South Texas College Is a Tremendous Force That Makes Us Better

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By Roberto Hugo Gonzalez

As originally published by Texas Border Business newsprint edition June 2019

The creation of a community college was not an easy task. It took many well-intentioned, passionate leaders to get it started, not done, started. It was founded in 1993 with very limited resources and program offerings for the first students. 

In this issue, Texas Border Business is featuring Mario Reyna, STC Dean of Business, Public Safety, and Technology. Dean Reyna has been part of this organization for almost 23 years. He brought to the table his professionalism and his unique talent to help and inspire people inside the college and outside in the community. 

Dean Reyna says that South Texas College has played a significant role in the growth of the Rio Grande Valley. “I know we’re not the only reason why things are going well. They need to be a lot better, but when South Texas College first started, the unemployment levels were about 24%.”

Dean Reyna recognizes Dr. Shirley Reed, president of South Texas College, for her efforts in this monumental endeavor. She is a champion because she faced the difficulties of getting such a good idea and needed services in education at STC to where it is today.

I remember that she said one day that they didn’t have enough funds to cover payroll. Nevertheless, Dr. Reed, the board of trustees and many other citizens persisted, and now you can see for yourself.

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In the headline of this publisher’s word, I used the word ‘force.’ Let me give you a bit more of what STC represents for us. The current employee count of South Texas College as of May 2019 is as follows: 

The exciting part is that this year, STC reports that students for Spring 2019 total 32,604; with Students Online 7,954; and Dual Enrollment 15,003.  Online and dual enrollment are part of the Spring total. That is impressive.

Also, STC is the only community college in the State of Texas to offer four baccalaureate degrees. The college has a faculty and staff to serve the college’s six campuses, two higher education centers, and one virtual campus.

And in case you didn’t know, STC is accredited by the Commission on Colleges of the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools and offers more than 120 degree and certificate options, including associate degrees in a variety of liberal art, social science, business, math, science, technology, advanced manufacturing, and allied health fields of study.

Dean Reyna plays his part in this authentic educational institution of the region, and he has done it well.

More news inside, enjoy!

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