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The University of Tennessee, Knoxville, will give former Vice President and Nobel Peace Prize winner Al Gore an honorary doctorate at the Spring commencement exercise for the College of Arts and Sciences.

The ceremony will be held in the Thompson-Boling Arena and Assembly Center at 8:30 a.m., Friday, May 14.

Gore will receive an Honorary Doctor of Laws and Humane Letters in Ecology and Evolutionary Biology degree and address the graduates. Graduates and their guests are expected to fill the arena to capacity for the ceremony.

This ceremony is one of 14 to be held on campus during the week. Details about all events can be found at http://www.utk.edu/commencement/spring10/index.shtml.

Construction along Neyland Drive and the road closure of Phillip Fulmer Way will require that all attendees allot at least an additional 15 minutes of travel time.

To accommodate the large number of guests, free bus transportation will be available from the Agriculture Campus CFN1 parking lot and the G-7 parking garage located at the corner of Volunteer Boulevard and Andy Holt Avenue. Bus service will begin at 6:30 a.m. with shuttles running every five to seven minutes. Parking for the disabled will be available in the G-10 parking garage. For more information about shuttles and parking, visit http://www.utk.edu/commencement/spring10/parking/.

UT’s first priority is to accommodate the college’s graduates, their families and guests. Due to a tremendous response, we regret that we will be unable to accommodate admission of the general public.

The ceremony can be viewed via live feed in the University Center Auditorium and via the Web.

Nine commencement ceremonies can also be viewed on television. The ceremonies will be available on UTTV, or channel 65 for on-campus viewers and Comcast digital channel 194 for Comcast cable subscribers in the greater Knoxville area. Check local listings for details.

Procedures for all UT sporting events will be in place for the ceremony. All bags and purses are subject to search. Certain items also are prohibited inside the arena and cannot be stored at any arena gate. Those include weapons or knives of any kind, large bags or parcels, including backpacks and large purses. Diaper bags are allowed.

Due to possible obstruction of sight by attendees, signage larger than 8 ½ by 11 inches also is prohibited. Photography and videography throughout the ceremony are permitted.

NOTE TO MEMBERS OF THE MEDIA: Members of the media must arrive no later than 8 a.m. to set up prior to the ceremony. The media entrance to Thompson-Boling Arena will be under Pratt Pavilion.

Media parking will be available in the S-23 parking lot just across Lake Loudoun Boulevard from Pratt Pavilion.

All media representatives must register with UT’s Office of Media and Internal Relations by 5 p.m. Monday, May 10, to be admitted Friday morning. Call or e-mail Whitney Holmes at 865-974-5460 or wholmes7@utk.edu to provide the names of all attendees from your organization.

Because this is an academic ceremony, there will be restrictions related to filming and photography by the media on the arena floor. Accommodations will be made for all media organizations to ensure the best coverage possible.

Video Uplink/Transmission Information

For Knoxville media:

During the event, a live multi-camera feed will be made available in the microwave transmission room at Thompson-Boling Arena. This feed may be transmitted by local media who have transmission capabilities from the arena that normally are used for sporting events.

For statewide and national media:

After the event, from 1:15 to 2 p.m. ET on May 14, UT Video and Photography Services will uplink highlights from the event, which will consist of footage from the multi-camera feed taken at the event itself and is free for reuse by media outlets. Downlink information follows:

Friday, May 14
1:15 p.m. – 2 p.m. ET
Horizons 2 (Ku digital)
Transponder 9 Channel A
Downlink Frequency: 12026.5 H
FEC – 3/4
Symbol Rate – 6.1113
Date Rate – 8.4480
Trouble numbers: 865-974-5069/865-974-2680

C O N T A C T:

Whitney Holmes (865-974-5460 or 865-235-3302 or wholmes7@utk.edu)

Karen Collins (865-974-5186 or 865-216-6862 or karen.collins@tennessee.edu)