by Jill O'Neal
As Brittney is finishing her first year at Texas Tech, we take every opportunity we get to talk with her about how fortunate and lucky she is to have received the Terry Scholarship. We are so thankful to the foundation and feel certain Brittney will work to give back to this great group of people.
Brittney participated in orientation and we encouraged her to do everything she could to get involved in school. As a Tech Terry Scholar, this enabled her to have a fantastic room in the residence hall and an instant inner circle of friends. Going into the year, we did not realize the amount of functions, the proximity of the other Terry’s living quarters and the instant feeling of belonging to a group that she would encounter.
A few things that I wish we had done prior to the start of school is to come up with a plan for things that might occur. Lubbock is over five hours from our home and although we visit, we are not close enough to be there quickly. Prior to starting or early in the first semester, I wish we had scoped out a few places. From where to buy groceries, a clinic that takes your insurance, an auto-body shop, a local dentist and a place to have your oil changed or your tires rotated would have been helpful information. Having caught the flu and unfortunately, having a fender bender happened this year and it would have been easier on Brittney if we had done some ground work ahead of time.
I think the busier kids are and the more involved they get in school, the less likely they are to get homesick; however, even though they may be super busy, they will get homesick. You will miss them as much as they miss you. For me, it has helped to send things in the mail to Brittney. She knows we are thinking about her and I love the tone in her voice when she calls after receiving a care package.
Most kids today have their own debit card and bank account. We talked with Brittney a lot about spending, budgeting and making the money she receives from the foundation last. She has complete control, but we absolutely talk about her budget, how she is spending her money and her long term plan. We talk about her bank account frequently.
TALK ABOUT THINGS THAT MATTER
The best advice I can give to a parent of a child that is about to start college is to talk to your child. Talk to them frequently and talk to them about things that matter. If you are doing that on a daily basis prior to school starting, they are going to continue to talk to you once they arrive at Tech. They will have roommate issues, encounter people that have different values than they do, face rejection, develop a crush, fall in love, have accidents, get sick, realize they have to study differently than in high school, find new friends, miss their siblings, spend too much money, realize they are no longer the biggest fish in the pond and make choices that will shape and mold their future. Having an open line of communication with them will allow you to continue to be a part of their life and will give them the support they need as they grow into adulthood.
Texas Tech is a great school and the people that work with the Tech Terry Foundation will help you support your child when you are not there. Know that your child will forever be a Red Raider and you will forever wear red and black.
by Terri Boston Ward
Welcome to all the 2016-2017 Texas Tech Terry Scholars and Parents~
In Spring 2013 when we came to Texas Tech to visit we were lucky enough to visit with Heather Medley... at that moment little did she know she would change our college life forever.
Her commitment and belief in the Terry Foundation and to educate us on their philosophy of education encouraged Brooke to apply and receive funds for her collegiate path.
Just about the time we would run into obstacles in Brooke's road of education, a new door with Terry Foundation would open. The added bonus of funds for a semester of Study Abroad was a tremendous blessing! I would encourage every Terry Scholar to work with your advisor as a Freshman and work this opportunity into your curriculum - even if it is just a summer.
The monetary aspect of the Terry Foundation is just a small part of what your son/daughter will gain from this opportunity. Mentors, friendships, travels and social gatherings are going to be a lifetime of memories that your son/daughter will engage in while at Texas Tech University.
Brooke will graduate in December 2016 and go on to pursue a degree at Pharmacy School. She hopes to run across other Terry Scholars as she grows in her career endeavors. Our family thanks the Terry Foundation for the dreams they have allowed Brooke to pursue and the road the paved for her success without debt.
Wreck 'em Tech Terry Scholars,
by Robyn Cox, Gaven's Mom
First of all I would like to say welcome to the Texas Tech Terry family!
If you are like I was the excitement and joy about the opportunities awaiting your child are mixed with the waves of nostalgia and a great sense of loss. I remember the fears of being the “helicopter” parent overwhelmed me as I thought of how I was going to let my baby, my first born, go out into the world without me. How would he ever survive? Who will do his laundry? Will he eat? Who will stay on him about his studies? All the things a parent takes care of and worries about they will be faced with doing on their own. Whether your child is 1 or 10 hours away the nerves and mixed emotions are real and uncontrollable and that is OK. I later learned it is just all part of the process. Last year at this time, I was like all of you, gearing up for graduation and crying for no apparent reason as I drove alone in my car or gathered his pictures for the senior slide show. Where had my baby gone?
BUT, here I am a year later and boy what a great year it has been. After graduation we enjoyed our summer and prepared for the big move. Everything at orientation was so organized and helpful. We were lost as a goose at first, but the faculty will gladly help you know where to go and what to do next. Luckily for us our children have what many college students do not have, they have a built in family. Once becoming a Terry your child will be invited to various social networking pages and be friended by fellow Terry’s. Encourage their interaction. Making acquaintances prior to arrival helps ease their nerves and gives them something to look forward to. It was very comforting for me as a mom when my sons Terry mentor showed up, introduced himself and actually helped us during the move in process. Our Terry family will have a get together during move in, please come. For me, meeting other parents and getting to know them and their kids that my child will be spending time with helped ease my fears. Knowing there is a built in family that will be inviting my child places and helping him adjust was profound. My son adjusted rather quickly and I credit the foundation for a great deal of that. If they are not seeing the other Terry’s at events they check on them and that is priceless.
My son is not one to call, and although hard at first, it is ok. I have had to talk myself out of scolding him for not calling more. I have to understand he is adjusting just as I and his schedule is very different. We communicate via text almost daily and I have found that that is okay with me and when I do get the phone call I have to hide my giddiness so he doesn’t make fun of me. I had learned to not “electronically leash” my child and with that he and I communicate effectively and often. You will find your happy medium as well.
I learned to lean on other parents who were going through the same thing and I encourage you to do the same. The fact that your child has earned the Terry tells me that you have laid a great foundation over the past 18 years. That foundation will not leave as they do for college. They will adjust at their own pace. You have done a good job, trust in that. (although that is probably the hardest part)
Leaving our son was undoubtedly the most difficult moment. I stressed over our closing words. I felt I needed to leave him with some great wisdom or book worthy quote. You don’t. We all hugged and I left him with “I love you” and that was just enough for the both of us.
Changes at home are although noticeable, easier now. It takes time, but the adjustment comes and then you look forward to the visits as will your child. Although new, the next chapter is amazing in its own way. The pride I feel seeing my child adjust and thrive is well worth the pain of having to “let go”.
God speed to all Freshman Terry’s and prayers to every college parent
Here is what I would offer to those parent whose students have been fortunate enough to make it to the interview round....
Before you ever head to the interview, hug your student and let them know how proud you are that they have made it to the interview. That by itself is a tremendous honor and says so much about the child you have raised. The majority, and they are all great students and great people, don't even make the cut to the interview.
Make sure they do their research! Have them read everything they can about the history of the Terry Foundation and the Terry Scholarship. Appreciate the vision and the generosity of Mr. Terry. Ask them this question..."If you had the financial capacity to bless people like Mr. Terry has done, would you do so?" It might help them consider how they are in this position to begin with.
Talk to your student about what an interview might look like. Help them envision a board room with a number of people sitting on one side of the table and the student sitting on the other side. How do you sit? What do you do with your hands? Who do you look at? Do you shake everyone's hands when you come in or when you leave...or both? How much do you say? Should they answer a question with a simple yes or no? You've been training and teaching your child all their life...this is another teachable moment!
Encourage them to relax (easier said than done!). Don't put any pressure on them by reminding them what the scholarship could be worth. They know that already. Focus on the great experience they are getting simply by being able to take part in an interview like this. Remind them that this experience, whether they receive the scholarship or not, will benefit them greatly later in life. Take another opportunity to tell them how proud you are that they have been invited to interview, but remind them that this new stage of life they are about to embark on (college!) will be a fantastic experience even if they aren't selected to be a Terry Scholar.
Finally, if you are a person and family of faith, pray with your child! One of the best things I did with my son before we took the elevator up to "the interview room" was to sit in a quiet place and pray over him...specifically praying for calmness.
When the interview is over, you're going to want to ask questions. Don't do that initially. They've just been answering a lot of questions, and their heads are kind of spinning. Let them tell you how it went. Don't critique their answers unless they ask your opinion. Remind them again how proud you are...and take them to eat somewhere so they can relax!
We thought we understood what an amazing scholarship and opportunity the Terry Foundation Scholarship was before our son interviewed, and we thought we REALLY understood when he was blessed by being named a Terry Scholar. Now, almost two years into his time as a Tech Terry, we realize we had no idea! We are so thankful for the Terry Foundation and the way the Tech Terry people make it seem like a family.
Had our son not received the scholarship, we would still be proud of him...and we would still think the Terry Scholar program is fantastic!
My daughter was nervous when she received the first call about the interview for a chance to receive the Terry scholarship at Texas Tech. The nervousness didn't end until the day interview was scheduled was finally over. After arriving for the interview, my daughter and I were welcome by kind staff who made us feel comfortable about the meeting to come. As I sat and waited for my daughter to end the interview, I learn a lot of information from the college representatives about the Terry scholarship, freshman year, and how it was a privilege to be considered for this scholarship. Finding out over six hundred applicants applied for the scholarship and only about sixty five were called for an interview. We had no prior knowledge of Texas Tech or the Terry scholarship Foundation before attending the interview. My daughter first choice college was Baylor. So many colleges had solicited her application. Harvard had interviewed her prior to meeting.
Once leaving the Terry interview, we were no longer confused about what college to choose. My daughters' interest had change to Texas Tech. We prayed and hoped she would receive the call to announce she was the recipient of the Terry scholarship. My daughter told me the email came through the busy hectic schedule of her day. She was chosen as a recipient of the Terry scholarship. She had no time to tell me right away. We celebrated the answer to prayer and now anticipated the ride to see the campus.
During the summer, we were scheduled to meet the Terry Scholar Director, Mrs. Heather Medley. She was a pleasure to meet and quite an asset to the college. She gave such a pleasant and detailed presentation for us. We didn't have many questions to ask at the end of meeting, due to Mrs. Medley thorough explanation of the enrollment process. My daughter was now comfortable about beginning her college experience at Tech. The campus is huge and beautiful. Seeing the Texas Tech Masked Rider on a huge horse, dressed in black clothing really impressed us. We were certain this is where my daughter was intended to be.
Now her freshman year is almost over in a couple of months. She is so happy to be a Raider and I am absolutely proud the Terry Scholarship was available and offered to my daughter. I want to THANK the TERRY FOUNDATION for their financial support and thoughtfulness of students needing financial support.
May you all be blessed,
A freshman parent
by Karen Kuhler
When we heard that our daughter would be able to interview for the Terry Scholarship, we were so proud, yet we knew we had a lot of work to do. We started out by looking up the basic interview questions and doing mock interviews just so she would be prepared and wouldn't be caught off guard by any questions. We went out and invested in a portfolio that she could carry with her into the interview that carried our families financial information that she could refer. After preparing for the interview itself, we took some time as a family to research the Terry Foundation. We felt that if our daughter was blessed enough to receive the scholarship, we would want to know as much as we could about the Terry’s.
Little did we know that when she received the scholarship, our lives would be forever changed. My husband and I do not have that added stress of having to worry about how we will pay for her college, and most importantly, we do not have to worry about her being taken care of while she’s at Texas Tech. We did not know that when she received this scholarship that she would be gaining a Terry family as well. Our daughter has made so many life long friends that are Terry’s that not only care about her well-being but push her to do better academically as well.
The best advice I can give is to just be yourself. I know it sounds simple, but your son/daughter would not have gotten this far if they were not great kids. The interview team wants to get to know them - not interrogate them. They are very gracious and realize that the candidates are nervous. My daughter left feeling like she had blown it because she did not know the answer to a financial question. The team is not grading you on your performance, but trying to get a feel for how you would represent the Terry Foundation and how being a Terry would impact your life in a way that you impact others. Certainly you need to be prepared! At the end of the day, the scholarship is a competitive award; however, the interview team is there to help - not to intimidate. Tell your son/daughter to relax (as much as possible) and believe in themselves.
We were intrigued and thrilled when Ashley, our daughter, told us that the Terry Foundation had deemed her qualified to interview for a substantial scholarship. She had worked hard her first year at a community college and was heading to Texas Tech and then onto Tech Nursing School. Ashley asked me to help her find an appropriate outfit for the interview. We went into our closets and came up with a modest, appropriate business-professional outfit, from head to toe. We noticed how some students could have used some advice---Ashley was thankful to have me help her find the right impression.
We traveled to Austin, booked a room where the interviews were being held and made a mother-daughter weekend of it. We had fun going out to dinner and seeing Austin. Waiting to hear whether Ashley was accepted was, of course, a little nerve-wracking, but, honestly, I would have been so surprised if she hadn't made it----she did!
That was three years ago! My, how time flies! We are so grateful to God for this provision! We told Ashley that God would provide, as He always does and that we would be able to look back in awe, though, at the time, we said that in faith. Graduation is only weeks away and the culmination of Ashley's hard work. We look forward to Graduation and celebrating the fact that the Terry Scholarship enabled our daughter to achieve her dreams.
Karen and Christian Harris
I just want to add a very important thing (this is Ashley's dad) ... She did NOT make the first cut and was put on the standby list. When someone dropped out and couldn't make the interview, Ashley was called and told she could ... she did and was one of the one's chosen. Providence.
by Karen Jennings
We have had 2 children receive Terry Foundation Scholarships. Thank you is not an adequate expression of the gratitude we have for having received this blessing. This foundation is awesome. Unfortunately, we have not been able to participate in the parent activities at TTU. We will try to concisely communicate some of our suggestions to help calm your nerves and curb any fears you might have.
Since all freshmen students have to live in the dorm at TTU, Terry’s stipulation of living in the dorm was unarguable. Our concern arose when we learned they had to stay in the same dorm with each other. Our son had a roommate picked and planned to live in the agriculture dorm. We were concerned about compatibility, but our fears were unwarranted. The dorm was an excellent situation in our opinion. That environment was far better than we could have imagined. According to our son, the Terry students encouraged each other to study and provided a chance to develop real relationships. He felt it was far better than his experience in the ag dorm would have been. His sophomore year, he roomed with two other Terry scholars in a house. He enjoys friends in his major, but also enjoys having more diversity in his friendships with the other Terry kids.
We do have to admit, that although we knew it was a co-ed dorm, we did not expect girls and guys to live on the same floor and right across the hall from each other. His older sister (by 12 years) was most horrified! Because of the “apartment” type living set up, it was no different than an apartment complex except that there was hopefully a bit more oversight and accountability. (At least that is how we appeased ourselves.)
Parents, relax, count your blessings for having had the opportunity to apply for this amazing scholarship, and pray for God’s will for your young adult’s perfect destiny. If he/she does not receive a Terry, it is not the end of the world—another door will open up. If he/she is awarded a scholarship, be sure you and your child realize the great opportunity you have been granted.
Good luck to all.
While not the author of all of the posts, Heather Medley, the Terry Program Director at Texas Tech is the blogger of choice here.