Wednesday, May 8, 2024
  Around Campus, Community, Student Life, Academics

By Amanda Alaniz

RIO GRANDE VALLEY, TEXAS – MAY 08, 2024 – Eric Arredondo, from McAllen, says graduation is not only a time of celebrations for his achievements, but also a time to reflect on the support he’s received throughout his college career at UTRGV.

Arredondo is the first in his family to graduate from a four-year university, setting an example for his two younger sisters. His parents told him he has the potential to accomplish much more in his life, he said, and of course, they will be in the crowd to watch him walk across the stage on Saturday, May 11, at the Bert Ogden Arena in Edinburg.

“I'm not just leaving with a diploma; I'm emerging as a completely transformed individual,” he said. “I entered UTRGV as an introvert, uncertain about my life and career path, but I'm leaving as an extrovert, with a fresh outlook on life and a determined pursuit of both success and happiness.”

Arredondo will now have a Bachelor of Business Administration in Management from UTRGV’s Robert C. Vackar College of Business and Entrepreneurship, which he plans to follow up this fall by starting UTRGV’s online master’s program in business analytics. His goal is to continue to invest in himself as much as possible as he prepares to enter the workforce.

RCVCOBE students part of Kemper Scholars presenting
Being a Kemper Scholar, Eric Arredondo, and his colleagues presented their end-of-year research projects to Kemper representatives, family and college leadership. (Courtesy Photo)
“It's an exciting opportunity to further my education and gain valuable hands-on experience in a dynamic, professional environment,” he said.

Arredondo’s involvement at UTRGV was significant and had a big influence on him as he was earning his degree.

He was part of ENACTUS UTRGV, a student network of leaders committed to using business as a catalyst for positive social and environmental impact, and was recognized as a Kemper Scholar, a program dedicated to helping students prepare for the business world.

While part of ENACTUS, he was able to volunteer at area food banks to distribute meals and educate younger generations about financial literacy. Each event he participated in played a role in shaping the person he has become, he said.

As for being a Kemper Scholar, it meant his efforts did not go unnoticed, and it proved to him that he could accomplish significant milestones.

“Being a Kemper Scholar is about representing both my university and any future company I join with integrity and excellence, potentially influencing future generations positively,” he said.


The soon-to-be UTRGV alum now will relocate to San Antonio for the summer for an internship with EY, a prestigious “Big Four” company. As a technology risk consulting intern, he will be immersed in a dynamic realm, collaborating with prominent entities like banks, universities and major corporations like AT&T.

UTRGV Enactus Chapter helping with donations
Last year, UTRGV Enactus hosted their annual Cansgiving event donating packaged Thanksgiving meals to families in need throughout the RGV. (Courtesy Photo)
“My role involves auditing and monitoring their IT processes, risks and controls, ensuring they maintain robust systems and compliance standards,” he said. “It's an exciting opportunity to contribute to the cybersecurity and operational integrity of these organizations while gaining invaluable hands-on experience in the field.”

At the same time, he will be working on his master’s of science in Business Analytics from UTRGV, via the accelerated online program.

As he reflects on his academic journey at UTRGV, he recognized it may have been a little unconventional – transitioning from Zoom classes during the COVID-19 pandemic to attending in-person sessions. But it was impactful, he said, and provided meaningful connections.  

“While the Valley may be small, its contributions should not be overlooked in the global marketplace,” he said.

His advice to next group of Vaqueros is to seize every opportunity to expand their network, to enrich their resumes with diverse experiences, and to approach each task with unwavering dedication. Throughout his college career, Arredondo said, he was able to fulfill a variety of internships, including a strategy and operations internship at Kemper.

“A professor once shared a quote that deeply resonated with me. ‘Who has loved you into being? And more importantly, who will you love into being,’” he said. “It underscores the significance of both acknowledging those who have supported us, and our responsibility to mentor and uplift others along our journey.”

UTRGV Commencement is scheduled over two days, May 10 in Brownsville and May 11 in Edinburg. For complete information, 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.