Board approves Victoria expansion
At a special meeting Friday, The UH System Board of Regents approved UH-Victoria’s proposal to open its doors to freshmen and sophomores.
Regent Carroll Robertson Ray said the board must consider potential risks involved with the upper-division institution’s plans to extend education to underclassmen.
"I am assuming the greatest risk is that (the students) will not come," Ray said.
UHV President Tim Hudson said the possibility of low freshman and sophomore enrollment rates during its first years as a four-year institution would pose a threat to the school’s finances, but said he is optimistic about the school’s planned recruiting endeavors.
"It will provide a place for the growing state population to attend college," Hudson said. "We believe this will offer students a non-urban four-year option."
The institution’s downward expansion would provide education options for students who may not have planned to continue education beyond high school, Hudson said.
"We hope to identify under-recruited high schools in San Antonio," Hudson said.
UHV has also pledged to raise $250,000 in scholarship funds for incoming freshmen and sophomores.
Ray questioned whether the quality of the students and the education will live up to UH System standards, but Hudson said he felt UHV would meet Systemwide standards, although admission requirements would be different for its student base.
"We will be moderately selective in terms of admissions," Hudson said.
While some regents said UHV’s expansion would detract from the University’s aspiration for flagship status, Regent Lynden Rose said the elevation of the branch to a four-year institution would benefit the System.
"As we as a System embark on ‘Tier 1,’ we should be proud that UHV is working to achieve something greater as well," Rose said.
No additional facilities will be needed for the expansion because the new students will use UHV facilities during traditional, daytime hours while Victoria’s upper-level student base continues using facilities at night.
For each student enrolled at UH from one of the three-county areas of Victory, one-fourth of their tuition will go back to UHV. The legal implications of revenue sharing between UH and UHV are still being explored.
UHV expects to open its doors to its first freshman and sophomores by Fall 2010 if the proposal is approved by the Victoria College Board of Trustees this week.