TAMIU, LCC Receive Fed Ed Grant of $3.2 Million

Title V $3.25 Million Grant Award to
LCC-TAMIU Teacher Prep Initiative

A new Title V grant of $3.25 million from the United States Department of Education will help to prepare tomorrow's teachers through a joint initiative between Texas A&M International University's College of Education and Laredo Community College.

The award, presented under the Strengthening Institutions-Hispanic Serving Institutions Program, will be awarded in yearly amounts of $650,000 throughout a five-year period. It was announced at a Wednesday  press conference at LCC.

LCC president Dr. Ramon Dovalina said the initiative is a testament to Laredo' s higher education leadership working together to address critical teacher shortages in South Texas.

"Nothing is more gratifying than to witness two individual institutions of higher education joining forces to become one - a champion in the crusade to produce more qualified teachers for America's classrooms," Dr. Dovalina said.

TAMIU president Dr. Ray Keck, concurred, noting that such program collaborations are vital to the mission of both institutions.

"This is our charge:  to provide access and to help all students benefit from higher education.  We are energized and excited about this remarkable opportunity to work together  to prepare new teachers for a new tomorrow.  It's clearly a challenge, but one that we feel we can both surmount by combining our skills, resources and commitment," Dr. Keck said.

The program, to be known as "Hispanic Student Success Initiative:  Preparing Tomorrow's Teachers Today," targets providing support to LCC freshman and sophomore students pursuing a teaching career with technological and pedagogical support focused on preparing them for entry and transfer into TAMIU's College of Education.

Pivotal is a focus on improved writing  proficiency. Students selected for the program will be provided with writing software and laptop computers to expedite writing tasks.

Critical program elements include increasing the number of students admitted into TAMIU's College of Education; strengthening of the advisement system and retention effort and development of a seamless transfer system between LCC and TAMIU.

Both Dr. Dovalina and Dr. Keck praised the joint efforts of LCC and TAMIU staff in preparing the competitive grant for consideration.  They also noted  the initiative is the latest example of the two working together to forge a joint effort benefiting the entire community. 

The program is expected to begin later this Spring and will be coordinated by Dr. Miroslava Vargas,  TAMIU associate professor of education.  Coordinating efforts at LCC will be Dr. Nora Garza, dean of Arts & Sciences.

For additional information, please contact the office of the TAMIU dean of the College of Education at 326.2420 or the office of the LCC dean of Arts and Sciences at 721.5823 or 721.5337.

Journalists who need additional information or help with media requests and interviews should contact the Office of Public Relations, Marketing and Information Services at prmis@tamiu.edu