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Artists create tiny Tennessee Christmases at MTSU for D.C. tree

Two dozen young Midstate artists’ unique visions will be on display, with help from MTSU students, when Tennessee’s state Christmas tree shines brightly alongside the National Christmas Tree in Washington, D.C., on Friday, Dec. 1.

MTSU senior Sarah Mahmud, left, a health administration major from Hendersonville, Tennessee, applies a seal on a Midstate artist's holiday creation during the recent VSA Tennessee ornament-making workshop at the university. The ornaments, prepared by young artists with disabilities, will be displayed on the Tennessee state tree alongside the National Christmas Tree in Washington, D.C., beginning Dec. 1.

MTSU senior Sarah Mahmud, left, a health administration major from Hendersonville, Tennessee, applies a seal on a Midstate artist’s holiday creation during the VSA Tennessee ornament-making workshop at the university. The ornaments, prepared by young artists with disabilities, will be displayed on the Tennessee state tree alongside the National Christmas Tree in Washington, D.C., beginning Dec. 1. (MTSU photo by Eric Sutton)

Participants in the VSA Tennessee program crafted the festive folk ornaments on a decidedly non-wintry afternoon, but a Yule log fire, a wisecracking Santa and holiday stockings and sweaters inside MTSU’s Ingram Building made the brief but boisterous workshop creatively delightful for the artists and their supporters.

Those supporters included friends and family members alongside MTSU professor Lori Kissinger and her EXL Organizational Communications in Communities students, who once again coordinated the project from beginning to end.

Kissinger also directs VSA Tennessee, the state organization on arts and disability that was established at MTSU. It’s also an affiliate of VSA, the international organization on arts and disabilities founded in 1974 by Ambassador Jean Kennedy Smith and formerly known as Very Special Arts.

Lori Kissinger

Lori Kissinger

“This ORCO 3250 class voted unanimously to make this event more than just making ornaments,” Kissinger said of her experiential learning students.

“They arranged for the decorations, the photo booth, the extra ‘make and take’ ornaments, stockings and the refreshments. They’ve done a great job!”

Yvette Cowden of Nashville, who’s worked with VSA Tennessee as a teaching artist for several years, provided the artistic direction for this year’s ornament project, an Appalachian folk-inspired design.

Each of the ornaments is filled with pinecones, musical instruments, ribbons, buttons, burlap, rolled paper, feathers, beads and more and will be protected by and viewed through its plastic globe’s unpainted side as it hangs on the Tennessee tree in Washington.

“It’s a fairly simple design. You just use your hands and your imagination and have fun,” Cowden said as the young artists inspected and collected items from the selection of supplies, already mentally planning their creations.

VSA Tennessee logo webJudy Boyd of Murfreesboro looked on with a smile as her son, longtime craftsman Adam “A.J.” Boyd, consulted with his artist’s assistant for the afternoon, MTSU freshman Dillon Koenig of Cleveland, Tennessee.

Amid their happily noisy surroundings, the men discussed which supplies would have the best impact on Adam Boyd’s design.

“He is a crafty guy,” Judy Boyd said. “He’s participated in a lot of events with VSA. Whenever Lori (Kissinger) has a project that he’s interested in, he goes and does it.”

Koenig said he and his organizational communication classmates were determined to make the event a special one for the visiting artists.

“We took a class vote and everybody immediately said ‘YES!’” Koenig, a freshman majoring in public relations, explained. “We didn’t know what it entailed at first, but it’s been really exciting to see what we’re all doing together.”

Two of the special ornaments prepared during the recent VSA Tennessee ornament-making workshop at MTSU await packing for shipment to Washington, D.C., where they’ll be displayed on the Tennessee state tree alongside the National Christmas Tree beginning Dec. 1. (Photo courtesy of Lori Kissinger)

Two of the special ornaments prepared during the VSA Tennessee ornament-making workshop at MTSU await packing for shipment to Washington, D.C., where they’ll be displayed on the Tennessee state tree alongside the National Christmas Tree beginning Dec. 1. (Photo courtesy of Lori Kissinger)

Kissinger’s students regularly help with logistics for VSA events as part of her experiential learning classes, coordinating events like the annual Tennessee VSA Young Soloist Competition and the “Golden Ratio Project,” an international arts education exchange performance.

The VSA Tennessee artists’ ornaments will once again become part of a now 94-year-old tradition of celebrating Christmas with a national tree in the nation’s capital.

Every year, one-of-a-kind ornaments are made by Americans to hang on the 56 trees — one for every U.S. state, territory and the District of Columbia — that surround the National Christmas tree.

The Dec. 1 tree-lighting ceremony is a family must-see, whether in person in Washington, D.C., or on TV in special National Park Service and National Park Foundation programming.

All the trees will be on display through the end of December on the Ellipse in President’s Park.

To learn more about the work of VSA Tennessee, visit www.vsatn.org or contact Kissinger at userk7706@comcast.net. You can learn more about the national Christmas tree at www.thenationaltree.org.

— Gina E. Fann (gina.fann@mtsu.edu)

MTSU senior Ashley Brannom, left, an organizational communication major from Tullahoma, Tennessee, applies a seal on a Midstate artist's holiday creation during the recent VSA Tennessee ornament-making workshop at the university.

MTSU senior Ashley Brannom, left, an organizational communication major from Tullahoma, Tennessee, applies a seal on a Midstate artist’s holiday creation during the VSA Tennessee ornament-making workshop at the university. (MTSU photo by Eric Sutton)

Artist Adam “A.J.” Boyd of Murfreesboro, right, inspects his work in progress while MTSU freshman Dillon Koenig of Cleveland, Tennessee, acts as artist’s assistant during the VSA Tennessee ornament-making workshop at the university.

Artist Adam “A.J.” Boyd of Murfreesboro, right, inspects his work in progress while MTSU freshman Dillon Koenig of Cleveland, Tennessee, acts as artist’s assistant during the VSA Tennessee ornament-making workshop at the university. (MTSU photo by Eric Sutton)

MTSU’s new Chinese Music Ensemble takes stage for Friday concert

Students from MTSU’s inaugural Chinese Music Ensemble course will put their talents on display in a unique concert performance.

Chinese Music Ensemble fall2016 poster web

Click on the poster to learn more about MTSU’s Center for Chinese Music and Culture and the new Chinese Music Ensemble.

The MTSU Center for Chinese Music and Culture will present the MTSU Chinese Music Ensemble’s first semester-end concert at 3 p.m. Friday, Dec. 2, at the center, located in Suite 1600 of the Miller Education Center, 503 Bell St. in Murfreesboro. This event is free and open to the public.

A printable campus parking map is available at http://tinyurl.com/MTSUParkingMap.

Off-campus visitors attending the daytime event should obtain a special one-day permit from MTSU’s Office of Parking and Transportation at www.mtsu.edu/parking/visit.php.

Dr. Mei Han

Dr. Mei Han

“Throughout the semester, the ensemble members have learned Chinese bamboo wind instruments and various pluck and bowed-string instruments,” said Dr. Mei Han, center director and an associate professor of music.

Beginning with the fall 2016 semester, the Chinese Music Ensemble has been offered as a special topics course to all students. The instructors are professors and graduate students from the Central Conservatory of Music in Beijing, China, and instruments are provided.

Registration requires permission from Han and the MTSU School of Music.

“Together with their Chinese teachers, the concert will bring a new musical and cultural experience to the audience,” Han said.

For more information, contact Han at 615-898-5718 or mei.han@mtsu.edu.

— Gina K. Logue (gina.logue@mtsu.edu)

MTSU’s Lavinia Project gives violence survivors a voice at Dec. 1 event

Survivors of sexual assault and domestic violence will express themselves through creative writing thanks to an intriguing MTSU endeavor set Thursday, Dec. 1.

Matthew Brown

Dr. Matthew Brown

The Lavinia Project will conduct an end-of-semester reading of original literature and live music at 7 p.m. Dec. 1 at Just Love Coffee Roasters, 129 E. MTCS Road in Murfreesboro.

The event is free and open to the public.

Dr. Matthew Brown, a lecturer in the Department of English, started the Lavinia Project with an MTSU student after conducting workshops at a local women’s and children’s crisis center.

“The ultimate goal or mission of The Lavinia Project is to use writing and the arts to humanize and legitimize the experiences of survivors of domestic and sexual violence, and thus to begin to tilt the discussion that surrounds these issues toward prevention and deterrence of abusive behavior,” reads a statement on the project’s Facebook page.lavinia-project-logo_web

Brown, a published poet, is co-founder of Writers’ Corps, a group of student-veterans who publish their personal expressions in an annual literary magazine called DMZ.

In working with the veterans, Brown said he realized that writing poems, essays and short stories had a therapeutic effect for many of them.

“I found that much of my research while composing my dissertation on the psychological, physiological, neurocognitive and social effects of trauma, as well as the benefits of expressive writing therapy, that the heart of the research in this field lies in the domain of studying rape,” said Brown.

For more information, contact Brown at 615-898-2503 or matthew.brown@mtsu.edu or thelaviniaproject@gmail.com, or visit www.facebook.com/TheLaviniaProject.

Gina K. Logue (gina.logue@mtsu.edu)

‘MTSU On the Record’ goes behind ‘Joys’ scenes with chorale director

A recent edition of the “MTSU On the Record” radio program explained all the hard work that goes into one of the holiday season’s most entertaining performances.

Angela Tipps

Angela Tipps

Click on the poster for a link to purchase "Joys of the Season" tickets.

Click on the poster for a link to purchase “Joys of the Season” tickets.

Host Gina Logue’s interview with Angela Tipps, director of the MTSU Women’s Chorale and a lecturer in the School of Music, first aired Nov. 21 on WMOT-FM/Roots Radio 89.5 and www.wmot.org. You can listen to their conversation below.

The Women’s Chorale is one of the groups involved in “Joys of the Season,” a concert showcasing sacred and secular music, dance, theater and art for the entire family.

The event is scheduled for 7 p.m. Thursday, Dec. 1, at MTSU’s Tucker Theatre.

“I have a number of friends who are choral music educators in high schools and I come visit with them,” said Tipps. “When potential MTSU students audition for the School of Music, I’ll be in touch with them to talk about the Women’s Chorale, so when they come to MTSU, they know that’s an available opportunity.”

“Joys of the Season” tickets are available at www.mtsuarts.com or 888-71-TICKET (888-718-4253). A printable campus parking map is available at http://tinyurl.com/MTSUParkingMap.

To hear previous “MTSU On the Record” programs, visit the searchable “Audio Clips” archives at www.mtsunews.com.

For more information about “MTSU On the Record,” contact Logue at 615-898-5081 or WMOT-FM at 615-898-2800.

MTSU students get a head start on holidays with ‘True Blue’ display

Thanks to some interior design majors, an array of MTSU blue is adding to the festive air at a Murfreesboro business.

These items are part of the “True Blue Holiday” booth, created by MTSU interior design majors and on display at Hylabrook Antiques Mall in Murfreesboro. (Photos submitted)

These items are part of the “True Blue Holiday” booth, created by MTSU interior design majors and on display at Hylabrook Antiques Mall in Murfreesboro. (Photos submitted)

The “True Blue Holiday” booth was featured in the Christmas open house at Hylabrook Antiques Mall, 204 Chaffin Place, in early November.

The display will remain available for public viewing until spring semester classes begin Jan. 17, 2017.

Deborah Belcher, chair of the MTSU Department of Human Sciences, said senior Brittney Blair of Memphis, Tennessee, and junior Kiana Woodward of Shelbyville, Tennessee, volunteered to design and install the booth with Belcher’s coordination.

“The department has been partnering with Hylabrook Antiques since fall 2014 to provide interior design students with hands-on opportunities to lay out furniture and merchandise accessories and artwork,” said Belcher.

For more information, contact Belcher at 615-898-2302 or deborah.belcher@mtsu.edu or Hylabrook Antiques Mall at 615-907-6066.

— Gina K. Logue (gina.logue@mtsu.edu)

Vintage copies of MTSU yearbooks complement the other items in the “True Blue Holiday” booth, created by MTSU interior design majors and on display at Hylabrook Antiques Mall in Murfreesboro.

Vintage copies of MTSU yearbooks complement the other items in the “True Blue Holiday” booth, created by MTSU interior design majors and on display at Hylabrook Antiques Mall in Murfreesboro.

MTSU Arts brings ‘Joys of the Season’ to community Dec. 1

MTSU is preparing once again to bring holiday joy to the university community with the annual “Joys of the Season” showcase of music, art, theater and dance set Thursday, Dec. 1.

Click on the poster for a link to purchase "Joys of the Season" tickets.

Click on the poster for a link to purchase “Joys of the Season” tickets.

The MTSU Arts event, hosted by the College of Liberal Arts, will be presented at 7 p.m. Dec. 1 in the university’s Tucker Theatre inside the Boutwell Dramatic Arts Building. A campus parking map is available at http://tinyurl.com/MTSUParkingMap.

General admission tickets are $10, and children in grades K-12 and seniors age 55 and up can attend for $5 each. MTSU students can attend free with a valid ID.

Tickets can be purchased in advance at www.mtsuarts.com or by calling 888-71-TICKET (888-718-4253). Tickets also will be available at the Tucker Theatre box office an hour before curtain time.

MTSU alumnus Larry Tolbert, a Murfreesboro attorney and longtime Blue Raider men’s basketball game announcer, will serve as “Joys of the Season” master of ceremonies. Men’s head basketball coach Kermit Davis will make a guest appearance especially for the children in the audience.

Dr. Karen Petersen

Dr. Karen Petersen

“The College of Liberal Arts is pleased to offer Joys of the Season to our community again this year,” said Dr. Karen Petersen, interim dean of the college. “It’s a great way to kick off the holidays while showcasing our exceptionally talented faculty and students.”

“Joys of the Season” launched in 2015 as a way to showcase the college’s performing and fine arts departments and to express the university’s gratitude for decades of community support.

This year’s show will feature a collection of holiday performances and artwork aimed at entertaining and delighting the entire family, including dance, storytelling and vocal and instrumental productions, often in multiple combinations, presented by students and faculty in the College of Liberal Arts.

Proceeds from “Joys of the Season” benefit MTSU Arts, which the College of Liberal Arts founded in 2011 to enhance opportunities for students in the Department of Art, Department of Theatre and Dance, and the School of Music, and bring together supporters of the fine and performing arts across Middle Tennessee.

Ascend Federal Credit Union is the longtime presenting sponsor of MTSU Arts events, and the 2016-17 media sponsor is Murfreesboro’s WGNS News Radio.

You can get a preview of the diversity of entertainment for this year’s show by watching a video from the 2015 performance, captured by MTSU’s Department of Electronic Media Communication, below.

One of the participants, MTSU Women’s Chorale director Angela Tipps, also is the featured guest on the Nov. 21 edition of “MTSU On the Record,” which airs at 8 p.m. on WMOT-FM/Roots Radio 89.5 and www.wmot.org.

For more information about the show and about MTSU Arts, visit www.mtsuarts.com. To learn more about MTSU’s College of Liberal Arts and its varied programs, visit www.mtsu.edu/liberalarts.

— Gina E. Fann (gina.fann@mtsu.edu)

Share holiday joy at MTSU’s annual concert of Handel’s ‘Messiah’ Nov. 28

The voices of the MTSU Schola Cantorum and the Middle Tennessee Choral Society will blend with an orchestra to celebrate the upcoming holiday season at the 32nd annual performance of George Frideric Handel’s “Messiah,” set Monday, Nov. 28.

Click on the poster for a link to purchase "Messiah" tickets for Nov. 28.

Click on the poster for a link to purchase “Messiah” tickets for Nov. 28.

The concert, scheduled for 7:30 p.m. Nov. 28 at Murfreesboro’s First United Methodist Church at 265 W. Thompson Lane, will feature guest soloists as well as student soloists.

Tickets are $15 for adults, $12.50 for seniors and $10 for children 12 and under and are available online at https://mtchoralsociety.org and at the door. MTSU faculty, staff and students will be admitted free with valid IDs.

The MTSU “Messiah” production once again will feature a professional orchestra and MTSU student, faculty and guest soloists performing the Christmas portion of the 1741 oratorio, which includes some of its most popular recitatives, arias and choruses drawn from the King James Bible and the Anglican Book of Common Prayer.

Dina Cancryn

Dina Cancryn

John Kramar

John Kramar

The choruses to be performed include “And the glory of the Lord,” “And He shall purify,” “For unto us a child is born,” “Glory to God” and the familiar “Hallelujah” chorus.

This year’s soloists are soprano Dina Cancryn, an MTSU vocal music professor, and bass John Kramar, a voice professor at East Carolina University School of Music in Greenville, North Carolina.

MTSU student soloists include:

  • Daniel Fields, a senior audio production and music dual major from Lawrenceville, Georgia, who’ll solo on the “Comfort ye, my people” verse from the book of Isaiah.
  • Raphael Llana, a senior music industry major from Gainesville, Florida, who’ll perform the “Ev’ry valley shall be exalted” solo from Isaiah.
  • Hannah Sims, a senior voice major from Friendship, Tennessee, who’ll solo on “But who may abide the day of His coming” from the book of Malachi.
  • Nathaniel “Nate” Paul, a sophomore voice major from Strawberry Plains, Tennessee, who’ll perform the “For behold, darkness shall cover the earth” solo.
  • Kimberlin Lacy, a senior voice major from Ooltewah, Tennessee; Kayla Schindler, a junior voice major from Huntsville, Alabama; Mileah Milstead, a sophomore theater major from McMinnville, Tennessee; and Emily Harrison, a senior music industry major from Roswell, Georgia, whom Dr. Raphael Bundage, a professor of vocal performance in MTSU’s School of Music and the Choral Society music director/conductor, called “the four angels,” will perform the annunciation to the shepherds verses from the book of Luke.
  • Jernie Talles-Millan, a senior music industry major from Vero Beach, Florida, who’ll solo on “He shall feed His flock like a shepherd” from Isaiah.
  • Amelia Lufkin, a sophomore voice major from Knoxville, Tennessee, who’ll solo on the “Come unto Him” verse from the book of Matthew.
  • Collin Peterson, a senior voice and music education major from Murfreesboro, who’ll perform “Thou shalt break them with a rod of iron” from the Psalms.

You can hear a preview of the groups’ work below in a video of the Schola Cantorum performance of the “Ave Maria (Angelus Domini)” arranged by Franz Biebl.

For more information on this and other concerts in the MTSU School of Music, call 615-898-2493 or visit the MTSU School of Music “Concert Calendar” link.

For details on joining the Middle Tennessee Choral Society, contact Bundage at raphael.bundage@mtsu.edu or 615-898-2849.

— Gina E. Fann (gina.fann@mtsu.edu)

Members of the MTSU Schola Cantorum and Middle Tennessee Choral Society, shown here during their fall 2015 performance of Mozart's "Requiem," will present Handel's "Messiah" in their 32nd annual community concert, set Monday, Nov. 28, at Murfreesboro's First United Methodist Church. (MTSU file photo by Andy Heidt)

Members of the MTSU Schola Cantorum and Middle Tennessee Choral Society, shown here during their fall 2015 performance of Mozart’s “Requiem,” will present Handel’s “Messiah” in their 32nd annual community concert, set Monday, Nov. 28, at Murfreesboro’s First United Methodist Church. (MTSU file photos by Andy Heidt)

Members of the MTSU Schola Cantorum and Middle Tennessee Choral Society, shown here during their fall 2015 performance of Mozart's "Requiem," will present Handel's "Messiah" in their 32ndt annual community concert, set Monday, Nov. 28, at Murfreesboro's First United Methodist Church.

Members of the MTSU Schola Cantorum and Middle Tennessee Choral Society, shown here during their fall 2015 performance of Mozart’s “Requiem,” will present Handel’s “Messiah” in their 32ndt annual community concert, set Monday, Nov. 28, at Murfreesboro’s First United Methodist Church.

The MTSU Schola Cantorum and the Middle Tennessee Choral Society, conducted by Raphael Bundage and accompanied by an orchestra, perform Handel’s “Messiah” in the sanctuary of the First United Methodist Church in Murfreesboro in this November 2015 photo. The 2016 performance, which is the community’s 32nd annual concert, is set Monday, Nov. 28, at FUMC. (Photo courtesy of the Middle Tennessee Choral Society.)

The MTSU Schola Cantorum and the Middle Tennessee Choral Society, conducted by Dr. Raphael Bundage and accompanied by an orchestra, perform Handel’s “Messiah” in the sanctuary of the First United Methodist Church in Murfreesboro in this November 2015 photo. The 2016 performance, which is the community’s 32nd annual concert, is set Monday, Nov. 28, at FUMC. (Photo courtesy of the Middle Tennessee Choral Society)

True Blue Tour 2016: Scholarships benefit MTSU Louisville prospects

LOUISVILLE, Ky. — John Mehne adores all things animation.

The Louisville, Kentucky, resident and Atherton High School senior knows Middle Tennessee State University has a growing animation program in the College of Media and Entertainment.

Mehne, 18, has applied and been accepted to attend MTSU starting in August 2017. He also has medical disabilities requiring frequent hospitalization, draining the family’s single income every month.

New friends Cameron Gunn, left, 17, a Doss High School senior, and John Mehne, 18, an Atherton High senior, exchange a high-five near the end of the MTSU True Blue Tour event Nov. 16 at the Louisville Marriott East Hotel. (MTSU photos by Randy Weiler)

New friends Cameron Gunn, left, 17, a Doss High School senior, and John Mehne, 18, an Atherton High senior, exchange a high-five near the end of the MTSU True Blue Tour event Nov. 16 at the Louisville, Ky., Marriott East Hotel. (MTSU photos by Randy Weiler)

At the conclusion of the MTSU True Blue Tour event in Louisville Nov. 16 at the Louisville Marriott Hotel, university President Sidney A. McPhee awarded Mehne a $2,000 scholarship.

MTSU and the president award thousands of scholarship dollars to students at the evening receptions and at the luncheons for counselors and community college staff to present to deserving students.

Louisville marked the 11th and final True Blue Tour stop for MTSU and its admissions staff this fall. Representatives from the Murfreesboro university have traveled from Johnson City to Memphis in Tennessee and to Atlanta and Huntsville, Alabama, before wrapping up with a two-day swing to Bowling Green and Louisville.

“He’s trying to accumulate as many scholarships as he can,” Lora Mehne said of her son. “He’s a pretty brainy kid.”

John Mehne, who achieved a 34 on his ACT, has applied for the Honors College Buchanan Fellowship, the highest scholarship award given at MTSU. It is named for the late James M. Buchanan, the 1940 alumnus who received the 1986 Nobel Prize in economics.

Doctors have diagnosed Mehne with severe ulcerative colitis. Through it all, his mother said, “it’s amazing how he has such a positive attitude.”

“I give it my all,” John Mehne explained. “I always try to muddle through it, even on the bad days. You can be a victim of your circumstances or you can survive it.”

Mehne said there’s a particular reason he plans to pursue animation as a career.

“I want to make games and peripherals for kids who have disabilities and illnesses like mine,” he said. “I want to let them know they are not the only one. There are tons of people out there with struggles who made it out the other end.”

Lora Mehne said her husband, David Mehne, who works in law enforcement, is the main income provider, and the family has extensive medical bills each month.

“We’re praying for an incredible scholarship,” she added.

John Mehne said he considers MTSU one of the best — if not the best — schools in the nation.

Charlise Stoudemire, 16, a junior at Central High School in Louisville, Ky., picks up MTSU Jones College of Business printed materials while her mother, Nae Reid joins her at the True Blue Tour event Nov. 16 at the Louisville Marriott East Hotel.

Charlise Stoudemire, 16, a junior at Central High School in Louisville, Ky., picks up MTSU Jones College of Business printed materials while her mother, Nae Reid, joins her at the True Blue Tour event Nov. 16 at the Louisville Marriott East Hotel.

“I saw some incredible, inspirational things tonight,” he added. “The president has a radiant personality. I love his personality.”

His mom remarked on the presence of eight deans from a university at an event like the True Blue Tour.

“You just don’t see that anywhere,” she added.

Earlier in the day and with the holidays nearing, McPhee was in a giving spirit. He awarded seven $300 scholarships to Louisville-area high school counselors.

Dennis Robinson, a counselor at duPont Manual High’s Youth Performing Arts School, said it was a “fabulous” gesture.

“We have lots of students interested in audio engineering, music industry and music business,” Robinson said. “MTSU is well-known. We have an alum that went to MTSU and they’re now a personal assistant to Dolly Parton. … It (the scholarship) will be a big surprise for someone on Senior Night.”

Leigh Jackson, a counselor at Assumption High School, said McPhee’s scholarship “is amazing because, for our students, 70 or 75 percent will stay in-state. Then you have some others who want to go to school farther away, but may not financially be able to do that. This opportunity is huge.”

The Kentucky tour, which included a stop in Bowling Green Nov. 15, featured dialogue regarding the Academic Common Market, Regional Scholars Program and the Dec. 1 deadline for prospective freshmen, who want a major scholarship and meet the guidelines, to apply.

For more on the Academic Common Market, visit www.mtsu.edu/acm. To learn more about the Regional Scholars Program, visit www.mtsu.edu/financial-aid/scholarships/regional-scholars.php.

To learn more about the admissions and recruiting process, call 615-898-2233 or visit http://mtsu.edu/how-to-apply.

To learn about MTSU’s programs, visit www.mtsu.edu/programs.

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

Hayley Greenlee, left, area coordinator in MTSU Housing and Residential Life, offers advice on potential on-campus housing options to Albert Logan Jr. as his father, Albert Logan Sr., listens. The younger Logan, 17, is junior at Ballard High School in Louisville. MTSU brought its True Blue Tour to Louisville Nov. 16 at the Louisville Marriott East Hotel.

Hayley Greenlee, left, area coordinator in MTSU Housing and Residential Life, offers advice on potential on-campus housing options to Albert Logan Jr. as his father, Albert Logan Sr., listens. The younger Logan, 17, is a junior at Ballard High School in Louisville. MTSU brought its True Blue Tour to Louisville Nov. 16 at the Louisville Marriott East Hotel.

MTSU Honors College Dean John Vile, left, discusses with Olivia Edgar the criteria for prospective students to be a part of the college Nov. 16 during the True Blue Tour reception at the Louisville Marriott East. Edgar, 17, is a junior at Male High School and has visited the MTSU campus in Murfreesboro, Tenn. It is MTSU’s first tour trip to Louisville.

MTSU Honors College Dean John Vile, left, discusses criteria for prospective students with Olivia Edgar Nov. 16 during the True Blue Tour reception at the Louisville Marriott East. Edgar, 17, is a junior at Male High School and has visited the MTSU campus in Murfreesboro, Tenn.

Andrew Symonds, adviser in the MTSU aerospace department, answers questions from prospective students and their parents attending the Nov. 16 True Blue Tour visit to Louisville. The event took place at the Louisville Marriott East Hotel.

Andrew Symonds, adviser in the MTSU aerospace department, answers questions from prospective students and their parents attending the Nov. 16 True Blue Tour visit to Louisville. The event took place at the Louisville Marriott East Hotel.


True Blue Tour 2016: Illinois family makes 4-hour trek to study MTSU

Nov. 16, 2016

BOWLING GREEN, Ky. — Sarah Kozuszek and her family came to the MTSU True Blue Tour event Nov. 15 in Bowling Green from Nashville.

Not the Nashville that’s 60 miles away in Tennessee, but the Nashville that’s 230 miles and a four-hour drive away in Illinois, 50 miles east of St. Louis, Missouri. The Kozuszeks live on a 200-acre “hobby farm,” as David Kozuszek, Sarah’s father, put it.

Sarah Kozuszek, left, her father, David, and MTSU President Sidney A. McPhee share a laugh while talking Nov. 15 during the True Blue Tour event at the Sloan Convention Center in Bowling Green, Ky. The Kozuszeks, from Nashville, Ill., drove four hours to attend the student reception. She has a strong interest in equine science, a program offered by MTSU. (MTSU photo by Randy Weiler)

Sarah Kozuszek, left, her father, David, and MTSU President Sidney A. McPhee talk Nov. 15 during the True Blue Tour event at the Sloan Convention Center in Bowling Green, Ky. The Kozuszeks, from Nashville, Ill., drove four hours to attend the student reception. Sarah has a strong interest in equine science, a program offered by MTSU. (MTSU photos by Randy Weiler)

Mary Kozuszek, Sarah’s mother, said MTSU is their daughter’s first choice for a college or university. They’ve visited campus three times — once for a preview day, once for a campus tour and a third time just to ride around campus.

When they heard about the Bowling Green True Blue Tour event, they were willing to make the effort to attend.

Bowling Green marked the 10th stop on the 11-city tour that crosses all of Tennessee, from Johnson City to Memphis, and four out-of-state stops: Atlanta, Huntsville, Alabama, and Bowling Green and Louisville, Kentucky.

The tour, which recruits prospective students and shows Kentucky students programs that might not be available in their state, concludes Wednesday, Nov. 16, in Louisville with a luncheon for high school counselors, community college staff and MTSU alumni, and a 6 p.m. EST student reception.

“I was researching about colleges and found MTSU,” said Sarah Kozuszek, 18, a senior at Nashville High School, who has two horses she rides in shows. “I looked at their equine program and visited.”

One of the visits included meeting MTSU associate professor and graduate program director Holly Spooner and Dr. Jessica Carter, School of Agribusiness and Agriscience interim director. The family toured the Stark Agribusiness and Agriscience Building on campus and the Horse Science Center on West Thompson Lane.

“MTSU has a first-rate campus,” said David Kozuszek, a veteran who served in Operation Desert Storm. “We were very impressed.”

Sarah Kozuszek said they looked at “the state-of-the-art facility and like the feel of the smaller campus, and all of the staff were welcoming.”

An older brother, Adam, attends the University of Illinois. Younger sister Clara, 7, attended the Bowling Green tour event with the family.

When MTSU President Sidney A. McPhee met the family and learned about their dedicated efforts to not only drive to Bowling Green from their Illinois farm but her strong interest in attending the university, he invited Sarah to tell the crowd about herself, then gave her a $2,000 scholarship.

James Cross, right, a junior at McLean County High School in Calhoun, Ky., takes some printed material about the MTSU College of Media and Entertainment from adviser Stephanie Maxwell Nov. 15 during the True Blue Tour stop in Bowling Green, Ky. The recruiting event was held at the Sloan Conference Center.

James Cross, right, a junior at McLean County High School in Calhoun, Ky., takes some printed material about the MTSU College of Media and Entertainment from adviser Stephanie Maxwell Nov. 15 during the True Blue Tour stop in Bowling Green, Ky. The event was held at the Sloan Conference Center.

Several other outstanding students attended the Bowling Green True Blue Tour event, learning about the Academic Common Market and Regional Scholars Program opportunities available to them.

For more on the Academic Common Market, visit www.mtsu.edu/acm. To learn more about the Regional Scholars Program, visit www.mtsu.edu/financial-aid/scholarships/regional-scholars.php.

Earlier Tuesday, MTSU treated area high school counselors, alumni and others to a luncheon as a way of thanking them for sending students to the Murfreesboro, Tennessee, university.

MTSU offers nearly 150 programs including recording industry, concrete industry, aerospace, study abroad, equine science and more.

During the tour, McPhee, interim Provost Mark Byrnes, college deans, advisers and counselors from the admissions and financial aid offices answer questions from prospective students, transfer students and their parents or guardians.

The next MTSU preview day will be Saturday, March 18, 2017. For students who meet the criteria and complete their application for admissions, Dec. 1 is the freshman scholarship deadline.

To learn more about the admissions and recruiting process, call 615-898-2233 or visit http://mtsu.edu/how-to-apply.

To learn about MTSU’s programs, visit www.mtsu.edu/programs.

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

Macy Jones, left, 15, types personal information into an iPad while her best friend, Katie Woody, 16, watches Nov. 15 during the MTSU True Blue Tour student reception at the Sloan Convention Center in Bowling Green, Ky. Later, Jones’ name was drawn for an iPad, and MTSU President Sidney A. McPhee also gave her a $500 legacy scholarship. Jones and Woody are sophomores in teh Barren Area Virtual and Expanded Learning homeschool organization.

Macy Jones, left, 15, types personal information into an iPad while her best friend, Katie Woody, 16, watches Nov. 15 during the MTSU True Blue Tour student reception at the Sloan Convention Center in Bowling Green, Ky. Jones’ name was later drawn to win an iPad, and MTSU President Sidney A. McPhee also gave her a $500 legacy scholarship. Jones and Woody are sophomores in the Barren Area Virtual and Expanded Learning homeschool organization.


True Blue Tour 2016: Education degree wins Crockett County senior

Nov. 11, 2016

JACKSON, Tenn. — One member of the Curl family in Bells, Tennessee, already attends MTSU. Adam Curl is a sophomore computer science major in the College of Basic and Applied Sciences.

A second family member, Hannah Curl, plans to join her brother on the Murfreesboro, Tennessee, campus starting in fall 2017, but in a totally different major: a secondary education degree from the College of Education.

Dr. Lana Seivers, left, dean of the MTSU College of Education, shares information about her college with Hannah Curl, 17, and her father, Keith Curl, both from Bells, Tenn. Hannah Curl is a senior at Crockett County High School. Their conversation occurred during the Nov. 10 True Blue Tour visit to Jackson. Hannah Curl’s brother, Adam, is a computer science major at MTSU. (MTSU photos by Randy Weiler)

Dr. Lana Seivers, left, dean of the MTSU College of Education, shares information about her college with Hannah Curl, 17, and her father, Keith Curl, both from Bells, Tenn. Hannah Curl is a senior at Crockett County High School. Their conversation occurred during the Nov. 10 True Blue Tour visit to Jackson. Hannah Curl’s brother, Adam, is a computer science major at MTSU. (MTSU photos by Randy Weiler)

Hannah, 17, a Crockett County High School senior, and her parents, Charlotte and Keith Curl, were joined by 105 students and about 300 people altogether attending the annual Jackson True Blue Tour to recruit high school and community college students from Madison and surrounding counties Nov. 10 at the Jackson Country Club.

Jackson was the ninth stop on the 11-city True Blue Tour to recruit students for 2017 and beyond. MTSU travels from Memphis to Johnson City in Tennessee, and also journeys to Atlanta, Huntsville, Alabama, and Bowling Green and Louisville, Kentucky.

The Curls met at length with Dr. Lana Seivers, the College of Education dean. Hannah Curl has applied and been accepted by the university.

“The campus is beautiful. The whole atmosphere is welcoming,” Curl said. She is choosing education because “I want to be a history teacher, mainly for high school.”

In addition to Crockett County, among the schools represented at the evening reception were Chester County, Ripley, Greenfield, North Side and Liberty Technology Magnet and other high schools, and Jackson State Community College.

Earlier in the day, MTSU treated area high school counselors and community college staff to a luncheon as a way of thanking them for sending students to the university.

MTSU offers nearly 150 programs including aerospace technology, business administration, study abroad, physical education, international relations and more.

Interim Provost Mark Byrnes and other administrators and deans from the university’s eight academic colleges, advisers and counselors from the admissions and financial aid offices answer questions from prospective students, transfer students and their parents and guardians during the tour event.

The next preview day will be held Saturday, March 18, 2017. For students who meet the criteria and complete their application for admissions, Dec. 1 is the freshman scholarship deadline.

To learn more about the admissions and recruiting process, call 615-898-2233 or visit http://mtsu.edu/how-to-apply.

To learn about MTSU’s programs, visit www.mtsu.edu/programs.

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

Doug Adams, left, pre-professional adviser for the MTSU College of Basic and Applied Sciences, uses a tablet to show the Henning family of Oakfield, Tennessee, how to find programs Treasure Henning IV, second from right, may select if he chooses to come to MTSU. Also attending the MTSU True Blue Tour event Nov. 10 at the Jackson Country Club are Treasure Henning III and Paula Henning. Their son is a North Side High School senior.

Doug Adams, left, pre-professional adviser for the MTSU College of Basic and Applied Sciences, uses a tablet to show the Henning family of Oakfield, Tennessee, how to find programs Treasure Henning IV, second from right, may select if he chooses to come to MTSU. Also attending the MTSU True Blue Tour event Nov. 10 at the Jackson Country Club are Treasure Henning III and Paula Henning. Their son is a North Side High School senior.

Alexus Jackson, left, 17, of Jackson, Tenn., a North Side High School senior, receives a T-shirt from Georgette Redmond after confirming her registration at the MTSU True Blue Tour Nov. 10 at the Jackson Country Club. Redmond is an MTSU sophomore speech language pathology major from Memphis, Tenn.

Alexus Jackson, left, 17, of Jackson, Tenn., a North Side High School senior, receives a T-shirt from Georgette Redmond after confirming her registration at the MTSU True Blue Tour Nov. 10 at the Jackson Country Club. Redmond is an MTSU sophomore speech language pathology major from Memphis, Tenn.


True Blue Tour 2016: MTSU courts caring Memphis student, peers

Nov. 10, 2016

CORDOVA, Tenn. — Overton High School senior Tearia Dowdy apparently wants to soak up all she can about Middle Tennessee State University.

The Memphis, Tennessee, resident attended an MTSU True Blue Tour event Nov. 9 for the third straight year. As a sophomore and junior in 2014-15, she attended with Girlzlife Empowerment Program mentor Vicki Brown.

MTSU admissions counselor and West Tennessee recruiter Caitlin Sadler, left, provides information to Tearia Dowdy, 17, a senior at Overton High School in Memphis, Tenn., Nov. 9 during the True Blue Tour stop in Cordova, Tenn. (MTSU photos by Randy Weiler)

MTSU admissions counselor and West Tennessee recruiter Caitlin Sadler, left, provides information to Tearia Dowdy, 17, a senior at Overton High School in Memphis, Tenn., Nov. 9 during the True Blue Tour stop in Cordova, Tenn. (MTSU photos by Randy Weiler)

Memphis and Shelby County were the eighth stop on the recruiting tour as the university crosses Tennessee and also travels to Atlanta, Huntsville, Alabama, and Bowling Green and Louisville, Kentucky, in search of prospective students for 2017 and beyond.

One of MTSU’s largest recruiting events to date — 287 prospective students and 671 guests altogether —the Memphis event was held at Esplanade Memphis in Cordova. Dowdy and mentored peers were among those attending.

Dowdy recently applied to MTSU, one of her top choices for a college “because of the people and positive environment,” she said. After considering fashion design, she plans to pursue psychology and eventually move into social work with a dream of one day “owning my own advocacy center for abused women and children.”

“I’m everybody’s best friend. I am always wanting to help people,” said Dowdy, who added she recently comforted a fellow Overton High student who was crying in the school cafeteria. “I told her she needed to be strong because that’s who you are.”

Among those attending the Memphis recruiting event were students from Collierville, Cordova, Brighton, Fayette-Ware and other high schools. Along with Overton, other Memphis schools included White Station, Melrose, Central, Southwind, Craigmont and others.

Interim Provost Mark Byrnes and other administrators and deans from the university’s eight academic colleges, advisers and counselors from the admissions and financial aid offices answer questions from prospective students, transfer students and their parents and guardians at the tour.

The next preview day will be held Saturday, March 18, 2017. For students who meet the criteria and complete their application for admissions, Dec. 1 is the freshman scholarship deadline.

To learn more about the admissions and recruiting process, call 615-898-2233 or visit http://mtsu.edu/how-to-apply/.

To learn about MTSU’s programs, visit http://www.mtsu.edu/programs/index.php.

Next up on the 2016 True Blue Tour: A Thursday, Nov. 10, visit to Jackson. Walk-ups are welcome to the 6 p.m. student reception. A luncheon was held for counselors and community college staff earlier in the day.

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

Denarius Stinson, an MTSU senior from Memphis, Tenn., gives a T-shirt to prospective student Mikaylah McClore, 16, a junior at Central High School, as her mother, Megin Bridgemon, watches Nov. 9 during the True Blue Tour reception at Esplanade Memphis in Cordova, Tenn. Stinson is the 2016 homecoming king and political science major. (MTSU photo by Randy Weiler)

Denarius Stinson, an MTSU senior from Memphis, Tenn., gives a T-shirt to prospective student Mikaylah McClore, 16, a junior at Central High School, as her mother, Megin Bridgemon, watches Nov. 9 during the True Blue Tour reception at Esplanade Memphis in Cordova, Tenn. Stinson is the 2016 homecoming king and political science major.

 

Jody Jonakin, 27, left, a sophomore at Dyersburg State Community College’s Memphis, Tenn., campus, and his wife, Rachel Tarantino, review the MTSU scholarship guide Nov. 9 during the MTSU True Blue Tour student reception at Esplanade Memphis in Cordova, Tenn. Jonakin plans to study business.

Jody Jonakin, 27, left, a sophomore at Dyersburg State Community College’s Memphis, Tenn., campus, and his wife, Rachel Tarantino, review the MTSU scholarship guide Nov. 9 during the MTSU True Blue Tour student reception at Esplanade Memphis in Cordova, Tenn. Jonakin plans to study business.


True Blue Tour 2016: MTSU prospect’s persistence pays off

Nov. 2, 2016

NASHVILLE, Tenn. — Riverside Christian Academy senior Hunterland Meeks of Fayetteville, Tennessee, must love MTSU’s True Blue Tour.

After all, he has been to three of the tour stops so far — Huntsville, Alabama, and Franklin and Nashville, Tennessee — and has given away as much scholarship money as he has won while attending the student recruitment events.

Heather Matthews, left, 17, of Franklin, Tenn., a senior at Centennial High School in Franklin, learns about teaching at the elementary school level from College of Education Dean Lana Seivers Nov. 1 during the True Blue Tour visit in Nashville at the Renaissance Hotel. (MTSU photos by Randy Weiler)

Heather Matthews, left, 17, of Franklin, Tenn., a senior at Centennial High School in Franklin, learns about teaching at the elementary school level from College of Education Dean Lana Seivers Nov. 1 during the True Blue Tour visit in Nashville at the Renaissance Hotel. (MTSU photos by Randy Weiler)

Planned by the MTSU Admissions Office, Nashville was the seventh stop for the 11-city tour, which crosses Tennessee and also travels to Atlanta, Huntsville, Alabama, and Bowling Green and Louisville, Kentucky.

Meeks arrived toward the end of the Oct. 11 Huntsville event at the U.S. Space & Rocket Center. While there, he was able to meet Jeff Bonner, the 2015-16 Distinguished Alumnus and retired U.S. Army colonel, who provided “really great life advice.”

Hunterland Meeks

Hunterland Meeks

“Always make yourself a five-year plan,” Meeks said of Bonner’s wisdom. “Whenever you reach that goal, go to a different five-year plan. Mr. Bonner told me I really need to get involved in the programs at MTSU so I went to the Williamson County True Blue Tour event.”

“As soon as I walked in, I met Dr. (Sidney A.) McPhee (MTSU president) and talked to him about how impressed I was with the campus,” Meeks added. “He told me I was very articulate and asked me to speak. I told him I would. I spoke and he gave me a $1,000 scholarship.”

Regarding what he shared, Meeks said, “I told everybody I had toured campus and went from undecided to knowing where I am going to spend my college years — and I was definitely True Blue.”

Meeks said he was attracted to MTSU “as soon as I stepped foot on the campus for the tour. It was kind of funny because I had been to Murfreesboro so many times for ball tournaments or just going out to eat at Demos’, but I did not see myself going to school at MTSU. … That changed when I got inside the buildings, met a bunch of friendly people and, most of all, learned MTSU is a very dignified university. … It is amazing and second to none.”

Martin Luther King High School seniors Caitlyn Gillespie, left, 17, and Deshaun Diggs, 18, review information about the MTSU School of Nursing program Nov. 1 during the Nashville True Blue Tour stop in Nashville.

Martin Luther King High School seniors Caitlyn Gillespie, left, 17, and Deshaun Diggs, 18, review information about the MTSU School of Nursing program Nov. 1 during the Nashville True Blue Tour stop in Nashville.

At the Oct. 26 Franklin event, Meeks told his parents, MTSU alumni Melissia and Tim Meeks, he needed to go to the Nashville True Blue Tour event Nov. 1. This time, he came with his grandfather, Jerry Schmidt, a Vietnam veteran.

“I came and talked to Dr. McPhee again,” Meeks said. “He said if I wanted to speak again, I could.”

To the crowd of 165 prospective students and nearly 350 people altogether, Meeks “gave the same speech I gave in Williamson County. He (McPhee) congratulated me when I walked off the stage.”

At one point at the Renaissance Nashville Hotel, McPhee told everybody who wore MTSU clothing — showing their True Blue spirit — to come forward. Meeks was one of eight who did and the president awarded them $100 Phillips Bookstore gift cards.

McPhee also awards $500 and $1,000 scholarships during drawings at the tour events. For his Nashville finale drawing — a $2,000 scholarship — Meeks’ name was drawn.

Since Meeks, who plans to study leisure, sport and tourism, already had received one scholarship, McPhee asked him if he wanted to keep the $2,000 award or give it to another student. Meeks chose to give it away.

Mother-and-daughter Latanya Smith, left, and Jasmine Watts, 16, a junior at Martin Luther King High School listen as Jon Buchalski, an adviser in the MTSU College of Basic and Applied Sciences, discusses the pre-pharmacy program. The talked Nov. 1 during the annual MTSU True Blue Tour visit to Nashville. (MTSU photo by Randy Weiler)

Mother-and-daughter Latanya Smith, left, and Jasmine Watts, 16, a junior at Martin Luther King High School listen as Jon Buchalski, an adviser in the MTSU College of Basic and Applied Sciences, discusses the pre-pharmacy program. The talked Nov. 1 during the annual MTSU True Blue Tour visit to Nashville. (MTSU photo by Randy Weiler)

“I’m a devout Christian,” Meeks said of his decision. “Anybody would’ve thought about it and given it away. He gave me the chance to give it away and I was truly grateful for that.”

Dr. Deb Sells, vice president of Student Affairs and vice provost of Enrollment and Academic Services, stepped forward and said $1,000 would be added to Meeks’ first scholarship to bring his award to $2,000 as well.

MTSU holds a second Fall Preview Day Saturday, Nov. 5, and a Spring Preview Day Saturday, March 18, both starting at 8 a.m. in the Student Union.

Thursday, Dec. 1, is the deadline for prospective freshmen to apply and be considered for major scholarships if they meet all scholarship criteria and complete the application process.

For more about admissions, visit http://mtsu.edu/how-to-apply/ or call 615-898-2233. To learn about MTSU’s 140-plus programs, visit http://www.mtsu.edu/programs/index.php.

Next stops on the 2016 True Blue Tour: MTSU travels Wednesday, Nov. 9, to the Memphis area for an 11:30 a.m. luncheon for counselors/community college staff and a 6 p.m. student reception, with both events at Esplande Memphis, 901 Cordova Station Ave., in Cordova; and an 11:30 a.m. counselor luncheon and 6 p.m. student reception Thursday, Nov. 10, at the Jackson Country Club, 31 Jackson Country Club Lane. To register, visit http://www.mtsu.edu/schedule-a-visit/special-events.php.

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

An excited Nashville crowd of teenagers waits for MTSU President Sidney A. McPhee to award another scholarship Nov. 1 during the True Blue Tour visit at the Renaissance Nashville Hotel.

An excited Nashville crowd of teenagers waits for MTSU President Sidney A. McPhee to award another scholarship Nov. 1 during the True Blue Tour visit at the Renaissance Nashville Hotel.


True Blue Tour 2016: Williamson County, MTSU partnership blooms

Oct. 26, 2016

FRANKLIN, Tenn. — Middle Tennessee State University just ventured to nearby Williamson County for the second time, taking its True Blue Tour on the road to meet directly with prospective students and their parents Wednesday, Oct. 26, at the Franklin Marriott Cool Springs.

It’s also the second year of a dual enrollment partnership between MTSU and Williamson County Schools. And the relationship — Williamson students receiving both high school and college credit for courses they are taking — is a solid success.

MT One Stop enrollment coordinator Dustin Ritchey, left, answers questions from Sophia Teap, 17, a senior at Summit High School in Spring Hill, Tenn., Oct. 26, as her mother, Sophorn Chhun, listens. The exchange occurred during the MTSU’s True Blue Tour visit to Franklin at the Marriott Cool Springs. The MT One Stop houses admissions, financial aid and bursar’s office where students pay tuition fees. (MTSU photo by Randy Weiler)

MT One Stop enrollment coordinator Dustin Ritchey, left, answers questions from Sophia Teap, 17, a senior at Summit High School in Spring Hill, Tenn., Oct. 26, as her mother, Sophorn Chhun, listens. The exchange occurred during the MTSU’s True Blue Tour visit to Franklin at the Marriott Cool Springs. The MT One Stop houses admissions, financial aid and bursar’s office where students pay tuition fees. (MTSU photos by Randy Weiler)

More than 80 students and nearly 200 people altogether attended the Franklin True Blue Tour event. Franklin and Williamson County marked the sixth stop on the tour as the university travels across the state and also to Atlanta, Huntsville, Alabama, and Bowling Green and Louisville, Kentucky.

Dual enrollment for MTSU and Williamson County has grown to 164 students in Year 2 after achieving 91 in the 2015-16 academic year, MTSU dual enrollment officials said.

Forty-eight Brentwood High School students are taking business management, programming and logic II and broadcasting classes.

“I think it has been incredibly successful,” said Michele Fuller, a Brentwood High counselor. “I think it will continue to grow. Students can get both college and high school credit. I would definitely encourage it (students taking dual enrollment).”

Dr. Charles Farmer, assistant superintendent for secondary schools in Williamson County and son of former MTSU accounting professor Larry Farmer, said the benefits of the MTSU classes “certainly focus specifically on giving opportunities they (students) may not have otherwise.”

“It’s a great opportunity for the kids who participate in college-level courses so they will be more successful when they walk onto your campus,” Farmer added.

Heather Fitzhugh, a counselor at Independence High School in Thompson’s Station, said criminal justice, digital art and computer-aided engineering classes were offered in Year 1. Photography and engineering classes are offered this fall.

“We try to promote it,” Fitzhugh said. “It’s a great way for them to focus on areas of interest, ones they might want to pursue as a career. They don’t have to commute; they get (college and high school) credit for class in our building.”

Independence senior Sarah Zakaria, 17, who has been accepted into the MTSU Honors College and plans to major in mechatronics engineering, spent one month this summer commuting to Murfreesboro for a dual enrollment chemistry class.

Dr. Philip Phillips, right, associate dean for the MTSU Honors College, points out information in the college’s brochures to Sarah Zakaria as her father, Radwan Zakaria, listens Oct. 26 during the university’s True Blue Tour at the Franklin Marriott Cool Springs. Zakaria is a senior at Independence High School in Spring Hill.

Dr. Philip Phillips, right, associate dean for the MTSU Honors College, points out information in the college’s brochures to Sarah Zakaria as her father, Radwan Zakaria, listens Oct. 26 during the university’s True Blue Tour at the Franklin Marriott Cool Springs. Zakaria is a senior at Independence High School in Spring Hill.

“It was great,” Zakaria said of the dual enrollment opportunity. “I was really intimidated at first. I was the youngest, but eventually all of the other students came to me for help.”

She plans to apply for an Honors College Buchanan Fellowship — the top scholarship available — and her name was drawn for a $1,000 scholarship.

In all, 17 MTSU classes are available to students at Independence, Centennial, Ravenwood, Brentwood, Page, Franklin and Summit high schools.

MTSU dual enrollment coordinator Matt Hannah said there’s a growing interest from MTSU departments “on collaboration — bringing them to campus and making sure there is a connection with MTSU through a variety of hands-on events.”

To be eligible for the dual enrollment program, which is a part of the University College, students must:

  • Be a high school junior or senior.
  • Have a minimum 3.0 high school GPA of a minimum composite of 22 on the ACT or 1020 on the SAT, or equivalent ACT plan test score. To learn more, call 615-898-5246, email dualenrollment@mtsu.edu or visit www.mtsu.edu/dualenrollment.

During the tour student receptions, MTSU President Sidney A. McPhee, interim Provost Mark Byrnes, deans from the eight academic colleges, advisers, admissions and MT One Stop personnel and others answer questions and share information with attendees.

Up next for the 2016 True Blue Tour: MTSU travels Tuesday, Nov. 1, to Nashville for two events at the Renaissance Nashville Hotel, 611 Commerce St. The student reception begins at 6:30 p.m. A luncheon for high school counselors begins at 11:30 that morning. To register, visit www.mtsu.edu/schedule-a-visit/special-events.php.

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

MTSU President Sidney A. McPhee, left, shares a laugh with John Rall, 17, of Brentwood, Tenn., and a Ravenwood High School senior Oct. 26 during the True Blue Tour recruiting event at the Franklin Marriott Cool Springs. Rall has applied but not officially been accepted, and plans to study logistics in the Jennings A. Jones College of Business. He came with his sister, Zoe Rall, a May graduate of MTSU in organizational communication.

MTSU President Sidney A. McPhee, left, shares a laugh with John Rall, 17, of Brentwood, Tenn., and a Ravenwood High School senior Oct. 26 during the True Blue Tour recruiting event at the Franklin Marriott Cool Springs. Rall has applied but not officially been accepted, and plans to study logistics in the Jennings A. Jones College of Business. He came with his sister, Zoe Rall, a May graduate of MTSU in organizational communication.

WAKM radio owner Tom Lawrence, left, MTSU President Sidney A. McPhee and City of Franklin Mayor Ken Moore visit before the start of the True Blue Tour student reception Oct. 26 at the Franklin Marriott Cool Springs. (MTSU photo by Randy Weiler)

WAKM radio owner Tom Lawrence, left, MTSU President Sidney A. McPhee and City of Franklin Mayor Ken Moore visit before the start of the True Blue Tour student reception Oct. 26 at the Franklin Marriott Cool Springs. (MTSU photo by Randy Weiler)


True Blue Tour 2016: Hundreds attend Knoxville recruiting event

Oct. 20, 2016

KNOXVILLE, Tenn. — At part of the site for the 1982 World’s Fair, mother and daughter Judy and Kelli Hurt of Powell, Tennessee, proudly walked into the Middle Tennessee State University True Blue Tour gathering wearing a long-sleeve MTSU T-shirt and a zipper pullover, respectively.

University administrators took notice of the apparel Oct. 19 at The Foundry on the Fair Site.

Mom and daughter purchased the tops at Phillips Bookstore during visits to tour the Murfreesboro campus. The “impression” Kelli Hurt made on MTSU President Sidney A. McPhee landed her a $1,000 scholarship and an iPad if she becomes a Blue Raider.

One of the largest True Blue Tour crowds thus far gathered for this recruiting trip to East Tennessee with several hundred prospective students and family members on hand, and twice as many attending in Knoxville as did in 2015. Knoxville marked the fifth stop on the tour as the university travels statewide and also to Atlanta, Huntsville, Alabama, and Bowling Green and Louisville, Kentucky.

Hayley Greenlee, left, area coordinator in MTSU Housing and Residential Life, offers advice on potential on-campus housing options to Judy Hurt and her daughter, Kelli, 17, a senior at Powell High School. They talked Oct. 19 during the university’s True Blue Tour event at The Foundry on the Fair Site in Knoxville. (MTSU photo by Randy Weiler)

Hayley Greenlee, left, area coordinator in MTSU Housing and Residential Life, offers advice on potential on-campus housing options to Judy Hurt and her daughter, Kelli, 17, a senior at Powell High School. They talked Oct. 19 during the university’s True Blue Tour event at The Foundry on the Fair Site in Knoxville. (MTSU photo by Randy Weiler)

Kelli Hurt, 17, a Powell High School senior, said she is interested in studying athletic training.

“It’s very competitive,” she said. “I like the challenge you get and, ultimately, it’s my dream degree.”

The Hurt family has toured MTSU twice. They also came for the 2015 Blue Raider-Vanderbilt football game. Kelli Hurt said she liked the campus a lot and finds it very open.

When not studying, she is captain of the tennis team, president of the Health Occupational Student Association, active in Young Life and interacted and observed the Powell High athletic trainer.

If athletic training is Hurt’s dream major, then MTSU is Tattiana Lopez’s “dream college.”

The 17-year-old Clinton High School senior discussed the forensic science program with College of Basic and Applied Sciences adviser Eric Miller. The Tennessean also talked to military science recruiting operations officer John Bautch about the ROTC program.

During the tour student receptions, McPhee, interim Provost Mark Byrnes, deans from the eight academic colleges, advisers, admissions and MT One Stop personnel and others answer questions and share information with attendees.

The events are free, but students should register in advance at www.mtsu.edu/schedule-a-visit/special-events.php.

To learn more about MTSU’s 150 programs, visit www.mtsu.edu/programs. For admissions information, call 615-898-2233 or visit http://mtsu.edu/how-to-apply.

Next up on the True Blue Tour: MTSU goes to Franklin Wednesday, Oct. 26, to entertain counselors and community college staff with an 11:30 a.m. luncheon and hosts a student reception at 6 p.m. The Williamson County events will be held in the Franklin Marriott Cool Springs, 700 Cool Springs Blvd.

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

MTSU President Sidney A. McPhee visits with an attendee as the nearly overflow crowd at the True Blue Tour stop in Knoxville, Tenn., watches. The event was held Oct. 19 at The Foundry on the Fair Site. (MTSU photo by John Goodwin)

MTSU President Sidney A. McPhee visits with an attendee as the nearly overflow crowd at the True Blue Tour stop in Knoxville, Tenn., watches. The event was held Oct. 19 at The Foundry on the Fair Site. (MTSU photo by John Goodwin)

Mary Jones, left, and her daughter, Alexis, 17, a senior at L&N STEM Academy in Knoxville, Tenn., listen as MTSU College of Behavioral and Health Sciences adviser Bonnie McCarty presents information about the School of Nursing program Oct. 19 during the annual True Blue Tour visit to Knoxville at The Foundry on the Fair Site. (MTSU photo by Randy Weiler)

Mary Jones, left, and her daughter, Alexis, 17, a senior at L&N STEM Academy in Knoxville, Tenn., listen as MTSU College of Behavioral and Health Sciences adviser Bonnie McCarty presents information about the School of Nursing program Oct. 19 during the annual True Blue Tour visit to Knoxville at The Foundry on the Fair Site. (MTSU photo by Randy Weiler)

Tattiana Lopez, 17, right, a Clinton High School senior, shows her father, Orvin Lopez, and sister, Ta’teouynia Lopez, 11, a sunglass or cell phone holder she picked up Oct. 19 at the MTSU True Blue Tour. The event was held at The Foundry on the Fair Site in Knoxville. (MTSU photo by Randy Weiler)

Tattiana Lopez, 17, right, a Clinton High School senior, shows her father, Orvin Lopez, and sister, Ta’teouynia Lopez, 11, a sunglass or cell phone holder she picked up Oct. 19 at the MTSU True Blue Tour. The event was held at The Foundry on the Fair Site in Knoxville. (MTSU photo by Randy Weiler)


True Blue Tour 2016: Tri-Cities-area students sold on MTSU

Oct. 19, 2016

JOHNSON CITY, Tenn. — Leigh De Ball is 99 percent certain her daughter Margaret will attend MTSU starting in fall 2017.

Based on the passion exhibited by father-and-son Scott and Caleb Hamilton in front of the large crowd attending the MTSU True Blue Tour Oct. 17 at The Millennium Centre, they may have pushed it beyond the 100 percent level if that’s possible.

Hayley Greenlee, left, area coordinator in MTSU Housing and Residential Life, provides information to Margaret De Ball and her mother, Leigh, both of Greeneville, Tennessee, Oct. 18 at the MTSU True Blue Tour at The Millennium Centre in Johnson City.Margaret De Ball is a senior at Greenville High School. (MTSU photo by Randy Weiler)

Hayley Greenlee, left, area coordinator in MTSU Housing and Residential Life, provides information to Margaret De Ball and her mother, Leigh, both of Greeneville, Tennessee, Oct. 18 at the MTSU True Blue Tour at The Millennium Centre in Johnson City.Margaret De Ball is a senior at Greenville High School. (MTSU photos by Randy Weiler)

Johnson City served as the fifth stopover for the True Blue Tour, MTSU’s annual trek across Tennessee and also to Atlanta, Huntsville, Alabama, and in November, to Bowling Green and Louisville, Kentucky, to recruit prospective students.

Having spoken to both the De Ball and Hamilton families before taking the stage, university President Sidney A. McPhee asked them to share their feelings about MTSU, which is more than 250 miles from their hometowns.

Scott and Caleb Hamilton and Margaret De Ball obliged, and they came away owing $1,000 less for college as McPhee presented them a $1,000 scholarship.

“MTSU is just amazing. There’s no other way to describe it,” said Caleb Hamilton, 17, a senior at Sullivan South High School in Kingsport who expressed an interest in studying health science or forensics. “I love how personal the staff is for me as a student. They call you by your name.”

The Hamiltons praised MTSU’s buildings, both old and new, and how beautiful the campus is to the eye. They spoke volumes about a female member of the Blue Elite campus tour team — a “true ambassador” for MTSU.

Margaret De Ball’s dream is to own a bookstore and she believes MTSU’s business entrepreneurship program is exactly what she is looking for to make it a reality.

“I love everything about it,” said De Ball, 17, a senior from Greeneville High School who has applied and been accepted to MTSU. “They have the major I want and the campus is gorgeous. … I visited another school, but when I stepped on the MTSU campus, I knew that was where I wanted to go. It felt like home to me.”

Next stop for the True Blue Tour: Knoxville, Wednesday, Oct. 19, for a student reception at 6 p.m. To register to attend, visit http://www.mtsu.edu/schedule-a-visit/special-events.php.

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

Renee Robbins, left, an adviser with the MTSU College of Behavioral and Health Sciences, discusses the psychology and other programs with Infiniti Bristol, 17, a senior at Dobyns-Bennett High School in Kingsport, as her mother, Cassy Bristol, listens.

Renee Robbins, left, an adviser with the MTSU College of Behavioral and Health Sciences, discusses the psychology and other programs with Infiniti Bristol, 17, a senior at Dobyns-Bennett High School in Kingsport, as her mother, Cassy Bristol, listens.

Dodge Harlan, 17, right, a senior at Tennessee High School in Bristol, and his mother, Julie Harlan, discuss the education abroad opportunities should he consider Middle Tennessee State University Oct. 18 at The Millennium Centre in Johnson City. MTSU held its annual True Blue Tour to recruit students from the Tri-Cities area.

Dodge Harlan, 17, right, a senior at Tennessee High School in Bristol, and his mother, Julie Harlan, discuss the education abroad opportunities should he consider Middle Tennessee State University Oct. 18 at The Millennium Centre in Johnson City. MTSU held its annual True Blue Tour to recruit students from the Tri-Cities area.

Science Hill High School junior Aysha Redford, 16, and her mother Malaika Perry, both of Johnson City, listen as MTSU’s Renee Robbins, an adviser in the College of Behavioral and Health Sciences, discusses the School of Nursing program at the university. (MTSU photo by Randy Weiler)

Science Hill High School junior Aysha Redford, 16, and her mother Malaika Perry, both of Johnson City, listen as MTSU’s Renee Robbins, an adviser in the College of Behavioral and Health Sciences, discusses the School of Nursing program at the university.

 


True Blue Tour 2016: MTSU experiences growth in Huntsville

Oct. 13, 2016

HUNTSVILLE, Ala. — MTSU’s True Blue Tour visit to Huntsville, Alabama, continued an upward trend in Year 2 of out-of-state stops.

With the backdrop of the U.S. Space & Rocket Center as the venue site, the numbers doubled from the first-year trip to Huntsville in 2015.

Audrey Rich, left, and her son, Jabraun, of New Market, Ala., listen as MTSU senior recruiter Heather Blanton shares admissions information Oct. 11 at the True Blue Tour recruiting event at the U.S. Space & Rocket Center in Huntsville. (MTSU photo by Randy Weiler)

Audrey Rich, left, and her son, Jabraun, of New Market, Ala., listen as MTSU senior recruiter Heather Blanton shares admissions information Oct. 11 at the True Blue Tour recruiting event at the U.S. Space & Rocket Center in Huntsville. (MTSU photos by Randy Weiler)

MTSU hits the road to take the university from Memphis to Johnson City in Tennessee and also recruiting prospective students from Atlanta, Huntsville and Bowling Green and Louisville, Kentucky.

“The response from counselors, parents and future students was overwhelming,” said Linda Olsen, undergraduate recruitment director, talking about the Alabama stop in Huntsville Oct. 11.

“More school counselors along with two members of the district staff and twice as many students attended Tuesday’s events as compared to last year in Huntsville. … Some of the top students in the Huntsville area were in attendance Tuesday night and have already designated MTSU as their first choice for college enrollment.”

Students came from Madison County High School, Buckhorn High, various Huntsville city schools, Hartselle and others in Alabama. They also came from Lawrence, Lincoln and Franklin county high schools in neighboring southern Middle Tennessee.

“Many of our guests commented on how much they enjoyed meeting the president (Sidney A. McPhee), interim provost (Mark Byrnes) and deans,” Olsen said. “They were impressed that top university administrators took the time to bring information closer to home.”

Counselors from Grissom, Lee, Jemison, Columbia and James Clemens high schools and Madison City Schools were among those attending the counselors’ luncheon.

Fifteen alumni — including 2015-16 Distinguished Alumnus Jeff Bonner and Huntsville-area media personalities Jerry Hayes and Chris Davis from WHNT-TV, Jonathan Radford from WAFF-TV and Carla Fields from WAAY-TV — attended the event.

On deck for the True Blue tour: MTSU travels to Johnson City Tuesday, Oct. 18, and Knoxville Wednesday, Oct. 19, to recruit students from those areas.

High school and community college students and counselors, as well as parents, can register to attend any free MTSU Admissions events by going to http://www.mtsu.edu/schedule-a-visit/special-events.php.

Preview days are scheduled for Saturday, Nov. 5, and Saturday, March 18, 2017, both starting at 8 a.m. in the Student Union.

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

Laurie Witherow, left, associate vice provost for Student Affairs, talks about Middle Tennessee State University program opportunities with Kristi McHugh and her son, Brantley, of Gurley, Ala., during the True Blue Tour Recruiting visit to Huntsville, Ala., Oct. 11. Brantley McHugh, 16, is a junior at Madison County High School in nearby Gurley.

Laurie Witherow, left, associate vice provost for Student Affairs, talks about Middle Tennessee State University program opportunities with Kristi McHugh and her son, Brantley, of Gurley, Ala., during the True Blue Tour Recruiting visit to Huntsville, Ala., Oct. 11. Brantley McHugh, 16, is a junior at Madison County High School in nearby Gurley.

MTSU College of Basic and Applied Sciences pre-professional adviser Doug Adams, left, listens as Tanya Alexander, right, of Hartselle. Ala., poses questions about the program. The exchange occurred Oct. 11 during the True Blue Tour visit to Huntsville. Also listening Karly Alexander and her father, Brian Alexander. (MTSU photo by Randy Weiler)

MTSU College of Basic and Applied Sciences pre-professional adviser Doug Adams, left, listens as Tanya Alexander, right, of Hartselle. Ala., poses questions about the program. The exchange occurred Oct. 11 during the True Blue Tour visit to Huntsville. Also listening Karly Alexander and her father, Brian Alexander.

Trey Kirris, foreground left, of Lawrenceburg, Tenn., writes requested information as Kristen Ray and her mother, Christy Ray, visit with MTSU undergraduate recruiting director Linda Olsen, right, Oct. 11 during the university’s True Blue Tour event at the U.S. Space & Rocket Center in Huntsville, Ala. Kirris, 15, is a sophomore and Kristen Ray, 16, is a junior at Lawrence County High School.

Trey Kirris, foreground left, of Lawrenceburg, Tenn., writes requested information as Kristen Ray and her mother, Christy Ray, visit with MTSU undergraduate recruiting director Linda Olsen, right, Oct. 11 during the university’s True Blue Tour event at the U.S. Space & Rocket Center in Huntsville, Ala. Kirris, 15, is a sophomore and Kristen Ray, 16, is a junior at Lawrence County High School.

 


True Blue Tour 2016: Georgia senior definitely has MTSU on his mind

Oct. 7, 2016

ATLANTA — Georgia high school senior Andrew Serrero is in a bit of a higher education quandary.

The Grayson High School student is considering two in-state schools, but Serrero also loves the thought of being in Middle Tennessee State University’s Band of Blue with several of his Peach State friends and pursuing the university’s music industry program that potentially could mean in-state tuition through the Academic Common Market option.

Vanessa Roark, 18, right, a senior at Douglas County High School in Douglasville, Ga., shares a laugh with MTSU Education Abroad coordinator Melissa Miller and Mike Novak, assistant director of the Confucius Institute, during the Oct. 5 Atlanta True Blue Tour stop at the Crowne Plaza Hotel in Dunwoody, Ga. (MTSU photo by Randy Weiler)

Vanessa Roark, 18, right, a senior at Douglas County High School in Douglasville, Ga., shares a laugh with MTSU Education Abroad coordinator Melissa Miller and Mike Novak, assistant director of the Confucius Institute, during the Oct. 5 Atlanta True Blue Tour stop at the Crowne Plaza Hotel in Dunwoody, Ga. (MTSU photo by Randy Weiler)

Serrero and his mother, Beth Volpert-Johansen, were among more than 90 people attending the student reception for MTSU’s True Blue Tour recruiting trip to Atlanta Oct. 5.

Atlanta was the second stop on the 11-city tour to entertain prospective students, their families and high school counselors and community college staff. The events were held at the Crowne Plaza Atlanta Perimeter at Ravina in Dunwoody, Georgia, an Atlanta suburb in DeKalb County.

“I really want to study music business,” said Serrero, 17, who lives in Grayson, Georgia. “The Academic Common Market would provide in-state tuition and (the program) is not available anywhere in Georgia.”

The Academic Common Market, or ACM, is a tuition savings program allowing residents of participating states to qualify for in-state tuition for unique academic majors not offered in their home state. The Southern Regional Education Board coordinates the program.

For Georgia students, Academic Common Market programs at MTSU include:

  • Aerospace.
  • The horse science concentration in animal science.
  • Concrete Industry Management.
  • Video and film production in electronic media communication.
  • Forensic science.
  • The music industry concentration in the School of Music.
  • Industrial/organizational psychology.
  • Audio production, commercial songwriting and music business in recording industry.

For more on the Academic Common Market, visit http://www.mtsu.edu/acm/. MTSU also shared about the Regional Scholars Program for select Georgia and other out-of-state students who live within 250 of the Murfreesboro campus and meet academic requirements. For more information, visit http://www.mtsu.edu/financial-aid/scholarships/regional-scholars.php.

Andrew Serrero

Andrew Serrero

Serrero, who plays in his school’s marching band, visited the MTSU campus last fall, attending Careers in Music Day. He plans a return visit.

Former Grayson High classmate Tre Wood and Cullen Levesque and Connor McGill, whom he met at the Atlanta CV Drum and Bugle Corps, play in the 300-member Band of Blue.

“They’re my style (of band),” Serrero said, adding that MTSU “is a nice school and even though it is a big campus, I felt like I meshed with everyone while I was there.”

Further enticing Serrero — drum captain at his school and a Georgia-ranked swimmer — were winning an iPad and a $500 scholarship at the student reception.

The tour continues Tuesday, Oct. 11, at the U.S. Space & Rocket Center in Huntsville, Alabama.

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

MTSU College of Media and Entertainment adviser Lucille Wilcox, foreground right, gathers printed material about her college’s departments for Jasmine Foster, left, and Deandre Williams at the True Blue Tour Atlanta recruiting event Oct. 5 in Dunwoody, Ga., near Atlanta. (MTSU photo by Rob Janson)

MTSU College of Media and Entertainment adviser Lucille Wilcox, foreground right, gathers printed material about her college’s departments for Jasmine Foster, left, and Deandre Williams at the True Blue Tour Atlanta recruiting event Oct. 5 in Dunwoody, Ga., near Atlanta. (MTSU photo by Rob Janson)

As others attending the True Blue Tour in Atlanta take information off the table, MTSU School of Music Lecturer Chris Combest, left, shares details about his department’s various programs Oct. 5 with a group at the Crowne Plaza Hotel in Dunwoody, Ga. (MTSU photo by Rob Janson)

As others attending the True Blue Tour in Atlanta take information off the table, MTSU School of Music Lecturer Chris Combest, left, shares details about his department’s various programs Oct. 5 with a group at the Crowne Plaza Hotel in Dunwoody, Ga. (MTSU photo by Rob Janson)

 


True Blue Tour 2016: Future MTSU students turn out in Chattanooga

Oct. 5, 2016

CHATTANOOGA, Tenn. — A number of future Middle Tennessee State University Blue Raiders walked through the doors of the Chattanooga Convention Center as prospective students attending the university’s True Blue Tour student reception Oct. 4.

Two of them stood out.

Emily Fisher, 17, right, a Chattanooga School for the Arts and Sciences senior, learns about MTSU offerings from university advisers Oct. 4 during the True Blue Tour visit at the Chattanooga Convention Center. (MTSU photo by Rob Janson)

Emily Fisher, 17, right, a Chattanooga School for the Arts and Sciences senior, learns about MTSU offerings from university advisers Oct. 4 during the True Blue Tour visit at the Chattanooga Convention Center. (MTSU photo by Rob Janson)

In fact, Grace Academy senior Ashlyn Powers and Austin Alderholt, president of the Chattanooga State Community College Student Government Association, almost bubbled with excitement. They knew their acceptances from the Murfreesboro university are nearly a reality.

The annual True Blue Tour, an 11-city stop by the university across the state and Southeast, takes MTSU on the road as administrators, academic officials and admissions staff entertain students, their families and area counselors and community college personnel with separate events.

For Chattanooga, nearly 150 students and 326 guests altogether attended.

Exiting the $1.7 million College of Media and Entertainment mobile production truck after a personal tour from Marc Parrish, director of engineering for the Department of Electronic Media Communications, Alderholt proclaimed, “This thing is amazing!”

Alderholt, 19, of Ringgold, Georgia, who has served as managing editor for Chattanooga State’s student newspaper, plans to pursue a bachelor’s degree in multimedia journalism.

He credits Angela McClister, a Chattanooga State media technologies faculty member, mentor and MTSU alumna as his reason for chasing his higher education dream to Murfreesboro. Plus, after visiting the John Bragg Media and Entertainment Building, he said, he “fell in love with it.”

The Tennessee Transfer Pathway will allow Alderholt to attend MTSU with in-state tuition. Alderholt, who also is a musician, spent time with School of Music lecturer Chris Combest during the recruiting event, too.

Powers, 17, of Ooltewah, Tennessee,  is planning an elementary education path and said she’s head over heels with the College of Education.

“Since I was little, I always liked kids,” she said. “I teach children at church. … As I’ve been looking at other colleges, I was really impressed with the (MTSU) education department and know all the things they teach will prepare me to be a teacher.”

Powers, who scored a 30 on her ACT, plans to submit her final paperwork to be considered for a Buchanan Fellowship during a campus visit Friday, Oct. 14. The scholarship,  MTSU’s largest, is administered by the Honors College and named for Dr. James M. Buchanan, a Nobel Prize-winning alumnus.

Advisers from the College of Media and Entertainment, College of Education Dean Lana Seivers and Linda Olsen, first-year director of undergraduate recruitment, noted how impressed they were with the prospects of Powers, Alderholt and others becoming a part of MTSU.

The True Blue Tour travels to Atlanta Wednesday, Oct. 5, for counselor/community college staff luncheon and student reception.

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

MTSU College of Education Dean Lana Seivers, right, shows prospective student Ashlyn Powers, 17, of Ooltewah, Tenn., printed material for educational programs she might want to consider as her parents, Angie and Ron Powers look on. Their meeting occurred Oct. 4 during the True Blue Tour event at the Chattanooga Convention Center. (MTSU photos by Randy Weiler)

MTSU College of Education Dean Lana Seivers, right, shows prospective student Ashlyn Powers, 17, of Ooltewah, Tenn., printed material for educational programs as her parents, Angie and Ron Powers look on. They met Oct. 4 during the True Blue Tour event at the Chattanooga Convention Center. (MTSU photo by Randy Weiler)

Chattanooga State Community College sophomore Austin Alderholt, right, discusses the opportunities the MTSU Electronic Media Communications mobile truck has for students with Marc Parrish, EMC director of engineering, Oct. 4 during the university’s True Blue Tour stop in Chattanooga.

Chattanooga State Community College sophomore Austin Alderholt, right, discusses student opportunities for work on the MTSU Department of Electronic Media Communications mobile truckwith Marc Parrish, EMC director of engineering, Oct. 4 during the university’s True Blue Tour stop in Chattanooga. (MTSU photo by Randy Weiler)

Part of the large turnout for the MTSU True Blue Tour stop in Chattanooga, Tenn., the first leg of the 11-city visit across the state and the Southeast.

Part of the large turnout for the MTSU True Blue Tour stop in Chattanooga, Tenn., the first leg of the 11-city visit across the state and the Southeast. (MTSU photo by Randy Weiler)

 

 

MTSU Flute Choir’s free concert is full of family fun this Saturday

The MTSU Flute Choir will present a free public concert for the entire family Saturday, Nov. 19, in Hinton Hall inside the university’s Wright Music Building.

The MTSU Flute Choir will present a family-friendly, all-ages concert Saturday, Nov. 17, in Hinton Hall featuring all five members of the flute familiy, including this C-foot flute. (Photo courtesy of Petar Milošević/Wikimedia)

The MTSU Flute Choir will present a family-friendly, all-ages concert Saturday, Nov. 17, in Hinton Hall featuring all five members of the flute family, including this C-foot flute. (Photo courtesy of Petar Milošević/Wikimedia)

“This concert is for all ages and is especially appropriate for children of any age,” said Rebecca Murphy, this year’s faculty director for the group, encouraging parents to bring their youngsters “and introduce them to the many beautiful sounds of the flute family.”

A searchable campus map is available at http://tinyurl.com/MTSUParkingMap.

Murphy said the program will include “pieces with narration, music about butterflies and a composition with ‘boomwhackers.’”

The latter are color-coded hollow tubes that are tuned to musical pitches according to length and played by striking them individually against a surface or arranging them together like a xylophone.

The MTSU Flute Choir is an enthusiastic group of flutists that perform a variety of musical styles ranging from baroque, classical and romantic to contemporary, popular and jazz.

School of Music new logo webThe Flute Choir currently includes about 16 musicians and showcases all five members of the flute family: the piccolo, C flute, alto flute, bass flute and contrabass flute.

For details on other MTSU School of Music performances, call 615-898-2493 or visit the School of Music “Concert Calendar” link.

— Gina E. Fann (gina.fann@mtsu.edu)

MTSU partners with Stones River Battlefield for veterans’ stories

Join MTSU in paying tribute to our nation’s veterans by listening to them tell about their personal military experiences on the day after Veterans Day.

“They Fought for Us: Stories of Service” is slated for 1 to 4 p.m. Saturday, Nov. 12, at Stones River National Battlefield, 3501 Old Nashville Highway in Murfreesboro.

The main entrance to the park is at 1563 N. Thompson Lane. The event is free and open to the public.

Staff and students of MTSU’s Albert Gore Research Center will enable the public to hear the oral histories they have recorded for the center’s Veterans History Project. Interested veterans may add their individual histories to the collection at the ceremony.

Louis Kyriakoudes

Louis Kyriakoudes

“Tennesseans have a long and distinguished history of serving in our nation’s military,” said center director Louis Kyriakoudes. “Veterans Day is an opportunity for all of us to remember and honor that service.”

Area vets will bring their sacrifices to life with uniforms, equipment, photographs and other items, and veteran Ernest Newsome will provide musical performances. A member of the 13th United States Colored Infantry living history unit will illuminate the contributions of black soldiers during the Civil War.

MT Veterans Salute logoMembers of MTSU’s Writers Corps will share their original creative writing. The Writers Corps is an informal group of student veterans who express themselves through both poetry and prose and publish an annual literary journal, “DMZ.”

“They Fought for Us: Stories of Service” is being presented by MTSU, the National Park Service, the African-American Heritage Society of Rutherford County and the Friends of Stones River National Battlefield.

For more information, contact the Albert Gore Research Center at 615-898-2632 or the Stones River National Battlefield at 615-893-9501. To listen to the Veterans History Project oral histories, go to https://soundcloud.com/albertgoreresearchcenter.

— Gina Logue (gina.logue@mtsu.edu)

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