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Greater Houston HUB

Over the past 20 years, Houston's higher education institutions have significantly increased capacity and graduation rates. Institutions, in partnership with business, have maintained a regional focus on developing tomorrow's workforce through education of and preparation for high-demand careers. The momentum must continue in order to build a regional workforce to support a strong, diverse 21st century economy.

Developing Houston as a Center of Academic Excellence Aligned with a 21st Century Economy

The Greater Houston HUB is an initiative that unites higher education and business leaders focused on: 

  • Growing Houston’s current and future talent by creating a sustainable partnership between industry and higher education institutions
  • Supporting the growth of Houston’s higher education ecosystem by increasing student enrollment, student quality, degrees awarded and available funding sources
  • Improving perception of Houston as an innovation hub through the talent and research produced by the region’s higher education institutions

The Greater Houston HUB is committed to increased strategic collaboration between industry and higher education institutions to sustain the region’s prolonged academic and economic growth.  

Higher Education Institutions

The Houston region is home to more than 20 universities and colleges, including three Tier 1 universities. Houston-area colleges and universities educate nearly 230,000 students and graduate more than 56,000 students annually. In addition, another estimated 200,000 students are enrolled annually in local community and technical colleges. 

Local Universities

Institution

Texas A&M University-College Station

Undergraduate enrollment: 50,707

University of Houston

Undergraduate enrollment: 36,092

Sam Houston State University

Undergraduate enrollment: 18,416

University of Houston-Downtown

Undergraduate enrollment: 12,079

Lamar University

Undergraduate enrollment: 9,129

Prairie View A&M University

Undergraduate enrollment: 7,974

Texas Southern University

Undergraduate enrollment: 7,967

University of Houston-Clear Lake

Undergraduate enrollment: 5,798

UT Health Science Center-Houston

Graduate enrollment: 4,533

Rice University

Undergraduate enrollment: 3,970

University of Houston-Victoria, Katy Campus

Undergraduate enrollment: 3,317

UT Medical Branch-Galveston

Graduate enrollment: 2,569

Houston Baptist University

Undergraduate enrollment: 2,316

Texas A&M Health Science Center

Graduate enrollment: 2,295

University of Phoenix-Texas

Undergraduate enrollment: 2,256

University of St. Thomas

Undergraduate enrollment: 1,864

Texas A&M University at Galveston

Undergraduate enrollment: 1,848

Baylor College of Medicine

Graduate enrollment: 1,577

UT M.D. Anderson Cancer Center

Undergraduate enrollment: 1,577

Art Institute of Houston

Undergraduate enrollment: 1,364

South Texas College of Law Houston

Graduate enrollment: 980

Community Colleges

Institution

Lone Star College System

Undergraduate enrollment: 69,452

Houston Community College

Undergraduate enrollment: 49,782

San Jacinto Community College District

Undergraduate enrollment: 35,455

Blinn College District

Undergraduate enrollment: 18,465

Lee College

Undergraduate enrollment: 7,717

Wharton County Junior College

Undergraduate enrollment: 7,050

Alvin Community College

Undergraduate enrollment: 5,709

College of the Mainland Community College District

Undergraduate enrollment: 4,328

Brazosport College

Undergraduate enrollment: 4,229

Lamar Institute of Technology

Undergraduate enrollment: 2,983

Galveston College

Undergraduate enrollment: 2,197

Texas State Technical College-Fort Bend

Undergraduate enrollment: 412

Bold Goals for Higher Education

The Greater Houston HUB has bold goals for bolstering Houston's higher education ecosystem. Here's how success will be measured: 

  • Increasing bachelor degree production
  • Growing high value, high growth tech degree production
  • Closing the funding gap between Houston and TX MSAs
  • Boosting Houston's attractiveness and reputation by adding recognized faculty by National Academies and growing the number of alumni from top Texas higher education institutions moving to Houston
Working with the Partnership and business community...is going to be important to helping our institutions develop more capacity and expertise to engage those looking for new career opportunities.
Greater Houston HUB Members

Related News

Aerospace & Aviation

NASA Administrator Underscores Houston’s Crucial Role in the Future of Aerospace

12/18/20
NASA Administrator Jim Bridenstine discussed how the agency has persevered through the pandemic and what is on the horizon for the aerospace industry, including Houston’s role, at the Partnership’s inaugural State of Space event. Home to one of NASA’s largest R&D facilities, Houston has been an epicenter for human space exploration. Since the historic Apollo missions, Houston has grown, innovated and pioneered many advancements and technologies that have changed the world. "Despite an economically challenging year, Houston's aerospace industry continues to flourish," said Partnership President and CEO Bob Harvey. "With some projecting the commercial space industry to become a trillion-dollar business over the next 20 years, Space City will continue to lead in aerospace innovation." Johnson Space Center Director Mark Geyer kicked off the program noting the significant of last month’s 20-year anniversary of continuous human habitation in space. He went on to underscore Houston’s role to the U.S. space program and recent initiatives.  The Johnson Space Center is working on the Artemis program’s Orion crew capsule, which will take humans to the lunar surface for the first time since the Apollo program in 1972, including the first woman. It is also working on the Gateway, a small space station orbiting the moon that will allow for the redeployment of human landers.  “All of these things position Houston to be a leader and a focal point for this new commercial space ecosystem, which is national and global in nature,” said Geyer.  A point later underscored by Bridenstine during his keynote address.  "We are very fortunate to have a center like Johnson in a city like Houston — a city that produces talent, that has an amazing workforce, a dedication to education and to the STEM fields,” said Bridenstine.  He went on to discuss the commercialization of space and the exciting projects underway, including returning man to the Moon and later Mars, through bipartisan efforts.  During his 30-month tenure as NASA Administrator, Bridenstine has led America’s most serious push to put astronauts on the moon since the Apollo era. His vision for NASA has been to end the partisan divides of the past and bring together interdisciplinary teams to create sustainable programs for decades, and generations, to come. The scientific discoveries undertaken through space exploration have tremendous impact to our life here on earth.  When asked about Houston’s potential for attracting future commercial space business, Bridenstine emphasized the importance that Mission Control has had, and will continue to have, in the next era of space exploration.  "The Johnson Space Center is quite well positioned for attracting a lot of commercial industry and international partners," said Bridenstine.  The missions of tomorrow – to the moon, to Mars and beyond – are being planned today by scientists and engineers who call Houston home.   To learn more about Houston's aerospace and aviation industry, click here.   
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Education

Rebooting Community Colleges to Get Americans Back to Work

12/15/20
In the early 1980s, roughly two thirds of American jobs were open to individuals with only a high school diploma; by 2019, two thirds of American jobs require more education beyond high school, according to the Washington, D.C.-based think tank and policy shop Opportunity America. Many jobs now require more education and skills than a high school diploma but not a four-year college degree. What’s more, as the COVID-19 pandemic precipitated layoffs and accelerated the pace of digitalization of the workplace, it sharply increased the need for immediate upskilling of American workers to re-enter or remain in the workforce. The nation’s 1,100 two-year community and technical colleges can be where traditional students gain the knowledge, skills and credentials they need to start careers and where non-traditional students learn new skills to maintain or improve their career prospects. But is a reboot necessary in order for them to better serve their students? Community colleges across the nation have long held a number of primary missions: Graduate students who transfer to four-year colleges or universities (the credit side); graduate students with applied technical degrees and certificates (the credit side); and provide individuals with short-term job-focused upskilling to get them to a better job (the non-credit side). Many strive to fulfill these missions and there is room to align and improve the workforce outcomes of their students regardless of their pathway. According to Opportunity America data, close to 12 million students were enrolled in community colleges before the pandemic, with close to half enrolled in credit programs. Roughly 77 percent of students who enroll in credit courses expect to attain a bachelor’s degree but only 13 percent do. This summer, Opportunity America released a report calling upon community colleges to reboot and place workforce education more at the center of their mission and culture and embrace their role as the nation’s premier provider of job-focused education and training. The report, “The Indispensable Institution – Reimagining Community College,” outlines the important role of community colleges can play in helping individuals adapt to the changes in the economy and upskill themselves in order to get back to work. Americans at all education levels will need to develop new skills and build on existing ones as they adjust to changes due to the greater use of technology in their workplaces or re-enter the workforce because of the COVID-19-driven shock to the labor market and economy. In early December, Tamar Jacoby, president of Opportunity America, discussed how community colleges can live up to their promise of workforce education with Partnership Senior Vice President of Workforce Development Peter Beard during an UpSkill Works forum. Jacoby highlighted the need for many community colleges to improve the workforce outcomes of their students by building better bridges between the credit division and the non-credit division of schools. This approach could help keep students looking for a job in the short-term from retaking courses or relearning skills if they want to return for a degree later in life. It can also help students who seek a bachelor’s degree prepare to enter the workforce. Jacoby also illuminated ways in which some community colleges could improve their offerings and programs, and with them, workforce outcomes, for non-credit students. Employers and educators need to build meaningful partnerships with deep engagement. The non-credit divisions of community colleges can be nimbler and more responsive to the labor market and employer needs because the programs are designed with specific workforce outcomes in mind. Jacoby shared that the “secret sauce” is labor alignment, and programs cannot be aligned with employer needs without employer engagement. “You can’t do job-focused education without the people who know the jobs. That is like a manufacturer creating a machine part without knowing […] the specs for the rest of the machine,” Jacoby said. Employers and educators share responsibility for effectively communicating with each other since both sides speak in different languages, come from different cultures and have different senses of time, she said. This year, the Texas Senate Higher Education Committee took on the charge of examining existing innovative programs that assist non-traditional students in completing a degree or credential and considering methods the state could use to partner with higher education institutions to expand successful programs. The development of San Jacinto College’s LyondellBasell Center for Petrochemical, Engineering, and Technology Center, which opened in the fall of 2019, is one example of a Houston-area community college designing a program with significant input and guidance from employers to meet industry workforce needs and standards. Employers need to explain their needs to faculty but also to guidance and career counselors. Jacoby encouraged employers to lend employees to educational institutions to serve as counselors to help students navigate to a job or career path to pursue. Employers also need to be honest with colleges about the on-the-job performance of their graduates. “When the graduates they hire have the skills, the colleges need to know. But when the graduates don't have skills, the colleges really need to know,” she said. Ultimately, job placements, rather than enrollments, should be the primary metric for success, she said. She acknowledged the importance of community colleges in preparing students to transfer and earn bachelor’s degrees, but urged the schools to make sure those students, too, graduate with workplace skills including business communication, business math and some familiarity with the labor market and their career interests. Measuring success in terms of job placements would encourage community colleges to improve how they prepare students to navigate careers, she said. But what of today’s workforce and individuals displaced by the pandemic? Jacoby warned that individuals who entered the workforce five or 10 or 20 years ago may have as little knowledge of the current labor market or what they’re aiming for than a traditional student. Displaced adults need help in these areas, too, and don’t find it at many community colleges. Jacoby believes the less time a displaced worker stays out of the workforce (and the less time skills have to become stale), the better. The United States has not been particularly good at training displaced workers, she said, citing the lack of career navigation supports and meaningful partnerships between employers and training providers. Employers who anticipate layoffs can perform skills assessments for employees so they know how these skills could map to a different job or what type of training the employee needs to change jobs. During an UpSkill Works forum in November, guest Matthew Daniel, principal consultant with Guild Education, shared ways employers could structure education programs to support upskilling to achieve better educational and skills development outcomes. “All jobs are going to change,” Jacoby said. “Name a job. It’s different than it was six, nine months ago and it’s going to be different in another nine months.”   Related: Higher Education Gains from its Role in the UpSkill Houston Collaboration The UpSkill Houston initiative's UpSkill Works forum series engages business and community leaders, policy makers and leading thinkers on the key workforce issues our region and nation confront. View all past UpSkill Works Forums.
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