• Several UT campuses in south Texas to be combined into one university

    The UT System Board of Regents approved the creation of a new university in south Texas made up by UT-Browsville, UT-Pan American and the Regional Academic Health Center with an accompanied medical school during a meeting Thursday.

    The proposed University of the Americas in the Rio Grande Valley will require approval from the Legislature during the upcoming legislative session.

    The regents also approved $100 million over the next ten years to fund the new university whose administration would be headquartered in McAllen.

    Scott Kelley, executive vice chancellor for business affairs, said the creation of the new university would not affect funding for other universities.

    Funding would come from remaining dollars of the Permanent University Fund, a state endowment funded by the investment of lease sale profits and revenue from production on the land, after corresponding funding has been allocated to existing institutions.

  • UTPD Is searching for a new chief

    University of Texas Police Department Chief Robert Dahlstrom will be retiring in May, and the search is on for his replacement.

    UTPD posted an ad on the University’s Job Search website Saturday for a new chief of police. Dahlstrom has been chief of the department since 2006. He was with the Austin Police Department for 28 years prior to that.

    UT spokesperson Cindy Posey said a committee will be conducting a nationwide search for the new chief, who has many responsibilities within the department.

    According to the job listing, the chief is responsible for “effective operation of the UT Police Department through planning, organizing and directing its activities, assuring that law and order is maintained, that state laws are enforced and that measures are implemented to prevent crime and to protect lives and property.”

    According to the listing, a bachelor’s degree in an appropriate field; 15 years of experience as a police officer, at least five of which are administrative; multiple licenses; excellent verbal and written communication skills and a reputation for honesty, integrity and high ethical conduct are requirements for the position. 

  • Car flips in front yard at Dean Keeton, Beanna Streets

    An SUV drove over a street sign and a bus bench and into a resident’s front yard Monday evening, flipping on to its side in the process.

    The wreck damaged the front porch of the house, located at the corner of Dean Keeton and Beanna Streets. Jenny Jen, resident of the home, said she came outside when she heard the noise. Bystanders Aaron Jernigan and Matt Seay witnessed the crash and Seay said when they went to help, the driver was erratic.

    “He was completely erratic,” Seay said. “He kept screaming about his girlfriend, ‘oh my god, my girlfriend,’ but no one else was in there.”

    Jen said Seay, Jernigan and others broke the back window to pull him out.

    A tow truck pulled the car out of the front yard after flipping it back on to its wheels around 11:15 p.m. Austin Police Department Sgt. Rusty Torres said police have not determined what caused the wreck. He said the driver was the only person injured, and his injuries are not serious.

  • Campus to help students survive finals

    December is approaching, and what students commonly refer to as “hell week” is causing need for campus-wide survival methods.

    The Center for Strategic Advising & Career Counseling, SangerLearningCenter and the School of Undergraduate Studies will present “Surviving Finals 101” Dec. 3 and Dec 4 to prepare students with time management skills, study strategies and how to make healthy decisions as they prepare for finals.

    According to the Associated Press’ 2009 College Stress and Mental Health Poll, 85 percent of 2,200 randomly surveyed students said they feel stressed on a day to day basis.

    UT’s Counseling and MentalHealthCenter notes that while some students do not feel physical symptoms of stress, others often report nausea, muscle tension and rapid heartbeat as initial signs of stress. One reason the center attributes stress to is a lack of sleep, an issue college students may struggle to control as a result of scheduled exams and term papers.

    “Surviving Finals 101” will begin at 5 p.m. Dec. 3 and 6 p.m. Dec. 4. Both sessions will be held in Jester A115.

  • Mexican President to teach at Harvard

    Mexican President Felipe Calderón will be joining Harvard University’s Kennedy School of Government, the school announced Wednesday.

    The announcement comes after months of speculation that Calderón had been in talks with UT officials about a post-presidency teaching position. In August, the Dallas Morning News reported that Calderón and President William Powers Jr. had met twice to discuss the idea of teaching at UT.

    Calderón’s six year term ends this week and he will step into his role at Harvard as the Inaugural Angelopoulos Global Public Leaders Fellow in spring 2013.

    In a Harvard Kennedy School press release, Calderon said he looks forward to using the fellowship to examine his time in office and share his experiences with others at the school.

    “This Fellowship will be a tremendous opportunity for me to reflect upon my six years in office, to connect with scholars and students at Harvard, and to begin work on the important papers that will document the many challenges that we faced, and the policy positions that we developed during my administration,”Calderón said.

    Calderón received a Master’s degree in Public Administration from the Kennedy School in 2000.

    In September, when Calderón was rumored to be a candidate for a teaching position at UT, students and community members interrupted a conference on campus voicing their opposition to the Mexican president.