Thank you to everyone who was able to join us for AgriLife Connect last week, both online and in person!
We are in the people business with everything we do, and we were so glad to be able to celebrate together. We awarded the Vice Chancellor’s Awards in Excellence on Thursday, and you can read about the winners on AgriLife Today.
On Friday, we heard from our four agency directors, and I gave the State of AgriLife Address. I encourage you to visit tx.ag/AgriLifeConnect to view the recordings and find links to photos. I thank Dr. Rick Avery, Dr. G. Cliff Lamb, Al Davis and Dr. Amy Swinford for their leadership and for sharing information and their visions with all of us.
To recap some highlights from the State of AgriLife address, my goal is for our organization to reach success by investing in people, investing in world-class tools and facilities, and investing in our students and their success. I am thankful we have strong unit leaders who understand the importance of making department and local decisions. We must have stability to create progress.
I believe AgriLife’s successes owe much to us living the Aggie Core Values. I also think people in our organization possess grit and heart in a big way, and that makes us magical at what we do!
When I think about my vision for Texas A&M AgriLife, I think about the saying that “one generation plants trees and the next generation enjoys the shade.” I encourage everyone to think about how we can plant “trees” for the next generation. Just as we benefit from the work done by people who came before us, we need to be “tree planters” for the people who will come after us.
The future for every area of agriculture and the life sciences depends on finding and supporting the best and brightest students. It is why on Friday I announced the launch of the most aggressive scholarship campaign in the history of our College: the Dean’s Excellence Scholarships. The goal is to create a series of $100,000 endowments to create four-year scholarships for entering freshmen. We plan on creating 30 endowments by the end of 2023 with the help of our Foundation team. To kick-off the campaign, the College has committed 60 four-year scholarships for incoming freshmen in 2023 and 2024. Read more about that campaign on AgriLife Today.
As our agency directors’ updates on Friday showed, Texas A&M AgriLife is an incredible organization, working together for a strong future.
Thank you for all you do! Here’s to making 2023 a great year for AgriLife!
Jeffrey W. Savell
Vice Chancellor and Dean, Agriculture and Life Sciences