Posted: 3/12/19

TAMIU Leads Laredo’s A&M System Campaign Focused on Future Teachers


Dr. James O'Meara
Dr. James O'Meara  

Texas A&M International University (TAMIU) is part of a Texas A&M University System state-wide campaign focused on encouraging consideration of teaching careers.  The 11 universities of the A&M System produce more fully certified teachers than any other university system in Texas.

The campaign, “We Teach Texas,” affirms the role of teachers and notes “every success story starts in a classroom…become a teacher.”

TAMIU dean of the College of Education, Dr. James O’Meara, said TAMIU is a big part of sustaining a quality teacher pipeline that will continue to fuel South Texas’ success stories.

“We’re delighted to be a part of this campaign. Of Laredo teachers, 80% are TAMIU graduates.  Of new teachers within a 100 mile radius of the campus, 100% are TAMIU graduates and 80% of those teachers that are prepared by TAMIU are employed in schools for more than 10 years.  Once admitted to the College of Education, most students complete their degree in 2-2.5 years.  Eligible teachers can receive federal student loan forgiveness,” Dr. O’Meara noted.

He said that like other A&M campuses in the campaign, the College of Education’s approach to preparing teacher candidates has several points of distinction.

“TAMIU’s Teacher Prep Program has a strong international community engagement component.  Students have traveled to the Dominican Republic, India and other countries to provide vital services  and resources.  These engagement efforts underscore the University’s international mission and the College’s commitment to the United Nations’ mandate to provide inclusive and quality education for all children. Simply put, TAMIU teacher candidates ‘go the distance’ to become champions for educated, inclusive and sustainable societies,” Dr. O’Meara said. 

“In addition to the international engagement opportunities, we aggressively seek out local opportunities to engage students in our community through volunteer initiatives, collaborative programs and service-learning.  Recently, we have entered into an innovative project with The Outlet Shoppes of Laredo that has created the Laredo Education Port/Puerto Educativo,” he continued.

“Here, we invite pre-primary through grade 3 students and their families to participate in English or Spanish educational activities such as creating autobiographies and stories of self, writing biographies of historical figures and cultural innovators, pen-pal activities with children from communities near and far away, and self-portraits in words and images. While the students will take their materials home with them, their creations are displayed electronically at The Outlet Shoppes and online.  We are also working closely with the Mexican Consul to continue to offer collaborative, targeted programs,” O’Meara explained.

“Teachers have a remarkable charge, unlike any other profession.  It is noble and it is good and it changes lives daily.  At the end of the day, every teacher knows that he or she has made a difference.  We have only to look at each of our own lives to know and understand the transformative difference a teacher can make.  TAMIU is committed to recruiting, supporting and retaining teachers and principals to continue to make that cherished difference,” he concluded.

For information about TAMIU’s College of Education programs, please contact TAMIU’s Graduate School at 956.326-3020, email graduateschool@tamiu.eduor visit offices located in the Senator Judith Zaffirini Student Success Center, room 206. 

For more on the University’s story, visit tamiu.edu or its social media accounts on Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn, Twitter and YouTube.

For more about The Texas A&M University System’s “We Teach Texas” Campaign, visit https://weteachtexas.org

Related LInks:

See a Video on "We Teach Texas" featuring TAMIU Grad Lorena Cestou