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Thursday Plenary Speaker Juliet Garcia

Juliet V. García
The University of Texas at Brownsville and Texas Southmost College Brownsville, Texas, USA
Biliteracy in a Global Society: The Role of South Texas
Thursday, March 31, 2-2:45 pm

South Texas, the fastest growing region in the state, is home to children who grow up using two languages. The school system is home to hundreds of children who love to compete in chess; it is just another language to them. The ability is a precious asset, which is primed for changing the way education and business see the human capital in the region. Through an innovative curriculum, The University of Texas at Brownsville and Texas Southmost College is creating opportunities for students to learn in two languages and receive biliterate certification with their degrees. Imagine the well-educated engineer who is comfortable with discussing or writing about engineering in English and Spanish. Imagine the work of music teachers, business developers, or researchers who will have benefited from an education that gave them the opportunity to expand upon their way of life or to come into a place that encouraged it. "Our mission is not the only one in this quest, and we look forward to sharing the processes and the results with institutions across the nation."

Juliet V. García joined The University of Texas System in 1992 as president of The University of Texas at Brownsville, after serving as President of Texas Southmost College (TSC) for 6 years. She led the drive to form a partnership between The University of Texas at Brownsville and Texas Southmost College and to make U.T. Brownsville a 4-year university. Hispanic Business and Texas Hispanic magazines have recognized Garcia as one of the nation's most influential Hispanics, and NBC honored her with the VIDA Award for her contributions in education. In 2002, the Brownsville Independent School District named a middle school in her honor. In 2003, she received the Mujer Regional Award from the National Hispana Leadership Institute, and in 2004, the Latina Excellence Award from Hispanic magazine. Dr. García has served as chair of the American Council of Education, the nation's foremost educational policy organization representing members of 1,800 colleges and universities. She has been a participant in a post-apartheid South Africa Project and in an Aspen Institute project studying Higher Education in a Changing Society.

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