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MTSU on WGNS: Simulator facility, STEM survey, black history

MTSU faculty and staff took to the radio recently to discuss the dedication of a new flight simulator building and new weather software, results from a STEM workforce survey and a new online resource to help preserve African-American historical sites.

Details were shared during the May 16 WGNS Radio “Action Line” program with host Bart Walker. The live program was broadcast on FM 100.5, 101.9 and AM 1450 from the station’s downtown Murfreesboro studio. If you missed it, you can listen to a podcast of the show here.

  • MTSU aerospace graduate student Leland Waite, left, faculty member Don Crews, interim chair Wendy Beckman and faculty member Jerry Hill discuss the department's newly dedicated flight simulator building and weather software students will begin utilizing in the fall during their May 16 segment on the WGNS radio "Action Line" program. (MTSU photos by Randy Weiler)

    MTSU aerospace graduate student Leland Waite, left, faculty member Don Crews, interim chair Wendy Beckman and faculty member Jerry Hill discuss the department’s newly dedicated flight simulator building and weather software that students will begin utilizing in the fall during their May 16 segment on the WGNS radio “Action Line” program. (MTSU photos by Randy Weiler)

    Dr. Wendy Beckman, interim chair of the Department of Aerospace, faculty members Jerry Hill and Don Crews and graduate student Leland Waite. They discussed the $700,000 simulator building dedicated May 5 at Murfreesboro Airport and weather software.

The 3,600-gross-square-foot facility features a classroom, six briefing rooms, bathrooms and infrastructure to support spaces. It joins other MTSU Flight Operations Center airport facilities. Find the full story here.

Aerospace also has received an aviation operations management solution, WSI Fusion, in the Business and Aerospace Building simulation lab. Students will graduate with a competitive advantage because it is not available at most aviation schools. Find the full story here.

  • Dr. Murat Arik , director of the MTSU Business and Economic and Research Center, or BERC, and graduate student Katherine Stubblefield. They discussed the results of a STEM workforce survey conducted last fall by BERC.
Murfreesboro's Dee Butler, left, whose family lives on a century farm, and Dr. Antoinette Van Zelm of the MTSU Center for Historic Preservation, promote "Preserving African-American Historic Places: Suggestions and Sources." (MTSU photo by Randy Weiler)

Murfreesboro’s Dee Butler, left, whose family lives on a century farm, and Dr. Antoinette Van Zelm of the MTSU Center for Historic Preservation, promote “Preserving African-American Historic Places: Suggestions and Sources.”

A survey of businesses, mayors, local economic development officials, and school principals suggests that Tennessee faces significant challenges in the STEM workforce supply, pipeline and infrastructure, the report states.

Among the BERC’s key survey findings is that Tennessee faces an employment and skills gap in STEM areas. As of 2013, the size of the STEM workforce in Tennessee was an estimated 324,328, but the report characterized that workforce as “an oversupply of a low-skilled STEM workforce relative to the U.S. average.” An additional 16,000 jobs could be created by upgrading the STEM skill set of the current workforce. Find the full story here.

  • Dr. Antoinette Van Zelm, assistant director of MTSU’s Center for Historic Preservation, and Dee Butler, whose family has a Rutherford County Century Farm. They discussed a new online resource to help preserve African-American historical sites.

“Preserving African-American Historic Places: Suggestions and Sources” is an omnibus online site with information on collections care, museum management, heritage tourism and fundraising. You can find it here.

One example of a site the CHP already has helped to preserve is Griggs Hall, the first building constructed in 1923 on Nashville’s American Baptist College’s campus.

Other potential preservation sites include businesses, cemeteries, churches, farms, homes, neighborhoods and lodges. Find the full story here.

Students, faculty and staff who are interested in guesting on WGNS to promote their MTSU-related activities should contact Jimmy Hart, director of news and media relations, at 615-898-5131 or via email at jimmy.hart@mtsu.edu.

— Jimmy Hart (Jimmy.Hart@mtsu.edu)

MTSU Business and Economic Research Center director Murat Arik, left, and graduate student Katherine Stubblefield reveal results from BERC's STEM workforce survey.

MTSU Business and Economic Research Center director Murat Arik, left, and graduate student Katherine Stubblefield reveal results from BERC’s STEM workforce survey.

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