Exceeding Expectations

She has been called the hard-working woman who gets the job done. The sweet, quiet one who rises to the top. To others, she is passionate and kind. It is hard to find someone who encompasses all of those traits. However, recent program manager for undergraduate studies for the College of Agricultural Sciences and Natural Resources, Savannah Chambers does just that.

Raised partially in Del Rio, Texas, and in the small town of Sonora, Texas, Chambers had a laid back and easy- going childhood. With a wonderful and supportive family by her side, she excelled in her high school studies and was involved in many organizations.

Coming from a family of Red Raiders, Chambers had an easy decision when it came time to choose a college. Yet, similar to most incoming students, she had no idea what she wanted to major in. At the beginning of her college career, she thought she wanted to become a math teacher and girl’s basketball coach. However, that changed quickly when she received a few agricultural scholarships and decided to study agricultural communications.

“Originally, I wanted to become a sports broadcast journalist through my agricultural communications degree,” Chambers said. “My junior year, I did an internship with one of the news stations here in Lubbock, and I loved it. It was a lot of fun, and I learned quite a bit. However, I realized that wasn’t the career path I wanted to pursue. I wanted a family, and I wanted to help people.”

With graduation looming, Chambers was on the hunt for a career. She knew she thoroughly loved Texas Tech, CASNR, and everyone who worked there. But, after four years of living in Lubbock, she needed a change of scenery. She received a job with Texas Tech Admissions and worked in the regional office in Dallas. Working as an admissions counselor and recruiter for CASNR for a year, she realized she missed the Hub city and West Texas wind.

Upon coming back to Lubbock, Chambers was offered a position as the program manager for undergraduate studies in CASNR. She immediately began implementing the new technology-based program and put her skills to work.

Cindy Akers, Ph.D., associate dean for CASNR was Chambers’ advisor throughout her college career. Akers was the first person who spoke with her about all of the opportunities agricultural communications had to offer.

Seeing her flourish throughout the years, Akers recited how neat and special it was seeing Chambers come full circle and have the opportunity to work with her daily.

“Savannah has not only shined in her position as the program manager for undergraduate students, but she has also exceeded all of our expectations.”

“She had big shoes to fill, but she has done that flawlessly,” Akers said.

Chambers credits a great amount of her success to Akers.

“Cindy was the first person I met when I came to Texas Tech for freshman orientation, and now she’s my boss,” she said. “I can’t compliment her enough on how great she is. She really cares about her employees. She pushes us to do things that might be out of our comfort zone, but it makes us better.”

Chambers has many responsibilities within her position. She describes herself as the “registrar” for all undergraduate students in CASNR. She conducts all of the degree checks and makes sure students meet all of their requirements to get their degree at the department, college, university and state levels. With over 1,700 students in CASNR, she has many meetings each week with students to make sure they are succeeding with their classes and meeting the requirements they need to graduate. She also helps with any kind of student issues.

“Without Savannah, I really don’t know where I would be today,” said senior agricultural education student Spencer Roberts. “She is always there when I need her and she does a great job helping all the students in CASNR.”

Chambers also works very closely with faculty members and advisors to help create curriculum and make sure they are advising students correctly. She has recently helped establish the new advisory board for CASNR. This board’s goal is to promote excellence and innovation in agriculture and assist the college’s advisors with any strategic planning.

Faculty and students look toward Chambers when they need help or when there are issues. Helping faculty be challenging at times, but she says that is one of the many reasons why she loves her job.

“I really do enjoy helping people,” she said. “Whether it is faculty or students,
just getting to assist them in meeting their goal of graduating or helping them advise a student is rewarding in itself.”

With all of her responsibilities and busy schedule, how does she have time for anything else?

Along with her position at Texas Tech, she balances her family life very well.

Chambers married the love of her life, Brett, in December 2015 in her hometown of Sonora. Spur, the family Labradane dog, is also considered part of the family in the Chambers’ household. With Brett also being Tech alum, they are huge Red Raider fans and attend almost every home football game.

Chambers may seem like a very quiet person to most on first impression, but her work ethic, empathy for others, kind heart, and passion for the college is remarkable.

She expects to be working with Texas Tech for a while.

“I never thought I’d be working here, she said.” “The opportunity to be on such a great team is exciting. The college of agriculture truly values the success of their students and faculty, and that is something I love. I am looking forward to what the future holds.”