Reporting Texas
News and features from UT-Austin's School of Journalism
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Dec 07, 2022

Construction Funding, New School Board Bring Changes, Optimism to Austin Public Schools

Travis High School was built in 1953, making it the oldest high school in South Austin, and a broken heating system is hardly the first issue to arise in the aging facilities. The school will soon get a major renovation to fix much more than the heating. The Austin Independent School District is set to receive $252 million to construct a modern facility completely replacing the old Travis High. 
The renovation of Travis High is part of $2.44 billion in bonds that Austin voters approved in November, when they also elected five former teachers to the district’s board of trustees. With the district facing stagnant state funding, a teacher shortage and decreased enrollment, AISD leaders see the election results as setting a new course for Austin public schools. 
“The community said they are willing to pay to improve our schools, but simultaneously they said they want new leadership on the board to guide this money,” said Ken Zarifis, president of Education Austin, the labor union for Austin school employees.

Dec 06, 2022

From the Military to the Kitchen, These Veterans Are Choosing a Career That Brings Out Their Passion for Food

The smell of spices and chicken had people lining up at an Austin food festival to get Shirley Newell’s Dominican food. The U.S. Army veteran was rapidly taking orders, flipping her marinated chicken and packing food to-go. “Food is my comfort, my passion and how I express myself,” Newell said. “When I was in the military is when I actually started cooking.”
Now, cooking is her livelihood. She started Phatty Boy food truck nine years after she left the Army as an automated logistics specialist. For some Texas veterans, opening food-service businesses feels like a natural step after their military career.

Dec 05, 2022

‘I Can’t Let You Down’: How Mexican Truckers Are Easing U.S. Driver Shortage While Helping Their Families Back Home

For Juan Martinez and his truck, a trip usually lasts from Monday to Saturday, starting in Mexico and going north into the United States before returning home. He is one of thousands of truck drivers from Mexico, taking jobs to haul freight across the border under a 1991 commercial trucking agreement between the United States and Mexico.
The opportunity of a higher salary is driving more Mexicans with a B1 visitor visa to a profession that is constantly struggling with a worker shortage.
But the industry still needs 78,000 drivers, “The price of everything we buy is going to go up,” said a manager for trucking company, “because it’s going to cost more to move it, because we have less drivers that want to move it.”

Dec 05, 2022

Reporting Texas TV – December 1, 2022

Journalism students from Moody College at the University of Texas produced their sixth and final newscast of the semester on Dec. 1, 2022. This week student journalists report on a recent surge in respiratory viruses, a campus program that offers affordable fresh produce, and a UT program to provide free food and professional clothing to […]

Dec 01, 2022

Reporting Texas Newsletter Dec. 1, 2022

Download the Dec. 1 Edition of the Reporting Texas Newsletter

Dec 01, 2022

Earlier Than Expected Spike in Respiratory Viruses

AUSTIN, Texas – COVID-19 cases may have slowed but many in the U.S. are now dealing with other respiratory illnesses. The University of Texas at Austin’s University Health Services staff is seeing an increase in students coming in with respiratory illnesses earlier than expected. UHS executive director and Chief Medical Officer Dr. Terrance Hines said […]

Dec 01, 2022

Reporting Texas Newsletter Nov. 17, 2022

Download the Nov. 17 Edition of the Reporting Texas Newsletter

Dec 01, 2022

UT Outpost Accepting Donations and Volunteers For The Holiday

AUSTIN, Texas – UT Outpost has a plan to help students in need stay well stocked for the holidays. In preparation for an anticipated increase in demand, the center has brought in some extra help. UT Outpost is a free food pantry and career closet located on campus at 2609 University Ave. Operating under the […]

Dec 01, 2022

UT Farm Stand Provides Accessible and Affordable Fresh Produce to Students

AUSTIN, Texas — Dozens of students lined up on Speedway on a chilly Wednesday morning to buy fresh fruits, vegetables and other groceries at the UT Farm Stand. The Farm Stand is a student-run program with the aim to provide students with healthy, high-quality food at low prices. Soaring food costs have made fresh produce […]

Dec 01, 2022

Into the Tunnels: Austin’s Electronic Dance Underground

The scene looked like the Cavern in Liverpool, England, reminiscent of the early days of the Beatles. The space was dark and dank. Candles flickered, while party lights illuminated the work of graffiti taggers.

Amidst it all HONEY — the performing name of Eric Wieser — worked his turntable and manipulated his electronic mixes to drive his audience into a jubilant dance in Austin’s underground.

“I have to remind myself that the goal isn’t necessarily to be the king of the underground or the king of odd, cool, obscure kinds of parties,” Weiser said. “I make sure that I’m enjoying it in the time that it’s happening.”

Underground parties are private, smaller events that are held in secret locations for a limited audience. They consist of multiple live DJs playing electronic dance music that is much heavier than the mainstream tunes that are mixed at bars. These raves are usually an inclusive, diverse environment held at warehouses, run down homes or in this case tunnels. Wieser started After Hours, a set of tunnel events, after noticing a lack of uniqueness in the party scene in Austin.

Nov 28, 2022

Reporting Texas TV – November 17, 2022

Journalism students from Moody College at the University of Texas produced their fifth newscast of the semester on November 17, 2022. This week student journalists report on ESPN College Gameday’s second trip to Austin this season, changes in student seating and ticketing for basketball games as the Longhorns tip off the Moody Center’s inaugural season, […]

Nov 17, 2022

Moody Center Lines Call for Early Arrivals and Mobile Tickets

AUSTIN, Texas — The new Moody Center had long lines of students at the Nov. 10 Texas Longhorns basketball game against the Houston Christian Huskies. The desire to get a good seat caused students to get in line early. UT sophomore Javier Diaz De Sandi arrived at the game about two hours before tip-off. “I […]

Nov 17, 2022

Freshmen When COVID-19 Hit Are Now Graduating — What College Was Like for the “COVID Class”

AUSTIN,  Texas — The first group of students from the “COVID class” will graduate next month. These students were freshmen at the University of Texas when the COVID-19 pandemic hit in March 2020, and their college experience differed from any other generation of Longhorns because of it. Internships Daphne Wolfe, UT’s Assistant Director of Career […]

Nov 17, 2022

Issues, Voting Challenges Made Midterms Personal for Highly Engaged Students

Young voters across a divided nation are being credited by political analysts for preventing a Republican-dominated midterm from coming to life. Yet, that “red wave” did come to shore in the Lone Star State. Every statewide Republican candidate won by double percentage points, and a frustration from the large majority of UT students the day after the election was palpable. Still, at UT Austin, the lead-up to the 2022 midterm election was marked by a strong passion from students getting out the vote and campaigning for ideas and candidates they believed in.

Nov 17, 2022

College Gameday Sparks Excitement on Campus for the Second Time this Season

AUSTIN, Texas — College Gameday returned to Austin on Nov. 12 for a second visit this season for the matchup between the Texas Longhorns and the TCU Horned Frogs. College Gameday is a Saturday morning ESPN show that travels across the country to different college campuses. Hosted by Rece Davis, the show features former football […]

Nov 16, 2022

Electric Vehicle Charging Set to Expand in Rural Texas in Next Five Years 

Planning a long-distance trip in an electric vehicle can be tricky, especially in rural parts of Texas where electric vehicle charging stations can be sparse. Texas is working to improve rural access to charging stations. The Federal Highway Administration in September approved $408 million to help the state government to install EV charging stations along designated alternative fuel corridors.

Nov 15, 2022

Reporting Texas Newsletter Nov. 10, 2022

Download the Nov. 10 Edition of the Reporting Texas Newsletter  

Nov 13, 2022

Reporting Texas TV – November 10, 2022

Journalism students from Moody College at the University of Texas produced their fourth newscast of the semester on November 10, 2022. This week student journalists report on the attempted kidnapping of a woman identified by police as a UT student and the search for her attacker, continued delays in the opening of a student housing […]

Nov 13, 2022

Skulls and Flowers Fill Austin in Honor of Day of the Dead 

AUSTIN, Texas – The end of October brings a celebration of Halloween for many, but for others, a more important celebration begins the next day at the start of November. As Mexican tradition dictates, Dia de los Muertos — the Day of the Dead — is a date on which loved ones who are no […]

Nov 13, 2022

Attempted Kidnapping Raises Safety Concerns in West Campus

AUSTIN, Texas — An attempted kidnapping in West Campus is raising safety concerns among the community.  Officers from the Austin Police Department and the University of Texas Police Department responded to an emergency call at the 2700 block of Nueces St. early in the morning of Oct. 30. Investigators said the victim was able to escape. […]