By William T. Robinson Jr.
You would think that everyone associated with Tennessee State University would be ecstatic at the unprecedented enrollment of students this year but that doesn’t seem to be the case. It appears as if some Tennessee lawmakers in our legislature are questioning the influx of proud and anxious students excited about attending TSU which is considered a premier starship HBCU in our nation. Maybe unbeknown to some of TSU critics that TSU is a well respected starship university recognized and respected throughout the country for its prolific and stellar alumni making significant gains in all areas of achievement throughout the country and the world. TSU is unapologetically a force to be reckoned with despite what many feel is a movement by many of our very own Tennessee lawmakers to bring it down.
This feeling of displeasure for TSU in its endeavors is fueled by what some see as legislators persistent in denying TSU adequate funding to meet basic operational needs. Instead of working to help build TSU up there are those that seem to be adamant in trying to bring TSU down. It should be no surprise that some of these legislators, UT supporters, and alumni of UT are more that partial in making sure UT gets all the funding and amenities it need to prosper, relegating TSU to the back burner. Regardless of the lack of support from the state, TSU has continued to grow its curriculum, establishing new programs and making a significant difference in the community.
Recently, TSU has come under fire for lack of housing for its new students, but the public is unaware the TSU administration was denied funding by the state for 12 hotels they requested. I could only imagine would funding for housing be denied to UT if requested. But of course, because of more than adequate funding, UT has been able to build the housing necessary for its students. Isn’t it ironic that any improprieties happening at UT is covered up while anything questionable is made public by the media to depict TSU in a negative light?
The state may not be too happy because TSU is owed land grant funds denied to TSU by the state since the fifties. It wouldn’t be surprising to conclude that the state may be trying to do everything possible to present TSU’s administration as incompetent and unable to manage it own financial matters.
This causes many to question “Is the state trying to find a way not to give TSU all of the land grant monies owed? If not, why is the state trying to come in at this time, disrupting the best time TSU has had in a long time with its impressive unprecedented enrollment.
It is insulting and degrading to imply that TSU is negligent in being able to manage its money. TSU has been able rise and sustain despite efforts by the state denying them funds to succeed. Call it what you will, but some would call it blatant discrimatory practices against TSU.
TSU alumni, the TSU community, and TSU stakeholders are ready to fight to defend what we all know are partisan disfavor against TSU by some legislators. All we ask is for the state to do the right thing. Those who love TSU are ready to bring a dog to this fight and we can bite.
Save TSU Community Coalition