At the groundbreaking ceremony for the Center for the Musical Arts, I was joined by elected officials and other UT Tyler administration and faculty for a ceremonial turning of the soil. Pictured (from left) are Vice President of Administration Jesse Acosta, Interim Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs Dr. Ross Sherman, Assistant Vice President for Facilities Management Chip Clark, Tyler Mayor Martin Heines, me, U.S. Representative Louie Gohmert, Dean of the College of Arts and Sciences Dr. Martin Slann and Director of the School of Performing Arts Dr. Michael Thrasher.
I was excited to join members of the UT Tyler family and our community on Jan. 29 as we celebrated the groundbreaking for the new Center for the Musical Arts. The groundwork has now begun on an addition to the Cowan Center that will provide state-of-the-art rehearsal and practice facilities for our rapidly growing music program.
The approximately 20,000 square-foot addition will pave the way for future growth, particularly in the area of instrumental music.
I want to thank all of those who joined us for the event. It was an honor to be able to address many of our friends and supporters as we celebrated the beginning of an outstanding new project.
More than 100 freshmen recently dedicated a day to assembling meals at the East Texas Food Bank. The food bank serves not just Tyler, but provides meals and essential items to local food pantries around East Texas.
The students volunteered as part of our annual Freshman Day of Service. This was the largest number of participants in the history of the event. I have also heard that this was the largest single group of volunteers to ever assist the East Texas Food Bank.
During the day, our students helped prepare food for more than 8,200 meals. What an impact their dedication will have on this region!
The UT Tyler family has always strived to make a real difference in East Texas, and I am glad to see our newest students carrying on that tradition.