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UT Knoxville’s Advisory Board met Wednesday to review the proposed budget for fiscal year 2020, receive an update on admissions, and recognize outgoing and incoming student representatives.

At the beginning of the meeting, the advisory board approved minutes from the March 20 meeting; presented Ovi Kabir, the first student member representative appointed to serve on the board, a plaque in recognition of his service to the advisory board; and introduced Johnelle Simpson, a graduate student in the College of Law, as the new student representative for FY 2020. His term will begin July 1.

The advisory board also reviewed a proposed budget for FY 2020 presented by Senior Vice Chancellor for Finance and Administration Chris Cimino, which they approved unanimously. The proposed operating budget is balanced and within available resources. Interim Chancellor Wayne T. Davis will submit the advisory board’s recommendation to UT System Interim President Randy Boyd no later than May 22.

Provost and Senior Vice Chancellor David Manderscheid delivered an update on the university’s plan to grow its undergraduate enrollment. The last item of business was a campus master plan presentation by Cimino, which included the status of current and planned construction projects.

Public members of the advisory board are board chair John Tickle of Bristol, Alexia Poe and Tom Smith of Nashville, and Syreeta Vaughn and Tim Williams of Knoxville. The Faculty Senate appointee is Louis J. Gross, Chancellor’s Professor and Distinguished Professor of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology. The current student appointee is Ovi Kabir, graduating political science major.

Meeting materials and the archived webcast are available on the chancellor’s website.

The advisory board’s next meeting is set for 10 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. October 11. Subsequent meetings will be held March 4 and May 13, 2020.

The UT FOCUS Act, passed by the Tennessee General Assembly in April 2018, created an advisory board for each UT campus. The boards are charged with submitting recommendations to the UT System Board of Trustees on campus-level strategic plans, operating budgets, and tuition.


Tyra Haag (865-974-5460,