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Daily Campus Update for March 27

March 27, 2020 at 5:16 pm

A Message from the Chancellor

Dear Vols,

Congratulations on the end of a great first week of online learning. It’s been encouraging to see everyone embrace this challenge with optimism, imagination, and courage.

This positivity is critical as we rally together to ensure a successful spring term while also doing our part to stop the spread of this virus—and it begins with leadership at the top.

That’s why I’m thrilled that today the Board of Trustees voted to drop “interim” from UT System President Randy Boyd’s title and appoint him to a five-year term. President Boyd has been an eager listener and a constant advocate for our students and our campus, and I’m glad to be able to continue working with him well into the future.

On Tuesday, President Boyd joined me for virtual office hours on Facebook Live, where he said this:

Our job is to serve our students, and the best way we can do that is to know what they need. And the only way to know what they need is by listening.

I could not agree more.

I am proud of your accomplishments this week and to be part of this tremendous university.

Donde Plowman

Taking Care of Yourself

Social distancing and concerns over our well-being and the health and wellness of our loved ones can cause stress and anxiety. We encourage you to read these tips to help keep perspective and remain emotionally well. If you are in crisis and need to speak with someone, the Optum Public Crisis Line is available 24/7 at 866-342-6892. This line is available to everyone, so you can share the number with your family and friends.

Mark Your Calendar: Student Life Launches Virtual Events

The Division of Student Life wants to ensure that all students continue to be engaged with activities throughout their time away from campus. Stay up to date with a list of virtual events and resources by keeping an eye on social media and visiting

Next week, check out Milkshake Monday, March 30 at 1 p.m., and Adulting 101: Making Benefits Work for You, March 31 at 5 p.m.

Vols Stepping Up to Serve

UT alumni across the country are finding ways to support their neighbors and help the fight against the spread of COVID-19. Vols are sewing masks for health care workers, running errands for elderly neighbors, and offering online martial arts classes for students.

Trustees Vote to Give Tenure-Seeking Faculty Extension

The UT Board of Trustees voted Friday to extend the probationary period for tenure-seeking faculty by one year. In an email this afternoon, Provost David Manderscheid updated faculty on the trustees’ vote and other adjustments being made in light of the move to online learning.

Staying Safe While Working Alone

University faculty and staff are strongly encouraged to practice social distancing via telecommuting. However, we recognize there are some essential job functions that require an on-campus presence. It’s important to let someone know where you are, what you will be doing, and when you are no longer alone. One option is to download the LiveSafe app and use the SafeWalk feature while you’re working on campus. LiveSafe is also an easy way to alert the UT Police Department if there is an emergency.

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