Chancellor Davenport Takes Over

Beverly Davenport took office Feb. 15 as the eighth chancellor of UT Knoxville. She spent her first few days meeting with faculty, staff, students and friends of the university. “I love seeing the students because they are really why we are here,” she says. “The students will lead us—their inspiration, their energy and their enthusiasm.”

The Bowling Green, Kentucky, native came to UT from the University of Cincinnati, where she was interim president and served as senior vice president for academic affairs and provost for three years. Previously, Davenport was vice provost for faculty affairs at Purdue University, dean of social sciences at the University of Kansas and chair of the department of communication at the University of Kentucky.

She has authored more than 100 papers and published three books on work life issues and workplace civility.

She succeeded Jimmy G. Cheek, who returned to the faculty after serving as chancellor since 2009.

It’s Elemental: Tennessine Added to Periodic Table

Robert Grzywacz
Robert Grzywacz

The newest element on chemistry’s periodic table honors Tennessee. Hence the name, Tennessine.

Robert Grzywacz, director of the UT-Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL) Joint Institute for Nuclear Physics and Applications and a physics professor at UT Knoxville, was involved in discovering this new element, a halogen.

He helped develop a process to measure decay of nuclear materials that helped prove the element’s existence. UT, ORNL and Vanderbilt University partnered in the discovery of Tennessine, which joins Californium as the only other element named for a state. Given that Tennessee got its name from the Cherokee village of Tanasi, Tennessine is also the first element whose name reflects Native American roots.

Learn more about the discovery at

Stokely Hall Opens

Stokely Hall seen here on March 2, 2017. (Rae Sturm / University of Tennessee)
Stokely Hall is located on the corner of Lake Loudoun and Volunteer Blvds.

Spring semester brought the opening of the Stokely Hall, the third new UT Knoxville residence hall to open this academic year. Located at the corner of Lake Loudoun and Volunteer boulevards, it houses 684 students.

Named for the Stokely family to honor their long commitment to UT, the building is on the site of the former Gibbs Hall and the William B. Stokely Athletics Center.

Four consecutive generations of Stokelys have graduated from UT, beginning in 1895 with William Burnett Stokely Sr., who was captain of the Volunteers football team.

The new residence hall offers a new dining concept—the Fresh Food Company, where all food is prepared to order in front of the customer. The dining hall is open to students, faculty, staff and visitors.