Be One UT

Be One UT

To be successful, organizations need four things—a compelling mission that is both inspiring and aspiring; a strategy to get there; great people; and a set of values that define it and its culture. Values should underscore the “why” in what it does and provide guidance day in and day out.

Last year we traveled the state and talked to our alumni, faculty, staff, students and administrators on each campus. We asked them to describe the traits that make UT what it is—and what it should be. We used their feedback to come up with a list of seven values that fit into a memorable acronym: Be One UT.

B – Bold and Impactful: Serving the state by tackling grand challenges

E – Embrace Diversity: Respecting our individual and organizational uniqueness that makes us stronger


O – Optimistic and Visionary: Empowering courageous leadership

N – Nimble and Innovative: Inspiring creative and transformational action

E – Excel in All We Do: Committing to continuous improvement and outstanding performance


U – United and Connected: Collaborating internally and externally for greater collective impact

T – Transparent and Trusted: Fostering integrity through openness, accountability and stewardship

Throughout these pages, you will read examples of our alumni, faculty and students exemplifying these values. From confronting and addressing some of the most painful times in our history to aiding our nation during a global pandemic, UT takes bold action to live our values each day.

The UT System has come together to dig deep and redefine our values, to remember our mission of serving every Tennessean and improve life in our great state and far beyond. We remain excited and optimistic about continuing our work to make this the greatest decade in UT history.

Randy Boyd, Knoxville ’79