Texas Tech University

Strategic Plan

Mission Statement (Top of Page)

The Center for Biotechnology & Genomics promotes and facilitates faculty and student research in biochemistry, molecular biology, cell biology, and molecular genetics. The Center provides technical support for research and a nucleus for interdisciplinary research and training initiatives at Texas Tech University and the Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center.

Vision Statement

The Center for Biotechnology & Genomics will spearhead research and educational programs in cell and molecular biosciences by leading research initiatives to increase the competitiveness of researchers at Texas Tech University in this critical area.

Center for Biotechnology & Genomics will:

  • Initiate and coordinate research initiatives in biotechnology and genomics.
  • Be a technical resource for biotechnology and genomics researchers at TTU and across the region.
  • Be recognized as an outstanding educational facility for training in biotechnology and genomics.
  • Prepare students to work in modern research facilities.

Center for Biotechnology & Genomics is committed to the values of:

  • Pursuit of excellence
  • Academic and intellectual freedom
  • Creativity and innovation
  • Diversity
  • Cooperation and communication
  • Accountability

Goals, Critical Success Factors, and Objectives (including Strategies and Assessments)

GOAL 1. Access and Diversity: (TOP)

The Center will assist faculty to recruit, retain, and graduate a larger, more academically prepared, and diverse graduate and undergraduate student body for training in Biotechnology & Genomics-related fields.

Critical Success Factors:

  • Increased research opportunities for undergraduate, graduate and post-graduate students.
  • Interdepartmental graduate training programs in specific areas of biotechnology and genomics.
  • Infrastructure upgrades to ensure that student researchers have access to modern research facilities and equipment.
  • Increased recruitment of graduate students from non-traditional areas.

Objectives:

Objective 1.1

Provide undergraduate, graduate and post-graduate students with increased research opportunities in biotechnology and genomics.

Strategies: (TOP)
  • Establish Biotechnology & Genomics research initiatives to provide students with outstanding research projects in supported programs.
  • Promote cooperative research projects by seeking out funding opportunities, establishing faculty teams and coordinating proposal preparation.
Assessments:
  • Successful establishment of one or more extramurally funded cooperative research programs in biotechnology and genomics, with $2,000,000 of annual extramural funding as the minimum goal.
  • Center-led teams submit two or more cooperative research and/or training grants per year.
Objective 1.2

Develop new interdepartmental graduate training programs in biotechnology and genomics that promote cooperative research and provide a basis for interdisciplinary research programs.

Strategies: (TOP)
  • Continue to develop the Master's degree program in Biotechnology that admitted its first class in 2001.
  • Develop a Ph.D. level training program in Integrated Plant Biotechnology.
  • Continue to develop a joint M.S./J.D. with the Texas Tech School of Law.
  • Recruit students into these programs.
  • Support these programs through extramural funding and industrial contributions.
Assessments:
  • Document the successful establishment of these graduate programs by recruitment of an effective cadre of students.
  • Evaluate the number and quality of applicants.
  • Track student success during their training and as they move into the biotechnology industry.
  • Extramural support for graduate training programs and research.
Objective 1.3

Provide faculty and students with necessary technical resources to do state-of-the art research and increase capabilities of core instrumentation resources by procuring new equipment and upgrading of existing facilities.

Strategies: (TOP)
  • Work with the university administration to find resources to continually improve and update core equipment facilities.
  • Seek extramural funding for the procurement of major equipment items, particularly those suited for use by several research groups.
  • Continue to provide excellent technical services through hiring and training of dedicated technical personnel.
Assessments:
  • Expansion of core instrumentation facilities to meet the research needs of faculty.
  • Extramural support for equipment purchases.
  • Competitiveness of center members in obtaining extramural research funding.
Objective 1.4

Recruit graduate students from non-traditional areas and under-represented groups.

Strategies: (TOP)
  • Cooperate with academic departments, the Texas Tech Honors College, the Howard Hughes Medical Research Institute, the Robert A. Welch Foundation, and the Clark Scholars Program to recruit talented graduate students.
  • Emphasize technical training that is applicable to a wide range of rewarding scientific careers not only in traditional areas such as academics and medicine but in computer sciences, environmental science, and legal professions.
Assessments:
  • Document graduate’s career development.
  • Track progress in student recruiting and diversity.

GOAL 2. Academic Excellence.

Attain national recognition for excellence in research and teaching in biotechnology and genomics.

Critical Success Factors:

  • Establish competitive research initiatives in molecular biology, biotechnology, and genomics appropriate for a nationally recognized research university.
  • Optimize core facilities and make our technical assistance available to the widest possible group of users.
  • Provide focused graduate programs in biotechnology and genomics.
  • Increase the number of research faculty in this area to build on our research strengths.
  • Build strong ties with researchers throughout Texas Tech University system and throughout the Southwest.

Objectives:

Objective 2.1

Establish biotechnology and genomics research as a major area of research strength at Texas Tech University..

Strategies: (TOP)
  • Increase recognition for the achievements of the Center for Biotechnology & Genomics and its members.
  • Identify core research groups to develop interdisciplinary projects.
  • Promote Biotechnology & Genomics projects for earmarked support from Federal and State-run programs.
  • Leverage university resources to increase competitiveness in obtaining extramural support.
Assessments:
  • Research expenditures directly attributable to the Center’s facilities and activities.
  • Extramural funding for interdisciplinary research teams.
  • Document success in attracting earmarked funding.
Objective 2.2

Optimize our technical capabilities and make them available to possible users.

Strategies: (TOP)
  • Continually update and renew our equipment and technical capabilities to meet the ever-increasing demand for technical support.
  • Obtain the necessary financial support from both internal and external sources.
  • Maintain up-to-date website descriptions of core facility technical services.
Assessments:
  • Expanded technical capabilities necessary to remain competitive.
  • Extramural support for equipment.
  • Grant support to center members.
Objective 2.3

Develop focused graduate programs in biotechnology and genomics.

Strategies: (TOP)
  • Recruit the highly qualified and motivated graduate students and post-doctoral associates required by competitive research programs.
  • Define focused research training programs to increase recruiting effectiveness by enhancing our strengths.
Assessments:
  • Document the establishment of focused research programs.
  • Track student recruitment, progress and success.
Objective 2.4

Increase the number of faculty in this area to build on our research strengths.

Strategies: (TOP)
  • Promote the hiring of new faculty in Biotechnology & Genomics research areas.
  • Establish endowed research positions in Biotechnology & Genomics research areas.
  • Work with life science departments in faculty recruitment and retention.
  • Provide faculty with critical technical resources to overcome some limitations in faculty startup funds and make faculty more competitive for extramural and intramural funding.
Assessments:
  • Number of research faculty in Biotechnology & Genomics.
  • Number of endowed research positions.
  • Increased technical resources to faculty research needs.

GOAL 3. Engagement.

The Center for Biotechnology & Genomics will provide technical resources to the West Texas community to build community and regional connections that enhance the quality of education and life.

Critical Success Factors:

  • Provide graduates that are highly qualified for technical positions in industry.
  • Provide technical assistance and educational assistance to schools, research institutions, and local business

Objectives:

Objective 3.1

Strengthen ties with public institutions in the state and region.

Strategies: (TOP)
  • Support the outreach efforts of the Howard Hughes Medical Institute program.
  • Promote interactions with science teachers at public and private schools.
Assessments:
  • Document the establishment of seminar programs, symposia, cooperative research projects and grant proposals to support science curriculum development and teacher training.
Objective 3.2

Increase the availability of technical resources to the West Texas community.

Strategies: (TOP)
  • Provide consulting and technical resources to both established and startup companies located in the region and with multinational companies with commercial interest in our area.
  • Supply technically skilled workers for biotechnology enterprises in the region through graduate training programs.
  • Expand center core facilities in order to provide Texas Tech researchers with the tools they need to compete for industrial research contracts.
  • Provide expertise in a wide range of technical areas and perform molecular analyses on a contract or for fee basis to companies involved in biotechnology or other DNA-based products or services.
  • Provide opportunities for companies to invest in Texas Tech University by providing surplus equipment and other resources.
Assessments:
  • Private sector support through research contracts, student internships, and equipment gifts, and in-kind contributions.

GOAL 4. Technology.

The primary function of the Center for Biotechnology & Genomics is to provide researchers in the areas of molecular biology and biochemistry with access to critical research technologies.

Critical Success Factors:

  • Expand capabilities of established centers for DNA and protein purification and sequencing.
  • Obtain equipment for the production and analysis of DNA chips, real-time genetic analyses, protein fingerprinting analysis, and bioinformatics resources necessary for genomics and proteomics research.
  • Demonstrate return for University investment in these areas.

Objectives:

Objective 4.1

Increase effectiveness of center core facilities.

Strategies: (TOP)
  • Consolidate existing core facilities into one centralized lab in the new Experimental Sciences Building.
  • Assist the Development Office to raise funds to provide state-of-the art equipment.
  • Promote better coordination between personnel to provide better service.
Assessments:
  • Establishment of consolidated core laboratories.
  • Funding to equip new ESB
Objective 4.2

Provide for effective for long-term upgrades in center capabilities to keep pace with the needs of researchers.

Strategies: (TOP)
  • Work with Texas Tech University, the Health Sciences Center and public and private institutions to provide a continuous source of funding for equipment additions and upgrades necessary to enhance the research competitiveness of our faculty and students.
  • Seize every opportunity to submit proposals for federal funding for laboratory renovations and equipment procurement.
Assessments:
  • Maintaining the technical resources needed for Texas Tech Researchers to be full participants in building the genomic and proteomic revolution will be a continuing challenge that will require constant effort.

GOAL 5. Partnerships.

Build collaborative relationships that generate increased research expenditures or other direct benefit to the university.

Critical Success Factors:

  • The Center currently provides strong ties between researchers on the General Academic Campus and the Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center.
  • Strengthen our ties with the USDA Plant Stress Laboratory, the Texas Agricultural Experiment Station, and other public institutions in the state and in our region.
  • Increased cooperation in consortium programs and interdisciplinary research projects.

Objectives:

Objective 5.1

Increase scientific communication between researchers at all area research institutions.

Strategies: (TOP)
  • Partner with researchers at regional institutions to submit joint proposals to federal and state funding agencies.
  • Establish joint seminar programs, symposia, and encourage service on student advisory committees
  • Work to break down administrative and physical barriers such as parking to promote easy access by research partners to the Texas Tech.
Assessments:
  • Participation of faculty in inter-institutional research and teaching efforts.
  • Competitive grants and contracts awarded as a result of partnerships.
Objective 5.2

Promote cooperative research between Texas Tech faculty and scientists at the TTUHSC, the USDA Plant Stress Lab, the Texas Agricultural Research Center, and other regional institutions.

Strategies: (TOP)
  • Coordinate interdisciplinary research and training projects and grant proposals.
  • Assist with the negotiation of specific cooperative agreements with the USDA Plant Stress Laboratory.
  • Participate in planning and administration of cooperative, state-funded research initiatives such as TxCOT and TxGRAIN.
Assessments:
  • Document the role of the Center in coordinating research and training initiatives.
  • Research agreements with, and grants from state and federal initiatives.

GOAL 6. Human Resources and Infrastructure.

The Center for Biotechnology & Genomics will enhance the quality of the work experience for center employees and provide the necessary resources for center activities and services.

Critical Success Factors:

  • Provide necessary laboratory space in the new Experimental Life Sciences Building.
  • Provide employees with the necessary tools to do their jobs efficiently.
  • Provide technical support personnel with secretarial and bookkeeping assistance for billing.
  • Maintain service contracts on equipment.

Objectives:

Objective 6.1

Establish center facilities in the new Experimental Life Sciences Building.

Strategies: (TOP)
  • Participate in building planning and design.
  • Assist Development Office with efforts to equip the new building.
  • Justify university investment.
Assessments:
  • Establishment of lab in ESLB.
  • Equipment resources.
Objective 6.2

Provide employees with the necessary tools to do their jobs.

Strategies: (TOP)
  • Ensure that the technical staff are not burdened with unnecessary paperwork.
  • Provide training opportunities to remain at the cutting edge of molecular and genomic research technology.
Assessments:
  • Monitor employee satisfaction and job performance.
Objective 6.3

Ensure that equipment is properly maintained and available for use.

Strategies: (TOP)
  • Ensure that service contracts are maintained.
Assessments:
  • Monitor equipment use and availability.

GOAL 7. Tradition and Pride.

The Center will play a critical role in the establishment and maintenance of a tradition of innovative research in the molecular biosciences at Texas Tech University. Pride in our accomplishments, in our colleagues, and our institution will naturally follow.

Critical Success Factors:

  • Make the Center a focal point for research in molecular biosciences.
  • Provide researchers with quality facilities and technical expertise to expand their research horizons.

Objectives:

Objective 7.1

Make Texas Tech University the best place to be for research in Biotechnology & Genomics and let people know about it.

Strategies: (TOP)
  • Maintain open communications with membership to monitor accomplishments.
  • Build teamwork through project development, seminars and symposia.
  • Promote Texas Tech University to our scientific colleagues.
Assessments:
  • New research programs.
  • Increased research expenditures.
  • Student recruitment.

GOAL 8. Financial Stability.

Center members will submit a sufficient number of new proposals each year to maximize the probability of new funding. The Center will achieve the research goals contained in its funded proposals so that the chances for continued funding will be high. The Center will maintain optimal enrollment in its graduate programs, providing a steady flow of formula funding and student fees. The Center will increase the efficiency of its core facilities so that user fees will cover an increased portion of operating costs.

Critical Success Factors:

  • Successful new grant proposals.
  • Grant renewals.
  • Enrollment in new existing and graduate programs.
  • Increased efficiency of core facility.

Objectives:

Objective 8.1

Financial stability for the center will be achieved by developing competitive proposal for extramural funding to support research and education programs.

Strategies: (TOP)
  • Take every reasonable opportunity to submit proposals for funding.
  • Develop research teams to compete for funding for collaborative research programs.
Assessments:
  • Number of proposal submitted.
  • Number of projects funded
Objective 8.2

Participants in Center research and education projects will accomplish the goals of the project to optimize chances for renewal.

Strategies: (TOP)
  • Establish benchmarks for projects to ensure all research objectives are met.
  • Reporting requirements for project participants to assure good progress.
  • Coordination of renewal process.
Assessments:
  • Document that project benchmarks are met.
  • Number of projects renewed.
Objective 8.3

Stable enrollment in the existing M.S. program in Biotechnology and new graduate programs will be maintained at a level sufficient to provide reliable formula funding.

Strategies: (TOP)
  • Maintain high quality training programs.
  • Recruit excellent students.
  • Initiate new graduate programs in “hot” areas.
Assessments:
  • Number and quality of applicants.
  • Number and quality of students in program.
  • Graduate semester hours generated.
  • Formula funding generated.
Objective 8.4

Increase efficiency of core facilities by increasing the percentage of core facility operating costs recovered by user fees.

Strategies: (TOP)
  • Decrease costs by bulk purchasing of supplies where possible.
  • Increase user fees only if absolutely necessary.
Assessments:
  • Better balance of core facility income and costs.

GOAL 9. Accountability.

The Center will establish a series of benchmarks for its externally funded research programs, its graduate education programs, its community outreach programs and its Core facilities.

Critical Success Factors:

  • Measurement of progress against established Benchmarks.
  • Assess stakeholder satisfaction with graduate programs and core facilities.

Objectives:

Objective 9.1

Intramural assessment of progress through benchmark goals.

Strategies: (TOP)
  • Establish benchmarks for research projects, graduate programs and core facility service.
  • Annual measurement of performance against these benchmarks by the Vice President for Research.
Assessments:
  • Benchmark goals.
  • Assessment plan.
Objective 9.2

Survey students, internship providers and employers of Center graduate program, and core facility users to measure stakeholder satisfaction.

Strategies: (TOP)
  • Develop survey instrument and administer survey.
  • Assess survey results and make necessary program changes.
Assessments:
  • Adequate number of responses to survey.
  • Improvements in service and stakeholder satisfaction.