We are three weeks into Fall Semester 2018, and the campus is a hub of activity. Next week we will step up the pace with a full calendar of events. Founder’s Week begins Monday, September 10th, and runs through Friday, September 14th, with a variety of events for everyone on campus.
On Monday, from 11 a.m. – 1 p.m., join us on Chamberlain Field for Mocs Games 2018, our annual faculty and staff appreciation event. It will include games, food and giveaways. The event also gathers non-perishable food items for Scrappy’s Cupboard, a valuable and important emergency food assistance program available to all UTC students.
On Tuesday, we will present our annual Service Awards, which recognize faculty and staff who have dedicated themselves to UTC for anywhere from five to 40 years. Three of our staff members are celebrating four decades at UTC—Mike Royster, Assistant Athletics Director for Equipment and Facilities; Sue Garrett, Surplus Specialist in Procurement and Contract Services; and Ted Miller, UC Foundation Professor in Learning and Leadership. All of our Service Award winners deserve our thanks and our congratulations.
On Wednesday, we will thank the many scholarship donors at our annual Scholarship Luncheon. Students will have an opportunity to meet and thank the people who are helping them get an education. This is an inspiring event where we see the impact of philanthropy first hand. Thank you to all our donors.
On Thursday, we will have a campus celebration to recognize a $40 million gift, the largest in our history. Mr. Gary Rollins, a UC alumnus, and his wife, Kathleen Rollins, made the unprecedented donation and, as a result, the UT Board of Trustees has approved the naming of our College of Business as the Gary W. Rollins College of Business. The Rollins will be on campus that day for a campus celebration from 1:30 p.m. – 3:30 p.m. on the Fletcher Hall lawn.
On Friday, September 13, I will present the annual State of the University address. The address takes place at our beautiful new West Campus Residence Hall. After the State of the University, tours of the West Campus Residence Hall will be available, and I highly recommend that you take one. It is an impressive building and a great addition to our campus.
Also on Friday, our annual Legends and Leaders banquet recognizes alumni who have achieved remarkable success as well as our community partners who have worked tirelessly to help UTC. This year’s honorees are Tim Arnold ’84, president and CEO of Colonial Life, as Distinguished Alumnus; Kino Becton ’03, ’08, national director of government and regulatory affairs at American Water, as Outstanding Young Alumnus; and real estate developer John “Thunder” Thornton for Outstanding Service.
Official campus enrollment numbers are reported as of the 14th day of each semester, and we have our preliminary numbers. This fall, UTC has 11,667 students on campus with our student FTE (full time equivalent) at 10,404, an increase of 1%. Thank you to everyone who worked so hard to recruit an outstanding class, our best prepared ever, with an average high school GPA of 3.56 for incoming freshmen.