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Spring 2018 Graduate Hooding Ceremony

The Spring 2018 Graduate Hooding Ceremony took place at Thompson-Boling Arena on May 10 and it was a wonderful ceremony. Congratulations to all of our graduates and everyone appreciates your sharing this moment with us.

Vincent Ray Price, PHD in Teacher Education

Besides the over 400 doctoral, master’s and specialist in education graduates who participated in the ceremony, graduate students played other important roles in the ceremony. Sergio C. Bedford, the outgoing Graduate Student Senate president, started off the proceedings as program announcer. Emily Simmons, who graduated spring 2018 with a Master of Music in vocal performance, led the audience in the national anthem to begin the ceremony, and the alma mater to close. Joe Lybarger, who is working on his PhD in Communication Studies, read over 300 names of master’s candidates to announce their arrival on stage. And Vincent Ray Price, who received his hood last night as a PhD in Teacher Education, served as our student speaker, reminding us to “dedicate our energy to filling the air with sounds that we ourselves need to hear, for the sake of who we are as educators, as scholars and researchers, as parents and children, as members of the community, as citizens to whatever nation we belong, as people.”

Members of the UT faculty and administration were on hand to show their support for the graduates. Among the deans and dignitaries on stage were Interim Provost John Zomchick, who had the honor of conferring degrees, and our own Vice Provost and Dean of the Graduate School, Dixie L. Thompson. We were also joined by Stacey Patterson, Vice President for Research, Outreach and Economic Development for the UT system. Patterson added her own words to the encouragement, enthusiasm and congratulations expressed by others at the podium. Many faculty came to serve as hooder for their doctoral graduates, while others came just to share in the joy as students from their departments received the recognition that they have worked for over the past years.

Congratulations again to our graduates!


Spring 2018 Graduate Hooding Ceremony Tonight!

Congratulations to all our graduate and professional students that are graduating spring 2018! We hope to see you all at the Spring 2018 Graduate Hooding Ceremony. If you are participating in the ceremony, please be there at 6:00 p.m.

A few other items to remember:

  • The Clear Bag Policy is in effect tonight. Not sure what that means? Details at Thompson-Boling.
  • Parking at G10 is your best option.
  • Use the #uthooding2018 hashtag to share on social media.

If you’re a doctoral graduate:

  • Be at the Ray Mears Room at 6:00 p.m.
  • Have your regalia with you.

If you’re a master’s or specialist in education graduate:

  • Get there at 6:00 p.m.
  • Enter at the East Entrance of Thompson Boling
  • Check-in at the Master’s Check-in table.
  • After getting your card, be seated in your college’s area.

Most of all, have a great time! We’re looking forward to seeing everyone there.

Brasswind Quintet to Play at the Spring 2018 Graduate Hooding Ceremony

Brasswind Quintet: Cathy Leach, trumpet; Alex Van Duuren, trombone; Alex Lapins, tuba; Katie Johnson, horn; Elise Armstrong, trumpet

Left to right: Cathy Leach, trumpet; Alex Van Duuren, trombone; Alex Lapins, tuba; Katie Johnson, horn; Elise Armstrong, trumpet

The Graduate School is pleased to have the UT Faculty Brasswind Quintet play at the Spring 2018 Graduate Hooding Ceremony. Made up of four UT music faculty members and one graduate music student, this ensemble performs regularly on campus, throughout the greater Knoxville area, and throughout the state and region. They have premiered many brass quintet works by various composers, including pieces by UT composition faculty. Maintaining a busy and diverse chamber music performance schedule is central to the pedagogy these musicians share with their students, and is a critical link to engaging the arts and arts-education communities of the state of Tennessee.

Clear Bag Policy at the Spring 2018 Graduate Hooding Ceremony

Anyone planning to attend the Spring 2018 Graduate Hooding Ceremony should be aware that Thompson Boling maintains a Clear Bag Policy for the security of everyone. We have a page with a basic guide to the policy, but to be sure what you can and can’t bring to the ceremony, you may want to check the Thompson Boling site.

If you are a participant in the ceremony, realize that there is no secure place to leave any of your items, so we recommend that you don’t bring anything that you can’t carry securely on your person.

PhD Candidate Brittany Coppinger Receives Awards for Research

PhD student Brittany Coppinger recently received two awards for a research project involving social and communicative complexity in avian populations. One award is a student research grant from the Animal Behavior Society, a professional organization “dedicated to promoting and advancing the scientific study of animal behavior.” The second award is the Werner and Hildegard Hesse Award, a nationally competitive award from the American Ornithology Society.

Brittany Coppinger is working toward a PhD in experimental psychology in the Department of Psychology, where she works with Prof. Todd Freeberg in the Comparative Communication Laboratory. Her research project, “Flock density and its influences on social and vocal complexity,” focuses on using Carolina chickadees as a model system for testing how social complexity influences variation in communicative complexity. This research, which is the final project for her dissertation, will begin in the fall.

Emily Simmons, Master of Music Graduate, Soloist at the Spring 2018 Graduate Hooding Ceremony

 Every semester, we find outstanding vocalists to perform the national anthem and to lead the audience in the UT Alma Mater. For the Spring 2018 Graduate Hooding Ceremony, we are honored to have Emily Simmons as our soloist. She will be performing at the ceremony on May 10 at Thompson Boling Arena.

Emily Simmons, soprano, graduates in the Spring of 2018 with a Master of Music in vocal performance. During her time with UT Opera Theatre she has been featured in roles such as Countess Almaviva (Le nozze di Figaro), Abigail Williams (The Crucible), and Fortuna/Giunone (Il ritorno d’Ulisse in Patria). Emily is proud to be a Vol!

Residency Classification Deadlines for Summer 2018

Your residency classification has an impact on your tuition and fees. Your initial classification is determined by the information you have provided on your application for admission to the Graduate School. If you believe that your initial residency classification is incorrect, you may appeal the classification. If you are choosing to appeal your residency application, be sure to submit your appeal to the Office of Graduate Admissions prior to May 29th, which is the deadline for paying your fees for summer 2018. If you submit your appeal after May 29th, your registration may be cancelled for non-payment of any outstanding fees. The final deadline for submitting a residency appeal for summer 2018 is June 8th. Any appeals received after that date will be reviewed for fall 2018.

Those participating in the Work Rule Program must submit their Work Rule Application and verification of employment letter(s) from in-state employer(s) to the Office of Graduate Admissions by May 29th.

New Graduate Student Senate Administration Prepares for the Upcoming Year

Sergio C. Bedford (left) congratulates Cara Sulyok (right), the new GSS president.

As the 2017–2018 academic year comes to a close, the Graduate Student Senate is making plans to continue its outstanding support for the UT graduate and professional student community in 2018–2019. Tasked with leadership of the GSS for the coming year are Cara Sulyok, the incoming president, and Jack Ryan, the incoming vice president.

Cara Sulyok is in her third year of a PhD program in mathematics. She has served on the Graduate Student Senate as both a senator for the Department of Mathematics and as the chair of the Communications and Outreach Committee. Jack Ryan, also working on a PhD in mathematics, is in his second year of study. He is currently on the executive board for OUTGrads.

The Graduate Student Senate has flourished under the leadership of outgoing president Sergio C. Bedford and vice president Jamie Greig. One of their most notable achievements was getting graduate students to pass a constitution for the newly formed Graduate and Professional Student Association. This passage was the conclusion of a multi-year effort to provide autonomy for the graduate and professional students’ governing body.

Jamie Greig (left) congratulates Jack Ryan (right), the new GSS vice president.

Their efforts have not gone unnoticed by the Graduate School. Dixie L. Thompson, Vice Provost and Dean of the Graduate School notes that Bedford and Greig have “provided invaluable service to the university through their work on Graduate Council and various search committees.” And they have been valued partners in efforts such as graduate student orientations and Graduate and Professional Student Appreciation Week.

As Bedford and Greig return their full attention back to their studies, Sulyok and Ryan will assume their new roles and get to work. Some of their goals for the next year will be to restructure the GSS Travel Awards deadlines to enable travel throughout the year, work to eliminate differences between in- and out-of-state tuition and fees for those establishing Tennessee residency, increase communication between GSS and the departments, and build upon prior GSS success while continuously evaluating existing programs. And most of all, they intend to continue to advocate loudly and effectively for graduate student interests.

Both Dean Thompson and the Graduate School look forward to working with these leaders in the year ahead!

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