Lawrence Schovanec is touting the values of Texas Tech in an effort to encourage West Texas high school students to enroll in their hometown university.
Part of Texas Tech University's efforts to become a global university have centered around attracting the best and brightest students from throughout the world.
Texas Tech officials, however, are making sure that effort is in conjunction with ensuring the most deserving local students find a place with their hometown academic institution as well. To that effort, new Texas Tech president Lawrence Schovanec is visiting all the local high schools and many others from across West Texas with a message to explore what Texas Tech can do for them.
Schovanec, along with the Office of Admissions and representatives of all colleges at Texas Tech, has just completed a series of Top Scholar recruitment visits to Dallas, Houston and San Antonio. Red Raider Roadshows are scheduled for these and other larger markets in the spring. But Schovanec wanted to be sure that a special message was conveyed to local students.
"We wanted to take Texas Tech to this population of West Texans, encourage their pursuit of a college degree and emphasize the opportunities Texas Tech has to offer," Schovanec said.
The tour began at the first of November with trips to Levelland, Shallowater and Lubbock Cooper high schools. He also visited Coronado and Frenship high schools as well as the Talkington School for Young Women Leaders.
At each school, Schovanec has shared the wonderful educational opportunities of a national research university that sits in their own backyard as well as the education students can receive and the benefits of a college degree.
Earlier this year, Texas Tech achieved Tier One status from the Carnegie Classification of Institutions of Higher Education, one of 115 universities listed in the Highest Research Activity Category and one of 81 public institutions in the top tier. Texas Tech also continues to set enrollment records, reaching more than 36,500 students this fall. Texas Tech also reached a record for Hispanic enrollment, which accounts for just more than 24 percent of the university's student body and puts the university closer to becoming a Hispanic Serving Institution, a highly esteemed recognition through the U.S. Department of Education.
Schovanec's tour is an effort to increase the 15 percent of the student body that calls West Texas home. Through the tour, Schovanec is determined to ensure local high school students know that he recognizes the importance of keeping students in West Texas.
"I personally wanted to convey to these students that they don't have to travel far to access a world class education, and that staying near home doesn't diminish the excitement and opportunities of the college experience," Schovanec said. "But also, we value the quality and character these West Texas students bring to Texas Tech and the positive impact they have on the culture of Texas Tech and other students from around the state, nation and the world."
The tour continues on Thursday (Nov. 17) with visits to Estacado, Monterey and Lubbock high schools. It will continue next month with visits to Sweetwater and Snyder high schools on Dec. 8, Plainview, Amarillo and Canyon Randall high schools on Dec. 9 and Midland Trinity, Midland and Odessa Permian high schools on Dec. 12.