TSU President Glover, administrators stress ‘meeting needs’ of students amid the COVID-19 pandemic in virtual meeting

SGA President Katelyn Thompson talks to students in virtual meeting.

Tennessee State University President Glenda Glover assured students that TSU is dedicated to accommodating them while they finish the semester remotely as a result of the coronavirus (COVID-19). Dr. Glover and other TSU administrators held a live meeting via Zoom with over 200 student leaders on April 2.

“I wanted to take this opportunity to just stop and make sure that we are meeting your needs,” Glover said. “We are going to do everything humanly possible to accommodate you to ensure that you succeed in spite of this very daunting challenge. It is tough for everyone across the world as we face the daily uncertainties and dangers that this virus presents. We’re going to do whatever we can to ensure that you remain whole.”

Students submitted their questions via the chat component. Topics included student refunds or credits, graduation, summer classes, and campus preparations for returning students in the fall. TSU registration opens tomorrow, and students may apply for housing now.

Student Government Association President Katelyn Thompson of Memphis, Tennessee, said she was pleased with what she heard from Dr. Glover and other top staff.

“I’m proud of the university and student body coming together,” said Thompson, a graduating senior double majoring in criminal justice and psychology. “At the end of the day, excellence is our habit. We can’t get anywhere unless we come together.”

Charlie Green, Jr., a senior from Jackson, Tennessee, agreed.

“This is a lesson for all of us,” said Green, a double major in architectural engineering and urban studies. “But Dr. Glover showed students that she’s about the business of making sure that we are taken care of and that our needs are being met.”

On March 16, TSU was the first public university in Tennessee to transition to all online classes as a precaution to contracting COVID-19. The university also canceled all campus events where large crowds are expected, and suspended all international travel through the end of April to minimize exposure to the disease. On March 23, the university ceased normal operations, allowing most employees to work remotely.

Ms. Junior Maya Howard, a business administration major, said she’s comfortable that when she returns to the university from Cincinnati, Ohio, the campus will be thoroughly sanitized.

“I noticed as I was moving out that they were on top of making sure that everything was clean,” said Howard.

The university has continued a complete wipe down to protect the campus from COVID-19 and other diseases. TSU is using professional cleaning companies with disinfectants and sanitizing equipment to wipe down its main campus and downtown location.

President Glover told students the virtual meeting would be the first of several she will hold to keep students updated on campus operations during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Since transitioning to all online instruction and telework for faculty and staff, the university has hosted several virtual student events, such as this. Last week, TSU made history by establishing a chapter of the National Music Honor Society, Pi Kappa Lambda, and inducting its first members.

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