Monday, March 12, 2018
  Alumni, Announcements

By News and Internal Communications

RIO GRANDE VALLEY, TEXAS – Seven students from The University of Texas Rio Grande Valley’s College Assistance Migrant Program (CAMP) presented to students and faculty from across the state at the National Association for Chicana and Chicano Studies “Tejas Foco” Conference in February.

The presentation, titled “Stories of Inspiration and Resiliency: Students’ Journey to Higher Education,” was a discussion of local author Viola Canales’ book of poems, “The Little Devil and the Rose.” The discussion served as a 45-minute panel workshop at the two-day conference, held at Texas Lutheran University.

CAMP has been at UTRGV and at UTPA since 1972, and students have been presenting at the NACCS Conference for the past two years. The program is funded by the U.S. Department of Education and provides academic support services to first-year migrant students.

CAMP Director Jaime Miranda said the Rio Grande Valley is a hub for migrant farmworker families, with an average of 1,200 migrant farmworker seniors graduating from high school each year.

“CAMP students often go through unique obstacles to achieve higher education,” he said, “so transition services are critical.”

At the conference, students discussed those experiences with students and faculty from across Texas.

Michelle Alvarado, UTRGV faculty advisor for the CAMP students, said the conference was a valuable experience.

“It was a great opportunity to network with other students and faculty from Texas who share the common sense of discussing the Latino and Chicano culture,” she said. “It gave these first-year students the opportunity to engage in a scholarly conference, and gave them confidence as scholars.”

For more information on the NACCS “Tejas Foco” Conference, visit


The University of Texas Rio Grande Valley (UTRGV) was created by the Texas Legislature in 2013 as the first major public university of the 21st century in Texas. This transformative initiative provided the opportunity to expand educational opportunities in the Rio Grande Valley, including a new School of Medicine, and made it possible for residents of the region to benefit from the Permanent University Fund – a public endowment contributing support to the University of Texas System and other institutions.

UTRGV has campuses and off-campus research and teaching sites throughout the Rio Grande Valley including in Boca Chica Beach, Brownsville (formerly The University of Texas at Brownsville campus), Edinburg (formerly The University of Texas-Pan American campus), Harlingen, McAllen, Port Isabel, Rio Grande City, and South Padre Island. UTRGV, a comprehensive academic institution, enrolled its first class in the fall of 2015, and the School of Medicine welcomed its first class in the summer of 2016.