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Celebrating Town, Gown, and Maverick Pride

Located along the southern edge of Downtown Arlington, The University of Texas at Arlington is the district’s most visible and powerful economic driver. Every day, UTA students, faculty and staff bring energy, innovation, dollars, and pride into Downtown. Many UTA alumni have stayed to pursue career goals and open businesses after graduation. Public-private collaborations have driven game-changing developments, like the UTA College Park District and UTA Center for Entrepreneurship and Economic Innovation.

Dr. Jennifer Cowley
Dr. Jennifer Cowley, UT Arlington President

On September 30, 2022, a new leadership era formally begins at UTA. At an investiture ceremony in the College Park Center, the University of Texas at Arlington will formally confer the authority and symbols of its presidency to Dr. Jennifer Cowley.

An Arlington native, Dr. Cowley has dedicated her career to education and public service. Before joining UT Arlington, she was the Provost and Vice President for academic affairs at the University of North Texas. Prior to that, she worked at The Ohio State University for 16 years, serving as Professor and Vice Provost for capital planning and regional campuses, Associate Dean of the College of Engineering, and head of city and regional planning. She also has a strong background in city government.

“With her incredible expertise in public affairs, policy and planning,” said Maggie Campbell, President and CEO of Downtown Arlington, “Dr. Cowley is not only a tremendously capable thought leader but a knowledgeable advocate for people-building through place-building.”

On the occasion of her investiture, Downtown Arlington asked Dr. Cowley to share her thoughts on the long-standing relationship between the University and Downtown Arlington and what she sees for the future.

Downtown Arlington: Why is the relationship between Downtown, UTA, and the City of Arlington so important?

Dr. Cowley: When students choose to attend UTA, they’re also choosing to live, learn or spend time in the Downtown Arlington community. They want to see and explore opportunities for culture, livability, employment, recreation, dining and growth. Thriving downtowns attract businesses that can offer students employment and internship opportunities. A healthy, supportive and complementary partnership between the City, Downtown, and UTA is so important—our collective growth and success are interdependent.

Downtown Arlington: As you begin your tenure, what do you see as your first priorities for UTA and Downtown?

Dr. Cowley: One of my priorities is to strengthen the relationships we have with our downtown stakeholders and alumni, and to continue to invest in the growth that is helping UTA drive economic development in our area. For example, our enrollment increases have led to the development of nine private student apartment developments, increasing both the local tax base and the number of downtown residents and consumers.

Downtown Arlington: How can we work together to accelerate the research and entrepreneurial energy found at UTA?

Dr. Cowley: We’ve invested more than $535 million in capital construction projects in the last decade, with two active building projects that total more than $220 million. We should continue exploring opportunities to bring research and industry together to solve problems facing our region and take advantage of other opportunities to further drive entrepreneurship and economic development.

Downtown Arlington: What do you see for the future of UTA and Downtown Arlington?

Dr. Cowley: Ultimately, I’d like to see an even stronger physical connection between downtown, the entertainment district and the UTA campus, where the lines and divisions become blurred, and it feels like a seamless connection

What is an Investiture?

Steeped in tradition and protocol, an investiture is a formal ceremony conferring the official power of the office upon a new university president. At UTA, the investiture and its associated events celebrate all that the University has achieved in its history and the accomplishments to come under President Cowley’s leadership. Click here to learn more and to RSVP.

About The University of Texas at Arlington

Founded in 1895, The University of Texas at Arlington is a Tier One public research institution. As the largest university in North Texas and second largest in The University of Texas System, UTA offers state-of-the-art facilities that encourage its 60,000+ students to be critical thinkers. Through academic, internship, and research programs, UTA students receive real-world experiences that help them contribute to their community and the world.

About Downtown Arlington

Designated by the State of Texas as the Arlington Cultural District, Downtown Arlington is where creativity, authenticity, and hometown pride thrive and drive what's next. Within its less than a two-mile radius, Downtown is home to The University of Texas at Arlington as well as prolific visual and performing artists and arts institutions, live entertainment, exciting NCAA and professional athletics, one-of-a-kind dining and retail, and a supportive business climate. Stay in the know by subscribing to our e-newsletter and by following us on Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, and Instagram.

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