Here, you'll be able to trace the impact of this young University and learn about the students, faculty, staff, alumni and community that have made the University's mission real. It's a story 50 years in the making that continues today. Visit regularly as new additions to our story are incorporated.
The Joint Committee’s exploration yields a lengthy feasibility study by both The Texas A&M University System and the USST. The Study indicates that Texas A&I University, Corpus Christi State University and Laredo State University had more to gain than to lose by merging with the larger A&M System.
The USST votes to dissolve the System and clear the way for a merger. Within two weeks, the A&M Board had voted unanimously for the merger. A 21-member committee of Laredo educators and financial leaders again suggested a merger with Laredo Junior College styled along the lines of Lamar University. It was opposed by LJC faculty and administration. President Sayavedra begins looking to the future at a University that was clearly outgrowing its facilities and upward expansion to four-year status was a real possibility.
Dr. Jerry Thompson, longtime faculty member, becomes its first, and only, Piper Professor. Thompson would go on to a 32+ year teaching and research career with the University, penning some 26 books (and counting) and earning numerous awards along the way.
Set to enter its third decade, the University welcomes the initial donation of 200 acres of land in northeast Laredo for a new campus by Radcliffe Killam. The donation would eventually grow to 300 acres. The Laredo Junior College Board of Trustees and LSU sign a joint agreement on the relocation of the campus.
LSU becomes the first campus in the area to use compressed video technology for teaching as part of the Trans-Texas Television Network, a Texas A&M University System initiative.
For the 72nd Legislature, Senate Bills 732 (Zaffirini/Hunter) and 1232 (Zaffirini/Cuellar) empower the A&M Regents to change the name of its institutions and agencies and change LSU’s instruction mandate. Sen. Zaffirini’s amendment to HB 2 authorizes tuition revenue bonds for LSU and HB1 authorizes a new Master Plan for a new LSU campus.
A caravan of Laredoans visit the new campus site on a brisk January morning. Deer and javelina greet them. San Antonio-based architects Ford, Powell and Carson and Jones Kell are named to head design Phase One of the new University campus, estimated to cost $44 million. TAMUS Board of Regents award the construction contract to San Antonio-based Flintco, Inc.
The Finance Committee of The Texas A&M University System Board of Regents approves the University’s name change to Texas A&M International University, effective 1 September, 1993. $19 million is approved for capital campaign and $9.7 million for new programs. Senate Bill 6, authored by State Representative Henry Cuellar and State Senator Judith Zaffirini, and with the crucial support of Lt. Gov. Bob Bullock, establishes a four-year University named Texas A&M International University, effective September, 1995. It authorizes TAMIU to award doctoral degrees with Canada and México and provides tuition revenue bonds for building and renovating facilities.
The Wall Street Journal refers to the University as “the watershed event of 1993 in Laredo…bigger than NAFTA.”
Radcliffe Killam, Dr. Judith Zaffirini, Dr. Leo Sayavedra, Dr. Joaquin Cigarroa and Representative Henry Cuellar are named the Laredoans of the Year by The Laredo Morning Times.
The University signs its first Freshman, Juan José González, a 17-year-old United High School graduate.
A Gift presented in memory of the late Dr. F. M. Canseco, a Laredo physician, supports construction of a building, a nursing arts wing and nursing program. It is the first gift of its kind in the history of the University. Bob Bullock Hall is dedicated, with the Lt. Governor on hand to meet the throngs of well-wishers.
The first “Dusty Run” is scheduled with alums, administrators and students running relay-fashion from the former campus on the West End of Washington to the new campus in Northeast Laredo, a distance of 10 miles. President Dr. Leo Sayavedra gets the run started – and finished.
Fall enrollment climbs 28%, setting a record. The University launches its website, www.tamiu.edu
The University’s third President, Dr. Leo Sayavedra, accepts a post as Deputy Chancellor with The Texas A&M University System. Initial estimates of the economic impact of Texas A&M International University on the local economy top $63 million.
A week-long celebration accompanies the University’s opening of its Phase One of the new TAMIU campus, coinciding with the 25th Anniversary of the University’s founding.
Senator Judith Zaffirini honors Laredoans who played leadership and supportive roles that helped nurture the University at a special Awards Luncheon. Dubbed “A Tribute to Texas Trailblazers: Their Quest for a Four-Year University,” it takes place in the Sue and Radcliffe Killam Library Great Room. Some 60 Laredoans, alongside former University presidents 1969-1995 (Presidents Cowart, Pacheco and Sayavedra) and members of the Texas Legislature, including Sen. Wayne Connally, Rep. Honore Ligarde, Sen. John Traeger, Rep. Billy Hall, Sen. Zaffirini and Rep. Henry Cuellar, are recognized.
19 TAMIU Nursing students who successfully completed course work in the Spring and Summer of 1995 received over $12,000 in tuition and fee reimbursement thanks to funding support from the Lamar Bruni Vergara Trust.
Texas A&M International University stake their space in cyberspace with the advent of a pilot program that provides over 700 students with electronic mail (email).
Approximately $5 million in gifts and pledges to TAMIU to advance its continued growth and development are received. Gifts are received from Transportation Services, Inc., the Dr. F. M. Canseco Family, Lamar Bruni Vergara Trust, CP&L, Laredo Manufacturers Association, the Brand and Kawas Families, Ford Motor Company, Anzon Division, Cooks Specialty Additives, Dr. Jose and Mrs. Garcia, Pan American Express, Inc. and Time-Warner.
Seeking to memorialize the life of a much-loved Laredo educator, family and colleagues of the late Luz Maria Davila announced the establishment of the Luz Maria Davila Endowment Scholarship Fund at TAMIU.
Interim President José García and Dean Khosrow Fatemi announce TAMIU’s first Endowed Chair, the College of Business Administration's Distinguished Professor of International Trade Studies in the Western Hemisphere, is funded by a $1.5 million grant. Radcliffe and Sue Killam announce a $2 million pledge toward construction of the Center for the Study of Western Hemispheric Trade.
The Texas Board of Nurse Examiners awards full accreditation status to TAMIU’s School of Nursing.
The Texas A&M University System Board of Regents name Dr. J. Charles Jennett, provost and vice president for academic affairs at Clemson University in South Carolina, the position as fourth president of Texas A&M International University.
A gift of a brighter future for Laredo and South Texas students of TAMIU was provided with the announcement of a $100,000 Endowed Scholarship Gift from the Daybreak Rotary Club in the Great Room of the Sue and Radcliffe Killam Library. An Advanced Placement Summer Institute is offered to local and area educators for the first time.
157 candidates for graduation participate in Summer Commencement Exercises at TAMIU’s South Plaza.
TAMIU BA, Political Science ’96 graduate Christina Arellano is featured in a Texas A&M University System video that shares her and her father's message of succeeding through higher education.
The Radcliffe Killam Distinguished Professorship of International Trade Studies in the Western Hemisphere is announced in The Great Room of the Sue and Radcliffe Killam Library by President J. Charles Jennett. "Radcliffe Killam and the Killam family name are synonymous with support of higher education in South Texas and beyond. Mr. Killam and his wife, Sue Spivey Killam, helped fulfill our community's long-cherished dream of a campus for Texas A&M International University with their generous gift of 300 acres of prime land in northeast Laredo for Texas' newest four-year University,” Dr. Jennett says.
A campus committee looks at six possible campus mascots. By student majority vote, the Dustdevil is chosen over The Thunder, Ocelots and Sun Blazers.
Student enrollment at TAMIU climbs 7% for the Fall 1996 semester to 2,682.
Dr. J. Charles Jennett, an engineer and former Clemson University administrator, is inaugurated as the University’s fourth President. He would quickly add intercollegiate athletics to the University’s new home.
TAMIU’s new president, Dr. J. Charles Jennett, is inaugurated in two-day ceremonies. The inauguration theme, “Tradition and Transformation: Leadership for the 21st Century" is borne throughout a traditional academic inauguration, groundbreaking activities for new student housing on campus, an alumni homecoming, a lecture by Pulitzer Prize co-winner Andres Oppenheimer, a golf tournament, an international festival and a special Inauguration Dinner and Dance.
A Legislative Forum for the discussion of priorities and funding for TAMIU is held upon request of State Senator Dr. Judith Zaffirini and includes members of the Webb County legislative delegation, State Representatives Henry Cuellar and Tracy King, the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board, and Dr. Joaquin Cigarroa.
Students pass a referendum that will assist in the construction of TAMIU’s first Student Center. President Jennett lauds the students’ vision and noted, “this is an important opportunity for present and future students.” A $5 million donation towards the construction was previously received from Belia Benavides.
For the first time, the Board of Regents of The Texas A&M University System meets at TAMIU. The nine-member Board of Regents governs the A&M System and is appointed by the Governor and confirmed by the Texas Senate.
Spring 1997 TAMIU enrollment is up almost 7 percent over last Spring. Headcount at Texas' newest four-year University is 2,630, up from the previous Spring's 2,464. Thirty-six TAMIU Nursing students receive over $19,900 in tuition and fee reimbursement from the Lamar Bruni Vergara Trust.
For the first time, outstanding faculty member from each of TAMIU’s four Colleges are recognized with a College Scholar of the Year award. The first recipients are Dr. Cecilia Garza, Assistant Professor of Sociology, College of Arts and Humanities; Dr. Balasundram Maniam, Associate Professor of Finance, College of Business Administration; Dr. Linda Medearis, Associate Professor of Early Childhood Education, College of Education and Dr. Michael Roth, Assistant Professor of Physics, College of Science and Technology.
The skyline at TAMIU grows by over 60 percent with the formal dedication ceremonies for Phase II of the campus, including four new buildings. Phase II includes Dr. F. M. Canseco Hall, Anthony J. and Georgia A. Pellegrino Hall, the Kinesiology-Convocation building and the University’s Physical Plant building.
Central Power and Light Co. provides TAMIU with a $42,000 incentive in ceremonies held in the Great Room of the Sue and Radcliffe Killam Library. The incentive recognized the University's participation in a high-efficiency energy program providing substantial energy savings for the University.
TAMIU names Dr. Susan Scoville Baker as Director of the Dr. F. M. Canseco School of Nursing. Dr. J. Charles Jennett, University president, said the University looked forward to Dr. Baker's leadership for the growing program. "Dr. Baker's appointment comes at a critical time in the growth of this dynamic program. We anticipate adding a Master’s of Science in Nursing and Dr. Baker will help lead these important new initiatives," he said. A visiting team of evaluators from the National League for Nursing Accreditation Commission recommends that the Canseco School of Nursing receive the organization's maximum five-year Initial Accreditation.
Preliminary reports from Austin that the Texas Legislature has targeted over $35 million for TAMIU’s completion, finds University officials elated with the news. President Jennett notes, "This is a clear testament to the bold and visionary leadership demonstrated by our legislative leaders Senator Zaffirini and Representative Cuellar. This took a team effort including the work of Representative Tracey King, the legislative staff, the University’s faculty and staff and, of course, the citizens of Laredo," Jennett said.
The opportunity to offer a permanent tribute at TAMIU is made possible with the launch of the “Walk of Fame” at the sound end of the native stone acequia fountain that graces the University’s core plaza. Bricks and stones are available for purchase and support student scholarships and University programs.
The latest indicator of TAMIU’s phenomenal growth is the construction of new student apartments on the northeast horizon. Construction of the $5.1 million complex known as University Village is ahead of schedule and one-bedroom units are already sold out. The Village features free internet service and a computer lab.
TAMIU Assistant Professor of Physics Dr. Michael Roth is named the first recipient of the University Scholar of the Year Award in Spring Commencement ceremonies held at the University.
Family members Manuel Guerra, former American Consul at Nuevo Laredo, and his daughters, Lisa Stevens, Katherine McCraw and Christina Gutierrez announce a perpetual endowment scholarship at TAMIU to cherish the memory of the late Adela Guerra, who died in 1995.
For the first time, TAMIU’s 1997-1998 Catalog is available on-line through the University’s Home Page.
Thirty TAMIU students help pilot a new course designed to help first-time University students find the keys to academic and career success within themselves. "Issues in Psychology: University Survival and Success," PSYC 1335-101, is led by Dr. Stephen Brown, A&M International Dean of Student Affairs. It is part of the University's "Total Freshman Year Experience Plan."
The A.R. Sanchez, Sr. Distinguished Lecture Series, funded by a trust established by A. R. Sanchez Jr., is established to honor the late A. R. Sanchez, Sr., founder of International Bancshares Corporation, successful oil and gas producer and long-time supporter of higher education. The inaugural lecture, "Higher Education in the 21st Century," features two nationally known scholars and university administrators, Dr. William Cunningham, Chancellor of The University of Texas System, and Dr. Barry Thompson, Chancellor of The Texas A&M University System.
Three TAMIU students, Rosa M. Ramos, Doria E. Hicks and Elsa G. Ayala, receive Trailblazer scholarships from State Senator Dr. Judith Zaffirini in ceremonies held in the in the Sue and Radcliffe Killam Library. The Trailblazer Scholarships recognize the leadership and initiative shown by more than 60 Laredoans who helped to champion the development of the four-year University in Laredo.
TAMIU Spring 1997 enrollment is up 6.08% to 2,840, from 2,677 the previous Fall. The enrollment percentage increase is the highest among all Texas universities according to the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board.
An Open House and ribbon-cutting signals the formal addition of apartment-style student housing to the growing TAMIU campus. President Jennett notes that on-campus student housing was pivotal to the University's continued growth and development and accomplished through a privatized partnership with American Campus Lifestyles, of Austin.
The Third Annual TAMIU "Dusty Fun Run and Walk, " featuring competitive 5K and 10K Runs, a non-competitive 5K Fun Walk and 1 Mile Children's Walk is held to benefit student scholarships and alumni activities. It is part of the University’s week-long Homecoming Celebration co-hosted by the University’s Alumni Association.
The sounds of music are added to TAMIU course offerings with the development of a University band and chorale club announced Dr. Ray Keck, Chair of the Department of English, Spanish and Fine Arts of the College of Arts and Humanities.
NBC Bank of Laredo announces a $53,000 gift supporting student scholarships in ceremonies held in the Great Room of the Sue and Radcliffe Killam Library. There are 143 student candidates for undergraduate or graduate degrees in Fall Commencement exercises held on campus featuring a Commencement Address by District Judge of the 341st Judicial District, Judge Elma Salinas Ender.
The holidays are welcomed with a tree-lighting ceremony in the Great Room. Making its campus debut performance was the TAMIU Band, directed by Elmo Lopez, Sr. and piano featuring Dr. Ray Keck. President Jennett, accompanied by “Dusty,” the University mascot, lit the tree decorated with maroon and silver ornaments.