Texas Tech could get funds to become Tier One University - KCBD NewsChannel 11 Lubbock

3/11/09

Texas Tech could get funds to become Tier One University

LUBBOCK, TX. (KCBD) - Texas Tech University could soon be another step closer to becoming a Tier One University. Senators Robert Duncan and Florence Shapiro of Plano filed legislation they hope will strengthen emerging research universities in Texas. Texas Tech already has the reputation as a research school, but it hasn't actually achieved National Research status - which is often labeled "Tier One." this bill though, would help, but Tech will have to fight to get these funds.

"National Research University really means that you are spending 100 million or more on research on a yearly basis, and our last year where it was recorded we spent 58 million," said Texas Tech Chancellor Kent Hance, "what Senator Duncan is doing, and with his bill, he's saying, look if you do certain things you will get additional money."

That money would come from the National Research University fund, which Senate Bill 1560 and Senate Joint Resolution 35 would establish if passed.  The Higher Education Fund, which right now has nearly 500 million dollars, would finance the effort.

To qualify for funds the University must spend at least 45 million dollars on research. Tech spent nearly 60 million last year. Possess a total endowment of at least $500 million. Tech currently has about 420 million. Also satisfy rigorous academic standards.

Chancellor Hance says if you compare the schools, Texas Tech is by far number one. "We're the only one that has a Phi Beta Kappa Chapter, we're the only one that has an ARL Rating for our library. That's a research library established. If you look at the amount of money raised from our development we had 123 million last year, Houston was number two with only 39 million. And so I think it's pretty obvious we're the school, but it's a big state and we don't have very many state representatives from this area, so we have to fight very hard because we're going up against Dallas, Houston, and San Antonio schools," adds Hance.

Hance says Texas Tech research benefits more than just the Lubbock economy. "We're doing the most research of anyone around on Pulse Power which is a method to set off IEDs before the troops get to them. That is great research."

Hance adds in the next three to four years, they hope to double the amount of money Tech spends on research.

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