Kylea Boutwell loves that in her role as event manager for the Office of Campus Event Services she gets to help people and solve problems. Every campus event that requires a meeting space must first run through her office for location recommendations and approval.
“I may not always have all the answers, but I pride myself in learning where to go to find those answers,” Boutwell said.
Boutwell graduated from the University of Mississippi in 2012 with a degree in broadcast journalism. She moved to Knoxville in 2014 and began her career at UT as an assistant in the Office of Finance and Administration. Two years later, she moved to the Office of Student Life. Boutwell said those experiences at UT exposed her to both the administrative and student life perspectives in higher education, which prepared her to take on her current role. She will soon celebrate one year in the event manager position.
Boutwell is also working toward a master’s degree in college student personnel. She said many people have impacted her professionally and as a student at UT. Brian Browning, her current supervisor and director of auxiliary and support services, has been a mentor to her from the beginning of her career at UT.
“He was very helpful in my development as a new professional and even now as I’m working toward my master’s,” Boutwell said. “He always asks how classes are and is very interested in how things are going.”
Other influences include Vincent Carilli, her former supervisor and vice chancellor for student life, Dean of Students Shea Kidd Houze, and her coworkers in the Office of Finance and Administration.
When Boutwell is not at work, she might be at a concert at the Bijou Theatre, trekking down the trails in Big South Fork National Park, or trying out a new craft beer at the Casual Pint. She said she has fallen in love with Knoxville since her move here five years ago.
Since coming to UT, she has observed many time-honored traditions. A self-declared “tailgate tradition-er,” Boutwell said her favorite is the Vol Navy.
“Where else can that happen? Where people can just pull their boat right up to the football stadium and tailgate on it?” Boutwell asked. “I just think that’s the coolest thing ever.”
Boutwell is constantly impressed by the level of engagement she sees from the UT community. She sees the Volunteer spirit in students, faculty, and staff across campus. As someone who enjoys helping others, Boutwell sees this spirit as someone being willing to lend a hand in any way they can.
“You see a need and you volunteer to fill it, whether it’s in your job description or not,” Boutwell said. “It’s just wanting to help people, and I have seen that in a lot of areas on campus.”