Crossroads thus far

My name is Ashleigh Taylor and I am a 2010 Crossroads To Freedom Fellow this summer. I am an active member of the Hyde Park Community Team, with special interest in the educational influence and history.

This summer I have learned a lot from my research and genuine curiosity within HydePark. I have taken a unique interest in the history of Douglass High School, Manassas High School and Northside Highschool because of their similarities to my beloved institution THE Tennessee State University. The infrastructure and abundant history have repeatedly cemented my love for TSU more than ever.

Most notably, James Ashton Hayes was once the football coach for Tennessee Agricultural and Industrial College ( changed to TSU in the early 1950’s) was later responsible for the academic advancement and leadership Manassas High School experienced. Hayes credited his experiences at Tennessee A&I for his leadership efforts at Manassas. The high school even shares the same motto of Tennessee State: THINK WORK SERVE.

During my research in the Memphis Room of the Benjamin Hooks Library, I came across a letter to Mr. Hayes from Charles Owens class of 1955 from Manassas High. In the letter he thanked Mr. Hayes for inspiring him to attend college at none other than Tennessee State University. Owens discussed the fun times he experienced his first weeks in college such as the opening convocation, freshman student government elections and the annual presidential address.My heart could not help but fill with pride, because those same events I participated in as a freshman. Owens went on to be the SGA president of Tennessee State University during his senior year and resides in our archives as a notable alumni.

The fact that Crossroads has made me closer to my university through day-to-day activities puts me at a lost for words…

I have met so many people, networked with participants and gained a plethora of knowledge.

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Published in: on July 16, 2010 at 2:24 pm  Comments Off on Crossroads thus far  
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