Skip to Search Skip to Navigation Skip to Content

1. About UTSA


The University of Texas at San Antonio is dedicated to the advancement of knowledge through research and discovery, teaching and learning, community engagement and public service. As an institution of access and excellence, UTSA embraces multicultural traditions and serves as a center for intellectual and creative resources as well as a catalyst for socioeconomic development and the commercialization of intellectual property – for Texas, the nation and the world.


UTSA was created by a mandate from the 61st Texas Legislature on June 5, 1969, to be a university of the first class offering bachelor’s, master’s, and doctoral degrees “as are customarily offered at leading American universities.” The first class of 671 graduate students was admitted in June 1973. Upper-division undergraduates were admitted in September 1975; lower-division undergraduates were admitted in June 1976. The first commencement ceremony was in August 1974. The UTSA Alumni Association was formed in 1978, and UTSA now has over 91,000 alumni including students from South Texas and around the world.

UTSA received full accreditation by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools in February 1974. UTSA’s first endowed professorship was established in 1981 in the life sciences. The first endowed chair was established in 1985 in the College of Business. The UTSA Honors Program was initiated in September 1985 and became the UTSA Honors College in Fall 2002.

As of August 2013, UTSA has more than 140 degree programs in nine colleges. UTSA will introduce several new programs at the bachelor's, master's and doctoral levels over the next few years.

Ninety-eight percent of tenured and tenure-track faculty hold a doctorate or terminal degree in their fields. Over the years the faculty members at UTSA have won over seventy Fulbright Fellowships to teach and conduct research in foreign countries. As of Fiscal Year 2012, UTSA ranks eighth in research expenditures among Texas public universities.

In Fall 2013, enrollment was nearly 29,000 which is in keeping with the enrollment management plan. Based on the number of bachelor’s degrees awarded to Hispanic students, UTSA is in the top ten of all Hispanic-serving public universities in the continental United States.

In 1986, the Institute of Texan Cultures became a part of The University of Texas at San Antonio. In 2009, the Institute of Texan Cultures site was designated the UTSA HemisFair Park Campus. The UTSA Downtown Campus opened at the Cypress Tower Building in 1994, moving to its permanent site in 1997. Space on all three campuses now totals over 5 million square feet.

The most current information on UTSA is also available on the Fast Facts page at


UTSA is an institution of The University of Texas System. Governance of the University is vested in the nine-member Board of Regents of The University of Texas System, whose members are appointed biennially for six-year, staggered terms by the Governor, with the advice and consent of the Senate. The Board of Regents delegates administrative authority to the Chancellor of The University of Texas System. In turn, the administrative authority of each institution, such as UTSA, is delegated to the President of that institution.

The President of UTSA is assisted by a staff including the Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs, the Vice President for Business Affairs, the Vice President for Community Services, the Vice President for Research, the Vice President for Student Affairs, and the Vice President for External Relations. The President’s Office also includes the Office of Legal Affairs, the Office of Equal Opportunity Services, and the Office of Audit, Compliance and Risk Services.

The Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs is the university’s chief academic officer. The provost is charged with ensuring the quality of academic programs and with supporting the hiring of top faculty. A high priority of this office is to guide UTSA toward its goal of being a Tier One research institution. UTSA’s provost reports directly to the president and oversees the eight academic colleges, the Graduate School, Honors College, the Libraries, Information Technology and many other initiatives.

The Vice President for Business Affairs provides the President with advice and counsel on fiscal affairs and has direct responsibility for the business operations of the University, including budgeting and financial forecasting, human resources, facilities and capital improvement projects, campus police operations and emergency preparedness, environmental health and safety, purchasing and auxiliary services, including food service, bookstore operations and parking and transportation operations.

The Vice President for Community Services provides the President with advice and counsel on outreach and community engagement. The Vice President is responsible for extending the University beyond its campuses and into San Antonio and South Texas through public service, extension, outreach, and community education. This is accomplished through the following: the Institute for Economic Development, the Institute of Texan Cultures, the Prefreshman Engineering Program, the Office of Community Outreach, the Office of Extended Education, the Downtown Campus Special Events Office, the UTSA Mexico Center, the Office of P-20 Initiatives, and the Child and Adolescent Policy Research Institute.

The Vice President for Research oversees all support services for research and other creative endeavors among all colleges, research institutes and collaborating partners. This is accomplished through the following offices: Vice President for Research, Senior Associate Vice President for Research, Sponsored Project Administration, Research Support, Research Integrity, Commercialization and Innovation.

The Vice President for Student Affairs is responsible for overseeing student life; financial aid and enrollment services; admissions, orientation and family programs; registrar; athletics and athletic academic support programs; student services, including counseling and health services; and for providing advice to administrators on all aspects of student activities at UTSA.

The Vice President for External Relations provides the President with advice and counsel for all areas of development, marketing, communications and alumni programs. The Vice President serves as Chief Development Officer and acts as a liaison between the Office of the President and University Development Board and the University’s Campaign Committee and serves as an executive-level representative of the President in the community. The Vice President is responsible for the development and management of plans and programs to produce and promote the University identity as a premier public research university. The Vice President is also directly responsible for alumni affairs with the academic colleges and coordination of the three University campuses.

Back to Top

UTSA Downtown Campus

The UTSA Downtown Campus began operation in 1994 with more than 900 students. Today, the campus houses the College of Architecture, the College of Public Policy, the Department of Counseling, the Department of Educational Psychology, and the Institute for Economic Development. It has an enrollment of nearly 6,000 students. The Downtown Campus consists of the Frio Street, the Buena Vista Street, the Durango, and the Monterey academic buildings; an on-campus parking facility; and several adjacent parking lots.

Those who live or work in the downtown area—both traditional and nontraditional students—are drawn to the campus because of its easy access and location, and also for the variety of programs offered. Programs particular to this campus attract students from all over Texas.

The UTSA undergraduate core curriculum is offered at the Downtown Campus, as well as a variety of courses leading to both bachelor’s and master’s degrees for several disciplines in architecture, business, liberal and fine arts, public policy, education, and the sciences. Many of the undergraduate courses required in transfer agreements with area community colleges and the coursework necessary to complete teaching certification programs are also offered. Doctoral degrees in Applied Demography and Counselor Education and Supervision are offered at the Downtown Campus.

The Downtown Campus provides professional development and career advancement for learners and helps identify solutions for rapidly changing public-sector needs. UTSA Downtown’s faculty, staff, and students provide research and service to support educational transformation in primary and secondary schools, conduct public policy research, foster urban-design creativity, and sponsor cultural enrichment opportunities.

Each of UTSA’s colleges offers support for students attending the Downtown Campus. Staff is available to assist students with admission and enrollment, tutoring, supplemental instruction, academic advising, and health and counseling services. The campus is equipped with a state-of-the-art student-computing center, a library, distance-learning facilities, a bookstore, a food court, and a visitor center. A student center, art gallery, recreation facility, sports court, and a professional-level theater enhance the academic experience.

UTSA Student Graduation Rate

UTSA serves undergraduate and graduate students from a wide range of backgrounds. Some undergraduate students are recent high school graduates; others are completing a degree after pursuing other goals. Some students work full time or part time and extend their education over a longer period of time, and some students enroll in classes for personal or professional enrichment but choose not to pursue a degree.

For students who began at UTSA in Fall 2006 as first-time freshmen enrolled full time as UTSA degree-seeking students, the graduation rate from UTSA within a six-year period was 31 percent. An additional 12 percent earned their bachelor’s degree from another Texas institution within six years. This rate does not include students who were part of the Coordinated Admission Program with the University of Texas at Austin or who were initially enrolled part-time.

Additionally, not considered in the calculation of this graduation rate are students who initially enrolled at UTSA as part-time students, who transferred to UTSA to complete their degrees after attending elsewhere, or who attended for reasons other than to obtain a degree.


The University of Texas at San Antonio is accredited by the Commission on Colleges of the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools to award baccalaureate, master’s, and doctorate degrees. Contact the Commission on Colleges at 1866 Southern Lane, Decatur, Georgia 30033-4097 or call 404-679-4500 for questions about the accreditation of The University of Texas at San Antonio.

Refer to Appendix H for more information and a complete list of accredited programs.

University Governance

University Assembly

The University Assembly is a governance body that operates to support The University of Texas at San Antonio. It is a broad-based, informational organization whose membership is made up of faculty, staff, undergraduate and graduate students, and administrators. The purpose of the Assembly is to propose to the President recommendations concerning subjects such as the conduct of members of the UTSA community now covered by the Campus Code of Conduct, the Statement of Student Rights, or any other issues relevant to the operation of the University as a whole that may affect its member population.

Faculty Senate

The Faculty Senate at The University of Texas at San Antonio is an academic advisory body that makes recommendations concerning academic affairs to the University President and the Provost. The Senate’s authority is in accordance with the Rules and Regulations of The University of Texas System Board of Regents. Subject to approval by the President and the Provost, the Faculty Senate provides and distributes faculty rules and procedures.

The Faculty Senate also has the authority to propose recommendations concerning issues related to academic policies; requirements for admission, graduation, honors, scholastic performance; and approval for degree candidates.

Graduate Council

The Graduate Council at The University of Texas at San Antonio is an operating unit of the Faculty Senate with representation developed independently of the Senate. The Council recommends graduate program policies and monitors their implementation across graduate programs and by the various graduate studies committees. Specific functions include developing recommendations concerning content of disciplinary and interdisciplinary programs and graduate curricula for existing graduate degrees and the establishment of new graduate degree programs, recommending and reviewing all graduate courses of instruction at UTSA, reviewing graduate programs and monitoring their quality, and recommending policies and standards for appointment of graduate students to be teaching assistants, teaching associates, research assistants, and recipients of University fellowships.

Members are elected to the Graduate Council by the members of each graduate program committee and by members of the graduate faculty of the programs’ graduate program committees. The Vice Provost and Dean of the Graduate School serves as an ex officio member. A student representative to the Graduate Council is elected by the members of the graduate faculty in each college.

Staff Council

The University of Texas at San Antonio’s Staff Council is an advisory organization that functions to communicate recommendations to the President which are unique to UTSA staff. The Staff Council is comprised of classified and administrative and professional staff. The President and the Board of Regents of The University of Texas System give the Staff Council the responsibility of continually promoting staff involvement in campus governance and building a sense of community. Staff Council is the consultative voice providing staff with advice on University policy and procedures, advising the University on staff nominations to various University Standing Committees, and encouraging staff development.

Back to Top