September 24, 2003

IT'S A BEAUTIFUL DAY, but I had too much work to let me run off to the mountains like last week, so I had to settle for a walk around campus. It's such a beautiful day that it wasn't too bad a second choice.

I tried to really focus on how the campus is different from when I was in college a bit over 20 years ago. Some things aren't that different -- fashions have come full circle in many departments. The student body, which was then only slightly more female than male, is now considerably more so -- I haven't seen numbers, but I've heard that it's more than 60% female and just walking around that looks plausible. And nearly every one of the female students seems to be talking on a cellphone as she walks. (The men seldom are, so I guess the women are talking to one another).

The population is far more diverse. In particular, there are far more asians -- both Americans of asian descent, and in particular actual student-visa asians from China, Thailand, Malaysia, and Indonesia. I suspect that the same trends apply to most universities.

For those who want to see more pictures (and there are generally some Knoxville expats, or UT alumni, who do), click here, here, here and here.