Updates and news for the week of May 28-June 3, 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.

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Olivia the Olympian

U.S. Olympic weightlifter Olivia Reeves

U.S. Olympic weightlifter Olivia Reeves

UTC student Olivia Reeves has been selected as one of the five athletes representing USA Weightlifting during this summer’s Paris Olympic Games. The announcement took place Friday in Colorado Springs, Colorado. Click here for the USA Weightlifting announcement.

Reeves, a senior majoring in sociology who competes at 71 kg, is looking to become the first UTC currently-enrolled student to participate in the Olympic Games—and is believed to be the first student in the University’s 138-year history to be selected for an Olympic team.

She will travel to Paris on July 18 and spend nearly a month in France as the competitions take place. Reeves will compete at 7:30 p.m. Paris time (1:30 p.m. in Chattanooga) on Friday, Aug. 9.

A letter of thanks

Officer Ginger Yates (right)

Officer Ginger Yates (right)

Last week, Associate Vice Chancellor for Public Safety and Chief of Police Sean O’Brien received the following note reflecting the best of our UTC Police Department. The email sender granted permission for the note to appear in Campus Weekly.

Chief O’Brien,

I want to thank you for the amazing work your officers do each day. My husband is a medically retired police officer due to being hit by a vehicle almost five years ago. Because of this injury, he struggles to leave the house due to daily seizures from a head injury.

On May 21, 2024, I was on campus for my daughter’s high school graduation from TN Connections Academy. As we pulled into McKenzie Arena, my daughter saw the police car. Her first response was to say how much she missed my husband not being able to attend due to his injuries. She stated that she wanted an officer close to her to make her feel like he was there with us. My first contact with UTCPD was Officer (Ginger) Yates. I explained our story and she was very eager to help. I then spoke with Sgt. Craig Haney, who was also willing to make this day special for my daughter.

As my daughter walked to the stage to receive her diploma, Sgt. Haney walked with her. Having him by her side as she waited in line was a very special moment for our whole family. As she exited the stage, Deputy Chief Matthew Holzmacher was waiting for her. He spoke with her and made sure she was okay. The interactions with these three officers made this day for her (and all of us) even more special. She realized that day what “Law Enforcement Family” means. It helped fill a hole in her heart knowing that we all have her back.

I can tell you I cried way too much that day, as she is the baby of our family. I know I felt safe and loved by people that I had never met until that day. You have an amazing team that really cares about their community. Thank you for your service and the team you built.

Walker and Darlene Veal

From the UTC Podlab: Tennessee Valley Crossroads

Computer science student William Bumcum and business management student Maggie Leslie

Computer science student William Bumcum and business management student Maggie Leslie

“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 week’s episode features a conversation between computer science student William Bumcum and business management student Maggie Leslie about gun control.

  • “Tennessee Valley Crossroads” is inspired by StoryCorps’ One Small Step initiative, which brings together 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

For the second straight year, staff and faculty hit the road to spread the UTC name at numerous Hamilton County Schools eighth-grade promotion ceremonies. Two dozen UTC representatives participated in Middle School to Mocs Scholars events, presenting to more than 3,000 HCS students—including Stacy Lightfoot and Amy Hitchcock (pictured above) at the Chattanooga School for the Liberal Arts ceremony.

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Last Thursday night, Assistant Vice Chancellor for Alumni Affairs Jeff Cogburn (left), Equal Opportunity and Accessibility Director Rosite Delgado and University High Principal Arielle Hayes graduated from Leadership Chattanooga.

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Graduate School Interim Dean Ethan Carver presents the Outstanding Community Partner Award to Anesthesiology Consultants Exchange's Scott Monterde.

Graduate School Interim Dean Ethan Carver presents the Outstanding Community Partner Award to Anesthesiology Consultants Exchange’s Scott Monterde.

The UTC Graduate School recently recognized the Certified Registered Nurse Anesthetists at Anesthesiology Consultants Exchange, P.C., with its inaugural Outstanding Community Partner Award—given to an organization that has demonstrated an outstanding relationship with one or more UTC graduate programs.

Anesthesiology Consultants Exchange (ACE), nominated by the School of Nursing graduate faculty, provides outstanding clinical experiences at Erlanger Health System.  ACE is considered to be a leader in student nurse anesthetist training in the Southeast. UTC is proud to partner with them for the betterment of our students.

The graduate awards committee consisted of Dr. Barry Kamrath (chair), Dr. Carolyn Padalino, Dr. Chris Cunningham, Dr. Jessica Hackathorne and Dr. Navid Aghakhani.

Mark your calendar

The Office of Multicultural Affairs and the UTC Black Faculty and Staff Association are hosting UTC’s Juneteenth celebration from noon-2 p.m. on Friday, June 14, in the Lupton Hall first floor lobby. The event is open to faculty, staff, students, alumni and family.

Learn more about Juneteenth’s origins as we celebrate its culture and heritage. This is a family reunion-style event where we gather to learn, celebrate and engage with our campus community.

Food and T-shirts will be provided while supplies last. Attendees are asked to RSVP via MocSync by Wednesday, June 12.

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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 in June:

  • Freshman sessions: June 6, 7, 17, 18
  • Transfer sessions: June 4, 21, 27 (online)

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

  • Click here for the “Save the Date” flier.
  • Click here for the schedule of events for freshman and parent/guest orientation.

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. Thank you in advance for making our orientation program a success.

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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 5: Opioid Overdose Prevention and Narcan (University Center 350), noon-1 p.m.
  • Wednesday, June 12: Promoting Student Wellbeing: The Dimensions of Wellness (virtual), 2-3 p.m.
  • Wednesday, June 19: QPR: Question, Persuade, Refer (virtual), 11 a.m.-noon
  • Wednesday, June 19: Suicide Prevention Using C-SSRS (virtual), noon-1 p.m.
  • 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

Save the date! UTC is excited to participate in the United Way of Greater Chattanooga’s city-wide “Day of Caring” volunteer service initiative on Friday, September 20. Your serving hands are needed to represent, bring together and impact the residents and partners in Chattanooga.

Indoor or outdoor projects may include painting, moving debris or gardening. Interested students, faculty and staff will be able to indicate a preferred volunteer site, and transportation will be available. Additional details, including registration information, is forthcoming.

Email Daniel-Grzesik@utc.edu, the director of Leadership Development and Programs, if you have any questions about getting involved with this volunteer service initiative.

Looking back

UTC orientation leaders at the first summer session last Wednesday

UTC orientation leaders at the first summer session last Wednesday

Communications and Marketing staff writer Peyton Schultz didn’t live on campus as a UTC student and always wished she could go back and tell her 18-year-old self the information to make her transition into college a little easier. So, with the help of UTC’s experts in creating the best student experience, Schultz compiled a list of what UTC first-year students need to know—beginning with “make the most out of orientation.”

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Dylan Rivera

Dylan Rivera

For many children, the monsters under their beds are real, and Dylan Rivera, a 2020 graduate of UTC, is working to help keep those monsters in check. As director of policy planning and implementation for the city of Chattanooga, his work directly influences Chattanooga’s minority neighborhoods by helping people “move up from where they are in their socioeconomic status” and making impactful changes for their families.

WUTC Spotlight: Co.MObility Summit

Eric Ries (photo credit: Julie Bushell Associates)

Eric Ries (photo credit: Julie Bushell Associates)

WUTC-FM’s “Scenic Roots” recently featured a conversation with entrepreneur and author Eric Ries, who pioneered the Lean Startup movement.

Last week, Ries was one of the keynote speakers at the CO.MOBILITY summit.


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