The Most Wonderful Time of the Year

By: Cody Mohon

CHATTANOOGA, Tenn. (The Loop)-The cool, crisp air of fall winds its way through campus, tossing fallen leaves aside. The leaves are changing and a rainbow of colors paint the blue sky. Many students cringe away from the approaching cold, dreading finals and the chillier months ahead. However, junior Nathalia Vargas couldn’t be happier. Fall is her favorite season in beautiful Chattanooga.

“The weather is just so perfect and soothing. The temperature is in the 70’s which is great for doing anything outdoors.” Vargas said. “I just love everything about fall; the colors, the scents, the changing of the leaves, and the coming of winter. It’s very exciting!”

Beautiful fall scenery at Signal Point on Signal Mountain.

Beautiful fall scenery at Signal Point on Signal Mountain.

Chattanooga always has plenty of outdoor activities going on, but with the recent perfect weather it is almost impossible to remain indoors. When asked what her favorite fall activities are, Vargas replied, ”Hiking! Signal Point is a great place to go to just relax and soak up the season. Also, pumpkin carving and dressing up for Halloween are always fun!”

Plan your own hike at Signal Point here!

“It’s also great that this is the only time of the year that pumpkin stuff is really popular like pumpkin pie, and pumpkin drinks. Especially pumpkin lattes from Starbucks! Also, candy corn because you don’t really buy those any other time of the year! I just enjoy all the fall flavors.”

Being from Memphis, Vargas is used to the flat scenery that surrounds it. “In Memphis it is really plain so it’s hard to enjoy fall colors there as much. Even just driving from Memphis to Chattanooga you can see the different colored trees covering the mountains. It’s a beautiful drive!”

Vargas even dreams of tying the knot during this vibrant time of year. “I would love to get married during the fall. It just has so many wonderful colors and textures. I want to be in the mountains with the leaves changing color and my wedding colors to reflect the reds, browns, and oranges of the season.”

Vargas soaking up her favorite season at Signal Point.

Vargas soaking up her favorite season at Signal Point.

With Thanksgiving break quickly approaching, all students understand how hard it is to remain in a classroom even when the weather isn’t as breathtaking as it has been. When asked if she felt the need to break out of the classroom, Vargas replied, “Yes!  I would rather be outside enjoying the scenery and the leaves and the weather than be cooped up in a classroom any day.”

Men’s Basketball Tickets on Sale for Upcoming Season

CHATTANOOGA, Tenn (UTC/The Loop) — Tickets for the defending SoCon Champs, the Chattanooga Mocs Men’s Basketball Team have gone on sale.

The schedule features 17 home games, including a headline matchup against the ACC’s Georgia Tech. The Yellow Jackets are making the trip to Chattanooga’s McKenzie Arena for the first time in almost two decades.

Season tickets can be purchased at Ticket Office located at Gate One of McKenzie Arena.

Season tickets can be purchased at Ticket Office located at Gate One of McKenzie Arena.

“This is a home schedule that fans of all ages will be able to enjoy,” said Athletic Director Rick Hart. “John (Shulman) and his staff have done a great job putting together a competitive schedule in an economic climate that makes it increasingly difficult.”

Season tickets can be purchased online by visiting, or by calling the ticket office at (423) 266-MOCS. Fans can also buy tickets by visiting McKenzie Arena’s ticket office at Gate One. Season ticket prices begin at $75, and are just $50 for UTC employees, alumni, and youth. Lower level reserved seating is also available, but require a donation to the UTC Mocs Club. Lower level tickets are priced at $175, and $100 for university employees and alumni.

“We are not raising ticket prices, despite the increase in home games,” said Hart. “We have also worked hard to put together a number of packages to fit every budget,” he added, emphasizing the athletic department’s commitment to keep ticket prices affordable during these tough economic times.

The annual Dr. Pepper Classic, December 29-30, looks to be especially strong this year, featuring Morgan State, who appeared in the NCAA Tournament last season. Eastern Kentucky and Long Island will also be included in the tournament field.

Another intriguing matchup in the early season is that with instate rival East Tennessee State University, who will face the Mocs November 17 at McKenzie Arena. Other notable non-conference opponents for UTC include Missouri, Richmond, Jacksonville State, and Murray State.

This years Blue and Gold Tipoff will be at the First Tennessee Pavilion after the Football team's Moc Walk

This years Blue and Gold Tipoff will be at the First Tennessee Pavilion after the Football team's Moc Walk

As the Mocs prepare to defend their Southern Conference Championship from a year ago, head coach John Shulman is cautiously optimistic, but far from over confident. “I really like this team and its potential,” but added, “Potential is a nasty, nasty word. You’d like to have a lot of known commodities. There is very little known about this team.”

Both the Men and Women’s Basketball teams will officially kick off their season Saturday, October 31 with the “Blue and Gold Tipoff” which has been moved to the First Tennessee Pavilion next to Finley Stadium. Activities will begin immediately following the football teams’ Moc Walk at 11:45 a.m. before their game against Western Carolina.

Home Schedule:

  • 11/13: Tennessee Wesleyan (Exb.)
  • 11/13: Virginia Intermont
  • 11/17: ETSU
  • 12/5: Elon
  • 12/12: Mississippi Valley State
  • 12/14: Georgia Tech
  • 12/21: Tennessee Temple
  • 12/29-12/30: Dr. Pepper Classic
  • 1/11: UNC Greensboro
  • 1/14: The Citadel
  • 1/16: College of Charleston
  • 1/28: Western Carolina
  • 1/30: Appalachian State
  • 2/10: Samford
  • 2/13: Furman
  • 2/22: Davidson

Sound Off: 2009 graduates, it’s time to think ahead

By Lauren McFall

CHATTANOOGA (UTC)—Students graduating during the year 2009 are rethinking their career goals after college. Maybe grad school or moving back home isn’t such a bad idea. This year, 1.5 million students will graduate with a bachelor’s degree and will be competing for a job in a market that already has 1.8 million unemployed degree holders.

With the average salary down 2.2% compared to last year, The National Association of Colleges and Employers (NACE) reports that the typical senior who was once promised a salary of $49,624 will now receive a lower income of $48,515.

Not all majors are seeing a decrease in salary. Majors that require credentials such as Engineering, Accounting and Finance are seeing an increase as high as 2.3%

Graduates are doing all they can to either further their education, find an internship, or use networking to ensure they have a good start in this slow economy.

Natalie Roy, a UTC senior believes that networking will come into play more than just having good work experience, “I’m trying to talk to people, it seems like now it’s not what you know or how well you have done, it’s who you know and what they can do for you.”

Words of encouragement and good advice are worth their weight in gold for the soon to be graduates. Chris Gardner a self-made entrepreneur and philanthropist who inspired the autobiography and feature

Gardner gives hope for soon to be graduates.

Gardner gives hope for soon to be graduates.

film, “Pursuit of Happyness,” will speak at UC Berkeley on Friday, May 22.

“Hopefully, I can impress upon them that this is a time of opportunity, if they follow their passions and are uncompromising in their commitment to hard work and what truly matters”

Katie Gloster, a UTC senior, also gives insight, “I’ve heard from teachers that it’s good to get the work experience before grad school because the company you end up with can help you pay for grad school.”

UTC placement office offers students ways to communicate potential employers.

UTC placement office offers students ways to communicate potential employers.

The University of Tennessee at Chattanooga, like many other colleges, has a placement office that provides a free job posting service for the convenience of students, graduates and employers. Using this important outlet can help students get jobs in their surrounding area.

UTC students can look for local jobs online at, The Times Free Press, and For students looking for jobs in the state of Tennessee, websites like and are also helpful.


What do you think about the current job market? Leave your comments in the space available after this article. Tell us what’s going in your pursuit of work or furthering your studies.

Saving the environment and listening to good music, does it get any better?

CHATTANOOGA, Tenn.-Being more “environmentally friendly” is not just a cool thing to do, it can also pay off. Something as simple as turning off your lights, or doing volunteer work may mean that you have a free concert in your future.

On Saturday March 28, at 8:30 p.m., Chattanooga and many other cities around the world are urged to turn off their lights for one hour. Earth Hour, which has become a global sustainability movement, includes over 100 million people, in 35 different countries.

In 2007, Earth Hour started in Sydney Australia with 2.2 million homes turning off their lights for one whole hour. Now in 2009, people are using Earth Hour as an awareness plea to world leaders, to take action on climate change.

Australia’s city of Canberra before and during earth hour.

Australia’s city of Canberra before and during earth hour.

Locally, the Chattanooga-Hamilton County Health Department, “would like to call on individuals and businesses within Hamilton County to join together to make a statement within our own community.”

If you would like to donate more of your time to the cause, volunteering your time for the Earth Day Network can be both beneficial to you, and the environment.

On March 23, 2009, the Green Apple Festival and Earth Day Network released a line up for the free “Green Apple Thank You Concerts,” concerts for those who volunteered their time in designated cities around the country, focusing on climate change solutions.

The artist line-up consists of Galactic, Travis Tritt, Soulville and Friends, Cracker,  and The Blue Scholars, which are all performers of the no admission festival.

Country singer Travis Tritt is scheduled to perform in Austin, TX. On April 20, 2009.

Country singer Travis Tritt is scheduled to perform in Austin, TX. On April 20, 2009.

The closest designated city to the Chattanooga area, is Atlanta, GA. Projects in designated areas will consist of working in parks, beaches, schools and forests  and will focus on climate change solutions like tree planting, energy efficiency retrofits, water protection, urban gardens and forest restorations.

Galactic and Friends, a leading funk and jazz instrumental band from New Orleans, LA. will be playing with opener Victoria George at the Variety Playhouse.

The projects are suitable for all ages, including children and families. Earth Day Network sponsors these activities to encourage active lifestyles while connecting volunteers with green products and solutions.

Earth Day can be celebrated every year, by doing what you can to raise awareness and help clean up the environment. In the Chattanooga area, tree planting, recycling and education programs have been held in the past to help the cause.

Joining the Chattanooga Green Committee, Take the Mayors Environmental Pledge and the Take Root program are just a few ways to get involved and make a difference in the environment.

Rock Climber’s Found Dead on Suck Creek Mountain

By: Ashley King

CHATTANOOGA (AP/UTC)–A Chattanooga resident was found dead Wednesday at the foot of Suck Creek Mountain in Hamilton County after what appears to be an accidental fall. 

A relative found 23-year-old, Jesse David Brude, inside Prentice Cooper State Park. Brude had left for his climbing trip Monday.


 "Mountain comparable to Suck Creek Mountain located in Prentice Cooper State Park"

"Mountain comparable to Suck Creek Mountain located in Prentice Cooper State Park"

According to relatives he had plenty of experience and equipment. and he was apparently climbing alone.

“Something just went wrong,” said Dusty Stokes, Hamilton County Sheriff Sgt. 

AP Copyright 2009