The People’s College

In 1859, US Representative Justin Morrill helped shape the future of Tennessee and the rest of the nation with the idea that higher education should be available to everyone.


On January 4, 1961, Theotis Robinson Jr. arrived on campus as an undergraduate student. It was his application and subsequent meetings with UT administrators, including President Andy Holt, that led to the change in the admissions policy that barred black undergraduate students.

UT Integrates

The climax of Southern university desegregation came in the early 1960s with rancorous confrontations and even riots on some campuses of the Deep South. The white leadership of the University of Tennessee was reluctant, but its path to racial integration was quieter and less acrimonious.

A Beacon Shining Bright

On September 10, 1794, at the edge of the American frontier, a spark of an idea was kindled. That flame has grown into a beacon that continues to grow stronger.

Teaching the Teachers

Two centuries ago, UT was called East Tennessee College, but even in those days, its educational scope was much broader than the region it called home.