Students at the Dr. Abraham P. Cano Freshman Academy looked to their futures during a special visit from the Chancellor of the University of Texas Systems Dr. Francisco Cigarroa.
During his visit, Dr. Cigarroa focused on the new university that will unite the University of Texas at Brownsville, the Regional Academic Health Center in Harlingen and the University of Texas-Pan American in Edinburg.
The new university will be home to a school of medicine. The university, which is currently being called Project South Texas, is expected to open in 2015, with its medical component opening in 2016.
“We are honored that the Chancellor chose to come to Harlingen Public Schools and visit with our students at the Dr. Abraham P. Cano Freshman Academy,” said Interim Superintendent Dr. Arturo Cavazos. “As we transform HCISD, they are transforming the University of Texas System. We are parallel together working as partners.”
Students were also given the opportunity to ask the Chancellor any questions they had about the university.
“I’m coming here with open mind, and also, with an attitude of ‘I want to learn from you as to how we actually create this new university,” said Dr. Cigarroa. ”This is where innovation begins, and this is probably the best place to come and learn how to innovate.”
Each of the 50 students selected to attend the special meeting had their questions pre-determined and raised their hands anxiously to be selected. The students were selected based on their involvement in the School of Health Sciences.
Questions ranged from how the facility would be funded to its incorporation of extracurricular sports, but regardless if their questions were selected or not, students were able to gain further insight to what their future may hold, said Ande Beasley, student at Dr. Cano Freshman Academy.
With his visit, students also hoped that they were able to share with the Chancellor that their school is very unique to the Rio Grande Valley and inline with the UT Systems mission to connecting multiple institutions.
“Our school is very similar to what the Chancellor is trying to accomplish by combining the two universities into one,” said Josue Ayala. “We were separate schools. Some of us were Cardinals and some of us were Hawks, but here together, we are united as Ravens.”
To see photos from the event click here.