Every year, the average American school teacher spends approximately $1,000 of their own money on school supplies. For five years and counting, new Mocs have helped to alleviate some of that pressure by donating school supplies to the Stuff the Bus program at Orientation.

This year alone, UTC raised $10,000 dollars worth of supplies for local elementary schools. The supplies are collected from new students in exchange for a UTC shirt as they arrive at Orientation.

“At UTC, we’re all about community service. Our Campus is a wonderful place, and you get all that when they come here, but you also get the Chattanooga community. We’re tied to this community, but we want to do more than just tell them that, we want to show them. It’s two fold: we tie these new students into their new community, and we show the community what great new community members they’re gaining,” said Carrie Sherbesman, Director of UTC New Student & Family Programs.

Traditionally, UTC has chosen a local school to donate the school supplies to, but this year, we partnered with United Way, which has a large scale Stuff the Bus campaign in Hamilton County.

“We partnered with them because our Campus already has such a good relationship with United Way, and it was such a good opportunity for us to collaborate,” Sherbesman said.

Chancellor Steven Angle gathered with Scrappy and UTC students to stuff a Carta bus full of school supplies for local children. The supplies donated by UTC were used to stuff backpacks as a part of the Nehemiah Project, which donates supplies to needy students at eleven local Title I elementary schools.

“The exciting thing is, it’s not just the students getting involved, but their families as well. Parents and guests that come with them bring supplies too, particularly the ones who are school teachers who know now necessary this is. A little from each person adds up to over $10,000 worth of supplies!” Sherbesman said. “Everyone was so excited to be there, including our partners, Carta and United Way, and everyone brought ideas to the table to make it bigger and better next year, so we’re looking forward to that.”

Media Relations Contacts: Email Shawn Ryan or call (423) 425-4363.

University Relations Staff Writer. (423)425-4363

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