The third cohort of the Texas Tech MILE Program completed its third and final semester in the program during the spring 2023 semester. In addition to the cohort’s 14 students graduating from the program in May, the program traveled to Austin Feb. 28-March 2 during the Texas legislative session and held its third regional agriculture tour March 22-24 with a trip through the Texas Panhandle.
Texas Legislature Overview
In late February, MILE students traveled to Austin to gain a better understanding of Texas government and policy during the 88th Texas Legislature. Students received a “Texas Legislature 101” overview from former state senator and house member and TTU System chancellor, Robert Duncan, who served the state legislature for more than two decades. Speakers from both government and industry, most of whom were Texas Tech graduates, met with the group.
Representatives from both government and industry discussed the legislative process and career opportunities with the group, including speakers from the Office of the Governor, Office of the Texas Speaker of the House, Texas Trucking Association, Texas Bankers Association, Texas Nursery and Landscape Association, Texas and Southwestern Cattle Raisers Association, Texas Department of Agriculture, Texas Water Development Board and Texas Rural Funders.
While in Austin, the MILE Program participated in the Texas Tech Day at the Capitol events, which focused on celebrating the university’s centennial year.
A special thank you to Texas Corn Producers and Texas Bankers Association for hosting the students for dinners while in Austin.
Panhandle Ag Tour
During program’s Panhandle tour, students learned about the region’s diverse agricultural operations and the importance of local leadership and civic engagement. MILE III students had the opportunity to tour Legacy Farms dairy near Plainview, Tule Creek Outfitters in Tulia, and Caviness Beef Packers, Merrick Pet Care and Mc6 Cattle Feeders in Hereford. Alongside regional tours, students were able to speak with community leaders from the Texas Tech School of Veterinary Medicine, the AgTexas Farm Credit team in Amarillo, Amarillo Economic Development Corporation, Pantera Energy, Texas Cattle Feeders Association, the City of Amarillo, Hereford Economic Development Corporation, and the City of Hereford.
While at the Texas Tech vet school, MILE cohort II graduate and current vet school student, Kullen Sorrels, gave students a tour through the beautiful campus facility and nearby Mariposa Station lab facility.
The tour was made possible thanks to the generous support from AgTexas Farm Credit whose sponsorship of the program’s South Plains and Panhandle Ag Tour provides high-impact learning experiences and industry engagement for our students.