Top 10 events from 2009 to 2012
December 17, 2012
10. COOG Radio
COOG Radio — a completely student-ran radio station — officially launched online on August 29, 2011. The station tries to focus on songs that are not mainstream while also trying not to play songs from the Top 40 during the past five years.
COOG Radio is the University’s first and only student-ran station and gives students who are interested in a radio career an opportunity to practice their craft.
9. James Franco says no to UH, again
The UH Creative Writing Program attracted celebrities. Actor James Franco was one of the 20 applicants accepted into the creative writing program in April for the fall semester. Franco deferred attendance until Fall 2012 but again couldn’t attend because of his busy schedule.
8. TicketCity Bowl
UH cruised past Penn State 30-14 in the TicketCity Bowl on Jan. 2, 2011. UH quarterback Case Keenum was named MVP of the game after throwing for 532 yards and three touchdowns. The Cougars out-gained the Nittany Lions 600 yards to 306.
The Cougars set a school record for wins with 13 in 2011. It was also Tony Levine’s first game as head coach.
7. UH surpasses $100 million in research awards
On the way to becoming a Tier One Research University, there were milestones that preceded it. UH broke the $100 million ceiling in research awards for the fiscal year 2009, announced on Aug. 27, 2009. UH topped $104 million as 314 faculty members received research awards.
The number rose from $87 million in research awards the previous year.
6. President’s Committee on the Arts and the Humanities recognizes Blaffer
The Young Artist Apprenticeship Program — an art workshop for teenagers from neighboring Houston Independent School District high schools organized by the Blaffer Art Museum — received $10,000 from President’s Committee on the Arts and the Humanities.
The YAAP won a Coming Up Taller award and in a ceremony at the White House on Nov. 4, 2009, First Lady Michelle Obama presented two representatives with a plaque, recognizing their honor.
5. Energy Expansion
With a $110 million expansion of its Energy Research Park and energy curriculum, UH is positioning itself to serve the Houston market, which is big in the energy sector.
The school added programs that attempt to train future professionals in a variety of energy fields, including sub sea engineering and wind power. The school now has the fifth sub sea engineering master’s program in the nation. UH President Renu Khator made these programs a priority because of the dominant role of the energy industry in Houston. The University purchased the 15 buildings comprising of the ERP for $27 million in 2009 after leasing them for years. During August 2012, the renovation of Building 1 of the ERP was completed and several departments moved in full time on Aug. 27, 2012.
4. College GameDay visits Houston
On Nov. 11, 2011, ESPN’s College GameDay visited the University for the first time as the Cougars prepared to face SMU. UH, ranked No. 11 at the time, was in line for a Bowl Championship Series and defeated SMU 37-7 in front of a sold out crowd at Robertson Stadium.
Quarterback Case Keenum became the National Collegiate Athletic Association’s all-time completions leader and the second player in NCAA history to throw for at least 4,000 yards in three separate seasons in the game.
3. Cougar Village, Cougar Woods, Calhoun Lofts open — part of ambitious Master Plan
The University added variety to the way students lived on campus in an attempt to change the culture and the notion that UH is a commuter school.
Cougar Village opened as a residential facility for freshmen students during Fall 2009. Calhoun Lofts — originally planned as luxury housing for graduate students — opened a year later for the fall semester of 2010.
Cougar Woods dining hall served its first students on Oct. 1. It offers more options than the previous Oberholtzer Hall and gives more incentive to live on campus.
2. New stadium approved by students
In what was the largest turnout for a student referendum in UH history, students overwhelming voted to increase student fees by $45 to help fund the construction of a new football stadium and to renovate Hofheinz Pavilion on Jan. 31 to Feb. 1.
The referendum passed by 73.9 percent as 9,923 — 26.1 percent of the student body — voted; 7,334 of them were in favor of the fee increase, 2,589 against the measure.
1. Tier One research
In January 2009, the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching named UH as a top research university in the nation, or Tier One.
UH became the third public university in Texas to be named a Tier One university. UH announced this on Jan. 18, 2011. The University of Texas and Texas A&M are the only two other public institutions in the state to receive the Tier One distinction.
The rankings are updated every five years, and the criteria include research expenditures, number of doctorate degrees awarded and the size of the university’s research staff.