UIL holds 2010 competition on our campus and the Thompson Conference Center
On May 29 - 31, 2010, Memorial Day weekend, The University of Texas at Austin hosted the University Interscholastic League (UIL) music competition. According to the UIL Web site, the music program is designed “to support and enrich the teaching of music as an integral component of the public school curriculum in the state of Texas.” Each year approximately 500,000 middle school, junior high and high school students reap the benefits of participation in ten UIL music contest events, including vocal performance, choir, orchestra, ensemble, marching band and solo instrument performance.
Almost 35,000 students, teachers, judges, and family members were on our campus Memorial Day weekend to take part in the competitions or to cheer on their loved ones. The Thompson Conference Center, a component of Continuing & Innovative Education (CIE), hosted many of the contests that weekend, but CIE’s connection to UIL doesn’t end with hosting events. In 1910, CIE established UIL, then called the Debating League of Texas High Schools. The League held its first competition in 1911 and was rechristened the University Interscholastic League in 1914, after merging with the Interscholastic Athletic Association to give commendations to athletic competitors.
UIL grew to include educational contests in other high school academic subjects such as mathematics, journalism, literary criticism, drama, and computer applications. Different plans and requirements were also established for middle school and junior high levels. The program is so successful that it is estimated that one of every two high school seniors has participated in a UIL event prior to graduation.
Next year, UIL celebrates its own 100th Anniversary. May Continuing & Innovative Education be the first to wish them a “Happy Anniversary!”