University of Houston System regents Friday decided to wait for more suggestions before choosing a new moniker for UH-Downtown, concerned that "South Texas" made no reference to the city and overlaps with South Texas College of Law. They said the process, which came up with the suggested name in about a month, had been rushed.
"UH-Downtown has great programs, deans, professors and graduates," said Welcome W. Wilson Sr., chairman of the board. "It doesn't have an identity. It is an invisible university. However, maybe the time frame is a bit short. It could be that four weeks (was) not enough."
Regents voted in December to change the name of UH-Downtown to increase recognition and distinguish it from the University of Houston's largest campus. But coming up with a new name is a ticklish matter, guaranteed to offend some, including those who believe no change is needed.
"We can vet some more names, but we are never going to get a consensus," UH-Downtown President Max Castillo said after the meeting. "Any change is going to get dialogue, contention and debate. I think we've done our due diligence in bringing this (name) forth."
A special university committee solicited faculty, student and public input before recommending University of South Texas. It sent out surveys, conducted focus groups and considered scores of names, including some that sounded like a bank (Fidelity State University), a charter school (Challenger State University), a Soviet institution (People's State University) and a very distant outpost (Houston Lunar University).
Some regents said the name simply did not appeal to them . Others thought the similarity to South Texas College of Law -- or even Texas Southern University -- could present problems.
UPDATE: Sandra was at the meeting on Friday, and provides a report. She does not like "Houston Metropolitan University". Mean Green Cougar Red, who thinks HMU isn't so bad, and Stace, who prefers "University of South Texas", have more.Posted by Charles Kuffner on February 08, 2009 to Elsewhere in Houston