June 27, 2016
Not even five years ago, I laid out a vision for our community of achieving 10 Goals in 10 Years that would transform our community’s healthcare and economy. Building a medical school at the University of Texas was top on that list.
On Sunday, we celebrated the opening of the Dell Medical School at The University of Texas at Austin and the phenomenal students in the inaugural class.
This is a big moment for the students, of course. But it’s also a big moment for all of us that live in Travis County and love our home. The visionary taxpayers of Travis County made this possible. At the Sunday event, I said that our people are thoughtful and optimistic about their needs, goals and desires, including those of their neighbors. They are empathetic. And they have been bold.
I congratulated the students. I told them that each and all of them are the personification of the people’s needs, goals and desires coming true. I said they are the animators of our dreams and hopes.
The students hold historic positions in this new school by being the inaugural class. But I explained that we’re counting on them to make history by a commitment to defining a new, fully realized future.
So, no pressure at all.
I encouraged them to wrap themselves in the honor and the responsibility they have because, as I said, it’s so stinking unique. I told them to soak it in and carry it from now until the ends of their careers. I hope they make the honor and responsibility a part of who they are and of their life experiences.
Next year, we’ll celebrate the opening of Dell Seton Medical Center at The University of Texas, a new 21st century teaching hospital located right next door to the medical school. This new safety net hospital will replace a badly declining asset and is being built with no tax dollars. Uniquely Austin community health clinics are already opening and providing folks much-needed care. And we’ve broadened the behavioral health offerings with our first-ever psychiatric emergency department, a short-term crisis care facility and other important improvements in our behavioral health safety net.
We’re five years into the 10 Goals in 10 Years. The promises are being kept.