UPDATE: Donate school supplies now until Aug. 3 fo...

UPDATE: Donate school supplies now until Aug. 3 for United Way ‘Stuff the Bus’ event

Middle Tennessee State University’s College of Education will host the “Stuff the Bus” drop-off party, where volunteers will stuff backpacks with school supplies to provide to local students, on Thursday, Aug. 3, from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the Middle Tennessee Lot at the corner of Greenland Drive and Middle Tennessee Boulevard in Murfreesboro. (MTSU graphic illustration by Stephanie Wagner)

MTSU’s College of Education will host the culminating drop-off party event of this year’s “Stuff the Bus” initiative coordinated by the United Way of Rutherford and Cannon Counties

“We are excited about this opportunity to work with and support this event and United Way,” said Robyn Ridgley, associate dean of the college. “As an institution and college, we strive to have strong partnerships with our neighboring communities. … This initiative is one small way to connect with and support our local families, students and schools.”

Dr. Robyn Ridgley

The initiative collects community school supply and monetary donations to provide local students with the materials they need to be prepared for the classroom. Organizers emphasized that no donation is too small, and the initiative’s website details how, where and what those interested can do to contribute — including a list of needed materials — at

Donations can also be dropped off on campus until Wednesday, Aug. 2, at collection bins by the elevators on the first and second floors of the COE building, located at 1756 MTSU Blvd. until Wednesday, Aug. 2.

(UPDATE: Due to forecasted inclement weather, the Stuff the Bus collection party will no longer take place on campus this Thursday, Aug. 3, from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. but at the updated location of the First Baptist Church at 200 E. Main St., in Murfreesboro, Tennessee, where volunteers will help stuff backpacks in the gymnasium. Organizers ask that attendees use the entrance at the corner of Academy and Vine Streets across from the Murfreesboro Fire Department. A map can be found at

First launched in 2012, the Stuff the Bus initiative has since provided over 22,000 local students with school supplies; last year alone, they collected almost 1,500 backpacks.

With current estimates showing parents spend about $1,000 per child to cover the costs of school supplies, technology and extracurriculars, organizers say they hope to collect enough donations of supplies to prepare more fully loaded backpacks this year. 

“United Way is thrilled to partner with MTSU’s College of Education on this year’s Stuff the Bus, which is a communitywide initiative … to collect school supplies and get them into the hands of children who need them most,” said Meagan Flippin, president and CEO of the local United Way chapter of the event, which is presented by City Auto.

“We partner with the school districts to disseminate the school supplies, so it makes sense that the College of Education is our partner in the collection effort, including the official collection day event.”

To learn more about other upcoming events and opportunities at the College of Education, visit its website at or its Facebook page at

— Stephanie Wagner (