“We are proud to partner with TSU:” Kroger donates $100,000 in scholarship aid to College of Agriculture

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (TSU News Service) – Four Tennessee State University College of Agriculture students will be $25,000 richer in scholarship aid, thanks to Kroger.

President Glenda Glover speaks with Sonya Hostetler, President of Kroger Nashville Division at the check presentation ceremony. (Photo by Janiece Pigg)

The University and the retail giant will establish the Kroger Scholarship and Student Success Fund at TSU in support of first-year students pursuing degrees intending to promote careers in the agricultural and food industry and workforce development.

The grocer is awarding TSU $100,000.

As the donation will introduce TSU students to career opportunities Sonya Hostetler, the grocer’s Nashville Division President, she said looks forward to a future with the University.

“This investment reinforces Kroger’s commitment to build up the communities we serve,” Hostetler said.  “We are proud to partner with TSU to support these students and ultimately, our future workforce.”

Dr. Chandra Reddy, Dean of the College of agriculture, speaks with Shantavia Webb, Kroger Human Resource Leader. (Photo by Janiece Pigg)

The check presentation took place in the Agriculture Biotechnology building with Kroger executives who joined President Glenda Glover, Dean and Director of Research/Administrator of Extension Chandra Reddy and TSU staff.

President Glover stated that $25,000 to start an education at TSU is a phenomenal investment for the students and the grocer.

“It plants the seed for success for our students,” Glover said. “It’s not what you do for TSU, but what you do for the board of community,” she told the Kroger executives.

During the presentation a Farm Bill scholarship recipient, TSU freshman Dacia Ringo, mentioned how grateful she is for scholarship opportunities as such.

“I know that this scholarship is going to help a lot of people like myself. Without that scholarship I wouldn’t be in school,” Ringo said.

“Thank you to everyone who made this opportunity possible.”

President Glenda Glover shares a moment with TSU freshman Dacia Ringo who is a Farm Bill scholarship recipient. (Photo by Janiece Pigg)

The colleges’ Director of Marketing and Communications Roderick Reed contacted Kroger regarding the funding opportunity and stated that he looks forward to working closely with the grocer to strengthen their relationship with TSU.

Dr. De’Etra Young, Associate Dean for Academics and Land-Grant Programs, said the donation will be beneficial to the lives of four deserving students who are seeking a career in agriculture.

“We receive inquires all the time from students seeking assistance. So this would change the impact for four students that are interested in pursuing agriculture,” Young said.

She stated that the selected students will work closely with faculty, staff and Kroger while receiving mentorship opportunities.

Over the course of 4-years throughout the undergraduate program, four selected scholars will receive up to $25,000 based on their financial needs, totaling in $100,000 in direct scholar’s aid. This is Kroger’s first donation to TSU, Young said, but she has hopes that this will become an annual gesture with additional industry partners.

“I think the college has been doing great, innovative work. So for us to receive initial recognition just confirms the work that we are doing.”

Rodrick Reed, Director of marketing and communications and De’Etra Young, Associate Dean for Academics and Land-Grant Programs De’Etra Young at Kroger check presentation. (Photo by Janiece Pigg)

Young stated that the college has a dean’s scholarship program that supports undergraduate research and internship opportunities, a program that currently has more than 40 students. While the College of Agriculture receives grant awards often, TSUAg obtained 68 competitive grants, totaling in almost $24 million last year. TSUAg was the top external funding award recipient at TSU.

In 2019 the college was awarded $100,000 from SunTrust now Truist fund agriculture education for four students, receiving $25,000 each.

Prior to, TSU was awarded $450,000 from the U.S. Department of Agriculture for food safety research in 2018.

First-year agriculture students will be able to apply for the scholarship in Fall 2022. Eligible students must be selected through an application process that evaluates merit thresholds and relevant majors, according to Dean Chandra Reddy. Continuation of student funding will be subject to satisfactory academic progress in the field of study and any scholarship program restrictions that may apply.

Additionally, scholarship funds may be made available to assist the students with educational support such as tutoring or to ensure academic success.

For more information regarding the upcoming scholarship opportunity, internships,  and or other financial opportunities, contact Dr. De’Etra Young at (615) 963-5123 or email dyoung23@tnstate.edu.

Department of Media Relations

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About Tennessee State University Founded in 1912, Tennessee State University is Nashville’s only public university, and is a  premier, historically black university and land-grant institution offering 39 bachelor’s degree programs, 24 master’s degree programs, and seven doctoral degrees.  TSU is a comprehensive research intensive institution with a R-2 Carnegie designation, and has a graduate school on its downtown Avon Williams Campus, along with the Otis Floyd Nursery Research Center in McMinnville, Tennessee.  With a commitment to excellence, Tennessee State University provides students  with a quality education in a nurturing and innovative environment that prepares them as alumni to be global leaders in every facet of society. Visit the University online at tnstate.edu.