Staff Editorial

Students’ hopes rest with Khator at board meeting

University of Houston President and Chancellor Renu Khator met with the editorial staff of the Houston Chronicle last week and said she would press the UH Board of Regents not to increase tuition.

“We just made this commitment that we’re not going to do it,” Khator said. “To say that we can hold the line for a year, it tests your character.”

Karen Clarke, associate vice chancellor for university relations for the UH System, joined Khator in the meeting.

While this news is a welcome rest from all the increases in fees and tuition, mandatory and otherwise, Khator still has to convince the board of regents when they meet today. This puts things in perspective. Khator easily takes the flak for rising tuition and costs at UH — she’s the president after all — but the board of regents wields power as well.

Although Khator is the university chancellor, she is also like a CEO, says Clarke, and she’s done her homework. Khator unveiled several documents at the editorial meeting including a 2012 president’s report, accountability report and UH system performance report that show exactly where UH stood a year ago, and aside from minor setbacks in research awards and annual giving, performance has been good.

We’re not letting Khator off the hook, however. For example, she wants at least 25 percent of enrolled students to live on campus. As of now, 16 percent of more than 39,000 students sleep in an on-campus bed. Adding beds will be one component, but we strongly suggest Khator think about the need for other amenities.

There are no 24-hour dining services on campus and barely any 24-hour study areas. If 25 percent lived on campus now, that would mean about 10,000 students in the tiny lounge dangling from the M.D. Anderson Memorial Library, and 10,000 students surviving on crackers and soda when the cafeterias close for the holidays and spring break. UH will have to be a home if it wants students to treat it like one.

The board of regents meets today with an agenda for business. We trust Khator has an agenda for students.


  • What’s more clear with Employment report is that when it comes to joblessness, having a college degree is more important than ever that is why we need the help of High Speed Universities now

  • The lack of 24 hour dining and study areas is indeed a serious one and graduate students are the most affected every year.

  • Im beginning to change my mind about 24 hour dining space and even study space. The call for both has been louder lately with more students speaking up and now TDC speaking up. Let's get it done. What are some of the ideas floating around out there? If we begin this discussion now, it's very possible (in my mind) to have something in place by fall. Would love to hear from you all. Post on here or email [email protected]

  • it really is tough being a resident here. i love it here but I don't have a car and i'm from the opposite side of the state. with no place to go during spring break, it was tough to find a complete meal at a decent hour. it also feels like a waste of money because the meal plan is required (requirement makes sense), but most places are closed early and on weekends. surviving off of chips and soda from vending machines? terrible. please do something.

  • Why dosen’t Khator live on campus then? Maybe she wants to pay 860 Dollars for a 314 sqft. place at the cougar village. UH is not student-friendly. What a rip-off. I’m sure she’d enjoy living in an overpriced apartment in the 3rd ward ( out of all the places here in Houston ).
    Let alone the fact that you can not get anywhere without a car. I have first hand experience since my car was totaled and I had to ride the bus. Luckily, I live in Montrose, but a 12 min. car ride to school became a 50 minute trip.
    Also, if I remember correctly, a meal at the UH dining hall costs 7,50 Dollars. That’s 24 Dollars a day just for food. Yes, I do remember that people usually eat 3 times a day. Apparently, UH thinks they only eat once a day. I’m a student, not a senior official at the White House. I can’t spend that kind of money. Of course there’s also no alternative on campus. Only the student run cafe is a LITTLE cheaper, but they are only open 3 days a week for 2.5 hours I believe. If I have class during that time, I can’t even go there. At UH, you really do have to live off the vending machines. At least that won’t cost me an arm and a leg.

  • lol @ khator caring about students.
    not raise tuition for a whole year?!?!
    you mean you're going to tell your friends to temporarily suspend the skyrocketing prices of college for a year?
    how persuasive are you going to be? are you going to offer up some of your insane salary to help fill the gap in funding? but you already have so many plans on how to spend your millions!!
    how about the regents sell some of their summer homes, since i'm sure they all care so much about the students too. oh but wait, they earned them with their hard "work" so F the students.
    plus i'm sure they remember what it was like when they had to work a full time job (jk – they were probably all born into money) making good money with hardly any experience (forget unpaid internships) to completely pay for their very cheap tuition/books and have zero debt.

    they know exactly what we're going through.
    and if not, the student regent may make a peep and someone may pat her head – so that could help us out.

    rising tuition costs are inevitable. in the information age, with virtually infinite information freely available at the library/internet, it's a wonder we don't pay much more for all this great info we get here at UH.

    we should just be glad that lower-middle class students won't be able to afford a degree and compete for our jobs. isn't that what college is really all about?

  • Khator doesn’t care about students, she just wants UH to be where UT Austin and A&M are so she has something extra to slap on her resume.

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