Texas Tech University

At the Regional Sites

Nellis Renews McLennan Partnership in Waco

by Kelly Podzemny

President M. Duane Nellis visited Waco recently to renew Texas Tech University's partnership with McLennan Community College there. McLennan President Johnette McKown joined him at a signing ceremony on August 31 held in the lobby of the Michaelis Academic Center on McLennan's campus.

The signing of the Memorandum of Understanding renewed the agreement first made in 2009 that established the Texas Tech University Higher Education Teaching Site at Waco (TTU at Waco). Students, faculty and Waco-area alumni were in attendance to watch the signing and meet President Nellis.

The TTU at Waco regional site is part of McLennan's University Center program. Students complete core curriculum and prerequisites through McLennan and transfer to Texas Tech to finish upper-level coursework on McLennan's campus and online.

"We started with eight students in the fall 2010 semester and have steadily increased the number of classes offered and the number of students that have enrolled," Director of TTU at Waco Lewis Snell said. "We are fortunate to have great support from McLennan and from the community."

TTU at Waco has experienced a growth spurt this semester with enrollment on track to exceed 100 students for the first time, a 51 percent increase compared to fall 2014. The growth is attributed to increased awareness of the options available through the University Center program.

Snell also expects to see TTU at Waco's 100th graduate walk the stage in the upcoming fall commencement and possibly the first graduate of its Bachelor of Science in Biology degree.

"We feel like we're serving Waco and providing a unique educational opportunity for students in McLennan County," Snell said. "As enrollment continues to grow, we expect to offer additional degree options."

TTU at Waco is one of five regional sites that extend Texas Tech's reach across the state. Bachelor of Science in Biology, Bachelor of General Studies, and Bachelor of Arts/Science in University Studies degrees are offered, and the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board recently approved the Bachelor of Applied Arts & Science degree for delivery in Waco.