Copyright © 2018 Albuquerque Journal
New Mexico Junior College in Hobbs and Texas Tech University in Lubbock have signed an agreement that will make it easier for students seeking a four-year degree to transfer.
“We have a lot of students that are geared up and ready to go in terms of completing that bachelor’s degree, so that’s a good partnership,” said NMJC President Kelvin Sharp.
Sharp and Texas Tech President Lawrence Schovanec signed the “historic” agreement in Lubbock last week. A second agreement signed by the two presidents will allow junior college students to feed into the animal science program at Texas Tech and eventually the new School of Veterinary Medicine.
“New Mexico doesn’t have a vet school, but they’re willing to take animal science students from our program and then work them through the animal science at Texas Tech and then into their veterinary science school, which they plan to start in Amarillo,” Sharp said.
New Mexico transfer students also will qualify for in-state tuition because they are in a county that borders Texas, according to Texas Tech.
“With Hobbs just down the road from Lubbock, our institutions are serving our region through comprehensive educational offerings for students seeking educational opportunity in West Texas and Eastern New Mexico,” said Ethan Logan, associate vice president for enrollment management at Texas Tech, in a news release from the university.
The distance between Hobbs and Lubbock is about 110 miles, less than a two-hour drive.
“We want to provide opportunities for the students to transfer to Texas Tech with a minimum loss of hours,” said Melanie Hart, vice provost of eLearning & Academic Partnerships, a division of the Office of the Provost at Texas Tech, in the news release.
Texas Tech will advise NMJC students on courses they should take to make the transition “seamless,” according to Hart.
An academic adviser from Texas Tech visited the NMJC campus recently and was booked solid that day, extending appointments to 6 in the evening, Sharp said.
“I think the time frame is immediately,” he said when asked how soon students could transfer under the new agreement.
Affordability and proximity makes the new partnership a plus for students who want to get a bachelor’s degree.
NMJC’s president is looking for more ways to expand opportunities for students in eastern New Mexico.
“I hope that we can partner with institutions around the state of New Mexico the same way so that we can show students, ‘Hey, you can go to New Mexico State, you can go to UNM,’ ” Sharp said.