The West Texan: Wellington’s Skyrockets—A Model of Alumni Support

The+West+Texan%3A+Wellingtons+Skyrockets%E2%80%94A+Model+of+Alumni+Support

West Texas A&M University alumni are helping young people in one Panhandle town rocket to success.

WestTexan-Spring2022-COVER-FINALPhoto: This article originally appeared in the Spring ’22 issue of The West Texan. Click the image to read the entire issue.

The Wellington area’s alumni chapter, the West Texas Skyrockets, formed in 2016 and have since helped finance the educational dreams of about 40 Wellington High School graduates who chose to attend WT.

“We realized that we had several WT alumni living here in Wellington and more and more Wellington High School graduates who wanted to attend WT,” said Margret Wood ’72, chapter vice-president. “We really love WT and care about it and want to see more of our kids go there. And since starting the chapter, we really have seen more decide to to WT. Last year, both the valedictorian and salutatorian decided to go, which is wonderful.”

In its history, the Skyrockets chapter has distributed $21,500 in scholarships.

It’s a grassroots effort to raise those funds. Chapter members regularly host basketball tournaments, golf scrambles, daddy-daughter and mother-son dances—even a pet jamboree.

In 2022, eight WHS graduates were awarded scholarships at the chapter’s annual banquet: Marlene Jantes, Kyla Kane, Creighton Killian, Luis Moreno-Cerda, Willy Olvera, Isabella Rodriguez, Desyre Sanchez and Dylan Skelton.

Ultimately, the Skyrockets envision a Wellington Alumni Chapter Scholarship Endowment to provide permanent and sustainable funding for student scholarships. When a scholarship endowment is created, the funds are invested and a portion of the income from the investment is used to support annual scholarships.

The Skyrockets chapter welcomes members from Wellington, Quail and Dodson. Membership is $6 per month or $70 per year; proceeds support the Wellington chapter and provide members with full WT Alumni Association benefits.

“The Wellington area’s alumni chapter is a stand out in my mind because they do a great job at engaging WT alumni in a variety of community and fundraising events,” said Lesly Bosch Annen, assistant vice president for leadership gifts and development. “That helps them retain members and recruit future Buffs. They are an amazing asset.”

Any regional town can form its own chapter, Wood said.

“You just have to get together and establish a goal,” she said. “What’s especially great in a small town is that the chapter is able to create some fun activities for people to enjoy and let them support a great cause.”

For more on the chapter, visit facebook.com/westtexaskyrockets .

 

Photo: WT Alumni Association Executive Director Ronnie Hall, left, and WT President Walter V. Wendler, right, congratulate winners of the West Texas Skyrockets’ annual scholarships.

close

Oh hi there 👋
It’s nice to meet you.

Sign up to receive awesome content in your inbox, every week.

We don’t spam! Read our privacy policy for more info.