Dr. David Butler wants MTSU’s research, scholarly efforts and creative activity with Scholars Week to continue to flourish — and reach beyond university borders to industry leaders, government officials and the public.
Led by MTSU students, a four-man team with a year-old designer concrete business appears to be one of those groups and individuals hitting the target for what Butler, the university’s new vice provost for research and dean of the College of Graduate Studies, envisions as avenues of growth.
The annual Scholars Week, a full week of scholarly efforts, activities and performances, concluded with the universitywide Scholars Day March 31 in the Student Union Ballroom and “The Garden Party,” the annual Textiles, Merchandising and Design Runway Show April 1 in the Miller Education Center.
Scholars Week recognizes the research, scholarly efforts, creativity and performance talents of undergraduate, graduate and high school students and faculty.
“Scholars Week is a great idea. It’s something we should have, and it needs to be built bigger and better each year,” Butler said. “It is an ideal avenue to showcase all the research and creative activity within MTSU. We can invite people outside the university to see all the exciting research and creative activity going on at MTSU.”
The public, elected officials and business leaders in the region, who will be targeted invitees in 2018, are atop Butler’s list.
“MTSU’s a large employer — a large financial engine — and often people don’t know the exciting and cutting edge research happening on campus,” added Butler, who’s completing his first three months on the job. “We’re moving forward and inviting key constituents. We’re going to bring more visibility to Scholars Week and see it improve each year.”
MTSU alumnus and graduate student Thomas Harris, sophomore Kirkland Atkins, senior Kendall Bacchus and Darian Robinson started Accoa LLC, a designer concrete business, in March 2016. Their Scholars Week poster presentation has made the finals of the Jones College of Business spring 2017 Business Plan Competition.
“Scholars Week is a great week to exhibit talent that’s inherent at MTSU,” said Harris, 26, of South Fulton, Tennessee, who is earning his executive MBA in Concrete Industry Management.
“Every student has worked hard with their individual endeavors and exhibit what MTSU is producing into the workforce.”
About 225 posters were showcased at the universitywide Scholars Day.
Three short plays, two dance performances and one theater performance were included in the universitywide Scholars Day activities in the area outside the ballroom.
Destiny Donald, Alex Irwin and Laura Pickard presented the short plays “God’s Weapon,” “World’s Best Mom” and “Her Daughter Angelo,” respectively, under the guidance of faculty mentor Claudia Barnett.
Dance performances featured “Ceremonial Figure,” a re-imagining of a Mary Wigman choreography for an Honors College thesis by Ginny Whaley, and “Suite from Orfeo ed Eurydice,” a preview of MTSU Dance Theatre’s spring concert with choreography by Isadora Duncan staged by faculty member Meg Brooker.
The “Hear My Voice” theater performance featured Beth Ann Stripling, Brianna Smart and Paul Gary in a selection of empowering pieces, including the work of Dolly Parton, Jason Robert Brown, Maltby and Shire, and others. The theater faculty member is assistant professor Kristi Shamburger.
For a complete list of universitywide Scholars Day undergraduate and graduate poster winners by college, visit www.mtsu.edu/scholarsweek/docs/SWwinners2017.pdf. Winning posters will be displayed through April 14 in the James E. Walker Library.
For more on Scholars Week, visit www.mtsu.edu/scholarsweek or call 615-494-7600.
— Randy Weiler (Randy.Weiler@mtsu.edu)
MTSU research is focus of annual Scholars Week March 27-April 1
Research, special events and performances are being showcased March 27-April 1 during the annual MTSU Scholars Week, which recognizes the ongoing scholarly efforts and research at the university.
Colleges, centers and departments hold Scholars Day activities during the week. The universitywide Scholars Day runs from 12:40 to 3:15 p.m. Friday, March 31.
To conclude the week, the Department of Human Science’s textiles, merchandising and design program will hold its annual Garden Party 2017 TXMD Runway Show at 5 p.m. Saturday, April 1, in the Miller Education Center on Bell Street.
Tickets are required and can be purchased through https://tinyurl.com/lksgggq.
For more information and the full schedule, visit www.mtsu.edu/scholarsweek. All events are open to the public.
Helping kick events off March 27 are:
- Dr. Tim Odegard, Murfree Chair of Excellence in Dyslexic Studies at MTSU, speaking at 5:30 p.m. in College of Education Building Room 160.
- Noted author Nicholas “Nick” Carr, presenting the Scholars Week keynote adress at 7 p.m. in the Student Union Ballroom. His talk is expected to center on the influence of the Internet.
- A free performance by traditional string musicians Bobby Taylor on fiddle and Ken Perlman on banjo at 8 p.m. in MTSU’s State Farm Lecture Hall, Room S-102, in the Business and Aerospace Building, presented by the Center for Popular Music.
The Strickland Visiting Scholar Program and the MTSU Distinguished Lecturers Fund are sponsoring Carr’s keynote with additional support from the Department of Computer Information Systems, the Department of History, the Office of the Provost, the Office of Research and the College of Liberal Arts.
Faculty and Scholars Week committee member Andrienne Friedli reports the number of posters for the universitywide Scholars Day March 31 “has grown by 25 percent over Scholars Week 2016.”
Performances are scheduled for 11:30 a.m. and 2:15 p.m. March 31 in the area just outside the ballroom.
For more information, call 615-494-7600.
— Randy Weiler (Randy.Weiler@mtsu.edu)
Noted author Nick Carr helps kick off MTSU Scholars Week March 27
Best-selling author and culture critic Nicholas “Nick” Carr will deliver the MTSU Scholars Week keynote address at 7 p.m. Monday, March 27, in the Student Union Ballroom.
A group of MTSU students will meet and visit with Carr — 2011 Pulitzer Prize finalist and author of New York Times bestselling book “The Shallows: What the Internet is Doing to Our Brains” in the general nonfiction category — before his talk.
The lecture is open to the public. To find parking and the Student Union, visit http://tinyurl.com/MTSUParkingMap.
Scholars Week emphasizes the research, scholarly efforts and collaboration of undergraduate and graduate students and faculty. To learn more about Scholars Week at MTSU, including a complete schedule of events March 27-31, www.mtsu.edu/scholarsweek/index.php.
Carr is a stimulating and thought-provoking speaker on issues related to technology, culture and business, according to his website, www.nicholascarr.com.
In his presentation, Carr will provide an examination of how the Internet influences the brain and its neutral pathways, concluding with a petition for balancing our human and computer interactions.
“He’ll be talking about the Internet and how it has changed the way we read, write and think,” said Dr. Susan Myers-Shirk, interim chair in the Department of History. “It’s an ideal keynote lecture for Scholars Week because the Internet has clearly changed how scholars work.”
Myers-Shirk said she and other Scholars Week leaders look forward to Carr’s appearance.
He has spoken to professional and academic audiences around the world, including providing the keynote address at Google’s first Atmosphere conference in London, England; at the Seoul Digital Forum; at Futurecom in Rio de Janiero, Brazil; Dreamforce conference in San Francisco, California; and at MIT, Dartmouth, Harvard, NASA and other schools and institutions.
Carr’s books have been published in 30 countries.
The keynote lecture is presented by the Strickland Visiting Scholar Program and the MTSU Distinguished Lecturers Fund with additional support from the Department of Computer Information Systems, the Department of History, the Office of the Provost, the Office of Research and the College of Liberal Arts.
You can listen to Myers-Shirk discuss Carr’s visit on a recent edition of “MTSU On the Record,” which aired on WMOT-FM Roots Radio 89.5 and www.wmot.org, here.
— Randy Weiler (Randy.Weiler@mtsu.edu)