TSU career fair success for students 

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (TSU News Service) – Tennessee State University students were dressed for success for the 2023 Spring Career Fair, hoping to secure employment after graduation. Approximately 750 TSU students attended the event with nearly 200 employers. Students met with potential employers and left with more knowledge about internships and job market opportunities.

Jea’Lon Davis, a senior from Jackson, Mississippi, who is studying health sciences, said he enjoyed speaking with the wide variety of employers, with hopes of career opportunities this Fall post-graduation. “This is a good thing for our students to explore what opportunities are out there,” Davis said. “You never know who you will bump into at these career fairs. This is an opportunity of a lifetime.”

TSU senior Jea’Lon Davis speaks with a potential employer from Texas, Coordinator of Recruitment & Retention Dr. Kishawna Wiggins, during the 2023 Spring Career Fair. (Photo by John Cooper)

Davis spoke with employers who notified him about summer internships to apply for as he looks forward to becoming a sports nutritionist.

The fair included representatives from government agencies, aerospace, banking, engineering, healthcare, and several other industries.

“We had a good turnout of employers who were actively seeking to hire our students for internships and full-time employment,” said Angela Davis, the Assistant Director of the Career Development Center.

“We hope that students received  opportunities on the spot, as they did last year. We also hope that our freshman that attended had the experience of networking and interviewing with employers in preparation for their sophomore year,” she added.

The students took advantage of meeting employers who set up tables and displays in the Gentry Center Complex to network and showcase career and employment opportunities.

TSU freshman Paradise Jenkins speaks with employers during the 2023 career fair (Photo by John Cooper)

While seniors were there for current career development, freshman like Paradise Jenkins and Emmanuel Coleman stopped by to practice networking skills and gain exposure. “I came because I wanted to see what experience and opportunities I would be able to have in the near future,” Jenkins said, who is a Dallas native studying criminal justice.

Coleman, a business administration major from Detroit, said the career fair can broaden student’s horizons. “It’s important for freshmen to see the opportunities that they can come across even as a first-year student. Even if you don’t get an internship, these companies still see and hear you.”

TSU freshman Emmanuel Coleman says its important for students to see the opportunities available at the career fairs even as first-year students. (Photo by John Cooper)

Bank of America (BOA) was one of several returning employers for the career fair. BOA recently contributed $1 million to the University as part of an initiative to help students finish college and find employment in a competitive workforce.

Dontia Brown, the Vice President of Diversity and Campus Strategy Recruiting for BOA, said it was great to return to TSU after hiring students last Fall on the spot.

“We met with a lot of them during the Fall career fair then hired them into full-time programs,” Brown said, noting that the company had more full-time hires than interns last semester. This time, Brown said she met many freshmen who were eager to work.

“Meeting a lot of freshmen has been great, they have been super engaged early on. We have opportunities that are open for students going into their sophomore year, so this is the perfect time for them to learn about what BOA has to offer.”

Dontia Brown, the Vice President of Diversity and Campus Strategy Recruiting for Bank of America, speaks with a TSU student about internship and job opportunity. (Photo by John Cooper)

TSU graduate Iyana Clemente was excited to see familiar faces at her alma mater in her role as an employer. Clemente received a degree in aeronautical and industrial technology in 2021 and works for the Federal Aviation Administration. “Giving back to HBCUs is extremely important,” Clemente said. “Being able to see students that I was on campus with, being able to give back to them is a great opportunity for me.” 

If you are a prospective employer or TSU student looking for more information about the TSU Career Services Department, visit https://www.tnstate.edu/careers/ .

TSU advances to Honda Campus All-star challenge national championship 

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (TSU News Service) – The Tennessee State University  Honda Campus All‐Star Team is headed to the National Championship, with a chance to win the title and a $75,000 institutional grant from the motor company. The Honda Campus All-Star Championship (HCASC) consists of four‐student teams facing off in head‐to‐head competition, quickly answering questions about history, science, literature, religion, math, the arts, pop culture, and sports.

This is the 26th year TSU has participated in the Honda Campus All‐Star Challenge, a competition that consists of 32 HBCU teams vying for the national title. This year’s campaign competition is April 17 in Torrance, California.

From left to right: Tyler Vazquez, Morgan Gill, John Miglietta (coach), Kelley Zumwalt, Cameron Malone are headed to the national championship in California. (Photo submitted)

The TSU scholars are  Cameron Malone, the team’s captain who is a junior majoring in Electrical Engineering from Oak Ridge, TN, Kelley Zumwalt a senior majoring in History and Political Sciences from Nashville, TN, Morgan Gill, a sophomore majoring in Urban Studies/ Pre Law from Stockbridge, GA, and Tyler Vazquez a sophomore majoring in Biology and Pre‐Med from Winston Salem, NC.

Malone said the scholars made it to the playoffs last year, but are excited about qualifying for the national tournament this time. “We have a really good chance to win it all this year,” Malone said.

“The actual teamwork involved in our team sets us apart. We have confidence in our members when they are answering questions.”

The team coach is TSU Professor of Political Science, Dr. John Miglietta. “TSU has won $193,500 in cumulative grant money since the inception of the program,” Miglietta said. “The team and I are looking forward to traveling to Torrance, California, for the National Championship Tournament. I greatly appreciate the opportunity that American Honda provides to showcase the academic achievement at historically Black colleges and universities.”

TSU earned the bid to the national competition after its second-place finish at the qualifying round, in early March at Spelman College in Atlanta, Georgia. The university won the National Championship in 2007. 

This year’s HCASC theme is “Friends for Life,” as the corporation encourages the students to network, and build friendships that last a lifetime. The tournament culminates with the final eight teams playing each other April 17th at the American Honda headquarters. The competition will be streamed April 20‐21 on www.hcasc.com.

About Honda and Historically Black Colleges and Universities

For over 30 years, Honda has supported the success and dreams of Historically Black College and University (HBCU) students through initiatives including the Honda Campus All‐Star Challenge and Honda Battle of the Bands. These programs provide unforgettable experiences and opportunities for HBCU students, including meeting and networking with peers from other HBCU schools. Honda has impacted the lives of more than 200,000 students and awarded over $14 million in grants in support of HBCU education programs and facilities improvements.

Tennessee State University celebrates Women’s History Month with gratitude

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (TSU News Service) –Women’s History Month is celebrated in March every year to recognize and honor the contributions that women have made in society throughout history. Tennessee State University honors its women with gratitude for their historic impact and achievements accomplished dating back to 1912.

TSU’s Women’s Center’s mission is to provide vital services that address needs by hosting programs and workshops that speak to the well-being of the TSU woman.

This month represents acknowledgement of previous and current contributions of women working towards a more equitable society.

From multi-media mogul Oprah Winfrey, who is one of the richest self-made women in America, to the University’s first-ever sitting female president Dr. Glenda Glover, who is one of two African American women to hold the Ph.D-CPA-JD combination in the nation, to Wilma Rudolph who became the first American woman to win three gold medals in one Olympics.

As an official member of the TSU Alumni Family, Vice President Kamala Harris joins President Glenda Glover, and University officials for the University Alma Mater song to end a historic commencement in May 2022. (Photo submitted)

TSU has a variety of distinguished women with many accolades.    

“There are so many amazing women at Tennessee State University,” said Seanne Wilson, who has served as the director of the University’s Women’s Center since 2015. Wilson said many of TSU’s alumna paved the way for Black women in Nashville and beyond. “Often times we are overlooked,” Wilson said. “We’ve never had the shine we deserve. Now women are starting to be seen and we are operating in power.”

Wilson knew she wanted to be a part of the efforts to create a tranquil environment for female students on campus when she became the director.

TSU students during the 2022 annual Women of Legend and Merit Awards, which recognizes the achievements of women.

TSU’s Women’s Center’s mission is to provide vital and comprehensive services that address needs by hosting programs and workshops that speak to the emotional, intellectual, physical, and financial well-being of the TSU woman.

Something that Tamar Williams, who is a student ambassador for the center, said she appreciates. “It is extremely important for TSU to have a Women’s Center because women should have a safe space to be authentically themselves.” Williams, a sophomore studying mass communications, expressed how important it is to celebrate women not only during the month of March but year-round.

TSU students Carla Pulliam and Tamar Williams during a table top event last semester for the Women’s Center

“Women’s History Month is highlighting all women who have done extraordinary things,” Williams said. “Black women are visionaries that push the envelope every time and I think this month really does showcase that.”

Faith Ware, who is also a student ambassador for the Women’s Center, said she stumbled across the center her freshman year and never looked back. “You guys welcomed me in, and I haven’t left,” Ware smiled as she spoke to Ms. Wilson and other students in the center. “The environment gets better and better every year. It’s a safe space and a lot of help is offered here.”

Faith Ware

Gabrielle Mosby, a sophomore who serves as the center’s Vice President, told the University that this month is an expression of women. “The light is on us to showcase our beauty, talent, and excellence.” Mosby said distinguished women of the University have already set the tone for her after college. Along with Dr. Glover, she noted Dr. Tasha Andrews-Carson as an ‘amazing expression.’ Dr. Andrews-Carson serves as the assistant vice president of First Year Students and was a speaker during last year’s women’s conference, something that Mosby and Williams both said resonated with them.

Gabrielle Mosby

Williams also noted how the student body has campus leaders like Miss TSU who help embrace her authentic self.

Sa’Mariah Harding, a senior from Indiana currently serving as the 93rd Miss TSU, said she is proud to be a woman setting examples while serving the student body and appreciates the support from fellow female Tigers.

“They may have not all known me personally, but the love and togetherness that they had by wrapping their arms around me at a time that I felt like I couldn’t stand on my own, gave me more hope and ammunition that I never knew I could have until they stood beside me, hand and hand,” Harding said. “I love the women on Tennessee State University’s campus, and they are the reason that I continue to fight every day.”

93rd Miss TSU Sa’Mariah Harding

From the annual Women of Legend and Merritt event to the Women’s Center Women’s Conference, the University celebrates its women with several events not only in March, but throughout the entire school year.

Here is a list of 16 notable women in TSU history whose stories highlight their legacy and commitment to excellence.  

TSU recognizes the best and brightest, nearly 3,000 students celebrated during honors convocation 

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (TSU News Service) – Tennessee State University honored nearly 3,000 students, recognizing the best and brightest at its 2023 Spring Honors Convocation, which is a ceremony that  highlights academic rigor.

Among the convocation honorees were 2,974 Dean’s List students who maintained a grade point average of 3.0 or higher and 483 President’s List scholars who maintained a 4.0 GPA and received medallions.

TSU President Dr. Glenda Glover, left, the Highest Honors Senior Award recipient Jae Walls, center, and Dean of the Honors College Dr. Coreen Jackson, during the 10th annual spring honors convocation. (Photo by Aaron Grayson) 

This year the Dr. McDonald Williams Highest Honors Senior Award recipient was Jae Walls, a presidential scholar from Atlanta, Georgia, who is one of the two students that were selected for the American Heart Association HBCU Scholars Program.

Walls is a junior studying biology who said she was proud of her award at the honors convocation. She noted how excited she was about the event being held in-person for the first time since the pandemic. 

“I am excited because everyone has been so busy at college, so I think this is a great opportunity to celebrate our academic achievements together,” Walls said. She noted that 2,974 students making the Dean’s List just shows what kind of talent TSU produces.

“It shows how intelligent students here at TSU are and how they can work through these hard classes. It is important to have events like this because it allows TSU to showcase how great the students are.”

Deja Story and Madison Taylor are two TSU freshman being recognized as Presidents List scholars this spring during the annual Honors Convocation. (Photo by Aaron Grayson)

Tyler Vazquez, a presidential scholar recipient and a Dr. Levi Watkins scholar who is studying molecular biology, said he looked forward to seeing his peers and college deans in-person to celebrate their hard work paying off.

“It’s incredible to be able to honor so many students for their academic excellence,” Vazquez said. “It is no easy journey … kudos to all the students.”

There are approximately 269 freshmen that were recognized for being on the President’s List as well. Also included are 165 Honors seniors that will be graduating this spring.

Of the 2,974 Dean List students, those with a 3.0 or above, 1325 are from TSU’s record-setting freshman class.  Last semester, the University welcomed over 3500 first-year students. It was the largest in school history and top among HBCUs. The incoming class also had a GPA average of 3.4.  The Honors College has a total enrollment of 824 students as of March 2023.

SGA Vice President Aliyah Holmes, left and President Glenda Glover, right, with the 2023 Honors Convocation speaker TSU alumnus Dr. Eddie R. Cole, center, who was presented an award during the event. (Photo by Aaron Grayson)

Dr. Coreen Jackson, the Dean of the Honors College, said she is proud to witness many outstanding students ecstatic about their impressive academic journey. “Despite them going through the pandemic and dealing with all the challenges for the last few years, these students have weathered the storms and continued to hold their heads up and continue to strive towards academic excellence,” Jackson said.

“We are so pleased and proud of their accomplishments. Having the opportunity to honor them is just amazing.”

The Honors Convocation keynote speaker was TSU alumnus Dr. Eddie R. Cole, an Associate Professor of Higher Education and Organizational Change at UCLA and the author of a multi-award-winning book, The Campus Color Line. During the event, Dr. Cole expressed his gratitude towards his undergraduate professors and experience at the university for setting him up for a successful professional career.

Dr. Levi Watkins Jr., scholars during the 10th annual honors convocation ceremony. (Photo by Aaron Grayson)

“In so many ways I am just thrilled to be here because looking at you, I see myself,” the 2007 graduate said to the honor students.

“One thing that is clear out of all my success as a student at the next level … was that Tennessee State University prepared me to be there. It was my HBCU experience,” Dr. Cole said.

For more information on the TSU Honors College, visit  https://www.tnstate.edu/honors/ .

TSU College of Agriculture’s Center of Excellence trains students to take on climate change and other global issues 

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (TSU News Service) – Tennessee State University’s wetland is crucial to the health of both water resources and wildlife in North Nashville. TSU graduate student Devin Moore said that’s why he is grateful to be able to participate in research of the TSU wetland project, ultimately benefiting local Nashville communities.

Moore’s study of TSU’s wetland is made possible through a $6 million grant from the 1890 Center of Excellence Land. The award is for three years and will provide critical research on creating a quality environment that mitigates the impact of climate change in Tennessee, across the nation and globally.  

“Through the funding from the Center of Excellence (COE) we have been able to measure and analyze some of the toxins in the water through new progressive technology,” Moore said. 

Devin Moore placing teabags in the TSU Wetland to absorb and test toxins found. (Photo submitted)

Moore is receiving a master’s degree in agriculture with a focus on environmental sciences and is currently researching harmful algal blooms in the TSU Wetland and at the Ted Rhodes Golf Course in North Nashville. 

Wetlands have their own distinct ecosystem that can help advance the knowledge and resolutions to complex problems, including those related to climate change. According to scientists, extensive training and research is needed to solve these environmental issues.  

“I am excited for the research that I am doing,” added Moore, who obtained his bachelor’s degree from Yale University. “As someone who came from a social sciences background, it is nice to be around people who are experts in their field and are willing to sit down with me and bridge the gap,” he said.  

“It feels like what we’re doing could have some big global implications. I am grateful and thankful for the COE and everything they have enabled us to do.” 

Dr. Chandra Reddy

College of Agriculture Dean Chandra Reddy, who also serves as director of research, said the university was granted this opportunity in 2022 by the U.S. Department of Agriculture due to its faculty expertise and capacity to manage the funds.  

“Using our expertise within TSU and with our partners, we want to come up with some ideas and concepts, ways that we can mitigate the impact of climate on our famers and citizens. That’s the bigger goal, but to achieve that you need long term research, continuous support and build at capacity,” Dr. Reddy said. 

The COE consists of more than 20 faculty members, scientists, PhD, master’s, and undergraduate students. It is an investment that helps increase rural prosperity and economic sustainability of food systems in underserved farming communities, according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA) Acting Director Dr. Dionne Toombs. 

“Our goal is to really get the data generated, analyzed, and shared with the public and the funding agencies, and impress them in such a way that we get additional funding to create a physical space for students and experts to conduct extensive research in some of the most pressing environmental issues facing society,” Reddy said.

Agriculture master’s students Champagne Cunningham, right, and Faith Perry collecting water quality measurements from the TSU wetland. (Photo by Joan Kite)

Experts at the Center of Excellence are working on a variety of research projects ranging from renewable energy to animal sciences. TSU scientists are currently researching national issues such as how climate change impact seagrass production and greenhouse gas emissions. University scientists are also researching winter canola oil varieties that will work well for Tennessee farmers, and new export crops for the region such as grain amaranth used as chicken food. 

Champagne Cunningham, a master’s student who plans to become a freshwater ecologist after graduating this May, is also doing research in Nashville on harmful algal blooms. 

“Being able to say I am a part of a research group or a center that is doing such outstanding real-world groundbreaking research is interesting,” Cunningham said. “We get lots of hands-on experience. Because of TSU, I am learning techniques that will help me long term and secure a job as an ecologist.” 

TSU’s College of Agriculture is collaborating with four other HBCUs that make up the 1890 Center of Excellence. They are Alabama A&M University, Southern University, Florida A&M University and Langston University, to host the 1890 Center of Excellence.

About the Center of Excellence

The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA) announced this investment in 2022.

This will provide collaborative opportunities among 1890 Institutions to develop management practices that will promote natural resources, explore renewable energy sources, and develop climate smart agricultural production practices to reduce carbon dioxide in the atmosphere and improve environmental quality and sustainability, according to NIFA.

TSU reports over $70 million in research funding, impacts childcare, global food security and more

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (TSU News Service) – Early childcare for Tennessee families and global food security are among the top areas Tennessee State University is focusing on as the University reports continued record growth in research funding. TSU’s external research funding is just over $70.2 million with four months remaining in the 2022-2023 submission cycle. To date, the University’s Center of Excellence for Learning Sciences and the College of Agriculture have received the largest single awards totaling $28.9 million.

“TSU’s continued high research output and funded awards are a true testament to the hard work and commitment of our faculty and staff, especially as we also focus our attention on moving from an R2 to R1, the highest research designation, under the Carnegie Classification of Institutions of Higher Learning,” says TSU President Glenda Glover.

The TSU Center of Excellence for Learning Sciences is using grants to fund childcare and family support programs in Tennessee.

“A crucial cornerstone of an institution’s success is measured through its research and just as important is how that research will benefit our communities.” 

For its work with children and families, the TSU Center of Excellence for Learning Sciences received a total $18,958, 417 in federal and state funding. The Center is using the grants to fund childcare and family support programs in Tennessee.  Of that amount, nearly $5.3 million came from the Administration for Children and Families, Office of Head Start (ACF/OHS) to support Head Start and two Early Head Start-Child Care Partnership programs; and just under $13.7 million came from the Tennessee Department of Human Services (HHS/TDHS) to support the Tennessee Early Childhood Training Alliance and Tennessee Family Child Care Network. 

President Glenda Glover

The funding will provide services to 256 children and families and employ approximately 115 staff needed across the state. 

“The Center is proud of the work we do to support children, families, and professionals within the early childhood community,” says COELS’ director Dr. Kimberly Smith.  “We remain focused on educating and uplifting the early childhood workforce in Tennessee and we remain committed to improving the lives of the families we serve.”  

In the College of Agriculture, researchers are using a $10 million capacity building grant from the National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA) to support 57 different projects in agricultural education, agricultural business, biotechnology, food science, animal science, environmental science, renewable energy, and human health and nutrition. Two of the major projects will conduct research to enhance nutritional security and environmental quality. 

Dr. Chandra Reddy

Dr. Chandra Reddy, dean of the college and principal investigator of the capacity building grant, says the objective is to find solutions to challenges in global food security, enhancing the environmental quality, and nutritional security. 

“The other important goal of these projects is the diverse workforce development,” Reddy says.  “We are creating new knowledge and graduating diverse background students both at undergraduate and graduate levels.  We also share the research findings with public through our statewide extension programs to improve their productivity and quality of life.” 

CheKenna Fletcher is a first-year Ph.D. student in agricultural sciences with a concentration in food and animal sciences. Her research focus is on the extraction, isolation, characterization, and application of novel materials in health-promoting food products. She is ecstatic about the amount of funds the university is attracting for research. 

“TSU provides students and even professors with various opportunities to conduct research in a variety of fields with global interest,” says Fletcher, of Lebanon, Tennessee. “There are so many conferences, symposiums, and more one can attend to present his/her research, worldwide.” 

CheKenna Fletcher

In the first half of this fiscal year, TSU research proposals garnered more than $68.8 million in external sponsored research funding and now stands at $70.2 million, which is on pace to surpass the record $70.7 million received in 2021. That record-setting year for the University was one of the highest among all HBCUs. The new funding report is a major boost for the University in its continued planning to receive the “R1” research designation.  An R1 designation would mean more doctoral programs, research initiatives and funding for students and the university.  

Associate Vice President of Research and Sponsored Programs Dr. Quincy Quick, who is leading the R1 designation effort, says the goal is double the total amount of grants received. He believes TSU faculty and staff can ultimately reach the $140 million award mark.

Dr. Quincy Quick 

“Our recent historic research productivity and achievement over the last two fiscal years is a consequence of our outstanding and dedicated faculty and staff and their commitment to conducting and performing innovative and transformative high-level research,” says Quick. “Our faculty and staff are enthusiastically engaged in our mission for the highest status as we work collegially and diligently to become the fourth R1 designated institution in the state of Tennessee.” 

Here are some of the other top awards received in 2022-23: 

  • Dr. Andrea Tyler – Title III, $10,254,498 (Department of Education) 
  • Dr. Quincy Quick – RSP, $5,000,000 (Department of Energy) 
  • Dr. Karla Addesso – College of Agriculture, $2,479,982 (USDA) 
  • Dr. Melanie Cantu – College of Agriculture, $2,016,694 (USDA) 
  • Dr. Rebecca Selove – RSP, $1,772,784 (National Institutes of Health) 
  • Dr. Deo Chimba – College of Engineering, $1,611,168 (Dept. of Transportation) 
  • Dr. Margaret Whalen – RSP, $1,255,618 (National Institutes of Health) 
  • Dr. Roy Sonali – College of Agriculture, $1,158,373 (USDA) 
  • Dr. Jianwei Li, College of Agriculture, $1,118,709 (USDA) 
  • Dr. D’Etra Young – College of Agriculture, $1,000,000 (USDA) 
  • Dr. Robbie Melton – Academic Affairs, $1,000,000 (Apple/Hewlett Packard) 
  • Dr. Catherine Armwood – College of Engineering, $1,000,000 (NSF) 
  • Dr. Dafeng Hui – College of Life & Physical Sciences, $1,000,000 (NSF) 
  • Dr. Lin Li – College of Engineering, $1,000,000 – (NSF) 
  • Dr. Hongwei Si – College of Agriculture, $1,000,000 (USDA/NSF) 
  • Dr. Richard Mu – RSP, $1,000,000 (NSF) 

TSU College of Agriculture host USDA Forest Service event, pipeline for student employment and ‘R1’ status

Tennessee State University’s College of Agriculture hosted a USDA Forest Service-Southern Research Station Senior Leadership event this week, as a pipeline for employment opportunities for environmental science students.

USDA Forest Service, Southern Research Station (SRS) visit this week was yet another opportunity to highlight the university’s ongoing commitment to research and becoming an “R1” designation under the Carnegie Classification of Institutions of Higher Learning.

The TSU College of Agriculture is in the final stages of formalizing a partnership with the USDA Forest Service-Southern Research Station. (Photo by Aaron Grayson)

During the event, the university and SRS determined how goals and objectives may align for mutually beneficial outcomes and discussed how to improve connectivity between TSU and SRS scientists. USDA Forest Service representatives presented information about their agency, while TSU faculty and graduate students presented their research findings, with the idea of collaborating and integrating research projects with SRS.

Dr. Chandra Reddy, Director of Research and Administrator of Extension in the College of Agriculture, said the goal is to further expand the scope of the Center of Excellence on Natural Resources, Renewable Energy, and Environment with assistance from the SRS team.

SRS Director, Dr. Toral Patel-Weynand and Director of Research and Administrator of Extension in the College of Agriculture Dr. Chandra Reddy. (Photo by Aaron Grayson)

“SRS scientists conduct deep research in all aspects of the forestry with climate change filter,” Reddy said. “As we are building our capacity in environmental sciences, we want to build a strong partnership with the SRS team in training our graduate and undergraduate students, in addressing climate change concerns, and supporting the small forest landowners. We are very excited to host the leadership of the Southern Research Station of US Forest Service.”

SRS Director, Dr. Toral Patel-Weynand, highlighted their vision for increased collaboration. “We are working hard to make sure our workforce is inclusive and representative of the public we serve, a place where individuals can thrive and contribute to our collective success. We see places where TSU students can contribute to and gain experience from our research studies.”

HBCU Program Manager and Coordination Lead for SRS, Dr. Johnny Grace, said the Station, which is part of the nation’s largest forest research organization, is searching for ways to more effectively partner with TSU.

HBCU Program Manager and Coordination Lead for SRS, Dr. Johnny Grace (Photo by Aaron Grayson)

“We are attempting to connect with TSU students and faculty to develop a pipeline into our science programs and workforce,” Grace said.

While TSU scientists presented their lab work, a few graduate students studying agriculture presented their research as well.

Maria Schutte, a Dayton, Ohio native who is receiving her master’s degree from the environmental sciences program, said this opportunity will have more people involved in the forestry industry as the department of agricultural and environmental sciences is working towards being accredited for a forestry program.

“I think anything that helps us for research in a timely manner will help us get to R1,” Schutte said. “Having access to scientists through an established partnership to be able to set up projects will be great. It’s helping with our environmental sciences program, and I think this partnership will help us flush out environmental sciences as a major here.”

Maria Schutte (Photo by Aaron Grayson)

Robert Lee, former Deputy Program Manager for the SRS Forest Inventory and Analysis Program, said building positive relationships to enhance and sustain their nation’s forest ecosystems is one of the most important obligations to have. “This obligation also extends to promoting a diverse and inclusive workforce which are mutual goals of TSU and the Southern Research Station,” Lee said.

The TSU College of Agriculture is in the final stages of formalizing a partnership with the USDA Forest Service-Southern Research Station.

About USDA Forest Service

The Forest Service is an agency of the U.S. Department of Agriculture that administers the nation’s 154 national forests and 20 national grasslands. The Forest Service manages 193 million acres of land.

TSU Forensics Team brings home 74 awards after competing at state, national championship tournaments

Submitted by TSU staff

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (TSU News Service) – The Tennessee State University Forensics Team had a fantastic two weeks, competing at the Tennessee State Championship Tournament, and the HBCU National Competition where the team aimed to defend their three-peat national title run.

In the back-to-back weekend tournaments, the team brought home a total of 74 awards.

Tennessee State University Forensics Team competes at the Tennessee State Championship Tournament and the HBCU National Competition, winning a total of 74 awards.

 The State competition took place at Belmont University in Nashville, Tennessee, from Feb. 18–19. More than any other group, the team won an astonishing eight state championships out of the twelve events offered.

1st place results from TSU Forensics Team students were:

1st Place Rhetorical Criticism

Maya McClary

1st Place Prose Interpretation

Chase Garrett

1st Place Program Of Oral Interpretation

Chase Garrett

1st Place Poetry Interpretation

De’Traelyn Hubbard

1st Place Radio Broadcasting

Akyra McDougal

1st Place Duo Interpretation

Aaron Anderson & Dwight DeBerry

1st Place Dramatic Interpretation

Aaron Anderson

1st Place Top Individual Competitor

Aaron Anderson

The HBCU National Championship was held this past weekend at Virginia State University in Petersburg, Virginia from Feb 23-28. This year’s race was extremely close, and although the team fell short by six points to Howard University, the team departed as the most decorated team with eight national championships out of the twelve events offered. See results below:

1st and 2nd place results from TSU Forensics Team students were:

1st Place Prose Interpretation

Akyra McDougal

1st Place Program of Oral Interpretation

Aaron Anderson

1st Place Poetry Interpretation

Ashlynn Freeman

1st Place Informative Speaking  

Aliyah Holmes

1st Place Duo Interpretation

Aaron Anderson & Dwight DeBerry

1st Place Dramatic Interpretation

Ayana Nicholes

1st Place Slam Poetry

Iyanna Brazzile

1st Place Overall Individual Event Sweeps

2nd Place Overall Tournament Sweepstakes

TSU Takes 2nd Place at Honda Campus All-Star Challenge

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (TSU News Service) – Tennessee State University is heading to the Honda Campus All-Star Challenge National Championship Tournament. TSU earned the bid after its second place finish at the qualifying round held at Spelman College in Atlanta, Georgia. 

The team placed second in the tournament defeating Florida A&M, Spelman, and Voorhees College. The team defeated Morehouse College in the playoffs and lost a very tough game to Tuskegee University. 

HCASC is a national quiz competition sponsored by American Honda for HBCUs. For more information see www.hcasc.com

The members of the team are: 

Captain Cameron Malone, Junior, Oak Ridge TN, Electrical Engineering. 

Tyler Vazquez, Sophomore, Winston-Salem, NC, Biology

Morgan Gill, Sophomore, Conyers, GA, Urban Studies

Kelley Zumwalt, Junior, Loveland, CO, History/Political Science/English. 

TSU also had a second team to compete.

Darius Coleman, Freshmen, Memphis, TN, Film and Television Production, 

Kara Simmons, Sophomore, Chicago IL, Biology

Aniya Johnson, Freshmen, Shreveport, LA, Pre-Med 

Jada Womack, Sophomore, Baton Rouge, LA, Accounting 

Journey Brinson, Freshman, Memphis, TN, Biology 

The Coach of the Team: Dr. John Miglietta, History, Political Science, Geography, and Africana Studies. 

Assistant Coach Dr. Learotha Williams, History, Political Science, Geography, and Africana Studies. 

The team is looking forward to competing at the National Championship Tournament in Torrance, CA April 15-19.