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UTSA 2010 –Back to the Future

May 24, 2010

As 2010 rapidly comes to a close, ending the first decade of the 21st century, we thought we would look back to see how UTSA envisioned itself in the year 2010. In 1990, as part of the strategic planning process at UTSA, President Samuel Kirkpatrick briefly outlined the attributes and characteristics of the UTSA campus 20 years into the future. In his succinct essay, “UTSA 2010,” which reads more like a philosophical reflection than a strategic plan, Kirkpatrick touches upon the values and philosophy that would hopefully guide the university through the next twenty years.

UTSA 2010 plan, ca. 1990.

The UTSA 2010 essay is interesting both for what it envisions UTSA will and will not be in 2010. Kirkpatrick suggests that UTSA in 2010 will be noted for its cultural and gender diversity, planned and “conscious” growth, and a commitment to creating a rewarding student life that “sets it apart from other metropolitan universities.” But just as importantly, UTSA will be defined for avoiding many of the pitfalls that accompanied the growth of large-scale public education in the United States. Kirkpatrick foresees UTSA growing in size and academic stature, without focusing on “excessive specialization,” “rampant vocationalism,” “ad hocracy,” and avoiding the culture of other academic institutions that created “a student pathology rooted in mid-century trends and were characterized by little sense of community and a lack of integration between academic life and student life.”

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