The Susan Polgar Institute for Chess Excellence (SPICE) is moving from from Texas Tech University in Lubbock, Texas to Webster University in St. Louis, Missouri in June this year.
Susan Polgar (pictured) confirmed the move, adding that 8 leading members of the Texas Tech chess team will transfer with her to Webster University for the 2012/13 academic year.
The move is further evidence of St. Louis' growing reputation as a center of chess excellence in the United States.
The motivation for the move is to use the greater resources being made available at Webster University to continue to grow the SPICE program.
The Texas Tech chess team are the reigning national collegiate champions and will defend their title in Washington DC from 31 March to 1 April, before moving to St. Louis in June.
Polgar blogged a special thank you to Texas Tech:
A BIG thank you to Texas Tech University
I would like to thank Texas Tech University for their incredible support for chess and SPICE in the past five years. I would also like to thank all the donors and supporters, without whom, SPICE could have never achieved this kind of success.
Chess will continue at Texas Tech and I will do everything possible to make sure that the transition with the new Director / Coach will be super smooth. My job is not finished yet as we still have a National Championship to defend in the end of March.
I am very proud to be a part of the Texas Tech family for the past 5 years. We have made a lot of history together. It has been an incredible experience and I will never forget all the wonderful memories.
As someone who has constantly looking to raise the bar and breaking through barriers in chess for nearly 40 years, I could not pass up the opportunity to work with Webster University on a global level. But it was one of the most difficult decisions because my family and I love Lubbock and Texas Tech.
I want to see Texas Tech continue the winning trend. That is why I made the offer to Texas Tech to maintain the SPICE program. I am even willing to come back to Texas Tech 2-3 times each semester for 2-3 days to help train the remaining players of SPICE and to help Tech recruit additional talents. I hope to have a positive answer soon. The ball is on Tech’s court.
There will be more SPICE programs in other universities in the near future. But my base operation will be in St. Louis. Once again, thank you for everything. This is not the end of an amazing chapter. It is just the beginning of something even more magnificent.
Susan Polgar Institute for Chess Excellence (SPICE)
More details here.