UT Board Of Regents Votes to Merge UTB & UTPA


POSTED: Friday, December 7, 2012 - 5:24pm

UPDATED: Friday, December 7, 2012 - 6:09pm

Lots of cheers and smiles Friday as the UT Chancellor Francisco Cigarroa was in Brownsville and Edinburg with the president's of UTPA and UTB to share the big news approved by the UT Board of Regents Thursday in Austin.

"We envision this as a university that spans the entire Valley."

The UT Board of Regents unanimously approved an initiative to authorize the chancellor to work with the Texas legislature to establish a new university here in the Valley.

"Texas for the Americas, this would be a university that would encompass the Brownsville campus, Pan-American campus, and future school of medicine."

The proposed new university would have an enrollment around 28,000 students.
The total operating budget in south Texas would be around $419 million.
The board also approved the allocation of $100 million over the next 10 years to accelerate the pace of transitioning the Regional Academic Health Center in Harlingen to a school of medicine.
UTB President Juliet Garcia couldn't be more happy with the approval made by the Board of Regents.

"Right now it's hard when a student says I want that program, I am sorry we don't that here you have to go elsewhere, all of a sudden we can say we do offer that we do have that here, it won’t be you have to go to Pan America or Brownsville, all of us will be offering the same degrees and will have access to the medical school as well."

UTPA President Robert Nelsen says this new university would create job growth to Valley.

"Bring close to 6,000-7,000 jobs and those jobs are going to pay $65,000 within 10 years, that's amazing."

In order for this plan to go through it needs to approved by a two-thirds majority in the Texas Legislature before the UT system could launch the new university.

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