SMU students stand up for Texas Tuition Equalization Grants

Jake Torres

SMU students stand up for Texas Tuition Equalization Grants

Save TEG table in Hughes-Trigg Student CenterSMU students who receive Texas state tuition assistance are speaking up against proposed budget cuts that could jeopardize the grant program that provides the funds.

The Tuition Equalization Grant (TEG) program provides financial aid to students attending 42 private Texas colleges and universities. It awards grants averaging $3,400 to about 28,000 Texans with financial need each year, nearly half of whom are minorities.

The TEG program faces cuts of more than 40 percent; the proposed budget cuts would eliminate about 10,000 students from the grant program. More than 1,500 SMU students received the grant for the 2010-11 academic year.

Vice President for Student Affairs Lori White encouraged the University’s TEG recipients “to contact your Texas legislators and express your opinion about this issue” in an e-mail sent earlier this week.

A group of students met with state legislators at the Texas Capitol on Wednesday, March 2, 2011 to express their support for the TEG program. They included senior and student body president Jake Torres; seniors Laura Baez, Daniela Balderas and Brian Quarles; junior Bethany Mackingtee; sophomore Erin Hoya; and first-year Ryan Swick. Fernando Salazar, coordinator of Latina/o Student Services in Student Activities & Multicultural Student Affairs, joined them on the trip.

“This was an opportunity to make our voices heard,” Torres said. “We were able to emphasize the importance of these grants to the SMU community and to Texas.”

Students are gathering in support of the TEG program in the Hughes-Trigg Student Center Commons through 4 p.m. Wednesday, March 9. The students will have postcards and addresses to allow fellow TEG recipients to write to their representatives in the Texas Legislature.

(Above, SMU students and staff members at the Save TEG table in Hughes-Trigg Student Center include Gordon Brannon, Financial Aid; Fernando Salazar, SAMSA; senior Jake Torres, student body president; and junior Bethany Mackingtee. Photo by Isaac Cotherman.)

> Learn more from SMU News
> Read the students’ letter to the editor of The Dallas Morning News
> Read the students’ op-ed in The Austin American-Statesman
> Find coverage of the students’ Austin trip in the DMN’s Politics section
> More about SMU and TEG from the DMN Trailblazers blog
> Read and listen to coverage from KERA Public Radio audio

March 9, 2011|News|

George W. Bush Presidential Center breaks ground at SMU

Bush Presidential Center groundbreaking at SMU

More than 3,000 guests filled a massive tent on the site of the George W. Bush Presidential Center to celebrate groundbreaking for the building. Fifteen officials took up shovels to turn dirt, marking the official start of construction, with completion scheduled for 2013.

“Today is another milestone along a timeline that began for us in December 2000, when we began our effort to bring the George W. Bush Presidential Center to the University,” SMU President R. Gerald Turner told the crowd.

“We knew that this Presidential Center would benefit from its association with SMU because of the academic resources, vitality of dialogue and research programs we offer. Having the historic resources of the Library and Museum will provide remarkable opportunities for research and educational experiences for more than 200,000 K-13 students in the Metroplex,” Turner said.

George W. Bush welcomed the crowd, saying “To those of you who are not privileged to live in Texas, welcome to the great state. And welcome to one of the finest universities in the whole United States, Southern Methodist.” He said the groundbreaking “is an important milestone” and “the beginning of a journey. We take the first step toward the construction of this presidential center, which will be a dynamic hub of ideas and actions based upon timeless principles.”

Participating in the groundbreaking for the Bush Presidential Center were (left to right above) David S. Ferriero, Archivist of the United States; Ray Hunt, co-chair of the Bush Foundation Finance Committee, SMU trustee and chairman of Hunt Oil Company; Caren Prothro, chair of the SMU Board of Trustees; Alan Lowe, director of the Bush Presidential Library and Museum; Robert Stern, architect for the Bush Presidential Center; R. Gerald Turner, president of SMU; Condoleezza Rice, chair of the Bush Institute Advisory Board and former U.S. Secretary of State; George W. Bush; Laura Bush; Dick Cheney, former U.S. Vice President and former SMU trustee; Mark Langdale, president of the George W. Bush Foundation; Don Evans, co-chair of the Bush Foundation Finance Committee and former U.S. Secretary of Commerce; Michael Van Valkenburgh, landscape architect for the Bush Presidential Center; the Rev. Mark Craig, SMU trustee and pastor of Highland Park United Methodist Church; and Jake Torres, SMU student body president.

The Center includes the George W. Bush Presidential Library and Museum and the George W. Bush Institute.

> Read the whole story from SMU News
> Dignitaries visit with SMU students
> Watch video of the groundbreaking video
> See a slideshow of groundbreaking day slideshow
> Learn more about SMU and the Bush Center
> Visit the official Bush Center website

November 18, 2010|News, Tune In|
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