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University News Service press releases

Identifier: 12.3002

Scope and Contents

Materials in this collection consist of official press or news releases created by the University News Service, to publicize and communicate University-related information with the public spanning from 1967 September to 2002. The press releases promote University events, describe campus updates, and highlight various University-related accomplishments. Various media outlets received press releases covering topics such as university sports, student and faculty accolades, sorority and fraternity activities, campus growth, beauty pageants and contests, and guest speakers, lectures, and workshops. Cutlines or captions for photographs relating to topics covered accompany some press releases and may or may not include a copy of the photo itself. Also included in this collection are “Hometowner” data sheets of feature students, and other supplemental material (pamphlets, programs, agenda, speeches, and travel itinerary) relating to the activities described in the press releases. There also are news logs which are lists with the title, assigned number, and date of the press release. Press releases from 2000 onward can be found on the university’s website.

Many of the press releases are type written some with multiple drafts attached with hand written edits and notes. “Media Directional Sheets” attached to each press release state the author and typist of the release, and the date sent from the News Service. The directional sheet also lists all the news outlets and mediums that received the release. University News Service Director, Pat Murdock, approved the majority of the press releases. Each release varies in length from about one paragraph to three or more pages. Arranged by date of press release. Press releases that do not have dates are arranged by the mail date listed on the Media Directional Sheet.

Events of note documented by press releases include:
• Snowball Fight Announcement – January 1968
• Miss Air Commando Contest – April 1968
• Men’s Gymnasium Fire – January 23–31, 1969
• LBJ Surprise Visit – January 23–31, 1969
• Library Moves from Flowers – July 16–29, 1969
• Agriculture Building Fire – October 13-16, 1969
• 1970 San Marcos Flood – May 6–19, 1970
• Kissing Marathon Announcement – October 17–31, 1970
• LBJ Visit for Dedication – November 1–10, 1972
• Class 1934 Honored at Homecoming – November 18–30, 1984
• Summerfest ’86 Announcement – June 26–July 15, 1986
• Willie Nelson Concert – October 14-24, 1987
• Kappa Sigma Fraternity Suspension for Hazing – November 11-30, 1987


  • 1967-2002


Conditions Governing Access

Open to researchers without restriction.

Conditions Governing Use

Copyright held by Texas State University. Educational reproduction is allowed without permission. Authorization to publish must be obtained from the Special Collections and Archives.

Archives and Records Request Form

Historical note - Texas State University

Texas State University was established by the 26th Legislature in 1899 as the Southwest Texas State Normal School; 313 pupils were enrolled in 1903-04, the first year classes were held. The school name changed to Southwest Texas State Normal College in 1918, to Southwest Texas State Teachers College in 1925, to Southwest Texas State College in 1959, to Southwest Texas State University in 1969, to Texas State University-San Marcos in 2003, and to Texas State University in 2013.

Historical note - University News Service

The University News Service at Texas State University was established in the early 1940s to communicate information about the University to the public and to promote the achievements of its faculty, staff, and students. The predecessor to the University News Service, the Department of Public Services, was established in 1939 under Director Patrick Henry (Pat) Norwood. At that time, the University was focused on teacher education and was named Southwest Texas State Teachers College. Although the Department of Public Services was responsible for communicating with the public, it initially directed its attention to the education and employment of teachers. The Department’s Placement Bureau worked to place graduates of the College in teaching positions and its Extension Division offered courses to off-campus students through direct instruction and correspondence courses.

The News Service was formally established as a unit within the Department of Public Services at least by 1943. Beyond representing the College to the public, it was also responsible for producing college publications, including the student-run newspaper, The College Star. Journalism students also assisted the News Service working as reporters and photographers. They helped create press releases for publication in local newspapers and radio broadcasts that occasionally aired on local radio stations. The News Service maintained a long-term relationship with the Department of Journalism and its students. In 1961, Bruce Roche, an instructor in the Department of Journalism, was appointed Director of the College News Service. Pat Norwood served as the Director of the Department of Public Services until his promotion to the Director of the Administrator’s Intern Program in 1965. At that time, the Department of Public Services was disbanded and the Office of Placement and Extension Services was created to aid in student education and employment. The College News Service and other general services were placed under the direction of the Vice President for College Affairs (later the Vice President for University Affairs).

The University News Service saw its greatest development under the direction of Patricia (Pat) Murdock. Murdock served as Director of the University News Service from 1970 through 1993. In that time, she grew the department from herself, a shared secretary, and a half-time sports information director to a staff of seven full-time employees. Additionally, it was during her tenure that advisement of The University Star (formerly The College Star) was transferred to the Department of Journalism. Although the News Service continued to employ students, its focus became communicating with the public, creating University publications, and publicizing the University and its events. During this time, the News Service was also known as the News and Information Service.

Since 1980, the News Service has been organized under the office of the Vice President of University Advancement and its predecessors, the offices of the Vice President for Institutional Advancement and Vice President of Student and Institutional Relations. Additionally, although the office has officially gone through at least two name changes since 1994, including the Office of Media Relations and Publications and the Office of Media Relations, the title University News Service continues to be used by the office especially in press releases.

Sources: Undergraduate Catalogs, Faculty Handbooks, Staff Handbooks, University News Service morgue files, Pedagogs


36.83 Linear Feet (34 record cartons)

Language of Materials



Official press or news releases created by the University News Service at Texas State University, to publicize and communicate University-related information with the public.

Physical Location

Materials may be stored off-site. Advance notice may be required for use.

Immediate Source of Acquisition

Transferred circa 2007.


Addtional materials added by Nicole Critchley, 2020 September.

Existence and Location of Originals

Press releases can be found on the University Newsroom at:

Related Materials

Related materials include University News Service radio scripts, the student newspaper, and student yearbook. University News Service radio scripts (12.300.NewsService.RadioScripts) for KCNY radio station in San Marcos often covered the same topics as the press releases. The University Archives also holds back issues of the student-run newspaper, The University Star, and its predecessors, The College Star and The Normal Star. Early issues of the paper have been digitized and are available through the University Archives web site. Issues of the University’s yearbook, Pedagog, may also contain related information and are fully digitized online as well.

Processing Information

Original finding aid by Sonya Prado, 2018 October. Updated and materials added by Nicole Critchley, 2020 September

University News Service press releases
Sonya Prado
2018 October
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description

Revision Statements

  • 2020 September: Revised, Nicole Critchley

Repository Details

Part of the Special Collections and Archives Repository

Alkek Library Room 580
601 University Drive
San Marcos Texas 78666 USA