Updates and news for the week of March 26-April 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 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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Coming Soon: I Love UTC Week!

Get ready to show your Mocs pride during I Love UTC Week 2024!

I Love UTC Week, a spring tradition taking place April 1-7, is a great opportunity to show off your blue and gold Mocs spirit. Activities will include UTC Family Feud, an Employee Giving Campaign, a kickball tournament, swag swaps and more.

Click here for the events calendar and details.

University Center Fall Room Reservations

Fall 2024 room reservations for the University Center will open at 9 a.m. on Monday, April 1. To reserve space, you can access the EMS reservations page here. Because some rooms will be going offline as part of the renovation, we ask that everyone be responsible and respectful when reserving space, including only reserving for the time needed and canceling reservations as soon as they are no longer needed.

If you need any assistance with the reservation process, please feel free to contact the University Center Office. We would be happy to help.

Fall 2024 reservations for Campus Exterior Space and Lupton 120 are currently available at the link above. We encourage everyone to reserve space early.

UTC Celebrates Women’s History Month

Image credit: Wahyu Arfiansyah

Image credit: Wahyu Arfiansyah

March is Women’s History Month, and the Center for Women and Gender Equity is honoring and celebrating women’s contributions to history throughout the month. Check the Women’s History Month events calendar for a complete listing of activities.

This week’s events include:

  • Today (March 26): Neurodivergence and Gender, University Center Chickamauga Room, noon
  • Today (March 26): Love, Period, Lupton Hall Room 118, 5 p.m.
  • Today (March 26): Exploring the Money and Power Behind the Civil Rights Movement, Mapp Building, 6 p.m. Event sponsors: Department of History; Department of English; Africana Studies Program; Women, Gender and Sexuality Studies Program; Commission on the Status of Women; Division of Access and Engagement; Department of Political Science and Public Service
  • Wednesday (March 27): “I’m Not Like Others Girls, I’m Worse” Lunch Chat, Lupton Hall Room 118, 11:30 a.m.
  • Thursday (March 28): Love on a Leash, Lupton Hall Room 118, noon

Call for Commencement Marshals

We are looking for a lot of faculty and staff to serve as marshals at each of our three May 2024 commencement ceremonies. This is the first time since 2019 that we will be doing student processions and have a full arena.

We will need approximately 15 faculty to serve as marshals on Friday, May 3, and approximately 25 faculty members to serve as marshals at each ceremony on Saturday, May 4.

  • Marshals duties include lining up students before the ceremony, leading students into the arena at the start of the ceremony and directing students from their chairs to the stage and back during the ceremony.
  • Marshals will need to arrive one hour before the ceremony starts, so please schedule accordingly.

If you would like to volunteer to be a marshal, please register here and indicate which commencement ceremony(ies) you are available to marshal. Questions or concerns related to commencement marshals should be directed to Charlene-Simmons@utc.edu.

Send in your Information for the UTC Parent and Family Association Newsletter

UTC Parent and Family Association newsletter logo

It is again time to recruit campus partners to send in information for the UTC Parent and Family Association newsletter, a monthly roundup distributed to more than 5,400 parents/family members.

To share information with the families of UTC students—upcoming events, important deadlines, helpful suggestions and departmental news—email hannah-turcotte@utc.edu by 5 p.m. on Wednesday (March 27). The April newsletter will be emailed to members Wednesday, April 3.

Last chance to nominate for the UTAA Outstanding Teacher and Public Service Awards

2023 UTAA winners (from left): Dr. Karen Babine, Dr. Spencer Usrey and Dr. Jamie Harvey

2023 UTAA winners (from left): Dr. Karen Babine, Dr. Spencer Usrey and Dr. Jamie Harvey

The University of Tennessee Alumni Association (UTAA) seeks nominations for two Outstanding Teacher Awards and one Public Service Award for UTC. The outstanding teachers must be full-time faculty and exhibit exceptional engagement in the classroom. The public service award is available for faculty or staff and aims to recognize someone whose service to our community goes above and beyond the standard to advance UTC.

Each winner will receive a $1,000 award and recognition at the UTAA Alumni Board of Governors’ reception at the end of May 2024. Applications are due by Sunday (March 31).

Nominate Students for the Blue and Gold Awards

Many students have worked hard this academic year, and the annual Blue and Gold Awards celebrate those achievements. This year’s Blue and Gold Award ceremony will take place at 6 p.m. on Wednesday, April 3, in the University Center Tennessee Room.

The Student Government Association (SGA) invites nominations of students or student organizations deserving of an award. In addition, we encourage departmental, office, programmatic or student organization awards to be presented at the ceremony:

If you have any questions, please contact SGA Student Affairs and Academic Support Chairperson Jordan Fall at hhl476@mocs.utc.edu.

Circle April 10 on your calendar

More than 700 presenters participated in the 2023 UTC Spring Research and Arts Conference.

More than 700 presenters participated in the 2023 UTC Spring Research and Arts Conference.

The largest academic conference held on the UTC campus is only a couple of weeks away. The 2024 UTC Spring Research and Arts Conference will be held on Wednesday, April 10, in the University Center. Sponsored by the Office for Undergraduate Research and Creative Endeavor (URaCE), the event allows UTC students, faculty and staff to share their research or showcase their creative work with their peers.

This year’s highlights include:

  • Six students participating in the Office for URaCE Undergraduate Research Work-Study program will present mentored-research projects as the culminating experience for the yearlong program.
  • Dr. Raga Ahmed and six Hamilton County teachers will present research related to the Research Experience for Teachers (RET) project “Engineering and Data Analytics in Smart Cities,” an RET site that provides authentic experiences in smart city development for high school STEM educators.
  • Dr. Hassan Afzal’s political science students will give presentations on a variety of topics related to his spring course titled “American Foreign Policy.”

The outstanding people of UTC

Members of the CUIP team include: top row from left Dr. Mina Sartipi, Director of Operations/Chief Engineer Austin Harris, graduate students Mehdi Khaleghian and Yasir Hassan; bottom row from left, graduate students Sima Ashayar, Tuan Nguyen and Giang Do and Junior High Performance Computing Tech Patrick Bigelow.

Members of the CUIP team include: top row from left Dr. Mina Sartipi, Director of Operations/Chief Engineer Austin Harris, graduate students Mehdi Khaleghian and Yasir Hassan; bottom row from left, graduate students Sima Ashayar, Tuan Nguyen and Giang Do and Junior High Performance Computing Tech Patrick Bigelow.

Pedestrian safety in Chattanooga is set to advance significantly thanks to a $2 million Strengthening Mobility and Revolutionizing Transportation (SMART) grant from the U.S. Department of Transportation. Earlier this month, officials from the City of Chattanooga and UTC were notified that they are among the 34 recipients of a SMART “Planning and Prototyping Grant” from a pool of 321 applicants nationwide.

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Dr. Joey Shaw (center) and his students at the Association of Southeastern Biologists conference (photo courtesy of Dr. Gretchen Potts).

Dr. Joey Shaw (center) and his students at the Association of Southeastern Biologists conference (photo courtesy of Dr. Gretchen Potts).

UC Foundation Professor Joey Shaw was honored by the Southern Appalachian Botanical Society with the Elizabeth Ann Bartholomew Award at the Association of Southeastern Biologists conference last week in Chattanooga. The career award, which was presented to Shaw in front of a number of his students, is given “to individuals who have also distinguished themselves in professional and public service that advances our knowledge and appreciation of the world of plants and their scientific, cultural, and aesthetic values, and/or exceptional service to the society.”

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The UTC Chem-E Car team placed second at the 2024 AIChE Southern Student Regional Conference, held March 15-16 at Auburn University. The team advanced to this fall’s national competition.

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Dr. Jose Barbosa

Dr. Jose Barbosa

The College of Arts and Sciences and the CAS Access and Inclusive Excellence Committee will be holding the annual CAS Spotlight on Faculty Excellence at 6 p.m. on Thursday, April 4, in the University Center Auditorium.

This year’s honoree is Dr. Jose M. Barbosa, professor in the Department of Biology, Geology and Environmental Science, who will give a lecture about his career mentoring students through his research projects. His presentation, titled “Cultivating Tomorrow’s Scientists,” will be followed by a Q&A and a reception. To RSVP for the event, which includes dinner, please click here.

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Check out these Mocs making a difference:

  • Campus Rec Assistant Director for Facilities and Operations Corbin Hedges and Campus Rec Membership Coordinator Colleen DeMarco will present “A Test Trial: Selling Memberships to the General Public” at the National Intramural-Recreational Sports Association (NIRSA) conference in April.
  • Director of Campus Recreation Cindy Strine received two NIRSA Annual Service Awards—for exceptional dedication and effort demonstrated during the revision of the CAS Collegiate Recreation Contextual Statement and Functional Program Standards, and another for significant contributions made during the creation of the CAS Esports Program Standards. The awards will be presented at the NIRSA annual conference in April.
  • WUTC-FM’s Ray Bassett was featured in the Times Free Press as part of a profile of local podcasters. Bassett is host of Scenic Roots, a radio show also available as a podcast.

Mark your calendar

To celebrate Women’s History Month, we are honored to welcome Dr. Tanisha C. Ford, an acclaimed writer and professor of history at The Graduate Center, CUNY, to explore the role of philanthropy in advancing social justice with a focus on its impact during the Civil Rights Movement. The event will begin at 6 p.m. today (March 26) in the Mapp Building.

Ford will discuss her latest book, “Our Secret Society: Mollie Moon and the Glamour, Money, and Power Behind the Civil Rights Movement,” shedding light on the often overlooked fundraising efforts supporting civil rights.

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The Department of Art, in partnership with the Institute of Contemporary Art, will host the 2024 Bachelor of Fine Arts Senior Thesis Exhibition from March 26-April 20. Show 1 will take place March 26-April 6 and Show 2 will take place April 10-April 20.

  • Show 1 artist talks and opening reception: Thursday (March 28), 5-6:30 p.m., Benwood Auditorium, Zoom option; reception follows until 8 p.m. in the ICA Galleries and Fine Arts Center lobby. Show 1 artists: Megan Bailey, Gabriella Gloster, Kate Greenwell, Ryn Hambrick, Jaden Hestla, Hailee Kennedy, Magan Marks, Brooke Morgan, Maddie Nunnery, Conner Seavey, Ally Spruill, Porter Tomaszewski, Dylan Wood, Mohammad Omar Yasin.
  • Show 2 artist talks and opening reception: Friday, April 12, 5-6:30 p.m., Benwood Auditorium, Zoom option; reception follows until 8 p.m. in the ICA Galleries and Fine Arts Center lobby. Show 2 artists: Yamman Dean Azzouz, Maddie Benefield, Bryce Cullum, Lily Dixon, Joseph Goodman, Tred Hill, Eli Ladner, Manny Martin, Zoe Rye, Emma Soefker, Andy Tate, Angie Vasquez, Nico Wilcher, Emma Womble.

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The Department of Political Science and Public Service invites the UTC community to our spring Sweet Research series, where we share our research along with dessert. All events are on Wednesdays from noon-12:50 p.m. in 540 McCallie Building Room 462D (PSPS suite).

  • Wednesday (March 27—Student Edition): Sophia Chrisco, “How Misinformation Regarding Covid-19 Caused a Decline in Childhood Vaccination Rates in the United States,” and Kristina Thompson, “Asian American Women: Political Prowess and Effective Participation”
  • Wednesday, April 3: Dr. Sarah Heise, “The Left-Right Spectrum: Another Look at Ideology and Partisan Sorting in the United States”
  • Wednesday, April 10: Dr. Christopher Horne, “Christian Public Administrators’ Integration of Faith and Work”

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On Wednesday (March 27), the Department of History and the College of Arts and Sciences are sponsoring a conversation with Sari Bashi. The event will take place at 3 p.m. in the University Center Signal Mountain Room.

Bashi, who will participate via Zoom, is the program director at Human Rights Watch—leading the organization’s research, supervising a staff of 270 people in 50 countries, and working on 18 regional and thematic human rights areas. Prior to joining Human Rights Watch, she co-founded and ran Gisha, the leading Israeli human rights group promoting the right to freedom of movement for Palestinians in Gaza. She has taught international humanitarian law at Yale Law School and Tel Aviv University and supervised research at Democracy for the Arab World Now.

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UTC’s bi-annual Bloodanooga Blood Drive, in collaboration with Blood Assurance, is taking place on Monday and Tuesday (April 1-2) from 10 a.m.-6 p.m. in the University Center Tennessee Room. A single blood donation will save three lives in our community.

Blood donors will receive free food and a special event Super Mario-themed T-shirt. As an extra incentive, all donors will be entered into a drawing to win a Nintendo Switch. Thank you for your continued support, and we look forward to another successful event.

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On Monday (April 1), the Department of History, the Department of Political Science and Public Service and the College of Arts and Sciences will partner to sponsor “The History of Israel/Palestine and the Geopolitics of the Middle East.”

Associate Professor of History Annie Tracy Samuel and UC Foundation Associate Professor of Political Science and Public Administration Saeid Golkar, both with expertise in Middle East history and politics, will lead the noon discussion in the University Center Signal Mountain Room.

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Being empathetic, collaborative, trustworthy, a good listener and a coach are all words generally associated with leadership, but how does a leader do it? Why is it even important?

The Tasty Tidbit Leadership Lunch Series continues from noon-1 p.m. on Tuesday, April 2, with a session titled “Cultivating Connection With Others” led by Carisa Powell, a licensed counselor who works at Chattanooga State Community College. Participants will walk away with knowledge of empathy, practical strategies to make people feel valued, techniques to effectively navigate emotions, and informative practices of effective listeners and relationship builders. Human leadership is transformative.

Our last lunchtime session of the semester will take place in the West Campus Multipurpose Room and is open to all UTC students, faculty and staff.

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Dr. Doris L. Bergen, the Chancellor Rose and Ray Wolfe Professor of Holocaust Studies at the University of Toronto, is the featured speaker at the 2024 UTC Holocaust Lecture, taking place at 5 p.m. on Tuesday, April 2, in Derthick Hall Room 201. Bergen’s talk is titled “A Priest in a Nazi Collar”: German Military Chaplains and the Holocaust.

Bergen’s research focuses on issues of religion, gender and ethnicity in the Holocaust and World War II and comparatively in other cases of extreme violence. Her visit is sponsored by the Department of History with support from the College of Arts and Sciences and the Chair of Excellence in Judaic Studies.

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Join Dr. Hemant Jain, the W. Max Finley Chair and professor of data analytics in the Gary W. Rollins College of Business, on Thursday, April 4, to learn more about the effects of Artificial Intelligence during the W. Max Finley Chair Symposium on the Social and Business Impact of AI.

This half-day event is free and features some of the leading researchers in AI as well as some of the Chattanooga region’s business leaders. The learn more and register link will take you to a detailed landing page with more information about presenters and panelists.

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Alpha Delta Pi sorority is hosting a Pi-K (5k) race on Saturday, April 6. This professionally timed race event supports the Ronald McDonald House Charities of Greater Chattanooga. All UTC students and members of the Chattanooga community are welcome to participate. Click here to register for the race.

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An absurdist tale of survival and democratic decision-making is coming to the Fine Arts Center’s Dorothy Hackett Ward Theatre stage. The UTC Theatre Co. continues its 2023-2024 season with its production of Slawomir Mrozek’s “Out at Sea.” Performances will take place at 7:30 p.m. on April 9-13, with a 2 p.m. matinee performance on Saturday, April 13.

Tickets can be purchased online by clicking here and through the UTC Box Office—in person or by phone (423-425-4369). Tickets are $20 for general admission and $15 for students (with proof of student ID) and seniors.

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Sponsored by the George C. Connor Professorship of American Literature and the UTC Department of English, the Take Five 2024 lineup explores what it means to be educated in the modern world.

Take Five sessions occur Tuesday nights at 6 p.m. in the University Center Chattanooga Room. Each session will offer a light dinner, and no RSVP is necessary. Upcoming spring dates:

  • Tuesday, April 9:  Dr. Bryan Hampton presents Julie Schumacher’s “Dear Committee Members”

All books are available through online retailers and at the UTC Bookstore (423-425-4107). Contact Aaron-Shaheen@utc.edu with questions.

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Pulitzer-Prize-winning author and sociologist Matthew Desmond

Pulitzer-Prize-winning author and sociologist Matthew Desmond

On Thursday, April 11, the College of Arts and Sciences will be co-hosting Pulitzer-Prize-winning author and sociologist Matthew Desmond in collaboration with the Community Foundation of Greater Chattanooga. Desmond’s latest book, “Poverty, By America,” reached #1 on the New York Times best sellers list shortly after its release; his book “Evicted” won a Pulitzer Prize.

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The 2024 Technology Symposium, hosted by the UTC College of Engineering and Computer Science, will be held on Monday, April 15, in the University Center Tennessee Room.

CECS is looking for volunteers to donate an hour of time to help judge projects at this year’s event. All professions and backgrounds are needed. Please click here to register as a volunteer judge.

The Technology Symposium showcases innovative research projects conducted across multiple disciplines, including engineering, engineering technology management and computer science. Students at all education levels, educators, business and industry representatives, entrepreneurs and the general public are welcome. There is no cost to attend. Click here to learn more about this year’s event.

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On Wednesday, April 17, the Mosaic Program will host the Autistic Voices Panel, a student-led panel discussing autism spectrum disorder strengths and challenges faced in academia and career. The discussion will take place from 11 a.m.-1 p.m. in the University Center Tennessee Room.

April is Autism Acceptance Month, and the event’s focus is to promote autism acceptance through lived experiences. The demographic of attendees should be leadership, faculty and staff who would like a better understanding of the autistic community; how to work with autistic individuals; and gaining an understanding of the Mosaic Program and the support we offer students and the UTC community. There will be a Q&A session and networking opportunities to ask transparent and difficult questions.

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The Clarence E. Harris Chair of Excellence in Entrepreneurship is hosting AI Conversations: An Innovation Exchange between Campus and Community, from 11 a.m.-1 p.m. on Wednesday, April 17, at the Center for Innovation and Entrepreneurship in the Mapp Building. Lunch is included; click here to register.

AI Conversations is part of a new series hosted by the Center for Innovation & Entrepreneurship. Designed to be an inspiring and collaborative forum for exchanging knowledge, ideas and innovations, we aim to foster collaboration, networking and knowledge exchange between academia and industry professionals.

By bringing together academia, industry leaders, government representatives and research enthusiasts, this event will serve as a platform for showcasing the groundbreaking discoveries and innovations emerging from UTC and learning more about the interests and needs of Chattanooga’s regional industry. For more information, contact jennifer-skjellum@utc.edu.

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UTC Professor of Trumpet Erika L. Schafer and guest artist Brian Reichenbach will headline a trumpet duet recital on Monday, April 22, beginning at 7:30 p.m. in the Cadek Recital Hall. The free performance also features faculty members Emma Anderson (piano) and Ethan McDaniel (congas).

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Registration for the Walker Center for Teaching and Learning’s 2024 Instructional Excellence Conference is now open. The event, which will be held from 9 a.m.-1 p.m. on Tuesday, May 7, is free for all UTC faculty. Click here to register.

The keynote speaker is Dr. James Lang, professor of practice at the Kaneb Center for Teaching Excellence at the University of Notre Dame and an emeritus professor of English at Assumption University in Worcester, Massachusetts. A sought-after speaker and author of six books, he has given talks and workshops on teaching for faculty at more than 300 colleges, universities and schools in the U.S. and abroad. His talks focus on topics such as the science of learning, distraction in the classroom and academic integrity.

Campus Updates

The UTC Library has used past survey feedback to increase hours, improve study room availability and purchase new materials. Now’s your chance to help make the library even better by clicking here and sharing your suggestions and feedback.

Bonus: you’ll be entered to win one of two $50 Starbucks cards when you complete the survey before Monday, April 22.

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The Office of Financial Aid and Scholarships would like to hear from you. Help us review student expenses for the upcoming aid year by taking a couple of minutes to fill out the Cost of Attendance Survey.

The information we collect will be used to inform current and prospective students about the cost of attending UTC. Additionally, survey results will assist administrators in implementing policies/procedures that help keep the University affordable. Participation is voluntary and confidential. We appreciate your willingness to help our office review expenses.

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Campus Recreation is hiring lifeguards for this summer, and interested college and high school students can apply now. Certification scholarships are available for UTC students willing to work full-time during the summer. Email Chelsey-Voigt@utc.edu or call 423-425-4222 for information about certification training and employment.

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Injured in intramurals? Tweaked something in the gym? Back and neck soreness from hours of studying? Just need guidance getting back to your favorite activities? Check out UTC’s free physical therapy clinic.

The Pro Bono Physical Therapy clinic, located in the Mapp Building, is staffed by UTC Doctor of Physical Therapy students and professors and is 100% free. Clinic hours are 8 a.m.-noon on Tuesdays and 1-5 p.m. on Thursdays. Call University Health Services at 423-425-2266 or email ptclinic@utc.edu for more information.

Looking ahead

Margaret Manolache (photo courtesy of Dale Rutemeyer/GoMocs.com)

Margaret Manolache (photo courtesy of Dale Rutemeyer/GoMocs.com)

This week’s Mocs home athletics calendar:

  • Friday (March 29): Softball vs. ETSU, Frost Stadium, 1 p.m. doubleheader
  • Saturday (March 30): Softball vs. ETSU, Frost Stadium, 1 p.m.

Looking back

Last Tuesday, members of the UTC family spent the day at ChattState as part of the Power C Tour—an effort to connect prospective students with UTC and show them what the University has to offer.

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Here are some other recent UTC stories featured in the Newsroom:

WUTC Spotlight: Scenic Roots

Jose Otero (photo credit: Amigos Unidos)

Jose Otero (photo credit: Amigos Unidos)

WUTC-FM’s Scenic Roots featured a conversation with Jose Otero about “Amigos Unidos,” a recently-launched Spanish language podcast.

You can check out the “Amigos Unidos” podcast at amigosunidoschatt.org.

Be Well Tip: Grounding

Did you know that grounding, also known as earthing, offers a plethora of health benefits? Foremost, it connects the human body to the earth’s natural electrical charge, which helps neutralize the body’s electrical charge, thereby reducing inflammation.

This natural process has been linked to improving immune function and facilitating faster healing. Grounding has also been shown to enhance sleep quality by regulating circadian rhythm and promoting relaxation. It can alleviate stress and anxiety by promoting a sense of calm and well-being.

Examples of grounding: Walking barefoot on natural surfaces like grass, sand or soil; sitting by a river; and hiking in the woods.

Join the Center for Wellbeing on Thursday, April 11, for a hike at Stringer’s Ridge.


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