It was announced Thursday by recently instated University of Tennessee Chancellor Beverly Davenport that it is a “priority” of the university to reinstall the Pride Center.
The Pride Center was part of the Office of Diversity and Inclusion which was defended by the state legislature last year after the office directed events such as Sex Week, gender neutral pronouns, and released a statement on making sure staff did not have a “Christmas party in disguise.”
There has been much controversy around the Pride Center which is a center for students of LGBTQ+ identification to go for guidance and promotion of their lifestyles.
According to the Knoxville News Sentinel:
The funding for UT’s diversity office, totaling $445,882, has been put back into the Knoxville campus’ budget for 2017-2018, but before Thursday no plans had been announced about how it would be spent.
Chancellor Davenport later went on to say that the $445,882 was not a lot of money for a university as large as UTK and it would be contributed to Title IX, Wellness, and to cover the cost of a new director for the pride center. This is on the heels of a proposed increase of tuition on students of 2% for next year.
Currently, the majority of the defended monies goes towards funding of scholarships for minority students and In God We Trust tags for police officers. The revival of this office would be a defeat for conservative groups and students on campus.
Chancellor Davenport can be reached at: