Next week is Homecoming Week! This year’s theme—Viva Moc Vegas—will showcase school spirit with a Las Vegas flair. Students, check out the Homecoming 2021 web page for information and to register for events. Homecoming-related events for UTC alumni can be found by checking out the Alumni Affairs web page. A big round of applause to the Office of Student and Family Engagement, Alumni Affairs and the Homecoming Student Steering Committee for putting these activities together!
Next Friday (October 29) we will hold a groundbreaking ceremony for the UTC Divine Nine Heritage Park on Vine Street and Terrell Owens Way. Fifty years ago, five historically African-American fraternities and sororities came to UTC, drawn by the promise of promoting civil rights and diversifying this campus. These organizations are part of the National Pan-Hellenic Council, the national governing body for the nine fraternities and sororities referred to as the “Divine Nine.” The creation of UTC Divine Nine Heritage Park will proclaim that NPHC Greek organizations are forever part of this campus’ rich history.
Homecoming Week events are capped off by our football game against Furman University in a critical Southern Conference showdown at 1:30 p.m. on October 30 at Finley Stadium. Our Mocs are playing inspired football and recorded a terrific 21-16 victory this past weekend over 10th-ranked ETSU. Come cheer on our Mocs!
Graduate student and Mocs football offensive lineman McClendon Curtis has been appointed to the NCAA Division I Football Oversight Committee Student-Athlete Connection Group. McClendon is one of 12 individuals chosen nationwide, spanning all three NCAA divisions, as ambassadors for football student-athletes. This is a tremendous honor!
Congratulations to the faculty and staff of the Master of Public Health (MPH) Program, which recently received national accreditation from the Council on Education for Public Health. The five-year accreditation is essential to public health programs because it ensures they meet quality criteria and standards.
Cheers to two long-time members of the UTC family, as the Honors College will formally name its library the Debbie and Michael Bell Library to celebrate the couple’s contributions to this campus. Debbie spent 44 years working for the University—the last 23 in the honors program—before retiring in June 2020, while Michael was a member of the UTC Library staff for 41 years before retiring in April.
UTC is proud to support and promote the vital work being done by Sara Peters and the Center for Women and Gender Equity. The Safe Zone Aspiring Ally program fosters a welcoming atmosphere for LGBTQQIA students by providing knowledge, resources and advocacy to the campus community. I have completed this training myself and strongly recommend it to those of you interested in this opportunity for growth.
Community partnerships are essential to University success, and one of those partners, Hayden Data Systems’ Safe Power Networks, was selected for the CHATech TechX Early Innovator Award. Hayden Data collaborated with a team from the UTC Department of Electrical Engineering: Associate Professor Donald Reising, UC Foundation Associate Professor Daniel Loveless, Professor Abdelrahman Karrar and graduate research assistant Mohamed Alfatih Taha. Congratulations to all!
Students, the deadline to apply for the UT Promise Scholarship is November 1. Current and new students (including transfer students) are eligible for this last-dollar scholarship to cover tuition and mandatory fees beginning in fall 2022.
This semester is flying by, and Thanksgiving, final exams and commencement will be here before we know it. I want to encourage everyone to take the time to participate in some of the many activities going on around campus. There are talks, seminars, performances, athletic events and community engagement opportunities going on every day. Please take time to meet new people and engage with the campus and community.