Students get a taste of Japan

The International House cultural coffeehouse series continued with featured country Japan on April 11.

Exchange student Haruna explained this coffeehouse offered four snacks Japanese natives consume on a daily basis: sweet bean cake with whipped cream, two types of rice crackers and Green Tea KitKats.

“We have YAMAMOTOYAMA Green Tea Sushi Bar Style, and in Japan, anytime we have sushi, we will have this specific green tea with it. It is a favorite,” Haruna said.

In the spirit of a coffeehouse, they also served a darker tea called Hoji Cha, which is a roasted green tea.

While students learned a little about Japan, Haruna connected with American culture.

“I am from Tokyo, Japan, and I came to UT because I know people who went on exchange last year, and they said the people in Knoxville are so kind,” Haruna said. “There are not a lot of Japanese people here, so it is a good opportunity for me to learn about a new culture.”

Some students enjoyed the cultural experience while earning credit for the 1794 Honors Program. UT freshman JoAnna Martin hopes to become more globally aware through such experiences.

“I have never had this kind of food before so it is definitely experience,” Martin said. “I love the way all of it smells, and I think it will help me be culturally well-rounded.”

The I-House coffee series continues every Wednesday in the Mary Greer room of Hodges Library.


Featured photo: Kaitlyn Marlow

Hate words smear the Rock again

Sometime during the night before Monday, April 9, a group defaced the University of Tennessee Rock with derogatory words.

The Rock reads “Sluts catch AIDS” beside what resembles three crosses. The message is signed by “Federalist Soc.”

The incident marks just one of several times the Rock featured negativity this school year. On Feb. 12, more than 400 members of the Volunteer community gathered at the Rock and created a rainbow of handprints to cover racist remarks.

Students wonder if the current phrase correlates with UT’s annual Sex Week. The educational venture runs through April 12.

“I think it definitely has something to do with sex week,” junior Lainey Goodwill said. “Sex Week is such an important event here on campus, but it gets a lot of backlash. People mistakenly think that providing sex education to college students means that those students are going to suddenly start having lots of irresponsible sex and getting abortions, when that’s just not accurate.”

Sexual Empowerment and Awareness at Tennessee (SEAT) coordinates Sex Week on campus. SEAT aims to educate the students of UT about sex, sexuality and relationships.

“UT has a sex week to compensate for Tennessee’s inconsistent sex education in high schools,” Goodwill said. “The information you got largely depended on where you went to school.”

More information about UT Sex Week and the list of events can be found here.

Featured photo taken by Chelsea Babin

Sex Week dances its way back to UT

Sunday, April 8, the University of Tennessee’s sixth annual Sex Week kicked off with a cabaret show at the Clarence Brown Carousel Theatre. By popular demand, this year’s Sex Week featured two shows at 4:30 p.m. and 8:30 p.m.

UT’s own Boss Dance Company took the stage accompanied by a live band. Many different acts graced the stage for exclusive performances. Due to performers’ privacy and venue, organizers prohibited videography. However, the intimacy allowed for the audience to be more engaged in the show.

If students reserved tickets ahead of time, they received the option to sit in the “consent zone.” This zone allowed for more audience-performer interactions. This aspect certainly came into play during the second half of the show. A performer serenaded an audience member with Khalid’s “Location” in the middle of the stage.

Katie Petrie, a sophomore attendee, enjoyed the rendition of  “Bad Idea” from the Broadway hit musical “Waitress” and loved its humor. She also enjoyed seeing friends dance with the company.

The show brought old friends together. Freshman Rachel Griffin reunited with a friend she had not seen in four years. After benefiting from her first Sex Week event, she hopes to attend more despite crazy scheduling near the end of the semester.

While the show started off fun and friendly, the second half featured emotional ballads. Many songs conveyed the theme of sexual identity to unite the crowd and encourage acceptance.

The cast joined together for the finale, encouraging the audience to join in song. The cast sang “Love Train” to end the night.

Sex Week continues through April 12.


Written by Lauren Claxton

UTPD partners with Panhellenic Council to promote self defense

The University of Tennessee aims to empower and educate women in the age of #MeToo. From April 2 to April 6, the University of Tennessee Police Department and Panhellenic Council invited the female campus community to attend a self-defense class at the Sorority Village Center.

The event taught individuals easy ways to protect themselves around campus or in cases of imminent danger. Each 30-minute session allowed for practice and increased confidence.

Stephanie Cornejo, a UT student and member of the Panhellenic community, said she came to learn the basics.

“Women are the main targets on college campuses,” Cornejo said. “I wanted to know these defense moves because I often walk back to my car from the library, and it’s dark, and you never know what you could be faced with.”

Two officers accompanied by a police dog instructed students to partner in groups of two. Partners practiced moves useful in different situations.

Freshman student Abigail Baker believes all women should take a self defense class.

“[Women] shouldn’t have to depend on someone else to save them” Baker said. “You are important, so you need to know how to protect yourself.”

UTPD also encourages all women to attend the Rape Aggression Defense program to learn more about protection in harmful situations. UTPD holds classes free of charge. The program does not require women to be students, faculty or staff to participate.

Featured Image: Wikimedia Commons

Women’s, Men’s chorales give final performances

Tuesday, April 3 the Women’s and Men’s Chorales gathered at Cox Auditorium for their spring concert. The night’s focus however, shifted to leaders including Dr. Angela Batey, associate professor Andrew Skoog, graduate student conductors and alumni.

In front of a large crowd, graduate students conducted the majority of the pieces, many of which featured a different language. However, the a cappella groups reVOLution and VOLume stuck to contemporary hits such as “Skyscraper” by Demi Lovato.

The Women’s Chorale closed the show with the “Tennessee Waltz arranged specifically for the choir by UT choral conducting alumus Seth O’ Kegley.

Just before the final song, graduate student conductor Hannah Berkley led the women in singing a Hungarian piece entitled “Túrōt Ëszik A Cigány” composed by the late Zoltan Kodály. Berkley spoke to some of the challenges of the song.

“With ten songs and six different conductors, you don’t get a lot of rehearsal time,” she said. “The Women’s Choir has fifty minute rehearsals, so each conductor gets six minutes. You are up and then you’re down.”

Berkley added that neither she nor anyone in the choir knew Hungarian, posing an added challenge to master the pronunciation.

Berkley emphasized the tight-knit relations between the choirs. To be effective performers, they must mesh as ensembles. Listening to one another remains key to achieving a uniform sound.

The Chamber Singers and the Concert Choir will be back for the fall semester. In the meantime, Berkley and the other Chamber Singers gear up for their Ireland tour this summer.

To check on all events related to the Tennessee School of Music, visit

Written by Lauren Claxton

Featured image by Kaitlin Marlowe

Edited by Lexie Little

UT alumnus shares business success story

On Saturdays in the fall, Vols wear orange. And a Knoxville-based store plays a large roll in creating the sea of orange that fills Neyland Stadium.

The Delta Sigma Pi business fraternity hosted Alumni Hall owner and UT graduate Jeff Goodfriend Tuesday, April 3 for a professional speaker event.

In 2006, Jimmy Dawahare opened the first Alumni Hall in Lexington, Kentucky. According to Goodfriend, Dawahare took the name “Alumni Hall” from the winner of a thoroughbred horse race.

Though founded in Lexington, the collegiate store found a home in Knoxville where the company finds its largest customer base. Goodfriend said Volunteer fans’ loyalty and passion keep sales alive despite a disappointing football season.

Niche identification remains his key to success. Goodfriend said the ability to recognize what fans like to wear to the football games and the ability to identify the most popular sports make or break a store’s success. For example, University of Kentucky basketball often proves more popular than its football team. Basketball apparel is more lucrative in that market.

Goodfriend worked for Goody’s, the store his grandfather founded in 1953, until his departure in 2007. His family sold the company in 2005. Goodfriend took over as owner of Alumni Hall when he joined the team.

Alumni Hall features popular clothing brands like Nike, Under Armor, Columbia, Adidas and other regional brands.

Alumni Hall now possesses 27 storefronts for almost 20 different universities. Alumni Hall offers products in six Tennessee locations: one store in Bristol, two locations in the Nashville region and three locations in Knoxville.