Army Secretary, DARPA Chief Visit Texas A&M

The Texas A&M University System News Release image header. Office of Marketing Communications. 979-458-6023
Tour of Texas A&M-RELLIS, Lunch with Corps of Cadets Highlighted

BRYAN-COLLEGE STATION, Texas — Pentagon leaders visiting Aggieland today discussed future military needs with leaders of The Texas A&M University System, members of the Corps of Cadets and other potential partners in national security innovation.

U.S. Army Secretary Christine Wormuth spent the day in a series of discussions both on the main university campus and at Texas A&M RELLIS, where the George H.W. Bush Combat Development Complex (BCDC) recently opened to help government, universities and industry accelerate high-tech military modernization.

Stefanie Tompkins, director of the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA), was also on hand, along with Douglas R. Bush, assistant secretary of the Army for Acquisition, Technology and Logistics; and Rob McHenry, DARPA deputy director.

As the day ended, Wormuth expressed confidence in the innovation efforts she learned about here:

“To tackle pressing high technology national security challenges, it is essential that we work together with partners like DARPA and the Bush Combat Development Complex at Texas A&M. I was delighted to see the research being conducted at BCDC on critical capabilities that our military will need to win the future fight. The future of American defense innovation is bright.”

Wormuth has roots in the region. She graduated from A&M Consolidated High School in College Station. As army secretary, she is the senior civilian official within the Department of Defense responsible for all matters related to the Army.

Her visit coincided with Texas A&M’s “DARPA Forward” conference this week that included nearly 400 in-person participants and another 400 virtual attendees. The conference was among six being held nationwide this fall at what the agency describes as “leading research and development universities.”

DARPA officials are using the conferences to connect with academic researchers and private-sector executives and to identify projects that can fuel breakthroughs in emerging technologies.

Wormuth spoke at the DARPA conference and had lunch with a dozen ROTC members.

“It was wonderful to spend time with the Texas A&M (Army) Corp of Cadets,” she said. “Recruiting and training the next generation of military leaders is critical to our national security, and I was deeply impressed by the professionalism, enthusiasm and discipline of A&M’s Corps of Cadets.”

Wormuth also met with Texas A&M University President M. Katherine Banks, Corps of Cadets Commandant Brig. Gen. Patrick Michaelis and BCDC Director Tim Green.

“We are pleased to welcome Secretary of the Army Christine Wormuth to our campus,” Banks said. “Texas A&M is committed to serving and protecting our country through our extensive expertise in national security, research and development partnerships with the Army, Department of Defense and DARPA, and by commissioning record numbers of officers into the military through our Corps of Cadets. We stand ready to find solutions and develop technologies to better secure our nation and protect our military.”

Michaelis, who recently retired from the service, said it was an honor to have the Secretary of the Army take time to interact with the cadets.

“I had an informed discussion with Secretary Wormuth about potential partnerships between the Army and the Corps of Cadets,” Michaelis said. “I know there are some unique opportunities available only to Army ROTC cadets at Texas A&M. If we have the ability to expand those opportunities, the impact could be significant.”

At the Texas A&M-RELLIS Campus, Wormuth, Bush and Tompkins discussed modernization with U.S. Army Lt. Gen. Ross Coffman, deputy commanding general for U.S. Army Futures Command; John Sharp, chancellor of The Texas A&M System; John E. Hurtado, interim vice chancellor and dean of Texas A&M’s College of Engineering; and Joe Elabd, vice chancellor for research.

“We’re grateful for the opportunity to host these distinguished leaders,” Sharp said. “Now they have seen firsthand what so many in the Pentagon have heard: that Texas A&M University and Texas A&M-RELLIS are ready to serve the nation’s needs.”


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 $7.2 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 152,000 students and makes more than 24 million additional educational contacts through service and outreach programs each year. System-wide, research and development expenditures exceed $1 billion and help drive the state’s economy.

Contact: Mike Reilly
Office of Marketing and Communications
(979) 458-6492
(402) 679-0456 cell
mreilly@tamus.edu

Regents Approve more than $328 million in new construction

The Texas A&M University System News Release image header. Office of Marketing Communications. 979-458-6023

BRYAN-COLLEGE STATION, Texas — The Texas A&M University System’s meteoric growth was fueled today as Regents voted to approve spending more than $328 million on capital projects across the state.

The Texas A&M University System has more than $4.1 billion worth of construction projects in planning and design, construction or development in Texas.

Funding for projects approved today included:

  • $8.4 million for the Bain Athletic Expansion Project at West Texas A&M
  • $17.6 million for a Student Services Building at Texas A&M University-Commerce
  • $29.3 million for student housing at Texas A&M University –San Antonio
  • $7 million for infrastructure at the RELLIS Campus in Bryan
  • $83.2 million for the Student-Athlete Academic & Wellness Center and Bright-Slocum Center at Texas A&M
  • $38 million for a new parking garage at Tarleton State University
  • $55 million for Borlaug Southern Crop Improvement Center Renovations in College Station
  • $4.5 million for the TEES Detonation Research Test Facility Project in Bryan
  • $17.4 million to build a student recreation center at Texas A&M University-San Antonio
  • $7.1 million for the Health Sciences Education and Research Center and the Western Hemispheric Trade Center expansion projects at Texas A&M International University in Laredo
  • $45 million for renovation of the Education Building and for health and safety upgrades across campus at West Texas A&M University in Canyon.
  • $2.9 million for AgriLife Vernon Campus storm repairs
  • $5.5 million for renovation of Dunn Hall at Texas A&M
  • $5.8 million for HVAC work in the Bringle Lake Village dorm at Texas A&M University-Texarkana
  • $1.7 million to build the Texas A&M Forest Services’ Hudson Office in Lufkin.

Additionally, Regents approved amending the Texas A&M University System’s 2023-2027 Capital Plan to include:

  • $60 million for renovations to Olsen Field at Blue Bell Park at Texas A&M
  • $25 million for the West Campus Player Development Center and Ellis Field renovations at Texas A&M
  • $9 million for the Outdoor Competition Throws and Warmup Track at Texas A&M
  • $3.8 million for a Research Administration Building at Tarleton State University

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 $7.2 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 152,000 students and makes more than 24 million additional educational contacts through service and outreach programs each year. System-wide, research and development expenditures exceed $1 billion and help drive the state’s economy.

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

Regents Recognize Exemplary Faculty and Professionals

The Texas A&M University System News Release image header. Office of Marketing Communications. 979-458-6023

BRYAN-COLLEGE STATION, Texas — Regents today named 12 Texas A&M University System faculty members and 11 agency service, extension or research professionals as Regents Professors and Regents Fellows for 2022-2023.

The Texas A&M University System Regents established the Regents Professor Awards program in 1996 and the Regents Fellow Service Awards program in 1998 to recognize faculty and employees who have made extraordinary contributions to their university, or agency, as well as to the people of Texas.

This year’s recipients of the Regents Professor Award are:

  • Dr. Bart Ballard, Texas A&M University-Kingsville
  • Dr. Irene Calboli, Texas A&M University
  • Dr. Chuleeporn “Nikki” Changchit, Texas A&M University-Corpus Christi
  • Dr. Michael R. Daley, Texas A&M University-Central Texas
  • Dr. Robert W. Haynes, Texas A&M International University
  • Dr. R. Malatesha Joshi, Texas A&M University
  • Dr. Reza Langari, Texas A&M University
  • Dr. Jay Maddock, Texas A&M Health Science Center
  • Dr. Samba Reddy, Texas A&M Health Science Center
  • Dr. E. Gloria C. Regisford, Prairie View A&M University
  • Dr. Wendell Sadler, Tarleton State University
  • Dr. Bradford P. Wilcox, Texas A&M University

This year’s recipients of the Regents Fellow Service Awards are:

  • Dr. Rafael M. Aldrete, Texas A&M Transportation Institute
  • Dr. Michael Brewer, Texas A&M AgriLife Research
  • Dr. Paul DeLaune, Texas A&M AgriLife Research
  • Dr. Karen Dixon, Texas A&M Transportation Institute
  • Mr. Jay Hall, Texas Department of Emergency Management
  • Dr. Terry Hensley, Texas A&M Veterinary Medical Diagnostic Laboratory
  • Mr. Mark A. Posada, Texas A&M Engineering Extension Service
  • Mr. Dallas Renfrew, Texas A&M Engineering Extension Service
  • Mr. Robert “Skip” Richter, Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service
  • Dr. Dana Tarter, Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service
  • Mr. Billy Whitworth, Texas A&M Forest Service

The selection process for the awards begins with a call for nominations from the chancellor. Final nominations are put forth to the chief executive officer of each respective entity. They are then subject to a system-level review consisting of academic vice chancellors and past recipients of the awards. Finally, nominations are forwarded to the chancellor and the board for final approval.

To date, 291 Texas A&M system faculty members have been recognized with the Regents Professor Award and 175 agency professionals have received the Regents Fellow Service Award.


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 $7.2 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 152,000 students and makes more than 24 million additional educational contacts through service and outreach programs each year. System-wide, research and development expenditures exceed $1 billion and help drive the state’s economy.

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

Regents Name Sole Finalist for President at Prairie View A&M University

The Texas A&M University System News Release image header. Office of Marketing Communications. 979-458-6023

Tomikia P. LeGrande photoBRYAN-COLLEGE STATION, Texas — The Texas A&M University System’s Board of Regents on Thursday named Tomikia P. LeGrande as the sole finalist to become the ninth President of Prairie View A&M University.

After a nationwide search, Chancellor John Sharp recommended Dr. LeGrande as sole finalist and the Board approved. Under state law, the Board of Regents name a finalist for at least 21 days before making the appointment at a subsequent meeting.

Dr. LeGrande, who is currently Vice President for Strategy, Enrollment Management and Student Success at Virginia Commonwealth University, would not assume her duties at Prairie View A&M until the end of the 2022-23 school year.

She would succeed Dr. Ruth Simmons, who will become President Emerita and will hold a faculty appointment as University Professor, a position that will allow her to remain a campus figure raising money, expanding the national profile of the university and lecturing to another generation of students.

“Dr. LeGrande will provide great leadership for the Panthers for many years to come,” said Chancellor Sharp. “Her experience and leadership in enrollment management and student success is exactly what PVAMU needs at this juncture to build on the great work Ruth Simmons has provided these past five years. I’m excited by where PVAMU is headed.”

Dr. LeGrande, who has been at Virginia Commonwealth University since 2018, has experience in Texas. She served as an administrator for student affairs and enrollment management at the University of Houston-Downtown from 2012 to 2018. She also received a doctorate in higher education administration from Texas Tech University.

Prior to her duties in Houston, Dr. LeGrande worked at North Carolina A&T State University and Winston-Salem State University.

She received her bachelor’s in chemistry from Savannah State University and a master’s in chemistry from North Carolina A&T State University.

“I want to thank Chancellor Sharp and the Board of Regents for the opportunity to serve as President of Prairie View A&M University. PVAMU has a strong legacy of transforming the lives of its students and contributing to the surrounding region and state of Texas, both educationally and economically. I look forward to working with the faculty, staff, and community as we honor and build upon the university’s powerful legacy and upward trajectory.”

In May, a 14-member committee was created to conduct a national search to find Dr. Simmons’ successor. The search was led by Bill Mahomes, Vice Chairman of the Board of Regents, and Regent Elaine Mendoza.


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 $7.2 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 152,000 students and makes more than 24 million additional educational contacts through service and outreach programs each year. System-wide, research and development expenditures exceed $1 billion and help drive the state’s economy.

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

Tomikia P. LeGrande photo

Media Advisory: Board of Regents to Meet Thursday

The Texas A&M University System News Release image header. Office of Marketing Communications. 979-458-6023

BRYAN-COLLEGE STATION, Texas —The Texas A&M University System Board of Regents will convene at 8 a.m. on Thursday, November 10th in the Bethancourt Ballroom 2300 in the Memorial Student Center on the campus of Texas A&M University

The Board will immediately recess to executive session. At approximately 2:30 p.m., the Board will reconvene in open session to consider:

  • Naming a sole finalist for the position of President of Prairie View A&M University;
  • Authorizing the negotiation of a Master Agreement and one or more ground leases for the development of Texas A&M-Fort Worth campus.
  • Authorizing the disposition of approximately 2.5 acres in the south portion of the Texas A&M University’s Health Science Center campus as a future site for a Brazos County medical examiners facility.

The Board also will consider authorizing several construction projects, including:

  • Bain Athletic Expansion Project at West Texas A&M University;
  • Student Services Building at Texas A&M University-Commerce;
  • Parking Garage at Tarleton State University.
  • Recreation Center at Texas A&M University-San Antonio;
  • The Health Sciences Education and Research Center and Western Hemispheric Trade Center Expansion at Texas A&M International University;
  • Research Administration Building for Tarleton State University.

Members of the public also may access the meeting at https://www.tamus.edu/regents/live-streams/


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 $7.2 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 152,000 students and makes more than 24 million additional educational contacts through service and outreach programs each year. System-wide, research and development expenditures exceed $1 billion and help drive the state’s economy.

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