Staff Changes Announced for the Sewanee Football Program

Sewanee’s Department of Athletics announced today that Head Football Coach Travis Rundle is stepping down to accept a similar role at Albion College. A national search will begin immediately for the University of the South's 32nd head football coach, while Defensive Coordinator Joe Rodgers will serve as interim head coach during the transition process.

The Rt. Rev. Dr. Jake Owensby, T’97, elected Chancellor

The Rt. Rev. Dr. Jake Owensby, bishop of the Episcopal Diocese of Western Louisiana was elected the 26th chancellor of the University of the South by the Board of Trustees, succeeding the Rt. Rev. Robert Skirving, bishop of the Diocese of East Carolina.

Winter Convocation will be held on Jan. 20

The University’s Winter Convocation will be held at 4:30 p.m. on Friday, Jan. 20. Three honorary degrees will be presented, and new members will be inducted into the Order of the Gown. Dr. James E.K. Hildreth, president and chief executive officer of Meharry Medical College, community leader Bonita (Bonnie) G. McCardell, and Vice-Chancellor Emeritus John M. McCardell Jr. will be awarded honorary degrees. Dr. Hildreth will give the convocation address.

Sewanee to host a Truth, Racial Healing & Transformation (THRT) Campus Centers

The University of the South has been chosen by the American Association of Colleges and Universities (AAC&U) to host one of 16 new Truth, Racial Healing & Transformation (THRT) Campus Centers around the country. The new cohort of TRHT Campus Centers, announced Friday, Nov. 18 brings the total number to 71, including centers at Agnes Scott College, Bethel College, Brown University, Duke University, Millsaps College, Pepperdine University, and the University of Maryland, Baltimore.

University Chancellor Skirving Announces Intention to Step Down

In a Nov. 18 letter to the University of the South’s Board of Trustees, the Rt. Rev. Rob Skirving announced that he will be stepping down as the University’s chancellor to focus his energy and attention on the Diocese of East Carolina, where he serves as bishop. Skirving has served as chancellor since being elected to the position in 2018. In his letter, Skirving shared his intention to resign as soon as his replacement can be elected.

Poet Natasha Trethewey to give Haines Lecture

Natasha Trethewey will deliver the 29th Haines Lecture on Oct. 25 at 4:30 p.m. in Convocation Hall. She served two terms as the 19th Poet Laureate of the United States (2012-2014). She is the author of five collections of poetry, Monument (2018), which was longlisted for the 2018 National Book Award; Thrall (2012); Native Guard (2006), for which she was awarded the Pulitzer Prize, Bellocq’s Ophelia (2002); and Domestic Work (2000), which was selected by Rita Dove as the winner of the inaugural Cave Canem Poetry Prize for the best first book by an African American poet and won both the 2001 Mississippi Institute of Arts and Letters Book Prize and the 2001 Lillian Smith Award for Poetry.

Garrett Hongo to Receive 2022 Aiken Taylor Award

The Sewanee Review is pleased to announce that Garrett Hongo is the recipient of the 2022 Aiken Taylor Award for Modern American Poetry. In Garrett Hongo’s work there is often the numinous clarity that attends the greatest elegies. Such clarity springs not just from an abundance of human feeling but, as is the case in so many of Hongo’s poems, a seeker’s hope: that language, if it cannot save us, can at least act as a salve. That if we cannot unmake our pain, we can construct a vessel that makes it bearable.

TICUA President Claude Pressnell Jr. to give convocation address

Nationally recognized higher education advisor Claude Pressnell Jr. will be the convocation speaker and will receive an honorary degree. The Convocation, which will be held on Sept. 16 at 4:30 p.m. in All Saints’ Chapel, will include the induction of approximately 300 new members into the Order of the Gown. One of the highlights this year is the opportunity for family and friends to join and be a part of the induction outside on the University quadrangle at the moment new members receive the charge from Acting Vice-Chancellor Nancy Berner and wear their gowns for the first time. This indeed is one of Sewanee's most unique, enduring and distinct traditions.

Faculty promotions and tenure decisions

At its summer meeting, the University of the South Board of Regents formally approved promotion and tenure decisions for eleven faculty members. Eight newly tenured faculty members now hold the title of associate professor, effective July 1, 2022. Three faculty members have been promoted to full professor. Congratulations to all.

Dr. Mila Dragojevic Receives Fulbright Award

Sewanee Professor of Politics Mila Dragojević has received a U.S. Fulbright Scholar Program Award for the 2022-23 academic year from the U.S. Department of State and the Fulbright Foreign Scholarship Board. The award will allow Dragojević to spend the fall in Croatia conducting research on political leadership and conflict in the context of the Croatian Spring movement in 1971.

Congratulations Class of 2020 (finally!)

On May 14 & 15, the University of the South welcomed Vice-Chancellor Emeritus John McCardell and Class of 2020 back to the Mountain to celebrate their graduation weekend!

twenty-one members of the Class of 2020 were formally initiated in Phi Beta Kappa

Having earned membership two years ago, twenty-one members of the Class of 2020 were formally initiated in Phi Beta Kappa during a ceremony on May 14, 2022.

Fifteen members of the Class of 2022 were initiated into membership in Phi Beta Kappa

An initiation ceremony was held on Saturday, May 7 for members of the Class of 2022 who were elected to membership in Phi Beta Kappa.

Claire Smith, C’22, Wins Fulbright English Teaching Assistant Award

Claire Smith, C’22, was granted a Fulbright English Teaching Assistant award to spend the academic year 2022-23 in Morocco. The award will allow Smith to work at a secondary school in Morocco to be determined by that country’s government. Smith will be Sewanee’s 56th Fulbright recipient.

Commencement 2022

The May, the University of the South will celebrate commencement over two weekends to honor the graduates of the class 2022 and the class of 2020.

Two members of the Class of 2022 awarded Watson Fellowships

Olivier Mbabazi and Angus Pritchard, both C’22, have been awarded the prestigious Thomas J. Watson Fellowship for 2022-23. They bring the total of Sewanee's Watson Fellows to 53. Mbabazi and Pritchard join 40 other students, hailing from eight countries and 21 states, who were chosen this year as Watson Fellows.

Twelve members of the Class of 2022 were initiated into Phi Beta Kappa

An initiation ceremony was held on Wednesday, Feb. 9 for members of the Class of 2022 who have been elected to membership in Phi Beta Kappa.

Board of Regents appoint Nancy Berner acting vice-chancellor

In a Jan. 21 letter to campus, the Board of Regents announced the appointment of Nancy Berner as acting vice-chancellor. She will serve in that role until the 18th vice-chancellor is elected and takes office.

Winter Convocation features talk by Gen. Charles Bolden, induction of new OG members

The University held its Winter Convocation on Friday, Jan. 14. Approximately 75 new members were inducted into the Order of the Gown, and honorary degrees were awarded to retired Major General Charles F. Bolden Jr. and poet Nikki Giovanni. 


The University’s Winter Convocation will be held at 4:30 p.m. Friday, Jan. 14. Two honorary degrees will be presented, and approximately 75 new members will be inducted into the Order of the Gown.

Vice-Chancellor Reuben Brigety will resign effective Dec. 21

Vice-Chancellor Reuben Brigety has announced that he will be resigning in light of the duty he would feel to accept a nomination by President Joe Biden to serve as the U.S. ambassador to the Republic of South Africa. Recent news reports have suggested the nomination is forthcoming.

Klarke Stricklen, C’22, chosen as Rhodes Scholar

Sewanee senior Klarke Stricklen is one of 32 American students chosen as Rhodes Scholars for 2022, making her the 27th Rhodes Scholar from the University.

Undergrad research assists the Turtle Survival Alliance

Biology prof Kristen Cecala began working with the Kiawah Island Diamondback Terrapin Project as an undergraduate. Now she takes Sewanee students to participate in sampling and continue the work of monitoring diamondback terrapins—the only exclusively estuarine turtle in the U.S.

From Here to Equality authors to speak on campus

This fall, the Roberson Project has hosted a reading group and two panel discussions on the topic of reparations, leading up to a campus visit by two of today’s foremost authorities in the movement to pay reparations to the descendants of enslaved persons in the U.S. William A. Darity Jr. and A. Kirsten Mullen, authors of From Here to Equality: Reparations for Black Americans in the Twenty-first Century, will present their work and research to the Sewanee community on Thursday and Friday, Nov. 18 and 19.


The University has announced that Director of Tennis John Shackelford has been appointed Sewanee’s next director of athletics, effective Nov. 15. He succeeds Mark Webb, who recently announced his retirement. Shackelford led the men’s tennis program for 33 seasons, creating both a winning tradition at Sewanee and enduring relationships with generations of alumni.


A new report finds that voting among college students skyrocketed nationwide in 2020; at Sewanee, it was up 29% from 2016.

University Receives Grant for Inclusive Public Interest Technology

The University of the South receives grant funding for public interest technology, a vote of confidence to fuel inclusive practices. The $180,000 grant from New America will be used to expand Sewanee's DataLab, an intensive summer program that offered student interns computer coding training to allow them to solve data problems for local and regional organizations.

Series of Black reparations events sets the stage for campus visit by noted authors

This fall, the Roberson Project on Slavery, Race, and Reconciliation has hosted a reading group and two panel discussions on the topic of reparations. The events are in preparation for the Nov. 18 and 19 campus appearances of William A. Darity Jr. and Kirsten Mullen, authors of From Here to Equality: Reparations for Black Americans in the Twenty-First Century.


After more than a quarter-century of service to the University of the South, Athletic Director Mark Webb will retire effective Dec. 31. During his tenure, Sewanee students have enjoyed great success athletically and academically, and Sewanee Athletics has grown from 18 to 24 varsity sports.

Names and Places Committee announced

A new committee has been named to consider the names and stories behind buildings, monuments, and places on the Domain. Its work will support the Regents’ plan for evaluating the University’s past ties to the Confederacy.

Convocation kicks off Family Weekend

A Fall Convocation on Friday, Sept. 17, celebrated the induction of new members into the Order of the Gown during Family Weekend.

Eight members of the Class of 2022 elected to Phi Beta Kappa

An initiation ceremony was held on Saturday, Sept. 18, for members of the Class of 2022 who have been elected to membership in Phi Beta Kappa.

Installation Service Postponed

The University of the South has made the very difficult decision to postpone the service and events surrounding the installation of Sewanee’s 17th Vice-Chancellor Reuben E. Brigety II, originally scheduled for Oct. 5-8.

University to celebrate Family Weekend SEPT. 17-19

The University of the South will hold a Fall Convocation on Friday, Sept. 17, coinciding with Family Weekend. Conductor and recording artist JoAnn Falletta will be the convocation speaker and will receive an honorary degree. The Convocation will include the induction of approximately 340 new members into the Order of the Gown. 

Welcome to the Class of 2025!

Sewanee began welcoming new students to campus during the second week of August. International students were followed by Finding Your Place mentors and participants, student leaders, student-athletes, and PRE participants. Orientation for new students begins Saturday, Aug. 21, and classes begin in the College on Wednesday, Aug. 25.

Deborah Vaughn appointed vice president for University Relations

Vice-Chancellor Reuben Brigety has announced that Deborah Vaughn has been named vice president for University Relations. She comes to Sewanee from Augusta University, a research university and academic medical center.


Provost Nancy Berner has announced that Dr. Sibby Anderson-Thompkins will become the University’s first chief diversity officer, with the title of vice provost for diversity, equity, and inclusion. Anderson-Thompkins will begin her new role in August.

Sewanee DataLab aims to make a difference in communities

Students and faculty are on campus this summer for the first-ever Sewanee DataLab. Participants will study data analysis in a public interest context during the grant-funded eight-week program. The program tackles immediate social problems, using community partners' concrete projects and real-life data, while providing hands-on training for students, academics, and professionals. 


Provost Nancy Berner shared an update on the March incident in which a few spectators were reported to have harassed members of a visiting athletic team. An investigation has been completed.

Roberson Project introduces “Save Sewanee Black History” website and virtual archive

The Roberson Project on Slavery, Race, & Reconciliation will introduce its “Save Sewanee Black History” website and virtual archive on June 6. All are welcome to join in the celebration of this important and living achievement.


Dean of the College Terry Papillon has announced the appointment of Myles Elledge, C’85, as director of the University’s Babson Center for Global Commerce. Elledge will begin his new role at Sewanee on June 28, succeeding David Shipps, now the University’s vice president for economic development & community relations.

“Godspeed and open water” to the Class of 2021

To conclude an academic year like no other, Sewanee held a College Commencement like no other on Saturday, May 22. The 370 graduates from the College and their guests assembled on Hardee-McGee Field for the morning ceremony.


Nineteen members of the Class of 2021 have been elected to membership in Phi Beta Kappa, joining 19 classmates who were elected earlier in the academic year. An initiation ceremony was held in the sunshine in Guerry Garth on Friday, May 21. 


Alan Ramirez has been named associate provost and dean of admission and financial aid. He will begin his new role July 6. Ramirez is currently associate vice president and dean of admission at Austin College in Sherman, Texas. 


The University of the South's 2020-21 academic year comes to a close May 20-22 with the College's graduation weekend on the Mountain. Commencement will be held Saturday, May 22, for students from the College of Arts and Sciences. The Commencement ceremony will be live-streamed.

Findings by University archaeologist lead to new understanding of Russell Cave

A multi-year grant to Professor of Archaeology Sarah Sherwood is helping the National Park Service preserve one of the most significant archaeological sites in the Southeast. For more than 50 years, the Russell Cave site has been a rich source of information about some of the first inhabitants of the North American continent. Students are assisting with the project research.

Sewanee Review announces editors at large

The Sewanee Review has announced the appointment of Danielle Evans, Sidik Fofana, and Brandon Taylor as editors at large. The Review has been fortunate to repeatedly publish these groundbreaking writers under the current editorship. In their new roles, they will not only introduce new voices to the quarterly but also be in dialogue with the editor and staff about everything from aesthetics to the magazine’s editorial direction. Read more about these writers and their new roles at the Review

Retired Admiral James Stavridis to give 2021 commencement address

The University plans an in-person College commencement service on Saturday, May 22, for its Class of 2021. The ceremony for approximately 375 graduates will be held outdoors and a limited number of guests will attend. Retired Admiral James Stavridis will give the commencement address.

University begins implementation of DOJ grant to reduce sexual assault on campus

Noting that April is Sexual Assault Awareness Month, Vice-Chancellor Brigety announced that the University received a grant from the U.S. Department of Justice to reduce sexual assault on campus. New project director Maria Michonski will be dedicated to the work of the grant and the development of an effective prevention program.

Klarke Stricklen, C’22, selected as a 2021 Truman Scholar

Klarke Stricklen, C’22, an American Studies major and African American Studies minor, has been named one of only 62 new Truman Scholars. Chosen for their leadership potential, commitment to a career in public service, and academic excellence, Truman Scholars receive funding for graduate studies, leadership training, and internship and fellowship opportunities.

Alexa Fults, C’21, awarded prized fellowship in international relations

Alexa Fults, a senior politics major from Morrison, Tennessee, will spend next year with the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace as a James C. Gaither Junior Fellow.


Bramwell Atkins and Mandy Moe Pwint Tu, both C’21, have been awarded prestigious Thomas J. Watson Fellowships for 2021-22. Selected from colleges and universities across the United States, winners of the fellowship receive a stipend supporting a year of independent study and travel outside of the U.S. 

Sewanee celebrates Earth Month in April

Sustain Sewanee celebrates Earth Month with Saturday morning bird walks, music, discussions, wildflower hikes, a climate activism conference, a community clean-up, and more!

University Awarded Pro Bono Consulting To Advance Climate Project

Sewanee is one of 10 universities awarded pro bono consulting services to help advance climate projects. The university will use the technical support to update the campus sustainability plan.


The Sewanee campus is galvanized by March 13 incident involving hate speech, and vows to fight racism in all forms. Students have vehemently rejected the behavior that a few displayed last weekend.


Eleven members of the Class of 2021 have been elected to membership in Phi Beta Kappa, joining eight classmates who were elected in the fall semester. An initiation ceremony was held on Friday, March 12. 

Faculty members and vice-chancellor in the news

Members of the faculty recently have been published on topics as diverse as Horace’s lyric poems and the holy wells of Ireland.

Sewanee joins Liberal Arts Colleges Racial Equity Leadership Alliance (LACRELA)

The University of the South is one of more than 60 inaugural members of the Liberal Arts Colleges Racial Equity Leadership Alliance. Other member institutions include Amherst College, Davidson College, Oberlin College, and Washington and Lee University. The alliance will partner with the University of Southern California Race and Equity Center to offer workshops for faculty and staff and provide access to resources focused on racial equity solutions. 

Students return to campus for spring semester

College students are returning to campus during the last week of January for the start of the spring semester. Classes start Monday, Feb. 1.

O'Rourke to discuss new book on the Rhetoric of the Civil Rights Sit-Ins

Professor Sean O’Rourke and Lesli K. Pace will discuss their companion books Like Wildfire: The Rhetoric of the Civil Rights Sit-Ins and the forthcoming On Fire: Five Civil Rights Sit-Ins and the Rhetoric of Protest. Zoom event Jan. 7; registration required.


The Nashville Tennessean profiles the University’s efforts to become a more welcoming place for all. "We will spare no effort to ensure that there is ample space and a warm welcome for anyone who seeks its insights and who hungers for its inspiration," Vice-Chancellor Reuben Brigety says.

Recent graduates launch literary journal

Recent Sewanee graduates and English majors Sydney Leibfritz, Briana Wheeler, and Carlos Zayas-Pons, all C'20, have founded a new literary journal called Ample Remains.

Faculty take next steps to further diversity and inclusion in their teaching

To further an initiative toward innovations in teaching and mentoring, the Office of the Dean of the College announces the first round of grants to faculty members for work focusing on diversity, equity, and inclusion broadly considered.

New partnership and grant will fund internships, address rural public health challenges

The grant will allow Sewanee to develop a Sewanee Public Interest Data Analysis Institute, and to build data analytics and technological capacity to address public health challenges in underserved communities.

Sewanee’s Green Box Program keeps disposable to-go containers out of landfill

Sewanee Dining began using reusable to-go containers at the end of August when students couldn’t all be seated in McClurg Dining Hall due to COVID-19 protocols. The boxes are “checked out” and returned, and over a six-week period kept almost 34,000 single-use containers out of the landfill.

Leadership changes coming to Student Life

Leadership changes will occur at the end of the year in the Division of Student Life. Dean of Students W. Marichal Gentry, C’86, will leave his position and Nicole Noffsinger-Frazier, C’97, will move into her new role of associate provost for student life and dean of students.