Tribpedia: Higher Education


There are 38 public universities and 50 community college districts in Texas.

According to the Handbook of Texas Online, a publication of the Texas State Historical Association, the leading public doctorate-granting institutions are the University of Texas and Texas A&M University, followed by the University of Houston, the University of North Texas, Texas Tech University, the University of Texas ...


Interview: Speaker Joe Straus on the Budget and Session

House Speaker Joe Straus
House Speaker Joe Straus

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.

House members discuss changing politics at TribLive event on February 28, 2011
House members discuss changing politics at TribLive event on February 28, 2011

Texas Hispanic Lawmakers Spar Over Race, Education

Protecting education and recognizing that the rapidly growing Hispanic population will gain a major political voice in Texas were themes that emerged Monday afternoon at The Texas Tribune’s day-long “New Day Rising” forum at the University of Texas LBJ School of Public Affairs.

Battle Brewing Over Mandatory Meningitis Vaccine

The U.S. Supreme Court's ruling this week that vaccine manufacturers are protected from lawsuits by parents who believe that vaccines harmed their children is sure to energize anti-immunization advocates working to thwart attempts to expand meningococcal vaccine requirements for college students. Those who want more college students vaccinated say the state should do what it can to combat the disease, which is fast acting, unpredictable and deadly.

State Rep. Dan Branch, R-Dallas
State Rep. Dan Branch, R-Dallas

House Higher Ed Chairman Looks to Boost "Productivity"

For higher education issues, it appears that “productivity” is to this session what “tier one” was to 2009. House Higher Education Chairman Dan Branch, R-Dallas, who two years ago passed landmark legislation establishing a seven-school competition to catapult the state’s next national research university, recently filed a trio of bills aimed at getting more bang for each buck invested in higher ed.