Texas Tech University

Summer and Fall Bring Changes to Texas Tech University

Amanda Castro-Crist

August 27, 2018

Here are some of the things you might have missed.

Texas Tech ranked in top 3 percent of universities in the world

Texas Tech University ranked in the top 3 percent of the 18,000 institutions evaluated in the 2018-19 Center for World University Rankings list. Texas Tech jumped 63 spots, from No. 500 in 2017 to No. 437 this year. The university also is ranked No. 126 among universities in the U.S., No. 75 among U.S. public institutions, No. 363 in citations, No. 416 in quality publications, No. 423 in research output and No. 448 in alumni employment. Read more.

Texas Tech among top 10 in Texas in Money Magazine rankings

In Money Magazine's rankings of Best Colleges in America, Texas Tech proved to be not only one of the top 10 schools in the state, but top among Big 12 Conference peers and also in the U.S., coming in at No. 242, up from 271 in 2017. Read more.

Texas Tech recognized as one of the top online disability-friendly institutions

Texas Tech continues its tradition of serving all students by being ranked the No. 5 best online college for students with disabilities, up from No. 7 in 2017, and the No. 9 most affordable college for students with disabilities in the nation, according to SR Education Group. Out of a possible score of 100, Texas Tech scored 84.29. Read more.

Texas Tech ranked in top 10 percent for international students

Texas Tech is in the top 10 percent of the 1,800 schools ranked by U.S. News & World Report in its new Top Universities for International Students rankings. The university is one of nine Texas schools and among seven from the Big 12 Conference that landed in the top 10 percent. U.S. News & World Report integrated three primary new criteria into the information the publication generally uses for college and university rankings: graduation and retention rates for international students, availability of English as a Second Language (ESL) programs and grant aid available to international students. Read more.

New vice president for Diversity, Equity & Inclusion announced

Carol A. Sumner, former senior associate dean of students at Arizona State University (ASU), began serving as vice president of the Division of Diversity, Equity & Inclusion on June 18. At ASU, she served in various roles, including as the university lead for Culture@ASU and the University International Student Service Committee. Read more.

Texas Tech welcomes National Academy of Sciences member to faculty

National Academy of Sciences member Luis Rafael Herrera-Estrella begins this fall as the newest faculty member in the Department of Plant and Soil Science, housed within the College of Agricultural Sciences & Natural Resources. Known and respected worldwide for his work in cotton genomics, Herrera-Estrella's arrival at Texas Tech was made possible by a $5 million grant from the State of Texas Governor's University Research Initiative (GURI) – matched by the university – that aims to bring the best and brightest researchers to Texas. Read more.

School of Music names new director

The Texas Tech School of Music, part of the J.T. & Margaret Talkington College of Visual & Performing Arts, named bassoonist Kim Walker, former dean and principal of the Sydney Conservatorium of Music, as its new director. She brings 30 years of international performance experience as a soloist, chamber musician and recording artist with more than 30 solo and chamber music recordings. She began in the role on July 1. Read more.

College of Human Sciences names new hospitality and retail management chair

Robert Paul Jones, former assistant professor of marketing, associate director for the Center for Retail Enterprises and associate member of the graduate faculty at the University of Texas at Tyler, brings more than 30 years of industry and higher education experience in retail and hospitality to Texas Tech as the new chair of the Department of Hospitality and Retail Management. He began in the role on July 1. Read more.

Kinesiology offers new degree options for students

After working for more than two years to achieve all the necessary approvals, the Department of Kinesiology & Sport Management opens a doctoral program in exercise physiology this fall. Also starting this fall are two dual-degree programs: a collaboration between the department and the Texas Tech School of Law lets students simultaneously earn a master's degree in sport management and a juris doctorate over the course of three years, and an informal agreement with the Jerry S. Rawls College of Business allows students to simultaneously earn a master's degree in sport management and a master of business administration. Read more.

Texas Tech President Stresses Internationalization Opportunities on Trip to China

President Lawrence Schovanec – along with Vice President for Research Joseph A. Heppert; Hong Zhang, a professor of plant molecular biology and plant biotechnology in the Department of Biological Sciences; and Grace Hernandez, chief of staff and associate vice president for administration – spent eight days this summer traveling through China to tour nine universities, meet with their top administrators and sign agreements for cooperative efforts between Texas Tech and their institutions.

Schovanec was one of two university presidents – and the only one from the Western Hemisphere – invited to speak in front of thousands of academics at the grand opening of Sichuan University's summer University Immersion Program. The two-week summer program is designed to convene professors from around the world to give short courses and lectures to undergraduate students and offer them an international experience. The program features 187 world-class universities from 26 countries. Read more.

TTU K-12 partners with Chinese academy of sciences on dual-diploma program

TTU K-12, a unit of Texas Tech's eLearning & Academic Partnerships, has signed an agreement with the Chinese Academy of Sciences to offer Chinese high school students the chance to earn their Chinese and American diplomas simultaneously. The dual-diploma option gives Chinese students the opportunity to become eligible for the ACT and/or SAT and attend American colleges and universities. Read more.

New dining options debut across campus

Hospitality Services has added various dining options on campus.

  • A new, full-service Chick-fil-A opened at the east end of the Student Union Building (SUB). The new location will operate from 7 a.m. to 10 p.m. Monday-Friday and 9 a.m. to 2 pm. on Saturday. Read more.
  • The second floor of The Commons @ Talkington Hall is now All-You-Care-To-Eat and features a rotating menu.
  • The Union Plaza in the SUB now features homegrown barbeque at Raider Pit BBQ.

Construction completed on 19th Street

The outer rim of the Texas Tech campus got some major upgrades along 19th Street, thanks to a collaborative project between the university, the Texas Department of Transportation (TxDOT) and the city of Lubbock. The project added a 10-foot-wide shared-use path for bicyclists and joggers that is more than a mile long, running from 19th Street and University Avenue to the Texas Tech University System Building at Texas Tech Parkway and Marsha Sharp Freeway. Read more.

Texas Tech Chess Program hosts NATO Chess Championship

In June, Texas Tech hosted 76 chess players from 10 countries participating in the 29th Annual NATO Chess Championship. This is the first time the invitation-only tournament has been held in the United States and only the second time it has been held in the Western Hemisphere, after the 2014 tournament in Canada. Poland took home the gold medal, while Germany scored a close second, followed by Greece in third. The U.S. team, which included Texas Tech alumnus Chase Watters, placed fourth. Read more.

Twirlers take second place and 25 additional awards at nationals

The Texas Tech University Twirlers returned with two team and 24 individual awards after competing at the America's Youth on Parade National Baton Twirling Championships, held July 24-28 at the University of Notre Dame in South Bend, Indiana. The team took second place in the National Collegiate Halftime Twirl Show team competition and eighth place in the National Collegiate Dance Twirl team competition. This is the eighth year the twirling team has competed at the national championships. The team won 19 awards in 2017 and back-to-back national titles in 2014 and 2015. Read more.