Celebrating Iconic Campus Traditions


Significant moments have been reflected on the Rock for decades. Last year the Rock turned fifty years old and I was tasked with promoting the big anniversary.
I worked with the campus archivist to dig up information on this 97.5-ton hunk of Knox dolomite stone. I was able to write a story that showcased its origins and spanned decades to present day.
You can read the full story on the Tennessee Today website. The story was also used in the Torchbearer alumni magazine.
The local community loves the Rock and local media outlets picked up my story. The Student Government Association hosted a birthday bash for the Rock. A student artist joined the celebration and painted a picture of Smokey’s head in a birthday cap.
On social media, followers shared their favorite memories of the Rock. We found that many people painted it, some proposed to their girlfriends on it, and one even announced their pregnancy on it!

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