UTC Students Help Renovate Prairie Dog Exhibit At Zoo

Thursday, January 23, 2014

The Chattanooga Zoo partnered with students and faculty in the UTC Department of Biological and Environmental Sciences and College of Engineering to renovate the Zoo’s existing prairie dog exhibit.   

The original prairie dog exhibit, home to five prairie dogs, was built in 1998.  This exhibit is approximately 400 square feet in size and contains two chest-high observation windows.  UTC Engineering students have redesigned the exhibit to incorporate a children’s viewing tunnel which will allows children to get eye level with their prairie dog counterparts through the creation of a viewing space within the actual exhibit.  

Funding for the renovations was provided by the Community Foundation of Greater Chattanooga as part of a larger collaboration between UTC, the Chattanooga Girls Leadership Academy and the Chattanooga Zoo to study animal behaviors in their habitats.  

“This exhibit is the product of a lot of hard work by UTC students and faculty and the staff at the Chattanooga Zoo,” notes Dr. Loren Hayes, assistant professor of Biological and Environmental Sciences at UTC and animal behaviors study program coordinator.  “Personally, I am really impressed by the creativity and dedication of the UTC Engineering students who designed and constructed the exhibit. This represents the beginning of what we all hope is a long-term collaboration between UTC, the Zoo, and CGLA.  With support from the Community Foundation of Greater Chattanooga and the National Science Foundation, we are already engaged in additional collaborations, including studies of animal behavior by UTC Biology and CGLA students and the planning of new exhibits for other animals at the Zoo. This is a win-win situation for all of the students and Chattanooga.”

Zoo CEO, Dardenelle Long seconds Dr. Hayes sentiments in stating that, “The Chattanooga Zoo is thrilled to serve as an educational resource for local students.  We sincerely hope that this partnership becomes a model for many future collaborations with local education institutions.” 

An official unveiling for the new, renovated exhibit is scheduled to take place on Friday, Feb. 7, at 9 a.m. at the Chattanooga Zoo.  The ceremony is open to the public. 



Cleveland State Holds First Advisory Board Meeting

In an effort to build stronger relationships with the people and communities served by the college, Cleveland State has implemented a new Advisory Board and recently held the first meeting. Last year, the college with assistance and input from students, community members, business leaders and other key stakeholders engaged in a strategic planning process. From that process, ... (click for more)

Education Department Launches Statewide Tour To Get Input On ESSA Plan

Commissioner Candice McQueen and senior department leaders are launching a statewide listening tour to gather input from educators, key advocates, parents, students, and the public to determine how to implement specific components of the nation’s new federal education law: the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA). The feedback will inform a Tennessee-specific ESSA plan that will guide ... (click for more)

Sources Say Domestic Incident Involving Mayor's Aide Came After Husband Confronted Her And Mayor Behind Restaurant; Berke Says Charge "Absolutely False"; Fletcher Says Gave Shelter To Lacie Stone; Case Handled Like Any Other

A domestic disorder involving a top female aide to Mayor Andy Berke was sparked after her husband recently confronted the aide and the mayor in a parked car behind a Mexican restaurant, several sources said.   Mayor Andy Berke said late Tuesday night, "Last weekend a member of my senior staff was the victim of a domestic assault involving her husband. Upon being arrested ... (click for more)

Attorney For Bobby Stone Hits Berke, Fletcher For Commenting On Pending Case

The attorney for Bobby Stone on Wednesday said it was "fundamentally wrong" for Mayor Andy Berke and Police Chief Fred Fletcher to comment on the case in which Mr. Stone is charged with domestic assault against his wife, Berke advisor Lacie Stone. Attorney Lee Davis said the comments were unfair and "a disservice to the court." Mayor Berke denied any inappropriate contact ... (click for more)

Case Handled Like Any Other?

It is interesting that Chief Fletcher would deem the handling of the Mayor's encounter as typical or normal. Is the Chief asking the public to believe that all misdemeanor domestic violence arrests include a 4-hour taped interrogation, and delayed reporting after a visit to the Chief’s house. Of course, we believe that Chief Fletcher. April Eidson (click for more)

Roy Exum: Christian Schools Bully, Too

Earlier this week, after I shared a story about bullying written by a very brave mother, it opened a floodgate of emails from parents and students who have been forced to endure such madness in our elementary, junior and senior high schools. Discipline is the No. 1 problem in our schools. Because of it, or because of a lack of it, no wonder our children cannot achieve all that ... (click for more)