TAMIU Offers New Cooperative Ph.D. Program in Hispanic Studies
Texas A&M International University has teamed up
with three Texas A&M University System universities
to offer the first Ph.D. in Hispanic Studies in the
The Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board approved
the program offering at its quarterly meeting last
TAMIU students may now pursue a cooperative doctoral
degree in Hispanic Studies in Laredo through graduate
courses taught in person and via distance education
by faculty members at TAMIU, Texas A&M University,
Texas A&M University-Kingsville, and Texas A&M
University-Corpus Christi. Courses taught at TAMIU
will also be broadcast to students pursuing the doctoral
degree in the three other System universities.
Upon successful completion of the program, students
will receive a doctoral degree in Hispanic Studies
from Texas A&M University.
TAMIU President Dr. Ray Keck said the new program will
allow Laredoans to pursue the highest degree in education
in an area that is of most interest to the Hispanic
"The program in Hispanic Studies allows Laredoans
to pursue a doctoral level study in the area nearest
to our lives, our history and our culture," Dr.
Keck said, "The program is designed to allow a
student great flexibility in choosing a career path.
It is possible to follow a tradition, literature-and-language
route. But there are also options for bilingual education,
linguistics, history, ethno studies, and the social
sciences that are interesting."
Students will focus on one of four overlapping concentrations:
Hispanic Language and Literature, Hispanic Cultural
Studies, Linguistics and Pedagogy and Bilingual and
Bicultural Studies. Graduates from this program are
expected to be able to help address the complex issues
from the growing socio-economic realities facing the
largest minority group in the United States.
Now a reality, the program will start recruiting immediately
and will begin offering courses in Fall 2004. Students
interested must meet admission requirements for doctoral
study set by Texas A&M University.
The Department of Language and Literature has scheduled
two information sessions for interested students. They
will be held Wednesday, Feb. 11, from 6 p.m. - 7 p.m.
and on Thursday, Feb. 12, from 6 p.m. - 7:30 p.m. in
the Sue and Radcliffe Killam Library, room 420. Faculty
members will also be available to answer questions
about the new Ph.D. program.
Dr. Nasser Momayezi, dean of the TAMIU College of Arts
and Sciences, said Laredoans will no longer have to
leave their hometown to pursue doctoral study.
"This cooperative Ph.D. program will foster a sense
of identity and value, particularly among Hispanic
students, even as such programs make a significant
contribution in addressing the complex issues derived
from the population growth and the socioeconomic realities
that Texas and the nation will face in the 21st Century,"
Dr. Momayezi said.
TAMIU professors who will teach in the program are Dr.
Kati Pletsch de García, Dr. Ezra Engling, Dr.
Bill Nichols and Dr. José Cardona-López,
with Dr. Pletsch de García acting as program
director on campus, Momayezi said.
Dr. Keck, one of the leading forces behind the program's
establishment, said since everyone in education agrees
that cooperative ventures such as this are best, State
approval of the Ph.D. program in Hispanic Studies was
"And who would oppose the notion that South Texas
is the natural place to study Spanish and Hispanic
culture? The hard part was bringing all the parties
together and working through the proposal. But that
is all done," Keck said.
Keck said the program offering is crucial to the community.
"To have doctoral-level research and teaching happening
on this campus, in Hispanic Studies, means that issues
related to the Hispanic world are being studied and
contemplated here in the very most intense and meticulous
and responsible environment," Keck said, "I
think the first cohort will be a stellar group. The
number of outstanding people who have expressed interest
is truly astounding. !Manos a la obra! (Let's get to
For further information, please contact College of Arts and Sciences dean
Nasser Momayezi, at 326-2460, e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org
or visit offices located in Killam Library, room 428.
Prospective students may also contact Dr. Kati Pletsch de García, program
director at TAMIU, at 326-2614, e-mail email@example.com
or visit offices in Killam Library, room 428A.
University office hours are 8 a.m. - 5 p.m. Monday-Friday.
Journalists who need additional information or help with media requests and interviews should contact the Office of Public Affairs and Information Services at firstname.lastname@example.org