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UTSA History

First Look

First Look

First Look

President Flawn addresses faculty and staff about university progress upon the close of the first year of operation



  • Flawn’s message ran in The Discourse, a UTSA newsletter, in June 1974.
  • He highlighted the advancement of construction on the permanent site, later to become Main Campus.
  • Flawn also congratulated faculty and staff for their ability to work together and makes successes.

By Peter Flawn |
Originally Posted 5/1/2019 |
FROM THE Spring/Summer 2019 ISSUE

At the end of our first year as an operating university, I am pleased to report that the various parts that make up an academic machine have all come into place and are working well. The parts that had rough edges have been worn smooth through abrasion with other components of the machine and with lubrication by goodwill and a sense of purpose. The following recitation of activities and accomplishments should be prefaced with the observation that the greatest accomplishment of the past year was a strengthening of the essential sense of community that separates a good university from an academic factory. We have all become acquainted and we have developed an appreciation of the qualities of our colleagues.

“The parts that had rough edges have been worn smooth through abrasion with other components of the machine and with lubrication by goodwill and a sense of purpose.”

The Handbook of Operating Procedures for UTSA was developed by the President’s Office with the assistance of an ad hoc faculty committee on governance. It has been approved by the chancellor and distributed internally. The general faculty is in the process of organization and has elected a secretary, Dr. Curtis W. Hayes. The essential university committees have been appointed and are functioning. An affirmative action plan was developed and is awaiting approval from [the Department of Health, Education, and Welfare’s] Dallas office.

The warehouse and Library Annex Building on the permanent campus were completed and are in operation. The large part of UTSA’s general library collection has been delivered and is being processed in the new facility. Site development plans for the campus are in final preparation stages and the first part of the work, which includes internal streets, walkways, drainage facilities, lighting, and parking lots, will be put out for bids in a few months. Purchase of an in-house academic computer for teaching and research has been approved. Furniture and equipment acquisition continued throughout the year.

During the year we have worked to establish continuing interactions with other higher education and research institutions in and around San Antonio. We have entered into a formal affiliation agreement between UTSA, The UT Health Science Center, Southwest Research Institute, and Southwest Foundation for Research and Education that will result in a working research consortium. Our faculty has established contacts with their counterparts in San Antonio and St. Philips Colleges and in other community colleges to assist in working out course equivalencies to facilitate transfers. A program articulation has been developed in [the studies of] office management and criminal justice. We entered into two cooperative efforts with the National University of Mexico’s San Antonio campus and are looking forward to more such joint ventures in the coming year.

I have reserved my remarks on the academic area until last because there is so much to report. The Southern Association of Colleges and Schools, as a consequence of a very fine report of their visiting team, designated us as a candidate of accreditation. The final step in the accreditation process will take place next fall after graduation of our first class. The Texas Education Agency, following a visit by Assistant Commissioner Ford, gave administrative approval for our graduate certification programs in education. Joint planning with The UT Health Science Center in the area of allied health programs continued throughout the year.

The Graduate Catalog was revised for 1974–75. Work continued on the Undergraduate Catalog. Requests for new programs in psychology (B.A.), criminal justice (B.A.), educational psychology/special education (M.A.), and educational psychology/counseling and guidance (M.A.) were prepared and sent forward. Admissions policies were drafted and given administrative approval pending final Board of Regents action. Our continuing education programs have been very successful; eight programs were initiated over the past year and all were oversubscribed. Twenty new faculty members and 255 new staff members have joined UTSA since June 1973. Of these, 90 are staff members at the Institute of Texan Cultures. The institute is now administratively a part of UTSA. It has been a pleasure to work with its distinguished director, R. Henderson Shuffler.

In conclusion, it has been a good year for UTSA, a year of deliberate, planned growth, and development toward our objective—to become a first-class university. My thanks to all who have had a part in it.