May 2, 2013
Even though Texas Tech University was not where Maggie Jones envisioned herself four years ago, now she cannot imagine her life anywhere else.
“It’s heartbreaking for me to leave,” she said of her upcoming graduation. “I lived on campus for three years; I recruit and travel for the school as part of President’s Select. Texas Tech has been my life for the last four years.”
Jones, who graduates Saturday from the Honors College and the College of Agricultural Sciences and Natural Resources (CASNR), has been very active on campus throughout her undergraduate years, which have been steadily preparing her for a career in veterinary medicine.
“I applied to a lot of schools my senior year of high school, and my brother was a student at Texas Tech,” she said. “When I visited him and took a tour, the people here made me want to come. They took me on a tour of the facilities and made me feel like they wanted me.”
Jones said Michael San Francisco, who is currently interim vice president for research, convinced her that Texas Tech’s Honors College would be ideal for her interests.
When she came to Texas Tech from her hometown of Albuquerque, N.M., Jones became involved in Kappa Alpha Theta sorority and President’s Select, worked in undergraduate research for the natural resources management department and interned for Senator Martin Heinrich in Washington, D.C.
Jones had a unique interest in veterinary medicine, especially compared to her peers
in CASNR: she wanted to work with exotic animals and wildlife, and she had never been
on a farm or seen a pig in real life.
In the fall of 2012, Jones spent the semester interning with the New England Aquarium with its marine mammal and sea animal rescue facility outside of Boston, working with rescued sea turtles.
During her internship, Jones received hands-on experience ensuring injured and ill sea turtles regained proper strength for their return to the wild. She said the facility had a record-breaking year, helping more than 250 sea turtles during her time there, each of which would have died without assistance.
“Rescue and rehabilitation as a veterinarian is what I want to do, and I got that out of the internship,” Jones said.
She says that despite initially wanting to attend a smaller school, Texas Tech provided opportunities she couldn’t have received elsewhere.
“I definitely got that small-school environment in the Honors College and the College
of Agriculture; I have professors that really care about me,” she said. “But I also
got something that I didn’t know I wanted, and now I know I couldn’t live without:
the atmosphere of a huge university, with the football games, traditions and culture
that comes with the Red Raider family.”
Jones will attend Colorado State Veterinary School in the fall, a dream of hers since she was 15 years old. She is looking forward to taking a trip to the Galápagos Islands this summer with her mother.
But first, Jones must leave Texas Tech and the family she’s grown to love.
“The professors I had my freshman year, whom I’ve had no professional interaction with since, still email me and see how I’m doing,” Jones said. “The Honors College had a convention in Boston when I was there and the people there took me out to dinner. Even across the country Texas Tech was there for me.”
3:00 p.m.: Arts & Sciences, Wind Energy
7:00 p.m.: Graduate School
9:00 a.m.: Agricultural Sciences & Natural Resources, Rawls College of Business, Media and Communication, Honors College, Office of the Provost (BA University Studies and BS University Studies)
1:30 p.m.: Architecture, Education, Whitacre College of Engineering, Human Sciences, Visual & Performing Arts
6:00 p.m.: Law School