Community

We strive to fulfill our mission as a land-grant university by serving the citizens of our community and state—and increasingly, our nation and world. Our efforts extend beyond the campus and into our community through many partnerships, ranging from an annual statewide high school science and humanities symposium to scholarship programs to recruit and retain students from underserved populations.

In the Knoxville community, faculty and graduate students in sports psychology help local girls develop good exercise habits and healthy self-images; our College of Law performs pro bono work for underserved clients; and our Veterinary Social Work program supports pet owners during care for their animals.

In the US, UT strives to help combat hunger, homelessness, natural disaster destruction, and poverty from Appalachia, through the South, to the Great Lakes, and Washington, DC.

Our students also take part in community improvement projects around the world including medical missions in Guatemala, farming and gardening sustainability in Uganda and Jamaica, and potable water system creation in Peru.

Students also lead the way in giving back to the community by volunteering with organizations such as the Boys & Girls Club, Habitat for Humanity, the Special Olympics of Greater Knoxville, the Knox County Read With Me children’s literacy program, the Ronald McDonald House, and East Tennessee Children’s Hospital.

But our interaction with the community does not simply flow outward; members of the public have free access to many of UT’s cultural and academic resources, including the Frank H. McClung Museum, the UT Gardens, music recitals, and public lectures.

UT generates $1.6 billion in annual income for the state of Tennessee, creates nearly 33,000 jobs, and contributes more than $125 million in tax revenue to the state and local governments, according to a study by our Center for Business and Economic Research.

The university’s partnership with Battelle Memorial Institute to manage Oak Ridge National Laboratory continues to attract leading researchers to Tennessee.

UT contributes to every aspect of life, and we continue to move forward in our mission to be the preeminent public research university linking the people of Tennessee to the community, the nation, and the world.

Community News

Chili the Border Collie Helps Students Relax at School

The News Sentinel recently published a story about Chili, an 8-year-old Border Collie mix, who serves in the Gresham Middle School counseling office. Chili is part of H.A.B.I.T., Human-Animal Bond in Tennessee, a program of the College of Veterinary Medicine at UT that brings animal-assisted therapy and visitation programs to facilities including area schools.


University to Host Statewide Experiential Learning Conference

UT has launched a new statewide undergraduate experiential learning conference for students open to all fifty-four accredited not-for-profit colleges and universities in Tennessee.


Faculty and Staff to Lead Sessions on Civility, Social Media Bullying

The UT Libraries Diversity Committee and Office for Diversity and Inclusion is hosting a series of "Lunch and Learn" discussions surrounding the theme of difficult conversations.


History Department to Host Workshop for High School Teachers September 26

Area high school teachers will have the opportunity to learn best teaching practices on subjects ranging from ancient Chinese philosophy to the cultural impact of Alex Haley’s novel Roots at a half-day program hosted by UT's history department on Saturday, September 26.


Big Orange Emojis to Share Your Vol Spirit

Add some Big Orange spirit to your text messages and social media with Big Orange emojis. Download the themed stickers to your mobile device and add Smokey, Neyland Stadium, and the Rock to your posts. Find the emojis and directions for their use on Tennessee Today. Check back often for more scenes from Vol Nation.


In the Red Zone: How to Prevent Sexual Assault

The Center for Health Education and Wellness wants the university community to help change the statistics of sexual assault on college campuses. Red Zone is a term used to describe the period in the fall semester when students are statistically more at risk for sexual assault.


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