Official newspaper of The University of Texas at Austin

The Daily Texan

Official newspaper of The University of Texas at Austin

The Daily Texan

Official newspaper of The University of Texas at Austin

The Daily Texan

All content by Andrew Zhang
News desk editor, former senior reporter promises to never call UT at 12 a.m. again

News desk editor, former senior reporter promises to never call UT at 12 a.m. again

Andrew Zhang May 4, 2021

There’s a scene in Pixar’s “Soul” that shows an animated depiction of people in “the zone,” where people following their passions — playing the piano, winning a basketball game, whatever...


UT opens for spring semester during COVID-19 surge in Austin area

Andrew Zhang January 22, 2021

Campus partially opened Tuesday for the start of a second semester during the COVID-19 pandemic as Austin faces a surge of cases and hospitalizations. Austin has entered Stage 5 of coronavirus guidelines,...


UT Health Austin receives, prepares to distribute 2,925 doses of COVID-19 vaccine

Andrew Zhang December 14, 2020

UT Health Austin received 2,925 doses of the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine Monday to be distributed to frontline UT health care workers as part of the first Texas shipment in a nationwide vaccination effort.  Starting...


Fall 2020: Looking Forward

Campus UT will offer almost 60% of spring classes online with a similar number of courses having online, hybrid and in-person modality as in the fall semester. Students living in residence halls may...


Fall 2020: Looking Back

University The UT System Board of Regents unanimously approved Jay Hartzell as permanent president of the University on Sept. 21 after he served as interim president since June 1.  Campus Due...


‘A lack of respect for our profession:’ Advisers express frustration over lack of voice in grading policy changes

Andrew Zhang and Anna Canizales December 3, 2020

UT advisers are struggling to implement recent grading policy changes, which they say are a sign of the University’s continued disregard for their contributions on campus. “The recent and...


Q&A: UT-Austin President Jay Hartzell on COVID-19, his salary, grading changes, ‘The Eyes of Texas’

Andrew Zhang December 3, 2020

Editor’s note: This interview has been condensed for clarity. The full interview can be viewed here.  As the end of the fall semester approaches, The Daily Texan sat down with UT President...


UT administration approves modified pass/fail expansion for fall 2020, spring 2021, diverges from Faculty Council vote

Andrew Zhang November 25, 2020

Undergraduates can pass/fail three classes across the fall 2020 and spring 2021 semesters and still count them toward degree requirements, the interim executive vice president and provost said in a campuswide...


UT-Austin closes Commons Conference Center and Café at J.J. Pickle Research Campus, leaving employees in limbo

Andrew Zhang November 25, 2020

UT closed the Commons Conference Center and Café at the J.J. Pickle Research Center indefinitely Nov. 13 because of the COVID-19 pandemic’s impact on operations, though the café hopes...


UT System Board of Regents approves $1.25M UT-Austin presidential salary, construction projects funding

Andrew Zhang November 24, 2020

UT President Jay Hartzell will earn a $1.25 million annual salary, which the UT System Board of Regents approved during a two-day board meeting ending Thursday.  Despite one UT staff member calling...


UT Faculty Council passes resolution supporting fall 2020 pass/fail, Q-drop expansion

Andrew Zhang November 23, 2020

The UT Faculty Council passed a resolution allowing fall 2020 undergraduate classes to be taken as pass/fail courses and count toward degree requirements during an emergency meeting Monday morning. The...

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COVID-19 pandemic accelerates across US, Texas, Austin as holidays approach

Andrew Zhang November 20, 2020

COVID-19 hospitalizations, deaths and case numbers continue to climb nationally and locally, causing worry for some UT students as they look toward the holiday season. Texas surpassed 1 million COVID-19...


UT-Austin students react to drawn-out 2020 presidential elections, Texas staying red

Andrew Zhang November 13, 2020

UT students kept their eyes glued to their televisions and cell phones on election night, waiting for the results determining the next president of the United States. However, the race would not be called...


UT-Austin fires chemical engineering professor for complaint of him kissing colleague on lips

Andrew Zhang November 13, 2020

Trigger warning: This article references an alleged sexual misconduct violation. UT-Austin terminated chemical engineering professor emeritus Adam Heller as a research professor Sept. 1 after he...


UT-Austin student governance petitions for fall 2020, spring 2021 pass/fail expansion

Andrew Zhang November 10, 2020

UT Student Government, the Senate of College Councils and the Graduate Student Assembly have asked the University and Faculty Council to reestablish grading policies from the spring semester because of...


UT-Austin community petitions to restart Vietnamese language classes

Andrew Zhang November 6, 2020

Although Vietnamese is the third-most spoken language in Texas, UT has not offered classes for the language since spring 2010. Some community members want the classes back on the course schedule, as a...

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Incumbent Rep. Roger Williams fends off second challenge from Julie Oliver in TX-25 House race

Andrew Zhang November 4, 2020

Republican incumbent Roger Williams won his fifth term to the U.S. House of Representatives for Texas’ 25th Congressional District on Tuesday night, fending off challenger Democrat Julie Oliver,...


UT-Austin social work community pushes back on now-rescinded rule allowing LGBTQ+, disability discrimination

Andrew Zhang November 3, 2020

UT social work students and professors opposed a now-rescinded rule that would have allowed social workers in Texas to turn away clients because of their sexual orientation, gender identity or disability...


UT-Austin will offer nearly 60% of spring 2021 classes online, analysis shows

Andrew Zhang October 27, 2020

Nearly 60% of classes in the spring 2021 course schedule are remote, according to an analysis of the spring course schedule by The Daily Texan. Of the more than 10,300 class sections UT lists on the...


UT-Austin students forgo mail-in ballots, travel home to cast 2020 election votes

Andrew Zhang October 23, 2020

During the primary elections in March, Alyssa Crosby sent her application for an absentee ballot far in advance. When she called the election clerk in her home of Tarrant County, they said they never received...


Longhorn Band lacks ‘necessary instrumentation’ to play ‘The Eyes of Texas,’ will not attend Baylor football game

Andrew Zhang October 21, 2020

Update as of 10/21 at 8:05 p.m.: In a message Wednesday evening, University President Jay Hartzell said the Longhorn Band was never expected to play at the game this weekend. He said “The Eyes...


UT-Austin asked professors how the fall semester is going. Here’s what some of them said.

Andrew Zhang October 19, 2020

UT administered an anonymous survey to instructors at the beginning of September asking how the fall semester was going and what issues they encountered. Out of 2,596 faculty teaching this fall, 1,223...


Department of Homeland Security proposes fixed end dates, changes international student, scholar visa process

Athena Hawkins and Andrew Zhang October 19, 2020

The Department of Homeland Security proposed a rule establishing fixed end dates on student visas, which would likely limit international student programs and post-graduation opportunities, according to...


UT-Austin students march against police brutality in Nigeria in #EndSARS protest

Andrew Zhang October 17, 2020

Dozens of students gathered to protest police brutality in Nigeria in a march from campus to the Texas Capitol building Friday afternoon. Protest organizer Angie Adeyemo said she and the African Students...


Breakout rooms generate mixed reactions for UT-Austin student learning experience

Andrew Zhang October 16, 2020

Professors are using Zoom breakout rooms for online class activities and discussions, but students are divided on how productive the learning strategy is. On Zoom, professors can create breakout rooms...


UT-Austin enforced 6 out of 10 COVID-19 safety provisions at UTEP football game, Austin Public Health says

Andrew Zhang October 9, 2020

UT-Austin enforced six out of 10 COVID-19 safety plan provisions at the football season opener versus UT-El Paso, according to a recent report released by Austin Public Health. According to the report,...


UT-Austin professor opinions divided on fall semester, September faculty survey says

Andrew Zhang October 9, 2020

A majority of instructors said classes were going “very well” in an anonymous UT survey about professor concerns, instructional progress and course issues administered to faculty Sept. 2-6. The...


UT-Austin faculty member charged with 5 counts of possession of child pornography

Andrew Zhang October 6, 2020

Content warning: This article contains multiple explicit references to child pornography and sexual violence. McCombs School of Business faculty member Mario Villarreal has been charged with five counts...


UT-Austin announces spring semester approach, proactive community test details

Andrew Zhang September 28, 2020

UT will approach the spring semester with a similar plan as the fall, UT President Jay Hartzell said in a campuswide message Monday morning.  The spring semester will have “robust”...


Longhorn Band ‘expected’ to play ‘The Eyes of Texas,’ Fine Arts dean says

Andrew Zhang September 26, 2020

The Longhorn Band will be expected to play “The Eyes of Texas” when it performs, according to a Thursday letter addressed to the band’s directors from Douglas Dempster, the College of...


Protect Texas Together app receives updates, community remains divided on effectiveness

Andrew Zhang September 25, 2020

The Protect Texas Together application has generated mixed reviews from the UT community as the app’s development team adds features. Released in August, the app allows students, faculty and staff...


Students living off campus worry about COVID-19 safety as residences host in-person events

Andrew Zhang September 25, 2020

Some UT students living off campus are concerned about their health as some residences host in-person events during the pandemic. The city of Austin has issued ordinances restricting gatherings to 10...


UT-Austin graduation rates top 70%, highlighted by gains among Black, Hispanic, first-generation students

Andrew Zhang and Anna Canizales September 22, 2020

UT graduation rates for 2020 hit record highs, with the four-year graduation rate at 72.2% and the six-year graduation rate at 87.6%, according to a Tuesday press release. These metrics increased from...


UT-Austin estimates $152-$162 million in costs related to fall reopening, revenue losses in fiscal year 2020

Andrew Zhang September 22, 2020

UT’s revenue losses and expenditures from COVID-19 could total $152 to $162 million by the end of 2020, according to an Aug. 18 UT Budget Office report obtained by The Daily Texan through the Texas...


UT-Austin a cappella, dance organizations transition to online auditions, rehearsals

Andrew Zhang September 16, 2020

Students in a cappella and dance performance organizations are singing and dancing through Zoom calls and prerecorded videos this fall. Singing and dancing groups usually meet in person to rehearse...


Students demand UT-Austin change COVID-19 reporting policy in residence halls

Andrew Zhang September 15, 2020

Some students are asking UT to change the COVID-19 case notification system in residence halls, which currently informs residents’ primary and secondary contacts who test positive, not the entire...


Pulling double duty: UT-Austin professors take on child care while teaching

Andrew Zhang September 15, 2020

Students enrolled in geography lecturer Sara Diamond’s class this fall may get a chance to hear her 2-year-old daughter call for attention in the background of the Zoom call.  As COVID-19...

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How are UT System institutions screening, testing, tracking COVID-19?

Andrew Zhang September 11, 2020

UT System academic institutions developed individual approaches to decreasing the spread of COVID-19 as they open campus this fall. The Daily Texan gathered information from all the institutions on how...


UT-Austin coronavirus dashboard updated retroactively with 109 new COVID-19 cases

Andrew Zhang September 9, 2020

The UT-Austin COVID-19 Dashboard has been updated retroactively to add 109 cases from off-campus testing sources, according to a text update on the dashboard Wednesday afternoon. The dashboard will...


COVID-19 timeline: Where have cases been reported in housing around UT-Austin’s campus?

Andrew Zhang September 3, 2020

The Daily Texan will regularly update this page with information about COVID-19 cases and clusters in University residence halls and housing near campus.  The Texan has reported 11 cases of...


Behavior Concerns and COVID-19 Advice Line answers community concerns about COVID-19

Andrew Zhang September 3, 2020

The Behavior Concerns and COVID-19 Advice Line is giving advice on COVID-19 concerns, available UT resources and proper behavior during the pandemic for students, faculty and staff. BCCAL, which was...


Six UT-Austin students in on-campus, off-campus dorms test positive for COVID-19

Andrew Zhang September 1, 2020

Two students living on campus and four students in an off-campus residence hall have tested positive for COVID-19, according to a UT spokesperson and emails obtained by The Daily Texan. A resident of...


Three UT-Austin on-campus dorm residents test positive for COVID-19

Andrew Zhang August 31, 2020

Update as of 9/1 at 12 p.m.: One person has tested positive for COVID-19 in Kinsolving Residence Hall, according to an email sent by University Housing and Dining to secondary contacts of the infected...


Resident of off-campus dorm Scottish Rite Dormitory tests positive for COVID-19

Andrew Zhang August 30, 2020

A resident of the Scottish Rite Dormitory, a private off-campus women’s dormitory north of UT’s main campus, has tested positive for COVID-19.  SRD director Mary Mazurek announced the...


UT-Austin students, career services pivot to virtual recruiting

Andrew Zhang August 28, 2020

Career services offices at UT are adapting to virtual job and internship recruitment processes as the coronavirus prevents in-person events. Because the pandemic has caused a recession, students are...

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UT-Austin students discuss reasoning to attend the fall semester remotely from home

Andrew Zhang August 27, 2020

Derek Ji envisioned his senior year at UT as an idyllic “last hurrah” with his college friends — attending football games and absorbing the energy of being a Longhorn before starting...


UT-Austin will enforce violations of coronavirus health guidelines on-campus, but not off-campus

Andrew Zhang August 26, 2020

UT will enforce COVID-19 health guidelines on campus this fall through an online reporting process that could result in punishment from the University. However, off-campus violations will not be enforced...


What’s open, online, closed on campus at UT-Austin this fall?

Andrew Zhang August 24, 2020

Since this semester will look a little different, the Texan has gathered a list of which University services and resources are open, closed or online to help students navigate campus.  Academic...


International students face time zone differences

Andrew Zhang August 24, 2020

This fall, Bhavya Shukla will start her class day as the sun sets. Since Shukla lives in Singapore, which is 13 hours ahead of Austin, her classes will start around 9 p.m. and end around 3 a.m. daily. After...


UT System approves new sexual misconduct, Title IX policies during virtual board meeting

Samantha Greyson and Andrew Zhang August 12, 2020

The UT System Board of Regents approved new systemwide Title IX and sexual misconduct policies to comply with federal Title IX modifications during a virtual meeting Wednesday.  The board updated...


UT System Board of Regents names Jay Hartzell as sole finalist for UT-Austin president

Andrew Zhang August 12, 2020

Editor’s note: This story has been updated to include comments from a UT System press release. The University of Texas System Board of Regents named Interim President Jay Hartzell as the sole...


Student Government, Senate ask UT-Austin, Board of Regents for increased tuition transparency, financial aid clarification

Andrew Zhang August 11, 2020

UT Student Government and the Senate of College Councils released a statement Tuesday asking the University and the UT System Board of Regents to be more transparent about tuition costs. The statement...


COVID-19 pandemic brings uncertainty to teaching certification programs, future teachers

Andrew Zhang August 5, 2020

As the COVID-19 pandemic forces local school districts to restrict visitors and start the school year online, future teachers face uncertainty with their certifications, which require in-person observation...


How does UT’s fall reopening plan compare to those of its peer institutions?

Andrew Zhang July 28, 2020

Universities across the country are navigating reopening amid the COVID-19 pandemic. As a result, schools have pursued different routes to opening their campuses with plans of in-person classes, testing,...


Now-rescinded student visa policy causes uncertainty for UT-Austin international students

Andrew Zhang July 22, 2020

When Milia Daher, a human dimensions of organization senior from Bolivia, first heard that taking online classes would jeopardize her visa status and force her to leave the country, she became filled with...


Students navigate apartment contracts, subleasing amid fall semester and COVID-19 uncertainty

Andrew Zhang July 7, 2020

As classes move online and COVID-19 creates financial uncertainty, some students are trying to get out of their off-campus apartment leases for the upcoming school year. Apartments, unlike on-campus...


ICE rescinds July update for international student visa guidelines during federal lawsuit

Areeba Amer and Andrew Zhang July 6, 2020

Update 7/14 The federal government has decided to allow international students to take all classes online and remain in the United States, rescinding U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement guidance...


International students encounter enrollment, travel issues from COVID-19

Andrew Zhang June 30, 2020

International students are facing uncertainty with their future enrollment at the University as COVID-19 causes embassy closures, flight cancellations and immigration policy changes. These developments...


UT students, employees help track spread of COVID-19 in Austin

Andrew Zhang June 15, 2020

As part of an Austin-area contact tracing initiative, University community volunteers are calling patients with confirmed or suspected cases of COVID-19 to help curb the spread of the new coronavirus. When...


New UT online orientation creates concerns for future students, prompts transition for New Student Services

Andrew Zhang April 23, 2020

Editor’s note: This story is part of The Daily Texan’s coverage of how coronavirus concerns are affecting UT-Austin. Read the rest of our coverage here.Incoming UT students are worried about...


Museum of Color opens in WCP, brings narratives about colorism to forefront

Andrew Zhang March 9, 2020

With culturally significant objects like eyelid tape and hair perm products on display, the Museum of Color illustrated the complex nature of colorism during its opening on Saturday. The Museum of Color...

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UT-Austin students beautify East Austin neighborhood during ‘The Project’

Andrew Zhang March 2, 2020

Armed with paint brushes, gardening tools and hammers, members of the UT community volunteered in St. Johns, an Austin neighborhood, on Saturday as part of The Project, UT’s largest annual day of...

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Liberal Arts Council hosts town hall on possible joint academic program with LBJ School

Andrew Zhang February 27, 2020

Students gathered to voice opinions about a potential undergraduate collaboration between the College of Liberal Arts and the Lyndon B. Johnson School of Public Affairs on Wednesday. The Liberal Arts...


COLA hosts visiting professor, promotes discussion on recent US immigration policies

Andrew Zhang February 17, 2020

A visiting associate professor spoke to the UT community Friday about immigration and American history as a part of the Gender, Race, Indigeneity, Disabilities and Sexuality Studies Initiative. A. Naomi...

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