Dr. Melissa Shivers

 Assistant Vice Chancellor for Student Life &  Strategic InitiativesPhoto of Dr. Melissa Shivers


Hometown –  Commerce, Georgia

What brought you to UT?  Great career decision and Knoxville would be the largest city that I’ve lived AND worked during my 17-year career.

What is your favorite book or current reading? I love reading and have so many favorites. A few that I am reading now are “The Energy Bus: 10 rules to fuel your life, work, and team with positive energy” by John Gordon, “Mom & Me & Mom ” by Maya Angelou, and “Bossy Pants” by Tina Fey.

What is the best advice you have ever received?  The best advice I’ve ever received  — “If it’s not your story to tell, don’t tell it! Individuals are the authors of their own story and who am I to rewrite history.”

Who has had the biggest influence on your life and why has that person played such an influential role? Without a doubt my mom is the most influential person in my life. As a mother of two young women, my mother worked two or three jobs to ensure we had everything we needed. The type of love and sacrifice she demonstrated to us took incredible strength and courage. My mom is kind, funny, hard working, genuine, and most of all she is dedicated to her faith. If I could be one-tenth of the woman she is, that would be enough.

What is one thing you would like people to know about you? I received my Bachelor of Science degree in Communication Arts with an emphasis in Broadcast Journalism. During college a friend and I hosted our own radio show, The Trap, from 9pm – 11pm on Tuesday and Thursday. This is where I found my passion for radio and television broadcasting! I Prior to my life in higher education, I was a broadcast journalist who worked for Channel 6 in Augusta, Georgia. My goal was to serve at the desk alongside Stuart Scott on ESPN but they took to long to give me a call! J-

What are the top three items on your bucket list? 1) Attend a national championship game in Pasadena, California- I have no concern about who’s playing; 2) Attend the NCAA Final Four and championship game (again, zero concern about who’s playing); and 3) Spend two weeks in Hawaii and two weeks in the Cayman Islands!

What is your favorite location on campus? It’s actually Neyland Stadium and Thompson Boling Arena— where the VOLS play!