Texas Tech University

Centennial Celebration Highlights Texas Tech's Legacy of Service

Glenys Young

August 25, 2022

Arbor Day

A variety of special service-based events will be hosted throughout the year.

Service has been part of the fabric of Texas Tech University since its earliest days. 

Texas Technological College opened its doors on Oct. 1, 1925, but the first two residence halls weren't built until 1934. In response to a plea from President Paul W. Horn, many local residents opened their homes to students, supporting the fledgling college's growth.


In 1937, President Bradford Knapp instituted the Arbor Day commemoration to beautify the young campus. On its first occurrence, 20,000 trees were planted, and 85 years later, Texas Tech students and faculty enjoy the tradition of giving back every April.

During World War II, the college welcomed the wives of military members stationed at Lubbock Army Air Field, teaching them life skills like home nursing, gardening, canning and how to manage their rations.

The message is clear: service has always been part of who we are at Texas Tech. And today, as we launch our centennial celebration, service to our many communities is still at the forefront of our identity. 

To demonstrate that, Texas Tech has set an ambitious goal to complete 1 million hours of volunteerism and service during the celebration – and to make it even more fun, we're making it competitive. Individuals who participate in any service or volunteer activity can log their hours here, and Texas Tech will recognize winners in the following categories:

  • Most hours completed by at Texas Tech student organization
  • Most hours completed by a Texas Tech Alumni Association chapter
  • Most hours by a graduating class
  • Most hours by graduating classes per decade (1970s, 1980s, 1990s, 2000s, etc.)

Many of the events scheduled during the centennial celebration will have a service component. View the full list of centennial events here.