First Commencement Celebrated

On May 7, 155 students became the first UT Southern graduates. As the students walked across the stage individually, they were congratulated by then-Chancellor Mark La Branche and UT System President Randy Boyd.

Boyd touted the importance of UT Southern’s connection to others.

“Surround yourself with great people; it is one of the most important keys to success. The support of the entire UT System is an invaluable asset to UT Southern. Surely such accomplishments as we have seen in the last year could not have been achieved alone,” he says.

As he wrapped up his remarks, Boyd challenged the graduates to “live a life that leaves the world a better place than you found it.”

La Branche Retires

Mark La Branche retired from his role as UT Southern’s chancellor, effective June 30.

La Branche, who became the inaugural chancellor of UT Southern after the acquisition of Martin Methodist College (MMC) by the UT System, provided stability for the UT Southern community throughout its transition to a public university.

“The creation of UT Southern simply could not have happened without Mark’s vision and focus on what’s best for the university and the people of the region,” says UT System President Randy Boyd. “Myself, the UT System and the state of Tennessee owe him an incredible debt of gratitude.”

Serving as special assistant to Boyd before his full retirement, La Branche will author a book on the merger of MMC with UT that will serve as a historical reference for UT and a guide for universities around the country on successfully merging a small liberal arts college with a large public university system.

The UT System will name an interim chancellor in mid-June and begin scouting for the next chancellor later this year.

UT Southern Student to Serve on UT Board of Trustees

Hayden Galloway and Mark La Branche, former UT Southern chancellor.
Hayden Galloway and Mark La Branche, former UT Southern chancellor.

Hayden Galloway will serve as the student member on the UT Board of Trustees for the 2022-23 academic year.

Galloway served with distinction as the president of the UT Southern Student Government Association. She maintained a 3.87 grade-point average in her premed studies and is a member of the national championship women’s soccer team.

Galloway is from Lawrenceburg and credits her involvement in 4-H programs for her desire and the ability to lead. She plans to complete her studies at UT Southern and attend the University of Tennessee Health Science Center for medical school in the future.