Texas Tech University

Strickling Family Gift Will Impact Every Texas Tech College of Education Student

November 27, 2023

Roxane and Ben Strickling have made a gift to the College of Education, which will provide a $1,000 scholarship to every senior in the college.

Today, Texas Tech University's College of Education announced the establishment of the Strickling Senior Leaders, a scholarship program made possible through the generosity of Roxane and Ben Strickling.

The Strickling Senior Leaders program will provide a $1,000 scholarship to every senior in the College of Education. With roughly 277 seniors graduating from the college each year, this gift will have the largest scholarship impact made by an individual on an annual basis in Texas Tech history.

“By the time our students walk across the stage at graduation, they have been through an extremely rigorous program to prepare them to be the best possible educators,” said Jesse Perez Mendez, dean of the College of Education. “This incredible gift from the Stricklings will be a huge benefit to these educators as they prepare to go out into the world and impact the students who are the future of our state and nation. We are humbled by their generosity.”

During their senior year, students in the College of Education are enrolled in TechTeach. The TechTeach initiative requires students to spend the entire year as a teacher candidate in the classroom working with mentor teachers and their professors to gain hands-on experience. This yearlong residency equips students with the knowledge, skills and confidence to run their own classroom successfully after graduation.

"Having the support of scholarships helps me to more effectively serve my students,” said Braeley Krautsch, a senior teacher candidate in the College of Education. “I love doing fun activities with my students and strive to create a classroom that is a place they love to be. Scholarship funding allows me to put more resources into my classroom."

The Stricklings are loyal Texas Tech alumni who have supported the university through philanthropy since 1984. Roxane graduated with her bachelor's degree in elementary education and taught kindergarten and second grade in Midland ISD. She followed in the footsteps of her mother Frances Ratliff, who also graduated from Texas Tech and taught junior high in Midland ISD.

“Teaching and attending Texas Tech are legacies in our family,” Roxane said. "We are thrilled about the opportunity to help future teachers get a high-quality education, especially at a university that is so near and dear to our hearts.”

Ben graduated with a bachelor's degree in petroleum engineering in 1979 and is the chairman of the board of Blue Arrow Operating. Ben has been in the oil and gas industry for over 40 years and was inducted into the Edward E. Whitacre Jr. College of Engineering Petroleum Engineering Academy in 2015. He also serves on the Texas Tech University System Foundation Board. Roxane and Ben reside in Midland.  

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