UT Austin

Katya Guzman takes part in a ceremonial dance last week in front of UT's J.J. Pickle Research Campus. The Miakan-Garza Band in San Marcos believe centuries old remains held by the archeological research lab are their ancestors.
Michael Minasi / KUT

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Drumming and the rhythmic clinking of wooden seed pods drowned out the sound of cars rushing past the J.J. Pickle Research Campus on a Monday evening.

A view of UT Austin's West Campus.
Julia Reihs / KUT

Three clusters of COVID-19, with a total of more than 100 cases, have been identified in West Campus, UT Austin said Wednesday night.

The individuals are currently isolated and receiving medical attention, the university said. Public health officials at UT and with Austin Public Health are conducting contact tracing to determine who was in close contact with them.

Students sit outside the Peter T. Flawn Academic Center at the University of Texas at Austin.
Allie Goulding for The Texas Tribune

As Texas college towns see rising COVID-19 cases with the return of hundreds of thousands of students to campus, a small but increasing number of universities are disciplining students who attend or host house parties or Greek rush events.

Heman Sweatt was admitted to UT Austin's law school in 1950 after winning a court case challenging the "separate but equal" concept.
Neal Douglass photograph courtesy Austin History Center

Numbers from UT Austin show that only 5.1% of its students are Black. While the university says the number of Black undergraduates on campus has risen over the past few years, the percentage is still small.

A much more vibrant Drag.
Gabriel C. Pérez / KUT

Daphne Glasgow gets nostalgic when she thinks of The Drag, the strip of shops and restaurants nestled along the UT Austin campus on Guadalupe Street. On Saturday mornings, she and her middle-school friends would walk up and down the street taking pictures of students and strangers passing by.

A masked UT employee indicates where a driver should go.
Michael Minasi / KUT

Four students sat at the corners of a picnic table on the UT Austin campus Wednesday, looking down at their open laptops, masks on their faces and backpacks open at their feet.

Many new rules are in place on campus as UT Austin tries to operate safely during the coronavirus pandemic. The school's "Protect Texas Together" plan outlines campus health and safety efforts such as social distancing.
Michael Minasi / KUT

Protect Texas Together” is UT Austin’s comprehensive plan to operate safely while the coronavirus pandemic continues. But after seeing other universities open for the fall and then shut down because of coronavirus cases, some students say they don't feel very protected.

Sam Houston State University

The July memo was blunt. Students at Sam Houston State University had been promised “direct contact” with faculty, and even in the grip of the coronavirus pandemic, the Huntsville school needed to deliver, Provost Richard Eglsaer told the faculty.

Darrell K Royal-Texas Memorial Stadium at UT Austin.
Gabriel C. Pérez / KUT

With the first day of school fast approaching, athletics officials at major Texas universities are moving forward with a fall football season, planning to bring thousands of fans back to stadiums. University officials are finalizing stadium capacity and attendance details that they say will keep both athletes and fans safe.

UT Austin is considering allowing 25% capacity at football games this fall.
Gabriel C. Pérez / KUT

The Big 12 is planning to move forward with football, volleyball and soccer seasons in the fall.

The conference will continue with its football plan: playing nine conference games and just one nonconference game. Meanwhile, volleyball and soccer seasons will be limited to Big 12 opponents only.

Allie Goulding / The Texas Tribune

Local officials and business leaders in some of Texas' college towns are bracing themselves for the possible cancellation of football — a move that could further injure local economies that are still limping from pandemic-related closures and are reliant on game day tourism.

UT Austin is offering in-person and hybrid classes this fall and welcoming students back to dorms.
Gabriel C. Pérez / KUT

Lee esta historia en español. 

UT Austin is asking students to self-quarantine for 14 days before they arrive on campus this fall.

The request is the latest effort in the university’s attempts to prevent COVID-19 infections in the UT community. Since March, 456 people on campus – including students, faculty and staff – have tested positive for the coronavirus. UT topped a New York Times survey published Wednesday of American universities with the most reported cases of COVID-19.

UT Austin plans to allow 50% seating capacity at football games at Darrell K Royal-Texas Memorial Stadium this fall during the coronavirus pandemic.
Gabriel C. Pérez / KUT

Texas Longhorns football plans to return to the Forty Acres this fall.

UT Austin has announced it will move forward with a 50% seating capacity for football games at Darrell K Royal-Texas Memorial Stadium.

Earlier this month, the University of Texas at Austin laid out a comprehensive set of benchmarks answering the question of what it would take to close down campus again.
Allie Goulding / The Texas Tribune

Texas universities planning for students returning to class this fall in the midst of a global pandemic are already preparing for the possibility that they could have to abruptly shut down campus again if conditions worsen.

A sign encouraging healthy habits to prevent the spread of disease is posted at UT's student union.
Julia Reihs / KUT

UT Austin students will have the choice of attending classes in person, taking them online or doing a combination when campus reopens in August, the university announced Monday. Residence halls, dining halls, student centers, the union and recreation centers will be open.  

"The Eyes of Texas" is dispayed at the University of Texas football stadium in 2018.
Jimmy Maas / KUT

"The Eyes of Texas" may be closing for good.

The school song of the University of Texas is under scrutiny – and it didn't just begin last week with social media posts by football players or a petition signed by thousands in the community. There have been decades of discomfort over the song, so a discussion about it is long overdue.

UT Austin's fall semester begins Aug. 26. People will be required to wear face coverings in campus buildings.
Gabriel C. Pérez / KUT

UT Austin will require students, faculty, staff and visitors to wear face coverings in campus buildings this fall, interim President Jay Hartzell announced Monday.

Gabriel C. Pérez / KUT

From Texas Standard:

While the effects of the pandemic have yet to be fully quantified, it's clear that communities of color have been among the hardest hit. At the same time, educational institutions are having to rethink the way they facilitate learning for their students. 

Tim Coppens

Daniel Wrapp is in debt to a llama.

He's never met her, but the UT Austin grad student has his fingers crossed that one day he'll be able to personally thank the 4-year-old llama named Winter, an unlikely linchpin in the fight against COVID-19.

UT Austin President Greg Fenves speaks during a town hall meeting about sexual misconduct among UT faculty and staff in January.
Julia Reihs / KUT

University of Texas at Austin President Greg Fenves is leaving the state’s flagship college for Emory University, where he will become president Aug. 1, he told the UT community in an email Tuesday. 

UT freshman Andrew Dareing moves his belongings out of the Jester-West dorm after campus shut down to help prevent the spread of the coronavirus.
Gabriel C. Pérez / KUT

Andrew Dareing is from Mertzon, Texas – a town with 743 people, where the only stoplight is a four-way blinking yellow light.

UT Austin President Greg Fenves
Martin do Nascimento / KUT

UT Austin President Greg Fenves' wife, Carmel, has tested positive for COVID-19, he said in a letter sent to the UT community Friday.

Gabriel C. Pérez / KUT

Three presumptive positive cases of the coronavirus disease COVID-19 were confirmed in Austin on Friday, city health officials said. The cases are the first confirmed in Central Texas.

Martin Do Nascimento / KUT

UT Austin is extending its spring break by one week in response to the coronavirus, UT President Greg Fenves announced Wednesday. Classes were originally scheduled to resume March 23, but will now resume March 30.

A student uses hand sanitizer on UT Austin campus
Julia Reihs / KUT

UT Austin said Monday it's preparing to move all classes online if COVID-19 cases are confirmed in the Austin area. The university is also advising students on how to avoid spreading the disease and how to travel safely over spring break. 

Tower Girl is perched next to her nest, which holds three eggs.
UT Falcon Cam screengrab

Tower Girl, the peregrine falcon who’s made the UT tower home for a few years, has laid three eggs in her nest as of Sunday.

A Healthy Horns sign on preventing the spread of germs
Julia Reihs / KUT

There are no confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Austin, but if it happens, the University of Texas wants to be ready.

UT Austin students attend a town hall meeting on faculty sexual misconduct, in January.
Julia Reihs / KUT

UT Austin is updating its sexual misconduct policies after months of campus protests.

Former UT Coach Michael Center Sentenced To 6 Months In Connection With Admissions Scandal

Feb 24, 2020
Michael Center exits the U.S. Federal Courthouse in Austin on March 12, 2019.
Miguel Gutierrez Jr. / The Texas Tribune

Former University of Texas at Austin tennis coach Michael Center was sentenced Monday to six months in prison in a Boston federal court for his involvement in the nationwide admissions scandal that implicated more than 50 people, including celebrities Felicity Huffman and Lori Loughlin.

Vivian Abagiu / University of Texas at Austin

A 3D atomic map could lead the way toward a vaccine for the 2019 novel coronavirus, researchers at UT Austin and the National Institutes of Health said Wednesday.