As President of the University of Houston Renu Khator has charisma and a keen sense of numbers.
She counts progress like total number of beds in campus dormitories.
“8,008 beds. Yes, I count every last one.”
Or how much does UH research royalties bring in compared to other colleges.
“Number 14th among all public universities in the nation.”
Those royalties are worth more than 16 million dollars this year.
But there are other numbers where Khator says UH needs to do better.
“Our graduation rates are still below state and national averages and we cannot hide behind excuses until we reach at least those averages.”
The national graduation rate is 55 percent at public universities. For Texas it’s lower — 49 percent. It’s even lower at UH.
Take students who started in 2006. Only 46 percent finished in six years.
Khator says two new programs will try to lift those numbers.
There will be special focus on seniors who drop out and also on transfer students.
True to style, she has numbers for the program.
“Under this program students will obtain their degree in 33 percent less time, with 20 percent less effort and at 20 percent less cost than the typical student graduating today.”
Khator says it’s worth it for students. If they graduate faster, they can make more money.