Audio: How the UT System spends portions of its $20 billion endowment

The UT System's endowment of nearly $20 billion makes it one of the nation's wealthiest educational institutions. How much of it goes to student financial aid?

The University of Texas System owns 100 acres of land south of the Texas Medical Center in Houston. Michael Stravato for The Texas Tribune

It’s no secret that college is getting more expensive – or that America’s student debt has erupted into a full-on crisis. But it’s not just loans that are putting pressure on Americans seeking an education. This segment, produced by Reveal from the Center for Investigative Reporting and PRX — and reported by The Texas Tribune's Matthew Watkins and Neena Satija of the Tribune and Reveal — explains that students face a variety of obstacles, from rising tuition rates to hard-line immigration laws.

A little over a year ago, administrators tapped Bill McRaven, a former four-star admiral, as chancellor of the University of Texas System. McRaven immediately proposed a series of “quantum leaps” that he promised would put UT’s enormous endowment to good use – and make it “the envy of every system in the nation.” Several huge purchases later (including a land parcel worth more than $215 million), questions still linger about whether students are benefiting from McRaven’s sweeping changes.

Reveal is a weekly radio program produced by The Center for Investigative Reporting and PRX. For more, check out their website and subscribe to their podcast.

Disclosure: The University of Texas System has been a financial supporter of The Texas Tribune. A complete list of Tribune donors and sponsors is available here.

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