Dear Tarleton Family,
As we approach the final stretch of the spring semester, activity and excitement continue to increase across the university. We’re seeing a jump in the use of educational, recreational and social gathering facilities, and it’s refreshing to watch fine arts performers and our athletic teams back in action after fall seasons were postponed.
All of this, and more, are signs that our handling of COVID-19 testing and safety protocols has paid off. Eradication of the virus through vaccination is working. As vaccine supplies continue to become more available, we are preparing for an in-person fall semester. It has been well documented that our students desire a return to face-to-face learning, mentoring and campus engagement.
Fall 2021 Semester
Application and admission acceptances are at an all-time high. We are confident we will exceed our target and enjoy another record enrollment. Our high school visits are separating us from competitors. We’re seeing a significant increase in applications and inquiry from the top 10% of academically prepared students, which means we are growing in quantity and quality.
Each day brings new promise that vaccinations are becoming widely available. In fact, Governor Abbott has declared that all Texans are eligible to receive the vaccination. Kindall and I were recently vaccinated, and I encourage each of you to consider getting vaccinated if you haven’t already. Together we can help end this dreadful virus and resume normal campus operations.
The university continues to join state government and our medical partners to secure access to vaccine doses for our employees and students. We’re working closely with Erath County leaders to secure vaccination appointments for employees as well.
I hope each of you has had the opportunity to personally or virtually meet our new Vice President for Research, Innovation and Economic Development, Dr. Rupa Iyer. If not, please do so soon. She recently announced the President’s Excellence in Research Scholars (PERS) initiative — a $1 million summer research engagement effort that financially rewards faculty-led student research and experiential learning.
This month we launched our Distinguished College Partnership Program, aimed at increasing the number of transfer students. Similar to the Distinguished High School Partners Program, the key components are creating seamless transfer pathways and establishing transfer scholarship funding. This new scholarship will allow us to attract the best and brightest transfer students from across Texas.
Last week the university officially unveiled Tarleton Forward 2030: Our Future-Focused Strategic Plan. It positions us as a front-runner for anyone seeking a university degree. The strategic plan document is the culmination of a year-long development that gathered input from all levels and stakeholders.
I want to thank Dr. Credence Baker for her leadership throughout the process and each of you for your commitment to advancing the mission of our great institution.
I look forward to the days when we can meet face-to-face and have meaningful conversation. I am thankful for your steadfast resilience the past 12 months. Many of you have gone above and beyond the call of duty. Trust me when I tell you, our students have noticed and are grateful.
Finish strong, and may you forever bleed purple!
Dr. James Hurley
Tarleton State University
Stephenville, Texas 76402
University Homepage: www.tarleton.edu