Welcome to The University of Texas at El Paso! We are delighted that you are interested in this great university. As you explore our website, you will find that UTEP offers academic and research excellence with innovative programs and services, outstanding faculty, and a university-wide commitment to student success.
UTEP is proud to be a top tier R1 doctoral research university with a 21st century student demographic. We have successfully transformed this university by pursuing a quest for excellence while strengthening our commitment to access, and thereby creating a new higher education model that is not only working in our setting, but attracting widespread respect and emulation. UTEP boasts many points of pride, including:
Top tier designation as an R1 doctoral research university. UTEP’s 2019 spring semester began with the good news that the University had attained an R1 designation (top tier doctoral university with very high research activity) in the Carnegie Classification of Institutions of Higher Education. UTEP is one of only 130 (4.5%) universities among the 2,883 four-year higher education institutions across the U.S. to earn this prestigious R1 distinction, joining the ranks of such universities as Stanford, M.I.T., Michigan, Arizona, California-Berkeley and UT Austin. This newly earned Carnegie R1 classification in the top tier of national research universities strongly validates UTEP’s success in delivering on our innovative access and excellence mission. It also powerfully affirms the stature of UTEP faculty researchers, the quality of their innovative work, and their competitiveness in securing funding to support it.
What makes UTEP’s rise to this R1 level even more impressive is our abiding campus commitment to access, which places a high priority on ensuring that research excellence always be accompanied by a deep and sustained access commitment. Engaging our students, both graduate and especially undergraduate, in this growing research activity at UTEP provides them with outstanding learning opportunities and raises their aspirations to pursue advanced degrees and research careers. Of significance, too, is that this R1 classification enhances UTEP’s national brand and increases the value of a UTEP degree.
Faculty described as the happiest in America. Author Gary Shteyngart took a bus trip across the country to find the happiest people in the U.S. His answer? Faculty at The University of Texas at El Paso. Shteyngart, associate professor of writing at Columbia University, made his claim during the “In My Humble Opinion” segment broadcast in November 2018 on the PBS NewsHour. He said the UTEP faculty he met led comfortable and content lives, but also had “a feeling that they were part of something bigger” because they used education to change the lives of their students. This generated hope, optimism and satisfaction among them.
UTEP’s growing enrollment. UTEP has surpassed an enrollment milestone of more than 25,000 students—a record that surely validates UTEP’s success in offering affordable access to higher education excellence for residents of a historically undereducated region. In fact, the U.S. Department of Education reported that UTEP’s net price (total cost of attendance minus financial aid and scholarships) is among the lowest of all U.S. research universities.
UTEP’s campus transformation. The new Centennial Plaza at the heart of our campus serves as the centerpiece of a Campus Transformation initiative that created a continuous pedestrian environment and more inviting outdoor spaces for studying, collaborating and relaxing. Together with the unifying Bhutanese architectural style of our buildings, the campus now promotes a climate conducive to enhancing the quality of life for students, faculty, staff and residents of the surrounding region. The Campus Transformation project was recognized by Green Business Certification Inc. (GBCI) as the first in the world to earn a SITES Silver Certification Award for achievement in landscape sustainability.
UTEP serves as an economic force. As one of the major economic engines in the Paso del Norte region, UTEP adds $1.4 billion annually in business volume to the region’s economy, and UTEP students donate more than 1 million hours of community service annually.
Our geographic location, on the border of the United States and Mexico, makes UTEP distinctive. UTEP students live and study in the world’s largest bi-national metropolitan area, unlike any other university setting. In addition to its border setting and beautiful mountainous terrain, El Paso consistently ranks as one of the safest cities of its size in the U.S.
UTEP shares a rich history with the surrounding region. We were founded in 1914 as the Texas School of Mines and Metallurgy, with 27 students and a handful of faculty and staff, to respond to the needs of the mining industry in the region at that time. From this modest beginning, UTEP has grown into a dynamic urban university that serves its more than 25,000 students enrolled in 74 bachelor’s, 74 master’s and 22 doctoral programs. UTEP is recognized nationally for its leadership role in changing the face of U.S. higher education. Our students, who are 80% Hispanic, mirror the population of this region and, increasingly, that of Texas and the United States. UTEP’s success in serving as a catalyst for economic development and quality of life in this region has placed us in the national spotlight as a model 21st century U.S. research university.
We can only give you here a quick glimpse of all that The University of Texas at El Paso has to offer. After your online visit, we invite you to tour our campus and become better acquainted with our people and programs. We look forward to sharing further with you our excitement at being a part of this very special university.