Skip to main content

Schob Nature Preserve

<Tribute by Roger Sheridan, executor of the Schob estate>

Dr. Schob was born in Chicago, Illinois in 1941. He received his Bachelor of Arts, Master of Arts and Ph.D. from the University of Illinois.

Dr. Schob dedicated twenty-six years of his life teaching history at Texas A & M University. In addition to teaching here at A&M, he spent his summers (starting in 1971) teaching on the TEXAS CLIPPER TAMU in Galveston. David was the Director of the Summer School Sea Program during his last seven years of sailing on the Clipper. Some of his fondest teaching memories were made during the summers he spent aboard the Texas Clipper.

David truly loved to teach history. His classes were always large. If you were a student in his class you felt as if you were “living the history.” A truly remarkable historian who made learning history something you wanted to do. Dr. Schob received numerous honors and awards as a result of his teaching. One such award that was extra special to David was “Best professor for teaching American history and professor to whom students best relate in terms of learning experience.” 

Dr. Schob retired early from his love of teaching at Texas A&M in 1996 in order to devote his time to the care of his beloved mother.

Dr. Schob died on February 12, 2007 from health complications relating to Alzheimer’s disease.


The Gift

In his will of 2009, Dr. Schob bequeathed his home and residential lot of 7.44 acres at 906 Ashburn Avenue in College Station to Texas A&M University. The bequest stipulated that the property was to be used as a university student residence and neighborhood park. The residence was to be preferentially available to a disable U.S. service man or woman attending Texas A&M University. The land was to be made available as a public park for the local College Hills neighborhood. The disposition of the parkland portion of the property was placed under the joint jurisdiction of the departments of Landscape Architecture and Urban Planning in the College of Architecture and Recreation, Park and Tourism Sciences in the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences.

The parkland, designated as the Dr. David E. Schob Nature Preserve has as its purpose, the creation, maintenance, preservation and management of the property as public parkland and nature conservation area. As a land grant institution, Texas A&M University is charged with teaching, research and outreach activities to serve the citizens of Texas. Texas A&M University, through its expertise in landscape architecture, urban planning, park design, recreational planning and management, plant and animal ecology, and stormwater management, among others, will guide the design, development, and future use and management of the site as a means of satisfying these institutional responsibilities.


The Process

2009.10 Dr. Michael Murphy led a proposal with Drs. Scott Shafer and Ming-Han Li for a cross disciplinary collaboration to assist in the development.
2011 spring Drs. Michael Murphy and Scott Shafer used the Schob site for LAND 321 and RPTS 402 class project. Several designs were proposed.
2011.02 The Schob oversight board was formed.
2011 fall Retired Dr. Michael Murphy was hired as the landscape architect to design the preserve.
2012.04 President Bowen Loftin  the concept design.
2012.06 Construction began.
2013 fall Schob Scholars Program began. Dr. Ming-Han Li was named the LAUP Senior Schob Scholar, effective ‘14. Dr. Scott Shafer was named the RPTS Senior Schob Scholar, effective fall ‘13.
2014.10.25 Opening ceremony was held.
2014 fall LAUP Schob Mini-grant Program announced the call for proposals.
2015.01 Four proposals were chosen for mini-grant.
2015.10 Three proposals were chosen for second year mini-grant.
2016.10 New storage/office building was installed.
2016.10 Three proposals were chosen for third year mini-grant.

David Schob

"Donated nature preserve serves university as 'living' classroom" story featured in archone e-newsletter (November 4, 2014)