Higher Ground: To the collaborators on the New Hope anti-poverty project--among them Dr. Aletha Huston, professor of human development and family sciences in the School of Human Ecology at The University of Texas at Austin--welfare reform was more than just a challenge. It was an opportunity. Things were changing. States and cities were experimenting. If it was inevitable that some places would make bad decisions about how to help (or not help) the poor, it was also inevitable that some places would improve on the old system.