CHATTANOOGA (WDEF) – UTC issues a statement on The Chalkening/Donald Trump controversy on campus.
Student groups are erasing pro-Trump chalk message on the pavement and replacing them with their own messages about unity.
The dispute has also touched the Student Government Association over a member who is a Trump supporter.
On Thursday, the University posted this statement on the controversy.
Diversity—including diversity of thought—is a core value of the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga. This idea was put to the test when a question of free speech developed between several groups of students.
The heated dialogue that resulted was unfortunate but serves as a teachable moment for our students and the incoming student government leadership. The UTC administration has not played a role in this debate. No student has been disciplined or chastised by the administration for his/her personal political beliefs.
UTC is home to more than 11,000 students, 1,200 faculty and staff, and 50,000 alumni, each with individual backgrounds and beliefs. We hope the students involved in this dispute resolve their differences and use this opportunity to learn important lessons about humility, effective communication, collaboration, and leadership.