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University of Texas Rio Grande Valley

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The University of Texas
Rio Grande Valley
Seal of The University of Texas Rio Grande Valley.png
Motto Latin : Disciplina Praesidium Civitatis
Motto in English
Cultivated mind is the guardian genius of democracy. [1]
Type Public State University
EstablishedJune 14, 2013 (as UTRGV)
Endowment $46.13 million (December 31, 2015) [2]
President Guy Bailey
Provost Patricia Alvarez McHatton
Academic staff
1,239 (Fall 2015) [3]
Administrative staff
1,338 (as of June 19, 2015) [4]
Students28,584 (Fall 2015)
Undergraduates 24,937 (Fall 2015) [3]
Postgraduates 3,647 (Fall 2015) [3]
Location Brownsville , Edinburg , Harlingen , McAllen , Rio Grande City , South Padre Island , Texas , U.S.
26°18′16″N 98°10′27″W / 26.304551°N 98.174165°W / 26.304551; -98.174165 Coordinates : 26°18′16″N 98°10′27″W / 26.304551°N 98.174165°W / 26.304551; -98.174165
Colors Orange, Gray, Green, & Navy [5]
Nickname Vaqueros
Sporting affiliations
NCAA Division I – WAC
Website www.utrgv.edu
University of Texas Rio Grande Valley logo.svg

The University of Texas Rio Grande Valley (UTRGV) is a public research university in the University of Texas System . UTRGV has multiple campuses in the Rio Grande Valley region of Texas ; founded in 2013, it entered into full operation in 2015 after the consolidation of the University of Texas at Brownsville/Texas Southmost College , the University of Texas–Pan American and the UT Regional Academic Health Center – Harlingen. The university has a new medical school. [6]

UTRGV is one of the largest universities in the U.S. to have a majority Hispanic student population; 80% of its students are Hispanic, virtually all of them Mexican-Americans . [7]


  • 1 History
  • 2 Administration and campus locations
    • 2.1 Current expansions
  • 3 Academics
    • 3.1 Rankings
    • 3.2 Financial aid
    • 3.3 Colleges, schools, and deans
    • 3.4 Academic accreditation
    • 3.5 Proposed expansions
  • 4 Student life
  • 5 Athletics
    • 5.1 Mascot controversy
  • 6 Alumni (including UTPA and UTB/TSC)
  • 7 References
  • 8 External links

History[ edit ]

See also: University of Texas–Pan American § History
See also: University of Texas at Brownsville § History

On December 6, 2012, the University of Texas System Board of Regents approved a proposal to abolish The University of Texas–Pan American and The University of Texas at Brownsville/Texas Southmost College , and create The University of Texas Rio Grande Valley in their place. The new institution was planned to include a medical school and have access to the Texas Permanent University Fund (PUF). [8] Texas Governor Rick Perry signed SB 24 [9] into law, approving the creation of the new university in June 2013. In December 2013, the UT System Board of Regents voted to name the new institution The University of Texas Rio Grande Valley (UTRGV).

Dr. Guy Bailey was selected as the founding university president. [10] Dr. Bailey, in turn, selected Dr. Havidan Rodriguez as the founding Provost and Executive Vice President for Academic Affairs (EVPAA), and Dr. Janna Arney as Deputy President. [11] In late August 2017, Dr. Havidan Rodriguez resigned his position as Provost/EVPAA to become the 20th President of The University at Albany, SUNY . [12] After his resignation was approved, Dr. Bailey appointed Dr. Patricia Alvarez McHatton as the Interim Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs.

In November 2014, the UT System Board of Regents approved the “Vaqueros” as the athletic nickname for University of Texas Rio Grande Valley. They also approved the official colors of blue, green, and orange. [13]

The university officially opened on August 31, 2015, with UT System chancellor Bill McRaven , U.S. Representative Rubén Hinojosa and Texas State Senator Juan “Chuy” Hinojosa attending the flag-raising ceremony. [14] McRaven said, “One hundred years from now, Texas will look back and say that this day changed Texas forever.” [14]

To honor the largest donation in the history of higher education in the Rio Grande Valley, the College of Business and Entrepreneurship was named Robert C. Vackar College of Business and Entrepreneurship. Robert C. Vackar, CEO of Bert Ogden Auto Group donated $15 million in the form of an endowment to the college. [15]

Administration and campus locations[ edit ]

As of October 2017, this is the current UTRGV Administration: [16]

  • Dr. Guy Bailey – University President
  • Dr. Janna Arney – Deputy President
  • Dr. Patricia Alvarez McHatton – Interim Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs
  • Rick Anderson – Executive Vice President for Finance and Administration
  • Dr. Kristin Croyle – Vice President for Student Success
  • Veronica Gonzales – Vice President for Governmental and Community Relations
  • Dr. Maggie Hinojosa – Vice President for Strategic Enrollment
  • Dr. John H. Krouse – Vice President for Health Affairs
  • Dr. Juan M. Sanchez – Interim Senior Vice President for Research, Innovation, and Economic Development
  • Dr. Kelly Scrivner – Vice President for Institutional Advancement

The University’s property totals 550 acres. UTRGV owns 105 buildings, some of the properties include:

  • Brownsville, Texas
    • The Brownsville Campus
    • Casa Bella
    • Cueto House
    • Lucerna House
    • Resaca Plaza
    • The Woods
    • Stargate
  • Edinburg, Texas
    • The Edinburg Campus
    • Alumni Center
    • Community Engagement and Student Success Building
    • Visual Arts Building
    • Advanced Tooling Engineering Center
  • McAllen, Texas
    • McAllen Teaching Site
  • Harlingen, Texas
    • Academic and Clinical Research Building
    • Pump House
    • Clinical Education Building
  • Rio Grande City, Texas
    • UTRGV at Starr County
  • South Padre Island, Texas
    • Coastal Studies Lab

Current expansions[ edit ]

Some of the new buildings currently being built include: New Science Research Building (Edinburg), New Academic Building (Brownsville), and Medical Education Building (Edinburg). [17]

Academics[ edit ]

Rankings[ edit ]

University rankings
Forbes [18] 598
U.S. News & World Report [19] 231-300

UTRGV offers 64 bachelor’s, 49 master’s, and 4 doctoral programs (in addition to 2 cooperative doctoral programs). [20] For the Academic Year 2015–2016, 92.7% of enrolled students came from the Cameron , Hidalgo , Starr , and Willancy counties. The ethnic enrollment is 88.8% Hispanic (Fall 2015). [17]

In 2017, The Hispanic Outlook in Higher Education Magazine has ranked UTRGV 3rd in the country in awarding bachelor’s degrees to Hispanic students. [21]

The University of Texas Rio Grande Valley has been ranked 6th among the 50 most affordable online Master of Business Administration in Financial Planning degrees in the country. [22]

The University of Texas Rio Grande Valley – Master of Public Affairs (MPA) online degree program has been ranked No. 21 out of 50 universities in the United States for its quality and affordability. UTRGV’s MPA program is the top-ranked program in the University of Texas System , followed by UT Arlington in 22nd place. [23]

Financial aid[ edit ]

In 2017, The University of Texas Rio Grande Valley has been ranked No. 6 (out of 56 Texas Universities) for lowest student loan debt in the state of Texas. [24]

Colleges, schools, and deans[ edit ]

Eleven colleges and schools formed the academic foundation for UTRGV, including: [25]

UTRGV College/School founding
Year founded

School of Medicine
College of Medicine and Health Affairs*
College of Health Affairs
College of Sciences
College of Liberal Arts
College of Fine Arts
College of Engineering and Computer Science
Robert C. Vackar College of Business and Entrepreneurship [15]
College of Education and P-16 Integration
Honors College
Graduate College
University College

As of October 2017, these are the current list of Deans of all the UTRGV Colleges and Schools: [26]

  • John H. Krouse – Dean, UTRGV School of Medicine
  • Michael Lehker – Dean, College of Health Affairs
  • Mark Kroll – Dean, Robert C. Vacker College of Business and Entrepreneurship
  • Patricia Alvarez McHatton – Dean, College of Education & P-16 Integration
  • Alex Domijan – Dean, College of Engineering and Computer Science
  • Steve Block – Dean, College of Fine Arts
  • Walter Diaz – Dean, College of Liberal Arts
  • Parwinder Grewal – Dean, College of Sciences
  • Mark Andersen – Dean, Honors College
  • Dave Jackson – Dean, Graduate College

Academic accreditation[ edit ]

UTRGV inherited the academic accreditation of its legacy institutions. [27] The university is fully accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools. [28]

UTRGV was notified on December 6, 2016 that it was being placed on a 12-month probation by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC). The reason why UTRGV was placed on probation because of the complexity of a transition that involved the separation of UTB/TSC, the separate accreditation of TSC, and the formation of UTRGV. UTRGV will learn of the probation-removal decision by the SACSCOC Board of Trustees in December 2017. [29]

The UTRGV School of Medicine received preliminary accreditation from the Liaison Committee on Medical Education in October 2016. [30] In May 2016, the School of Medicine received accreditation from the Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education (ACGME) to offer a medical residency program in psychiatry. [31]

Proposed expansions[ edit ]

Legislation to establish a law school in UTRGV was introduced by representative Eddie Lucio III in November 2014. [32] [ needs update ]

Student life[ edit ]

Prior to the 2008 U.S. Presidential Election, on February 22, 2008, then-Senator Barack Obama visited the UTRGV Edinburg Campus (then known as the University of Texas-Pan American ) to talk to college students about better paying jobs and tuition assistance. [33]

Athletics[ edit ]

Main article: UTRGV Vaqueros

The merged university inherited UTPA’s Division I membership; most of the athletic facilities are located in Edinburg. They have membership with the Western Athletic Conference .

On November 19, 2016, the UTRGV Women’s Volleyball Team defeated the Utah Valley Woman’s Volleyball team, making them the Western Athletic Conference (WAC) Volleyball Champions of 2016. [34]

Mascot controversy[ edit ]

The choice of a new university nickname was met with some contention from members of the communities of the two merged schools. [35] UTPA supporters, the larger of the two merged schools, argued for keeping the UTPA nickname, Broncs, while UTB supporters wanted a nickname new to both merged schools. UTPA Alumnus Alex Del Barrio created a petition to “Say No To Vaqueros” that garnered over 11,000 signatures after the announcement was made. [36] Several local city councils also passed resolutions in support of one option or the other. [35] President Guy Bailey recommended a new nickname, Vaqueros , to The University of Texas System Board of Regents on November 5, 2014. [37] The suggestion for Vaquero was inspired by the UTPA student Studio Art projects, where the Toro and Vaquero were the most popular projects. [38]

Bailey also recommended school’s athletic colors be UT System orange, green (formerly the secondary color of UTPA), and blue (formerly the secondary color of UTB). [37]

The announcement to the decision generated a swift and mainly negative reaction from some UTPA supporters on social media. These supporters, displeased that the Bronc was being moved to the wayside, determined the name was culturally insensitive, racist, and sexist. [39] [40] Nevertheless, the UT System Board of Regents approved the recommendation the following day, [41] making Vaqueros the fifth NCAA Division I nickname that is a Spanish language word after the Cal State Northridge Matadors , UC Santa Barbara Gauchos , San Diego Toreros , and New Mexico Lobos . Bailey considered the decision “final” following the approval by the board of regents. [42] About 500 students protested against the Vaquero mascot on the UTPA campus on 13 November 2014. [43] A petition calling for Bailey’s immediate resignation garnered more than 700 signatures. [44] Articles of impeachment were filed against the Student Government President Alberto Adame and Vice-President Carla “Fernanda” Pena by Jonathan Lee Salinas (Senator at Large ’14–’15) partly for their roles in the mascot committee, though, the impeachment process was ended due to insufficient evidence. Following the protests, the UT System issued a press release supporting the “Vaquero” decision. [45]

At the height of the controversy in November 2014, Texas legislator Terry Canales suggested he was considering filing a bill requiring UTRGV to abandon the Vaquero nickname. [42] Canales submitted HB901 in January 2015. [46] If passed, the legislation would require UTRGV to hold a student election for the athletics nickname, with “Broncs” and “Ocelots” on the ballot.

The mascot design was revealed in February 2015. [47] The logo features an orange faced rider in green on a navy blue and green horse. The logo features an outline of Texas in the negative space between the legs of the horse. [48] [49]

Alumni (including UTPA and UTB/TSC)[ edit ]

  • Pablo Almaguer : Chair of the State Bar of Texas Board of Directors
  • Gloria Anzaldúa : Novelist, Educator, Cultural Theorist
  • Jose Luis Betancourt, Jr. : Retired Rear Admiral of the United States Navy
  • David Bowles : Author, poet, and translator
  • Mike Brisky : Former member of the PGA.
  • Minerva G. Carcaño : Bishop
  • Roberto Collado Anzaldúa , Filmmaker, Film Director
  • Oscar Casares , writer
  • Mire Chatman : Euro Basketball player
  • Kika de la Garza : Former U.S. Congressman
  • Dan Firova : Former MLB baseball player and current Mexican League Manager.
  • William Garrison : Retired Major General of the United States Army
  • Apple Green : Retired NBA player
  • Greg Guy : Former NCAA basketball scoring champion
  • Jim Hickey : MLB Pitching Coach
  • Juan “Chuy” Hinojosa : Texas State Senator
  • Perry Hill : MLB Assistant Coach
  • Rubén Hinojosa : U.S. Congressman
  • Lucious Jackson : Olympic Gold Medalist and NBA player
  • Rossy Evelin Lima : Poet
  • Eddie Lucio : Texas State Senator
  • Otto Moore : Retired NBA Player
  • Javier Palomarez : President & CEO, United States Hispanic Chamber of Commerce
  • Valente Rodriguez : Actor
  • Marshall Rogers : Former NCAA Basketball Scoring Champion
  • Rogelio Sáenz : Dean, College of Public Policy, University of Texas San Antonio
  • Fred Taylor : Retired NBA Player
  • Jim Tyrone : Retired MLB Player and Member of UTPA College World Series Team
  • Wayne Tyrone : Retired MLB Player and Member of UTPA College World Series Team
  • George Williams : Retired MLB Catcher
  • Jaime Zapata , U.S. Homeland Security special agent

References[ edit ]

  1. ^ “Seal of the University” . University of Texas System. Retrieved 1 December 2014. 
  2. ^ “Endowment Information” . Utimco.org. 2016-02-29. Retrieved 2016-03-13. 
  3. ^ a b c “The University of Texas at Rio Grande Valley Strategic Analysis and Institutional Reporting” . The University of Texas Rio Grande Valley. Retrieved April 11, 2016. 
  4. ^ “Faculty & Staff” . The University of Texas Rio Grande Valley. Retrieved 29 June 2015. 
  5. ^ “UTRGV” . Utrgv.edu. Retrieved 2017-01-22. 
  6. ^ LaCoste-Caputo, Jenny; Adler, Karen (December 12, 2013). “Board of Regents votes to name new UT in South Texas The University of Texas Rio Grande Valley” (Press release). Austin, Texas : The University of Texas System Office of Public Affairs. Retrieved December 12, 2013. 
  7. ^ “2016 Fast Facts” (PDF). Utsystem.edu. Archived from the original (PDF) on 2016-08-22. Retrieved 2016-09-10. 
  8. ^ Kreighbaum, Andrew (6 December 2012). “UT regents approve merging RGV universities, will create medical school” . The Monitor . McAllen, Texas . Retrieved 7 December 2012. 
  9. ^ “Texas Legislature Online – 83(R) History for SB 24” . Capitol.state.tx.us. Retrieved 2016-09-10. 
  10. ^ Vertuno, Jim (April 28, 2014). “Guy Bailey named sole finalist for president of The University of Texas Rio Grande Valley” . Lubbock Avalanche-Journal . Associated Press. Retrieved April 29, 2014. 
  11. ^ https://riograndeguardian.com/bailey-names-first-part-of-his-utrgv-leadership-team/
  12. ^ “UTRGV | Havidán Rodríguez Named President of University at Albany” . www.utrgv.edu. Retrieved 2017-10-18. 
  13. ^ LaCoste-Caputo, Jenny; Adler, Karen (November 6, 2014). “UT System Board of Regents approves “Vaqueros” as athletic nickname for new university” (Press release). El Paso, Texas: The University of Texas System Office of Public Affairs. Retrieved 15 November 2014. 
  14. ^ a b Reyes, Dayna (1 September 2015). “McRaven: UTRGV will change the fabric of the Rio Grande Valley” . Rio Grande Guardian. Retrieved 2 September 2015. 
  15. ^ a b “UTRGV | UTRGV receives largest donation in RGV higher education history, names business college in honor of Robert C. Vackar” . Utrgv.edu. Retrieved 2016-06-01. 
  16. ^ “UTRGV | Leadership” . www.utrgv.edu. Retrieved 2017-10-18. 
  17. ^ a b “UTRGV | ata and Reports” . Utrgv.edu. Retrieved 2016-06-01. 
  18. ^ “America’s Top Colleges” . Forbes. July 5, 2016. 
  19. ^ “Best Colleges 2017: National Universities Rankings” . U.S. News & World Report. September 12, 2016. 
  20. ^ “UTRGV | Why Choose UTRGV?” . www.utrgv.edu. Retrieved 2016-06-01. 
  21. ^ “UTRGV | UTRGV ranks third in the nation in awarding bachelor’s degrees to Hispanic students; top 10 in other rankings” . www.utrgv.edu. Retrieved 2017-10-18. 
  22. ^ “UTRGV | UTRGV ranked sixth in the nation for its online MBA in financial planning” . www.utrgv.edu. Retrieved 2017-10-18. 
  23. ^ “UTRGV | UTRGV Online MPA program ranked high nationally for quality, affordability” . www.utrgv.edu. Retrieved 2017-10-18. 
  24. ^ “UTRGV | UTRGV ranks sixth among 56 Texas universities for lowest student loan debt” . www.utrgv.edu. Retrieved 2017-10-18. 
  25. ^ “Creating America’s Next Great Major University” . Utrgv.edu. Retrieved November 15, 2014. 
  26. ^ “UTRGV | Organizational Charts” . www.utrgv.edu. Retrieved 2017-10-18. 
  27. ^ “Recent Actions taken by SACSCOC Board of Trustees” (PDF). Retrieved 2015-09-02. 
  28. ^ “Commission on Colleges” . Sacscoc.org. Retrieved 2015-09-02. 
  29. ^ “UTRGV | Accreditation FAQs” . www.utrgv.edu. Retrieved 2017-10-18. 
  30. ^ “UTRGV | LCME grants preliminary accreditation: UTRGV School of Medicine now accepting applications” . Utrgv.edu. Retrieved 2016-06-01. 
  31. ^ “UTRGV | UTRGV SOM receives accreditation for medical residency program in psychiatry” . Utrgv.edu. Retrieved 2016-06-01. 
  32. ^ De Leon, Jose (November 10, 2014). “UT-RGV law school, drug tests, texting bans on 1st day of bill filing” . The Monitor. McAllen, Texas. Associated Press . Retrieved November 13, 2014. 
  33. ^ “Enthusiastic youthful crowd attends Obama rally at UTPA” . Valley Morning Star. Retrieved 2017-10-19. 
  34. ^ “2016 WAC Volleyball” . www.wacsports.com. Retrieved 2017-10-18. 
  35. ^ a b Solomon, Dan (September 18, 2014). “The Debate Over What The Mascot For The New UT-RGV Campus Is Getting Heated, Y’all” . Texas Monthly. Austin, Texas. Retrieved October 3, 2014. 
  36. ^ Chapa, Sergio (2014-11-07). “Opponents of UTRGV Vaqueros mascot say fight isn TMt over | News, Weather, Sports, Breaking News | KGBT” . Valleycentral.com. Retrieved 2016-03-13. 
  37. ^ a b Brito, Victoria (November 5, 2014). “UT-RGV mascot recommended to be the Vaquero” . The Monitor. McAllen, Texas. Retrieved November 5, 2014. 
  38. ^ Perez-Hernandez, Danya (November 7, 2014). “For Vaquero sculptor, UT-RGV controversy not a factor in designing new mascot” . The Monitor. McAllen, Texas. Retrieved November 9, 2014. 
  39. ^ Nelsen, Aaron (November 6, 2014). “Critics: Vaquero mascot is ‘culturally insensitive” . San Antonio Express-News . San Antonio, Texas . Retrieved November 6, 2014. 
  40. ^ Gonzalez, Susan (November 6, 2014). “New university mascot, colors fiercely debated” . The Pan American. Edinburg, Texas : UTPA – Student Publications. Retrieved November 6, 2014. 
  41. ^ “UT System tweet” . Twitter. November 6, 2014. Retrieved November 6, 2014. 
  42. ^ a b Chapa, Sergio (November 7, 2014). “UTRGV President Guy Bailey fires back amid “Vaqueros” controversy” . KGBT-TV. Harlingen, Texas. Retrieved November 8, 2014. 
  43. ^ Perez-Hernandez, Danya (November 10, 2014). “Fight against vaquero not over for UTPA students” . The Monitor. McAllen, Texas. Retrieved November 13, 2014. 
  44. ^ Espinosa, Elizabeth (2014-11-12). “Petition demands UTRGV President Bailey TMs resignation amid Vaqueros controversy | News, Weather, Sports, Breaking News | KGBT” . Valleycentral.com. Retrieved 2016-03-13. 
  45. ^ LaCoste-Caputo, Jenny; Adler, Karen (November 14, 2014). “Statement from Chairman Paul Foster, Chancellor Francisco Cigarroa and Executive Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs Pedro Reyes” (Press release). The University of Texas System Office of Public Affairs. Retrieved November 20, 2014. 
  46. ^ Perez-Hernandez, Danya (January 23, 2015). “Bill seeks election for UT-RGV nickname” . The Monitor. McAllen, Texas. Retrieved January 26, 2015. 
  47. ^ Luca, Greg (February 6, 2015). “UT-RGV releases official Vaqueros logo design” . The Monitor. McAllen, Texas. Retrieved February 6, 2015. 
  48. ^ “University of Texas System selects UTRGV athletic logo” . KGBT-TV . Harlingen, Texas . February 12, 2015. Retrieved 21 February 2015. 
  49. ^ “I see you” . Twitter. February 6, 2015. Retrieved February 6, 2015. 

External links[ edit ]

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