Everyone has the right to higher education no matter their background, personal views or where they live, and the University of Texas at Austin believes in those ideals as well.
Announced July 9, the Board of Reagents in a press release on the the Universities website said, “The University of Texas System Board of Regents has made an investment in the future for students at UT Austin that will increase tuition assistance for those from middle- and low-income families and make the state’s flagship research university even more affordable.”
According to the press release, it stated that the regents voted unanimously Tuesday to establish a $160 million endowment from distribution of the state’s Permanent University Fund that will generate money for financial assistance beginning in fall 2020.
It’s believed the University of Texas will use some of its oil money to dramatically expand the financial aid it offers to low- and middle-income undergraduates on its flagship Austin campus.
“Recognizing both the need for improved access to higher education and the high value of a UT Austin degree, we are dedicating a distribution from the Permanent University Fund to establish an endowment that will directly benefit students and make their degrees more affordable,” Chairman Eltife said after the vote, “this will benefit students of our great state for years to come.”
The new endowment will be used to expand UT Austin’s Texas Advance Commitment; for which is stated on that website that tuition covered at the moment by the program is up to $30,000 and tuition support is up to $100,000
With the new implementations that were voted on in-state undergraduate students who qualify will see benefits in the 2020 Fall program. Benefits such as completely covered tuition and fees for students from families that earn up to $65,000 a year who have financial need, and, provide some assured tuition support to students from families with incomes of up to $125,000 who have financial need.
“I am grateful to the UT System Board of Regents and Chairman Kevin Eltife for prioritizing students and investing in the future of our great state,” said UT Austin President Gregory L. Fenves, “chairman Eltife understands that college affordability is one of the most critical issues affecting all Texans. Thanks to his leadership and the board’s action, this new endowment will go a long way toward making our university affordable for talented Texas students from every background and region.”
UT Austin has the highest academic rankings among public universities in Texas and is consistently recognized as one of the world’s leading research universities; but it has an annual average undergraduate in-state tuition and fees of $10,314, which is less than 12 other Texas public universities, according to data published by the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board.
Statistics clearly spurring the decision passed on Tuesday by the board of regents, clearly lines up with the over the mission of the university too; “The mission of The University of Texas at Austin is to achieve excellence in the interrelated areas of undergraduate education, graduate education, research, and public service. The university provides superior and comprehensive educational opportunities at the baccalaureate through doctoral and special professional educational levels.”
Their mission only strengths the support to their core values, which includes; Learning — A caring community, all of us students, helping one another grow.
Discovery — Expanding knowledge and human understanding.
Freedom — To seek the truth and express it.
Leadership — The will to excel with integrity and the spirit that nothing is impossible.
Individual Opportunity — Many options, diverse people and ideas, one university.
Responsibility — To serve as a catalyst for positive change in Texas and beyond.
“In awarding financial aid to middle- and low-income students, the university will continue to draw from multiple sources, including federal Pell grants, and the TEXAS Grants program, which received additional support from the Texas Legislature this year. The funds from the new endowment will then be used to supplement grants and scholarships. The Texas Advance Commitment does not rely on loans or require students to pay back any funds,” the university said in a statement.