Student Life creates transformative learning experiences for students to develop their sense of self and their individual strengths to become better students, leaders, and professionals. Typically occurring during a training, program, event, or other types of involvement opportunities, transformational experiences provide spaces for students to learn more about themselves and the world around them, and see and understand others from a new perspective. These values are critical to developing and offering environments for students to practice their skills and become effective leaders prior to graduation.
Expanded Health and Safety Programming for Greek-Letter Organization Members
In partnership with the Center for Health Education and Wellness, Student Conduct and Community Standards, Title IX, and the Office of the Dean of Students, the Office of Sorority and Fraternity Life (OSFL) offered more than 108 programs throughout the year that focused on the health and safety of members, a 980 percent increase from programs offered in 2020–21. These programs covered topics such as alcohol use, drug use, sexual misconduct, hazing, and mental health.
“I feel more comfortable as a minority on campus because people are educating themselves about diversity issues and micro-behaviors and aggressions.”
—student participant of fall 2021 Health and Safety Summit
OSFL continued the use of the New Member Health and Safety Module, offered online through Canvas, for prospective Interfraternity Council and Panhellenic members and created and introduced the New Member Health and Safety Module for National Pan-Hellenic Council and Multicultural Greek Council new members this past spring.
The programming also included the annual Health and Safety Summit for Greek-letter organization members. The summit equips organization leaders with tools and skills focused on prevention models, problem identification, response, self-reporting, accountability, and social event management strategies. After receiving feedback from student participants, the staff re-examined the needs of how historically under-represented students are usually supported in these spaces. As a result, the summit collaborated with both the Office of Diversity and Engagement, as well as the bias coordinator through the Office of the Dean of Students, to provide educational programming regarding diversity equity and inclusion efforts and how those impact the health and safety of members.
Overall, 12,784 students participated in health and safety programs during 2021–22, which is a 2,431 percent increase from the 505 students in 2020–21.
2,412 students participated in diversity, equity, and inclusion educational programming a 147% increase from 975 total students in 2020–21.
Offering Real-World Experiences
The Office of Student Media provides administrative coordination and support for four editorially independent student media organizations at the University of Tennessee.
“In just 8 months of working as a writer, I have grown to love the atmosphere of the Daily Beacon and the people who make it run. I am so excited to continue my work this year as news editor.”
—Autumn Hall, Daily Beacon news editor
The Daily Beacon, Phoenix Literary Arts Magazine, Lumos Media Services, and Honey magazine. The office staff serves as expert advisors to the students who contribute to publications and allow for students to prepare for job opportunities after their time at UT.
The number of student employees that are involved with Student Media has been on a steady increase, with 98 students employed in 2021–22 for student-run Daily Beacon newspaper specifically. Tasks for the student team include creating content, conducting interviews, editing, photography, and laying out the paper for print. The Daily Beacon also offers students an opportunity to familiarize themselves with digital journalism by utilizing utdailybeacon.com.
During the fall 2021 semester, The Daily Beacon welcomed Beacon alumni John Jackson Miller and Paul Finebaum to share their own histories from undergrad to the present, and offered advice to students as they answered questions. Sports Editor Josh Lane was also invited to join Finebaum on The Paul Finebaum Show ahead of the homecoming game against the Georgia Bulldogs.
“The Lumos team was professional, responsive and took the time to understand our vision for the video. They advised us on the best time of day to film, lighting, staging and placement. We are extremely happy with the final product and will use Lumos again.”
—Mary Leslie Patterson, Aramark marketing director
Similarly, Lumos Media Services also provides the opportunity for students to familiarize themselves with video and digital media production. Lumos is structured as a client-based commercial video production operation and serves both on- and off-campus clients. Lumos Media Services provides students with leadership opportunities, client relations and management experience, and learning to meet deadlines. In 2021–22, the student-run Lumos team produced 40 videos from conception to completion.
1,000 copies of Honey magazine were distributed in the first print edition in October 2021.