- University of Tennessee
University of Tennessee, Knoxville Motto Latin: Veritatem cognoscetis et veritas te liberabit Motto in English You will know the truth and the truth shall set you free. Established 1794 Type Flagship public university Endowment US$664.6 million Chancellor Jimmy Cheek Provost Susan Martin Academic staff 1,309 Admin. staff 8,458 Students 27,523 (Fall 2010) Undergraduates 21,308 (Fall 2010) Postgraduates 6,215 (Fall 2010) Location Knoxville, Tennessee, United States
Campus Four major campuses statewide; Knoxville: Urban; 550 acres (2.2 km2)
Total: 2,128 acres (8.61 km2)
Colors UT Orange  Sports 21 varsity teams, 25 sport clubs Nickname Volunteers and Lady Volunteers Mascot Smokey IX (Bluetick Coonhound) Affiliations Southeastern Conference
[NCAA Division I (FBS)]
Website UTK.edu Data obtained through UTK Fast Facts.
The University of Tennessee (also referred to as the University of Tennessee, Knoxville, UT Knoxville or UT) is a public land-grant university headquartered at Knoxville, Tennessee, United States. Founded in 1794, it is the flagship institution of the statewide University of Tennessee system with nine undergraduate colleges and eleven graduate colleges and hosts almost 28,000 students from all 50 states and more than 100 foreign countries. In its 2011 ranking of universities, U.S. News & World Report ranked UTK at 104th of all national universities and public institutions of higher learning. Its ties to Oak Ridge National Laboratory, established under UT President Andrew Holt and continued under the UT-Battelle partnership, allow for considerable research opportunities for faculty and students.
Also affiliated with the University are the Howard H. Baker, Jr. Center for Public Policy, the University of Tennessee Anthropological Research Facility, and the University of Tennessee Arboretum, which occupies 250 acres (1.0 km2) of nearby Oak Ridge, Tennessee and features hundreds of species of plants indigenous to the region. The University is a direct partner of the University of Tennessee Medical Center, it is one of two Level I trauma centers in the East Tennessee region. As a teaching hospital, it has aggressive medical research programs.
Known for its passionate football tradition, Tennessee's primary economic engine and largest institute of higher learning, the University was nearly destroyed during the Civil War, but rebounded with substantial growth during the Reconstruction era of the United States. The University of Tennessee is the only university in the nation to have three presidential papers editing projects and holds collections of the papers of all three U.S. presidents from Tennessee—Andrew Jackson, James K. Polk and Andrew Johnson.
- 1 History
- 2 Organization
- 3 Students and faculty
- 4 Campus layout and organization
- 5 Student life
- 6 Athletics
- 7 Traditions
- 8 Notable people
- 9 See also
- 10 References
- 11 External links
Founding and early days
On September 10, 1794, two years before Tennessee became a state and at a meeting of the legislature of the Southwest Territory at Knoxville, the University of Tennessee was chartered as Blount College. The new, all-male, non-sectarian institution struggled for 13 years with a small student body and faculty, and in 1807, the school was rechartered as East Tennessee College as a condition of receiving the proceeds from the settlement devised in the Compact of 1806. When Samuel Carrick, its first president and only faculty member, died in 1809, the school was temporarily closed until 1820, and in 1840 was elevated to East Tennessee University. The school's status as a religiously non-affiliated institution of higher learning was unusual for the period of time in which it was chartered, and the school is generally recognized as the oldest such establishment of its kind west of the Appalachian Divide.
Civil War and reconstruction
East Tennessee was considered to be a bastion of Union sympathies throughout the American Civil War, although the University and the city of Knoxville were fairly divided for the duration of the conflict. As the threat of armed conflict between Union and Confederate forces loomed over the city of Knoxville, UT was forced to close its doors to students at the onset of the Siege of Knoxville and the campus's main buildings were requisitioned as hospitals and barracks. The school and its grounds suffered severe damage not only from the Battle of Fort Sanders, but also from its unfortunate position between Union artillery based at Fort Sanders, situated immediately to the north of the 40-acre (160,000 m2) campus, and Fort Dickerson to the south, overlooking the school from a bluff rising above the southern bank of the Tennessee River.
Tennessee was a member of the Confederacy in 1862 with the Morrill Act was passed,providing for endowment funds from the sale of federal land to State agricultural colleges. On February 28, 1867, Congress passed a special Act making the State of Tennessee eligible to participate in the Morrill Act of 1862 program. In January 1869, East Tennessee University was designated as Tennessee's recipient of the Land-Grant designation and funds. In accepting the funds, the University would focus upon instructing students in military, agricultural, and mechanical subjects. UT eventually received $396,000 as its endowment under the program. Trustees soon approved the establishment of a medical program under the auspices of the Nashville School of Medicine and added advanced degree programs. East Tennessee University was renamed the University of Tennessee in 1879.
World War II
Civil rights era
The first African Americans were admitted to the graduate and law schools following a suit filed in federal district court in 1952. The first master's degree was awarded to a black student in 1954, the first Law degree (LlB) in 1956, and the first doctoral degree (Ed.D.) in 1959. Black undergraduates were admitted 1961; the first black faculty member was appointed in 1964. Integration went fairly smoothly; Black students had more difficulty gaining entry to eating establishments and places of entertainment off campus than they did attending class on campus. Overall, Knoxville and the University had fewer racial troubles in the 1950s and 1960s than did other southern universities.
Despite this climate, African-American attorney Rita Sanders Geier filed suit against the state of Tennessee in 1968 alleging that its higher education system remained segregated despite a federal mandate ordering desegregation. She claimed that the opening of a University of Tennessee campus at Nashville, Tennessee would lead to the creation of another predominantly white institution that would strip resources from Tennessee State University, the only state-funded Historically black university. The suit was not settled until 2001, when the Geier Consent Decree resulted in the appropriation of $77 million in state funding to increase diversity among student and faculty populations among all Tennessee institutions of higher learning.
In 1968, the university underwent an administrative reorganization which left the Knoxville campus as the flagship and headquarters of its new "university system," comprising the UT Health Science Center at Memphis, a four-year college at Martin, the formerly private University of Tennessee at Chattanooga (added a year later), the UT Space Institute at Tullahoma, and the Knoxville-based College of Veterinary Medicine, Agriculture Institute, and Public Service Institute. An additional primary campus in Nashville had a brief existence from 1971 to 1979 before it was ordered closed and merged with Tennessee State University.
The University of Tennessee's flagship campus in Knoxville hosts the Institute of Agriculture and the Institute for Public Service. The UT Health Science Center at Memphis and the UT Space Institute at Tullahoma are specialized campuses but are not separate institutions.
The University of Tennessee at Knoxville is the flagship campus of the statewide University of Tennessee system, which is governed by a 26-member board of trustees appointed by the Governor of Tennessee. The campus is headed by a Chancellor who functions as the chief executive officer of the campus, responsible for its daily administration and management. The chancellor reports to the president of the university system and is elected annually by the UT Board of Trustees at the recommendation of the system president. Jimmy Cheek has been Chancellor of the Knoxville campus since February 1, 2009. Joseph A. DiPietro has been system president since January 1, 2011. Provost and Senior Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs Susan D. Martin is responsible for the academic administration of the Knoxville campus and reports directly to the Chancellor.
Campus policing and security is provided by the University of Tennessee Police Department.
- University of Tennessee
- Research budget (2004):
- Main campus: $109,525,996
- Institute of Agriculture: $26,987,367
- Experiment Station: $9,262,186
- Extension: $14,000,673
- Veterinary Medicine: $3,724,508
- Institute for Public Service: $5,882,079
- Space Institute: $2,552,297
- Total: $307.9 million (2006)
- Total budget: $1.4 billion (2006)
- Research budget (2004):
According to the University's 2009 budget, state appropriations increased 26.4 percent from 2000 to 2009, although this amounts to only a 1.1 percent when adjusted for inflation.
University Medical Center
The University of Tennessee Medical Center, administered by University Health Systems and affiliated with the University of Tennessee Graduate School of Medicine, collaborates with the University of Tennessee Health Science Center to attract and train the majority of its medical staff. Many doctors and nurses at UTMC have integrated careers as teachers and healthcare professionals, and the center promotes itself as the area's only academic, or "teaching hospital." Serving on the UTMC Board of Directors are the President of the University of Tennessee, the Chancellor of the University of Tennessee Health Science Center, and UT President Emeritus Joseph E. Johnson, Ph.D.
The University Medical Center is the primary referral center for Eastern Tennessee, Western North Carolina, and Southeastern Kentucky and along with Johnson City Medical Center, it is one of two Level I trauma centers in the East Tennessee geographic region. Extensive expansion programs were embarked upon the 1990s and 2000s and saw the construction of two sprawling additions to the hospital's campus, a new Cancer Institute and a Heart Lung Vascular Institute. The new UT Medical Center Heart Hospital received its first patient on April 27, 2010. The facility is served by LIFESTAR, a fleet of Bell helicopters providing aeromedical evacuation support within a 150-mile (240 km) radius of Knoxville.
Students and faculty
Demographics of student body Racial/ethnic group Percent of student body African American 7.0% Asian American 2% Caucasian 83.0% Hispanic American 1% Native American 0% International student 5.0%
During the 2007-2008 academic calendar year, the University of Tennessee at Knoxville had a total enrollment of 21,132 undergraduate and 5,670 graduate and professional students. UT hosts students from all 50 U.S. states and more than 100 foreign countries, although the majority of undergraduates hail from the American Southeast states of Tennessee, North Carolina, Georgia, and Virginia, with more than 14,000 from Tennessee alone. 51% of students are female, 49% are male, and 16% of UT students identify themselves as non-caucasian.
UT offers its students more than 300 degree programs in its eleven colleges of: Agricultural Sciences and Natural Resources, Architecture and Design, Arts and Sciences, Business Administration, Communication and Information, Health, Education, and Human Sciences, Engineering, Law, Nursing, Social Work, and Veterinary Medicine, and offers two intercollegiate programs in Aviation Systems, through the University of Tennessee Space Institute at Tullahoma, and Cooperative and Experimental Medicine at the University of Tennessee Health Science Center in Memphis. The University employs 1,550 full-time faculty members, of whom 57% are tenured and 81% claim a Ph.D or other terminal degree in their respective fields. As of the 2007-2008 academic year, 71% of courses taken featured class sizes smaller than 30 students, and students at the Knoxville campus enjoy a 16:1 ratio of faculty-to-students.
The university is classified as "more selective" by U.S. News & World Report, with a Fall 2008 acceptance rate of 64.8%.
University rankings (overall) National Forbes 180 U.S. News & World Report 101 Washington Monthly 178
The University of Tennessee is ranked 47th among public universities of America, and 101st among all United States universities by U.S. News & World Report, making it a first tier institution.
Specialty rankings are:
- 1 UT's Physician Executive MBA program of the College of Business Administration according to Modern Physician.
- 1 UT MBA program in alumni value (value for the money) three years after graduation, according to Financial Times Global Business School Rankings.
- 2 UT's College of Architecture and Design out of Southern Universities according to the journal DesignIntelligence in its publication "America's Best Architecture & Design Schools".
- 2 The supply chain management/logistics programs as published in Supply Chain Management Review.
- 3 UT graduate program in printmaking by U.S. News & World Report.
- 5 UT MBA program overall among U.S. Public Universities according to Wall Street Journal 2005.
- 5 Best Athletic Facilities according to the Princeton Review.
- 6 UT's senior executive MBA program, for alumni goal achievement and satisfaction according to the Financial Times.
- 7 The supply chain management/logistics programs in the UT College of Business Administration, according to U.S. News & World Report.
- 7 The pharmacy program, according to U.S. News & World Report.
- 8 Best Parties according to Playboy Magazine.
- 9 UT MBA Program by Forbes Magazine.
- 9 UT Health Science Center Department of Ophthalmology by Ophthalmology Times.
- 9 UT's Athletic Program by the Hall of Fame's ranking of Top Collegiate Athletic Programs.
- 10 UT College of Law, in the National Jurist Best School for the Money ratings, and the clinical training specialty is ranked 19th while the college's overall graduate program is ranked 53rd in the U.S.
- 10 UT's Nuclear Engineering graduate program, according to U.S. News and World Report.
- 14 UT's School of Veterinary Medicine
- 15 Most Fraternity & Sorority friendly according to the Princeton Review.
- 16 Least Tolerant of Homosexuality according to the Princeton Review (Note: UT's one of only 3 public universities within the top 16, the other 12 are private, religiously affiliated universities).
- 19 Most Athletic Student Body according to the Princeton Review.
- 25 Most Attractive Student Body by AOL Time Warner's PopCrunch Magazine.
- 26 UT's College of Social Work, according to U.S. News & World Report.
- 35 UT's College of Education, Health and Human Science.
- 45 UT Master of Fine Arts program by U.S. News & World Report.
- The John C. Hodges Library ranks among the top 30 public research libraries of the United States.
- The Joel A. Katz Law Library in the UT College of Law is ninth best in the nation according to National Jurist magazine.
- The University of Tennessee is ranked as a Best Southeastern College by the Princeton Review.
The total research endowment of the UT Knoxville campus was $127,983,213 for FY 2006. UT Knoxville boasts several faculty who are among the leading contributors to their fields, including Harry McSween, generally recognized as one of the world's leading experts in the study of meteorites and a member of the science team for Mars Pathfinder and later a co-investigator for the Mars Odyssey and Mars Exploration Rovers projects. The university also hosts Barry T. Rouse, an international award-winning Distinguished Professor of Microbiology who has conducted multiple NIH-funded studies on the herpes simplex virus (HSV) and who is a leading researcher in his field. UT's agricultural research programs are considered to be among the most accomplished in the nation, and the School of Agricultural Sciences and Natural Resources is home to the East Tennessee Clean Fuels Initiative, recognized by the United States Department of Energy as the "best local clean fuels program in America.". UT Knoxville operates the most powerful U.S. academic supercomputer, Kraken, a National Institute for Computational Sciences supercomputer hosted on the Oak Ridge National Laboratory campus.
- Oak Ridge National Laboratory
The major hub of research at the University of Tennessee is Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL), one of the largest government laboratories in the United States. ORNL is a major center of civilian and governmental research and features one of the world's most powerful supercomputers. The University is a participant in the Open Science Grid which allows physicists to process data from the Large Hadron Collider in Switzerland.
- Howard H. Baker, Jr. Center for Public Policy
The Howard H. Baker, Jr. Center for Public Policy began its activities at the University of Tennessee in early 2003. The mission of the Baker Center is to develop programs and promote research to further the public's knowledge of the American system of governance, and also to explore the importance of public service. The Baker Center places a special emphasis on examining the role of the media in society and maintains and promotes research in the papers of Howard Baker and other political collections at the University of Tennessee. It hosts public programs on issues of local, regional, national, and international significance which focus upon a wide array of topics, with special interest given to the role of the media. The Baker Center creates a number of individual and recurring publications for students, faculty, community members and policy makers. Its most prestigious publication, the Baker Center Journal of Applied Public Policy, is published twice a year, but Baker Center fellows often publish editorials and articles on a more regular basis. Many of the Center's conferences produce policy publications designed to address problems and to produce applicable, real world solutions.
Campus layout and organization
The university traces its roots to September 10, 1794, two years before Tennessee was admitted to the Union as the 16th state, when Blount College was established by the legislature of the Southwest Territory as one of the first three colleges chartered west of the Appalachian Mountains. At this time, Knoxville was the territorial capital and the area of land occupied by the University was largely farmland bordering a broad stretch of the Tennessee River. In 1807 the school was rechristened East Tennessee College and in 1828 was moved from Gay Street in downtown Knoxville to a 40 acre (160,000 m²) tract known as Barbara Hill, named in honor of Governor Blount's daughter, and was renamed East Tennessee University in 1848. Known to students and alumni today as simply "The Hill," it is only a small part of the Knoxville campus but constitutes a veritable acropolis of expansive and well-preserved red-brick buildings. Construction of the iconic Ayres Hall was completed in 1921 following the Tennessee State Legislature's first $1 million appropriation, and today that structure remains the most widely recognized symbol of the flagship Knoxville campus.
The main Knoxville campus can be divided into three distinct blocks of housing, academic, and athletic structures. Two main avenues of traffic, Volunteer Boulevard and Andy Holt Avenue bisect the campus, intersecting with smaller side streets. The majority of dormitories share a north street face along Andy Holt Avenue, which is broken by the Pedestrian Mall and Walkway between the John C. Hodges Library and the Humanities Plaza complex. The terrain of the campus is mostly hilly in its outlay and the school is bound by the Tennessee River to the South and a section of U.S. Route 70 to the North. Known to Knoxvillians as Cumberland Avenue and to UT students and faculty simply as "The Strip," this roughly half-mile stretch of road is home to many businesses and eateries serving the University population and is a popular entertainment venue throughout the year.
A number of capital improvement project were undertaken in the 1990s and 2000s and resulted in major additions to the campus, including the James A. Haslam II Business Building, the Howard H. Baker, Jr. Center for Public Policy Building, and the Joe Johnson and John Ward Pedestrian Mall that replaced a section of Andy Holt Avenue which had previously separated the central student study hub of John C. Hodges Library from the heavily trafficked Humanities Plaza office and classroom complex. That project was a significant beautification effort which established a central, tree-lined commons area for the Knoxville campus, complete with an amphitheater and a large expanse of open green space with a panoramic vista of The Hill and downtown Knoxville.
The campus is well served by the "T," a fleet of brightly painted orange buses operated by biodiesel fuels, transporting University faculty, students, and staff at no charge. The "T-Link" is an on-call taxi service available after dark to students who are not comfortable traveling alone on campus or through adjoining residential neighborhoods such as the popular Fort Sanders, and is offered at no charge to students who present a valid UT student ID card.
The University of Tennessee Agricultural Campus is directly adjacent to the main Knoxville campus and is home to the largest portion of the University's principle agricultural and natural sciences research infrastructure, but occupies only a fraction of the total lands held by the University for research purposes. The Ag Campus is the site of UT's Plant Biotech Building and associated facilities, the Biosystems Engineering and Environmental Sciences facility, UT's College of Veterinary Medicine and its associated teaching hospital of veterinary medicine, the Pendergrass Library Agricultural and Veterinary Medicine Library, the Tennessee Division of Forestry, UT's new Business Incubator, built in conjunction with Oak Ridge National Laboratory, the Forestry Products and Resources facility, vast greenhouses and growth chambers, and the administrative offices and multiple classroom halls devoted to UT's College of Agricultural Sciences and Natural Resources. Numerous sites further afield, in both Knox County and Blount County are held by the University and are devoted to multiple endeavors of agricultural and forestry sciences, including the cultivation and research of forestry products and the production of biofuels. The UT Gardens occupy the portion of the Ag Campus bordering the Tennessee River and feature hundreds of species of native plants and constitute a sizable arboretum that is open to University affiliates and the public throughout the year.
The University of Tennessee Anthropological Research Facility, nicknamed the "Body Farm", is located near the University of Tennessee Medical Center on Alcoa Highway (US 129). Founded by Dr. William M. Bass in 1972, the Body Farm endeavors to increase anthropological and forensic knowledge specifically related to the decomposition of the human body and is one of the leading centers for such research in the United States.
Cherokee Research Campus
On March 16, 2009, the University broke ground on a 188 acres (76 ha) campus in downtown Knoxville which will feature new, world-class facilities devoted to the pursuit of nanotechnology, neutron science, and materials sciences, energy and climate studies, environmental science, and biomedical science. This new hub will dramatically expand the University's research capacity, and operations will be a collaboration between the University, Oak Ridge National Laboratory, the State of Tennessee, and the private sector. Currently, 16 research and support structures have been designed for the campus, and the master plan allows for the development of more, as well as expansion of existing facilities once they are built. Construction is scheduled to begin on campus infrastructure in August 2009.
Campus master plan
The University has implemented a 25-year (2001–2026) campus master plan that will facilitate a sweeping overhaul of campus design. The plan is designed to make the campus more pedestrian-friendly by establishing large areas of open green space and relegating parking facilities to the periphery of the campus, and to increase the aesthetic appeal of the school by establishing uniform building design codes and by physically remodeling, restoring, and expanding existing academic, athletic, and housing facilities. Centrally located, iconic Ayres Hall is currently undergoing a massive upgrade as part of Phase I of the project, with work expected to be completed around 2011. A new university center is planned, along with substantial new facilities for science, the performing arts, and athletics. An expected 3,000 new parking spaces will be developed along with improved mass transit and walking spaces. The plan calls for the removal of many of the roads that bisect the campus, along with the development of two new quads, one each on the main and agricultural campuses. Restoration and renovations of existing campus buildings are expected to be conducted in concert with historical preservationists when appropriate, according to the 2001 Master Plan document.
- Pedestrian Mall and Amphitheater
- The Pedestrian Mall and its adjoining, grassy amphitheater is the most popular student gathering point on campus, situated between the John C. Hodges Library and the Humanities Plaza complex of McClung Tower and the Humanities classroom building. Studying, kite-flying, protests, proselytizing, hammock lounging, picnics, sunbathing, frisbee, barbecues and free concerts are common activities that occur throughout the academic year and beyond.
- Students and faculty not affiliated with the athletic department enjoy free use of the state-of-the-art Tennessee Recreational Center for Students, known universally on campus as "T-RECS." T-RECS offers an Olympic-sized swimming pool, four indoor basketball courts, more than 80 cardiovascular exercise stations with access to an in-house entertainment center and XM radio, more than 100 strength training centers, multiple banks of free weights, and a Smoothie King. T-RECS patrons may borrow a variety of equipment for outdoor activities such as soccer and tennis for no charge.
- International House
- The International House is a popular gathering place for visiting international students and delegations and University of Tennessee students who have previously or are currently interested in studying abroad through the Programs Abroad Office. A full kitchen, meeting rooms, and a library provide support for frequent cultural events ranging from salsa dance lessons and nation-themed culture nights to Peace Corps interest meetings.
- Black Cultural Center
- The Black Cultural Center, or BCC, houses the Office of Minority Student Affairs and offers a student computer lab, free Spanish tutoring, and a textbook loan service for economically disadvantaged students. There is a small but well-stocked library featuring numerous works examining religious and minority issues, and the facility offers free use of its meeting rooms to campus organizations and their affiliates.
The University of Tennessee has over 450 registered student organizations. These groups cater to a variety of interests and provide options for those interested in service, sports, arts, social activities, government, politics, cultural issues, and Greek societies.
The University of Tennessee hosts the Destination Imagination Global Finals, a problem solving competition held annually during the last week of May. The event draws thousands of young students and their families to Knoxville and is a significant event for the campus after the end of each academic year. Numerous religious centers are located along "Church Row," including the University of Tennessee's Baptist Collegiate Ministry, the Christian Student Fellowship, the Knoxville campus' Non-Denominational Protestant Christian group, the Wesley Foundation (a United Methodist student center), Pope John XXIII (a Catholic student center), and the Christian Student Center. Honors societies also have a strong presence on the campus with Mortar Board, Omicron Delta Kappa, and the Scarabbean Senior Society as the most prestigious.
The university operates two radio stations: student-run The Rock (formerly the Torch) (WUTK-FM 90.3 MHz) and National Public Radio affiliate WUOT-FM 91.9 MHz. The university's first radio station was on the AM frequency 850 kHz, a donation from Knoxville radio station WIVK-AM/FM. The Phoenix, a literary art magazine, is published in the fall and spring semesters and showcases student artistic creativity. The Tennessee Journalist (TNJN) is an online news publication of the School of Journalism and Electronic Media and is a collaboration of regular editorial staff and student contributors, many of whom receive classroom credit for their work.
- The Daily Beacon
The editorially independent student newspaper of the University publishes 15,000 copies a day, five days a week, and claims a staff of over 100 consisting of an editorial team of 14, more than 60 staff writers, photographers, copyeditors, and others during the Fall and Spring semesters. The paper publishes twice weekly during the summer semester (May through August) and has significantly fewer staff writers at that time.
The publication began as a semi-monthly publication under the name The University Times-Prospectus in 1871. The Orange and White followed in 1906 as a weekly publication and was later published semi-weekly. The Daily Beacon was established 61 years later under the management of alumnus David Hall (1965) and was published four times per week and soon saw publication each day of the academic week. Approximately 180 issues per academic year are published while classes are in session. The newspaper unveiled a drastically improved website and content management system in 2010, marking a significant new emphasis on online distribution. It began publishing on the Kindle shortly thereafter, becoming the first daily student newspaper to do so.
The University of Tennessee hosts 18 sororities and 29 fraternities.
The University of Tennessee has a Residence Hall Association. Created in 1972 as the Inter-Residence Halls Council, the IRHC changed its name to the United Residence Halls Council (URHC) the next year. URHC sponsors many events focusing on various aspects of on-campus living throughout the fall and spring semesters. In addition, URHC serves as an advocacy board for all on-campus residents. Residents can use URHC as a vehicle to promote positive change on campus.
URHC is the second largest student organization on campus with over 7,000 on-campus residents enjoying full membership. Each of the twelve residence halls has its own RHA hosting smaller scale, more hall specific programs. Each RHA has its own executive board to govern the activities of its residence hall. Each RHA's budget consists of $11 per bed that is allocated from each student's housing activities fee. The URHC holds biweekly general body meetings that are open to all residents.
The University of Tennessee, Knoxville is also affiliated with the National Association of College and University Residence Halls (NACURH) as well as the South Atlantic Affiliate of College and University Residence Halls (SAACURH). In 2010, UTK was the host institution of the NACURH Services and Recognition Office (NSRO), a national office that changes host institutions every two years.
UT Knoxville is home of Rocky Top Battalion, an Army Reserve Officers' Training Corps program. The Battalion puts on the Mountain Man Memorial March each year in Gatlinburg, Tennessee. This 26.2-mile (42.2 km) ruck/road march was started to honor fallen soldier Frank B. Walkup (a Rocky Top Battalion alum killed in action in Iraq on 16 June 2007), and has since expanded to honor all fallen soldiers and their families. Proceeds from the event benefit the Gold Star Mothers and the Wounded Warrior Campaign. In its fourth year, the march offered full and half marathon divisions, as well as a 10K. Each division has military and civilian categories -- all are welcome to participate.
One of the most well known parts of the program is the Dragoon Company, the oldest part of the campus ROTC. Formed as part of the US 2nd Dragoons in the Mexican-American War, the Dragoons lead every Vol Walk before every home football game and represent the University and ROTC on and off campus. They can be recognized by their uniforms designed to accurately represent the uniforms from the Mexican-American war, and the Dragoons carry the university flag, state flag, and national colors.
Tennessee competes in the Southeastern Conference's Eastern Division, along with Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, South Carolina, and Vanderbilt, and has longstanding football rivalries with each. The Volunteers won the 1998 NCAA Division I-A National Championship in football, and the team is noted for its 1938, 1940, 1950, 1951 and 1998 National Championship victories. The Volunteers were coached by Phillip Fulmer from 1992 until November 2008, succeeded by Lane Kiffin who left one year later. In January 2010, Derek Dooley was signed as the new head coach. Super Bowl champion Peyton Manning and the late NFL Hall of Fame player Reggie White are among the numerous NFL athletes to begin their careers at the University of Tennessee. The men's basketball program is headed by Cuonzo Martin, and in 2008 the Vols won their first SEC regular season championship in 41 years. In 2010, the men's team advanced to the Elite Eight, or quarterfinal round, in the NCAA Division I Men's Basketball Tournament for the first time.
The Tennessee Lady Volunteers have won eight NCAA Division I titles (1987, 1989, 1991, 1996, 1997, 1998, 2007, 2008), the most in women's college basketball history and are led by Pat Summitt, the all-time winningest basketball coach in NCAA history. Her 1,000th victory occurred on February 5, 2009, and she boasts a 100 percent graduation rate for all players who finish their career at UT. The main women's basketball rivals for Tennessee within the conference are Georgia, Vanderbilt, and LSU.
UT's best-known athletic facility by far is Neyland Stadium, home to the football team, which seats over 102,000 people and is one of the country's largest facilities of its type. The stadium is currently undergoing a $200 million renovation with construction expected to last into the 2010s. The Volunteers and Lady Vols basketball teams play in Thompson-Boling Arena, the largest arena (by capacity) ever built specifically for basketball in the United States. Both basketball teams currently train at the adjacent Pratt Pavilion, a $20 million facility opened in 2008 which houses two full size gymnasia, one each for the men and women varsity basketball teams, and space for sports medicine, strength training, film study, and recruiting.
The swimming program trains at the Jones Aquatic Center, which is directly adjacent to the Student Aquatic Center. This first-class complex is capable of hosting the Southeastern Conference and NCAA Championships, as well as national and international events. Also included in the new facility is a weight room, training room, and the University of Tennessee Swimming and Diving Hall of Fame.
The university also offers a number of recreational sports, many offering intercollegiate play. Sports include soccer, wrestling, hockey, crew, golf and paintball. Teams often join intercollegiate conferences, such as the Southeastern Collegiate Hockey Conference, or play Southeastern Conference and in other rivals on a regular basis.
The University of Tennessee has accumulated numerous traditions over its long history.
Charles Moore, president of the university's athletic association, chose orange and white for the school colors on April 12, 1889. His inspiration is said to have come from orange and white daisies which grew on the Hill. To this day there are still orange and white flowers grown outside the University Center. Although students confirmed the colors at a special meeting in 1892, dissatisfaction caused the colors to be dropped. No other acceptable colors were agreed to, however, so the colors were reinstated one day later and orange and white have remained the university colors since.
Pride of the Southland Band
The Pride of the Southland Band (or simply The Pride) is UT's marching band. As one of the oldest institutions at the university, the band partakes in many of the gameday traditions. At every home game, the Pride performs the "March to the Stadium" which includes a parade sequence and climaxes when the band stops at the bottom of The Hill and performs the "Salute to the Hill", an homage to the history and legacy of the university. The band is known for its pregame show at the beginning of every home game, which ends with the football team running onto the field through the "Opening of the T". This is one of the most photographed moments in football. Every year, the Pride performs the famous "Tennessee Circle Drill". It is performed at least twice a year, with only one home performance.
The official fight song is "Down the Field", which is played when the Pride "Opens the T" for the team to run through at the end of their pregame show, as well as after a Vols score.
Although it is the most frequently played song at football games on campus, "Rocky Top" is not the official fight song for the University. "Rocky Top" was written in only ten minutes by songwriters Felice and Boudleaux Bryant in 1967 while they were working in Gatlinburg on a collection of slow-tempo songs for a project for Archie Campbell and Chet Atkins. Writing the fast-paced "Rocky Top" served as a temporary diversion for them. Known elsewhere in the United States as a bluegrass tune, the song did not become popular until after 1972 when the Pride first introduced it during a routine drill. Its popularity now extends beyond the campus of the University of Tennessee; "Rocky Top" became one of the Tennessee state songs in 1982. The popularity of the song among inebriated bar crowds was such in the 1970s that in its national tours the North Carolina string band, The Red Clay Ramblers, for many years performed a satirical tune informally titled, "Play 'Rocky Top' (or I'll Punch Your Lights Out)."
In 1953 the campus Pep Club sponsored a contest to have a live mascot. The hound was chosen after announcements recruiting potential mascots in a local newspaper read, "This can't be an ordinary hound. He must be a 'Houn' Dawg' in the best sense of the word." The Rev. William C. "Bill" Brooks entered his prizewinning Bluetick Coonhound "Brooks' Blue Smokey", which won against other eight contestants. According to a popular tale, Smokey barked when his name was called at half-time contest and students cheered as Smokey threw his head back and howled again, and UT thus claimed its new mascot. The current mascot is Smokey IX and is cared for by two student trainers from the Alpha Gamma Rho fraternity.
Tennessee is known as the "Volunteer State" for the large number of Tennesseans who volunteered for duty in the War of 1812, the Mexican-American War, and the American Civil War. A UT athletic team was dubbed the Volunteers for the first time in 1902 by the Atlanta Constitution following a football game against the Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets, although the Knoxville Journal and Tribune did not use the name until 1905. By the fall of 1905 both the Journal and the then-Sentinel were using the nickname. With the creation of women's athletics later in the 20th century, female athletic teams became known as the Lady Volunteers. All varsity teams continue to use their nicknames today, although often shortened to simply "Vols" or "Lady Vols."
Unearthed in the 1960s, the Rock probably soon thereafter became a “canvas” for student messages. For years the university sandblasted away the messages but eventually deferred to students’ artistic endeavors. The Daily Beacon has editorialized: “Originally a smaller rock, The Rock has grown in prestige and size while thousands of coats of paint have been thrown on its jagged face. Really, its function is as an open forum for students.”
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- Official website
- Official men's athletics website
- Official women's athletics website
- The history behind many school traditions summarized by former university historian Milton M. Klein
- University of Tennessee's channel on YouTube
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