STAFF EDITORIAL: Additional progress toward tier one underway
UH is officially a significant step further in its trek toward flagship status.
Gov. Rick Perry expanded access to state research funds for seven additional Texas institutions when he signed HB 51 at The University of Texas at Dallas Wednesday.
The implications for UH are significant, as it and six other universities in Texas are designated as ’emerging research universities’ under the bill. This status not only allows more research funding to flow to UH through the Texas school fund, but also provides a plan for becoming a top-tier institution.
President Renu Khator is one of several university administrators who have been actively lobbying and testifying in the state Legislature to shepherd this and other bills through to bolster our progress to tier one.
The selection of Mack B. Rhoades IV as athletics director is another major step for Khator’s vision for the University as she stated upon taking office. Her efforts have proven tireless and have yielded significant fruit in the passage of this bill.
The bill has further implications for UH by providing funds for Hurricane Ike repair and additional incentives for institutions that confer degrees on at-risk populations, for the number of degrees and increase in degrees awarded.
UH’s mandate, and that of H.R. Cullen in his initial gifts to the University, was to serve the Houston area. The idea was to build community leaders through giving them a world-class education and having them extend the benefits of that education through the community, lifting up others to excellence by example.
Perry’s signing of HB 51 is a parallel to this idea of extending community support to those reaching for excellence. UH has been diligently working toward recognition of its efforts, and still holds true to the idea of academic challenge and the importance of original research in all academic areas. This bill is a significant element in that journey.
We would like to thank Perry and the Legislature for paving the way for the advancement and repair in Texas’ higher education institutions.