December 12, 2013
M. Duane Nellis was inaugurated Wednesday (Dec. 11) as the 16th president of Texas Tech University.
In addition to Chancellor Kent Hance, members of the Board of Regents and Texas Tech faculty and staff, the president of the Association of Public and Land-Grant Universities (APLU) M. Peter McPherson was in attendance.
The ceremony featured an academic processional with members of the Texas Tech faculty donned in their regalia. Many faculty members served as delegates of institutions of higher learning, processing in the order of the institution’s founding. Interim provost Lawrence Schovanec presided over the ceremony and Danny Reible, the Donovan Maddox Distinguished Engineering Chair served as the Mace Bearer. Clint Barrick, KTTZ’s station manager and director of programming was the announcer.
Board of Regents Chairman Mickey Long, Chancellor Kent Hance, Faculty Senate President Aliza Wong, Staff Senate President Christine Self and Student Body President Luke Cotton each make remarks during the ceremony.
McPherson gave the keynote address.
“We are here to celebrate a new wonderful president in Duane Nellis and also to dedicate a new public purpose in the university,” McPherson said. “This institution has achieved enormously, and there is momentum to achieve so much more. It is important for the country, for the public, that you do so.”
McPherson, who has known Nellis for many years, said Nellis is capable, competitive, committed to the goals of the institution and drives to get things done. He also mentioned that he was particularly impressed with Texas Tech’s recent announcement of ten faculty Fulbright awards, and praised Texas Tech’s focus on outreach problem-solving and commercialization of research.
“This sets a standard and an expectation for the university,” McPherson said.
In his inaugural address, Nellis spoke about his vision for Texas Tech as a top research university and reflected on the school’s West Texas setting.
“As we know, at Texas Tech, from here it is possible, and as president, and with this firm foundation, I am committed to a new beginning; working with our outstanding faculty, staff, students, alumni and friends to move Texas Tech to higher levels of national excellence—be more AAU like, indeed to be at the highest level based on the Carnegie Foundation Classification of Research Universities,” he said.
Nellis laid out five key themes that Texas Tech, like other research universities, should strive for: innovation, interdisciplinary research, student and community engagement, globalization and diversity.
“I am excited about our future, proud to be your new president, and ask each of you here today, who are part of the Texas Tech University family, to join with me as we work passionately, energetically and strategically to continue the progress of recent years of this great university, as we capture the promise of tomorrow that will collectively elevate Tech to new levels of national and indeed international visibility,” Nellis said.
The Office of the President is the home of M. Duane Nellis, the 16th president of Texas Tech University. Nellis was named March 22, 2013 and began his term June 2013.
President Nellis has been committed to enhancing Texas Tech Universitys presence as a top tier national public research university through efforts that promote even greater levels of student success, academic quality and reputation, research and creative activities, and outreach dimensions.