By Alexis Clark
NASHVILLE, TN (TSU News Service) – Tennessee State University turned the State Capitol blue for the 2023 TSU Day at the Capitol. Students, staff, administrators, alumni and faculty got a chance to speak with lawmakers and showcase many of TSU’s excellent academic programs.
The University’s day at the capitol included nearly 100 TSU students, like TSU freshman Kindall Miller, who volunteered by delivering gift bags to lawmakers. What Miller didn’t expect was to visit the capitol for the first time ever and leave with a huge opportunity for the Fall.
“I met Senator Brent Taylor and he was very kind saying he would be excited to work with me in the Fall.” Taylor’s assistant followed up and gave the Alabama native an internship application for an opportunity to work in their office at the capitol next semester. Miller, who is studying social work manifested this internship opportunity as she hopes to one day become a legislation policy analyst, she said. Miller also noted that she enjoyed TSU President Glenda Glover speech during the kick-off event.
“This has become one of the university’s most successful outreach program as we take the opportunity to share with lawmakers the great things that are taking place at TSU,” President Glover said. From groundbreaking research projects to major campus infrastructure, Glover talked about how pristine the university programs are and thanked lawmakers who have been present and continue to provide for TSU every day.
“We take a little and produce the greatest people in the world.”
During the event students also listened to inspiring words from freshman Senator Charlane Oliver, State Representatives Harold Love Jr. and Antonio Parkinson, TSU alumna Sandra Hunt and student trustee on the TSU Board of Trustees Shaun Wimberly Jr.
Senator Oliver said she is proud of TSU students and their academic journey so far.
“I want to congratulate each and every one of you for making it to where you are in life as a Black student,” Oliver said. “If you look around, it’s not too many of us up here. We need to see you more. Walk with that true blue pride today in the halls of power.”
While Senator Oliver gave the students encouraging words, TSU alumnus Harold Love Jr. told everyone that his alma mater is a leading university to train and transform society. “One of the goals of the day on the hill is to let legislators know what is going on at your university,” Love told the students. “Let them know about the great work, your classes, professors, and what needs there may be to help make your institution better to go from a R2 to R1 level.”
A key part of TSU’s day on the hill was the opportunity to showcase the university’s diverse research and academic offerings. TSU junior Davin Latiker, said his Day at the Capitol was a great experience and that he admired seeing African American lawmakers and alumni represent.
“Seeing senators and representatives work behind the scenes and witness how much they care about the students meant a lot to me,” said Latiker, a junior mass communication major from Chicago.
“My favorite part was seeing my fellow peers excitement and being in the presence of people who make a difference. This can be my reality.”
This year marks the 8th celebration of the Day at the Capitol. The community hasn’t attended a TSU Day at the Capitol since early 2020, due to the pandemic.