Bobcats often proclaim their university to be the rising star of Texas, and those in the campus community may soon be able to say it is the rising research university of America.
The Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching reclassified Texas State to the second-highest designation for research institutions.
According to the foundation’s website, one of its main goals is organizing for improvement through networked improvement communities. The classification for universities is measured by research expenditures, number of research doctorates awarded, number of research-focused faculty and other factors.
The Carnegie classification is used to recognize universities all over the country that are the top in their research efforts, facilities, faculty and students. The foundation was established in 1905 and has been recognizing research efforts of universities in the United States for over 40 years.
Texas State’s new classification is “Doctoral Universities: Higher Research Activity,” which is the second highest classification in the country under the Carnegie research classification system. This comes after Texas State’s implementation of several research and doctoral programs.
Michael Blanda, assistant vice president for research and federal relations at Texas State feels the classification has been achieved through the hard-work and evolution as a university.
“This reclassification really reflects who we are as an institution and the kind of culture we’ve developed—the culture of learning, discovery, and innovation,” Blanda said.
Texas State is one of eight universities in the state to be classified as an Emerging Research University by the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board. This has allowed for Texas State to receive state funding to further advance its research programs.
By receiving this classification, the university became eligible for the Texas Research Incentive Program, as well as the Governor’s University Research Initiative. Both of these programs open up many opportunities for the university to receive funding for research efforts.
Gracie White, undergraduate research intern and wildlife biology senior, feels Texas State is “very lucky” to have a committed faculty and staff that have worked to improve and evolve to receive the classification.
“It feels great to know that Texas State is being recognized for their research efforts, especially being a biology undergrad and on a research team. It’s inspiring,” White said. “We live in such a diverse area and the campus is full of brilliant people who care about it and want to continue to learn more about it, and that’s why we continue to gain recognition for our researching efforts.”
Blanda thinks Texas State being reclassified by the Carnegie Foundation is a reflection of the developments the university has made to be seen as a research university. It has been a collective effort of all of the departments and students committed to learning.
“Through this entire process, our greatest strength has been, and will continue to be the fact that the whole community, not only the school, wants to see this research status for Texas State,” Blanda said.
There are currently 11 doctoral programs available. The two classifications Texas State has received will allow for funding to be allocated for expansion of research and doctoral programs.
“As a senior at Texas State, it’s comforting to know that the school is continuing to expand its post-undergrad programs so that if I wanted to continue my education, I can remain a Bobcat and get a top rated education,” White said.
Blanda feels the university has taken a satisfying step in a long process that will require hard work and dedication to make Texas State recognized as a top research university in the country.
“We have accomplished several of the goals we have set for ourselves in a shorter amount of time than expected,” Blanda said. “That can, of course, always change, but at the rate we’re moving I don’t see us doing anything but progressing as a top research university.”