This page is currently under construction. Thanks for your patience as we restructure our resources page and keep the information presented here as expansive and up-to-date as possible!
Discovering and Supporting Yourself
This section is all about exploring and supporting yourself as you navigate your own identities throughout both your time here at UT and your life after UT. We have included resources about discovering yourself and reflecting yourself in an affirmative way at the university.
Questioning and coming out
- LGBTQ+ Glossary of Terminology: An ever updating list of gender and sexuality related terminology from the Safe Zone Project. Check this if you have no idea where to even start.
- I Think I Might Be Lesbian: Written by young lesbians, this pamphlet provides answers for young people questioning their sexual orientation. This pamphlet was created by Advocates for Youth.
- I Think I Might Be Gay: Written by young gay men, this pamphlet provides answers for young people with questions about sexual orientation. This pamphlet was created by Advocates for Youth.
- I Think I Might Be Bisexual + Pansexual: Written by bisexual and pansexual youth, this pamphlet provides answers for young people with questions about sexual orientation. This pamphlet was created by Advocates for Youth.
- I Think I Might Be Asexual: Written by asexual youth, this pamphlet provides answers for young people questioning their sexual orientation. This pamphlet was created by Advocates for Youth.
- I Think I Might Be Transgender: Written by transgender youth, this pamphlet provides answers for young people who find that the gender that they were assigned at birth does not fit them. This pamphlet was created by Advocates for Youth.
- Be Yourself: This publication from PFLAG offers a supportive and understanding approach to today’s most common questions and concerns from youth regarding sexual orientation, gender identity, and gender expression.
For legal name and gender of record changes:
- To change your legal name at UT, you must submit a Change of Name Request form along with the appropriate documentation. For more information, click here.
- To change your gender on record in Banner, students must submit appropriate documentation to Katherine Abbot (firstname.lastname@example.org), Associate Registrar. “Appropriate documentation” could be a copy of a legal document indicating gender or a letter from their primary care physician/mental health provider. If you have any questions, please contact Katherine at the above email.
For preferred name changes:
- Banner, MyUTK, and Canvas: To request the use of a preferred name (no legal documentation is required), click here to sign into Banner and submit the request. This Banner request should update with MyUTK and Canvas within 48 hours. Please contact OIT (865-974-9900) if your preferred name does not update within 48 hours on Canvas.
FYI: Once the preferred first name has been established, the student is responsible for confirming with their instructors the existence and use of the preferred first name on respective class rosters. Official, external communications such as financial aid reporting, official transcripts, billing and similar documents will continue to display an individual’s legal name. The name on your FASFA (application for federal financial aid) must match the legal name in the student information system in order for aid to be processed.
- UTK Directory: To change your name in the UTK Directory, students must update their “Known As” name with OneStop. Employees/faculty/staff need to go to their department of employment and ask them to update your “Known As” name in IRIS.
- VolCard: Your VolCard name is also linked to the preferred name system. After the preferred name change is approved (usually within 24-48 hours of your request submission), you can go to the VolCard office and pay the $30 replacement fee to get a new VolCard with your preferred name on it.
*The Pride Center is currently working to offset/fund this fee, so stay tuned*
- VOLink: VOLink, the student organization portal, connects to the preferred name change system in Banner. We are aware there are current issues getting preferred names to update, and we are working to identify and solve this in a timely manner.
- Handshake: We are currently working to identify the system and technology linkage between our preferred name change system through Banner and Handshake, the internship and job portal.
- UTK Email: While folks cannot change their NetIDs, you can set up an alias for sending and receiving emails through your UTK email. Check out this OIT article for instructions on how to set up an alias.
- ADDITIONAL NOTE: If you have EVER been on the university payroll (working at a summer camp here, note-taking, student assistant, work study, etc.), you must ALSO submit a Personal Data Form to Human Resources located here: https://iris.tennessee.edu/forms/human-resourcespayroll-forms/
If you are continuing to have problems getting your name accurately reflected here in various UT systems, please contact the Pride Center Coordinator, Bonnie Johnson, at email@example.com, and she will assist as much as possible.
On campus resources
- The Pride Center and CHEW both offer FREE safer sex supplies during their business hours, including lubricants, external condoms, insertive condoms, dental dams, and more.
- 974-HELP: For distressed students of all levels. The 974-HELP referral line was developed to help distressed or distressing students reach their academic goals and to help maintain a safe community and learning environment for all students. If you have a concern about a student for any reason, do not hesitate to reach out and call. For more information check out their website here: https://dos.utk.edu/974-help/our-approach/
- Student Counseling Center (SCC): The Student Counseling Center offers individual counseling and group therapy for all students, including LGBTQ+ inclusive individual, group, and relationship therapy; a set number of sessions a year are available for free to students who have paid their student health fee. For more information on the Counseling Center, including scheduling an appointment, check out their website here.
- Student Health Center (SHC): The Student Health Center offers primary care services to our students. For general information, including regular appointment booking, check out their website here.
The Gender Clinic at the SHC offers services for students interested in medical transition. Stop by the Sports Medicine Clinic on the first floor or call Jessica Ott, the Gender Clinic administrative assistant, at 865-974-5663 to get a gender clinic appointment scheduled. Do not use the regular SHC appointment booking system for a gender clinic appointment. Check out the following .pdf guide for more information on the Gender Clinic, including pricing: Gender Clinic Guide
- Center for Health Education and Wellness (CHEW): The Center for Health Education and Wellness empowers all Volunteers to thrive by cultivating personal and community well-being. They offer educational programming around physical, mental, and sexual health. At CHEW (located in the Health Center on the second floor), you can pick up safer sex supplies for free. For more information, check out their website here: https://wellness.utk.edu/
- UT Psychological Clinic: The UT Psych Clinic is located in the UT Conference Center downtown. They offer therapeutic services with sliding scale payment. We recommend current students work with the Student Counseling Center first, since the student health fee already covers counseling services there but NOT at the Psych Clinic. For more information, check out their website here: https://psychclinic.utk.edu/
Off-campus and online resources
- Planned Parenthood – Knoxville: Planned Parenthood is one of the nation’s leading providers of high-quality, affordable health care, and the nation’s largest provider of sex education. They offer medical transition services in addition to other affirming sexual healthcare.
- Positively Living: Positively Living provides case management, supportive housing, food service, and mental health/addiction counseling to individuals who are homeless; mentally ill; addicted to drugs, alcohol, or other substances; and/or living with HIV/AIDS. They offer free STI testing, PrEP, safer sex supplies, medical transition services, and more.
- UT Housing accommodations: Please contact Richard Swearingen at firstname.lastname@example.org for more information on housing options for transgender and nonbinary students.
- Accessibility accommodations: For accessibility, transportation, testing, and classroom accommodations, please check out Student Disability Services.
- I’m Muslim and My Gender Doesn’t Fit Me: Written by queer Muslim youth, this pamphlet provides some support for Muslim people questioning their gender identity. This pamphlet was created by the Muslim Youth Leadership Council for Advocates for Youth.
- I’m Muslim and I Might Not Be Straight (English): Written by queer Muslim youth, this pamphlet provides some support for Muslim people questioning their orientation. This pamphlet was created by the Muslim Youth Leadership Council for Advocates for Youth.
- I’m Muslim and I Might Not Be Straight (Arabic): Written by queer Muslim youth, this pamphlet provides some support for Muslim people questioning their orientation. This pamphlet was created by the Muslim Youth Leadership Council for Advocates for Youth.
- Campus Pride – Religion and Faith: a resource list from Campus Pride about their own faith initiatives and those of their partners.
- World Congress of Gay, Lesbian, and Bisexual Jewish Organizations: The World Congress organizes conferences, translates materials, supports leaders, and connects new and established LGBTQIA+ Jewish organizations from across the globe.
- Reconciling Ministries Network: RMN seeks to promote and connect LGBTQ+ affirming Methodist churches across the world.
- Affirmation: Affirmation is an organization dedicated to promoting and supporting LGBTQ Mormon/LDS people, families, and friends.
Affirming faith spaces on campus and in Knoxville
This list is not an exhaustive list and serves as a working document of religious spaces across Knoxville that are welcoming to the LGBTQ+ community. If you have any suggestions or information on faith locations listed, please contact email@example.com with your feedback and information. Thanks!
- Tyson House: The Tyson House Lutheran-Episcopal Campus Ministry is an ecumenical worshipping community located at UTK. During the fall and spring semesters, they have a weekly dinner and worship service, every Sunday at 6:04 p.m. They also have a weekly faith formation class. Tyson House has been a Reconciling in Christ congregation since 2016.
Contact: (865) 637-2031
- Wesley Foundation: The Wesley Foundation is the United Methodist Collegiate Ministry at UTK, located on-campus. They offer Sunday worship, Wednesday night dinner and discussions, small groups, and intramural sports. They offer an LGBTQ+ focused worship group called Mosaic.
Contact: (865) 522-2728; firstname.lastname@example.org
- UKirk: UKirk is the Presbyterian ministry on campus. They offer Wednesday worship, Monday lunches at 12:30pm (vegetarian-friendly), a community garden, and a pay-as-you-can coffee/tea shop in their building.
Contact: (865) 394-9242
- Church Street United Methodist Church: Church Street is a close-to-campus Methodist ministry. They offer Sunday service, Wednesday worship and lunch, volunteer opportunities, and other community engagement.
Contact: (865) 524-3048
- Tennessee Valley Unitarian Universalist Church: TVUUC is a close-to-campus Unitarian Universalist church. They offer Sunday worship, many weekly and monthly engagement opportunities, Wednesday evening potlucks, and an LGBTQ+ affirming youth group.
Contact: (865) 523-4176
- Temple Beth El: Temple Beth El is a Reform Jewish synagogue, affiliated with Union for Reform Judaism. They offer youth programming, regular services, and adult education. Check out their website for more information.
Contact: (865) 524-3521
- If you know a local mosque(s) that is LGBTQ+ affirming, please let us know at email@example.com, and we will update this section immediately!
Other faith traditions
- If you know of or attend any other places of worship/practice faith traditions that are LGBTQ+ affirming and open to the public, please let us know at firstname.lastname@example.org, and we will update this section immediately!
- Bias Education and Response Team: If you feel you have been the victim of a bias related incident (harrassment, discrimination, etc.), we encourage you to a report with the Bias Education and Reponse Team (BERT). Click this link for reporting and more information: https://bias.utk.edu/how-to-report-an-incident/
- Title IX: The Office of Title IX deals primarily with instances of sexual misconduct, stalking, relationship violence, and retaliation. If you feel you have been the victim/survivor of any of the above, you have options. Check out the following link for more information on getting help (in many forms–we respect everyone’s right to decide if, when, and how they report): https://titleix.utk.edu/get-help-now/
- Office of Equity and Diversity: OED fulfills an important compliance function by working with various legal mandates set out by state and federal law and university policies related to civil rights, equal employment, and affirmative action. If you would like to file a discrimination-related complaint, check out their website for more information here: https://oed.utk.edu/complaints/
The Commission for LGBT People has developed a pocket-sized resource guide for trans and nonbinary folks on campus. Check it out here: https://cflgbt.utk.edu/transgender-non-binary-resource-guide/
This section is all about how to support other people on their own journeys of self-discovery. Wanting to kick off your own allyship? Start here!
- My Pronouns: Learn about all things personal pronouns: why they matter, using them, sharing yours, asking for others’, and gender inclusive usage!
- When Someone Comes Out to You – flyer: Check out this resource guide (When Someone Comes Out to You) from the Pride Center about how to support those in your life that come out to you.
- LGBTQ+ Glossary of Terminology: An ever updating list of gender and sexuality related terminology from the Safe Zone Project. Check this if you have no idea where to even start.
- Straight for Equality Initiative: From PFLAG–Straight for Equality provides information and resources that will help straight allies understand their role in supporting and advocating for LGBTQ people. PFLAG’s work with parents and families over the past 45 years has helped us learn that there is a coming out process for allies. It takes learning and resources if allies want to move from just feeling supportive to actively being supportive. For us, ally is both an identity and a verb.
- Ally Spectrum: Check out Straight for Equality’s ally spectrum. Are you a new ally, everyday ally, or super ally? Discover resources for every step of the way no matter where you land.
- Guide for Straight Allies: This guide will help you understand how straight allies fit in the effort to achieve equality for all. Learn more about what it means to be a straight ally and get some great tips and tools to being more supportive of your LGBTQ friends, family, and colleagues.
- When Someone Comes Out to You – PFLAG webinar: This brand-new webinar has some great tips, tools, and ideas for PFLAG members looking to support LGBTQ+ individuals who are planning to come out and new (and potential) allies who want to demonstrate their acceptance of LGBTQ folks in their lives. Whether you’re new to coaching people through coming out or looking for a refresher and to build your skills, the session provides action items to make you a more effective advocate.
We are revising this section–check back soon!
- 946-CARE: For distressed faculty and staff. UT’s top priority is the safety and well-being of faculty, staff, and students. The 946-CARE (865-946-2273) program is available twenty-four hours a day to help faculty and staff maintain a secure and healthy working environment. For more information, check out their website here: https://hr.utk.edu/care/
- PFLAG: PFLAG is a national organization focused on promoting allyship and creating community. “PFLAG is the extended family of the LGBTQ community. We’re made up of LGBTQ individuals, family members and allies. Because together, we’re stronger.” Find a local chapter here.
- Gender Basics for Parents: Discussions of gender are everywhere these days. Unfortunately, these discussions can leave us more confused than ever. This video will provide you the foundation you need to support your own children and others.
- Our Children: Our Children offers a fresh eye for families and others about what to do when a loved ones comes out. Full of useful knowledge, helpful tips, expert opinions and first-person stories, Our Children–which has a focus on sexual orientation and gender expression–is a must read for anyone looking to learn more about how to support LGBTQ loved ones…or looking for support for themselves. From PFLAG.
- Our Trans Loved Ones: Our Trans Loved Ones is a brand-new, updated resource. Written by PFLAG staff members, and created with the help of content experts, reviewers, and PFLAGers with experience to share, it is full of information, first-person stories, and expert input geared to those who have a loved one who has come out as trans or gender expansive.
- Acceptance Within Families of Color training toolkit: an informational toolkit from PFLAG based on their “Family Acceptance Within Families of Color” presentation.
Getting InVOLved, Educated, and Paid:
This section is about plugging into the Volunteer community and the world beyond UT. The title says it ALL!
- Gaymerz: Gaymerz is a gaming (video and table table) group focused on creating an affirming space for the LGBTQ+ community within gaming. They meet weekly. Check out their VOLink page here: https://utk.campuslabs.com/engage/organization/gaymerz
- OUTgrads: OUTgrads is a group for LGBTQ+ and ally graduate students. The club aims to support friendships and networking among graduate students while maintaining an active roll in the education and advancement of UT’s LGBTQ+ community, promoting unity, acceptance, and visibility. The current president of OUTgrads is Nick Mucci and you can email with any questions to: email@example.com. Check out their Facebook page here: https://www.facebook.com/utkoutgrads
- Lambda Law Society: Lambda Law Society is a student organization that is dedicated to promoting diversity education and awareness, fellowship, and discussion both in the UT Law community and in Knoxville at large. Our group is open to everyone and is completely free! Lambda Law Society includes members, friends, and allies of the LGBTQ community, and people who are interested in the issues of civil rights and gender and sexuality in the law. We believe that everyone has a diverse perspective to offer, and sharing these perspectives with one another strengthens us all as individuals and future attorneys. Check out their Facebook page here: https://www.facebook.com/lambdalawsociety/
- volOUT (formerly the Lambda Student Union): volOUT is the undergraduate LGBTQ+ student organization. Due to lack of interested leadership, it is currently inactive. Do you have a passion for the community and want to gt it restarted? Please contact Joel Kramer (he/him/his), the organization advisor, at firstname.lastname@example.org.
If you have a new student organization you would like to add to the list, please contact us at email@example.com with more information.
- Pride Center Peer Mentoring Program: The Pride Center Peer Mentoring Program (PCPMP) strives to provide a safer environment through peer-oriented guidance to ensure the continuing success of the next generation of UT students. We believe this guidance allows students to better embrace both themselves and the Volunteer community at large. Our goal is to foster a sense of unity among LGBTQ+ and ally students, connect them to community and campus resources, and provide an example of allyship to the broader UT community. For more information, check out our link here: https://pridecenter.utk.edu/programming/pcpmp/
- Commission for LGBT People LGBTQ+ Mentoring Program: The LGBTQ+ Mentoring program pairs LGBTQ+ undergraduate and graduate student mentees with mentors to encourage professional and career development. Undergraduate and graduate students may apply to be mentees. Faculty, staff, and graduate students may apply to be mentors. For more information and applications, check out their link here: https://cflgbt.utk.edu/mentorship/
- Multicultural Mentoring Program: The Office of Multicultural Student Life sponsors the Multicultural Mentoring Program. The MMP’s goal is to provide personal support, assistance, social guidance, and positive campus survival skills to first-year students of color by developing activities and interactions with upper-class students to address personal needs, thus contributing to their academic success, and enhancing the University of Tennessee’s efforts in recruiting, retaining and graduating students of color. For more information and applications, check out their link here: https://multicultural.utk.edu/programs/mmp/
- Student Disability Services Peer Mentoring Program: SDS offers a peer mentoring program aimed at first year students with disabilities. For more information, check out their website here: https://sds.utk.edu/peer-mentee-information/
- The Commission for LGBT People: The Commission for LGBT People is a body appointed by the chancellor to advise on planning, implementation, and evaluation of university programs, policies, and services designed to improve the status of lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender people on the Knoxville campus. The Commission, in its role as an advocacy group, is committed to the protection and advancement of LGBT students, faculty, and staff at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville. For more information, check out this link: https://cflgbt.utk.edu/
- The Commission for Blacks: The Commission for Blacks (CFB) is a body appointed by the Chancellor to advise on planning, implementation, and evaluation of University programs, policies, and services as they relate to students, faculty, and staff who identify in the Black racial/ethnic group of the Knoxville campus. For more information, check out this link: https://cfb.utk.edu/
- The Commission for Women: The Commission for Women is a body appointed by the Chancellor to advise on the planning, implementation, and evaluation of university programs, policies, and services designed to improve the status of women on the Knoxville campus of the University of Tennessee. For more information, check out this link: https://cfw.utk.edu/
- Council for Diversity and Interculturalism: Appointed by the Chancellor, the council advises the campus administration on creating and sustaining a welcoming, supportive, and inclusive campus climate to all groups. Goals for the group include attracting and retaining faculty and staff from under-represented populations; attracting, retaining, and graduating students from historically under-represented populations and international students; and ensuring that undergraduate curricular requirements include significant intercultural perspectives. For more information, check out their website here: https://cdi.utk.edu/
- Safe Zone at UT: Safe Zone at UT is a workshop series designed to teach the UT community about the basic language and terminology related to gender and sexuality, LGBTQ+ allyship practices, skills to intervene in discriminatory situations, and more! For more information, check out the website here: https://safezone.utk.edu/about/
- Diversity Educators: Seeking a fresh approach to diversity training for your students? Looking for a fun and educational activity for your organization? The Office of Multicultural Life is available to coordinate a variety of diversity programs for UT students! Our diversity education workshops are aimed at empowering students to be leaders in a diverse community. Student organizations, university departments, and faculty members are invited to request programs from our diversity education team. For more information, check out their website here: https://multicultural.utk.edu/programs/diversity-education/
- QPR – Question, Persuade, Refer: QPR is a suicide prevention program hosted by the Student Counseling Center. Learn how to recognize signs of distress and support them apppropriately. For more information, check out SCC’s website here: https://counselingcenter.utk.edu/community-outreach/
We are updating this section. If you would like to share an opportunity, please email firstname.lastname@example.org
At UT/Distributed by UT:
- Graduate Student Senate Travel Awards: The Graduate Student Senate Travel Award is administered by the Dean of the Graduate School in coordination by the Graduate Student Senate. Allocations from this fund provide travel awards for University of Tennessee graduate students attending professional meetings to present original research. The awards, distributed three times a year, are made on the basis of both need and merit, and allow for partial reimbursement of transportation, lodging, and conference expenses.
Distributed by external organizations:
- The Rainbow Scholarship from Fund for Education Abroad: This scholarship is awarded to deserving LGBTQI students who aim to participate in a high-quality, rigorous education abroad program. The mission of the Fund for Education Abroad (FEA) is to provide scholarships and ongoing support to students who are underrepresented among the U.S. study abroad population. FEA makes life-changing, international experiences accessible to all by supporting minority, community college, and first-generation college students before, during, and after they participate in education abroad programs. For more information, check out their website linked above and consult the Programs Abroad office in the Center for Global Engagement.
We are revising this section–check back soon!