Austin, Texas (KWKT) — Gov. Rick Perry today announced the creation of the international branch of Texas A&M University at Nazareth - Peace Campus. Gov. Perry made the announcement with the President of Israel, Shimon Peres. The Nazareth campus will be the System's second branch campus in the Middle East.
"Texas A&M and Israel make a good fit, as communities built upon the values of family, commitment and tradition. That's reflected in the goals we've established for this university," Gov. Perry said. "We want to see the Nazareth branch as a means to preserve peace and build understanding between cultures. We want to see students and instructors from a diverse array of nationalities, faiths and backgrounds within its classrooms, each student learning more about the world and what bright possibilities lay ahead for all of us."
Joining Gov. Perry and President Peres for the announcement were Israel's Minister of Education, Shai Piron, Texas A&M University Chancellor John Sharp and other leaders from the TAMU System. The announcement was made at the home of President Peres.
"Today is a day of celebration," Minister Piron said. "Our joy is even greater, knowing that we are establishing a campus of peace located in the city of Nazareth, in the Galilee. The founding of such a renowned institution in an Arab city in the State of Israel sends an important message to Israeli society and the Arab public in Israel. I am certain that this splendid institution will have the power to enhance the vision of peace and equality, and the founding of this institution is a giant step in that direction."
Locating a branch campus of Texas A&M University in Israel will further strengthen the economic and cultural ties Gov. Perry has worked for two decades to foster between Texas and Israel. In developing the new campus, a strong emphasis will be placed on building bridges of peace and understanding through education among the region's vibrant and diverse cultures and religions.
It is expected both the student body and faculty will draw from Arab, Jewish and international populations. Funding for development and construction of the campus will come from private donations. Eventually, students will be able to earn undergraduate, graduate and doctoral degrees in variety of disciplines.