2016 Annual Report - page 10

Student Volunteers serve Global
Medical Brigades in Nicaragua
With heavy backpacks and driven by a shared desire to
help the global community, 20 TAMIU students traveled to the
interior of Nicaragua to volunteer.
The students volunteered with Global Medical Brigades,
an international non-profit organization that empowers
communities to meet their health and economic goals through
university volunteers and local teams.
During their stay in Matagalpa, Nicaragua,TAMIU students
joined Global Brigades staff in transforming a local elementary
school into a fully functioning mobile clinic, complete with
consultation rooms and a pharmacy. Student volunteers also
helped develop water systems impacting community member
Nicaragua’s poverty level is at an all-time high, leaving
citizens with insufficient access to healthcare and medical
attention, said Rebekah Kawas, Global Medical Brigades Laredo
Chapter president.
“TAMIU students, through months of preparation and
commitment, were able to impact an indigenous community
while learning about global awareness and community service.
Laredo’s chapter of Global Medical Brigades has raised over
$59,000 since its inception in 2014,” Kawas said.
Texas Academy Graduates
First Class, Makes History at TAMIU
Sometimes, a few steps can
secure the future…and ensure
history. The inaugural graduates
of the Texas A&M International
University Texas Academy of
International and STEM Studies
did just that when 40 graduates
crossed the Center for the Fine and Performing Arts’ Recital
Hall stage.
Cheering the graduates on were two community leaders
who helped make their steps probable and possible: State
Senator Judith Zaffirini and Frank Staggs, retired educator.
Senator Zaffirini authored the Academy’s enabling
legislation, approved by the 79th Texas Legislature. Staggs
has provided a generous donation supporting the Academy
initiative. Partner The University of Texas Health Science
Center of San Antonio’s (UTHSCSA), Laredo campus, also
helps fund the Academy.
The Texas Academy provides academically motivated
high school juniors and seniors with a challenging University-
level curriculum. It welcomed its first cohort in 2014.
Students can earn up to two years of University credit
towards a Bachelor’s degree, while also earning their high
school diploma.
They receive free tuition, fees and books, and are able
to pursue University degrees in any area while exploring
research and collaborative educational opportunities with
Academy partners.
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