Texas A&M System’s RELLIS Campus Will Be Central Testing Hub for the Army Futures Command

The Texas A&M University System News Release
COLLEGE STATION, Texas — The Texas A&M University System Board of Regents on Thursday authorized the construction of a $130 million combat development complex at the A&M System’s RELLIS Campus in Bryan.

The complex will include a one-of-a-kind, kilometer-long tunnel that will make Texas A&M Engineering “the hypersonics research capital of the country,” said M. Katherine Banks, Vice Chancellor and Dean of Engineering.

At the RELLIS Campus, Gen. John “Mike” Murray, commanding General for the Army Futures Command, said the Army Futures Command would develop, test and evaluate next-generation technologies from the private sector and universities around the country.

The Texas A&M System will build a $50 million building with laboratories, accelerator space and offices for the Army Futures Command on the RELLIS campus, plus invest another $30 million in infrastructure improvements to support the new facility.

The Texas Legislature also appropriated $50 million to establish an innovative proving ground, which the Texas A&M Engineering Experiment Station (TEES) will implement as an outdoor testing area at RELLIS for designing, analyzing and validating new technologies in challenging environments. Gov. Greg Abbott, Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick and Speaker Dennis Bonnen championed the $50 million to be included in the state appropriations bill for the proving ground.

“This innovative new complex strengthens Texas’ partnership with the United States Military and further establishes our state as a hub for emerging technology,” said Governor Abbott. “I am proud to have worked with the Lieutenant Governor, the Speaker, and the Legislature to secure funding to move this project forward. The state of Texas will continue to work with the Texas A&M System and the Army Futures Command to modernize our defense and keep our Armed Forces at the forefront of technological advancement.”

The Army Futures Command, headquartered in Austin, is drawing on research from universities around the country and the private sector to modernize the U.S. Army, but the new facility at RELLIS will be the central hub where the newest and most innovative ideas are tested and evaluated – often by soldiers from nearby Fort Hood or members of the Texas A&M Corps of Cadets.

The aim is to shorten the time it takes to get emerging technologies from the lab to the field and maximize technology capabilities through soldier feedback. A team of Army and Texas A&M System researchers will quickly evaluate prototypes that can be tested by soldiers in a real-world environment using a vast array of sensors and instruments at RELLIS.

“We are humbled and grateful to the people of Texas, Texas elected leaders, and the Texas A&M University System for the opportunity to further develop our strategic partnership through the establishment of the combat development complex on the RELLIS Campus,” said Gen. Murray. “This effort will certainly prove vital as we work together to discover, develop, and test ideas and concepts that will help our Soldiers, and our future Soldiers, to protect America’s tomorrows — beginning today.”

Not only is the RELLIS Campus close enough to the Army Futures Command headquarters and Fort Hood for ideal oversight, it is also near Texas A&M University’s world-class College of Engineering and Disaster City, the world’s largest search and rescue training facility that can double as a training site for urban warfare.

Although the combat development complex isn’t expected to be completed until June 2021, Vice Chancellor Banks said the hiring of additional engineers will begin immediately.

Three years ago, RELLIS didn’t even exist.

In May 2016, Chancellor John Sharp announced the creation of RELLIS – named for Texas A&M’s core values of Respect, Excellence, Leadership, Loyalty, Integrity and Selfless Service. He began the building boom to redevelop the 2,000-acre property with an initial investment of $300 million. Today the campus is home to the Texas A&M System’s transportation and engineering agencies as well as an education complex served by Blinn College and Texas A&M System universities from around the state.

More growth is coming, and more construction is planned, including a state-of-the-art data center.

The arrival of the Army Futures Command will bring the RELLIS site full circle, back to the location’s June 6, 1943 opening as the Bryan Army Air Field. It also takes RELLIS to another level as companies interested in working with the Army Futures Command are expected to locate on or near the campus.

“We consider serving the military of our nation to be the highest of honors and responsibility,” said Chancellor Sharp. “Also, having the Army Futures Command at RELLIS is a game-changer for that campus and the Brazos Valley area; RELLIS was envisioned as a research dynamo and the Army’s arrival will speed that up.”

MEDIA PACKAGE: Photos, video and map may be downloaded at https://afc.tamus.edu

ATTACHMENT: Remarks to the Board of Regents by Dr. M. Katherine Banks

TAMUS BOR Meeting Remarks Dr. Banks

About The Texas A&M University System
The Texas A&M University System is one of the largest systems of higher education in the nation, with a budget of $6.3 billion. Through a statewide network of 11 universities, a comprehensive health science center, eight state agencies, and the RELLIS Campus, the Texas A&M System educates more than 153,000 students and makes more than 22 million additional educational contacts through service and outreach programs each year. System-wide, research and development expenditures exceeded $996 million in FY 2017 and helped drive the state’s economy.

Contact: Laylan Copelin
Vice Chancellor of Marketing and Communications
(979) 458-6425
(512) 289-2782 cell
lcopelin@tamus.edu

 

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Texas A&M University System regents name James Hurley sole finalist for president of Tarleton State University

The Texas A&M University System News Release

COLLEGE STATION, Texas — Following a nationwide search, The Texas A&M University System Board of Regents today named Dr. James Hurley as sole finalist to be the 16th president of Tarleton State University.

Hurley comes to Tarleton from Tusculum University in Greeneville, Tennessee, where he has served as president since 2017. Tusculum is the oldest university in the state, celebrating 225 years of education.

Hurley begins his duties as president Sept. 1. As required by law, the board may take final action on the hiring after the 21-day notice is given.

“We had several excellent candidates, but at the end of the day Dr. Hurley stood head and shoulders above the rest,” said Elaine Mendoza, chairman of the A&M System Board of Regents. “We are extremely confident in his ability and excited by his enthusiasm to become part of Tarleton’s rich legacy.”

Throughout his 23 years in education, Hurley has served as instructor, professor, dean, vice president and president with extensive higher education experience. Under his leadership at Tusculum, the school converted from college to university status and added the College of Health Sciences, the Niswonger College of Optometry, and the College of Science, Technology and Math.

He also led the development of the university health center, creating one of the largest clinical partnership opportunities in the nation. Prior to Tusculum, he was chief operating officer and executive vice president at Lincoln Memorial University in Harrogate, Tennessee.

“Dr. Hurley possesses the executive leadership and innovative spirit needed to continue Tarleton’s trajectory as the premier student-focused university in Texas and beyond,” said A&M System Regent Bill Mahomes, who chaired the search committee. “His outstanding track record has led to enrollment growth, faculty excellence, new degree programs and financial stability in the institutions he has served. I am confident he will continue John Tarleton’s dream of providing accessible, affordable higher education. His demonstrated ability to connect with students, faculty, staff and the community is invaluable to Tarleton’s mission.”

As Tarleton’s chief executive officer, Hurley will supervise 1,400 employees, manage a $185 million annual budget and provide vision for a comprehensive curriculum to serve more than 13,000 students at Stephenville, Fort Worth, Waco, Midlothian, The RELLIS Academic Alliance in Bryan and online.

“I would like to thank the Board of Regents and Chancellor Sharp for naming me sole finalist for the position of President at Tarleton State University,” Hurley said. “I am honored and humbled to be joining an incredible institution with an outstanding legacy of academic excellence and a steeped tradition of student success. Kindall and I enthusiastically look forward to meeting with students, faculty, staff and community members during the next step of the process. Tarleton State University has a bright future and we cannot wait to join Texan Nation!”

Hurley is a first-generation college student. He holds a doctorate in educational leadership and finance from Morehead State University, a master’s degree in education from Indiana University, and a bachelor’s degree in business education and management from the University of Pikeville in Pikeville, Kentucky, where he served as president and president-elect from 2011 to 2015.

He completed the Institute for Presidential Leadership at Harvard University and received a certificate of higher education management from Vanderbilt University and a Rank 1 Certification in educational supervision from the University of Kentucky.

He and his wife, Kindall, are proud parents of Drew and Carter, and daughters Blayklee and Brooklyn.

He will replace Dr. F. Dominic Dottavio, who is stepping down Aug. 31 after 11 years of service.

Following a short sabbatical, Dottavio will be a faculty member in Tarleton’s College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences, where he has had an appointment as a tenured professor since coming to the university. He also will assist the Division of Institutional Advancement.

Tarleton, a founding member of The Texas A&M University System, provides a student-focused, value-driven education marked by academic innovation and a dedication to transform today’s scholars into tomorrow’s leaders. It offers degree programs to more than 13,000 students at Stephenville, Fort Worth, Waco, Midlothian, RELLIS Academic Alliance in Bryan, and online, emphasizing real-world learning experiences that address societal needs while maintaining its core values of tradition, integrity, civility, excellence, leadership and service.

About The Texas A&M University System
The Texas A&M University System is one of the largest systems of higher education in the nation, with a budget of $6.3 billion. Through a statewide network of 11 universities, a comprehensive health science center, eight state agencies, and the RELLIS Campus, the Texas A&M System educates more than 153,000 students and makes more than 22 million additional educational contacts through service and outreach programs each year. System-wide, research and development expenditures exceeded $996 million in FY 2017 and helped drive the state’s economy.

Contact: Laylan Copelin
Vice Chancellor of Marketing and Communications
(979) 458-6425
(512) 289-2782 cell
lcopelin@tamus.edu

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Texas A&M University System Regents Approve Phase II of RELLIS Academic Complex Construction

The Texas A&M University System News Release

COLLEGE STATION, Texas — The Texas A&M University System Board of Regents on Thursday approved the construction of the second phase of the RELLIS Academic Complex.

Approval includes the second Texas A&M System academic building on the 2,000 acre RELLIS Campus in Bryan, Texas. Construction of the $25 million building is set to begin in September, with an expected completion date of November 2020.

“The completion of the second phase of Texas A&M System academic buildings at RELLIS will strengthen the programs currently offered and open the door for exciting and innovative new opportunities,” said John Sharp, Chancellor of the Texas A&M University System. “I look forward to seeing the RELLIS Campus grow and continue to serve the surrounding Brazos Valley region and beyond.”

The 45,000 square-foot-building will include classrooms and laboratories incorporating state-of-the-art teaching and technology, as well as faculty offices and spaces for student collaboration. Most notably, the building will provide the needed space for engineering labs and classrooms to facilitate the upcoming academic engineering program offered by Tarleton State University at RELLIS.

The A&M System is set to open the first academic building in this complex in late August. The nearly 69,000 square-foot-building includes classrooms, biology labs, faculty offices, study areas and student services offices. The first upper-division students at RELLIS will begin using the three-story building this fall.

Announced in May 2016, the RELLIS Campus serves as an ecosystem to foster cutting-edge research, technology development, higher education and workforce training and is home to the Academic Complex, as well as multiple new transportation and engineering research and laboratory facilities. Upon completion of phase two, the Academic Complex is expected to accommodate 2,500 students.

For more information about the RELLIS Academic Alliance visit https://rellis.tamus.edu/academicalliance/.

About The Texas A&M University System
The Texas A&M University System is one of the largest systems of higher education in the nation, with a budget of $6.3 billion. Through a statewide network of 11 universities, a comprehensive health science center, eight state agencies, and the RELLIS Campus, the Texas A&M System educates more than 153,000 students and makes more than 22 million additional educational contacts through service and outreach programs each year. System-wide, research and development expenditures exceeded $996 million in FY 2017 and helped drive the state’s economy.

Contact: Laylan Copelin
Vice Chancellor of Marketing and Communications
(979) 458-6425
(512) 289-2782 cell
lcopelin@tamus.edu

 

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Texas A&M System Regents OK $6.3 Billion Operating Budget, Capital Plan with $841.3 Million in New Projects

The Texas A&M University System News Release

COLLEGE STATION, Texas — The Texas A&M University System Board of Regents on Thursday approved a $6.3 billion operating budget for FY 2020 and a five-year, $2.9 billion capital plan that includes $841.3 million in new proposed projects.

The operating budget jumped to $6.3 billion from $4.7 billion, largely because the Legislature authorized the transfer of the Texas Department of Emergency Management into the A&M System as its eighth state agency.

The $2.9 billion capital plan includes approximately $2 billion of previously approved projects that are either in design or construction and the $841.3 million in proposed projects. The plan can be viewed here.

The RELLIS Campus in Bryan continues to grow with the Board of Regents approving the design and construction of a $50 million lab for the Army Futures Command, $30 million in infrastructure and $28.6 million for the second phase of the RELLIS Academic Complex. The Legislature also authorized $50 million for an innovative proving ground to be built at RELLIS in conjunction with the Army’s new lab.

A groundbreaking for the Army Futures Command’s complex is scheduled for October.

About The Texas A&M University System
The Texas A&M University System is one of the largest systems of higher education in the nation, with a budget of $6.3 billion. Through a statewide network of 11 universities, a comprehensive health science center, eight state agencies, and the RELLIS Campus, the Texas A&M System educates more than 153,000 students and makes more than 22 million additional educational contacts through service and outreach programs each year. System-wide, research and development expenditures exceeded $996 million in FY 2017 and helped drive the state’s economy.

Contact: Laylan Copelin
Vice Chancellor of Marketing and Communications
(979) 458-6425
(512) 289-2782 cell
lcopelin@tamus.edu

 

System News Archives

August 2019
M T W T F S S
 1234
567891011
12131415161718
19202122232425
262728293031  

Texas A&M University System Regents Approve Phase II of RELLIS Academic Complex Construction

The Texas A&M University System News Release

About The Texas A&M University System
The Texas A&M University System is one of the largest systems of higher education in the nation, with a budget of $6.3 billion. Through a statewide network of 11 universities, a comprehensive health science center, eight state agencies, and the RELLIS Campus, the Texas A&M System educates more than 153,000 students and makes more than 22 million additional educational contacts through service and outreach programs each year. System-wide, research and development expenditures exceeded $996 million in FY 2017 and helped drive the state’s economy.

Contact: Laylan Copelin
Vice Chancellor of Marketing and Communications
(979) 458-6425
(512) 289-2782 cell
lcopelin@tamus.edu

 

System News Archives

August 2019
M T W T F S S
 1234
567891011
12131415161718
19202122232425
262728293031