Skip to content
TAMIU’s TRIO and VITA Programs Receive $1.6M in Grants Posted: 11/19/20

TAMIU’s TRIO and VITA Programs Receive $1.6M in Grants



Recently, Texas A&M International University (TAMIU), alongside U.S. Congressman Rep. Henry Cuellar (’82), announced the awarding of two grants totaling well over $1.6 million, aimed at benefiting TAMIU’s Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) and TRIO Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) program.

The grants were awarded by the Department of Education’s Student Support Services STEM Program and the Internal Revenue Service. The TRIO STEM funding supports currently enrolled TAMIU students that are either low-income, first-generation or disabled. The program itself received well over $1.3 million to offer additional services to these students throughout their academic careers.

These services include academic advising and coaching, financial literacy, leadership opportunities, career shadowing, internships, faculty and peer mentoring, participating in the Pathways Summer Program and more.

Through the Pathways Summer Program, students will be able to interact and engage with professionals and employers in a STEM career field. Students who may be considering future careers within this field can also receive guidance and potential career support.

Currently enrolled students can access the TRIO STEM program application at

Likewise, over $340,000 in grant funding was given to the University’s VITA program, which assists low-income Webb County residents by providing them access to free tax return services.

To prepare for the upcoming income tax return season during a pandemic, the University’s VITA coalition is working on contactless tax returns using encrypted software that is expected to be developed this upcoming tax season.

Currently, both the University and United Independent School District operate VITA programs. Funding will primarily be used to access additional resources, as well as recruiting more volunteers.

For more information on the TRIO STEM Program, call 956.326.3340, email or email

For more information on the University’s VITA Coalition, contact Dr. Jack Byham via email at    


Federal funding announced at TAMIU will help support student services, as well as provide income tax assistance for Webb County residents. Pictured, from left to right, is: Congressman Rep. Henry Cuellar; Dr. Jack Byham, assistant professor of Political Science; Dr. John Kilburn, associate vice president for Research and Sponsored Projects; Dr. Barbara Hong, dean, University College; Dr. Gustavo Salazar, TRIO program director; Anne Frey, associate director of Grant Development; Leticia Cruz, director of Student Support Services; and Dr. Pablo Arenaz, University president. 

Related News