Alumnus General Cone visits campus

Sarah Lawson

According to the highest ranking alumnus in the U.S. army, four-star general Robert W. Cone, UT is changing the world through its research studies and by implementing that research in the field.

Cone visited UT this Saturday with his wife to return home to visit one of his alma maters. Cone landed in Austin at 1:30 p.m. and was escorted around campus by ROTC professor Lt. Col. Joseph Kopser. While on campus Cone visited with President Powers, the football team and head football coach Mack Brown.

“I personally believe that all the academic programs here are headed in the right direction. They will change the world,” Cone said. “All of the professors, faculty and students are top notch. Thank you for doing what you do.”

UT spokesman Gary Susswein said Gen. Cone has fulfilled UT’s motto because of the high rank he has achieved — Cone has been able to change the world. After Gen. Cone attended UT he taught at West Point from 1987 until 1990, Kopser said. Kopser also said Gen. Cone’s former teacher, Johnny Butler, is now a professor at McCombs School of Business, and in charge of the IC2 institute. Butler was a professor of sociology when Cone attended UT.

According to a list recently published by GI Jobs magazine, UT is ranked as military friendly. Cone agreed with this statement.

“I graduated from West Point in 1979, then from UT with a master’s degree in sociology in 1987 studying under Butler. When I was here then it was military friendly and it still is,” Gen. Cone said.

Architecture freshman Esther Kuo said Kopser and Cone were correct in their analysis of UT’s military friendliness.

“I think UT has a great deal of military acceptance. I mean, you never see any of the cadets being disrespectful or being disrespected. It is a harmonious campus,” Kuo said.

Gen. Cone said UT’s current programs are exceeding his expectations.

“There is a lot of great technology, energy saving products and technology, research — I just got a briefing from Kopser about the research — that is going on here,” Gen. Cone said. “There is robots networking, a lot of things that are especially important to what we in the military do. Great things are really going on here.”

Cone said he was impressed with Butler’s work with entrepreneurship at UT. Butler is the Herb Kelleher Chair in entrepreneurship for the Red McCombs School of Business. Butler focuses on research in the areas of organizational behavior and entrepreneurship. Cone said he was impressed that 24 years after his time at UT, the University still maintains a highly-effective academic, military friendly setting.

“I hope to continue to see the great things out of this school that I have already seen,” Cone said.