Friday, July 16, 2004

Boy Disappointed at Knoxville Cancellation
KNOXVILLE, TN - Tom White, a 14 year-old from Arkansas, arrived in Knoxville this week for the annual convention of Advanced Training Institute, a home education program. Expecting to learn how to give the world a new approach to life, imagine his surprise when he learned that the conference had been cancelled. Evidently, after 13 consecutive events at the University of Knoxville, ATI decided to hold their conference elsewhere. "I was a little shocked," admitted White, a polite, fresh-faced lad. "I bought my ticket for this year as soon as we finished When We See Christ last year. No one ever told me the location changed."

White was unable to change his ticket having purchased it using an Internet-based bargain service, so he spent the week recreating the conference to the best of his ability. He slept in non-air-conditioned dorm rooms, dressed in a navy suit despite the 90 degree weather, ate at the campus cafeteria and dashed back to the Thompson-Boling Arena for music practice.

When the week came to an end White professed his renewed faith. "It's like a shot in the arm for me," he said. "Knoxville always does this. I really feel like great things have happened this week."


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