WICHITA FALLS, Texas (KCBD) - Midwestern State University in Wichita Falls has announced it has received an invitation to join the Texas Tech University System. If the university accepts it will be the fifth member of Tech’s system.
The MSU board of regents has asked the university’s President, Suzanne Shipley, to collect input from its members. Those conversations will begin next week, according to an MSU news release.
“At the February Board of Regents meeting, I was asked to engage in dialogue with our campus and our community regarding an invitation to consider joining the Texas Tech University System," Shipley said in an official university statement. “The Board has asked that I host a series of campus conversations, followed by community conversations, to assess interest, answer questions, and address concerns regarding a response to this invitation.”
Those community meeting are set to take place from 10:30 a.m.-noon Feb. 21 and 4-5 p.m. Feb. 26 inside the Wichita Falls Museum of Art.
Conversations with members of MSU board of regents will begin in April. Then, during a May 14 board meeting, there will be a discussion over the input the university collected during its conversations.
“Joining a system of higher education is an important decision, and we are optimistic to explore the benefits of aligning MSU Texas’ best interests with those of our System for the betterment of higher education in our state," Christopher Huckabee, Tech system’s board chairman, said.
Currently, the Tech system is made up of four universities: Texas Tech, Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center in Lubbock, Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center El Paso and Angelo State University. Within those four universities there is about 55,000 students with 17 campuses in the U.S. and internationally.
“Many may ask why we as a strong and financially robust institution might wish to exchange our status as one of four independent universities to become one of five in a single system,” Shipley said. “That is exactly the question the Board is exploring and has asked us to consider in the next two months—is this the right time for us to become part of a system and do we align well with the Texas Tech University System?”