One of the newest programs at NT
was the Texas Academy of Math and
Sciences (TAMS). TAMS was a resi-
dential early admissions program for
high school juniors who accelerated in
math and science. Through this tuition-
free program created by the Texas Leg-
islature and sanctioned by the Texas
Education Agency, high school juniors
took university courses for which they
received college credit. They were also
granted high school diplomas through
TAMS. After completing the TAMS
program, these students had completed
two years of college work.
TAMS was started in the fall of 1987,
and a year later there was already a total
enrollment of 163 students, 73 of which
were returning for their second year.
These students were the top three per-
cent of the high school sophomores in
the state, scoring 1200 on the SAT.
TAMS was created due to the results
of several studies, one being an 18-na-
tion study in which American students
scored below average, ranking only
above four other nations. In another
Story by DeLinda Spain
study of the top 10 percent of 18-year
olds in 10 countries, America ranked last
in calculus, algebra and other mathemat-
ical areas. Also, critical shortages were
forecast for all areas of science and engi-
neering in Texas as well as nationwide.
TAMS was designed to nurture and en-
courage students to continue in these
The TAMS students were housed on
the second and third floors of McCon-
nell Hall, located near the center of
campus. A hall director, assistant hall
director and resident assistants lived on
the floor with the students at a ratio of
about 20-to-1. These staff members
were trained in cooperation with the
university housing office to provide the
necessary supervision and counseling.
Live-in staff members were available 24
hours a day and were especially sensitive
to the personal problems and needs of
The graduating charter class was to be
part of the centralized graduation cere-
mony of NT. A separate graduation
ceremony was also to be held, at which
Speaker of the House Gib Lewis was
scheduled to speak.
Dr. Thomas Brady, director of the
program, hoped to recruit 100 new
TAMS students each year. Brady hoped
TAMS would become a prestigious pro-
gram for students to participate in and
that perhaps these students would con-
tinue their college educations at NT.
Travis Williams, a TAMS student, works on his geography skills in the TAMS
computer lab. The lab was located in the McConnell Hall lobby. Photo by Daniel
Due to a growing shortage of campus hous-
ing, an addition to McConnell Hall was be-
gun in fall 1989. The TAMS students lived on
the second and third floor of McConnell Hall.
Photo by Daniel Gibson
College Of Music
University of North Texas. The Aerie, Yearbook of University of North Texas, 1990. Denton, Texas. UNT Digital Library. http://digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth61055/. Accessed February 12, 2016.