The University Co-op is committed to advance the educational interests of the University. True to this commitment, in late 1990-s the Co-op Board and President noticed the lack of university-wide recognition programs for the exceptional students and the first-rate faculty and staff at the University. The Co-op President Mr. George Mitchell worked with the University leadership at the time to create award programs - The Hamilton Book Awards for faculty and staff; The Granof Awards for Excellence in Graduate Education for graduate students; and The Mitchell Student Awards for Academic Excellence for undergraduate students.
All three awards programs are fully funded by the Co-op, including monetary prizes and the awards banquet.
Pictured above from our 2013 Mitchell Awards banquet, are past grand prize winners of the award with Mr. George H. Mitchell. From left to right: Brian Hardin, 2004 Winner, Electrical Engineering major; Seth Howes, 2006 Winner, Germanic Studies major; George Mitchell, President of the University Co-op; Christina Skelton, 2007 Winner, Geosciences and Linguistics majors; Baltej Ludher, 2008 Winner, Chemical Engineering major; Yuxuan Wang, 2009 Winner, Biochemistry major; Dylan Bumford, 2011 Winner, Linguistics, Mathematics, and Psychology major; and George Miller, 2012 Winner, Astronomy major. Not pictured are 2002 Winner Abigail Green, Biology major, 2003 Winner Lauren Banta, Radio-Television-Film major, 2005 Winner Emily Barton-Cole, Chemistry major, and 2010 Winner John Meyer, Government major.
George H. Mitchell Student Awards for Academic Excellence
In 1999, the University Co-op and the University of Texas at Austin established the George H. Mitchell Undergraduate Student Awards for Academic Excellence, named in honor of the University Co-op President George H. Mitchell. These awards acknowledge undergraduate students for their hard work and celebrate their extraordinary contributions to their fields of study.
Three students will receive awards of $2,000 each, three students awards of $3,000 each, and one student the top award of $10,000. The Office of the Executive Vice President and Provost provides a concurrent award of half the value of each student's award to the academic department in which the scholarly work was supervised.
The students nominated for these awards have an exemplary academic record and have an extraordinary contribution to their field of study by way of a research project, literary work, musical composition, humanitarian project, or similar undertaking. Students are nominated by UT faculty members and the winners are selected by the Awards Selection Committee composed of University faculty.
The Robert W. Hamilton Book Awards were established in 1997 to reward faculty publications and research. The book awards are named in honor of Dr. Robert W. Hamilton, past Chairperson of the University Co-op Board of Directors and the Minerva House Drysdale Regents Chair Emeritus in the School of Law.
The Robert W. Hamilton Book Awards are made to faculty or staff members who, in the preceding calendar year, have published the best book-length publications as determined by a multi-disciplinary committee of scholars appointed by the Vice President for Research of The University of Texas at Austin. Part of the Hamilton Book Awards program are three research awards that recognize outstanding achievement: Career Research Excellence Award, acknowledging a faculty member or staff researcher who has maintained superior research programs over many years; the Best Research Paper Award, presented to a faculty or staff researcher who is the principal or sole author of a peer-reviewed scholarly paper reporting original research, and the Creative Research Award, that recognizes extraordinary creative achievement. Awards range from $3,000 to $10,00
Michael H. Granof Awards for Excellence in Graduate Education
For many years, the University Co-op had supported the Graduate School awards by underwriting the various awards given by the school, but in 2008, the Michael H. Granof Awards for Excellence in Graduate Education were established to recognize outstanding achievement in the Graduate School. Awards are named in honor of the University Co-op Chairperson Michael H. Granof, Ernst & Young Distinguished Centennial Professor of Accounting and Distinguished Teaching Professor in both the McCombs School of Business and the LBJ School of Public Affairs. Awards are given in eight different categories in amounts ranging from $1,500 to $6,000.
The University Co-op's giving back to the university dates back to 1911 when the organization contributed $10,000 to complete the construction of the Gregory gym. Since then, the Co-op has been a major benefactor on campus for projects large and small. Below are just a few examples of the gifts made by the Co-op for the benefit of students, faculty and staff at the University of Texas at Austin.
Student Organization Funding
Each semester, the University Co-op allocates funds to registered student organizations to help with programs and events for the direct benefit of students at The University of Texas at Austin. Since 2002, the Co-op has donated over $1,566,291 to student organizations.
Since 2002, the University Co-op has given UT Athletics over $1,253,500 for programs such as the Men's and Women's Athletics Academic Awards, Women's Hall of Honor, and the Longhorn Foundation.
University Fashion Group Annual Fashion Show
As the title sponsor, the Co-op has donated over $448,150 since 2001 to the School of Human Ecology for the annual fashion show organized by University Fashion Group and the Division of Textiles and Apparel. The show is held at the Frank Erwin Center every year and features garments by senior apparel design students.
Since 2002, the University Co-op has donated over $1,400,000 to the Texas Exes for events and programs such as Camp Texas, Texas/OU weekend and scholarships. Texas Exes members enjoy a 10% discount at University Co-op
Office of the President
In 2006, the University Co-op made a one-time gift of $1,000,000 to create a discretionary fund administered by the Office of the President for the purpose of supporting enrichment programs for undergraduate students and facults who teach them.
School of Social Work's Utopia Theatre
In 2008, the University Co-op donated $450,000 to the renovation of the School of Social Work's Utopia Theatre. The theatre serves as a popular venue for many university and school events and lectures.
Co-op Fine Arts Student Center
In 2008, the University Co-op donated $300,000 for the creation of the Co-op Fine Arts Student Center. The redesigned and renovated space houses a large student lounge with Wi-Fi, an O's Campus Cafe, an ourdoor patio seating area, a large art exhibition space and the College of Fine Arts' division of Student Affairs and Career Services offices.
With questions or comments about the Co-op's philanthropy, please contact the Executive Office at 512-322-7024 or firstname.lastname@example.org
The University Co-op Presents: Texas Revue is the largest, most diverse, student-run talent show held on campus. This annual tradition showcases a variety of acts including dancing, music and skits by student organizations and individual performers. Since 2002, the Co-op has donated $498,000 to this event. The Co-op was the title sponsor until 2012.
The University of Texas at Austin Subvention Grants program is designed to assist faculty authors in the publication of scholarly books. Between 1997 and 2011, the Co-op contributed over $595,000 to this program.
Undergraduate Research Fellowship
The Undergraduate Research Fellowship covers costs associated with independant research projects proposed by UT undergraduate students. The University Co-op has provided $1,000,000 for this fellowship program between 2003 and 2011, benefitting thousands of students.
For ten years, the University Co-op was the exclusive sponsor of Explore UT, the annual open house event for schoolchildren and families to experience one of America's great teaching and research universities. To date, the Co-op has donated over $885,000 for this program.
Gone to Texas
For ten years the University Co-op was the main sponsor of Gone to Texas. The annual welcoming event for incoming students introduces the traditions of the institution and core purpose, values and honor code of the university. To date, the Co-op has donated over $990,000 for this event.
Co-op GOES Study Abroad Program
For eight years, the University Co-op funded a study abroad scholarship for UT students through the Co-op Global Opportunities in Education Scholarship (Co-op GOES) award program. Over $1,400,000 was donated to the Provost's office for these scholarships, which enabled hundreds of students who were not otherwise able to study abroad to take advantage of this once in a lifetime experience.