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Chancellor’s Update

September is here.  September has some noteworthy events and traditions.  Founder’s Week, which celebrates our University’s 136th anniversary, takes place the week of September 12.  On September 15, 1886, Chattanooga University opened its doors for the first time with an enrollment of 118 students.  The Founder’s Week calendar includes Mocs Games, the Service Awards Luncheon and Founder’s Day festivities—culminating with the annual State of the University address on September 16 at Chamberlain Pavilion.

This year, Founder’s Week coincides with Homecoming Week, and a host of activities will bring students, alums, faculty, staff and the community together to showcase our UTC spirit!  Stay tuned for announcements about Homecoming Week events.

This Tuesday, we recognized the Chancellor’s Blue Ribbon Award recipients for the first half of 2022—Jason Harville (Student Success Programs), John Johnson (Parking Services), Nora Ketron (UTC Library), Bill Floyd (Challenger STEM Learning Center), Leslie Ellis (Senior Custodian) and Tish Hubbard (Student Outreach and Support)—with a luncheon in the University Center.  These individuals have gone above and beyond in supporting the UTC campus and deserve special recognition.  The work they do defines UTC.

Congratulations to our 57 UTC student-athletes who landed on the Spring 2022 Academic All-Southern Conference team.  What a tremendous accomplishment!

Many of our student-athletes are either getting ready to begin their seasons or have just started.  I hope the entire campus will come out to support and cheer them on and enjoy the camaraderie that is a special part of UTC home games.

  • The Mocs football team, nationally ranked at 12th in the season’s initial Stats Perform FCS Top 25 poll, kicks off the season Saturday night (September 3) vs. Wofford at Finley Stadium.
  • The soccer team plays host to Tennessee Tech tonight (September 1) at the UTC Sports Complex.
  • The cross country season begins tomorrow morning (September 2) in Knoxville at the Tennessee Tri-Star Invitational.
  • The home opener for the indoor volleyball team takes place September 9 in Maclellan Gym, with UTC hosting Duquesne in the Chattanooga Classic.
  • Both golf teams head south to begin fall play September 12-13. The men’s team plays at the Streamsong Invitational in Bowling Green, Florida, and the women’s team travels to New Orleans for the Green Wave Fall Classic.
  • Both tennis teams start their seasons September 16. The women will participate in the Austin Peay Fall Invite, while the men will play in the Samford Invitational in Birmingham.

The national search for a new vice chancellor for finance and administration continues this fall.  Information about the process can be found here, including search committee members and the timeline.  Initial virtual interviews are scheduled for September 22-23.

The Division of Advancement, formerly known as Development and Alumni Affairs, has a new name that aligns with other UT System campuses and is much better recognized nationally.  To introduce its new name and team members, Advancement is holding an open house from 3-6 p.m. this afternoon (September 1) at Advancement House, 605 Oak St.  The event is for students, faculty, staff, alumni and friends of UTC.  I hope you can drop by to say Hi!

You will learn more in the coming weeks as we advance with our plans for the reaffirmation of our accreditation.  We have an on-site SACSCOC peer review scheduled for the spring of 2023.  The critical importance of regional accreditation in higher education can be summed up by the fact that it gives students access to federally funded financial aid and ensures that their courses and degrees will be accepted by other organizations and institutions across the nation.  Thank you to Theresa Liedtka and Cindy Williamson for all they are doing in leading our University’s efforts.

September is National Suicide Prevention Month, and I want to remind the campus community about the resources available for students experiencing life changes and severe challenges.  UTC CARES is a 24/7 crisis response service for students experiencing a mental health emergency or having suicidal thoughts.  This hotline number—423-425-CARE (2273)—provides students an opportunity to speak with a licensed professional who can offer emotional support.  It is OK to ask for help.

Finally, please remember that UTC is closed this coming Monday, September 5.  Have a great three-day weekend and stay healthy!



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