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Hobby Center for the Study of Texas
Rice University
PO Box 1892
MS 202
Houston, TX 77251-1892
Phone: 713-348-4208
e-mail: hobbycenter@rice.edu 

News

School Vouchers, Rising in Many GOP States, Founder in Texas

From the Austin American Statesman: Texas is one of just seven states with Republican-controlled Legislatures and governorships that have stonewalled private school choice — and many others are small and rural, such as North Dakota and Wyoming. 

Harris County Drops to No. 2 Nationally in Population Growth, According to Census Data

From the Houston Chronicle: Harris County is still having substantial growth and the state is still booming," said Steve Murdock, a former Census Bureau director who heads the Hobby Center for the Study of Texas at Rice University. "I don't think this is any indication of a long-term pattern of decline for Houston. When gas and oil comes back, we will see that kind of development come back."  

Looking to the Future, Rice Experts Worry About Education, Opportunity

From the Houston Chronicle: Murdock was Texas' first state demographer and a Bush-appointed former U.S. Census Bureau director who for more than 40 years tried to educate everyone from lawmakers to business people about the state's rapidly changing population and the implications for our future. But his take was always a bit more sober, his audiences across the state sometimes a bit less friendly.  

Texas Demographer Has Given the Same Speech for 25 Years. Is Anyone Listening?

From the Texas Observer: For nearly three decades, demographer Steve Murdock has been delivering a message — a warning, really — to Texas legislators.

Kerrville Poised for Growth: Speakers at First Economic Summit Put Focus on Area’s Future

From the Kerrville Daily Times: Kerrville is “poised for growth,” according to experts who eyed the local economic landscape for the benefit of a sold-out crowd of more than 200 local business men and women attending the inaugural Hill Country Economic Summit. Gathering Feb. 16 at the Mount Wesley Conference Center, attendees heard from national economist M. Ray Perryman, as well as former chief state demographer Steve Murdock and Peterson Health President/CEO, Pat Murray. Also providing updates on their agencies were Charlie McIlvain, executive director of the Kerrville Convention and Visitors Bureau; Brian O’Connor, CEO of the Kerrville Economic Development Corporation; and Walt Koenig, CEO of the Kerrville Area Chamber of Commerce, which hosted the event.

Sociology’s Steve Murdock to Deliver Feb. 21 Scientia Lecture

From Rice University News and Media: In an age where privacy seems increasingly under attack by digital technology, the U.S. Census Bureau track record and commitment to data privacy have never been more important, said Rice sociologist Steve Murdock, a former director of the bureau who will address the topic at the next Scientia Lecture at 4 p.m. Feb. 21 in Duncan Hall’s McMurtry Auditorium.

430,000 New Texans in One Year

From Denton Record-Chronicle: Over the last year, Texas added 432,957 residents, pushing the state’s population to almost 28 million.

How Canadian Schools Succeed in Nudging Indigenous Students Through College

From The Atlantic:A similar shift is well under way in the United States, where the number of college-age Hispanics will more than double by 2060, according to projections by the Hobby Center for the Study of Texas at Rice University, while the supply of college-age whites declines. The number of African Americans will increase 42 percent by then, the Census Bureau says.

Lack of Hispanics in College Could Hurt Your Paycheck

From U.S. News & World Report: ...the number of college-age Hispanics will more than double nationwide by 2060, according to projections by the Hobby Center for the Study of Texas at Rice University. The number of Hispanics of all ages will more than double, the Census Bureau estimates, while the number of whites will decline by 6 percent.

Democrats' Best Shot in Texas is Party-switching Judge

From San Antonio Express News: After two decades of statewide election losses, Democrats seem unlikely to end Texas Republicans' longest-in-the nation winning streak come November. The only real threat looks to be incumbent Court of Criminal Appeals Judge Lawrence Meyers, who switched parties to become a Democrat in 2013 and now faces a tough re-election race.

Texas Lawmakers Explore Paring Back Free Tuition for Veterans' Kids

From the Fort Worth Star-Telegram: In 2015, the program [Hazlewood] cost Texas universities a combined $178 million, according to the state comptroller's office. But what that number will look like three years from now is a matter of debate. In 2015, the Legislative Budget Board predicted that it would cost $380 million by 2019. A report by Rice University's Hobby Center for the Study of Texas commissioned by the Texas Veterans Commission, however, suggested that the number may be much lower.

Texas College Officials Want State to Pay Veterans' Tuition

From the Houston Chronicle: Texas university officials urged the state to either absorb millions of dollars in higher education benefits for veterans and their dependents or limit who can access the funds.

Census Data Shows Rising Young Latino Workforce, Whether Texas is Ready or Not

From The Dallas Morning News: Texas' demographic face is changing rapidly, census data released this week shows, raising questions about whether institutions and policies are keeping pace. 

Fall in Oil Prices Does Little to Slow Houston's Population Growth

From the Houston Chronicle: The Houston area added more people last year than any metropolitan region in the country, continuing its exceptional growth of the last decade and a half, according to new U.S. Census Bureau data released Thursday.