Final Exams at UTC

By: Victoria Hampstead

Chattanooga, Tenn. (UTC/ The Loop) -For many, what happens in the next week or so will be a huge determinate for if their semester was considered successful or not. Yes, finals week has arrived on the campus of UTC.

Several students study at the Lupton Library

Throughout the semester time management, studying, and papers come and go but when finals begin there is a subtle shift in the air. For many, the tests, assignments, presentations, and papers due for finals carry much more weight than those due over the entire semester. For example, in one General Science class the research paper is worth over 25% of the final grade. With statistics like these, the notable influx to the Lupton Library is not without reason.

It’s true, the library is much more active during the last couple weeks of school. This is clear if you simply go to the desk and the answer is “we are out of computers”.  Does this indicate a change of study habits during finals?

Maggie Dougherty, a junior and communications major at UTC, said she notices the change in the library around finals saying she can’t focus because there are so many people.

Maggie Dougherty on the library during finals

Lauren Vantrese, a Junior Bio-Chemistry major, appreciates the Lupton Library during finals as a common meeting place for students.

Lauren Vantrese comments on the library

When it comes to studying in general, Jordan Foutch, 21-year-old Chemistry major says his study habits don’t change much when it’s time for finals. “My study habits are pretty much the same because they are so closely spaced together that you don’t have time to space them out.” Foutch also noted that while he retains information pretty well he feels that having to study in such a rushed manner causes him to put less effort into studying overall.  When asked what keeps Foutch motivated his answer was simple,

Brad Gibson, Chemical Engineering major, studying at the Lupton Library

“Getting accepted to Med School.”

Senior Kevin Brown, a mechanical engineering major, echoed Foutch in his frustrations about finals. Brown said by finals “I give up, I’m burnt out by the time they come around.” Although he is willing to admit “My study habits are sloppy, Helter Skelter if you will,” Brown said some motivators for him are will power in the form of friends and Red Bull.

Finals can be difficult for many but there are resources for help. William Rapaport, of New York at buffalo has several suggestions for handling exams. His article “How to Study: A Brief Guide” has helpful tips for studying in general but when it comes to exams he narrows it down.  He urges students to not simply re-read the text book, make a study outline, do sample problems, make flash cards, and finally stop studying when you are confident.

UTC takes note of the need and sometimes the time management issues students have for studying during finals and therefore the Lupton Library makes some changes for finals. Starting on Monday, April 25, Library hours extend to two in the morning on many weekdays and extend other hours throughout the week. This new schedule helps facilitate studying for many.

As exams approach, it may also be useful to note the exam schedule on UTC’s website.

Faculty could be allowed to carry guns on campuses in Tennessee

by Lauren Carter

CHATTANOOGA, Tenn. (UTC/The Loop) – Students may soon enter college classrooms where their professor has a handgun on the desk during lecture, an idea that was once thought impossible but is now closer to reality than ever.

HB 2016, a bill sponsored by Tennessee Republican Rep. Andy Holt of Dresden, would allow faculty and staff with handgun carry permits to bring their guns to campus. The current law prohibits anyone other than law enforcement to bring weapons to campus.

Students walk to class on 'Cardiac Hill' on UTC's campus. Faculty and staff with handgun permits may soon be allowed to carry guns on campus. Photo by Lauren Carter

In a release from the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga, the administration stated their opposition of “a bill that would allow more people to carry guns on campus, contributing to unsafe conditions for students, faculty, staff, and visitors.”

“We consider our responsibility to provide a safe campus environment among our top priorities,” said UTC Chancellor Roger Brown. “Campus law enforcement and law enforcement leaders from across Tennessee have said more guns on campus would not make campuses safer,” Brown said.

The statement from UTC administrators said that higher education leaders have joined police forces statewide, as well as the Tennessee Association of Chiefs of Police in opposition to this proposal.

The law enforcement group said in a letter to the General Assembly, that allowing guns on campus could create difficult scenarios for police who wouldn’t be able to determine the motives of armed people on campus.

The group also said handgun carry permit holders don’t have the training needed to handle guns in stressful and dangerous situations.

“From a law enforcement perspective, having more people with guns on campus increases the risk for a situation to occur and decreases safety.” UTC Police Chief Robert Ratchford said in the administrator’s statement. “Police officers are trained to handle situations. To have others get involved in a situation only complicates matters and raises the risk of injury,” Ratchford said.

Faculty and student government organizations at UTC have also opposed the bill.

Dr. Victoria Steinberg, Professor of French and President of the UTC Faculty Senate, said in the administrator’s statement, “As a faculty member at UTC, I can assure you that I feel quite safe with the current level of security and protection afforded by our campus police in coordination with city police, and therefore do not feel that arming students or faculty would do anything except complicate security.”

Students travel outside UTC's Lupton Library in between class. Faculty and staff may soon be able to carry handguns on campus if HB2016 is passed. Photo by Lauren Carter

UTC is not the only campus in the University of Tennessee system that is opposing the bill.

In a previous statement, University of Tennessee President Joe DiPietro said, “The University of Tennessee has repeatedly stated its opposition to allowing anyone other than law enforcement officers to carry guns while on campus.”

DiPietro said that the safety of all students, faculty and staff is a responsibility that is taken seriously. Campuses work with law enforcement to take measures to create the safest environments possible, however campuses will not become safer with more gun carriers, DiPietro said.

Republican Gov. Bill Haslam and Senate Speaker Ron Ramsey are also working together against the bill.

Haslam told The Associated Press in a recent statement that he wants to leave it up to administrators at each school to decide whether to allow guns to be carried by anyone other than law enforcement.

Ramsey told The Associated Press that the only major gun bill he wants to focus on is one that would ban businesses from prohibiting their employees from storing guns in cars parked on company lots.

“I want to concentrate on what I think is meaningful and what will help Second Amendment, gun carry permit holders the most,” Ramsey said. “And I do think that guns on campus is a sideline that we don’t need to be getting to right now.”

The number of Tennessee handgun carry permit holders in January was nearly 308,000, a 40 percent increase since January 2009.

Members of the organization ‘Concealed Campus’ lobby for the right to carry guns on campus and their views of their 2nd Amendment rights.



How can the UTC campus grow?

By Richard Sailors


To the north, south, east, and west houses, churches, office buildings, hospitals, and rivers surround UTC.

According to the master plan for the campus, the first goal is to have a preferred campus size by balancing growth with available resources.

This plan was developed in 2000 to fit 10,000 full-time students. Sept. 9,2009 UTC surpassed that mark with enrollment of 10,526 students.

Because building space on campus is limited, officials knew campus growth would be difficult. “It was once considered impossible to move our campus beyond McCallie Ave.,” Dr. Richard Brown, vice chancellor for Finance and Operations, said.

Since McCallie Avenue has turned into a two-lane road, it has helped with student safety when they cross that street, Brown said. UTC has grown mostly because it is a place students want to come to, he said.

Now UTC is faced with the problem of lack of space for residents. “In housing, it is not our goal to have people in hotels,” Janet Spraker, director of Engineering Services, said.  210 students in the 2009 fall semester roomed at downtown hotels.  Brown said an additional 200 students were denied admission to UTC because of a lack of residential space.

A lot of effort was put into the housing and Brown said he thinks that is a reason why UTC has seen the growth. About 35 percent of the students at UTC are residents.  Brown said and if the university is going to grow more, it is going to need more room to place people.

“We are going to get rid of the surface area parking lots and add multilevel parking decks,” Brown said. Each parking deck would hold 500 to 1,000 cars, he said.