University Of Tennessee At Chattanooga Plans For AI Integration & Introduces AI Bootcamp

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The Tennessee Conservative [By Adelia Kirchner] –

The University of Tennessee at Chattanooga (UTC) is undergoing a “reorganization” of their top staff as the college plans to integrate artificial intelligence (AI) into their research, business, and instructional operations.

Back in May of this year, Former Hamilton County School Superintendent, Bryan Johnson, joined UTC’s leadership team

Johnson resigned from his position as superintendent in August 2021 without stating an official reason. He then served as the Chief of Staff for U.S. Xpress before moving on to work with UTC. 

As executive vice chancellor and chief strategy officer for UTC, Johnson will now be overseeing the university’s communications and marketing. 

Amidst several other reorganization changes, UTC Chancellor Steven Angle said that the university’s chief of staff plans to leave UTC and the position will be eliminated. Johnson is currently slated to take over those responsibilities.

According to Angle, UTC Vice Chancellor and Chief Information Officer, Vicki Farnsworth, is going to “oversee the integration of generative AI (Artificial Intelligence) across the campus.”

Angle went on to say that there are multiple reasons for UTC’s reorganization. 

This includes “gaining an organization-wide view to apply generative AI in our instruction, business operations, and research,” he said.

“Our campus open forums on AI have prompted us to directly take on the challenges and opportunities presented by this innovative technology,” Angle continued.

Earlier this year the University of Tennessee at Knoxville (UTK) also decided to integrate AI into their educational curriculum and systems, under the guise of “enhancing” the learning experience and “embracing” some of the newer aspects of AI technology.

UTC Mathematics Professor Chris Cox told News Channel 9 in July, that he was already using AI in his classroom and believes the technology can “enhance” learning as long as it is used correctly.

According to Cox, UTC’s business and engineering departments had also already incorporated AI into their courses.

“I think it’s unavoidable that we are going to deal with it,” said Cox. “It has become ambiguous for students to write papers, work on their math problems, do a variety of things with [AI]. The challenge is to use it constructively.”

However, one UTC student approached by News Channel 9 asked, “If students are using [AI] on all of their assignments, how are they going to perform on tests?”

Another concern surrounds intellectual property and whether or not using an AI resource like ChatGPT to complete assignments is technically cheating.

“I think if students aren’t doing the work themselves,” one UTC student said, “it’s not their original thought processes, and not technically theirs.”

UTC has already set up their website to provide students and faculty with resources for using ChatGPT and Generative AI.

Additionally, the university is now offering a six-month, online AI/Machine Learning (ML) Bootcamp for those interested in the career field. 

The course includes “practical programming skills in Python and ML” and prepares students to pass the Microsoft Azure AI Engineer Certification Exam, a new 100-level AI course offered by UTC. 

About the Author: Adelia Kirchner is a Tennessee resident and reporter for the Tennessee Conservative. Currently the host of Subtle Rampage Podcast, she has also worked for the South Dakota State Legislature and interned for Senator Bill Hagerty’s Office in Nashville, Tennessee. You can reach Adelia at

One thought on “University Of Tennessee At Chattanooga Plans For AI Integration & Introduces AI Bootcamp

  • November 1, 2023 at 5:16 pm

    I would think that something like “Microsoft Azure AI Engineer Certification Exam, a new 100-level AI course” might be prerequisite for anyone attempting AI applications because AI is too novel to have established protocols by which other complicated technologies are applied.

    If you need a low carbon stell that is corrosion resistant and reisists work hardening, you needn’t be a metallurgist. You can look up the ASTM alloys with the properties you want and order whatever forms you need.

    AI hasn’t gotten there. You need to know how it works to know what it’s doing.

    Computer chemistry is like that (or was, anyway) Hartree-Foch will give you energy minimums or maximums but whether they are global or just local isn’t (or at lesat wasn’t) guaranteed jus tby the nature of the way it worked. The are a ariety of computational methods and they have their pros and cons which makes a difference in an application.

    We’ve alrady heard how AI is going ot destroy civilization by creating impenetrable illusions but that doesn’t seem to have gone much farther than the “Thotopocalypse” because, of all things, people actaully prefer images that look too good to be real. But, wasn’t that always the case in any graphics?
    Famous paintings to cartoons, none of it is real. EVen photogrpahy is an art.

    AI is going to make arguments no man can resist!BUt, I think that’s been done.

    So far, there’s a certain “AI quality” to everything AI generated while the bottom line remains ths same : buyer beware!

    OF course, AI can be useful. But it’s still wise practice to keep on eye on whatever it’s keeping an eye on.
    AI didn’t help teh Israli survaillance of Gaza recently and I’m sure Russia has a manual over ride in their AI robot tank killing vehicle. At least, you’d hope.


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