Honoring our legacy, envisioning our future

President Neal Smatresk talks about UNT's New College at Frisco to open this spring with members of the Frisco Rotary Club in November. (Photo by Ahna Hubnnik)As 2015 draws to a close, close, we at UNT are giving thanks for the people who've shaped our institution throughout our 125-year history -- from our students, faculty and staff to our alumni and other supporters.

Our transformation has been extraordinary. We started as a teacher training school with 70 students and a mission to lead the way in education. Today, we are the nation's 25th largest university with more than 37,000 students and a vision to rise to the top. For 125 years and counting, we've created leaders who make a difference in the world.

Our students and alumni have made us who we are today. As you'll read in this issue, their impact looms large in fields like cybersecurity and others.

As we're honoring our legacy this year, we're also envisioning our future. We've set our sights on becoming a nationally prominent university. To achieve this goal, we're leveraging our talent and resources in new ways. This fall, we launched four Institutes of Research Excellence that capitalize on our research strengths and provide a better pipeline for technology transfer and industry partnerships.

We're also expanding our reach by opening the University of North Texas New College at Frisco, an off-site instructional facility, with a soft launch in January. It will be a hub of collaborative, interdisciplinary classes and programs, built to suit business and industry needs by giving students and working professionals the business, communication and technology skills they need to thrive. You can read more about the New College.

These ventures bring new opportunities and expand our horizons. The possibilities are endless and will help us define the next 125 years of greatness for UNT.

Have a happy, safe holiday season and a wonderful new year. Be sure to check out our holiday video at northtexan.unt.edu/online or at youtube.com/universitynorthtexas. You'll see UNT come to life in a whole new way.

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