Today@Sam Article

SHSU Earns ‘High Research Activity’ Designation

Feb. 1, 2022
SHSU Media Contact: Emily Binetti

2022_SHSU_Provost_R2_x600B-scaledSam Houston State University has been designated a Doctoral University of High Research Activity by The Carnegie Classification of Institutions of Higher Education.

Often referred to as “R2” status, the classification places SHSU among a select group of institutions in the country. Institutions achieve this status based on the number of doctoral degrees awarded, number of funded research positions at the university, and external grant funding to SHSU during the past three years, relative to other universities in the U.S.

“Our new “R2” status is a result of the work of our outstanding community of scholars. Sam Houston State is making unprecedented investments in faculty and facilities to support our academic goals and the needs of the state of Texas, and they are paying off,” said President Alisa White.

At SHSU, more than half of the enrolled students are first-generation college students and approximately 75 percent of students work part-time or full-time to reduce the financial burdens of attending college. Thanks to grant funding, many students are paid to engage in scholarly work with a faculty mentor on campus, rather than having to seek outside employment. In fact, during the last three years, externally funded grants provided approximately $1.5 million for student wages in the form of assistantships, that would not have existed otherwise.

“SHSU is ranked No. 1 in Texas in advancing social mobility by U.S. News & World Report and is now designated a university with high research activity. Earning these two accomplishments for the same year speaks volumes about the heart of this institution and our faculty members’ continued dedication to their professions and, more importantly, to our students’ success,” Michael T. Stephenson, provost and senior vice president for Academic Affairs, said.

In addition to paid positions, students benefit directly and indirectly from expanded grant funding in a variety of ways – inside and outside of the classroom. For example, the growth of external funding has provided resources for state-of-the-art equipment and programs that have become essential for effectively training and preparing students for successful careers in the 21st century.

As a continuation of these efforts, the Center for Enhancing Undergraduate Research Experiences and Creative Activities (EURECA), housed within the SHSU Office for Research & Sponsored Programs, connects students to faculty-mentored projects and other research or creative opportunities specific to students’ areas of studies. The center plans to expand its services to students as SHSU faculty and staff continue to grow the grant portfolio of the university.

SHSU is one of only two universities that currently hold this research status within the Texas State University System (TSUS). To learn more about The Carnegie Classification of Institutions of Higher Education, visit

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