|The firt graduating class of the Texas Tech School of Law was in 1967, after using temporary classrooms for their law study. Today's students attend classes in the Law Building.
Opening ceremonies held at Texas Tech law school
1967 Alvin R. Allison, Levelland attorney known as the "Father of the Texas Tech School of Law," told the assembled members of the first law class today that theirs is a "tremendous responsibility."
"The reputation of this school must certainly bear the name of this first class, and as a class you have a tremendous and historic responsibility," said Allison.
The remarks were part of the featured address at the formal opening ceremonies on the new Tech School of Law this morning.
Dr. Grover E. Murray, president of Texas Tech, gave the welcoming address. After Allison's talk, Law School Dean Dr. Richard B. Amandes introduced the faculty members for talks to the students.
Allison paid tribute to Dr. Amandes in his talk, recalling that each obstacle the administration presented to him was met with a confident resolve on the part of the new dean. Problems of faculty recruitment for a law school at a "technological college" and the building of a library were among these major obstacles, said Allison.
"But Dr. Amandes just said we will overcome these problems, and we will find men who are interested in making men into good attorneys'," said Allison.
"Today, I'm walking around pinching myself, wondering if I'm in a dream. Because six years ago, this law school was a dream," said the guest speaker.
Also at Tech today, registration was scheduled to get under way at 1:30 p.m. in Municipal Coliseum for a student body expected to number more than 19,000.
Registration will continue through Friday, according to Registrar Dr. Floyd Boze.
Students were pouring onto the campus today for the first day of registration and the opening of campus dormitories.
This morning's talk was another chapter in Allison's ties with the Tech law school of which the "country lawyer from Levelland" could be called the "father."
Perhaps the most memorable date in the Allison-law school connection was July 13, 1964, when the Texas Commission on Higher Education, since known as the Coordinating Board, gave its approval for a new law school.
The idea for the Tech law school had been in the back of Allison's mind almost from the time he enrolled at Tech in 1926, but the realization of the dream was an uphill struggle.
Allison was named to the Board of Directors in the mid-1950s and began a drive toward the goal, with staunch support from George W. Dupree, a veteran Lubbock attorney. But numerous other attorneys opposed the plan, and two attorney-board members in 1960 openly opposed the law school idea.
But in 1963 the Tech board passed a motion to ask the Commission on Higher Education for permission to start the law school. In February 1964, the commission visited the Tech campus and in April 1964 the commission recommended approval. But this time the Lubbock County Bar was among supporters, as well as the State Bar of Texas, and Dean W. Page Keeton of the University of Texas Law School.
There is an initial enrollment of 72 students on hand for the first semester of operation, with Dean Amandes, 38, at the helm. Amandes was selected after a search over the nation for several months, being recommended by his impressive career.
Tech, building from the ground, is using temporary classrooms but seeking a faculty that is interested in law students first and research service second.