ABOVE: TSU President Dr. Lesia Crumpton-Young, Arlington Mayor Jim Ross, members of the TSU Board of Regents, faculty, administrators, staff, students, and alumni at ribbon cutting ceremony to honor the occasion
Texas Southern University (TSU) recently established a tangible long-term presence in the Dallas-Fort Worth Metroplex by opening the Arlington Recruitment Office at Choctaw Stadium in Arlington, TX.
President Lesia Crumpton-Young, along with members of the TSU Board of Regents, administrators, faculty, staff, students, and alumni held a ribbon cutting ceremony on April 12th to honor the occasion. They were also joined by Arlington mayor Jim Ross.
“Texas Southern University is pleased to expand our robust recruiting efforts in the Dallas-Fort Worth Metroplex and to partner with the City of Arlington in doing so,” said TSU President Dr. Crumpton-Young. “This recruitment center represents the University’s commitment to removing barriers for our prospective and current scholars that may prevent them from matriculating and graduating from our esteemed institution. It will serve as a resource for those families, especially for families that are going through the application and enrollment processes for the first time.”
The recruitment office will be staffed with someone who will be able to help prospective students, and their parents, complete applications, financial aid paperwork, and much more.
“The City of Arlington is excited to partner with Texas Southern University in this commitment to ensuring more students from Arlington and the entire Dallas-Fort Worth Metroplex have access to an outstanding college education,” said Arlington mayor Jim Ross. “TSU is one of the premier universities in the state of Texas. We look forward to the work that will be done to make the path to a degree easier for students in our region.”
The Dallas-Fort Worth Metroplex is home to TSU’s largest recruitment and alumni bases, outside of Houston.
This announcement was followed by other exciting news this month, as TSU partnered with PNC Bank to launch the PNC Regional Center for Entrepreneurship, which will provide programming, access to capital, education, research, and much more to help expand opportunities for Black businesses across the country.
The launch of the PNC Regional Center for Entrepreneurship at TSU follows the opening of the National Center for Entrepreneurship supported by Howard University, which is focused on serving as a catalyst for economic opportunity for HBCU students, alums, and African American entrepreneurs broadly. PNC has committed $500,000 a year for five years, totaling $2.5 million to support this initiative.
“We are very excited about this entrepreneurship program, which will engage curriculum, research, the community and students,” said Dr. David Yen, dean of the Jesse H. Jones School of Business. “The TSU and PNC Regional Center for Entrepreneurship will leverage the University’s efforts to increase entrepreneurship in a more focused and collaborative way to serve as a resourceful hub that we know will enhance entrepreneurship education and empower young entrepreneurs of color. We look forward to the ways in which this initiative will grow businesses and economic opportunity within our community.”
Through the grant from PNC Foundation, TSU joins an affiliated consortium of schools to extend the national programming. The other institutions include Clark Atlanta and Morgan State universities. With the PNC Regional Center for Entrepreneurship at TSU, students, families, and local entrepreneurs can tap into resources to help grow their businesses.
The initiative at Texas Southern University will be led by new PNC Regional Center for Entrepreneurship Director Robert Dunlap, who has worked as an auditor for Lockheed Martin, and as Western Regional Director at Enactus—an organization focused on educating, inspiring, and supporting young people to use innovation and entrepreneurship to solve the world’s biggest problems.
Most recently, Dunlap was the Assistant Programs Regional Director for INROADS South Central Region, where he was responsible for all operations in Arkansas, Louisiana, Oklahoma, and Texas.
“I am excited to begin this journey with PNC and Texas Southern University,” said Dunlap. “We know entrepreneurs of color have had persistent barriers to succeeding. This Center’s purpose is to educate and empower them with resources to remove those barriers in every way possible. The campus community and the community around us will be better because of the work that we will do here.”
The PNC Regional Center for Entrepreneurship will also help build African American small businesses’ capacity by leveraging partnerships with local chambers of commerce and other institutions to provide mentorship and networking opportunities.
“We are making significant progress on our commitment to support the economic empowerment of Black Americans and low- to moderate-income communities,” said Richard Bynum, chief corporate responsibility officer for PNC. “The five-year grant to create a model for a nationally recognized PNC National Center for Entrepreneurship is a major part of this pledge.”
In addition, the PNC Regional Center for Entrepreneurship will partner with Black businesses to improve credit, increase access to capital, provide undergraduate and graduate students hands-on experience with working with Black businesses and entrepreneurs, provide access to technologies that can increase the success of Black businesses, provide access to TSU’s procurement process, assist with applying for loans, and help Black businesses with opportunities to gain access to other forms of capital to grow their business.