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The University of Texas at Austin, informally UT Austin, UT, University of Texas, or Texas in sports contexts, is a public research university and the flagship institution of The University of Texas System. Founded in 1883 as "The University of Texas," its campus is located in Austin—approximately 1 mile (1,600 m) from the Texas State Capitol. The institution has the fifth-largest single-campus enrollment in the nation, with over 50,000 undergraduate and graduate students and over 24,000 faculty and staff. The university has been labeled one of the "Public Ivies," a publicly funded university considered as providing a quality of education comparable to those of the Ivy League.
UT Austin was inducted into the American Association of Universities in 1929, becoming only the third university in the American South to be elected. It is a major center for academic research, with research expenditures exceeding $550 million for the 2013–2014 school year. The university houses seven museums and seventeen libraries, including the Lyndon Baines Johnson Library and Museum and the Blanton Museum of Art, and operates various auxiliary research facilities, such as the J. J. Pickle Research Campus and the McDonald Observatory. Among university faculty are recipients of the Nobel Prize, Pulitzer Prize, the Wolf Prize, the Emmy Award, and the National Medal of Science, as well as many other awards.
UT Austin student athletes compete as the Texas Longhorns and are members of the Big 12 Conference. Its Longhorn Network is unique in that it is the only sports network featuring the college sports of a single university. The Longhorns have won four NCAA Division I National Football Championships, six NCAA Division I National Baseball Championships and has claimed more titles in men's and women's sports than any other school in the Big 12 since the league was founded in 1996. Current and former UT Austin athletes have won 130 Olympic medals, including 14 in Beijing in 2008 and 13 in London in 2012. The university was recognized by Sports Illustrated as "America's Best Sports College" in 2002.
- UT System
The campus is currently home to fourteen residence halls, the newest of which opened for residence in Spring 2007. On-campus housing can hold more than 7,100 students. Jester Center is the largest residence hall with its capacity of 2,945. Academic enrollment exceeds the on-campus housing capacity; as a result, most students must live in private residence halls, housing cooperatives, apartments, or with Greek organizations and other off-campus residences. The Division of Housing and Food Service, which already has the largest market share of 7,000 of the estimated 27,000 beds in the campus area, plans to expand to 9,000 beds in the near future.
The university recognizes more than 1,000 student organizations. In addition, it supports three official student governance organizations that represent student interests to faculty, administrators, and the Texas Legislature. Student Government, established in 1902, is the oldest governance organization and represents student interests in general. The Senate of College Councils represents students in academic affairs and coordinates the college councils, and the Graduate Student Assembly represents graduate student interests. The University Unions Student Events Center serves as the hub for student activities on campus. The Friar Society serves as the oldest honor society at the university. The Livestrong Texas 4000 for Cancer student organization is the longest annual charity bicycle ride in the world and has raised over $4 million for cancer research from its founding in 2004 to August, 2013.