According to a report in Forbes, Elon Musk is gearing up to create a university in Austin, according to tax filings obtained by Bloomberg that revealed the educational institution is seeded with a $100 million gift from the world’s richest person.
“The organization plans to launch a STEM-focused primary and secondary school with an initial class of 50 prior to the university, which will be “dedicated to education at the highest levels” and will seek accreditation from the Georgia-based Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges, according to the filing, which requested tax-exempt status,” Forbes reported.
This is a blockbuster announcement. Musk has criticized the quality of the college graduates he has sought to employ, and now he wants his own brand of higher education, possibly to compensate for the low caliber of discourse on another of his brands--X--formerly called Twitter.
But how will Musk build another university in Austin? It would be very expensive, as well as enormously controversial. That is why I believe the former site of the never-built supercollider in Waxahachie, Texas, would be ideal for a high-tech university.
The site is only 30 miles from Dallas and 166 miles from Austin, and that part of the state could really use a university besides Baylor in Waco.
In fact, Musk could even get his Boring company to build an underground rail connection between Waxahachie and Dallas, possibly even including Austin with a stop in Waco. The Waxahachie site already has extensive tunneling. They could bore rail tunnel out there all day and hardly disturb even a jackrabbit. Much better than boring tunnels in the Los Angeles earthquake zone, which seems like asking for it.
Musk would have to have a football team to give him yet another platform for controversy, and the team could play Texas A&M annually in an Aggies versus Muskies shootout. The trophy could be a tinfoil hat. The mascot might be a spaceman, or an X.
There are still-unresolved questions, such as whether Musk U. would offer degrees in X Studies, or hire faculty who espouse totalitarian government or align with MAGAdytes on everything Trump. But those details can be worked out later, like after the 2024 presidential election or Trump’s first felony conviction.
PR firms, be on the lookout here for an RFP to promote the new university. And be sure you own a Tesla Cybertruck by then. You will need one for those trips to Waxahachie. And remember: no off-roading. The poor things are used to a lab environment and cannot really handle the great outdoors, especially snow.
Bill Huey is president of Strategic Communications and the author of Advertising's Double Helix: A Proposed New Process Model. Journal of Advertising Research, May/June 1999. His article about advertising effects has been cited in books and academic papers around the world.