TSU Scholarship Gala aiming for $1 million to help students succeed

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (TSU News Service) – Keirra Ware feared she might not be able to return to Tennessee State University, but a scholarship put her mind at ease.

“Without the scholarship, I would have had to stay home because I wouldn’t have had enough money to come back to school,” Ware said. “When I saw it, I almost cried.”

Ware, a junior majoring in biochemistry, is among countless students who breathe easier thanks to funds raised through TSU’s Scholarship Gala held Homecoming week.

TSU’s Homecoming this year is on Oct. 14, when the Tigers will take on the Governors of Austin Peay State University at Nissan Stadium. The gala will take place on Friday, Oct. 13, at the Music City Center. Nationally syndicated radio show host, actor and comedian, Rickey Smiley, will be the gala’s master of ceremony.

The gala provides critical funds necessary to meet the significant need for student scholarships and ensures access to the relevant academic programs required to successfully educate and prepare students for the global marketplace.

Last year, the gala generated over $600,000, and the goal this year is $1 million.

“The scholarship gala is the most important event other than the football contest,” said Homecoming Chairman Grant Winrow. “This is by far the biggest effort by the university to raise scholarship money.”

 Nashville Mayor Megan Barry is the gala honorary chair this year. Also, the chair of the TSU Board of Trustees, Dr. Joseph Walker, III, and vice chair, Dr. Deborah Cole, are serving as honorary gala co-chairs.

In addition, the gala will recognize a “stellar group” of honorees and grand marshals. They include Dr. Frederick S. Humphries, who will receive a Special Presidential Recognition. Humphries, TSU’s fourth president, served from 1974-1985.

Other honorees are: Dr. Sterlin Adams, retired, professor and special assistant to Dr. Humphries; Dr. Evelyn P. Fancher, retired, director of libraries; Dr. Raymond Richardson, retired professor and chair of physics, mathematics and computer science; and William “Bill” Thomas, former head football coach and athletic director.

The grand marshals are: Georgette “Gigi” Peek Dixon, senior vice president and director of national partnerships, government and community relations at Wells Fargo; Alfred Gordon, vice president of operations for Frito-Lay North America; State Senator Thelma Harper, 19th District, Tennessee General Assembly; and Roosevelt “Bud” Reese, CEO of CMI Foundation.

“We have a stellar group of very accomplished individuals with proven track records of successes in their respective career fields,” Winrow said. “I think their selfless commitment of service and helping others is the commonality they all share.”

For more information about the gala and how to donate, visit http://www.tnstate.edu/gala/.

To find out more about TSU’s overall Homecoming this year, visit http://www.tnstate.edu/alumni/homecoming/documents/HomecomingSchedule.pdf.


About Tennessee State University

Tennessee State University is Nashville’s only public university, and is a comprehensive, urban, co-educational, land-grant university offering 38 bachelor’s degree programs, 25 master’s degree programs and seven doctoral degrees. 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.