Tribpedia: Higher Education

Sen. Jeff Wentworth, R-San Antonio, prepares to leave the Senate chamber after he tried to generate support for his guns-on-campus bill SB354 on April 11, 2011
Sen. Jeff Wentworth, R-San Antonio, prepares to leave the Senate chamber after he tried to generate support for his guns-on-campus bill SB354 on April 11, 2011

Wentworth Searching for Votes for Campus Carry Bill

State Sen. Jeff Wentworth, R-San Antonio, hoped to bring up his campus carry bill today after a false start on Thursday. But the search for votes is proving more difficult than he anticipated.

Victoria mayor Will Armstrong discusses the University of Houston-Victoria in front of an aerial photo of Victoria.
Victoria mayor Will Armstrong discusses the University of Houston-Victoria in front of an aerial photo of Victoria.

Univ. of Houston-Victoria Looks to Texas A&M System

In January, the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching elevated the University of Houston to its top tier of research universities. But, in the ensuing celebration for this hard-to-achieve accolade, some are feeling left out. An influential band of the 62,500 or so residents of Victoria, home of the University of Houston-Victoria — a smaller, more rural member of the University of Houston System, about 130 miles from the main campus — is leading a movement to part ways with the parent system.

TribWeek: Top Texas News for the Week of 4/4/11

Thanh on the budget standoff between the House and Senate, Ramsey on budget cuts that cost us money, Philpott on Hispanics and redistricting,  Stiles visualizes speed limits by state, Grissom on a liberal social justice organizer who became a conservative hero, M. Smith on even more student social security numbers at risk, Ramshaw on whether family planning equals abortion, Aguilar on what circumcision has to do with citizenship, Murphy on how much Texas university adminstrators are paid, Hamilton on the latest in the higher ed reform saga and Galbraith on Texas energy lessons from the 1970s: The best of our best content from April 4 to 8, 2011.

House Speaker Joe Straus
House Speaker Joe Straus

Interview: Speaker Joe Straus on the Budget and Session

House Speaker Joe Straus was interviewed eariler this week by Jim Henson, director of the Texas Politics Project at the University of Texas at Austin, government prof and half of the Tribune's polling team, about the session so far, the budget, gambling, rewriting state taxes, federal stimulus money and what he thinks about the tempest over research and teaching at the state's top universities.

Rep. Jim Pitts, R-Waxahachie, speaks with Rep. John Otto, R-Dayton, on the House floor during the budget debate.
Rep. Jim Pitts, R-Waxahachie, speaks with Rep. John Otto, R-Dayton, on the House floor during the budget debate.

House Budget Shrinks Spending, Slashes Services

The Texas House started with a $164.5 billion budget and ended with the same total. But lawmakers spent the better part of a weekend making changes inside the budget for 2012-13 before giving it their approval, 98 to 49, late Sunday night. Appropriations Chairman Jim Pitts, R-Waxahachie, called it a draft that will be changed over the next two months. House Speaker Joe Straus told members, "We need to move this bill."

UT Student Leaders Turn Attention Toward Regents

In the fall, with the University of Texas at Austin facing budget cuts, Chelsea Adler, the president of the university's Senate of College Councils, led an effort to establish student run committees to advise the college deans on how best to manage the reductions. She has also been a leader in this spring's "Invest in Texas" campaign to promote UT's value as an investment to state lawmakers. In an interview with the Tribune, she said she will now turn her attention toward the University of Texas System Board of Regents in support of academic research.

Director of  Intellectual Entrepreneurship, Richard Cherwitz, in his home Mar. 23, 2011.
Director of Intellectual Entrepreneurship, Richard Cherwitz, in his home Mar. 23, 2011.

Calls for University "Entrepreneurship" at UT

“The American university is not broken, but it is certainly not reaching its potential in the 21st century,” says Ohio State University President Gordon Gee, who is pushing for universities to take an entrepreneurial approach to education. One of the leaders of that push is Richard Cherwitz, a communications professor at the University of Texas, who claims universities can modernize without sacrificing academic research.

TribWeek: Top Texas News for the Week of 3/21/11

M. Smith on the continuing controversy over Beaumont's school administrators, Tan on the deepening divide over the consequences of the House budget, Hamilton on the latest in the fight over higher ed accountability, Grissom on young inmates in adult prisons, Aguilar on the voter ID end game, Tan and Hasson's Rainy Day Fund infographic, Ramsey on the coming conflict over school district reserves, M. Smith and Aguilar on Laredo ISD's missing Social Security numbers, Galbraith on environmental regulators bracing for budget cuts and Ramshaw on greater scrutiny of neonatal intensive care units: The best of our best content from March 21 to 25, 2011.

John Siber
John Siber

John Silber: The TT Interview

The outspoken former UT dean and Boston University president on higher education's past, present and future — including his opinion of U.S. News & World Report's rankings ("bogus"), Howard Zinn's A People's History of the United States ("incompetent and inaccurate") and online degree programs ("fraudulence").

Gene Powell and Francisco Cigarroa
Gene Powell and Francisco Cigarroa

UT System Reassigns O'Donnell: "We're Listening"

University of Texas System Chancellor Francisco Cigarroa and Board of Regents Chairman Gene Powell told the Tribune today that they are moving quickly to allay the concerns of lawmakers, alumni and others regarding the direction of UT, starting with the reassignment of Rick O'Donnell, a new adviser to the Board of Regents.

TribWeek: Top Texas News for the Week of 3/7/11

Conversations about the coming Hispanic majority and the 82nd session from our New Day Rising symposium, M. Smith on the latest tort reform battle, Galbraith on greater scrutiny of the gas industry, Ramsey on whether lawmakers will cut their own pay and benefits, Ramshaw and Aguilar on what's holding up abortion sonogram legislation, Aguilar on the ag commissioner's controversial new website, Philpott on what $9.8 billion in public education cuts looks like, Hamilton on a snippy exchange of higher ed letters and Grissom on the latest court decision in the Hank Skinner case: The best of our best content from March 7 to 11, 2011.

Ranger College's Closure Threatens Town's Livelihood

News that the state could shutter four community colleges has rattled the rural town of Ranger, whose community college faces closure. Nathan Bernier and Paulo Martins of KUT News look at what the closure could mean for the college — and the town for which it has become something of a lifeline.