Murfreesboro NAACP presents special awards to McPhees for community, education work

MTSU President Sidney A. McPhee and his wife Elizabeth McPhee were honored to receive presidential awards from the Murfreesboro branch of the NAACP as part of a virtual broadcast by Martin Luther King and Social Justice on Monday night.

Murfreesboro, Tenn. – MTSU President Sidney A. McPhee and his wife, MTSU First Lady Elizabeth McPhee, were presented on Monday evening with special awards from the NAACP Murfreesboro branch for their ongoing community service and support for students not served at the University and the Mayor. Urban schools.

McPhee was presented with the NAACP President’s Award during Martin Luther King’s virtual broadcast and Social Justice Festival.

“We are happy and happy to be honored,” said President McPhee, accepting the award from a longtime local NAACP member and first vice president, the Rev. Goldie Wade, who presented the award on behalf of current NAACP President Katie. Wilson.

“We have always sought to make this community a place for all citizens,” McPhee continued. “Our university is an important part of community development, and it reflects the work of many on our campus to make sure MTDU is an inclusive institution.”

For more than two decades under McPhee’s leadership, MTSU ranks second after the University of Tennessee in the total number of black graduates in all state institutions of the state, both men and women; MTSU has the highest level of six-year graduates among the state’s top three black producers in the latter cohort; and MTSU as of fall 2019 had the largest number of black men enrolled in land-allocating institutions.

Under McFi’s leadership, MTSU has also developed a number of student achievement programs to support underrepresented student groups, such as the Academy of Scholars and the STAR Program, or the Student Transition and Academic Readiness Program. Both programs are early arrival programs to help acclimatize first-generation students, underrepresented and unprepared, providing them with an introduction to college in a supportive learning environment.

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A member of the local NAACP executive committee, Aaron Treadwell, an associate professor of MTSU history, presented Mrs. McPhee, a retiree, a teacher at Murfreesboro City Schools, with her award “as a teacher and public works worker.”

Over the years, Mrs. McPhee has been active in a number of charitable organizations and initiatives, including extensive community service as a member of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority Inc. and is a member of the boards of the Martin Luther King Jr. Scholarship Fund. Rutherford County and the Murfreesboro City Schools Foundation to name a few.

“I am also very happy to have received this award, and it means so much to receive this award with my husband,” said Mrs. McPhee. “We’re trying to do our best to make it a better community.”

Wilson, the local president of the NAACP, said the longtime civil rights organization wants to give McFeese “for all the work they’ve done” for their more than 20 years of giving back to the Murfreesboro community and Rutherford County.

The traditional NAACP MLK breakfast on campus, where it presents various public works awards, was canceled this year after the NAACP national office asked local affiliates to hold virtual rather than personal events due to the ongoing pandemic, Wilson said.

“We thought it was a great opportunity to recognize both (McPhee),” Wilson said. “They have been excellent educators and continue to be educators, as well as providing services to community organizations and opening campuses to the community.”


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