Maintaining Our Legacy of Excellence

Honda Campus All-Star Challenge

The Honda Campus All-Star Challenge (HCASC) is a quiz bowl competition consisting of 64 of the nation’s Historically Black Colleges and Universities. Tennessee State University students are strongly encouraged to compete and represent the university in this nationally based academically challenging adventure. A local campus-based tournament is held in the fall to identify potential members for the national team. The participating institutions share in a grant pool of $328,000 each year. Moreover, all travel, housing and meals are covered by the sponsor, American Honda Motor Co., Inc for the coach and 4 players.

Career Planning/Graduate School

University Honors Program students are urged to make avail of the numerous information sources engaging in career planning. Departmental offices are excellent locations to begin this process. Also, the Graduate and Professional Opportunities Program, the University Counseling Center and the Career Development Center play key roles in this area. Throughout the year, mailings announcing available scholarships at prestigious graduate institutions are sent via email. Foundations and service organizations offer scholarship opportunities.

National Student Exchange (NSE)

The program aims to expand the boundaries of the TSU campus spreading across the USA and into its further territories and provide an opportunity for eligible students to study at another college or university in the United States and its territories. Specifically, this provide an opportunity for eligible students to widen their educational, social, and cultural horizons and to enrich their experiences.  In addition, it offers an avenue for TSU students to live in a different environment and have access to courses and programs not available on the TSU campus and enhance the academic programs and career opportunities of the students.  For more information, please visit the National Student Exchange Program website.

Professional Memberships/Affiliations

National Collegiate Honors Council (NCHC) Conference

            The National Collegiate Honors Council hosts its annual conference in the fall of each year.  The NCHC strives to cultivate excellence in American undergraduate education by assisting Honors programs to create and enhance academic, cultural, and social opportunities for exceptionally-able, highly-motivated undergraduate students.  Representatives from Honors programs of colleges and universities throughout the country attend the National Collegiate Honors Council Conference.  The conference allows for a free exchange of programming ideas, as well as investigation of issues of significant intellectual merit. 


Southern Regional Honors Council (SRHC) Conference

            The Southern Regional Honors Council is a regional group of Honors programs, which includes colleges and universities from the southern states.  Each spring, the SRHC hosts its annual conference which focuses on a specific theme.  In addition to guest speakers, panel presentations, and elections for student representatives, there are social events that afford opportunities for networking developing friendships.  For those students who successfully submit a proposal for inclusion in the program at the regional and national levels, the University Honors Program supports travel expenses to the function, conference registration fees and lodging at the site.


Tennessee Collegiate Honors Council (TCHC) Conference

            The Tennessee Collegiate Honors Council is a conglomerate of Honors programs in the State of Tennessee.  Typically, the state conference is held in the spring of each year.  Students again have an opportunity to meet like-minded, bright, and articulate individuals who have vision and determination to make a difference and contribute actively to the communities in which they live.  Also, proposals are submitted for inclusion to the conference program. 


Thurgood Marshall College Fund (TMCF)

Thurgood Marshall College Fund (formerly Thurgood Marshall Scholarship Fund) was founded under the leadership of Dr. N. Joyce Payne in cooperation with Miller Brewing Company, Sony Music, the NBA, Reebok, and the American Association for State Colleges and Universities . TMCF is the only national organization to provide merit scholarships, programmatic and capacity building support to 47 public HBCUs. Since its inception, TMCF has provided more than $68 million in scholarships and programmatic support to students attending the 47 member public HBCUs and six Historically Black Law Schools.  Through the TMCF Leadership Institute and the Member Universities Professional Institute and Exhibition, students are exposed to resources and knowledge needed to be successful in the job market through networking.




Alpha Kappa Mu National Honor Society                                                                         Dr. D. Lee McGahey, Advisor

Alpha Kappa Mu Honor Society is a general scholarship honor society open to junior and senior men and women in all academic disciplines.  It was founded at Tennessee A&I College (now Tennessee State University) in Nashville on November 26, 1937.  The purpose of the Society is to promote high scholarship; to encourage sincere and zealous endeavors in all fields of knowledge and service; to cultivate a high order of personal living; and to develop an appreciation for scholarly work and scholarly endeavor in others.  With more than 65 active chapters on campuses of regionally accredited colleges and universities and more than 75, 000 academically gifted and talented men and women committed to the charge to: continue in the pursuit of knowledge; develop a trained intellect, toward the end of making a positive contribution to improving the quality of life in our communities; dream better dreams, aspire to greater heights, and strive to realize our fullest intellectual capacities; provide leadership and service to others, as well as reflect in our daily lives the example of creative and contributing citizenship; and uphold the ideals and principles upon which Alpha Kappa Mu Honor Society was founded, and to make our personal contributions to preserving the efficacy of those ideals and principles.


Golden Key International Honor Society                                                                         Dr. D. Lee McGahey, Advisor

The goals of the Society are to recognize and encourage scholastic achievement and excellence in all undergraduate fields of study, to unite with faculty and administrators in developing and maintaining high standards of education, to provide economic assistance to outstanding members by means of both undergraduate and graduate scholarships, and to promote altruistic conduct through voluntary service.  Membership is by invitation to those students who are in the top 15 percent of their junior and senior class.  Full-time as well as part-time students qualify, and members include both traditional and non-traditional students.  The TSU Golden Key chapter was chartered in May 1978.  Worldwide, there are more than 250 chapters.

Honor Society of Phi Kappa Phi                                                                                   Dr. D. Lee McGahey (President)

The primary objective of the national Honor Society of Phi Kappa Phi is the recognition and encouragement of superior scholarship in all academic disciplines.  The Society is convinced that in recognizing and honoring those persons of good character who have excelled in scholarship, in whatever field, it will stimulate others to strive for excellence.  Moreover, the society serves the interests of the student capable of excellence by insisting that in order to acquire a chapter of Phi Kappa Phi, an institution provide the means and atmosphere conductive to academic excellence.  Phi Kappa Phi was founded in 1897 and has 281 chapters.  The TSU chapter was established in October 1993.


National Society of Collegiate Scholars                                                                       Dr. Adebayo Oyebade, Advisor

The National Society of Collegiate Scholars (NSCS) is comprised of first and second year students in all academic disciplines who, among other requirements, have distinguished themselves by attaining at least a grade point average (GPA) of 3.4 and rank in the top 20% of their class.  The society aims at recognizing and celebrating high academic achievement among its members; encouraging and promoting high standards throughout their collegiate experience; and providing them an opportunity for personal growth and leadership development. 


Phi Eta Sigma                                                                                                                       Dr. Erik Schmeller, Advisor

Phi Eta Sigma is a national honor society rewarding first-year collegiate scholarship.  The oldest and largest first year honor society, Phi Eta Sigma was founded at the University of Illinois in 1923, and the Tennessee State University Chapter was founded in 2004.  The motto of the society is, “Knowledge is Power”.



One of the most attractive aspects of the UHP is the summer internship. Our students have been placed with such major corporations and universities as Hospital Corporation of America (HCA), EXXON, McDonnell Douglas Corporation, the University of Maryland, the University of Mississippi, the University of California at Santa Monica, Ohio State, Michigan State, Purdue, Howard, Yale, Harvard University, and the National Institute of Health.




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