Texas Tech University System Institutions Welcome Sen. John Cornyn to CampusesU.S. Sen. John Cornyn visited campuses throughout the TTU System to see firsthand how the CARES Act, a coronavirus relief bill, is helping universities battle the COVID-19 pandemic.
August 25, 2020 | By Montana Chandler
The Texas Tech University System and its universities hosted and welcomed U.S. Sen. John Cornyn for a visit on Monday (Aug. 17) in San Angelo at Angelo State University (ASU) and Tuesday (Aug. 18) in both Lubbock and Amarillo, including Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center (TTUHSC) and Texas Tech University (TTU).
The purpose for the visits was for Sen. Cornyn to see firsthand how the CARES Act, a coronavirus relief bill he supported in March, is helping TTU System institutions combat the COVID-19 pandemic.
Sen. Cornyn visited the ASU campus on a special occasion for the university — the first day of fall classes and the official announcement of Ronnie Hawkins Jr. as the 11th president of ASU.
Sen. Cornyn and President Hawkins joined TTU System Chancellor Tedd L. Mitchell, M.D., TTU System First Lady Janet Tornelli-Mitchell, M.D., ASU alumnus and TTU System Regent Mickey L. Long and other members of the TTU System and ASU leadership for the campus tour.
ASU received approximately $6.8 million in federal funding from the CARES Act of which $3.2 million was used to support 2,637 ASU students in continuing their education.
Following the campus tour, Chancellor Mitchell, Sen. Cornyn and President Hawkins joined other community leaders, including San Angelo Mayor Brenda Gunter, Tom Green County Judge Steve Floyd and San Angelo Independent School District Superintendent Carl Dethloff for a joint press conference to discuss the CARES Act funding for the community.
|Mitchell and Cornyn||Cornyn||Hawkins and Cornyn|
|Cornyn||Cornyn with ASU students||Mitchell and Hawkins|
|Cornyn||Joint press conference||Cornyn|
Tuesday, Sen. Cornyn began the day by visiting TTUHSC in Lubbock where he was welcomed by Chancellor Mitchell, TTUHSC President Lori Rice-Spearman, TTU President Lawrence Schovanec, Lubbock Mayor Dan Pope, UMC Medical System President and CEO Mark Funderburk, and members of the TTU System and TTUHSC leadership team.
Sen. Cornyn toured a drive-thru COVID-19 testing clinic and was briefed on both telehealth clinical visits and telehealth curriculum for TTUHSC students. Sen. Cornyn was updated on the ways in which CARES Act funding has supported research, innovation and collaboration between TTU and TTUHSC.
Cornyn’s visit was concluded with a visit to Amarillo on Tuesday where Sen. Cornyn toured the viral transport media (VTM) lab where TTUHSC’s team produced VTM testing vials used for COVID testing. The TTUHSC Amarillo tour also included other types of medical equipment that CARES Act funding assisted the university in purchasing to help fight the pandemic.
Sen. Cornyn, Chancellor Mitchell and President Rice-Spearman were then joined by Amarillo Mayor Ginger Nelson, North West Texas Health System CEO Ryan Chandler, BSA Health System CEO Bob Williams and Amarillo College President Russell Lowery-Hart for a joint press conference with the Amarillo media.
TTU benefited from the CARES Act by receiving approximately $27.5 million in federal funding — with $12.8 million used to support TTU students. TTUHSC received approximately $6.4 million in CARES Act funding with more than $897,000 for its student body. Combined, TTU and TTUHSC were able to provide funding to more than 22,000 students.
The day was completed with Sen. Cornyn visiting the construction site of the new TTU School of Veterinary Medicine, which is located on the TTUHSC Amarillo Campus. Sen. Cornyn had a chance to sign a beam from the facility and pose for a photo with TTU System leaders and Mayor Nelson.
|Cornyn on TTUHSC Amarillo tour||Cornyn on TTUHSC Amarillo tour||Joint press conference at TTUHSC Amarillo|
|Cornyn||Cornyn on TTUHSC Amarillo tour||Cornyn at TTU Veterinary Medicine site|
About the Texas Tech University System
Established in 1996 and headquartered in Lubbock, Texas, the Texas Tech University System is a $2 billion higher education enterprise focused on advancing higher education, health care, research and community outreach. Consisting of four universities – Texas Tech University, Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center, Angelo State University and Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center El Paso – the TTU System collectively has approximately 55,000 students, 17 campuses statewide and internationally, more than 300,000 alumni and an endowment valued at over $1.3 billion.
During the 86th Texas Legislature under the leadership of Chancellor Dr. Tedd L. Mitchell, legislative funding and authority was provided to establish a new Texas Tech University veterinary school in Amarillo and a new dental school at Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center El Paso. This will be the state’s first veterinary school in more than a century and first dental school in over 50 years. The addition of these two schools makes the Texas Tech University System one of only nine in the nation to offer programs for undergraduate, medical, law, nursing, pharmacy, dental and veterinary education, among other academic areas.