He is True Blue

MTSU recently launched a new marketing campaign called “I Am True Blue.” What does it mean to be True Blue?

Sidney A. McPhee

MTSU is committed to developing and nurturing a community devoted to learning, growth, and service. We hold these values dear, and there’s a simple phrase that conveys them: “I am True Blue.”

We’re asking each person who affiliates with us to take the True Blue Pledge to practice the core values of honesty and integrity; respect for diversity; engagement in the community; and a commitment to reason, not violence.

For members of the faculty and administration, being True Blue also means to renew our commitment to the success of our students. MTSU, now more than a century old, is the number-one choice of undergraduates in Tennessee, as well as the number-one choice of our state’s transfer students and veterans. Why do so many people choose MTSU? I believe it is because we offer the amenities and opportunities of a major comprehensive institution, yet we have not forgotten our small-college roots in how we care for and treat our students. We offer terrific opportunities, exceptional value, and a beautiful campus.

The latest example of our student-first commitment is our new, state-of-the-art Student Union building, an open and inviting facility that will open in the summer of 2012.

MTSU recently announced some incredibly generous, transformative gifts from private individuals. Why is the Centennial Campaign needed, and what will it accomplish?

In anticipation of limited or reduced support from the state, MTSU has undertaken an intensive planning and evaluation process, which identified more than $175 million in opportunities where philanthropy would strengthen our position in the 21st-century marketplace of higher education, while building on the traditions that have characterized the University since its founding.

Some of the most vital priorities identified in this process are integral components of this campaign.

At its core, the focus of each priority is to enhance the quality of education and ensure the success of each of our students, faculty, and alumni—things that most directly impact the quality of the University.

Our initial goal to prepare MTSU for its second century of distinguished service is $80 million. More than half of that has already been raised. We need the assistance of our wonderful alumni base and other supporters of this great University to make this a reality.

MTSU recently broke ground on a new $147 million science building. It’s a project you’ve been pushing uphill for a long, long time. Now that ground has finally been broken, what are your thoughts?

I feel gratitude. We are grateful to Gov. Haslam for recognizing the importance of the Science Building project and including funding for its construction in this year’s budget. We also appreciate the leadership, encouragement, and support we have received from the members of the General Assembly, especially our local delegation. And we thank the Tennessee Board of Regents and the Tennessee Higher Education Commission for their help in moving this project forward.

Thank you for your time Mr. President.

What does it mean to be True Blue? Check out the MTSU True Blue site to find out!