First Black Undergraduate to Earn a Degree, Brenda Lewis Peel
In 1964, psychology major Brenda Lewis Peel was the first Black undergraduate to earn a bachelor’s degree from UT. A Knoxville native, Peel transferred to UT following the integration of undergraduate students in 1961. She had been attending Westminster College, a Presbyterian-affiliated integrated school in Pennsylvania. Peel worked for 30 years as an educator. After graduation, she worked for three years in the Knoxville City Schools system. Following a move to Atlanta, she earned a master’s degree and an EdS in guidance and counseling from Georgia State University and became a school counselor for 27 years in the Atlanta Public Schools system. Peel retired in 2002.