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Longview University Center: Great education awaits local students


The University of Texas at Tyler (UTT) is not an exclusive institution. It offers its outstanding educational programs to scholars throughout the Free World, including Longview students via the Longview University Center. This local campus provides cost-saving convenience, cuts out long-range commutes for students, provides increased flexibility in scheduling, and in general gives Gregg County students a great deal of convenience in pursuing their educations. Careers in health services are of paramount importance.

Longview University Center Director Dr. Van Patterson is pleased with the progress of his student nurses.

He describes how they typically achieve high scores on the enclex–which is a nursing examination in which Longview students consistently outscore nursing students on the Tyler and Palestine campuses. Despite this level of success, many Gregg County residents (including potential students) are unaware of the Longview University Center’s offerings.

In addition, Patterson points to how the Longview University Center small classes make learning easier, and saves students on gasoline as well as wear and tear on their automobiles. Students attending the Longview University Center can earn full degrees without having to leave Gregg County because the Center is cooperating with Kilgore College to reduce education costs by allowing students to commence at Kilgore, and finish their education at the Center.

Besides its second-to-none nursing program, the Longview University Center offers a degree program in Human Resource Development and a Masters in Public Administration online. Recently, a Criminal Justice program was added to the curriculum. Students are encouraged to enroll at Kilgore College, and then transfer to the Longview University Center to finish up their four-year degree.

Furthermore, the Longview University Center Development Council has set up and dedicated an endowed scholarship wall for the recognition of patrons whose contributions have expanded and enabled Gregg County residents’ educational opportunities. Support from the community is a major factor in the program’s success.

“Endowed scholarships make a tremendous difference in the lives of our students. An endowment creates a permanent legacy for Longview University Center students because only the interest is used to provide financial aid, while the principle continuously grows,” said Patterson. “Since their inception these scholarships have provided financial assistance to hundreds of students who are residents of Longview and pursuing their education at the UT-Tyler Longview University Center.”
The wall features the following endowed scholarships:

  • Neal and Peggy Garland Scholarship, established 1999 by Neal and Peggy Garland
  • Hogan/Whitaker Endowed Scholarship, established 2003 by John and Gladys Whitaker
  • Laurie Ellard Bates Scholarship Fund, established 2003 by family, friends and peers
  • UT-Tyler LUC Circle of Friends Endowed Scholarship, established 2008 from generous donations of Longview citizens
  • Jere J. Ruff and John Nay Thomas Scholarship, established 2009 by Eric Ruff, Barbara Pool and Friends
  • Jack Mathewson Mann Scholarship, created 2010 by the Mann family and friends

“The Endowed Scholarship Wall is located on the first floor of Garland Hall, adjacent to Room 113,” said Patterson. “I hope the citizens of Longview will take a few minutes the next time they visit the LUC to read the plaques recognizing the generosity of those who believe that helping others is a good investment in the future of our community.”

The minimum level for establishing an endowed fund is $10,000. For more information on how to create an endowed scholarship at the UT-Tyler LUC please call (903) 663-8100.

Patterson took his bachelor’s degree from East Texas Baptist University, his master’s from Baylor University, and his doctorate from Texas A&M at Commerce. He and his wife Marty, a librarian, have been married for 24 years. They have two children–son David is a senior at Texas A&M at College Station and is studying ocean engineering. Daughter Holly is a senior at Pine Tree High School, where she is a cheerleader and tennis player.

The UT-Tyler Longview University Center is located at 3201 North Eastman Road in Longview. For more information please call (903) 663-8100 or go online to uttyler.edu/luc.