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Sen. Hinojosa, County Judge Salinas seek emergency help for storm victims in western Hidalgo County

On Saturday, May 10, 40 more students celebrated their graduation from South Texas College’s Bachelor Program. This marks the second class of graduates to earn a Bachelor of Applied Technology in Technology Management from the college since the program began in 2005. Through the program, graduates are prepared for a variety of career opportunities, including office management, paralegal management, plant supervisor, loan officer and supply chain management. Some of the members of this exclusive group are featured here. Sitting, from left: Dr. Shirley A. Reed, STC president; Juan E. Mejia, STC vice president of Academic Affairs; Yvette González; Mary J. Sustaita; María E. Cantú; Rosalba Ramírez; and Damaris Aguirre. Standing, from left: Yvonne Gutiérrez, Dustin Tichnell; Edna Marines; Adolfo Miranda; Mónica Garza; Gil Cisneros; María Ozuna; Richard García; Juan Segura; Johnny Valladarez; Sonia Elizondo and Mónica Jiménez. See story later in this posting.

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South Texas College is one of only three colleges in the state accredited to offer bachelor’s degrees and is the only college in the state to offer two bachelor’s degree options. In addition to its Bachelor of Applied Technology in Technology Management, the college was accredited to begin offering a Bachelor of Applied Technology in Computer and Information Technologies in spring 2008. Some of the 40 graduates from the groundbreaking academic program are featured here. Sitting, from left: Ricardo Garza; San Juanita Cuevas; Noriselda García; Diana Vittitoe; Elvira Alonzo; and Dr. Ali Esmaeili, STC associate dean of Bachelor Programs. Standing, from left: Alta Alaniz; Erica Villarreal; Isaac Sánchez; Sergio Cardoza; Arturo Flores; Daniel Cortéz; Lillian Silva Flores of Edinburg; Benjamin Arjona of Edinburg; Angélica Cantú; and Carlos Leal of Edinburg. See story later in this posting.

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The University of Texas at Brownsville and Texas Southmost College on Friday, May 9, honored Dr. Rubén Gallegos (featured right), a former superintendent with the Edinburg Consolidated Independent School District, as one of this year’s two Distinguished Alumnus. Gallegos is executive director of International Educational Services, an agency that provides children of illegal immigrants who have been arrested a basic education as they await deportation or reunification. See story later in this posting.

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HEB and Inter National Bank are new sponsors for the third annual Texas Cook ‘Em: High Steaks in Edinburg, a nationally-recognized competition coordinated by the Edinburg Chamber of Commerce, the Edinburg Economic Development Corporation, and the City of Edinburg, and held on July 4 at Edinburg Municipal Park. Featured, from left, are: Evana Vleck, Edinburg Chamber of Commerce Marketing Director; Rey Garza, HEB Unit Director; Cris Torres, Edinburg Chamber of Commerce Chairman; Letty Reyes, Edinburg Economic Development Corporation Project Manager; and Bobby Rodríguez, HEB Store Director. See story later in this posting.

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U.S. Speaker of the House Pelosi to visit UTPA, newly-opened Women’s Hospital at Renaissance

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U.S. Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi, D-San Francisco, will be in Edinburg on Thursday, September 27, first to address students in South Texas at the University of Texas-Pan American, then to participate in the grand opening ceremony for the Women’s Hospital at Renaissance. See story later in this posting.

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A new state law that could eventually lead to the construction of a light rail train system that would transport passengers from Brownsville to Rio Grande City is still on track, said Rep. Armando “Mando” Martinez, D-Weslaco, the author of the legislation. House Bill 2510 creates a mechanism to allow Hidalgo County and any of the other 13 Texas counties that border Mexico to create Commuter Rail Districts. Under HB 2510, each border county will have the opportunity to organize and create a commuter rail board to determine the feasibility of establishing a commuter rail system within their respective county. The legislation, which was sponsored by Sen. Juan “Chuy” Hinojosa, D-McAllen, was endorsed by Gov. Rick Perry, shown here recently signing the measure into law. In attendance at the bill signing ceremony, held in Austin last month, were Hidalgo County Judge J. D. Salinas III (standing, back row, second from left), his wife Janie (standing, first row, first from left) and their two children, Nicholas and Samantha. Also present with Martinez (featured standing, second from right) for the ceremony were Veronica de la Fuente, who is Hidalgo County ‘s governmental director, and Jerry Haddican, General Counselor for Hinojosa.

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STC President Shirley A. Reed addresses the college’s faculty, staff and administration at Professional Development Day, laying a roadmap for the college’s future. The community college system, created by the Legislature in 1993 through a law carried by Sen. Eddie Lucio, Jr., D-Brownsville, and then-Rep. Roberto Gutiérrez, D-McAllen, is now approaching a 20,000 student enrollment. See story later in this posting.

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