2020 Messages & Speeches

2020


message

Interim Provost and VP for Research

I am writing to let you know I have appointed Vice President for Research Dan Jaffe to serve as interim executive vice president and provost, beginning May 18. I want to thank Dr. Jaffe for stepping up to serve in this crucial role for UT, especially as the university is responding to the COVID-19 crisis.

KEEP READING: Interim Provost and VP for Research
message

Mid-Week Check In

We are now midway through our first week of online learning at UT, and I am grateful for the amazing effort you have put in to make this transition...During the first two days, tens of thousands of students participated in classes, logging a total of more than 13 million minutes online.

KEEP READING: Mid-Week Check In
message

Continuing the Spring Semester Online

On Monday, the spring semester resumes, with all UT courses held online. So much has changed during these past two weeks, yet when it comes to being a student, your goals have not. You came to the Forty Acres to get a UT education, and that’s what our faculty and staff members will continue to provide. We want every student to complete your classes this semester.

KEEP READING: Continuing the Spring Semester Online
message

Maurie McInnis Named President of Stony Brook University - SUNY

I am writing to let you know that Executive Vice President and Provost Maurie McInnis will be leaving The University of Texas at Austin near the end of this semester to become president of Stony Brook University, one of the premier research universities in the State University of New York System. 

KEEP READING: Maurie McInnis Named President of Stony Brook University - SUNY
message

Helping UT Students During the COVID-19 Crisis

The health and safety of our students in this unprecedented crisis is our most important responsibility. Although moving classes online and having students off campus is essential for the public health, it has caused major disruptions in their lives. Many students need emergency support from UT.

KEEP READING: Helping UT Students During the COVID-19 Crisis
message

City of Austin “Stay Home – Work Safe” Order

Today, the City of Austin and Travis County announced “Stay Home – Work Safe” orders to help contain the spread of COVID-19 in our community. These orders will have a significant impact on life in our city during the weeks ahead and directly affect the thousands of employees who keep the university moving forward.

KEEP READING: City of Austin “Stay Home – Work Safe” Order
message

New COVID-19 Cases in UT Community

Earlier today, we learned that two additional members of our UT community have tested positive for COVID-19 (coronavirus), including the first UT student. Unfortunately, we expect that many more cases will be detected during the coming days and weeks. 

KEEP READING: New COVID-19 Cases in UT Community
message

UT Austin: Our New Reality

The spread of COVID-19 has changed our lives for the months ahead. This is true for every member of Longhorn Nation...I know that many of you have reached out in recent days to express your concern and to offer support to those students who are struggling. I am grateful for these offers of generosity and kindness. 

KEEP READING: UT Austin: Our New Reality
message

Moving to Online Classes

Starting on March 30, the university will be moving all spring semester classes online. We are asking students not to return to campus this semester unless there is a specific need. This decision has been made to protect the health and safety of all members of the UT community and reduce the spread of COVID-19 within the university and beyond. 

KEEP READING: Moving to Online Classes
message

UT Operations Update | March 15

The plan, as of now, is to resume classes on March 30 — two weeks from now. However, this plan may change as public health circumstances evolve. Our faculty members are planning to teach as many classes as possible online. Social distancing procedures will be introduced for other classes and in residence halls, dining halls, libraries, workspaces and student spaces. 

KEEP READING: UT Operations Update | March 15
message

COVID-19 Identified within UT Community

As you know, today we canceled classes at UT and closed the university. My main concern at this time is the health and well-being of UT students, faculty, staff and community members. We took this action because the first case of COVID-19 (coronavirus) within our UT community was confirmed this morning. 

KEEP READING: COVID-19 Identified within UT Community
message

Changing Spring Break

I am writing to announce that I have decided to extend spring break for students by one week in response to the spread of COVID-19 (coronavirus). Classes will resume on campus on Monday, March 30, and students should plan on returning prior to that date. 

KEEP READING: Changing Spring Break
message

Canceling Explore UT

As a result of the spread of the coronavirus, city and county leaders today declared a state of disaster in Austin and canceled the upcoming South by Southwest Festival...On Saturday we were going to host our annual Explore UT event. Now, because of the city’s declaration and the specific nature of the event, I have decided to cancel it.

KEEP READING: Canceling Explore UT
message

Coronavirus Precautions

Based on current information from public health officials, all classes, programs and operations are continuing as usual on campus. The university is monitoring many trusted sources of information on COVID-19, and we will keep you informed and provide updates on our website as the situation evolves. 

KEEP READING: Coronavirus Precautions
message

Changing Sexual Misconduct Policies at UT Austin

During the past four months, consultants from the Husch Blackwell firm met with UT Austin students, staff members and faculty members and led a comprehensive review of the university’s sexual misconduct policies. The first phase of the review is now complete.

KEEP READING: Changing Sexual Misconduct Policies at UT Austin
message

Improving Safety in the West Campus Neighborhood

Today, the UT System Board of Regents approved new funding for public safety and security measures at UT Austin, focused on the West Campus area adjacent to our campus.

KEEP READING: Improving Safety in the West Campus Neighborhood
speech

Michael & Susan Dell Foundation Partnership Kick-Off

This is the speech President Fenves gave to announce a transformative student-focused partnership between the Michael & Susan Dell Foundation and UT.

KEEP READING: Michael & Susan Dell Foundation Partnership Kick-Off
message

An Extraordinary New Partnership with the Dell Foundation

The Michael & Susan Dell Foundation is one of the foremost philanthropic organizations in the world. They also happen to be our neighbors here in Austin. Susan and Michael Dell have contributed so much to the community and to The University of Texas at Austin.

KEEP READING: An Extraordinary New Partnership with the Dell Foundation
message

Last Night's Student Forum

Last night, UT students hosted a forum to discuss sexual misconduct within our community. Many of you showed great courage in sharing your personal stories and asking difficult questions about how the university addresses, and communicates about, instances of misconduct.

KEEP READING: Last Night's Student Forum
message

Safety Near Campus

An increase in violent crime in Austin in recent months has renewed concerns in our community about safety in areas around campus. We are currently developing a plan to hire additional police officers, expand patrols, and upgrade security-related technology in West Campus. 

KEEP READING: Safety Near Campus
speech

MLK Day Community Rally and March, 2020

The speech President Fenves gave during the program for the 2020 Martin Luther King Jr. Day Community March and Rally after being introduced by Cherise Smith, Chair of UT’s African & African Diaspora Studies Department and Executive Director of the Galleries at Black Studies.

KEEP READING: MLK Day Community Rally and March, 2020
message

Welcome Back to the Forty Acres!

I hope you enjoyed your winter break and were able to spend time with family and friends during the holidays. It was wonderful to see so many of you at yesterday’s Martin Luther King Jr. Day march and rally on the East Mall.

KEEP READING: Welcome Back to the Forty Acres!

See all Messages & Speeches