Featured photo: This artistic rendering of UT Martin’s TEST Hub shows potential uses of space for engineering and other projects. The facility is a joint effort by UT Martin, Tennessee Colleges of Applied Technology and Dyersburg State Community College to support and expand workforce and economic development in rural Northwest Tennessee.
The Tennessee General Assembly approved $18 million in a budget appropriations amendment to completely fund UT Martin’s proposed Tennessee Entrepreneurial Science and Technology (TEST) Hub. Once completed, the TEST Hub will provide hands-on manufacturing engineering education and a regional innovation hub that will support workforce and economic development for future generations. Sen. John Stevens (R-Huntingdon, Martin ’96), Sen. Ken Yager (R-Kingston, Martin ’69, ’72), House Majority Leader William Lamberth (R-Portland) and Rep. Tandy Darby (R-Greenfield, Martin ’96) filed the budget item and advocated for the project.
Captain’s Challenge Sets New Records
The university’s eighth annual Captain’s Challenge 24-hour fundraiser held April 6 set new records of $470,000 raised and approximately 1,400 gifts. This year’s theme was based on the popular 1986 film “Ferris Bueller’s Day Off” and engaged the record number of donors with “Captain’s Challenge—Captain Skyhawk’s Day Off.”
Jackie Johnson, assistant vice chancellor for alumni relations and annual giving, credited the fundraising success to alumni and friends who have increased support each year.
“Through Captain’s Challenge, it’s evident the level of care our alumni have in regard to their alma mater,” she says.
Rodeo Coach Retires
John Luthi retired this year after coaching the UT Martin rodeo team for 25 years. He has led the only collegiate rodeo program in Tennessee to 19 Ozark Region championships (14 men’s, five women’s) and a national men’s team championship in 2014. Under Luthi’s leadership, the annual UT Martin Spring College Rodeo has been spotlighted as “Rodeo of the Year” by the Ozark Region 13 times in 14 years.
UTM Wins OVC Championships in Golf and Beach Volleyball
The Skyhawks added to a list of 2021-22 successes with Ohio Valley Conference championships in golf and beach volleyball. The beach volleyball tournament championship was the first for UTM. The Skyhawks claimed regular-season titles last fall in football and soccer. The rodeo team also qualified for the 2022 College National Finals Rodeo in Casper, Wyoming, in June.