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UT invites all to biggest open house in Texas; UT Interactive highlights educational, research and cultural resources

The University of Texas at Austin will present an extraordinary open house where everyone can see firsthand its tremendous educational, research and cultural resources.

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AUSTIN, Texas—The University of Texas at Austin will present an extraordinary open house where everyone can see firsthand its tremendous educational, research and cultural resources.

UT Interactive: A Campus-wide Exploration will feature about 400 programs and activities sponsored by every UT college, department and administrative unit. The event, which is free and open to the public, will be held on the UT campus from noon until 6 p.m. on Saturday, March 6. Highlights include the Texas debut of the world-renowned Suida-Manning art collection of Old Masters and the Alamo diary, a Mexican soldier’s fascinating eyewitness account of the battle and Davy Crockett’s death.

UT President Larry R. Faulkner says UT Interactive offers an unparalleled opportunity for Texans to sample the diversity available on campus and to gain a clearer understanding of The University’s role in shaping the state’s future.

"The University of Texas at Austin and its distinctive Tower are symbols of the aspirations of the people of this state," Faulkner says. "We look forward to welcoming everyone to the biggest open house in Texas — UT Interactive. UT is the largest academic enterprise in the nation, and it belongs to all Texans. March 6th will be an outstanding opportunity for visitors to experience firsthand the vast educational resources of this institution."

Larry Speck, dean of the School of Architecture and chair of the Texas Theme Initiative steering committee that created the idea for UT Interactive, says the event will appeal to children, prospective students and adults. "The general public never traipses across campus, so many people don’t have a sense of what goes on here," he says. "This is a chance for people to see first-hand that UT is not just a place where students take classes, but a place that instills creativity and enriches lives. I think people will be surprised at how they can tap into our resources."

For example, in the course of one afternoon, visitors can see some of the University’s best instructors in action, participate in hands-on arts and educational activities, attend panel discussions on a variety of contemporary issues, view world-renowned artwork, see and sample futuristic technology, learn about cutting-edge research from the scientists themselves and even go one-on-one with Longhorn athletes. Visitors also will be able to take behind-the-scenes tours of University facilities and to learn how to take advantage of online resources to connect to UT.

UT faculty, staff and students are working together to plan UT Interactive events that illustrate the breadth and depth of the University’s activities. Michael Starbird, professor of mathematics and chairman of UT Interactive, says the result is an unprecedented opportunity for visitors to see how the future is taking shape at UT.

"We want people to come to UT to experience the future, to see how our teaching and research make a real difference to Texas and the world, and how our faculty, staff and students make a difference," says Starbird, who has taught at UT since 1974. "What I’ve learned from this process so far is that UT is an amazing place, and the more you learn, the more amazing it is."