – Global leadership and how to develop a customer-centered focus in industry will be the topic when the Supply Chain Management program in the College of Business at Tennessee State University holds its bi-annual Executive Leadership Lecture Series March 17.

The featured speaker is Robert L. Gardenhire, director of Logistics at Bridgestone Americas Tire Operation. Gardenhire, a longtime Bridgestone executive, oversees transportation, factory warehouses, distribution centers and public storage for finished goods in the U.S., Canada, Mexico and additional export markets.

Prior to the Executive Lecture Series, which begins at 5:15 p.m. in the Avon Williams Campus auditorium, Gardenhire will conduct a one-hour Executive Leadership Roundtable exclusively for MBA students in the new Executive Conference Room beginning at 3:30 p.m. RSVP at lsmith11@tnstate.edu is required to attend.

With the goal to enhance the supply chain curriculum, organizers say the lecture series is aimed to expose students to experts and thought leaders on proven capabilities in leadership that are based on competencies outlined by the SCM Governing Board. The Board is comprised of some of industry’s “most progressive” corporate leaders.

According to Lisa Smith, director of the SCM program, the series emphasizes the following focus areas:

  • Thought Leadership – The ability to make sound and informed decision in using accurate information to understand and resolve issues
  • Result Leadership – Developing a Customer-Centered Focus in meeting and understanding the customer’s needs
  • People Leadership – How to increase commitment through engagement, influence, and communication to inspire others to actively support the organization
  • Personal Leadership – How to demonstrate and manage ethics and compliance

The Executive Leadership Lecture Series is free and open to the public. For more information contact Lisa Smith at (615) 963-7137 or lsmith11@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.

10-Day International Symposium to Pair TSU, Colombian Students in Cultural Immersion Exercises

ODIANASHVILLE (TSU News Service) – For the second year in a roll, the Office of Diversity and International Affairs will host a weeklong symposium on global perspectives and cultural awareness, under the theme “TSU Without Borders.”

The symposium, to be held on the main campus in the Research and Sponsored Programs Building March 8-17, will bring together 10 university students from Colombia, in various disciplines, who will be paired with 10 TSU students on research projects to be presented at the symposium.

According to organizers, the symposium is part of the University’s “cultural immersion initiative” also called CI2, intended to challenge the students through 10 days of intense research, studying, sharing and social activities.

As the second phase of a research project under the Martin Luther King Jr. Fellowship Program, the symposium follows a Jan. 10-19 visit by 10 TSU students to Medellin, Colombia, where they were paired with their South American counterparts on a joint-research project.

“The purpose of their research was to outline the need to consider cross-cultural dialogue about competing conceptions of leadership, creativity and sustainability,” said Mark Brinkley, director of International Education at TSU.

Calling it an innovative collaboration between higher education institutions, Brinkley said the project is aimed to promote academic exchange and collaboration between TSU and Universidad de Antioquia in Colombia.

The South American students, mostly of indigenous Afro-Colombian heritage, are from the University of Antioquia, the National University in Medellin, and the Technological University of Chocó. They were paired according to their gender and research area of interest, according to Brinkley.

As part of their U.S. visit, the Colombian students will tour cultural sites in Memphis, including the Civil Rights Museum, to be sponsored by The Links, historic Peabody Hotel, Beal Street, as well as tour the Gaylord Hotel and the mall at Opry Mills in Nashville.

For more information go to https://www.tnstate.edu/diversity/ or call 615-963-5640.

 

 

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.

From Death Row to Artist…Former Inmate Displays Artwork At Avon Williams Campus Library Feb. 28-April 11

Ndume Olatushani turned to painting as a way to escape the tedium and depression of serving a death sentence. Now a free man living in Nashville, his paintings will be on display at TSU's Avon Williams Campus Library Feb. 28 through April 11.
Ndume Olatushani turned to painting as a way to escape the tedium and depression of serving a death sentence. Now a free man living in Nashville, his paintings will be on display at TSU’s Avon Williams Campus Library Feb. 28 through April 11. (courtesy photo)

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (TSU News Service) – Freedom was only a dream for Ndume Olatushani, a man who spent 28 years behind bars in maximum-security prisons. Wrongly convicted of murder, he spent 20 of those years on death row.

To escape the tedium and depression of life behind bars Olatushani began painting, by turning to canvas to “live outside of prison” as a way of freeing his mind and spirit.

The paintings, on display at the Tennessee State University’s Avon Williams Campus Library Feb. 28 through April 11, demonstrate the products of his incarceration and the will to change his life after hitting rock bottom.

“I was truly a broken man and the lowest I’ve ever been,” said Olatushani, recounting how he began painting following his mother’s death two years into his prison sentence. His mother Moosie, who never wavered in her belief of her son’s innocence, was killed in a car accident that also claimed the life of his 8-year-old niece.

“After my mom’s death, I decided I couldn’t be hurt anymore,” he added. “I started drawing and eventually taught myself to paint. Through my artwork I lived outside of prison and didn’t paint my surroundings, but instead the people from outside the prison walls I would like to meet.”

Born Erskine Johnson in St. Louis, Olatushani’s troubles began Oct. 26, 1983 while celebrating his mother’s birthday with about 30 relatives. While the family was celebrating, nearly 300 miles away in Memphis, a grocer named Joe Belenchi was murdered while working in the supermarket he owned.

Day Dreaming, oil on linen
Day Dreaming, oil on linen

Within several months following the murder, Johnson, who legally changed his name to Ndume (Swahili for masculinity) Olatushani (unifier), was tracked down, charged, convicted and sentenced for the crime—even though he never before set foot in the state of Tennessee. In 1985, at the age of 27, he was sentenced to death.

For nearly three decades, Olatushani spent his time moving from different levels of incarceration, including from Level C – where he spent 23 hours-a-day in forced solitude, with hands and feet shackled during the remaining hour – to Level A, which allowed up to three hours a week for visitations, outdoor time with other convicts in a 12-by-12 cage, and the opportunity to have odd jobs.

In 1991 he started corresponding with a young college student, Anne-Marie Moyes, who had dedicated herself to social justice issues. She began working with Death Penalty Focus, a California-based nonprofit similar to Tennesseans for Alternatives for the Death Penalty. The two met after months of corresponding, and she was so convinced of his innocence, Moyes enrolled in Vanderbilt Law School where she was awarded the law school’s Founder’s Medal – the highest honor bestowed on a single graduate out of every graduating class. The two would spend nearly two decades filing appeals.

Black Man Rises Up Boldly, oil on linen
Black Man Rises Up Boldly, oil on linen

In the meantime, a large international firm in New York decided for the first time to take on a death penalty case and filed appeal after appeal on his behalf. Finally in Dec. 2011, the Tennessee Court of Criminal Appeals overturned Olatushani’s murder conviction due to faulty witness testimony and demanded a new trial. On June 6, 2012, Olatushani walked out of prison after accepting an Alford Plea to avoid potentially serving several more years in the Shelby County Jail awaiting a new trial and taking his chances with another jury. This deal required that he plead guilty to second-degree murder, while, at the same time, allowed him to maintain his innocence. In exchange, he was sentenced to time served and was released.

Today, at age 54, Olatushani is a free man living in Nashville with his now wife, Anne-Marie, and their adopted child. Now just two years shy of being released and starting a new life, he is still painting, growing a small vegetable garden and learning about all the advances that did not exist when he was first incarcerated.

“The only real struggle is trying to get used to all these technological advances that have been made,” he said, listing on his fingers all the inventions that didn’t exist when he went to jail in 1983: computers, cell phones, the Internet.

Olatushani’s art exhibit will be on display at the Avon Williams Campus Library Feb. 28 through April 11 and is free and open to the public. The library is open Monday through Thursday from 9 a.m. to 10 p.m., Friday and Saturday from 9 a.m. to 5:30 p.m., and Sunday noon until 8:30 p.m.

For more information call 615.963.7188.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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.

36th Annual University-Wide Research Symposium set for March 31-April 4

Noted theoretical physicist Dr. Sylvester Gates Jr. to deliver keynote address

 

NASHVILLE (TSU News Service) – Every year, Tennessee State University students present their best works of exploration, research and invention to fellow students, faculty and the community at the Annual University-Wide Research Symposium. Now in its 36th year, the symposium will take place at the University March 31 – April 4.

Since 1979, TSU has held an annual research symposium – a University forum to recognize and commemorate excellence in student and faculty research, largely science, engineering, business and humanities disciplines, and a platform for students conducting hypothesis-driven research to gain exposure as either oral or poster presenters in an evaluative setting.

The symposium serves as a foundation to provide students with authentic experiences in presenting their research before advancing to regional, national and international research symposia; and before beginning early years as professionals in life-long careers and disciplines.

The Symposium is comprised of a week of interdisciplinary presentations by students and faculty members with students seeking competitive awards for their deliberative innovation that showcases the research process from laboratory to solution.

Continually themed “Research: Celebrating Excellence,” the Symposium will be divided into oral presentations and poster presentations. This year, 147 graduate and undergraduate oral and poster presentations are expected to take place, along with 21 faculty oral and poster presentations.

Oral presentations will take place throughout the week in the Research and Sponsored Programs Building, Room 161,163 and 209. Poster presentations will take place in the Jane Elliot Hall Auditorium, Tuesday, April 1 through Thursday, April 3. Judging for poster presentations is scheduled to take place Thursday, April 3 from 9 until 11 a.m. for graduate posters, and 1until 3 p.m. for undergraduate posters.

Noted theoretical physicist and John S. Toll Professor of Physics at the University of Maryland – College Park Dr. Sylvester Gates Jr. will be the featured keynote speaker officially opening the Symposium. The event takes place Monday, March 31 beginning at 2 p.m. in the E.T. Goins Recital Hall, located in the Performing Arts Center on the main campus. The keynote address is free and open to the public.

Other events taking place during the week include:

Monday, March 31 

*Division of Nursing Research Day
7:30 am – 1:00 pm
James E. Farrell – Fred E. Westbrook Building, room 118
Poster Sessions and Awards Ceremony
Luncheon Speaker, Grace S. Smith, LMSW, Program Manager, Meharry Consortium Geriatric Education Center

*Orals – Graduate Engineering I
9 – 11:30 am
Research and Sponsored Programs Building, Room 163

*Orals – Graduate Sciences I
9 am – 12:30 pm
Research and Sponsored Programs Building, Room 209

*Orals – Graduate Education and Health Sciences
9 – 10 am
Research and Sponsored Programs Building, Room 161

*Orals – Preliminary Research: Graduate Engineering
10:30 – 11:15 am
Research and Sponsored Programs Building, Room 161

*Opening Ceremony and Plenary Session
2 pm
E.T. Goins Recital Hall, Performing Arts Center
Symposium Keynote Address: Sylvester James Gates, Ph.D.


Tuesday, April 1

*Orals – Graduate Sciences II
9 am – 12:30 pm
Research and Sponsored Programs Building, Room 163

*Orals – Graduate Engineering II
9 – 11:30 am
Research and Sponsored Programs Building, Room 209

*Orals – Graduate Sciences III
1 – 4:30 pm
Research and Sponsored Programs Building, Room 163

*Orals – Undergraduate Engineering
1– 2:15 pm
Research and Sponsored Programs Building, Room 209

*Psychology Research Day
2:30 – 5:30 pm
James E. Farrell – Fred E. Westbrook Building, room 118
Oral and Poster Sessions and Awards Ceremony
5:30 pm, Guest Speaker, Neil Woodward, Ph.D., Department of Psychiatry, Vanderbilt University School of Medicine


Wednesday, April 2

*Orals – Undergraduate Sciences
9– 11:30 am
Research and Sponsored Programs Building, Room 163

*Orals – Preliminary Research: Graduate Education and Health Sciences
9 – 10 am
Research and Sponsored Programs Building, Room 209

*Orals – Undergraduate Social Sciences
11 – 11:30 am
Research and Sponsored Programs Building, Room 209

 

Thursday, April 3

*Poster Presentations – Faculty, Graduate, and Undergraduate
All posters will be displayed in the Jane Elliott Hall Auditorium, April 1-3

*Poster Judging – Graduate
9 – 11 am

*Engineering Research Day
11:30 am – 1 pm
James E. Farrell – Fred E. Westbrook Building, room 118
Luncheon Speaker, William H. Robinson, Ph.D., Associate Professor of Electrical Engineering, Associate Professor of Computer Engineering, Director of Undergraduate Studies for Computer Engineering, Vanderbilt University

*Poster Judging – Undergraduate
1 – 3 pm

 

Friday, April 4

*Orals – Faculty
9 – 11:15 am
Research and Sponsored Programs Building, Room 163

*Awards Luncheon and Closing Ceremony
Noon – 2 pm
James E. Farrell-Fred E. Westbrook Building, room 118
Luncheon speaker: Mark A. Hardy, Ph.D., TSU Vice President for Academic Affairs.

 

Posters will be displayed in the Jane Elliott Hall Auditorium, April 1-3.

For more information on the Research Symposium, visit www.tnstate.edu/research or contact Nannette Carter Martin, co-chair at 615.963.5827, or Tamara Rogers, co-chair at 615.963.1520.

 

 

 

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 Receives More Than $2.6 Million Grant for Research, Teaching, Extension

Dr. Ahmad Aziz, associate professor of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences, carries on an experiment with graduate assistant Abdul Mujeed Yakubu, in his lab. Dr. Aziz received a teaching grant for his research on bio-energy/biofuel and natural resources. (courtesy photo)
Dr. Ahmad Aziz, associate professor of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences, carries on an experiment with graduate assistant Abdul Mujeed Yakubu, in his lab. Dr. Aziz received a teaching grant for his research on bio-energy/biofuel and natural resources. (courtesy photo)

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (TSU News Service) – Coming on the heels of a soon-to-be dedicated multi-million dollar, state-of-the-art biotechnology center, agricultural research, extension and teaching at Tennessee State University have received a major boost with new funding from the federal government.

On Wednesday, Feb. 26, the University received a $2.6 million grant from the U.S. Department of Agriculture to support capacity-building endeavors.

The amount was part of 76 grants totaling $35 million awarded to 21 Historically Black Colleges and Universities or 1890 institutions to support research, teaching and extension activities through the USDA’s National Institute of Food and Agriculture program.

This achievement for TSU is the result of the success of six grant proposals submitted by faculty members or project directors and their collaborators in the College of Agriculture, Human and Natural Sciences, in addition to funding received for NIFA programs.

In the last four year, TSU has been one of the leading 1890 grantees, usually ranking in the top three spots. This year is no different, with University officials and students expressing their excitement about the institution’s success rate.

“We are quite pleased with the success of our faculty in garnering these USDA funds to build our Ag program,” said Dr. Chandra Reddy, dean of CAHNS. “These funds help to build capacity in new areas of agricultural research, teaching and outreach, as well as help in remodeling and building research facilities.”

Alison Leathers, a graduate student in Agricultural Education, Leadership and Extension from Preston, Minn., described the new funding along with the upcoming biotechnology center as “positives” that will enhance learning in new areas of research and awareness.

“I think the new money and building will certainly help to expand the amount of knowledge and expertise we have in the college by having more labs and more equipment that will help my fellow students and me,” Leathers said.

In announcing the grants Wednesday, Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack said the goal was to build on efforts that foster strong partnerships with the 1890 community, ensure equal access to USDA programs and services, and support educational opportunities for the next generation of farmers and ranchers.

“For nearly 125 years, the 1890 land-grant institutions have played a vital role in ensuring access to higher education and opportunity for underserved communities,” said Secretary Vilsack. “These competitively-awarded grants support high quality research, teaching and Extension activities and support the continued leadership of 1890 institutions in the fields of agriculture, the environment and public health.”

Faculty members (or project directors) who led the proposal submissions that resulted in the research, teaching and Extension grant awards, and their research focus are:

  • Dr. Karla Addesso, assistant professor of Chemical Ecology – Sustainable agriculture – $299,751 (Research)
  • Dr. Dafeng Hui, assistant professor of Biological Sciences – Bio-energy/biofuel and natural resources; Global climate change – $299,874 (Research)
  • Dr. Fur-Chi Chen, associate professor of Food Science – Food Safety – $299,999 (Research)
  • Dr. George Smith, assistant professor of Landscape Architecture – Water quality – $249,797 (Extension)
  • Dr. Janice Emerson, associate professor and director of the Center for Prevention Research – Childhood Obesity – $248,886 (Extension)
  • Dr. Ahmad Aziz, associate professor of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences – Bio-energy/biofuel and natural resources – $150,000 (Teaching)

Additionally, TSU received about $1.1 million NIFA award through the 1890 Facilities Grant Program, with Dr. Reddy as the PI. The fund will be used to remodel the Ferrell Westbrook Building with new laboratories for recently hired agricultural faculty.

 

 

 

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.

Two TSU Engineering Majors Capture Top Awards at National STEM Conference

Waled Tayib, a senior, left, received second place award, while Daniel Henke, a junior, took first place in the undergraduate oral and poster presentation at the Emerging Research National Conference in Washington, D.C.  The students are both Electrical and Computer Engineering majors. (courtesy photo)
Waled Tayib, a senior, left, received second place award, while Daniel Henke, a junior, took first place in the undergraduate oral and poster presentation at the Emerging Research National Conference in Washington, D.C. The students are both Electrical and Computer Engineering majors. (courtesy photo)

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (TSU News Service) – Tennessee State University students continue to make their mark in science, technology, engineering and mathematics on the national scene in a big way.

At the just ended 2014 Emerging Research National Conference in STEM held in Washington, D.C., two Electrical and Computer Engineering majors captured top awards for research presentations.

Daniel Henke, a junior, received first place award, while Waled Tayib, a senior, took second place in the undergraduate oral and poster presentation.

Henke received his award in the Technology and Engineering category, while Tayib’s award was in Information Systems. Cyber security, with emphases on cyber physical system and smartphone security, was the focus of their research projects.

Dr. S. Keith Hargrove, dean of the College of Engineering, attributed the success of the two TSU students to the college’s continued emphasis on research, pointing to evidence that suggests that students engaged in research as undergraduates have a higher graduation rate.

“I strongly encourage all students, but certainly our best students, to become engaged in research as undergraduates,” Hargrove said.  “The experience helps relate their curriculum content, enhances the relationship with faculty, and develops key career skills for marketability and professional development.”

The three-day ERN conference, hosted by the American Association for the Advancement of Science, and the National Science Foundation Division of Human Resource Development, brought together more than 200 participants from across the country.

Aimed at college and university undergraduate and graduate students who participate in programs funded by the NSF and the HRD Unit, the conference was intended to enhance participants’ science communication skills, as well as help them better understand how to prepare for STEM careers in a global workforce.

According to Hargrove, the TSU students presented research on projects being conducted at the College of Engineering, funded by NSF HBCU-UP Targeted Infusion and Research Initiation Awards.

Dr. Sachin Shetty, assistant professor of Electrical and Computer Engineering, and the lead on the cyber security research at TSU, is the advisor for Henke and Tayib, Hargrove said.

“The cyber security research efforts at TSU have received significant support from NSF-HRD. This conference provided a platform for the students working on cyber security research projects to showcase their research efforts to a large audience of students and faculty from various institutions. The feedback from the students and faculty was immensely helpful in improving the quality of their research work,” Hargrove 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.

Affordable Care Act: TSU Joins Push to Step Up Numbers with Enrollment Fair March 1

Image-Affordable-Care-Act-logo-generic copyNASHVILLE, Tenn. (TSU News Service) – Uninsured and don’t know where to look?

Tennessee State University will host an Affordable Care Act Enrollment Fair on Saturday, March 1 from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m., on the main campus in Kean Hall.

The fair, sponsored by the White House Initiative on HBCUs, Get Covered America and TSU, will offer participants the opportunity to speak to enrollment specialists, and ask questions regarding current healthcare issues.

Also, health care consultants will be available to sign up individuals for the Affordable Health Care program. The event is free and open to the public.

The opportunity to obtain affordable care could not have come at a better time for many Tennesseans. With more than 800,000 uninsured in the state, the enrollment fair is part of the push to increase the number of insured before the enrollment period ends March 31.

“In Tennessee, we like to see as many consumers enrolled as possible,” Pamela Roshell, the regional director for the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, told the Tennessean in a recent article. “Of course, there are over 800,000 uninsured in Tennessee. So we want to see every person who is uninsured enrolled.”

The Affordable Care Act offers many uninsured and underinsured individuals the opportunity to obtain free or low-cost health insurance, according to fair organizers.

Those coming to enroll in a health care plan should bring the following documents:

▪   Proof of Citizenship or Immigration Status/Legal Residency (SSN, Passport, Immigration document status number)

▪   State Residency (Driver’s License, or utility bill)

▪   Income for all family members (W-2 forms, pay stubs or proof of unemployment)

▪   Current health insurance (policy numbers for any current health insurance)

Parking will available across from Kean Hall. Enter the building through the door with the U.S. Air Force airplane.

To RSVP for the March 1 enrollment fair, please sign up at https://getcoveredamerica.org/events/rsvp/4jlqs.

 

 

 

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 Media Students Win Sixteen Awards at Regional Conference

Dept of CommNASHVILLE, Tenn. (TSU News Service) – A recent Tennessee State University graduate has received top journalism awards during the Southeast Journalism Conference convention in Lafayette, La. The awards, chosen from 440 qualified entries from 35 universities, were announced Friday, Feb. 21 at the University of Louisiana, and represent the best journalism students in broadcast, print and online news in the collegiate ranks.

Kelli Volk, a 2013 Communications major, received second place in the Best Radio News and Feature Reporter category, and fifth place in the Best College Audio News program. Volk now works for KXMC-TV 13 as an assignments reporter, the local CBS affiliate in her hometown of Minot, N.D.

Other TSU students receiving awards in the individual categories included:

*3rd place – Best Multimedia Journalist: Alicia Bailey
*3rd place – Best Television Journalist: Chantell Copeland
*4th place – Best Radio Hard News Reporter: Brandi Giles
*5th place – Best Radio Journalist: Chantell Copeland
*6th place – Best Magazine Writer – Ce’Dra Jackson
*6th place – Best Opinion-Editorial Writer: Patrick Lewis
*6th place – Best Television News Feature Reporter: Quinn Panganiban
*6th place – Best Journalism Research Paper: Jer’Mykeal McCoy
*8th place – Best Advertising Staff Member: Ashli Beverley
*10th place – Best Magazine Page Layout Designer: Brittney Bodden

The college categories included TSU winning:

*3rd place – Best Public Service Journalism: LaToya Pickett
*4th place – Best College TV Station (TSU television newscast)
*5th place – Best College Audio News Program: Kelli Volk
*8th place – Best College Video News Program: Blue Sapphire awards show
*Tied 9th place – Best College Newspaper: TSU Meter

According to Dr. Terry Likes, Chair of the Department of Communications, this is a testament to the commitment to excellence of students, faculty and the administration. Likes notes the Department’s concentrated effort to update its curriculum, hire the best faculty and staff, and improve its facilities including the opening of its Center for Media Arts and Production.

“Now we are beginning to shine and show the rest of the region that we can compete with the best in college journalism,” said Likes. “In 2012 we won one award. We took home four awards in 2013. This year we took another big step forward.”

The Southeast Journalism Conference is a vibrant learning community of journalists honing their craft through professional development and the Best of the South Collegiate Journalism Competition. An organization comprised of nearly 50 member colleges and universities in Alabama, Arkansas, Florida, Georgia, Louisiana, Mississippi and Tennessee, SEJC was created to encourage greater interest in student journalism and to form closer ties among journalism schools in the Southeast United States.

The Best of the South competition recognizes individual student journalists and university publications. The competition consists of 23 individual and eight university categories.

Overall, 169 students from 34 universities were ranked in the 30 “Best of the South” categories. The SEJC consists of 51 member universities in Alabama, Arkansas, Florida, Georgia, Louisiana, and Tennessee.

The University of Mississippi led all schools with 19 awards, followed by Tennessee State University with 17, and The University of Alabama and Georgia State University tied with 16 each. Others with students in the final rankings included: Troy University (13 awards); University of Louisiana at Lafayette (12); Georgia College and State University (10); Samford University (11); Southeastern Louisiana University (9); Lipscomb University (9); University of Tennessee at Martin (8); Louisiana Tech University (6); Florida A&M University (6); Mississippi State University (5); University of Memphis (5); Austin Peay State University (5); Arkansas State University (5); Grambling State University (5); University of South Alabama (5); Nicholls State University (5); University of North Alabama (5); University of West Alabama (5);  University of West Florida (4);  Union University (4); University of Louisiana at Monroe (4);  University of Alabama at Birmingham (4);  Harding University (4);  Belmont University (3);  Middle Tennessee State University (2);  Mississippi College (1);  Xavier University (1);  University of Tennessee (1); University of Louisiana at Shreveport (1); and Arkansas Tech University (1).

 

 

 

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.

Striking a Chord: TSU Student Carves Unique Guitar Out of Native Tennessee Wood

Brian Allen, a senior Commercial Music student at TSU, shows off the bass guitar he built as a senior project using the seven native woods of Tennessee. (photo by Rick DelaHaya, TSU Media Relations)
Brian Allen, a senior Commercial Music student at TSU, shows off the bass guitar he built as a senior project using the seven native woods of Tennessee. (photo by Rick DelaHaya, TSU Media Relations)

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (TSU News Service) – Growing up, Brian Allen would spend countless hours with his father in their small shop tinkering with electronics or learning the basics of wood-working tools. He loved working with his hands, and the Commercial Music major was soon rebuilding and refinishing drum sets and guitars.

It wasn’t long after Allen began playing bass guitar at Tennessee State University that the 23-year old decided he could build one of his own. And it wouldn’t be just any bass guitar. It would be one that incorporated his love of working with native woods of Tennessee.

It all started in high school when Allen’s band director gave him a set of drums to refinish. He completely removed the wrap from the shells, and refinished and stained the wood underneath.

“I enjoy the process of taking things apart to see if I can put them back together while improving them,” said Allen. “I love bringing back to life what other people discard using basic tools.”

A musician for the better part of 10 years, Allen plays percussion and bass guitar, and, he added, dabbles in beginner guitar. He soon made a decision to put his skills to the test and try to refinish his first guitar. Walking into the local Goodwill store, he left with a low-end 12-string Kay vintage acoustic guitar he purchased for $140 to see what he could do by “playing around with it.”

“It was difficult, to say the least,” Allen joked. “It was really harder than I thought to disassemble and put back together. The body was in pretty bad shape and a little warped.”

Using basic tools, Allen changes out one of the electric capacitors in the bass guitar he built. The guitar build, which started out as a rough sketch on paper, took more than two-and-a-half months to create. (photo by Rick DelaHaya, TSU Media Relations)
Using basic tools, Allen changes out one of the electric capacitors in the bass guitar he built. The guitar build, which started out as a rough sketch on paper, took more than two-and-a-half months to create. (photo by Rick DelaHaya, TSU Media Relations)

After sanding to bare wood, Allen set about building a new bridge out of Honduran rosewood, something that he had never done before but a skill that would come in handy for future projects. Allen estimates he has nearly 100 hours in the refinish, but it taught him the basics of guitar building and he was ready to tackle his next project. After learning basic repairs and building a lot of confidence, Allen decided to build his own bass guitar.

“I figured I could build on my skills and create something that no one else has ever built,” he said.

After much research and on the advice of a close friend, Allen decided he would pay homage to his home state by building the guitar out of the seven native woods of Tennessee ( Red and White Oak, Poplar, Pine, Cherry, Black Walnut and Maple).

“My mom has a rocking chair that served as the inspiration for the body,” Allen said. “A friend suggested I use the same hard wood as the chair and build it in the shape of the state of Tennessee.”

The first design was drawn on a simple white board in his kitchen and quickly morphed into a more elaborate design. Using simple algebra, Allen and his friend, an engineering student also attending TSU, decided the length of the guitar should be 29 inches, proportional with the length of the state at 429 miles.

He cut the different woods into 1 3/8 inch strips, glued them together and cut to create the shape of the state. After multiple coats of a protective finish, he installed the neck he got from an old bass guitar. The build was finished after he installed the electronic components.

“This build really kept me on my toes,” he added. “It was both awesome and a little scary building the bass this being my first time attempting anything like this. The plans changed a few times, as we hit some snags along the way, but in the end I think it is a guitar that I can be very proud of.”

After two-and-a half months of work, the guitar, the only one built in the shape of the state of Tennessee to his knowledge, was ready to make its debut not only in the classroom, but also as his senior project. That is when people started to take notice of his creation, Allen said.

Dr. Mark Crawford, associate professor and coordinator of the commercial music program, helped grade the project, and remembers that put in the hands of a musician such as Allen, it was an exciting project because he had the tools to create something “awesome.” Like many artistic people, in addition to Allen’s musical abilities, Crawford said, he has other creative skills. In his case, it includes working with his hands.

“He has an innate ability to fix things or build things, all which require creative problem-solving skills,” said Crawford. “I was aware of this when Brian enrolled in his Senior Project course. He approached me with the novel idea of building a bass guitar in the shape of Tennessee, and I decided this would probably be the best kind of project for him. Once he finished the bass, he used it as he performed with the Commercial Music Ensemble. Through the groups’ travel, Allen’s guitar was seen in four different states, including audiences at the BB King Museum, Holiday World Theme Park, Nashville Sounds baseball games, Nashville Shores and other venues.”

Just as impressed was Dr. Bob Elliott, head of the Music Department, who thought the guitar was “an excellent example of a boutique build” and an indication of the type of work taking place in the Commercial Ensemble program.

“Brian has an excellent future ahead of him,” said Elliott. “Our program is designed to not only help the students learn how to play music but also how to find a niche in the music industry. Nashville is full of jobs that are not only in the music industry, but those that support it. Should Brian decide to pursue a career in instrument repair or the building of one-of-a kind instruments, his training at TSU and his musical background will serve him well.”

So what’s next for this budding guitar builder? Plans are already in the works for another bass guitar made out of Mexican Purple Heart wood with the neck fashioned from Madagascar rosewood. It will be, Allen said, one of the most exotic builds he has ever attempted.

But even more than building guitars, he is also looking forward to graduation this spring so he can start his career, either playing music or building guitars, or attending Luthier school for guitar building.

“My ultimate goal is to hopefully get on with a company such as Gibson, and learn guitar building from the ground up,” Allen said. “Then I’ll take what I’ve learned not only at TSU but whatever company I work at and turn that into possibly a custom-guitar building business or repair shop.”

 

 

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.