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A Home for EXCELLENCE

Engineering Bld

After launching a multimillion dollar building campaign in 1999, UT Tyler has joined with legislators, community benefactors and students to open cutting-edge facilities on campus, equipped with the latest technology and advances.


“All of the building efforts are partnerships between the state, which provides some funding, students through fees and the community through tremendous donations,” Dr. Lunsford said. “That’s a real legacy…building a university together.”

The joint effort has created a university campus with world-class facilities – over $120 million in construction so far. Since 1999, the university has opened:

  • Patriot Village university apartment complex.
  • A.W. and B.J. Riter Millennium Carillon Tower and Plaza
  • Mr. and Mrs. Joseph Z. Ornelas Residence Hall.
  • Ralph and Mary John Spence Fountain and Plaza.
  • The David G. and Jacqueline M. Braithwaite Building.The over 30,000 square-foot facility houses the School of Nursing with high-tech nursing labs and classrooms equipped for interactive television (ITV) broadcasting.
  • Louise Herrington Patriot Center. The center includes a state-of-the-art fitness center with cardio-theater and circuit training, a racquetball court, indoor track and gymnasium area with basketball and volleyball court. There is also a heated pool and spa.
  • New tennis courts.
  • The Bill Ratliff Engineering and Science Complex.
  • The UT Tyler Ballpark and Bob and Mary Irwin Baseball Field.
  • Citizens 1st Bank-Perkins Soccer Complex.

“Athletics promotes good health, not only while in college, but over a lifetime and is an important component of the overall quality of life that a university provides to the communities it serves,’’ Citizens 1st Bank President James Perkins said.

“Our family has been in East Texas for nearly 200 years and education has been an important part of our lives and our economic success,’’ said Perkins. “We know how important it is to be challenged in school and to have mental discipline in order to learn new things and apply oneself throughout life. And UT Tyler does an excellent job of challenging its students.’’

Another project, the three-story addition to the University Center, is in the process of being completed. It will include a new dining hall, sports café and a student development and organization suite.

A strong building program is essential for the continued growth of the university, Ratliff said. “The place was literally bursting at the seams. Before the nursing program building, they were in cramped quarters and the nursing program was exploding.

The same thing with the engineering building. The program had far outgrown the space,’’ Ratliff, a retired civil engineer said, adding that the naming of the building in his honor was “quite a surprise. I was tremendously flattered.”

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