Updates and news for the week of June 25-July 1, 2024

The UTC Campus Weekly newsletter is distributed every Tuesday morning. If you have news, events or announcements you would like shared with campus, please submit your information to peyton-l-schultz@utc.edu or chuck-wasserstrom@utc.edu in the Division of Communications and Marketing by 3 p.m. on Friday for placement in the following Tuesday’s newsletter.

UTC News  UTC Events Calendar  |  Campus Updates

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UTC Receives Eight Colleges of Distinction Designations

Colleges of Distinction, an organization that honors higher education institutions that excel in delivering exceptional student experiences and producing successful outcomes, has recognized UTC in eight different award categories for the institution’s commitment to helping undergraduate students learn, grow and succeed.

UTC has been designated a 2024-2025 College of Distinction and a Tennessee College of Distinction. The organization also recognized UTC for career development, as a public institution of distinction, and for its business, education, engineering and nursing programs.

Submit your events for Welcome Week 2024

Our goal for Welcome Week 2024 is to offer a calendar full of fun and engaging events that welcome our students to the start of a new semester, and we need your help.

If you are hosting an event or program during the first week of classes (Aug. 18-24), please submit your event to the official calendar found on the Welcome Week webpage. Click here to access the event submission form. The priority deadline to submit events for the Welcome Week calendar is Friday, July 26.

More information about submitting an event for the Welcome Week calendar can be found here. Contact Director of Student and Family Engagement Laura Petrus (laura-petrus@utc.edu) with questions.

Volunteers needed for Operation Move In

Operation Move In for incoming freshmen and transfers is scheduled for Thursday, Aug. 15, and Housing and Residence Life could use as many hands as possible to make this day go as smoothly as possible for our newest residents.

If you are interested in volunteering for OMI, please fill out the OMI volunteer signup form and share the link with others. Those who volunteer will receive a meal voucher for UTC Dining and a signature OMI T-shirt as a special thank you.

Want to learn about certificate opportunities?

UTC staff are invited to learn about opportunities to earn a certificate in Higher Education Leadership and Decision-Making, a Master of Public Administration degree, or both at the same time—with all certificate courses counting toward the MPA degree.

An information session about how either or both programs can help prepare you for career advancement will take place from 11 a.m.-noon on Thursday (June 27) in Hunter Hall Room 405.

Please RSVP to higher ed certificate coordinator Beth Crawford (Beth-Crawford@utc.edu) if you will attend. If you are interested but can’t attend the session, email Crawford or MPA Program Director Chris Horne (Christopher-Horne@utc.edu) to schedule a time to talk.

From the UTC Podlab: Tennessee Valley Crossroads

Communication major Clara Paulson, left, and secondary education major Ruby Morgan

Communication major Clara Paulson, left, and secondary education major Ruby Morgan

“Tennessee Valley Crossroads” is a University of Tennessee at Chattanooga student-produced podcast that brings classmates together to have candid, unscripted conversations, fostering empathy and breaking down barriers between students from different cultures and backgrounds. Under the direction of Will Davis, students came to the UTC PodLab and opened their lives with stories about their families, their politics and their hopes for the future.

This episode features a conversation between communication major Clara Paulson and secondary education student Ruby Morgan about the lost art of conversation.

  • “Tennessee Valley Crossroads” is inspired by StoryCorps’ One Small Step initiative, which brings together strangers to find the humanity in each other.
  • You can listen to “Tennessee Valley Crossroads” on WUTC 88.1 FM every Monday during Morning Edition and All Things Considered, and subscribe to the “Tennessee Valley Crossroads” podcast on Apple Podcasts or Spotify.

The outstanding people of UTC

Charlie Mix, left, and Nyssa Hunt

Charlie Mix, left, and Nyssa Hunt

Congratulations to UTC faculty and staff who received awards or submitted proposals for sponsored programs in May. The Office of Research and Sponsored Programs announced that faculty and staff attracted $878,853 in external grant and contract awards during the month and submitted proposals for the potential to generate over $7,866,666 in external funding, if awarded.

Among those receiving awards in May were Charlie Mix and Nyssa Hunt of the IGTLab, who received $200,685 from the City of Chattanooga for the project titled, “Take Root: Analyzing, Mapping, and Restoring Chattanooga’s Urban Forests.”

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From left: Dr. Mina Sartipi, Kimberly Thomas, Mateo Jimenez, Dr. Nancy Fell

From left: Dr. Mina Sartipi, Kimberly Thomas, Mateo Jimenez, Dr. Nancy Fell

Check out these Mocs making a difference:

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College of Engineering and Computer Science Graduate Recruitment Coordinator Mackenzie Clark has taken on the additional role as the college’s alumni affairs coordinator.

Philip Sparn recently joined the Graduate School as marketing strategist.

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Check out these Mocs in the news:

  • Dr. Anovia Slaughter’s appointment as the new University ombuds was featured in The Ombuds Blog.
  • Infection Control Today spoke with Dr. Henry Spratt, Dr. David Levine and Dr. Caitlin Crews-Stowe before the recent Association for Professionals in Infection Control and Epidemiology Annual Conference and Exposition.
  • Dr. Chris Cunningham was featured in The Palm Beach Post in a story titled “Gig economy: Moonlighting at record high despite risks to mental, physical, emotional, social health.”

Mark your calendar

The College of Engineering and Computer Science is hosting a virtual graduate program information session at 2 p.m. on Wednesday, July 10. Please RSVP through our Zoom link to learn more about our programs in Engineering, Engineering Management and Computer Science.

For any questions, reach out to Mackenzie-L-Clark@utc.edu.

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Campus Recreation is running a faculty and staff summer pickleball league July 16-Aug. 1 from noon-1 p.m. on Tuesdays and Thursdays on the ARC’s basketball courts. Click here to register on imleagues.com.

For more information, email Campus Recreation Coordinator of Intramural Sports Amy Slagle (amy-slagle@utc.edu).

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New Student and Family Programs will be hosting orientation sessions throughout the summer for all new students entering UTC in the fall, including the following dates:

  • Freshman sessions: July 15, 16, 25, 26
  • Transfer sessions: June 27 (online) … July 18, 23 (online) … Aug. 1

On average, the University sees over 6,000 new students and their guests throughout the summer program.

All in-person orientations will have an information desk located in the University Center’s first floor gallery. Please direct anyone with orientation-related questions to the information desk.

Please contact carrie-sherbesman@utc.edu if you have any questions.

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The Center for Wellbeing will be hosting a series of trainings for staff and faculty this summer. If interested, please sign up here. The Center’s staff is happy to schedule trainings for specific teams or departments at other times throughout the year. Reach out to megan-mcknight@utc.edu with questions or to request a training.

  • Wednesday (June 26): Promoting Student Wellbeing: The Dimensions of Wellness (University Center 350), 11 a.m.-noon
  • Thursday, July 11: Promoting Healthy Sleep Among Students (University Center 350), 1-2 p.m.
  • Wednesday, July 17: QPR: Question, Persuade, Refer (University Center 350), 10-11 a.m.
  • Wednesday, July 17: Suicide Prevention Using C-SSRS (University Center 350), 11 a.m.-noon
  • Thursday, July 18: Promoting Healthy Sleep Among Students (virtual), 10-11 a.m.
  • Monday, July 22: Opioid Overdose Prevention & Narcan (University Center 350), 1-2 p.m.
  • Thursday, July 25: Mental Health First Aid (University Center 350), 8 a.m.-4 p.m.
  • Wednesday, July 31: Recovery Allyship: How to Support Students Who Are Struggling or Have Struggled with Substance Use (virtual), noon-2 p.m.
  • Monday, August 5: QPR: Question, Persuade, Refer (virtual), 2-3 p.m.
  • Monday, August 5: Suicide Prevention Using C-SSRS (virtual), 3-4 p.m.

Notice of Final Defense: Upcoming Research Presentations

The UTC Graduate School announced that the following students will be presenting their final works of research as advanced degree candidates. Everyone is invited to attend.

Campus Updates

The University of Tennessee Press seeks volunteers for its editorial board.

This engaging opportunity allows faculty members to influence scholarship and help determine the direction of the press’s publishing program. Board members have two responsibilities: first, to assist the press director and staff in the acquisition and evaluation of manuscripts; and second, to ensure that all publications of the press meet the standards of scholarship, thought, judgment and taste appropriate to a major university and research institution. The board meets formally a minimum of three times per year.

Board membership is open to University of Tennessee scholars or book authors system-wide. Appointments are for three-year terms, renewable once to a maximum term of continuous service of six years.

Interested volunteers should email UT Press Director Katie Hannah (khannah1@utk.edu).

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Photo credit: UT System

Photo credit: UT System

Join the UT System Institutional Effectiveness (IE) team for the 2024 IE Summit from July 9–11, where data practitioners across all UT campuses and institutes will explore the future of data-driven excellence. At a one-hour virtual session each day, participants will engage with colleagues through insightful sessions on AI technologies, data stewardship and the evaluation of our data dashboards.

Don’t miss this opportunity to shape the next chapter in supporting the UT mission through data. Register now to be part of the conversation.

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The 2025 UT Grand Challenges Summit will take place Feb. 13-14, 2025, at the Embassy Suites in Murfreesboro.

Join the UT System for an impactful summit aimed at addressing Tennessee’s most pressing issues. By convening a diverse group of experts and stakeholders to think in terms of wholes rather than fragmented parts, the summit’s goal is to foster innovative solutions and strategic partnerships to drive meaningful change across the state. This is a unique opportunity to delve into interconnected challenges and collaboratively explore ways to advance our communities.

  • The Grand Challenge areas are overcoming addiction, advancing K-12 education, and strengthening Tennessee’s rural communities.

The UT System also is seeking engaging presentations from University-affiliated faculty and staff for this summit. Share your insights and lead discussions by providing an overview of your work. Click here to apply to be a presenter; the submission deadline is Sept. 1.

Looking back

Graciela Williams works at her internship at the Chattanooga Police Department.

Graciela Williams works at her internship at the Chattanooga Police Department.

If you’re a criminal justice student at UTC, internships aren’t just resume fillers—they are real-world adventures in the field of your choice.

“They’re not sharpening pencils,” said Dr. Rick Dierenfeldt, a UC Foundation associate professor of criminal justice and the interim department head. “They’re getting called out at 11 o’clock at night to go to homicide scenes.”

WUTC Spotlight: Scenic Roots

Abhi Sastri (photo credit: Chattanooga Area Chamber of Commerce)

Abhi Sastri (photo credit: Chattanooga Area Chamber of Commerce)

By the year 2040, data centers are expected to consume 20% of the world’s power.

Abhi Sastri, a recent guest on WUTC-FM’s “Scenic Roots,” is the founder and CEO of FLUIX—a startup that aims to rely on AI to save energy use and other costs for data centers. FLUIX is one of five startups chosen for the first Sustainable Mobility Accelerator program by The Company Lab and gener8tor.


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