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Saturday, November 28, 2020

Staff Editorial

Administrators should not forget UH’s origin


Days after the graduation ceremonies, President and Chancellor Renu Khator announced a reorganization of the Office of Academic Affairs and that she would begin making personnel and administrative changes.

Since then, the inner workings of UH’s administration has been nipped and tucked, and the transformation is not finished yet.

The changes come after a long process of consideration. In August 2012, the University began a relationship with Pappas Consulting Firm in order to decide what needs to change and — more importantly — how. As of May 20, the firm was paid more than $211,300 that was funded from private contributions, said Provost Paula Short.

As a staff, we agree on the mantra “If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.” Except something seems to be broken at UH. The six-year graduation rate at UH is lower than the average. According to UH Institutional research, the six-year graduation rate of first-time, full-time students was 46 percent in 2012, while the nation averaged 58 percent in 2011, according to the National Center for Educational Statistics. This data excludes transfer and part-time students.

There is something amiss and Khator is trying to find out what that is and fix it. We believe that rearranging the University at its core is a valid option for improvement at this time.

One thing we would like the administration to remember when making changes to the system is who UH represents.

As Hugh Roy Cullen, who gave about $70 million total to the University, said, “I have only one condition in making this gift. The University of Houston must always be a college for working men and women and their sons and daughters.”

Despite graduation rates and how UH looks on paper, the administration needs to keep that as an integral part of its decision-making process.

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