Since its inception more than 165 years ago, the University of Tennessee Alumni Association has been known for its outstanding service to its more than 370,000 members worldwide. By completing at least 24 semester hours (or their equivalent) at a UT campus, you are a member of the UTAA. Membership is free!
As we continue to grow, the purpose of the UTAA remains clear:
- To ensure representation of members (active and inactive).
- To augment university revenues.
- To strengthen the faculty.
- To encourage excellence in teaching, research and service.
Please visit UTAA Connect often and contact us with your ideas, suggestions, and biographical updates.
Download the UTAA bylaws (pdf) »
History of the UTAA
The Tennessee Alumni Association actually began in 1836, making it one of the oldest alumni associations in the country. From its humble beginning of bringing together grads from Blount College, and its successor, East Tennessee College, the association has grown to one that now serves more than 370,000 former students who have studied in Chattanooga, Knoxville, Martin, Memphis and Tullahoma. Below are a few key dates in the history of the association.
||The first recorded meeting of alumni took place, including graduates of Blount College and East Tennessee College
|| Alumni of East Tennessee University adopted the Alumni Association’s first constitution and by-laws
||The Tennessee General Assembly officially changed the name of East Tennessee University to the University of Tennessee.
||Alumni Association members work closely with the Board of Trustees to lobby the General Assembly and eventually acquire the first state appropriation for the university
||Nine alumni clubs, or chapters, were formed in Tennessee, with one out-of-state club created in Washington, D.C.
||The first issue of an alumni newsletter, the Tennessee Alumnus, was printed.
||The Alumni Association establishes a scholarship program and awards 6 scholarships, valued at $100 each, to UT students
||Dues program was discontinued; all grads automatically considered members of the alumni association and given the opportunity to support UT by making a contribution to the annual fund
||Alumni Association membership surpasses 100,000
||As UT Chattanooga joins the UT System, the Alumni Association expands to current structure that includes grads from all campuses.
||Madge Harrison becomes the first woman to serve as President of the UT National Alumni Association
||The annual fund, known as the Annual Giving Program, surpasses the $1 million mark in yearly contributions from alumni and friends
||The Alumni Association celebrates its 150th year of existence
||Alumni Association membership surpasses 200,000
||UT National Alumni Association enters into a partnership with First USA to offer an affinity card to all University of Tennessee graduates
||Spruell Driver, Jr. becomes the first African-American to serve as President of the UT National Alumni Association
||Alumni Association membership surpasses 300,000
||The Alumni Association begins its first-ever strategic planning process.
||On July 1, the Alumni Association along with the newly created 32-member Board of Governors moves under the UT Foundation, Inc.