Diverse as One

Randy Boyd tells a joke on a stage as two seated men laugh

Featured Image: UT President Randy Boyd laughs with TVA President and CEO Jeff Lyash, ORNL Director Thomas Zacharia and Great Smoky Mountains National Park Superintendent Cassius Cash during the Mayors’ Leadership Luncheon in Knoxville. Photo by Sam Thomas

Diverse but together—two words that combined bring new opportunities. Our community and nation have talked about diversity as we experience new ways to come together.

As the president of the University of Tennessee System, one of my main goals is to make the university a strong and welcoming community for everyone. What makes a university great are its people—students, faculty, staff—and the opportunities to impact the future. Our experiences and our differences make us stronger together than we could ever be separately.

Our campuses are fortunate to have students, faculty, staff and alumni with different backgrounds and life experiences. These differences help us learn and grow. At UT, we are committed to creating an environment that helps every member of our community feel valued, respected and welcomed on our campuses.

In helping to create this environment, our UT leadership teams are actively working on approaches that meet the needs of their communities. UT Knoxville is developing action plans for a campus where everyone is respected, valued and included. At UT Chattanooga, unique events are being planned which are aimed at having critical conversations around equity and inclusion. The UT Health Science Center has created a Diversity Certificate Program to connect participants to the foundational concepts of diversity and inclusion. These are just a few examples of how we are defining our “OneUT” culture.

In these pages, you will read some of the incredible and diverse experiences of individuals who are part of the University of Tennessee family. There are lessons to learn from all of them.

Together can we make UT the best it can be on our way to the greatest decade ever. I hope you’ll join me in that effort.

Randy Boyd, Knoxville ’79