Eggplant (S. melangena) grafted to silver-leaf nightshade (S. elaeagnifolium) as a measure to combat root-borne fungal disease. Between 100 and 200 grafted plants will be trialed in the field alongside regular eggplant to test yield differences. (MSIS student Shaun Payne)
Fast Growth of Department Created a Need...
During the next five years, all of the teacher training colleges worked together and tremendous improvements in facilities and quality of instructional programs were made. Southwest Texas Agriculture Department increased to seven members. The Agriculture faculty began to take leaves of absences to obtain Doctoral Degrees on a rotation plan. Gregg was the first to go, followed by Buie, Cranek, and Young. Ed Smith from Georgia was added in Agriculture Mechanics. Other faculty members were: Coy Neely in Dairy Science, Joe Williams in Animal Science, Harold Phillips in Poultry. He was followed by Gerald Champagne. In September 1952 Dr. James Elliot, who had just completed a Ph.D. at Cornell University, joined the staff. He organized and developed an outstanding Mechanics program. The fast growth of the department created a need for instructors and laboratory assistants. Some of these were: Noah Thompson, Burlen Horton, John Arnn, Kenneth Hughes, Quin Schlorts, John Henlee, Telvey Robbins, and Bill Roberds. During the 1950's and 1960's the department had other outstanding faculty members. They were: John Moore, Spencer Norwood, Tilmon Moore, Harvey Farris, Llano Barron, and Roy Biffington. Other faculty members, who came later and have brought distinction to the department and University with hard work and long hours are: Dr. Ray Helm, Dr. Glen Rydl, Dr. Mike Abel, and Dr. Lon Shell.
About 1954, a Master Degree was developed and became second only to the Masters Degree in Education in number awarded annually. However, Dr. Flowers, in trying to appease the State Commission on Higher Education in 1963, agreed to phase out the Masters Degree in Agriculture, which took six or seven years. In 1975-76, a Masters Degree program was initiated under the leadership of Dr. Roy Miller, Jr. This is going nicely and serving the people in central Texas.