MTSU: Special Library Exhibit, Core Classes for Students and Alumni Involvement

Mar 18, 2024 at 09:15 am by WGNS News

Susan Martin, Susan Hanson, Dr. Susan Myers-Shirk, Dr. Christina Cobb and Beth Dye


SEGMENT ONE GUESTS: Susan Martin, Special Collections librarian at the James E. Walker Library, and Susan Hanson, Special Collections curator

TOPIC: Walker Library Special Collections exhibits celebrating the department’s anniversary, history of printing

 Special Collections at Middle Tennessee State University’s James E. Walker Library is celebrating its 25th anniversary with an open house March 12 and two exhibits highlighting the history of the department and the evolution of printing.

Special Collections was established in 1999 when Walker Library opened for use and features carefully procured collections of rare books and materials. A small room at the front of Special Collections displays memorabilia related to its history and will be on display through the end of 2024.

The “Printing for the People: Press and Print in Everyday Life” exhibit will be on display until the end of the semester and features books, correspondence, stamps and advertising items. 

“The exhibit takes you through different aspects of life, with the idea of showcasing how important print has been in people’s lives, and what kinds of material and ephemera you come across,” explained Susan Martin, Special Collections librarian. 

Most people associate printing with books, said Susan Hanson, Special Collections curator. But printing led to so much more and infiltrated many aspects of life. The exhibit showcases some of those areas that were affected by innovations in printing.

“We are also trying to show print came out in a variety of forms, from the simple trading cards and flyers to blurbs and small catalogs. Print reached and shaped countless aspects of life.”

Featured topics include:

  • Education

  • Leisure

  • Civic Culture

  • Domestic/home

  • Correspondence

  • Business

  • Religion

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SEGMENT TWO GUESTS: MTSU history professor Dr. Susan Myers-Shirk, director of MTSU General Education/True Blue Core, and Dr. Christina Cobb, associate professor in University Studies

TOPIC: The new True Blue Core general education curriculum at MTSU

Critical thinking, problem-solving and informational literacy are at the heart of Middle Tennessee State University’s restructured general education program, which will be implemented at the beginning of the fall 2024 semester.

True Blue Core — the name for the newly revamped set of requirements — was officially unveiled in late February at a launch party and program at the MT Center.

“True Blue Core is the foundation for academic, professional and personal success as well as informed civic engagement and lifelong learning,” explained history professor Susan Myers-Shirk, director of MTSU General Education/True Blue Core.

Program changes have been five years in the making, Myers-Shirk said, with the goal of preparing students excel in a dynamic and diverse world.

“We started the process in 2018 and in the spring of 2021, we approved eight new student learning outcomes and the following spring, we approved a restructuring of the general education curriculum,” Myers-Shirk said. “It’s been a universitywide project.”

The True Blue Core Committee — comprised of faculty, students and staff — developed guidelines for coursework designed to provide students with relevant skills and knowledge they need to succeed in their majors, careers and beyond, she said.

The previous general education guidelines were the same across all state colleges and universities. Prior to 2017, MTSU was governed by the Tennessee Board of Regents and part of the State University and Community College System of Tennessee. 

General education encompasses 41 hours of courses each MTSU student must have on their transcript, such as English, math and history.

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SEGMENT THREE GUEST: Beth Dye, assistant director, MTSU Office of Alumni Relations

TOPIC: Alumni Spring Showcase set for April 5-13

Dozens of events and activities will be a part of the Middle Tennessee State University Office of Alumni Relations Alumni Spring Showcase, running from April 5-13.

There’s a little something for everyone — student-led Theatre and Dance production of  “The Ruminants,” Positive Aging Conference (March 22 registration deadline), special library exhibits, directing courses for those with arts interest, an Alumni Family Fun Night at the Rec, and wrapping up on the final day with a slate athletics events including Lady Raider tennis and soccer, the Blue Raider Football Spring Game, and Blue Raider baseball — and more on the agenda.

While some events are free and open to the public, others may require registration, tickets or other costs. Also, those alumni visiting campus must have a parking permit to park on campus Monday-Friday, but complimentary parking permits are available at the Alumni House, 2259 Middle Tennessee Blvd. OR you can purchase and print a permit for $2/day.

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