Mailbag: Class Notes

Lots of Alumnus mail to sort through these days. Here are some items we received: Jay Thornton (Knoxville ’90) was recognized among Top Lawyers by the 2014 South Florida Legal Guide. Thornton specializes in employment and labor, banking and finance, … Continue reading Mailbag: Class Notes

Ovince Saint Preux

Ready for a real knockout? The Tennessee Alumnus spring 2014 issue cover story is about Ovince Saint Preux, a former Vols football player who now fights in the Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC). If you are not familiar with UFC, it is the highest level of mixed martial arts fighting, a combination of kickboxing, Judo and moves you might recognize from Greco-Roman wrestling. In February 2013, we started talking about doing a story in the Alumnus. I have a big folder of story ideas. At some point, I stashed an article from 2011 about Ovince. I remembered his name (who could … Continue reading Ovince Saint Preux

Future of Higher Ed

Your senior year of college should be a year of “lasts,” right? Your last football game as a student. Your last semester being able to roll out of bed at noon and walk to your first class. Your last time having to stay up all night studying for an exam. For me, there has been one “first” – my first online class.
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Welcome to Martin

If you want to learn about the great things happening at the University of Tennessee, go to a Board of Trustees meeting. Certainly, much of the meeting involves dealing with policies and reports, but it is also an opportunity for … Continue reading Welcome to Martin

Deadlines, Deadlines, Deadlines

This is the part of the magazine process that I like to call “Editor Freakout.” Today is the deadline for copy to be turned in for our spring issue, which comes out in April. I am really excited about the issue. But it’s usually around this time in the process when there are so many balls in the air, that I start freaking out about whether everything will come together. It always does. I am a worrier, though, so it really gets me in a knot to have so many things still unknown. There are 19 articles assigned for the … Continue reading Deadlines, Deadlines, Deadlines

Mojdeh Dehghan and Daranee Versluis

Made by UT Hands

At least two years ago, freelance writer David Brill approached the magazine about doing a story on the inventions created by UT faculty. At the time, it sounded like a good idea but a daunting project. How would we decide … Continue reading Made by UT Hands

We Back Pat!

For We Back Pat week (Jan. 19-26), here is a post in honor of Pat Summitt. A couple of issues ago, we had a nice piece about Pat written by Sally Jenkins. That story was based on the book Sum … Continue reading We Back Pat!

Alumnus Mailbag: Update on John Coyne

The Alumnus email account fills up pretty quickly with press releases and story pitches about alumni. I plan to share as many of those as I can on this blog. The magazine does not have class notes, so I encourage people who want to submit an item that would be considered a class note to their individual campus alumni magazines. You can see these publications listed on the UT Alumni Association website when you click under “news.” Here’s a “class note” item I received from Roetzel & Andress law firm in Akron, Ohio: John M. Coyne, III (1994 J.D. Cleveland-Marshall College of Law; 1994 … Continue reading Alumnus Mailbag: Update on John Coyne

Operation Tiger

  This issue’s special report is called “Uncovering Secrets,” and it’s about a man who survived Operation Tiger in World War II and then spent much of the rest of his retirement researching the incident. I am not a World War II scholar, but my Dad is big into the history of the war. I have seen film footage of the Battle of the Bulge and the landing at Normandy on D-Day umpteen times, but I had never heard of Operation Tiger.   Now-retired editor Diane Ballard wrote this story about a collection of research given to UT Knoxville’s Center … Continue reading Operation Tiger

Visit to UTopics

Many magazines have sections devoted to news briefs. In the Alumnus, it’s called UTopics. A couple of issues ago we decided to assign a separate page for each campus and the Institute of Agriculture and the UT System to better organize it and demonstrate the “system-ness” of the UT System. Prior to that, UTopics was more of a hodgepodge of briefs in no particular order. In the winter issue, we went a step further to try to better define each page as separate with distinctive colors for each campus and a map pinpointing the campus in the state. New for the … Continue reading Visit to UTopics

Alumnus Mailbag: From Albert King

This letter to the editor comes from Albert King, who earned a bachelor’s degree in engineering at UT Knoxville in 1960: The Fall 1991 issue included an article on the housing of veterans in 1946. Current day changes to the sites on the east side of “The Hill” and the property across from the former Tyson Jr. High School are astounding. I was a student at Tyson in the late 40s and remember the trailers vividly. I suggest an updated article photographically showing the transition of these sites. Former students and longer term residents of Knoxville would greatly appreciate a … Continue reading Alumnus Mailbag: From Albert King

Winter 2014

Overall, I’m proud of the winter 2014 issue. In the next several posts, I will go into more detail about each article. Planning for this issue really got going in March 2013, when got an email from Rob Heller, a photojournalism professor in the UT Knoxville College of Communication and Information Science, about the 20th anniversary of a project called “Eyes on LaFollette.” Our fall 2013 issue was already full, so I thought this would be a good feature for the winter 2014 issue. I was not yet sure what the cover story would be. As the fall issue went into … Continue reading Winter 2014

Coming Together

Some people ask me how I get ideas for the magazine. Well, story ideas are pretty easy to come by since there are so many UT alumni doing interesting things. Also, there are fascinating research and teaching projects on all the campuses. The hard part is deciding what not to put in the magazine. If you are interested in how a publication comes together, then I can briefly explain the process for the Alumnus. Planning is a constant process. I keep a list of contents for the next two to three issues, and that list changes as needed to drop or add stories. … Continue reading Coming Together