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The mission of the College of Health Professions is consistent with the mission of the University of Tennessee: that is, to provide the people of Tennessee with access to quality higher education, economic development and enhanced quality-of-life opportunities. The UTHSC mission is to bring the benefits of the health sciences to the achievement and maintenance of human health, with a focus on the citizens of Tennessee and the region, by pursuing an integrated program of education, research, clinical care, and public services. The College educates competent health professionals to provide services that address the health care needs of the people of Tennessee, provide leadership in the respective health professions, contribute to the knowledge bases of the respective health disciplines and promote lifelong learning through continuing education.



The College was founded as the College of Community and Allied Health Professions in 1972 and was later named the College of Allied Health Science. In 2014, the name changed to the College of Health Professions. 

The College serves as an administrative base for allied health programs from a variety of departments and institutions. Initial departments included clinical laboratory sciences (which included programs in medical technology, cytotechnology, histotechnology and blood banking), then within the College of Medicine’s Department of Pathology; dental hygiene, then in the College of Dentistry; medical record administration (now health informatics and information management), then a part of Baptist Memorial Hospital; physical therapy, then within the College of Medicine’s Department of Medicine; and radiologic technology, then within the College of Medicine’s Department of Radiology. Start-up funding for the College came from a Veterans Administration grant. The Departments of Occupational Therapy and Audiology and Speech Pathology (located on the University of Tennessee, Knoxville campus) were later added. The blood banking program was discontinued, and the Department of Radiologic Technology and the histotechnology program were transferred to Southwest Tennessee Community College. The Physician Assistant studies program was added in 2012, but moved to the College of Medicine in 2016.

The College has made a commitment towards a new direction and a renewed purpose to train students and to impact our community, state and nation. After a year of discussion and committee review, the College’s faculty voted overwhelmingly Sept 14. 2018, to adopt the new Strategic Plan (2018-2025) which the College faculty believe will launch us to national prominence. The new Strategic Plan stresses research throughout the curriculum in each program and obtain national research funding for these important efforts. The College will seek resources that will recruit world class researchers, and for the first time as a college, prepare students for research investigations of clinical problems in the Health Professions. The College will strive to grow its clinical outreach efforts, expand its existing training opportunities and add new academic BS, PhD and professional training programs to provide new career choices for students who choose to come to work with world class faculty at UTHSC. The goal of the College is to strive to be the best, but to begin with, it will work hard with all of the alumni and stakeholders  to elevate the national ranking of every program in the college to be in the top 20 (or higher) by 2025.


Last Published: Oct 8, 2018