TSU students graduating with jobs say university has prepared them to succeed

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (TSU News Service) – When Maya Davis and Cametria Weatherspoon receive their degrees and head to Lockheed Martin to begin their careers, they will be aiming for success because of preparation received at Tennessee State University.

Career Development Center
TSU’s Career Development Center gives students tools they need for success. (photo by Emmanuel Freeman, TSU Media Relations)

Davis and Weatherspoon will be among more than 800 graduates from various disciplines on May 6 at the undergraduate commencement in the William Jasper Hale Stadium on TSU’s main campus.

The duo continues the university’s legacy of students who have received job offers and are ready to move right into the workforce.

Weatherspoon, 24, who majored in electrical engineering, will take an electrical engineering associate position. She will work in programming at Lockheed Martin’s Space Systems Company in Littleton, Colorado.

Lockheed Martin recently received a $100 million contract from the U.S. Air Force to support efforts related to the Joint Air-to-Surface Standoff Missile, or JASSM.

“Having a job after I graduate is a blessing,” said Weatherspoon, a Memphis, Tennessee native. “I’m very excited.”

Davis, a 23-year-old computer science major from Nashville, will head to Lockheed Martin’s Orlando, Florida, location where she will work on a logistics system for one of the company’s fighter jets.

Davis said she is nervous about relocating, but shares Weatherspoon’s sentiment about already having a job: “It’s exciting.”

Both students, and others, credit faculty at TSU and programs like the university’s Career Development Center with motivating them and providing the tools they needed to not only get their jobs, but be successful.

“The professors at TSU were reliable and very helpful,” said 22-year–old Mathew Smith of Nashville. The agricultural education major is currently a high school student teacher, and plans to teach full time after he graduates in May.

“It’s been quite rewarding,” Smith said of student teaching. “And honestly, the most influential and experience learning I’ve had throughout TSU.”

Meghan Lambert, a nursing major from Bolivar, Tennessee, has a job lined up with Methodist University Hospital, which has also agreed to pay for her post-graduate degree.

The TSU Women’s Center’s Link to Success program connects students with professionals in the workforce. (photo by Lucas Johnson, TSU Media Relations)

She said Linked to Excellence, a program in TSU’s Women’s Center that connects students with professionals in their field, was very helpful.

“It put me in contact with employers,” Lambert said. “I feel like my hard work at Tennessee State University really paid off.”

Jamal Coleman is coordinator of marketing, technology and communications at the Career Development Center, which helps students with their resumes, and provides tips on interviewing techniques, among other things.

“Our main goal is to help them get a foot in the door,” Coleman said. “It’s a great satisfaction when I hear about students getting these opportunities.”

Along with Lockheed Martin and Methodist, other companies where TSU students are going, and are currently working include Bank of America, Boeing, BMW, Raytheon and Rolls-Royce.

Dr. Bethany King Wilkes is director of student services in TSU’s College of Engineering. She said each semester students in the department “consistently receive lucrative job offers from top companies across the nation.”

“I frequently get calls from companies wanting to recruit our students because they know we have a pool of highly skilled individuals qualified for technical jobs that are hard to fill,” Wilkes sad.

TSU’s undergraduate commencement will begin at 8 a.m. Nationally-syndicated radio personality Tom Joyner will be the keynote speaker.

Graduate commencement service will be on May 5 at 5 p.m. in the Howard C. Gentry Complex. Congressman Jim Cooper will deliver the address.

Department of Media Relations

Tennessee State University
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Nashville, Tennessee 37209

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.