[WATCH] MTSU senior’s cross-country flight of a lifetime retraces aviation pioneer’s path

Middle Tennessee State University senior Collin McDonald of Carthage, Tennessee, left Murfreesboro May 19 to begin a monthlong adventure that eventually will take him on a cross-country journey that follows that of aviation pioneer Cal Rodgers more than 100 years ago.

McDonald, 22, who is a 4.0 student majoring in aerospace maintenance management and an Honors College Buchanan Fellow, plans to take 30 days to complete the flight he is calling “Vin Fiz2” because Rodgers’ plane was called The Vin Fiz after a grape soft drink. McDonald anticipates at least 100 stops along the way. Here’s a recap of his deaprture:


Learn more about McDonald’s adventure at www.mtsunews.com/mcdonald-retraces-pioneers-path.

— Randy Weiler (Randy.Weiler@mtsu.edu)

[WATCH] MTSU students pitch ideas for seed money at biz plan finals

Students put their top business ideas on display at the Jennings A. Jones College of Business 2016 Business Plan Competition Finals, which wrapped up the spring semester by awarding a total of almost $20,000 in prizes to four finalists and other contest participants representing student entrepreneurs looking to turn their business ideas into reality. Dr. Bill McDowell, chair holder of the Wright Travel Chair of Entrepreneurship, which sponsors the event, said the competition gives students an intense hands-on learning experience while allowing them to gain feedback on their plans, develop networks and expose their ideas to potential investors. Here’s a recap:


Read the full story here.

Video by Jimmy Hart

[WATCH] MTSU shares ‘Farm2School’ life with 1,200 City Schools’ children

About 600 Murfreesboro City Schools’ third-graders learned about the MTSU gardens and another 600 took in the dairy portion of the MTSU Experiential Learning and Research Center Thursday (May 12). Several dozen buses transported the youngsters in two shifts to the MTSU Farm and Dairy in Lascassas, Tennessee, for the second “Farm2School” field trip in as many years. Here’s a recap:


— Video by Randy Weiler

[WATCH] MTSU celebrates 2K-plus graduates at Spring 2016 commencement

MTSU’s spring Class of 2016 undergraduates marched across the stage at Murphy Center Saturday, May 7, armed with new university degrees and words of inspiration from Nashville Mayor Megan Barry and HBO executive Kary Antholis. A total of 2,034 undergraduates received their degrees. The morning event included students from the College of Basic and Applied Sciences, the Jones College of Business, the College of Education, and the College of Media and Entertainment. The afternoon ceremony featured students in the College of Behavioral and Health Sciences, College of Liberal Arts, and the University College. Here’s a recap:


Read the full story here.

Video by Jimmy Hart

[WATCH] First 13 MTSU mechatronics grads pursue jobs

With Tennessee Board of Regents and Tennessee Higher Education approval, MTSU’s Department of Engineering Technology began a mechatronics engineering program nearly three years ago. In August 2013, Michigan native and Michigan State transfer Dallas Trahan became the program’s first student. Others followed, and the trickle has ballooned to a fast-growing 250 majors as the spring semester winds down.

During the university’s May 7 morning commencement ceremony, 13 seniors will become the first MTSU mechatronics graduating class. Here’s a recap about the 13 graduating seniors, their projects and the prospects for high-paying jobs.


— Video by Randy Weiler

[WATCH] MTSU holds inaugural College of Graduate Studies commencement ceremony

MTSU held its inaugural College of Graduate Studies commencement ceremony Friday, May 6, at Murphy Center. The afternoon ceremony saw 349 students presented with graduate degrees, including 316 master’s candidates, 16 education-specialist degree recipients and 17 doctoral candidates. Four graduate students also received graduate certificates. Dr. Carroll Van West, director of the MTSU Center for Historic Preservation and Tennessee’s state historian, served as graduate commencement speaker. Noting that MTSU has been conferring master’s degrees since 1952 and doctorates since 1970, university President Sidney A. McPhee said this first-time ceremony for graduate students, independent of MTSU’s undergrad event, reinforces the importance of the university’s mission. Here’s a recap:


Read the full story here.

Video by Jimmy Hart

[WATCH] MTSU students to benefit from Flight Simulator Building

MTSU students are the beneficiaries of a new $700,000 Department of Aerospace Flight Simulator Building dedicated Thursday (May 5) at Murfreesboro Airport.

Accompanied by aerospace faculty and staff and other university administrators, President Sidney A. McPhee led the tributes to the 3,600-gross-square-foot metal facility that will house four flight simulators at MTSU’s Flight Operations Center just off Memorial Boulevard. Here’s a recap of the dedication:


— Video by Randy Weiler

[WATCH] MTSU Honors class drives science at Bellwood Discovery School

Using superheroes as an educational tool, an MTSU honors science class brought STEM Extravaganza to Bellwood Discovery School for the second year. The 14-member Contemporary Issues in Science honors class for non-science majors promoted science and sustainability to 80 Discovery School fifth-graders April 14. STEM is an acronym for science, technology, engineering and mathematics. Here’s a recap of the activity:


— Video by Randy Weiler

[WATCH] MTSU nutrition students promote greater consumption of fruits, vegetables

Students from MTSU’s Nutrition and Food Science Program, in partnership with the Kroger supermarket chain, have spent the spring 2016 semester conducting tours of the produce department at a Murfreesboro Kroger store to encourage the public to eat more fruits and vegetables. Funded with a grant from the Produce for Better Health Foundation, the students gained valuable experience that will serve them well in their future careers as dietitians. The shoppers learned ways to put more fruits and vegetables into their diets economically by picking produce in season and considering dried, canned and frozen foods, as well as juices, as ways to make their diets healthier.


[WATCH] Graduating student veterans praise Stole Ceremony, MTSU experience

MTSU’s Theresa Huntley and Sean Martin were two of nearly 50 student veterans recognized April 13 during the Graduating Veterans Stole Ceremony in Cantrell Hall of the Tom H. Jackson Building. Starting with the first Stole Ceremony in May 2015, MTSU began to honor its graduating veterans with a formal ceremony. They receive red stoles to wear during graduation, which will be Friday, May 6, for those in the College of Graduate Studies and separate 9 a.m. and 2 p.m. ceremonies for seniors. Huntley and Martin praised the Stole Ceremony and their time as undergraduates. Huntley is a marketing major in the Jennings A. Jones College of Business and Martin is a sociology major in the College of Liberal Arts. Here’s a recap of the ceremony:


— Video by Randy Weiler