TAMIU Included in ‘Best Colleges’ by US News & World Report

TAMIU Included in “Best Colleges”
2006 Edition by US News & World Report

Texas A&M International University (TAMIU) is again included in U.S. News and World Reports' annual publication “America's Best Colleges.”

The publication includes TAMIU in its Western Region, Best Universities-Masters, Third Tier. Best Universities-Masters are institutions like TAMIU that provide a full range of undergraduate and graduate programs and a few doctoral programs. The group includes 537 universities around the country.

Along with TAMIU, the Western Region, Best Universities-Masters, Third Tier includes such institutions as California State University-Los Angeles, Our Lady of the Lake University, Hawaii Pacific  University, Texas A&M University-Corpus Christi, University of the Incarnate Word and the University of Texas-San Antonio.

Dr. Dan Jones, TAMIU provost and vice president for academic affairs, said the inclusion is welcome confirmation of the University's continued growth and development and its mission delivery.

“We consider this another harbinger of excellence, an indication that our efforts on behalf of all our students by all of our University faculty and staff is recognized and celebrated.  It's a clear validation that the University changes minds and lives daily, and helps us to become a better community, region, state and nation,”   Dr. Jones said.

“It's especially great news as we are set to welcome our largest entering freshman class in the University's history on Monday, Aug. 28 - the start of the Fall 2006 semester,” he added.

For the 2005 survey period, “America's Best Colleges” notes TAMIU's small class size (50% of classes have 20 or fewer students); its high percentage of full-time faculty (81%); its student faculty ratio (15/1) and its impressive average retention rate for freshman (66%).

Of new interest in the TAMIU inclusion is the University's recognition as being among those few Universities-Masters where graduating students accumulate the least debt (for the TAMIU 2005 survey period, 57% of students have debt, 43% do not).

The publication reviews data on loans taken out by students from colleges, financial institutions and federal, state and local governments.  It does not include parents' loans. For those students who incurred debt, an average cumulative amount borrowed by those students is figured.

Dr. Jones said many universities see debt ranges of anywhere from 60% to over 90% for graduates. He said this is a shared reminder for all  universities of the importance of strong financial aid programs and  philanthropic support.

“We are fortunate that almost 80% of our students qualify for financial aid, but we  remain committed to assisting all students through our keen fund-raising efforts and gracious support by Laredo's private and corporate philanthropy. We are aware of our students' needs daily and work aggressively to meet them.

“We also greatly appreciate any increased measure of support that our State can provide, such as the highly successful Texas Grant Program which will be revisited in the coming Legislative Session and has helped hundreds of TAMIU students,” Jones explained.

U. S. News & World Reports' “America's Best Colleges” is now available for sale at bookstores and on the Internet.

Registration for the Fall Semester is now underway at University offices and online at tamiu.edu   Classes begin Monday, Aug. 28.  Thereafter, late registration, with late fees applied, will continue through Sept. 11.

For additional information, contact the TAMIU Office of Public Relations, Marketing and Information Services at 326.2180, e-mail prmis@tamiu.edu, click on tamiu.edu or visit offices in Sue and Radcliffe Killam Library 268.

Office hours are from 8 a.m. - 5 p.m. Monday-Friday.

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