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 The Daily Texan Editorial Board

Mum’s the word

April 13, 2012

Thursday’s UT System Board of Regents meeting came and went with perhaps the most unwelcome news possible regarding tuition for the next two years: No news at all. The regents’ decision hurls...

Up in smoke

April 12, 2012

The University’s tobacco use policy went up in smoke Wednesday afternoon with an email — with the spelling properly checked — ­declaring that the campus is now 100-percent tobacco-free....

Opening the Gates to a good choice

April 11, 2012

Former Secretary of Defense Robert Gates will deliver the commencement address at graduation this May. Of all Washington D.C. political veterans whom UT officials might pick to set an example for the graduating...

Granting access to education

April 10, 2012

The TEXAS Grant program, not long ago written off as doomed, is undergoing some major reconstruction by the trauma surgeons at the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board. Last year, the Legislature...

Quotes to note: from topography to pornography

April 9, 2012

Editor’s note: From a change in automotive topography to Bibles and pornography, these are among our favorite quotes from the past several days. “When [Bernard] Rapoport took an interest in...

Quotes to Notes: Redistricting to B-On-Time

April 6, 2012

Editor’s note: From redistricting to the state’s B-On-Time loan program, these are among our favorite quotes from the past several days. “There would be very little time before November...

A lack of coordination

April 5, 2012

The state’s critiquer-in-chief, the Sunset Advisory Commission, issued its verdict on the state’s chief higher education overseer — and the results weren’t pretty. Late last month,...

Four years in high gear

April 4, 2012

The University is wasting little time plowing ahead with plans to dramatically increase its four-year graduation rates. Late last month, the College of Liberal Arts sent an email to all of its students...

Finding the way to a VPSA

April 3, 2012

The season started long ago, the stakes as high as ever. The month of March embraced the nationwide competition and whittled the field of more than 64 down to the Final Four. Now we wait to crown a winner. While...

The road to a better code

March 30, 2012

Finally, all is quiet on the Student Government front. The bombs have mercifully stopped falling just short of total devastation — that is, a redo of the entire election. But as students emerged,...

Apology from The Daily Texan Editorial Board

March 29, 2012

Update: The cartoon was taken down from The Daily Texan website.   On Tuesday, a cartoon ran on the Opinion page of The Daily Texan that offended many readers, and we sincerely apologize for our...

Vote for John Lawler and Terrence Maas

March 28, 2012

The Daily Texan Editorial Board endorses John Lawler and Terrence Maas for Student Government president and vice president. The Lawler/Maas campaign has made several pledges to the student body that include...

Tuesday’s editorial cartoon

March 28, 2012

Editor’s note: An editorial cartoon on the Trayvon Martin case that ran Tuesday has generated many responses, several of which appear below: In light of all of the incredibly offensive, racist...

Halt the hatchet to higher education

March 27, 2012

Early last week, Texans for a Conservative Budget, a coalition composed of powerful small-government proponents, released a proposal containing solutions for the current state budget deficit. But the proposed...

Quotes to note: mistakes in high and low places

March 26, 2012

Editor’s note: From the Republican presidential candidates to efficiency in higher education, these are among our favorite quotes from the past several days. “You’ll have the opportunity...

Lessons from a divorce

March 22, 2012

Earlier this month, the UT System launched a Web page for Texans to track the split between UT-Brownsville and Texas Southmost College, both located in the Lower Rio Grande Valley. The page offers a healthy...

Re-enfranchising students

March 21, 2012

Texas Attorney General Greg Abbott has been busy lately. With the redistricting battle temporarily settled — though the final outcome is still uncertain — the attorney general’s office...

0320VPcartoon

Elections for sale

March 20, 2012

On Monday, Dean of Students Soncia Reagins-Lilly announced that previously disqualified candidates Madison Gardner and his running mate Antonio Guevara will be put back on the ballot for the Student Government...

Quotes to Note: Sovereignty over the state and women

March 19, 2012

Editor’s note: From all of Greg Abbott’s lawsuits to the rejection of the state voter ID law, these are among our favorite quotes from the past several days. “Don’t think I let...

Sink or swim

March 9, 2012

The Daily Texan and Texas Student Media, the organization that oversees the paper’s budget, confront a projected budget deficit of $175,000 for 2012. Former TSM director Gary Borders resigned Feb....

Improving the nontraditional transition

March 8, 2012

The Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board recently released a report outlining updates to its long-term goal of aligning Adult Basic Education (ABE) with postsecondary education. ABE seeks to supplement...

The Longhorn Not-work

March 7, 2012

The half-year birthday for the network that was supposed to change all networks came and went without the celebration many had anticipated back in August. At that time, the biggest concern on the campus...

Horns up/horns down

March 6, 2012

Horns up: Austin bans single-use bags from retail stores Early Friday morning, the Austin City Council unanimously voted to ban single-use shopping bags at Austin-area retail stores. The ban will affect...

Quotes to note: sexual harassment a mounting issue

March 5, 2012

From the recent city council decision to ban disposable bags to Ted Nugent’s endorsement of Mitt Romney for president, these are among our favorite quotes from the past several days. “The...

The K-12 connection

March 2, 2012

After the release of the final report from the task force on 4-year graduation rates, many leaders throughout the state are expressing doubts about the mania surrounding on-time graduation. The report...

Quotes to Note: Redistricting

March 1, 2012

Earlier this week, federal judges in San Antonio released interim maps for Texas’ congressional districts. The approval of the new maps would allow Texas to hold its primary elections on May 29....

Uniting Texas in shame

February 29, 2012

On Tuesday, a Travis County judge issued a temporary restraining order against UT, postponing the elections for student body president and vice president for at least two weeks. The decision came after...

Endorsements of candidates for student-wide elections

February 29, 2012

Editor’s note: The Daily Texan Editorial Board sent questionnaires to Student Government candidates running for executive alliance, University-wide, college-wide, University Co-op Board of Directors...

Quotes to Note: From UT to the Attorney General

February 28, 2012

From the attorney general’s response to the president’s contraception mandate to the governor’s defense of his compensation, the following quotes are among the best from the last few...

Survivor: Student Government Edition

February 27, 2012

Voter turnout in this year's Student Government elections may end up being the lowest in decades. Of course, that may have something to do with the fact that the contest is beginning to look less like...

Demanding answers about sudden resignation

February 24, 2012

On Feb. 8, then-Texas Student Media director Gary Borders announced his resignation, a move that came as a surprise to TSM board members and student staffers alike. Juan Gonzalez, the outgoing vice president...

Quotes to note: candidates aim to broaden SG’s impact

February 23, 2012

On Friday, The Daily Texan Editorial Board interviewed each team of candidates running for Student Government president and vice president. The following quotes are from our interview with executive alliance...

Quotes to note: Concrete proposals define campaign

February 22, 2012

“They’re trying to do this to further their political careers. We’re not trying to be senators someday; we’re just trying to be here for the students.” — Lund on how...

The punitive approach to improving graduation rates

February 21, 2012

UT students received an email from President William Powers Jr. on Wednesday afternoon announcing the culminating report of the Undergraduate Graduation Task Force. The report, authored by Liberal Arts...

Clarifying Madison Gardner’s position on domestic partner benefits

February 21, 2012

Editor's Note: Below is a copy of Madison Gardner’s 2010 endorsement questionnaire, in which he sought The Daily Texan’s endorsement for University-wide representative. In light of today’s...

Quotes to note: SG candidates pledge to unite Texas

February 20, 2012

Editor’s note: On Friday, The Daily Texan Editorial Board interviewed each team of candidates running for Student Government president and vice president. The following quotes are from our interview...

Quotes to Note: From the Red River Rivalry to redistricting

February 16, 2012

From the Red River Rivalry to redistricting, the following quotes are among the best from the last few days. “Some of the recommendations will have a longer time of implementation inevitably, but...

Demanding more from the candidates

February 15, 2012

While you were studying, enjoying “Dollar Beer Night” or sleeping soundly last night, they were strategically planning how to attract students’ attention on the West Mall with swag and...

The war of the maps

February 14, 2012

As the Republican presidential primary somehow continues to smolder, the continuing redistricting battle between the state of Texas and various Texas minority advocacy groups is making Texas voters less...

Quotes to note: interpreting the sudden smoke signals

February 13, 2012

On Friday, the University announced that it will review its tobacco use policy to ensure that it complies with a new mandate from the Cancer Prevention and Research Institute of Texas. Two weeks ago, CPRIT...

Quotes to Note: February 10, 2012

February 10, 2012

“If it’s halftime in America, I’m fearful of what the final score’s going to be if we let this president start the second half as a quarterback.” — Texas Gov. Rick...

A season of shallow rhetoric

February 9, 2012

A strange creature exists on the UT campus, emerging once every year in traffic-clogging numbers only to vanish two weeks later. Unlike certain campus squirrels, seeing one is unlikely to help you on your...

Altering the Texas DREAM Act

February 8, 2012

Late last month, the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board voted unanimously to update the state law that grants in-state tuition to undocumented students attending college. The rule change would require...

Increasing student representation in city politics

February 8, 2012

Austin’s 2012 Charter Revision Committee approved a plan at its final meeting last week that could mean increased representation for students on the City Council. The committee, charged with drafting...

The partial budget picture

February 7, 2012

In March, the UT System Board of Regents will likely raise tuition for the 2012-13 and 2013-14 academic years, per President William Powers Jr.’s recommendation. In December, Powers forwarded to...

Quotes to note: Occupy Austin

February 6, 2012

Editor’s note: From developments in the Occupy movement to Willie Nelson’s endorsement of Mayor Lee Leffingwell, the following quotes are among the best from the last few days. “While...

Shea’s Rebellion

February 3, 2012

Austin Mayor Lee Leffingwell has a new challenger in former City Council member Brigid Shea. Shea is a co-founder of Save Our Springs, an environmental group that advocates the protection of the Edwards...

Protesting pro-testers

February 3, 2012

While speaking before 4,000 school officials at the Texas Association of School Administrators’ midwinter conference, Texas Education Commissioner Robert Scott said that standardized testing in Texas...

The dual-credit dilemma

February 2, 2012

In conversations about the future of higher education, dual credit elicits a wide range of opinions. Considered a cure-all by some and a cop-out by others, dual credit offers students the opportunity to...

A new blueprint for higher education

February 1, 2012

During his speech Friday at the University of Michigan, President Barack Obama scrutinized the rising cost of attending college. Echoing sentiments from his State of the Union speech last week, Obama put...

An investment worth making

January 31, 2012

Last Wednesday, teams from the biology, chemistry and statistics departments presented the first round of results of the University’s Course Transformation Project. The CTP is a collaborative effort...

Quotes to Note: State of the Union, in-state tuition, and Austin Energy

January 30, 2012

“If we are going to take any kind of money, certainly tax dollars, with an idea that we’re actually trying to accomplish some things with that, we’d better pay attention to: Are we actually...

Preserving the grounds of protest

January 27, 2012

At its meeting Monday, Faculty Council discussed a new University policy, issued Jan. 11, prohibiting camping on University property. Few in attendance doubted what triggered the policy change: the Occupy...

Impeding fair representation

January 26, 2012

After months of debate, the city of Austin’s 2012 Charter Revision Committee is poised to hold a final vote on a proposal that has the potential to create single-member districts for city council...

Fate of voter ID remains uncertain

January 25, 2012

The Texas attorney general announced Monday that the state of Texas filed suit in federal court for approval of its controversial voter ID law passed last spring. The Voting Rights Act of 1965 requires...

Tackling rising textbook costs

January 24, 2012

Faculty Council passed a resolution Monday that requires faculty members to submit the textbooks they plan to use for their classes to bookstores at least 30 days before the first day of class. The council...

Quotes to note: Memorable missteps from the campaign trail

January 20, 2012

“You don’t need to be in the pew every Sunday to know there’s something wrong in this country when gays can serve openly in the military but our kids can’t openly celebrate Christmas...

The boots have left the presidential stage

January 20, 2012

“The worst presidential candidate in American history,” according to liberal political commentator James Carville, is returning to Texas to continue his reign as the longest-serving governor...

A Shocking Proposal

January 19, 2012

In December, Austin Energy, the city-owned utility company, proposed increasing electricity rates by 12 percent. Austin City Council’s consideration of the proposal is ongoing, but the plan is drawing...

Quotes to note: From porn peddlers to district meddlers

January 18, 2012

From porn peddlers to district meddlers, the following quotes are among the best from the last few weeks. “There’s no doubt that [President Obama] has a significant interest in higher education....

Issues budding this spring

January 17, 2012

Editor’s note: We anticipate covering the following issues as they unfold this semester. Fisher v. University of Texas The U.S. Supreme Court will soon decide whether to hear Abigail Fisher’s...

Quotes to Note: A semester in review

December 7, 2011

 The following quotes are from viewpoints and overviews written by The Daily Texan Editorial Board this semester. We’ve selected quotes that paint a picture of the noteworthy events that occurred...

Quotes to Note: Texas Politics Speaker Series

December 5, 2011

The Texas Politics Speaker Series, which brings state leaders to the UT campus, featured interviews last week with Sen. Wendy Davis, D-Fort Worth, and Sen. Kel Seliger, R-Amarillo, on education in the...

Quotes to Note: Addressing tuition increases

December 2, 2011

From the debate surrounding the Tuition Policy Advisory Committee’s proposed tuition increases to Gov. Rick Perry’s latest presidential campaign ad, the following quotes are among the best...

The Pomp And Circumstance of TPAC

December 1, 2011

Wednesday’s open forum put an end to the motions of the Tuition Policy Advisory Committee, as it presented its proposal to the public. And that’s all the process consisted of — motions. TPAC...

Gerrymandered confusion

November 30, 2011

Texas Attorney General Greg Abbott fired another salvo on Monday in the ongoing duel between Texas legislators and federal judges over the set of newly drawn political district maps. The redistricting...

From the top

November 29, 2011

 President William Powers Jr. spent a good portion of Monday’s Faculty Council meeting explaining the University’s recent decision to move certain funding decisions from the Graduate School...

Quotes to note: Tuition increases and the A&M rivalry

November 28, 2011

Tuition increases on the horizon After deliberating for less than two months, the Tuition Policy Advisory Committee submitted its recommendation today to President William Powers Jr. The committee proposes...

The entrepreneurial vision

November 23, 2011

Given the current state of higher education, university administrators around the country are working to champion timeless buzzwords such as “creativity,” “innovation” and “entrepreneurship”...

Higher education’s ruffled feathers

November 22, 2011

“Ruffled feathers are good — they make us all better.” These were ending words of sorts, delivered by Rep. Lois Kolkhorst, R-Brenham, at Friday’s hearing held by the Joint Oversight...

A more decent proposal

November 22, 2011

A panel of federal judges released a new set of maps for state legislative districts Thursday. The process of re-drawing these maps, known as redistricting, happens every 10 years to account for population...

A subtle nod of approval

November 17, 2011

Members of the Tuition Policy Advisory Committee indicated Wednesday in their second open forum of the semester that they are considering recommending a 2.6-percent tuition increase for resident undergraduate...

‘In the interest of transparency’

November 16, 2011

Following the UT System’s announcement of a unique $10-million investment in MyEdu, members of the UT community have questioned the transparency surrounding the deal. The purpose of the investment...

The sound of Musick

November 15, 2011

The University released a second productivity report Friday, continuing its battle of numbers against critics of public higher education. Authored again by Marc Musick, sociology professor and associate...

Quotes to note: UT productivity report and MyEdu

November 14, 2011

Report reaffirms faculty productivity Marc Musick, associate dean for student affairs, released another report last week analyzing the productivity of UT faculty. The report comes amid controversy surrounding...

Rioting distorts sentiment

November 11, 2011

Late Wednesday night, the Penn State University Board of Trustees announced its rejection of legendary head coach Joe Paterno’s offer to resign at the end of the season and fired him and the university...

Setting the system standard

November 10, 2011

Earlier this week, UT-Arlington President Jim Spaniolo recommended to the university’s tuition review committee a tuition freeze for the 2012-13 school year. The freeze would be UT-Arlington’s...

Front porch in focus

November 8, 2011

Athletics is a university’s front porch. This timeless adage is the mantra spread by the NCAA, co-opted by university presidents, athletic directors and coaches alike. According to a report by...

Quotes to Note: Occupy Austin, Longhorn Network, and GOP

November 7, 2011

 From the controversy surrounding the Occupy movement to our favorite GOP presidential candidates, the following quotes are among the best from the last few days. “To raise the issue is not...

Burnt orange paint job

November 4, 2011

MyEdu is getting an expensive burnt orange paint job. For several months, rumors have surrounded the UT System’s incipient acquisition of a major stake in the private web-based company, but until...

Oversight not out of mind

November 3, 2011

State Sen. Kirk Watson, D-Austin, appeared on campus Wednesday as the first speaker for the Texas Politics Speaker Series. While dabbling in issues from the start of his political career to his plans for...

Quotes to Note: MyEdu partnership, voter ID laws, Rick Perry

November 2, 2011

“Would I have had different priorities for that money? Yes. We didn’t choose to bring this to the campus.” — President William Powers Jr. on the UT System Board of Regents’...

Battling perceptions, avoiding drought

November 1, 2011

Monday’s Faculty Council meeting featured concern regarding an article by the Austin American-Statesman titled “Do college ratings of professors make the grade?” published two weeks...

Quotes to Note: MyEdu deal and Longhorn Network lockout

October 31, 2011

UT invests in MyEdu The UT System Board of Regents recently invested $10 million from the Permanent University Fund in the Austin company MyEdu as part of an effort to improve four-year graduation rates...

Increased enrollment demands more support

October 28, 2011

The Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board released its annual fall enrollment report Wednesday, which detailed the changing number of students enrolling at institutions of higher education in Texas....

Set the guidelines, not the syllabus

October 28, 2011

The Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board passed recommendations Thursday that would alter the state’s mandatory core curriculum at all of its higher education institutions. Driven by cross-campus...

Using more than data

October 27, 2011

Last week, the Austin American-Statesman ran a story examining the teaching performance evaluation process at UT. The article comes after months of debate surrounding faculty productivity and higher education...

Quotes to Note: Plastic Bags and West VA joins Big 12

October 26, 2011

Public commentary on the proposed plastic bag ban The following quotes are from Monday’s open forum during which Austinites voiced their opinions on the proposed plastic bag ban. City officials...

Quotes to note: UTEP, sexual harassment, Bastrop fires

October 24, 2011

“They’re all talking about getting out. You’re getting ready to lose a lot of people you don’t want to lose.” — Mary Aldridge Dean, executive director of the Texas...

Quotes to note: Legislature’s Joint Oversight Committee on Higher Education

October 18, 2011

Editor’s Note: The following quotes are from the second hearing of the Legislature’s Joint Oversight Committee on Higher Education Governance, Excellence and Transparency held Monday at the...

Thanksgiving with the Powells

October 18, 2011

Monday’s higher education hearing featured a long-awaited public dialogue between Gene Powell, chairman of the UT System Board of Regents, and the Legislature, which has been less than exuberant...

Quotes to note: Perry, Fisher vs UT, David Ash

October 17, 2011

“We’re talking about basic primary things that everyone should be entitled to, and it really shouldn’t be attached to any political or religious agenda.” — Dr. Tamarah Duperval-Brownlee,...

Technology for education, not profit

October 14, 2011

Last weekend, about 400 invited participants from the higher education community attended the star-studded, Future of State Universities conference in Dallas. The conference was hosted by former Florida...

TPPF’s new higher education baggage

October 14, 2011

Last Tuesday, the much-maligned Texas Public Policy Foundation released a statement from their new Director for Higher Education Research, Thomas Lindsay. The Texas Public Policy Foundation is the Austin...

Quotes to note: Talking points from TPAC

October 13, 2011

The following quotes are from the Tuition Policy Advisory Committee’s open forum held Wednesday evening. TPAC, composed of four students, five faculty and administrators and three non-voting members,...

Quotes to note: Presidential hopefuls, occupy movement and medical school

October 10, 2011

“A pregnant woman who enters an abortion clinic is faced with a decision that will forever change two lives. That’s why she must have the very best information with which to make that decision.” —...

Oh you sweet, stupid OU

October 6, 2011

Editor's note: In the spirit of our friendly rivalry with the University of Oklahoma, the editorial boards of The Daily Texan and The Oklahoma Daily have exchanged editorials. In anticipation...

The need for basic research

October 4, 2011

The Natural Sciences Council sponsored a faculty panel Friday highlighting the importance of public funding for investigative research. The group noted that the National Science Foundation, the federal...

Quotes to Note: Public funding, SECession

October 3, 2011

Public funding for academic research “Short-term research makes money for a company. Long-term research, if done well, instead will create new companies. It will create new markets. It will create...

Sonogram law awaits appeal

September 30, 2011

On Thursday, the U.S. Supreme Court prohibited Texas from enforcing the new sonogram law that passed the Legislature last spring while the law is under the appeals process, according to The Texas Tribune....