university of texas

Photo by Elizabeth Beristain http://www.elizabethberistain.com Used with permission.

Mexican composer Daniel Catán died unexpectedly at his apartment in Austin on Sunday, according to a statement from his publisher. Catán was 62. The cause of death is under investigation.

Photo by KUT News

University of Texas police--and the rest of the campus, for that matter--are breathing a little easier this evening.

UTPD issued a safety alert about 6:25 p.m., saying that a man had been seen between 5:30 & 6:00 near the Rec Sports Building on San Jacinto Blvd., carrying what were believed to be two shotguns.

Police caught up with the man a few moments later. The weapons he was carrying were replicas. Authorities have canceled the safety alert.

Photo by KUT News

The Chronicle of Higher Education has released a report on the compensation that higher education leaders, and the University of Texas ranks very high.

University of Texas students concerned about cuts to financial aid programs and skyrocketing tuition costs took to the streets this afternoon.

Dozens of people wearing “Invest in Texas” t-shirts and carrying handmade signs marched from the Student Activity Center to the Capitol, shouting slogans in support of higher education. 

Image by Liang Shi for KUT News

Hard times may be coming to The University of Texas at Austin, based on projected spending cuts from the Legislature.

UT President Bill Powers told the campus that budget items in both the House and Senate versions of the 2012-2013 biennial budget cut funding to the school by $100 million.  Since 2009, UT has cut $14.5 million from its budget in response to state mandates, with the cuts primarily made to administrative operations.  Powers is scheduled to testify before the Senate Finance Ccommittee about higher education spending March 2.

University of Texas campus
Image by Jeff Heimsath for KUT News

We're beginning to see the consequences of state budget cuts at Texas' public universities. The Chronicle of Higher Education's Katherine Mangan reports today how more than 130 tenured professors at the University of Texas and Texas A&M University have accepted buyouts.

While the early retirements are expected to save nearly $18 million annually, they also carry administrative consequences for their colleges, Mangan reports.

Purple Stuff
Image courtesy Funktional Beverages

The makers of a legal drink that references a recreational drug say they are expanding distribution to more than 1,200 retail stores including twenty Signature Austin Convenience Stores in and around the city.

Lex Frieden
Image courtesy the University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston

The University of Texas system is filled with experts researching a wide range of topics, but coordinating them to help the tens of thousands of Texans living with physical disabilities is no easy task. Just ask UT Health professor Lex Frieden. He was handed that responsibility at the beginning of the month. But says he is up for the job. Lex has lived in a wheelchair most of his life, and was one of the architects of the Americans with Disabilities Act.

Stevie Ray Vaughn in the storm
Image courtesy Stuck in Customs http://www.flickr.com/photos/stuckincustoms/

The Austin-Round Rock-San Marcos area added 17,700 jobs over the last 12 months, according to statistics released this morning by the Texas Workforce Commission. But because the size of the labor force also grew, the unemployment rate actually edged upwards to 7.1 percent in November 2010 compared to 7 percent in November 2009.

ZipCar
Image courtesy citta-vita http://www.flickr.com/photos/koshalek/

Students, faculty, and staff at the University of Texas at Austin will be able to rent one of eight ZipCar vehicles positioned throughout campus starting in mid-January. ZipCar is a private company that rents full sized cars on an hourly basis.

ZipCar will be competing with Car2Go, which rents tiny smart cars. Car2Go was only available to city workers for a year under a pilot program. It now offers car rentals to everyone in the city.

UT Students at the "die-in" honoring the Bhopal tragedy.
Photo by Nick Robertson for KUT News

UT students gathered at the West Mall today to commemorate the 26th anniversary of the Bhopal gas tragedy that claimed the lives of 8,000 and affected over 100,000 others.

KUT News intern Nick Robertson was returning from a protest marking the anniversary of the Bhopal gas tragedy when he noticed a group University of Texas undergrads doing this over and over and over on Guadalupe Street. 

Protest at University of Texas
Image by Nick Robertson for KUT News

A group of students, faculty, and staff walked out of their buildings and held a loud marching demonstration this morning on the University of Texas campus.  They were protesting existing and future budget cuts brought on largely as a result of the state's budget gap, a shortfall that could exceed $20 billion.

Wall of Gatorade
Image courtesy Jeremy Brooks http://www.flickr.com/photos/jeremybrooks/

If you loaded up on Thanksgiving food over the long weekend, you might be thinking about how to work off those extra ounces before the next round of holiday binging begins in December.

University of Texas scientist Dr. Lisa Ferguson-Stegall just conducted a study as part of her dissertation work, and it revealed that guzzling sugar-rich sports drinks while working out might not be helping your waistline.

web forum
Photo by Nathan Bernier for KUT News

Fans of the University of Texas football team got a punch in the gut on Thanksgiving Thursday when their hopes to compete in a bowl game were erased by a 24-17 loss to Texas A&M. Now some fans are getting riled up online over the Longhorns' first losing season since 1997.

Hex Rally
Photo courtesy RODAN1 http://www.flickr.com/photos/68686644@N00/

University of Texas football loyalists will gather in burnt orange tonight for a mega-pep rally aimed at cursing their fierce rivals, Texas A&M University. The "Hex Rally", as it is known, is a 25 year tradition held before the customary Thanksgiving Day game between UT and A&M.

The Texas Exes explains what to expect:

Photo by Nathan Bernier for KUT News

Office-dwellers at UT today let out a collective groan as plans to cut back on custodial services were announced. Laurie Lentz, the communications coordinator for UT Facility Services, explained that the changes will predominantly affect offices.

“Where you’re really going to see the change is in the individual offices. For those offices we are going to gradually phase in a monthly cleaning as opposed to a weekly cleaning schedule” said Lentz.

Four Loko
Photo by Nathan Bernier for KUT News

The Food and Drug Administration issued a warning yesterday to the makers of potent caffeinated alcoholic drinks like Four Loko. The New York Times says the FDA warned them to remove the caffeine in 15 days or stop selling the products.

These popular bevearges are marketed heavily at college students. KUT News took a stroll outside our studios and talked to some undergrads about their impressions regarding the ban. Check out the video below.

Ask someone with a University of Texas email account to speak honestly about the service, and they might struggle to contain their frustration. While major web-based email services like Gmail, Yahoo! Mail, and Hotmail have quickly advanced their features and storage capacity, the University of Texas and its Microsoft Exchange service has fallen behind.

Undergrads, for example, get only 150 MB of storage, which means they often have to delete old emails to send new ones. The features offered by UT's web-based email are also limited.

DREAM Act rally at University of Texas at Austin
Photo by Nathan Bernier for KUT News

Undocumented immigrant students attending the University of Texas at Austin took the risky step of coming out before news cameras today to announce their status and call for swift passage of the Development, Relief and Education for Alien Minors Act (DREAM Act).

The DREAM Act would provide a six-year conditional path to citizenship for young people who qualify. They would need to complete a college degree or perform two years of military service.

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