Defense Nominee Has Texas Ties

HOUSTON (AP) - As president of Texas A&M, Robert Gates has
focused on increasing diversity on the sprawling and mostly white

The former CIA director was nominated today to replace Donald
Rumsfeld as Defense Secretary.

Over the past three years, freshmen enrollment has increased by
77-percent for black students at the main College Station campus.

It was 59 percent for Hispanic students and 71 percent for
Asian-American students.

Since 2002, enrollment of graduate black students has gone up 86
percent, while it's increased 48 percent for Hispanics.

A&M sociology professor Rogelio Saenz credits Gates with providing funding to set up scholarships for first-generation college students and diversifying the graduate student population.

But Saenz says A-and-M still has much work to do in becoming a
diverse campus.

He says the school continues to be an "extremely white

About 82 percent of A&M's student population is white.