An investment in knowledge always pays the best interest. — Benjamin Franklin
Knowledge — intellectual capital — remains the United States’ strongest currency. For every national and global challenge facing us, there is a liberal arts researcher working toward a solution, from stabilizing the economy to strengthening national security to increasing international diplomacy. during the fall, The University of Texas at Austin announced an eight-year capital campaign to raise $3 billion to extend the reach of its research and educational opportunities.
“We intend to become the best public university in the nation,” President William Powers Jr. said in announcing the Campaign for Texas. “This campaign will focus on the people who will help us do that. our faculty. our researchers. our students.”
The College of liberal Arts will play an important role in the university’s campaign, and we are ambitious. Our goal is to become one of the nation’s premier liberal arts colleges during the next decade. To do this, we are working with alumni and friends of the college to raise $225 million to expand academic opportunities and support faculty members and students.
As President Powers raises the university’s profile throughout the United States and abroad, he has identified liberal arts as a top priority. In 2006, he pledged $1.3 million in recurring funds to support the history department’s research and teaching programs. In 2007, he committed similar support for the English department.
Today, your college is a focal point of the university’s Campaign for Texas because a great College of liberal Arts
is essential to the mission of the university and a great asset to the state, the nation and the world.
The American Citizen & Modern Democracy
In this issue of life & letters, titled The American Citizen and Modern democracy, we introduce you to the researchers and thought-leaders who shape national and international policy issues.
In the American landscapes section of the magazine, H.W. Brands sheds new light on the FDR presidency, and Michael Winship and scholars throughout the college examine books that changed America.
In the American Politics section, go behind the headlines with Bruce Buchanan and Sean Theriault to learn more about the politics of the presidency and congress, and explore how religious communities become politically active with Eric Mcdaniel and Christopher Ellison.
In the global opportunities section of the magazine, you’ll meet Terri Givens, vice provost and political scientist, who is calling upon scholars and alumni to expand the university’s international portfolio and relationships, and Mahmoud Al-Batal and Kristen Brustad who are helping the world learn more about the history, culture and language of the Middle East.
Finally, the back page of the magazine highlights the internationally recognized work of the Teresa Lozano Long Institute of Latin American Studies, also known as LLILAS. As part of the Campaign for Texas, the College of Liberal Arts will be raising funds to match the generous $10 million gift from Joe and Teresa Lozano Long.
Becoming the Best
The American Citizen and Modern democracy is the third edition of a three-part series of life & letters issues designed to bring the college’s researchers to communities throughout the nation and the world.
Last year, the college introduced you to scholars whose work transcends hemispheric borders and ethnic boundaries in Gateway to the Americas and Changing U.S. Demographics (winter 2007-08). earlier this year, you met the researchers who explore our time here on earth in The Human Condition (winter 2008-09).
As you’ve learned, the College of liberal Arts is home to highly ranked departments and some of the most respected faculty across the country. with Pulitzer Prize-winning authors, guggenheim and MacArthur Fellows, members of the distinguished national Academy of Sciences and the American Academy of Arts and Sciences among our community of scholars, we are quickly becoming one of the best liberal arts colleges at a major research university. Nearly all of our departments rank in the Top 20 and a few in the Top 10. With your help, the college is moving closer to its goal of placing critical departments into the top tier nationally.
We look forward to working with you and more liberal arts alumni and friends as we embark on the ambitious and much-needed Campaign for Texas that will ensure your college remains a competitive resource, and recruiting ground, for the next generation of scholars, business leaders and policymakers.