TSU, World Bank Group enter knowledge and talent-sharing alliance to benefit students, faculty

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (TSU News Service) – Tennessee State University is partnering with the World Bank Group in a knowledge and talent-sharing alliance that will provide career and research opportunities for TSU students and faculty. The World Bank Group HBCU Alliance, which also includes five other historically black colleges and universities, says the goal is to advance “a more inclusive and sustainable social and economic development” between the bank and the six institutions.

President Glenda Glover welcomes Dr. Bah-Shen Turkel Welch, Liaison of the World Bank Group HBCU Alliance. (Photo by Aaron Grayson)

Under the alliance, TSU students and those from the other institutions will be opened to internship and career opportunities. Faculty will receive research opportunities, as well as stipends for those interested in incorporating the bank’s content into their courses and/or project-based research and community studies.

On Feb.7, a delegation of four experts from the World Bank Group visited TSU and met with officials, students, and faculty during a gathering in the Forum. The visitors made presentations about the work of the bank and discussed the critical role TSU and the other HBCUs can play in helping the World Bank solve some of the world’s global challenges, such as extreme poverty, hunger, and promoting shared prosperity.

Nathaelle Georges

“We are happy to welcome the World Bank Group to our campus,” said TSU President Glenda Glover, who was part of the initial meeting last year to discuss the formation of the alliance. On Sept. 23, President Glover and the presidents of Claflin, Clark Atlanta, Howard, Jackson State, and Xavier Universities met in Washington, D.C., and signed the agreement. 

 “We are so happy they chose TSU as part of the alliance that consists of six HBCUs. We are very happy about this opportunity that will give our students internships, scholarships, and career opportunities in all disciplines, and expose our faculty to world-class research that will provide critical answers and solutions to some of the world’s global challenges.”

Dr. Bah-Shen Turkel Welch, liaison of the World Bank Group HBCU Alliance, thanked President Glover for her role in making the WBG-HBCU Alliance a reality.

Rashad Dawson

“We wanted Madam President (Glover) at the table. Tennessee State University is really on the move under her leadership,” Welch said. “Our goal was to identify partners who understand the mission and focus of what we are doing, and we know TSU is ready.”

She said the focus of the alliance is internships and career and exposure to World Bank Group knowledge sharing between personnel and faculty in a “symbiotics “relationship. “This gives students and faculty an option for research while giving students the capacity to see other careers,” she said.

Nathaelle Georges, a biology major from Atlanta; and Rashad Dawson, a business administration major with a concentration in human resources, were among several students who attended the World Bank Group presentation. Before the briefing, neither one had heard much about the World Bank and its work.

Stevan Jackson, Senior External Affairs Officer of the World Bank Group, makes a presentation before student and faculty in the Forum. (Photo by Aaron Grayson)

“These experts being on our campus today opened my eyes into the World Bank and about career choices in a place I never thought of,” said Georges, a sophomore. “As someone who wants to go into the medical field, some of the things they talked about align well with my career goals.”

Dawson, a freshman from Milwaukee, added, “Absolutely, I am open to seeking career opportunities with the World Bank.  With my concentration in human resources, I think they would be a perfect fit for me.”

Dr. Mohamed Kanu, professor of public health and associate dean of the College of Health Sciences, teaches a course in global health. He said “there is a lot of interest” in what the World Bank is offering, especially with opportunities abroad.

“Students want to explore beyond the shores of the United States,” he said. “What I want to do is to have an opportunity to write or apply for a grant through the World Bank that will allow me to involve my students so that I can take them to places outside of the U.S. to see the prospects and possibilities that are out there.”

Earlier, Dr. Arlene Nicholas-Philips, campus representative for the World Bank Group HBCU Alliance, said the university attaches great importance to the visit of World Bank Group delegation, and the benefits students and faculty will gain through the alliance.

‘We prepare you (students) for the world and we help to open your minds and hearts to the level of impact you can make globally,” Nicholas-Philips said. “We hope that by the end of the presentation today, your minds will be opened to the many possibilities and opportunities this alliance offers.”

Other members of the World Bank Group delegation who spoke or presented at Tuesday’s program were: Stevan Jackson, senior external affairs officer; Sophie Rabuku, senior executive assistant; and Dr. Mary Oluseyi Zackius-Shittu, senior human resource business partner.For more information on the World Bank Group HBCU Alliance, contact Dr. Arlene Nicholas -Philips at (615) 963-7427.