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MTSU True Blue Tour visit to Clarksville, Franklin...

MTSU True Blue Tour visit to Clarksville, Franklin: family ties, strong academic backgrounds

CLARKSVILLE and FRANKLIN, Tenn. — Annabeth Pittman has both family history and family ties with Middle Tennessee State University.

And it doesn’t hurt that the Clarksville High School junior not only is interested in MTSU’s film production and marketing programs, but she personally spent time on the Murfreesboro campus when the Clarksville Business Academy visited MTSU’s film and College of Media and Entertainment facilities.

Pittman was among a large contingent of Clarksville-area students attending MTSU’s annual True Blue Tour recruiting event Thursday (Oct. 10) at the TownePlace Suites by Marriott in Clarksville. MTSU’s expanded tour also stopped in Franklin Tuesday, Oct. 8, to recruit prospective students from Williamson and neighboring counties.

MTSU President Sidney A. McPhee talked to those attending the True Blue Tour event Thursday, Oct. 10, in Clarksville, Tenn., at the TownePlace Suites by Marriott before he presented a special blanket to a parent of a prospective student. (MTSU photo by Randy Weiler)

MTSU President Sidney A. McPhee talked to those attending the True Blue Tour event Thursday, Oct. 10, in Clarksville, Tenn., at the TownePlace Suites by Marriott before he presented a special blanket to a parent of a prospective student. (MTSU photo by Randy Weiler)

MTSU President Sidney A. McPhee talked to those attending the True Blue Tour event Thursday, Oct. 10, in Clarksville, Tenn., at the TownePlace Suites by Marriott before he presented a special blanket to a parent of a prospective student. (MTSU photo by Randy Weiler)

Clarksville and Franklin were the sixth and seventh stops, respectively, as MTSU travels across the state and to Alabama, Georgia and Kentucky in search of outstanding prospective students. The events are free. To register for an upcoming tour event, visitwww.mtsu.edu/rsvp.

Pittman’s great-grandmother, Lucille Estes, taught in MTSU’s family and consumer science (previously called home economics) department. Estes’ daughter-in-law, Harriet Estes, also taught in MTSU fashion merchandising.

Pittman’s grandfather, Maurice Pittman, earned bachelor’s (1972) and master’s (MBA in ’74) degrees and would eventually retire from Motlow State Community College, an MTSU partner. Grandmother Barbara Allyn Estes Pittman graduated from MTSU in 1964, then embarked on a real estate career in Manchester, Tennessee.

“There’s a lot of education in the family,” said Donna Pittman, Annabeth’s mother.

On Annabeth Pittman’s visit, she recalled “all the creativity faculty let students have.” She also attended an MTSU football game in Floyd Stadium.

At both Franklin and Clarksville, MTSU President Sidney A. McPhee shared about outstanding programs, caring faculty and staff, and the guaranteed True Blue, Presidential and Trustee scholarships available to qualifying students who apply by the Dec. 1 deadline.

Prospective students and their families from the Clarksville, Tenn., area visited with MTSU colleges and departments Thursday, Oct. 10, at the TownePlace Suites by Marriott during the True Blue Tour recruiting visit. (MTSU photo by John Goodwin)

Prospective students and their families from the Clarksville, Tenn., area visited with MTSU colleges and departments Thursday, Oct. 10, at the TownePlace Suites by Marriott during the True Blue Tour recruiting visit. (MTSU photo by John Goodwin)

Clarksville highlights

• Fellah Mohsun, 17, a Clarksville High senior qualifies for the new True Blue Scholarship with a 4.0 GPA and 23 ACT, but she’s hoping to improve the ACT when she retakes it. “That would help,” Mohsun said of the additional $8,000 ($2,000 per year for four years. “Hopefully, I might get a Presidential (Scholarship).” This scholarship is $18,000 total or $4,500 per year. She is considering pursuing engineering, and attended the tour event with her mother, Oneeba Mohsun and brother, Rayan Mohsun.

• Lisa Elaine Wrede definitely came the farthest distance. The foreign exchange student from Muenster, Germany, is a junior this year at Rossview High, where she’s on the varsity tennis team. She’s “very impressed” with MTSU, saying she wants to study international relations or political science and play tennis.

• MTSU alumnus and Legends Bank President and CEO Tommy Bates Jr. spoke to the Clarksville audience, admitting a “blue” persuasion toward his alma mater (Classes of 1985 and ’92) and that of wife Debbie (’86) and their son Kyle (’15), an MTSU electronic media production major who is on the road with the likes of Shawn Mendes, The Chainsmokers, Little Big Town and others.

• Savannah Williams of Murfreesboro said she plans to transfer to MTSU from Austin Peay State University, where she is a sophomore public relations and advertising major. After earning an MTSU Phillips Bookstore gift, Williams received a $1,000 scholarship from McPhee.

Ritu, left, Lalit and Aarushi Khanna listen and Linda Olsen, director of undergraduate recruitment at MTSU, discusses MTSU options they can consider at the Murfreesboro university during the Tuesday, Oct. 8, True Blue Tour at the Franklin Marriott Cool Springs. AArushi Khanna has applied and been accepted. (MTSU photo by Randy Weiler)

Ritu, left, Lalit and Aarushi Khanna listen and Linda Olsen, director of undergraduate recruitment at MTSU, discusses MTSU options they can consider at the Murfreesboro university during the Tuesday, Oct. 8, True Blue Tour at the Franklin Marriott Cool Springs. AArushi Khanna has applied and been accepted. (MTSU photo by Randy Weiler)

Franklin highlights

• Independence High senior Lauren Caldwell, 17, plans to apply for an MTSU Honors College Buchanan Fellowship — the top scholarship award any student can obtain — with a 32 ACT and weighted 4.4 GPA. “MTSU’s my top school,” she said

• Aarushi Khannz, 17, a senior at Ravenwood High in Brentwood, Tennessee, qualifies for a Presidential Scholarship with a 3.8 GPA and 29 ACT. Visiting with parents Ritu and Lalit Khanna, the prospective student has “visited MTSU twice, applied and received my acceptance letter last week.” They expressed an interest in the MTSU-Meharry Medical School Early Acceptance Program.

• A group of Grace Christian Academy seniors all sported 2019 True Blue Tour T-shirts and posed with McPhee for photos. Jeralyn Keeter of Thompson’s Station, mother of GCA’s Brennan Keeter, 17, talked at length about opportunities with Deb Sells, vice president of Student Affairs and vice provost for Enrollment and Academic Services. Born with Cerebral palsy, he wants to study aerospace’s unmanned aircraft systems or engineering technology’s experimental vehicles program.

• Vermont transplant and Columbia State Community College sophomore Reyna Reid of Thompson’s Station said after talking to MTSU’s leisure, sport and tourism studies officials that “everyone’s really excited about” the tourism and hospitality management program.

• Counselor and goody bag recipient Cassie Smith of Independence High School in Thompson’s Station received a $1,000 scholarship to share with her students after McPhee learned of how she shared previous scholarship awards with a student and former student.

On deck

Up next for the MTSU True Blue Tour staff and administrators will a visit to Kentucky. Louisville will be the next tour stop for a 12:30 p.m. luncheon and 6 p.m. student reception, both on Wednesday, Oct. 16, at the Louisville Marriott East, 1903 Embassy Square Blvd. To register, visit www.mtsu.edu/rsvp. Walk-ups are welcome.

MTSU vice president of Student Affairs Deb Sells, left, and Jeralyn Keeter discuss opportunities Brennan Keeter, center, will have as an MTSU student Tuesday, Oct. 8, during the annual True Blue Tour visit to Franklin, Tenn., at the Marriott Cool Springs. (MTSU photo by Randy Weiler)


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