AMARILLO, Texas (KFDA) - A school that has been an idea for 50 years will finally be finished in August this year.
Since the groundbreaking in 2019, construction of the new school has been underway for about 13 months.
Before that, faculty say it took two years just planning the program and building.
“We have been working very hard to get to this year where we get to welcome our first class and start delivering the curriculum,” said Guy Loneragan, dean of the School of Veterinary Medicine, Texas Tech University.
Loneragan says this year represents 50 years that Texas Tech has been working to build a veterinary program.
And come August, the program will be up and running.
“We had over 700 students begin the application process with us. Over the last few months, we’ve been narrowing that down to those that we want to interview. We spent four days interviewing them. Wrapped that up today, now the hard work begins to select only 60 for our very first class,” said Loneragan.
60 students this year, 80 next year and after that, 100 students a year will be admitted into the Texas Tech School of Veterinary Medicine.
“All of those students will be predominately residents of Texas, with a few residents of New Mexico. But just these two states and primarily Texas,” said Loneragan.
From now until August 16, when classes start, construction will consist of painting and texturing, installing flooring and elevators and putting the exterior on the building.
“It is a lot of hard work and a lot of hard effort by a lot of people,” said Brandon Robertson, project director, Western Builders.
A new school isn’t the only thing coming out of this.
Robertson says most of the subcontractors are from Amarillo.
He says this means money is being poured back into the community, especially during a time of need.
“The men and women that are out here everyday live here and this is their home. The money that is being spent is being put right back into our economy here,” said Robertson.
Despite the pandemic, Loneragan and Robertson both say the school is on track to be ready for the first day of school in August of this year.