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Humanities Center Announces Fellowship Winners


From left to right: Stephen Collins-Elliot, Mary Dzon, Kristina Gehrman, Anne-Hèlène Miller, Tore Olsson, and Jay Rubenstein.

The UT Humanities Center has announced its class of fellows for the 2015–16 academic year. The faculty and graduate student fellowship recipients will be afforded a full year in the Humanities Center to pursue their respective research projects.

“The humanities are crucial to our development as thoughtful citizens capable of thinking critically in an ever increasingly complex world,” said Thomas Heffernan, director of the Humanities Center. “Our knowledge of our historical traditions is an indispensable guide to an enlightened future.”
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UT Professor Receives Prestigious Award for Ocean Science Work

Karen LloydKaren Lloyd’s work with subsea floor mud and frozen Siberian soil has earned her an extraordinarily competitive award.

The assistant professor of microbiology at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville, has been selected as a 2015 Alfred P. Sloan Research Fellow in Ocean Sciences. The announcement was made today in a full-page advertisement in The New York Times and on

The awards involve nominations for the very best early-career scientists from the United States and Canada. Lloyd is one of eight to receive the recognition in ocean sciences. Thirty-nine past Sloan fellows have won Nobel Prizes later in their careers.
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Engineering Icon Burdette Has Professorship Named in Honor

An iconic member of the College of Engineering received a high honor recently as the Dr. Edwin G. Burdette Professorship Endowment was announced.

UT alumni Charley and Lynn Hodges established the endowment in honor of Burdette’s service and commitment to UT, in particular the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering and its students.

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UT Law Wins Best Brief at National Moot Court Competition in NYC

National Moot Court Competition in New York City.

UT Law students (from left) John Baxter, Kaitlyn Holland, and Jarrod Casteel hold the Harrison Tweed Bowl they won for the best brief at this year’s National Moot Court Competition in New York City.

The UT College of Law was awarded the Harrison Tweed Bowl for best brief at the 2015 National Moot Court Competition in New York City.

The award was a first for the College of Law, whose team competed in the finals against thirty other law school teams from around the country. The team’s members included John Baxter, Jarrod Casteel, and Kaitlyn Holland.

“What makes this all the more impressive is that the Tennessee team was composed of three second-year students,” said John Sobieski, the Lindsay Young Distinguished Professor of Law who co-advises the team with Joseph Cook, the Williford Gragg Distinguished Professor of Law. “Most of the other teams were exclusively or predominantly third-year law students.”

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Rethinking the Speed of Sound

The speed of sound might just be faster than originally thought, and Assistant Professor Andrew Steiner has revisited this boundary in “Sound velocity bound and neutron stars,” published in Physical Review Letters. Paulo Bedaque from the University of Maryland is co-author on the paper, which was selected by PRL as an Editor’s Suggestion: one of a few publications recommended each week both for the interesting scientific results presented and successful communication across fields.

The paper describes how Steiner and Bedaque used the speed of sound to investigate the mysteries of matter at high density: one of the outstanding problems in nuclear and astrophysics. As Steiner explained, “the basic motivation [for looking at high-density matter] is that examining extreme forms of matter often gives us insight into what’s going on inside matter on earth. This is generally true: physicists are always looking at the hottest, coldest, densest, spinningest, lightest, heaviest, slowest, fastest, stickiest, or slipperiest things in order to try to figure out how stuff works.”

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