Posted: 5/04/23

TAMIU Spring Commencement Exercises Held at Sames Auto Arena


Imelda Navarro
Imelda Navarro  

Nearly 900 candidates for graduation from Texas A&M International University (TAMIU) participated in two Spring Commencement exercises at the Sames Auto Arena at 11 a.m. and 4 p.m. on Wednesday, May 10, 2023.

The 11 a.m. ceremony was for candidates for undergraduate and graduate degrees from the A.R. Sanchez, Jr. School of Business, the College of Education, and the College of Nursing and Health Sciences.

The 4 p.m. ceremony was for candidates for undergraduate and graduate degrees from the College of Arts and Sciences and University College.

Commencement Speaker for both ceremonies was Imelda Navarro, president of Retail Banking for International Bank of Commerce’s (IBC) sales and operations for 167 branches in Texas and Oklahoma.

Navarro's success is the result of extraordinary dedication. She has committed her entire 48-year career to service within the IBC family. Her leadership experience grew from unheralded yet inspirational origins. She began working at IBC at age 16 as a file clerk in conjunction with a vocational program offered through Laredo's J.W. Nixon High School. After completing the program, she continued working for IBC on a part-time basis while earning her Bachelor of Business Administration with a major in Accounting at then-Laredo State University, now TAMIU.

After graduating from college, she continued to gain knowledge about IBC's accounting and operations divisions, and learned all facets of personal and commercial banking. Over the next two decades, with a solid work ethic and commitment to advancement, Navarro earned respect in the male-dominated banking business and firmly established herself as an "up-and-comer" in the financial industry.

Her career trajectory has paralleled the dramatic growth of IBC. Her responsibilities evolved to include financial accounting, human resources, and bank operations. In 2017, Navarro, then a 43-year veteran of IBC Bank-Laredo, was promoted to become the first woman president in the bank's history. She has served her community extensively in various capacities including the State of Texas and International non-profit and professional organizations and service as President of the TAMIU Alumni Association, Laredo Business Professional Women's Association, Financial Women International, and the Domestic Violence Coalition, among others.

In 2005, Hispanic Business Magazine named her one of its outstanding women leaders and later that same year, recognized her as one of the 100 most influential Hispanic women in the country. In 2009, she was named one of the Top 25 Hispanic women in the United States. Other recognitions have included selection as a Mustang Legend from J. W. Nixon High School, Tejano Achiever by the LULAC Council, and in 2015, Dama De Oro by Las Damas de la Cultura de Oro.

Texas Governor Greg Abbott appointed her to the Governor's Commission for Women. The Commission serves as a liaison between Texas women and government agencies, along with private organizations addressing women's needs.

Student Responses were provided by Carmen González, representing the College of Nursing and Health Sciences at the 11 a.m. Ceremony, and Ashley Jannett Hernández, representing the College of Arts and Sciences, for the second Ceremony at 4 p.m.

González attended TAMIU’s Julieta & Frank Staggs Academy of International and STEM Studies, concluding her last two years and graduating from high school while completing prerequisites for the TAMIU Nursing program in 2021. She earned a Bachelor of Science in Nursing, graduating Magna Cum Laude.

Hernández graduated from Lyndon B. Johnson High School in 2020. She completed her Bachelor of Arts and Sciences with a major in English and Secondary Certification in two years and four months and graduated Magna Cum Laude.

Distinguished Student Scholars and their respective Colleges or Schools were:

A.R. Sanchez, Jr. School of Business: Karelly Tamez, earning a Bachelor of Business Administration with a Concentration in Marketing, graduating Summa Cum Laude.

University College: Manuel Arturo Escobedo, earning a Bachelor of Arts in Multidisciplinary Studies, graduating Cum Laude.

Spring Commencement ceremonies were also livestreamed and remain available online:

First Ceremony: https://go.tamiu.edu/grad-am

Second Ceremony: https://go.tamiu.edu/grad-pm

The Spring 2023 Commencement Program is available online at go.tamiu.edu/beyond.

Graduates, friends, families, and loved ones can also share Commencement photos on social media using the hashtag, #TAMIUGrad, or tagging the University’s social media account @txamiu. Before and during the Commencement ceremonies, University-affiliated social media accounts showcased social media posts and photos using the official hashtag.

Graduates and their families can also share a special message and photo as part of the University’s popular ‘Congrats Grads’ campaign. Individuals submit their photos and messages at https://go.tamiu.edu/congratsgrads. It is recommended that graduates and friends follow and like social media accounts on Facebook (www.facebook.com/txamiu), Twitter (www.twitter.com/txamiu), and Instagram (www.instagram.com/txamiu) to view featured congratulatory Commencement posts.

Additional information is available from TAMIU’s dedicated Commencement website at: https://www.tamiu.edu/commencement/, or through the Office of the Registrar, registrar@tamiu.edu or 956.326.2250.

Diplomas and transcripts will be available for Spring 2023 graduates beginning Friday, May 26, 2023.

Registration for Summer sessions and Fall 2023 at TAMIU is currently underway.

To learn more about TAMIU’s Registration processes, visit the dedicated Registration Hub at https://go.tamiu.edu/registration .