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About Tier One

Tier One is a general term used for a university that has been nationally recognized for excellence in academics and research.

Such universities also are proven to be an economic powerhouse for their region.

Economists estimate that Tier One universities generate 334 new jobs and add $8.6 million in wages for every $10 million in research expenditures.

Investment in research and development yields a 20 to 30 percent rate of return to Texas in terms of jobs and economic stimulus, according to the Texas Legislative Study group.

Texas needs more Tier One universities

In 2009, the Texas Legislature recognized the state's need for more Tier One universities by passing House Bill 51.

This serves as a framework for the state to provide funding and incentives for emerging research universities. There is a need for more Tier Ones in Texas because the state should lead the nation in research, venture capital investment, and graduate education programs.

It is estimated that at least 10,000 academically talented students leave Texas each year to enroll in graduate programs at Tier One universities in other states.

Only 4,000 students outside of the state choose Texas for their higher education.

Texas experiences a net loss, or “brain drain,” of 6,000 talented students per year, many of whom do not return to Texas after graduation.

Estimates show that Texas loses $3.7 billion annually in federal research and development funding to states with more than three Tier One universities.

California, the only state in the nation with a higher population than Texas, has nine Tier One universities; New York, which has a population of 7.2 million fewer people than Texas, has seven.

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