UT Martin reentry taskforce appointed

A reentry task force has been appointed by Dr. Keith Carver, University of Tennessee at Martin chancellor, to recommend processes for moving the university forward amid the COVID-19 crisis.

The pandemic caused the university to complete spring semester classes online, and Maymester and summer semester classes will continue online. Decisions are pending for the resumption of events and activities, as well as how fall classes will be conducted.

“This is a broad-based task force that’s following the evolving coronavirus situation and the potential scenarios that could develop as we look to fully reopen the university,” Carver said.

The task force is divided into subcommittees that will forward recommendations for consideration by the university’s senior leadership team.

The task force will consider possible scenarios, including fully opening the university in August, a delayed opening with an online start to fall semester and a physical return mid-semester. Also, being considered is a completely online operation. Carver charged the task force to consider the following when making recommendations: teaching and student success, residence halls and public gathering places, research, employee safety, visitors, outreach and programs, and infrastructure and processes.

“I’m pleased with the university’s response to this unprecedented situation,” Carver said. “I’m especially impressed how our faculty and students adjusted quickly to the online learning environment. We’ll persevere together and emerge stronger on the other side of this crisis.”

Members of the task force are:

Chairs: Philip Smartt, Faculty/Agriculture; Shannon Deal, Student Health and Counseling.

Advisers to the Chairs:   Holly Rowan, emergency management protocols; Laura Foltz, budget considerations and assignments.


  • John Blue, Student Affairs/Boling University Center
  • Emalee Buttrey, Faculty/Agriculture
  • Ashley Bynum, Intercollegiate Athletics
  • David Carithers, Faculty/English Department Chair
  • Kiara Castleman, Academic Records
  • Bonnie Daniel, Information Technology Center/Canvas course delivery
  • Olivia Fernandez, Information Technology Services
  • Deb Gibson, Faculty/Health and Human Performance
  • Katie High, Interim Dean, College of Business and Global Affairs
  • Bud Grimes, University Relations
  • Ryan Martin, Residence Life
  • Tim Nipp, Facilities
  • Ali Sabahi, Faculty/Biological Sciences
  • Anderson Starling, Faculty/Political Science
  • Mike Swaim, Alumnus/Pharmacist
  • Destin Tucker, Undergraduate Admissions
  • Michael Washington, Human Resources
  • Erin Weber, Paul Meek Library

In addition to the main campus, UT Martin manages centers in Jackson, Parsons, McNairy County/Selmer, Ripley and Somerville.

Information about UT Martin’s response to the COVID-19 crisis is available at www.utm.edu/coronavirus. Additional information is available through Office of University Relations at 731-881-7615.


Previous Story

UT campuses propose unprecedented, across-the-board zero percent tuition increases

Next Story

Majors reminds students to be hopeful, open-minded