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Austin College Current Events Tradition

The Eyes of Texas Are Upon You

In the news recently is a group of Longhorns student-athletes who, among other things, have asked The University of Texas at Austin to stop singing The Eyes of Texas.

https://twitter.com/BrennanEagles/status/1271518098248667139

The Eyes of Texas is rooted as satire making fun of then-University President Prather who used the phrase “The eyes of Texas are upon you” in speeches to the University community.

He took the phrase from General Robert E. Lee, while he was president of Washington University where Prather was a student, who said “the eyes of the South are upon you”.

The song itself was written and sung by a group of university students who first performed the song at a minstrel show, which means it is pretty likely that it was performed in blackface.

On one hand, I love the notion that “the eyes of Texas are upon you”. Prescribed by the state’s constitution, we are the state’s first-class university, meant to be the crown jewel of the higher learning of Texas. The notion that the entire state looks at what The University is doing resonates with me.

The tune itself is just I’ve Been Working on the Railroad—which is not that interesting musically and, notably, not without it’s own controversial minstrel origins.

Alternatively, “What Starts Here Changes The World” has been the University’s slogan for nearly 20 years now and celebrates UT’s role as an international university of note. The eyes of Texas aren’t all that are upon us.

At the end of the day, the University is a living organization. Traditions change over time. Some of them we can remember and acknowledge that maybe they weren’t the best idea. Some of them can change over time.

My affiliation is first to the friends I made while at the University and to my own evolution that took place there. Secondly, it is to the institution as it is now—my role as an alumnus to support the next generation and to learn from them. Lastly, it is to the traditions that existed in my time.

I’ll always have my memories of those traditions and what they meant to me at the time. I’m not ashamed of my ignorance at the time. As an university of the first class, meant to be an intellectual beacon of exploration, I would be ashamed if the University refused to advance forward.

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Austin College Food Microblog

Texas Leading Innovation

This is why I chose UT-Austin for my undergraduate education. An institution of the first class, they solve problems that most aren't yet aware exists.

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Austin Instagram Photoblog

Reflecting Tower

Photo taken at: UT Turtle Pond

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Austin College Photoblog Reflections

Congrats!

Congratulations to Class of 2016. Tonight, at The University of Texas at Austin, the annual commencement on the Main Mall culminates four, five, six, seven, maybe eight years of academic work in a festive ceremony, complete with fireworks.

The Mall is ready.

towermay2016.jpg

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Austin College

RIP Bevo XIV

https://www.facebook.com/texasexes/videos/10153168254491500/

Bevo XIV, the mascot of the Texas Longhorns died in his sleep. He started his reign during my time at UT and presided over much success for the University—both in athletics and academics.

In an era where very few schools have “live” mascots, I’m glad that UT continues the tradition. RIP Bevo XIV.

UPDATE: I really do think of the Aggies as a brother. Get annoyed with them sometimes, but really do love them at the end of the day.

https://twitter.com/tamu/status/655091353215352832

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Austin College Photoblog

Life Certificate

Hook ‘Em!