During a three-day journey to Mexico City, Texas State President Denise Trauth met with government officials, leaders of businesses and heads of academic institutions to strengthen the relationship between the university and the country.
“Having relationships with various Mexican entities, whether they be academic, political or financial, serves the institution as much today as it will in the future,” Trauth said. “They are our neighbors and one of our country’s largest trade partners. We should be taking advantage of the resources and opportunities we can offer each other.”
Trauth has established efforts to evolve Texas State into a tier one research institution. She said trips to Mexico help mature university growth.
Through meetings with corporation leaders and heads of institutions, Texas State is able to cultivate funding, exercise resources and create opportunities for faculty, staff and students, Trauth said.
Despite any political tension, Trauth said she is committed to remaining partners with Mexico.
“Many of our students have roots in Mexico, and it is important that we remain in a strong partnership with the country,” Trauth said. “This trip was not focused on politics, it was for the betterment of our university.”
Ajay Lerma, 2015 alumnus, said he feels the university is moving in the right direction by developing stronger ties with Mexico.
“As an alumni, I am thankful the leadership at the university is taking these kinds of steps to ensure more opportunities for myself and every other graduate,” Lerma said. “Being a Hispanic-serving institution and having partnerships with Mexico just makes sense.”
Among the many conversations and topics discussed, Trauth hopes Texas State and Mexican institutions would take better advantage of the Fulbright program.
The Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs states, “The Fulbright Program is the flagship international educational exchange program sponsored by the U.S. government and is designed to increase mutual understanding between the people of the United States and the people of other countries.”
Trauth was accompanied on this trip by other Texas State officials such as James Taylor, alumnnus and development foundation chair.
“Mexico is a growing economy, and Texas State is a growing institution,” Taylor said. “The growth generates a lot of need for workers. Being able to talk to these large Mexican companies is going to set students up for jobs. They are creating jobs, and we have relationships to fill those jobs with our students.”
Taylor went on to say both goals for the trip were met, creating financial opportunities and advancing research.
“The cornerstones of the trip were to create financial opportunities for our students down the road, and advance the idea of becoming a tier one research institution,” Taylor said. “Both of those were accomplished.”
In addition to strengthening relationships with Mexico City, the delegation also established the first international alumni chapter. Alumni are encouraged to stay connected to serving, strengthening, supporting and celebrating Texas State. This alumni chapter can be a voice of Bobcat pride and development in Mexico City.
“Trauth also hosted a reception with Texas State alumni in Mexico and presented a charter establishing the first international chapter of the Texas State Alumni Association,” stated in a press release by the Office of Media Relations. “The charter was presented to inaugural chapter co-leaders Ramiro Velasco and Fernando Calderon. More than 90 Texas State alumni live in and around Mexico City, and roughly 45 attended the alumni event.”
Trauth’s delegation included members from the university and city of San Marcos: Eugene Bourgeois, provost and vice president for academic affairs; Barbara Breier, vice president for university advancement; James Taylor, chair of development foundation; Adriana Cruz, president of the Greater San Marcos Partnership; and David Coleman, director of the Wittliff Collections.
The delegation met with a variety of political, educational and corporate leaders.