A new multimillion-dollar, state-of-the-art facility partnering Texas Tech and Lubbock ISD in pursuit of training in agriculture and STEM studies is a step closer to reality.
LISD and Texas Tech hosted a groundbreaking ceremony Tuesday for the planned Lubbock ISD AgriSTEM Complex, which is being funded through a portion of the district’s $130 million bond package from 2018.
The 44-acre campus will be located northeast of 4th Street and Quaker Avenue and is set to open by Fall 2023.
Last fall, both institutions announced plans for the Lubbock ISD AgriSTEM Complex, a new facility its leaders say will define the future of agricultural education for local students.
The Lubbock community demonstrated its support for educational opportunities in Lubbock ISD through the approval of the 2018 bond package. The bond package included a $10.5 million allocation for this new facility, Lubbock ISD Superintendent Dr. Kathy Rollo said.
She said they currently have more than 600 students enrolled in courses with two programs of study – plant science and animal science – and this facility will increase access to agricultural education for all Lubbock ISD high school students.
“This opportunity allows for the expansion of current offerings as well as new programs of study in the areas of science and technology, agribusiness, applied agricultural engineering, and environmental and natural resources,” Rollo said, adding the project is the result of the “strong vision of many Lubbock ISD stakeholders, district leadership and advisory boards.”
Texas Tech President Lawrence Schovanec said the university and Lubbock ISD coming together is a great example of collaboration to help develop the strength of agriculture in the community.
“The sustainability of agriculture is so dependent on educating the next generation and this complex is an essential part to help prepare that next generation,” Schovanec said.
Lubbock ISD Board of Trustees President Zach Brady described the complex as a state-of-the-art learning laboratory to prepare students for post-secondary success in agriculture and natural resources, with technical education specifically targeting job opportunities in our region.
“This partnership with Texas Tech University – a Carnegie Tier One university – creates a unique opportunity for students,” Brady said. “Now we’ll be distinct from any other program in the state of Texas or, in fact, in the United States.”