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John D. Tickle

The university will host a dedication ceremony today for the Tickle College of Engineering in honor of its namesake, John D. Tickle.

The celebration will take place in the quad near Perkins and Ferris Halls and will include music, food, and a limited number of T-shirts with the college’s new logo.

It is free and open to the public.

Members of the college and campus communities will speak, and there will be a short presentation honoring Tickle, a 1965 industrial engineering graduate of the college.

Tickle has contributed significantly to his alma mater, with the John D. Tickle Engineering Building, the John and Ann Tickle Small Animal Hospital, and the John and Ann Tickle Athletic Development Suite in the Brenda Lawson Athletic Center also bearing the family name.

His most recent transformative support will allow the college to create a graduate fellowship to fund doctoral students across all of its academic programs; professorships to help the college recognize, recruit and, retain faculty members; and the addition of a team of professional advisors to help students recognize their academic goals. All of those programs will bear his name.

For that support, the UT Board of Trustees voted at its fall meeting to name the College of Engineering in his honor, just the second time in the university’s 222-year history that a college has been so named.

“John has been a key partner in the recent growth that we have had, and his support will ensure that continued success for our college, students, and state in the decades to come,” said Tickle College of Engineering Dean Wayne Davis. “His support means a lot to me, both as dean and as an alumnus of the college.”

That type of funding has helped the college experience monumental growth in the past decade. In that time it has increased enrollment by 1,600 students, or roughly 60 percent; added 30 world-renowned faculty; and nearly doubled its annual research funding to almost $70 million.

The college has risen more than 10 spots among public institutions to become the country’s 32nd- and 36th-ranked undergraduate and graduate engineering schools, respectively, in U.S. News and World Report’s annual rankings.

The quality of incoming students also has surged; current freshmen have an average GPA of 4.0 and math ACT score of more than 30.

For information on Tickle and the college that bears his name, click here

David Goddard (865-974-0683,