(WATCH) Study-abroad group gives True Blue salute to fallen MTSU alumnus in Vietnam

Members of an MTSU study-abroad course remembered a fallen alumnus recently on the site where he gave his life during an infamous battle in the Vietnam War. History professor Derek Frisby and a small group of students in his course, “Warfare and Public Memory in Vietnam,” visited Hill 937 in Vietnam’s A Shau Valley just days before American’s remembered fallen soldiers during Memorial Day observances. One of the soldiers who died in the Battle of Hamburger Hill was U.S. Army Spc. Jerry Michael Lovell, a 22-year-old from Shelbyville, Tennessee, who was killed May 18, 1969. Frisby and five students climbed the hill recently to pay tribute to Lovell, who attended MTSU in 1964.


Read the full story here.

Kudos! Professor Ryan Otter receives President’s Silver Column Award (WATCH)

Ryan Otter’s work as a teacher, researcher and advocate for student success has led to special recognition by MTSU President Sidney A. McPhee. Otter, an associate professor of biology, is the eighth recipient of the President’s Silver Column Award, which McPhee established in 2004. McPhee, along with Dean Bud Fischer of the College of Basic and Applied Sciences, recently surprised Otter at his office in the Science Building with the news. Watch:



Read the full story here.

— Video by Andrew Oppmann (andrew.oppmann@mtsu.edu)

MTSU students pitch ideas, earn cash at biz plan contest (WATCH)

The 2015 MTSU Business Plan Competition finals featured three teams pitching their ideas recently inside the Student Union Ballroom before a panel of judges. Salomon’s House LLC was the top winner, earning team members $7,500 in seed money to help bring their entrepreneurial idea into reality. Second-place winner was Green Source Energy Recovery, earning that team $5,000. Here’s a recap of the event:


Read the full story here.

— Video by Jimmy Hart (jimmy.hart@mtsu.edu)

MTSU students offer hope, support at 2015 Relay For Life (WATCH)

The third annual Relay For Life event held April 17 on MTSU’s campus raised more than $13,000 for the American Cancer Society. Catch a glimpse of the fun activities — dancing, corn hole and more — inside MTSU’s Student Health, Wellness and Recreation Center that night:


Video by Leigh Harrington (leigh.harrington@mtsu.edu)

Ken Griffey Sr. discusses baseball then and now (VIDEO)

Former Cincinnati Reds outfielder Ken Griffey Sr., a mainstay of “The Big Red Machine” in the 1970s, delivered the luncheon address at the 20th annual Baseball in Literature and Culture Conference April 3 in MTSU’s James Union Building. This was the final year for the conference at MTSU. Next year, Ottawa University in Ottawa, Kansas, will host the gathering of baseball aficionados and scholars.

A video of Griffey Sr. is available for viewing below.


(WATCH) Social entrepreneur Agrawal: Master a skill, check your friends …

Social entrepreneur Miki Agrawal was named by Forbes magazine as one of 2013’s “Top 20 Millennials on a Mission.” Agrawal is author of the book “Do Cool Sh*t,” which shares insights from her journey of leaving a traditional job that she hated to founding the popular farm-to-table pizza restaurant, WILD (formerly known as SLICE), in New York as well as co-founding female garment company THINX.

Agrawal was keynote speaker at the March 23 kickoff of MTSU’s second annual Nonprofit & Social Innovation Week. Agrawal told students that while surveys show that many millennials have felt the need to move back in with their parents in recent years, the changing nature of the economy has opened up promising opportunities for them to start their own businesses. But to do so, she cautioned, students must identify their passion and commit long term to turn that passion into a career. Here’s a recap of her remarks:


— Video by Jimmy Hart (jimmy.hart@mtsu.edu)

(WATCH) MTSU’s second Nonprofit & Social Innovation Week brings students, pros together

MTSU students were challenged to turn their passions into professions at the Nonprofit & Social Innovation Student Summit held Friday, March 27, at the James Union Building. Here’s a recap of the summit, which concluded the second annual Nonprofit & Social Innovation Week hosted by the Jones College of Business and the College of Liberal Arts.


Video by Leigh Harrington (leigh.harrington@mtsu.edu)

(WATCH) CNN’s Lisa Ling shares stories at MTSU on opportunities, female empowerment

Journalist Lisa Ling, executive producer and host of CNN’s “This is Life with Lisa Ling,” gave a powerful keynote address Thursday, March 26, at MTSU’s Women’s and Gender Studies Conference inside the Student Union Ballroom. Here’s a summary of her remarks about a career that’s carried her all over the globe.


Read the story here.

— Video by Leigh Harrington (leigh.harrington@mtsu.edu)

(WATCH) They did it! MTSU student relishes role in ‘Southern Fried Fuel’ trip

SEATTLE, Wash. — Ben Black could have spent spring break relaxing in Panama City Beach, Florida.

Instead, the Middle Tennessee State University senior criminal justice major chose to spend it bonding with five older men driving 1,850 miles halfway across the country on waste chicken fat and used cooking oil from university dining facilities.

In what he calls the trip of a lifetime, Black, 21, said driving across the country was an awesome experience and it included driving a 100-mile portion after midnight March 9.


The “Southern Fried Fuel” expedition ended successfully March 10 when MTSU researcher Cliff Ricketts and his five-member team completed the 1,850-mile final leg that finished in Seattle.

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

(WATCH) MTSU, Nissan spark minds at Microsoft Digigirlz event

FRANKLIN, Tenn. — Nissan partnered with MTSU and Microsoft recently to host the Microsoft DigiGirlz math-science girls event at Nissan’s North America headquarters. The Feb. 28 event was attended by 125 Midstate high school girls to provide them with a better understanding of what a career in technology is all about. Girls were exposed to STEM — science, technology, engineering and math — and women making their mark in these fields.

La Doris “Dot” Harris, director of the Office of Economic Impact and Diversity at the U.S. Department of Energy, was the guest speaker for the event, which also included a panel of STEM professionals answering questions, a college/career fair and hands-on sessions. Here’s a recap:


— Video by Leigh Harrington (leigh.harrington@mtsu.edu)