Skip to content Skip to main navigation Report an accessibility issue

In the News: March 2022

The A&S in the News section of Dialogue features media mentions of college faculty, staff, students, and alumni in local, regional, and national news outlets. Items are sources from the UT News Roundup and other sources. If you have an item to include in this monthly news roundup, please send it via email the college communications office at

Coverage of Russian Invasion of Ukraine

WATE-TV: Russia-Ukraine: UT professor shares what to know as Russia attacks Ukraine

With news of Russian tanks rolling through Ukrainian streets today, many Americans are wondering how events got to this point. University of Tennessee political science professor Gary Uzonyi spoke with WATE 6 about things the average person should know about the invasion and how it got to this point.

WBIR-TV: “We are in Cold War 2” | UT political science professors speak on Russian invasion of Ukraine

University of Tennessee professor of political science Dr. Michael Fitzgerald warned people that the invasion could have longstanding consequences as leaders begin sanctions against Russia and respond to the invasion with threats of further escalation.

Compass Knox: Ukraine Under Assault

“Putin has been planning for many, many years to strengthen Russia’s position on the world stage,” said Krista Wiegand, director of the Global Security Program at the Howard H. Baker Jr. Center for Public Policy at the University of Tennessee. “Putin wants to be a major player again and has said so publicly.”

WATE: University of Tennessee experts examine crisis in Ukraine

There was hardly an empty seat Tuesday inside the Toyota Auditorium at the Howard H. Baker Jr. Center for Public Policy for the “What to Know About the Russia-Ukraine Crisis” lecture. “People are a little skeptical how this conflict is going to turn out,” said Global Security Program Director Krista Wiegand. “There’s a lot of confusion of Russia’s capabilities.” Experts from UT were hoping to clear up some of the confusion.

A&S Media Mentions

SeedWorld: Bringing the Corpse Flower Back to Life

For some reason, 2021 was a banner year for corpse flower blooms across the United States. Rotty Top, UT’s corpse flower on display in the Hesler Biology Building, is included in this article looking at these smelly, but stunning plants.

Mountain Top News: Filmmaker Visits Highland Elementary

Academy Award-nominated documentary filmmaker Elaine McMillion Sheldon visited Highland Elementary School for her next film, King Coal, which explores future opportunities for young Appalachians as a result of the declining coal industry.

NASA Landsat Science: Meet Qiusheng Wu, Geospatial Community Contributor

Landsat Science team profiled Professor Qiusheng Wu on their webpage to show his contributions toward open science and reproducible research with satellite imagery.

Washington Post: Behind U.S. foreign policy toward Venezuela are century-old racist tropes

Tim Gill, assistant professor of sociology, penned a prospective about understanding the history as a key piece of the United States’ attempts to reengage Venezuela due to Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.

The Drew Barrymore Show: Drew Surprises Knoxville Teacher with $50k

Drew had the pleasure of honoring Melody Hawkins, a teacher from Knoxville, Tennessee, who goes above and beyond for her students. She received her bachelors degree in biological sciences from UT.

Oak Ridge Today: Oak Ridge names first honorary poet laureate

The City of Oak Ridge has named Erin Elizabeth Smith, a distinguished lecturer in the UT Department of English, as its first honorary poet laureate. Smith will serve in this role for a two-year period, a press release said.

WVLT:  UT announces new director for Pride of the Southland Marching Band

The University of Tennessee School of Music has announced who will become the next director for the Pride of the Southland Marching Band. Associate Professor of Music Education and Associate Director of Bands, Dr. Michael Stewart, will take the baton next season.

WBIR:  Laugh and think | Regional editorial comics on display at UT Downtown Gallery

They say a picture is worth a thousand words. So what about a comic?

Step into the world of regional newspaper comics at the University of Tennessee’s newest downtown gallery exhibit called “Point of View,” featuring names and topics you’ll probably remember.

Daily Beacon:  UT exhibits, events highlight comics as art across the last century

The Art and Architecture Building is presenting an exhibit in the Ewing Art Gallery titled “A Serious Look at the Funnies: 100 Years of Comics,” which mostly shows the work of cartoonist, publisher and comicstorian, Denis Kitchen. The exhibit will be shown through Feb. 28.

WBIR: ‘Maus’ author hosting virtual lecture with UT Knoxville after McMinn Co. Schools banned his book

The author of the Pulitzer-winning Holocaust graphic novel “Maus” is hosting a virtual lecture with the University of Tennessee in Knoxville on Saturday.

News Sentinel: ‘Superhero’ Austin-East educator gets surprise award on ‘Drew Barrymore Show’

On a soundstage in New York, Knoxville teacher Melody Hawkins waited to appear on the “Drew Barrymore Show” but the reason why she was on the show was a true mystery. Barrymore had a surprise in store. In an episode that aired nationwide Tuesday, Hawkins learned she was National University’s Teacher of the Year for 2021. The prestigious award recognizes educators who use social emotional learning in the classroom.