Creating Leaders, Encouraging Innovation, Promoting Excellence
The Texas Coalition for Excellence in Higher Education is a group of concerned citizens who believe strongly in the power of higher education to transform lives, build our economy and shape Texas’ future. We believe a great university is an incubator of knowledge and creativity. It fuels discovery, and marries research with enhanced classroom teaching, learning, and hands-on experience. It also serves as an economic engine bringing in millions in research and development dollars, new businesses and industries, creating jobs and economic opportunity throughout Texas.
We believe we need to create high quality pathways to higher learning with partnerships linking the flagship universities with high schools, community colleges, technical schools and Tier One institutions, to ensure our educational system meets the diverse and growing needs of our population. In an increasingly global economy, future leaders must be challenged to think differently and consider the implications of diverse cultures, histories and traditions. Well-rounded and informed students are critical to keeping Texas and America competitive and attracting jobs and employers to our state.
Advocates for Texas' Future
The Texas Coalition for Excellence in Higher Education is a group of volunteer advocates who believe the pursuit of knowledge must be a state and national priority. At a time when America’s ability to compete and lead the world is at risk, the research conducted, innovations developed, and resulting improved teaching at Texas’ higher education institutions are more important than ever before. We hope to advance a thoughtful, constructive and transparent dialogue around these important issues for all Texans.
Our Call to Action
The Texas Coalition for Excellence in Higher Education was necessitated by the strong belief that there is a right way to improve higher education and that there is a wrong way that could have long-term damaging effects on our institutions of higher learning, our state's economy and on our future. Current recommendations being floated - from dramatically expanding enrollment while slashing tuition to separating research and teaching budgets, and seceding from a recognized and respected accreditation organization - are decidedly the wrong way. We believe our public university presidents and chancellors have earned our support with their ongoing commitment to a culture of excellence and continual innovation, while also working to cut operating costs and institute reforms. We also believe it is critical to regularly and openly evaluate the performance of our universities, and do so in a public and transparent way.
This website is intended to be a place for the latest news and information on the debate over high-quality higher education in Texas and for the exchange of open constructive dialogue about continued improvements.
UH to the Big 12?
Reports out this week suggest the University of Houston would drop its opposition to the UT System expansion in Houston in exchange for entrance into the Big 12 conference. The idea of welcoming UH into the Big 12 received immediate support from Governor Abbott, Lieutenant Governor Patrick and UT Austin President Fenves, as indicated by a round of supportive Tweets. According to the Austin American-Statesman, Houston lawmakers had differing views on whether or not a “swap” was in the works. “I have talked to boosters of the university who have floated that concept,” said Rep. Garnet Coleman. “In these circumstances, people use the tools that they have, and that’s one of the tools the University of Houston has. All’s fair in love and war.” State Sen. John Whitmire, however, had a differing view. “For anyone to think there’s a swap there, I say not only no, but hell no,” he said. “They are separate and apart.”Continue reading
"Undisputed Center for Innovation and Intellectual Capital"
Saying he is “fueling a new era of economic development” Gov. Greg Abbott this week announced the first round of recipients of the Governor's University Research Initiative. The funds are intended to attract renowned researchers to Texas universities, and this first batch certainly meets that description. The 10 researchers, who are members of The Royal Society in the United Kingdom, the National Institutes of Health, the National Academy of Engineering and the National Academy of Sciences, will come to three Texas schools: Texas A&M University, the University of Texas at Austin and the University of Houston. Texas A&M will receive half the researchers. In an op-ed following the announcement, Abbott wrote: “Because of the strategic investments we are making today, Texas will be the undisputed center for innovation and intellectual capital in this decade and beyond.”Continue reading