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New, returning MTSU student vets invited to Jan. 19 newcomers event

New and returning MTSU student veterans and their families are welcome to attend a “newcomers briefing” provided by the Charlie and Hazel Daniels Veterans and Military Family Center.

The event will be held from 5 to 7 p.m. Thursday, Jan. 19, in Cantrell Hall of the Tom H. Jackson Building, 628 Alma Mater Drive. To find the location and parking, visit http://tinyurl.com/MTSUParkingMap.

Zachary Lopez, left, and MTSU freshman biology major Rafael Lopez of Readyville, Tennessee, learn about Health Services and Health Promotions from Rick Chapman, right, and Lisa Schrader at the August 2016 newcomer briefing held by the Charlie and Hazel Daniels Veterans and Military Family Center near the Military Memorial site outside the Tom H. Jackson Building. (MTSU file photo by Randy Weiler)

Zachary Lopez, left, and MTSU freshman biology major Rafael Lopez of Readyville, Tennessee, learn about Health Services and Health Promotions from Rick Chapman, right, and Lisa Schrader at the August 2016 newcomer briefing held by the Charlie and Hazel Daniels Veterans and Military Family Center near the Military Memorial site outside the Tom H. Jackson Building. (MTSU file photo by Randy Weiler)

The briefing is to ensure veterans and their families are up to speed on campus resources, said Dr. Hilary Miller, center director.

Dr. Hilary Miller

Dr. Hilary Miller

Miller and her staff are targeting new-to-MTSU student veterans and family members, but it is open to all military-connected students, she said.

“Our goal is to make sure they have on-campus contacts for all offices that can help them be successful,” Miller said.

“In addition, we want them to know the center staff, be connected to us and know other student veterans.”

The agenda includes:

  • Dinner from 5 to 5:30 p.m.
  • Welcome, introduction of staff and center’s mission, led by Keith M. Huber, senior adviser for veterans and leadership initiatives and retired U.S. Army lieutenant general.
  • Veterans’ introductions.
  • Current center programs and fall semester events, led by Miller.
  • MTSU and the veterans’ relationship, led by Dr. Derek Frisby, a veteran, MTSU alumnus and faculty member in the Global Studies and Cultural Geography program in the College of Liberal Arts.
  • Discovering campus resources (includes tours and information about G.I. Bill, VetSuccess on Campus, tutoring and more).
  • College challenge from Miller, emphasizing graduation and employment expectations.

Student veterans can RSVP for the event by emailing Jennifer Brown at Jennifer.Brown@mtsu.edu or call 615-904-8347.

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

newcomers-briefing72

MTSU Records Office provides final list of fall 2016 graduates

MTSU is proud to release a final list of the graduates who received their degrees in the recent fall 2016 commencement ceremonies.

A pair of newly minted MTSU graduates show off their degrees inside Murphy Center during the university’s fall 2016 morning commencement ceremony Dec. 10. (MTSU photo by Eric B. Sutton)

A pair of newly minted MTSU graduates show off their degrees inside Murphy Center during the university’s fall 2016 morning commencement ceremony Dec. 10. (MTSU photo by Eric B. Sutton)

This list, alphabetized by home county and surname, is the final compilation by the MTSU Records Office of the names and hometowns of MTSU’s fall 2016 graduates.

The PDF is available by clicking here.

Full news coverage of the fall 2016 commencement ceremonies on Dec. 10, including videos and links to plenty of photos, is available here

MTSU graduation lists are finalized after each commencement day. An archive of recent graduation lists by semester is available here.

Please note: These final graduation lists are provided by the MTSU Registrar’s Office and are compiled from information from each student’s official records.

The Office of News and Media Relations does not compile nor create the final graduation list.

For questions about an individual student’s inclusion on the list, please contact the Registrar’s Office at 615-898-5170 or records@mtsu.edu.

MTSU recognizes 4,750-plus high achievers on fall 2016 Dean’s List

More than 4,750 MTSU students are included on the latest Dean’s List for their academic achievements for the fall 2016 semester.

fall2016 deans list graphicThis list, alphabetized by home county and surname, is the final compilation by the MTSU Records Office of the names and hometowns of students receiving the Dean’s List distinction for the fall.

The searchable PDF is available by clicking here.

To qualify for the Dean’s List, a student must maintain a current semester grade-point average of 3.5 or above and earn at least 12 semester hours.

The “Dean’s List” notation applies only to undergraduate students. MTSU’s lists are updated after each semester ends and student grades are posted.

An archive of recent Dean’s Lists by semester is available here.

Please note: This updated Dean’s List information is provided by the MTSU Registrar’s Office and is compiled from information from each student’s official records. The Office of News and Media Relations does not compile nor create the final Dean’s List.

For questions about an individual student’s inclusion on the list, please contact the Registrar’s Office at 615-898-5170 or records@mtsu.edu.

Student-run WMTS-FM boasts first black female GM, diverse lineup

Approaching its 25th anniversary, MTSU’s WMTS-FM 88.3 student radio station is celebrating its diversity with the landmark appointment of its first African-American female general manager and a renewed push to promote its wide-ranging programming featuring the next generation of media talent.

General manager Ebon’e Merrimon, who will start in January, also is just the third woman to hold the top position at the station, which was formed in 1992 and is housed in the university’s Center for Innovation in Media inside the Bragg Media and Entertainment Building. (Editor’s note: The original posting incorrectly stated that Merrimon was the first black GM in WMTS history. Nyronn Bryant was the first African-American general manager in the early 2000’s.)

MTSU junior Ebon’e Merrimon of Nashville, Tenn., will become the first African-American female general manager at the university’s student-run radio station WMTS-FM 88.3. Merrimon starts her new role in January. (Submitted photo)

The Nashville area junior with the electric smile said she developed her drive in a single-parent household under the tutelage of her mother, Pastor Stacey Young.

“When it comes to growing up, I had to learn ‘adult first, child later,’ and I’m still like that now,” Merrimon said.

“My entire life I’ve seen nothing but a woman on the move, on the grind. My mother worked three jobs one time to provide for me and my sibling.”

CME-logo-webA College of Media and Entertainment student majoring in media management with a minor in African-American studies, Merrimon said she’s looking forward to working alongside Assistant General Manager Melissa Summit to expand the station’s footprint and continue creating a more diverse array of shows.

Merrimon and her team will manage nearly 60 shows, which include the award-winning “The Justin Reed Show,” which features classic country, bluegrass, Americana, classic and Southern rock music, and the station’s highly rated hip-hop program, “The Remix.”

Named for the well-known graduate student who serves as its host, “The Justin Reed Show” is broadcast 6-10 a.m. on Thursdays. “The Remix” airs 8-10 a.m. on Fridays. You can see the station’s full lineup at WMTS.org.

Merrimon has been involved with the station since her freshman year and served as a host for the station’s first gospel show, “Deep Soul Gospel,” as well as “Deep Soul Radio.”

MTSU graduate student Justin Reed hosts the award-winning “The Justin Reed Show” on WMTS-FM 88.3. (Courtesy of The Justin Reed Show)

MTSU graduate student Justin Reed hosts the award-winning “The Justin Reed Show” on WMTS-FM 88.3. (Courtesy of The Justin Reed Show)

Those around the station, including center director Val Hoeppner, say Merrimon’s ambition and tenacity ultimately led her to becoming the general manager.

Val Hoeppner

Val Hoeppner

“She’s got a ton of energy, she’s incredibly passionate about this,” said Hoeppner. “She came to me a freshman, banging down my door to get in here and get on the radio. I think that’s really great, and she’s so organized and dedicated to doing this.”

In the male-dominated industry, especially in leadership positions, WMTS has worked to stay ahead of the curve in promoting diversity at the top. Hoeppner plays a vital role overseeing the station, and Merrimon will be taking over for the second woman to hold the station manager’s position, Melissa Ferguson.

Ferguson trained Merrimon this semester to prepare her for the role. The new station manager said already has a plan set up for when she takes office.

One facet of that plan, Merrimon said, stresses promoting more community involvement between the station and its students, including a WMTS-sponsored concert that will invite local acts, especially students, to perform.

While details are still being developed, Merrimon and her team envision that the concert will take place in August and feature acts from all genres, including rock bands, rappers, and even jazz artists.

Forming stronger relationships with other organizations on campus also is a part of Merrimon’s agenda.

“I’m definitely all about networking with other organizations on campus to make sure their organization is getting out there. If the station is student-run, it should be student-associated,” she said.

Internally, Merrimon and her team will focus on locating more self-motivated radio personalities, such as Reed and Jasmine McCraven, who hosts the hip-hop and discussion-based “JazzyLo Radio” each Thursday from 11 p.m. to midnight. Increasing the profile of such shows will help with acquiring more sponsorships and increase the funding for WMTS, Merrimon said.

MTSU sophomore Joe Wasilewski of Knoxville, Tenn., prepares for his 4-6 p.m. show at the student-run WMTS-FM 88.3 radio station. His show, “Stop Motion,” features alternative rock, psychedelic and “trip hop” music, and is among the varied radio personalities that listeners will find on WMTS, which is housed in the Center for Innovation in Media inside the Bragg Media and Entertainment Building. (MTSU photo by Jimmy Hart)

MTSU sophomore Joe Wasilewski of Knoxville, Tenn., prepares for his 4-6 p.m. show at the student-run WMTS-FM 88.3 radio station. His show, “Stop Motion,” features alternative rock, psychedelic and “trip hop” music and is among the varied programming that listeners will find on WMTS, which is housed in the Center for Innovation in Media inside the Bragg Media and Entertainment Building. (MTSU photo by Jimmy Hart)

MTSU sophomore Joe Wasilewski of Knoxville, Tennessee, whose 4-6 p.m. show “Stop Motion” features alternative rock, psychedelic and “trip hop” music, is among the varied programming listeners will find on WMTS.

A local rapper was a recent studio guest, which was a departure from Wasilewski’s comfort zone but something he has the freedom to do.

“What’s surprising is the amount of listeners I get, particularly during the drive time hours,” said Wasilewski, who said he was recently accepted into the music business program.

Even though she doesn’t take office until January, Merrimon has already begun putting the wheels in motion for some of her plans. Ferguson, who served as her mentor and trainer, isn’t surprised by her efforts.

“She’s really a go-getter, and she’s just so inspiring to me and I think to others. The biggest thing I told her was to be prepared to make decisions for the good of the station, even when they’re hard or you don’t like them. I think she’ll do well,” said Ferguson.

Merrimon will hold the position until her expected graduation date in 2018. By the time she leaves her post, Merrimon already has a vision for what her tenure at WMTS will have accomplished.

“I want it to be when I leave out of here, you can’t go anywhere without knowing WMTS is a student-run station and it’s poppin’ and a hit,” she said.

For more information on WMTS, visit the station website, www.WMTS.org, or call 615-898-2636.

— Steven Michael Johnson (news@mtsu.edu)

MTSU graduates’ dreams come true at fall commencement [+VIDEOS]

Dreams came true for at least 1,892 people at MTSU Saturday, Dec. 10, as they accepted their hard-earned graduate and undergraduate degrees inside Murphy Center at the university’s fall 2016 commencement ceremonies.

“We’re here to honor your accomplishments and your successes,” U.S. Rep. Diane Black told the newly minted graduates in the morning commencement ceremony.

“Now that you’ve fulfilled this dream, a dream you’ve looked for for a long time, I want you to dream bigger. … You’ve received some of the best training around, and now it’s time for you to go out and build something beautiful.”

Here’s a video recap of the morning ceremony:

https://youtu.be/1fj9k62B5H8​

U.S. Rep. Diane Black

U.S. Rep. Diane Black

Jeff Davidson, Rutherford County deputy mayor

Jeff Davidson

Black, a resident of Gallatin, Tennessee, who represents the state’s 6th District in Congress, joined afternoon commencement speaker Jeff Davidson, an MTSU alumnus and Rutherford County deputy mayor, in congratulating the graduates.

Davidson, citing entrepreneur Warren Buffett’s qualifications for an ideal employee — integrity, intelligence and energy — urged them to maintain their integrity above all.

“Class of 2016, you have the intelligence. You will receive a diploma indicating that achievement,” said Davidson, an Eagleville, Tennessee, resident who’s also a retired U.S. Army colonel.

“Your energy should be reflected in your perseverance: three strikes and you’re not necessarily out. And remember, whatever mistakes, whatever bad luck, whatever failure may come your way, your personal integrity is in your hands and your hands only. Nobody can take it away from you except for you.”

Here’s a video recap of the afternoon event:

Kingston, Tennessee, native and biology major Amanda Uhls is already on track for a career that demands all three qualities. Graduating cum laude in just 3 1/2 years, Uhls received her degree in the morning ceremony, then watched as Cory Uhls, her husband of six months, received his audio production degree in the afternoon commencement.

Amanda Uhls

Amanda Uhls

She begins work Jan. 9 as a microbiologist for the Tennessee Department of Health in Nashville.

“It’s kind of scary because I’m not going to be in school for the first time ever, but it’s nice to have a job,” said Uhls, 21. “I have a lot of friends still waiting to hear about job opportunities. It doesn’t feel real. It’ll kick in after everybody else comes back to school in January.”

Joey Kennedy

Joey Kennedy

MTSU President Sidney A. McPhee noted that 70 percent of all MTSU’s graduates stay in Tennessee. “We don’t export talent,” McPhee said. “This is just the beginning of greater things to come.”

At least one new MTSU graduate may venture outside the United States, however, if he’s accepted in January as a Fulbright scholar.

Joey Kennedy of Murfreesboro, who’s majored in Spanish and international relations, said he’d like to use that international honor to work as an English teaching assistant in the South American nation of Ecuador, then earn dual law and MBA degrees and seek an automotive career in international business with a focus in Latin America.

He attributed his success to his MTSU professors and mentors.

“The faculty helped challenge me academically through strenuous course material,” said Kennedy. “The staff were also key to my success at MTSU by providing advice and guidance when I needed it the most.”

The MTSU Registrar’s Office reported that 1,622 of the 1,892 students who received degrees Dec. 10 are undergraduates and 270 are graduate students, including 251 master’s candidates, six education-specialist degree recipients and 13 doctoral candidates. Twenty students received undergraduate certificates, and one student received a graduate certificate.

Fall 2016 degree candidates from MTSU’s College of Education proudly wear their hearts — and careers — on their mortarboards as they file into Murphy Center Saturday, Dec. 10, for the morning commencement ceremony. (MTSU photo by Eric B. Sutton)

Fall 2016 degree candidates from MTSU’s College of Education proudly wear their hearts — and careers — on their mortarboards as they file into Murphy Center Saturday, Dec. 10, for the morning commencement ceremony. (MTSU photo by Eric B. Sutton)

A trio of MTSU’s fall Class of 2016 degree candidates snap a final selfie together before the afternoon commencement ceremony in Murphy Center Saturday, Dec. 10. From left are Daniel Rayner, Denise Ramirez and Gerkelly Mealey. (MTSU photo by Andy Heidt)

A trio of MTSU’s fall Class of 2016 degree candidates snap a final selfie together before the afternoon commencement ceremony in Murphy Center Saturday, Dec. 10. From left are Daniel Rayner, Denise Ramirez and Gerkelly Mealey. (MTSU photo by Andy Heidt)

You can see more photos from the fall 2016 commencement ceremonies at www.facebook.com/pg/mtsublueraiders/photos. The full commencement program is available here.

MTSU graduation information is always available at www.mtsunews.com/graduation-info.

— MTSU News and Media Relations staff (news@mtsu.edu)

MTSU seniors recognized for plans to restore 3 songwriters’ copyrights

Two MTSU seniors are the dual recipients of MTSU’s 2016 Chitwood Award for Excellence for their plans to help three best-selling songwriters reclaim ownership of two of their popular compositions.

Peyton Robinette

Peyton Robinette

Robert Williford

Robert Williford

Peyton Robinette and Robert Williford accepted the awards during a special ceremony Nov. 30 in MTSU’s Bragg Media and Entertainment Building.

Their honors recognize the best “Recapture Projects of 2015-16” proposed by a Department of Recording Industry student in MTSU associate professor Deborah Wagnon’s copyright law class.

The projects affect the songs “Dirty Pool,” created by the late musicians Stevie Ray Vaughan and Doyle Bramhall, and singer/songwriter Mike Reid’s classic “Stranger in My House,” performed by Ronnie Milsap.

Deborah Wagnon

Deborah Wagnon

“The power of each of these 1983 songs made this a particularly exciting opportunity to shine the light on both blues and country works that have stood the test of time,” Wagnon said.

The Recapture Project is tied to U.S. Copyright Act (Section 203), which lets copyright creators terminate their publishers’ rights and reclaim ownership of their songs or books after a 35-year moratorium. Each student studying copyright law with Wagnon is required to participate in the project.

Wagnon, who also is an entertainment business attorney, said she will contact the Vaughan and Bramhall estates and Reid’s representatives to present the students’ proposal.

Each of Wagnon’s students also must create a plan of action for the recaptured work, including information that’s needed to reclaim the copyright 35 years after the original grant, assignment or license was finalized.

“This means Peyton and Rob had to demonstrate a future plan hat will be inventive and timely in the marketplace as of Dec. 31, 2019,” Wagnon explained.

Robinette specifically sought out works by some of his favorite artists and realized the time frame would fit songs from Vaughan’s debut album, “Texas Flood.” The commercial songwriting major from Rockwood, Tennessee, recognized Bramhall’s name thanks to seeing the late musician’s son, Doyle Bramhall II, on stage with Eric Clapton.

“When I realized the connection between the two, my heart was set on the song ‘Dirty Pool,’” Robinette said. “This recapture project … blended legal process with art, allowing me to fully dive into my efforts.”

Doyle Bramhall

Doyle Bramhall

Stevie Ray Vaughn web

Stevie Ray Vaughn

Williford, a Nashville recording industry major who also is a songwriter and musician, said his project on Reid’s 1984 Grammy winner for best country song “presented a particularly interesting and educational opportunity to gain real-world experience in the publishing world.”

“Drafting a proposal outlining the process which would allow Mr. Reid to exercise his right to recapture his intellectual property was a unique, exciting endeavor,” he added. “I especially enjoyed the creative challenge of envisioning ideas for potential exploitation of his song in the future.”

Mike Reid webMTSU’s Department of Recording Industry inaugurated the Chitwood Award of Excellence in fall 2014 to honor recording industry major David “Ritt” Chitwood, who was killed in a January 2014 traffic accident near campus. Organizers said Chitwood, a Nolensville, Tennessee, resident, served as an inspiration for faculty and students alike because of his optimism and eagerness to learn after surviving a near-fatal 2006 car wreck.

They expanded the award this year to also honor the estate of Charles Monroe Johnson, a Tennessee attorney, author and World War II veteran whose 1954 memoir, “Action with the Seaforths,” had fallen into the public domain and has now been restored to Johnson’s family in a new copyrighted derivative work with new photos, a foreword by Johnson’s daughter, Mona, and a new cover illustrated by recording industry graduate Victoria Richardson.

Wagnon began the Recapture Project in 2011 for her copyright law classes to encourage research and legal detail as well as creativity and entrepreneurial thinking. Copyright law is a required course in MTSU’s Department of Recording Industry, which is a part of the university’s College of Media and Entertainment.

For more information about the Department of Recording Industry at MTSU, visit www.mtsu.edu/recording-industry.

MTSU scholar wins $1K study-abroad grant from Phi Kappa Phi

The nation’s oldest and most selective collegiate honor society has presented a $1,000 grant to an MTSU student.

Tiffany Miller

Tiffany Miller

Tiffany Miller, a junior from Bell Buckle, Tennessee, received the stipend from The Honor Society of Phi Kappa Phi. She is one of only 26 students nationwide to receive the study-abroad grant.

Miller, who majors in both international relations and Spanish, will use the money to study at Universidad Andres Bello in Santiago, Chile.

“Chile is considered one of the most prosperous nations in South America, and I’m intrigued by what mechanisms are in place in Chile that allow it to thrive,” said Miller.

phi kappa phi logo web“Understanding this blend of political and economic success will enrich my other interests in international relations and economics.”

Miller added that in her opinion, Chile is one of the most beautiful places that a person can visit.

“Santiago is nestled in between the Atacama Desert to the north, the Andes Mountains in the east, the Pacific Ocean in the west and frozen Patagonia in the south,” she said.

The MTSU student said she’s considering many options for her future, including seeking a Fulbright grant, attending graduate school and pursuing a career in higher education.

Founded in 1897, Phi Kappa Phi inducts approximately 30,000 students, faculty, professional staff and alumni each year. The society has chapters at more than 300 select colleges and universities, including MTSU.

Membership for undergraduates is by invitation only. It’s offered to the top 10 percent of seniors and graduate students and the top 7.5 percent of juniors.

For more information, contact Gina Logue, public affairs officer of MTSU’s Phi Kappa Phi chapter, at 615-898-5081 or gina.logue@mtsu.edu.

MTSU student veterans go extra mile to graduate [+VIDEO]

Like many of her younger MTSU student veteran peers, Jemekia Young-Weeden has gone the extra mile to graduate.

Not only have Young-Weeden and her fellow veterans served their country during military conflict in the Middle East, they’ve worked to earn college degrees while holding down jobs and caring for their families since their active duty ended.

The university recognized nearly 25 of the 90 student veterans planning to graduate Saturday, Dec. 10, during the sixth Graduating Veterans Stole Ceremony, held Monday, Nov. 28, in the Tom H. Jackson Building’s Cantrell Hall.

Since May 2015, MTSU has honored its graduating student veterans with a formal ceremony with family, friends and university administrators. Each graduating veteran receives a special red stole to wear with his or her gown at the commencement ceremony to recognize academic achievement.

Graduating MTSU student veteran Melissa Kelley, left, registers for the university's sixth Stole Ceremony and visits with Jennifer Brown of the Charlie and Hazel Daniels Veterans and Military Family Center Nov. 28 in the Tom H. Jackson Building. (MTSU photos by Andy Heidt)

Graduating MTSU student veteran Melissa Kelley, left, registers for the university’s sixth Stole Ceremony and visits with Jennifer Brown of the Charlie and Hazel Daniels Veterans and Military Family Center Nov. 28 in the Tom H. Jackson Building. (MTSU photos by Andy Heidt)

Young-Weeden, 44, a criminal justice major, is married to U.S. Army Afghanistan War veteran Marquis Weeden and is the mother of three children between 5 months and 11 years old. Baby Aneika was born June 23, altering her mother’s summer class schedule and leading to a 20-hour fall 2016 class load for Young-Weeden in order to graduate.

“This means everything today,” Young-Weeden said, holding up the red stole with both hands. “It is a part of me that has been missing for a while.

“When digging in and studying — and all the craziness building up to graduation — sometimes you forget about yourself. You think back to basic training and all those things you remember doing that they taught you in the military. The representation of them is here today.”

During her military service, Young-Weeden was a petroleum supply specialist and was cross-trained in logistics and environmental protection. She left the U.S. Army as an E3, or private first class, disabled veteran with post traumatic stress disorder, or PTSD.

Keith M. Huber, senior adviser for veterans and leadership initiatives at MTSU and a retired U.S. Army lieutenant general, and Dr. Mark Byrnes, MTSU interim provost, spoke during the ceremony.

Among those attending one of the largest stole ceremonies to date were Jeff Davidson, deputy mayor for Rutherford County; retired U.S. Army Brig. Gen. David Ogg, an MTSU alumnus; Brian James and James Ervin of Barrett Firearms; Chinh Brown, Steve Clayton, Todd Thiel and Fran Jones of Bridgestone; and Tomeka Cain of the Veterans Benefits Administration’s Nashville Regional Office.

MTSU student veterans and their families are served by the Charlie and Hazel Daniels Veterans and Military Family Center on campus. For more about the center’s services, call 615-904-8347 or visit http://mtsu.edu/military.

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

MTSU interim Provost Mark Byrnes, left, graduating student veteran Scott DeNicholas and Keith M. Huber, senior adviser for veterans and leadership initiatives, are shown after DeNicholas was one of nearly 25 student vets recognized Nov. 28.

MTSU interim Provost Mark Byrnes, left, graduating student veteran Scott DeNicholas and Keith M. Huber, senior adviser for veterans and leadership initiatives, pose for a commemorative photo after DeNicholas and nearly 25 of his fellow student vets were recognized Nov. 28 in a special university Stole Ceremony.

Dec. 1 deadline looms for prospective MTSU students’ applications

The message to prospective students from Middle Tennessee State University administrators and advertising campaigns this fall contains a specific deadline: Apply by Thursday, Dec. 1, or risk missing out on guaranteed scholarship money for those who meet the qualifications.

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 photo by Randy Weiler)

In this October file photo, Dr. Laurie Witherow, left, associate vice provost for student affairs, talks about MTSU program opportunities and the importance of the Dec. 1 application deadline with Kristi McHugh and her son, Brantley, of Gurley, Ala., during the True Blue Tour recruiting visit at the U.S. Space & Rockent Center in Huntsville, Ala. Brantley McHugh, 16, is a junior at Madison County High School in Gurley. (MTSU file photo by Randy Weiler)

Guaranteed scholarships are available to high school seniors who plan to begin college at MTSU in August 2017 if those prospective students:

  • Meet academic requirements.
  • Complete the application.
  • Pay the application fee by Dec. 1.

“I have an assignment for the high school seniors over their Thanksgiving holiday: Apply to MTSU,” said Dr. Laurie Witherow, associate vice provost for undergraduate recruitment in the Division of Student Affairs.

Dr. Laurie Witherow

Dr. Laurie Witherow

“The application deadline for scholarship consideration is Dec. 1,” she added. “We need to have sixth-semester transcripts, ACT or SAT scores and an MTSU application by that date. MTSU guarantees scholarships to applicants who have at least a 25 ACT and a 3.5 high school GPA.

“Don’t miss out because you let the deadline slide.”

Guaranteed scholarships range from $2,000 to $5,000 a year for four years for recipients who are U.S. citizens or permanent residents. The awards include:

  • Chancellor’s Scholarship — $5,000 per year; requires a minimum 30 or higher ACT score and minimum 3.5 GPA.
  • Presidential Scholarship — $4,000 per year; requires a 28 ACT and 3.5 GPA.
  • True Blue Scholarship— $3,000 per year; requires a 26 ACT and 3.5 GPA.
  • Provost’s Scholarship — $2,000 per yearr; requires a 25 ACT and 3.5 GPA.

For equivalent SAT scores for these scholarships and other information, including the online scholarship guide, visit www.mtsu.edu/financial-aid/scholarships/incoming-freshmen.php.

Recipients must meet requirements for GPA, enrollment, satisfactory academic progress, and service, where applicable, to maintain their scholarship eligibility.

More information can be found at www.mtsu.edu/scholarships.

Prospective students whose applications are received after Dec. 1 may learn that scholarship money will not be available. Applications mailed to MTSU must be postmarked Dec. 1.

To learn more about the University Honors College and its Buchanan Fellowship, the highest award given to an entering MTSU freshman, visit www.mtsu.edu/honors.

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

Food for thought: MTSU dining cashiers urge student registration

Along with the food they will eat, MTSU students have received a friendly reminder as they use cash or their ID card to pay for their meals this week.

Sporting T-shirts that say “It’s Time to Register! Nov. 15-18,” caring MT Dining employees are urging students to complete priority registration for the spring 2017 semester in McCallie Dining Hall and RaiderZone in the James Union Building.

MTSU freshmen tennis player Tom Moonen, left, talks with RaiderZone cashier Alicia Gaines, who makes sure he has looked into and completed his priority registration for the spring 2017 semester. Moonen, a finance major, is from Rotterdam in The Netherlands. (MTSU photos by Randy Weiler)

MTSU freshmen tennis player Tom Moonen, left, talks with RaiderZone cashier Alicia Gaines, who makes sure he has looked into and completed his priority registration for the spring 2017 semester. Moonen, a finance major, is from Rotterdam in The Netherlands. (MTSU photos by Randy Weiler)

A partnership between the Office of Student Success and MT Dining emphasizes priority registration for the spring 2017 semester — and the method is working.

“Wednesday, I ate at the RaiderZone and was floored by how the cashiers were engaging the students,” said Vincent Windrow, vice provost for Student Success.

At the RaiderZone Nov. 17, associate professor Donald Campbell came up with this assessment: “You’ve got to eat. You’ve got to register.”

Just weeks before finals and with the Thanksgiving holiday break approaching, the cashiers are spreading the word so students do not wait until the last minute to register and be able to cross this important item off their to-do list.

“This is an incredible example of one of Dr. (Sidney A.) McPhee’s 10 keys to student success,” Windrow said. “We want the first-year students to understand how registering now positions them for success next semester. And, man, have they been on it — and we owe a lot of credit to the cashiers.”

For RaiderZone cashier Alicia Grimes of Murfreesboro, her ability to share with students “just comes naturally,” she said. “I care (about the students). I love our students.”

Aaliyah Gray, 18, a sophomore from the Bahamas, said she has registered and she’s “glad they’re concerned that everyone’s registered.” She added she just had “seen Mr. Vinny (Windrow). He asked if I had registered and asked about my classes this semester.”

In McCallie, cashier June Campbell of Murfreesboro said the registration awareness message is reaching students.

“They say, ‘I’ve already registered’ or ‘I’m waiting ’til Friday,’” she said. “I normally wear a black chef’s jacket. Most of the students look at my shirt and notice something’s different. … I think it’s a good thing to remind them. They are busy with midterms and other things. The shirt’s another visual reminder.”

Brandi Thomas, 19, a freshman from Memphis, Tennessee, just changed her major, from nursing to education and plans to meet with her adviser. She definitely “likes the idea” of the cashiers reminding them about registration.

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

MT Dining cashier June Campbell, left, checks with a trio of MTSU students, asking if they have taken care of their priority registration, which runs Nov. 15-18.

MT Dining cashier June Campbell, left, checks with a trio of MTSU students, asking if they have taken care of their priority registration, which runs Nov. 15-18.

MTSU freshman Nathan Belete, 18, of Nashville, Tenn., tells McCallie Dining cashier June Campbell his advising appointment will be Monday, Nov. 21, after she asks him if he has completed his priority registration Nov. 18.

MTSU freshman Nathan Belete, 18, of Nashville, Tenn., tells McCallie Dining cashier June Campbell his advising appointment will be Monday, Nov. 21, after she asks him if he has completed his priority registration Nov. 18.

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