Canyon, TX - As West Texas A&M continues to grow, it is also helping grow our local economy.
With the first phase of renovation for its engineering and computer science building, it hopes to give students more opportunities inside the classroom that they can also take into the real world.
WTAMU president, J. Patrick O'Brien, says it is critical for several industries in the panhandle. "We've got some pretty technologically demanding industries here in the panhandle, " O'Briend said. "Pantex, Bell helicopters... They need professional engineers."
Bell Helicopter President, John Garrison, Jr., says student are already making progress.
"We've hired over 25 students in the last six months out of our plant in Amarillo," Garrison said. "I can tell you they're doing an awesome job."
Current students say they hope they can have the same opportunity.
"Probably the coolest one would be Bell because they get to build helicopters and I've taken a tour of their facilities and it's really awesome," mechanical engineering senior, Titus Miller said. "Not everyone in the world gets to work on helicopters, especially military helicopters."
WTAMU's president says the building will help provide a better education for engineering students and also open doors of opportunity for them to stay in West Texas.
"There are plenty of good companies in this area that would be awesome to work for," Miller said. "Hopefully, I can get a job here in the panhandle and get back to West Texas."