UT Knoxville chancellor steps back from graduation ceremonies after ‘close contact’ with COVID-19


UT Knoxville Chancellor Donde Plowman showing no symptoms

KNOXVILLE, Tenn (WATE) — UT Knoxville Chancellor Donde Plowman is in quarantine after learning she is a close contact of someone who tested positive for the virus, according to the university.

Plowman has no symptoms and went ‘immediately for a COVID test’ after learning of the contact around 9:30 am Thursday.

On Friday, Tennessee Director of Athletics Phillip Fulmer announced he had tested positive for COVID-19. Plowman entered her quarantine after she was in a meeting with Fulmer on Monday. She has since tested negative, according to a university spokesperson.

The university had said the chancellor attended a small graduation ceremony for two students before finding out that she was a close contact.

Provost John Zomchick and other academic officials will preside over all commencement ceremonies through the weekend.

“She will continue to lead the campus and engage by Zoom while in quarantine,” a press release states.

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