‘A True Institution’
STC President Continues Vision for Higher Ed
South Texas College President Dr. Ricardo J. Solis shares vision for the college with board members and search committee members in attendance at the Pecan campus, Thursday, July 29, 2021.
In a Board of Trustees' reception held Thursday, July 29 at the Pecan Campus, committee members supported and credited president Dr. Ricardo J. Solis’ vision for South Texas College.
His vision includes continuous innovation for returning students and adults, ongoing globalization, continuing South Texas College’s current position as national leader in baccalaureate program offerings and other excellent initiatives, and transforming the college in preparation for new and emerging opportunities that lie ahead.
“We are going to change for the needs of our students, that’s the bottom line,” said Dr. Solis. “That’s what we’re here for.”
Those in attendance for the reception credited Dr. Solis’ experience and history with the south Texas region.
Mike Perez, Weslaco City Manager, recalls Dr. Solis’ work ethic at the age of 27 when he worked with Dr. Solis, who then held the title of Vice President of Economic Development for the city of Harlingen.
When later asked by Perez at the time, “Why go into higher education?” Solis said, “We all want to lead a positive life with everyone.”
“We knew this person had to be visionary, understand our community and college, and had to have the affirmation and desire to not only come in to this amazing college that had already elevated itself in the last 27 years, but who was willing to come in and say, ‘I think I can make this better."
“I think the college hit a homerun in hiring Dr. Solis,” said Perez.
In continuing STC’s mission for reaching higher education, Dr. Solis also credited former South Texas College President, Dr. Shirley A. Reed in making the college a “true institution that provides opportunities for people to excel.”
STC Trustee, Rene Guajardo said the passion Dr. Solis holds is going to make the institution flourish, especially building on the foundation first started by Dr. Reed.
“There’s nothing like the passion he brings forth and that’s extremely vital to any organization...I know he’s going to continue that legacy that’s been here a long time,” said Guajardo.
Guajardo also has a personal investment in the school sharing that his daughter earned her associate degree with STC and looks forward to the future as his son plans to attend in the fall.
“My children are products of South Texas College and I have a vested interest in this particular college,” said Guajardo. “I see a lot of potential and there’s a lot of great things that have happened and will continue to happen.”
“We will accomplish great things,” Guajardo said.
Dr. Solis emphasized STC’s credentials in offering flexibility, complete resources and comprehensive programs from degrees to short-term diplomas.
Rose Benavidez, Board Chair, highlighted the recognition STC has earned over the years including being named No.1 best online community college in the state, and most affordable online college for earning a bachelor degree and associate in nursing in the nation.
While making the decision to select STC’s new president, Benavidez shared that the board and search committee knew that the choice would have lasting implications.
“We knew this person had to be visionary, understand our community and college, and had to have the affirmation and desire to not only come in to this amazing college that had already elevated itself in the last 27 years, but who was willing to come in and say, ‘I think I can make this better,’” said Benavidez.
Dr. Solis concluded saying he had “many plans” for the college and thanked the board and search committee for their continued support and understanding of his vision.
The South Texas College Board of Trustees would like to thank those who served on the search committee including:
Mr. Paul R. Rodriguez, Search Committee Chair
STC Board of Trustees, Past Chair
Mr. Victor Anzaldua
Student Government Association President, Pecan Campus
Mr. Noel Benavidez
Mr. Sergio Contreras
RGV Partnership, President & CEO
Hon. Jim Darling
Former City of McAllen, Mayor
Mrs. Mary Elizondo
South Texas College, VP of Finance and Administrative Services
Dr. Sylvia Flores
South Texas College Faculty Senate, President-Elect
Ms. Aisha Gonzalez
Mrs. Bonnie Gonzalez
Knapp Community Care Foundation, CEO
Dr. Frank Guajardo
Museum of South Texas History, CEO
Mr. Rene Guajardo
STC Board of Trustees, Member
Mr. Gary Gurwitz
STC Board of Trustees, Founding Member
Dr. Danny King
Leadership Innovation Transformation, Owner/ CEO
Ms. Itzayanna Lopez
Student Government Association President, Starr County Campus
Mr. Daniel Montez
South Texas College, Mid Valley Campus Administrator
Dr. Art Montiel
South Texas College, Starr County Campus Administrator
Mr. Keith Patridge
McAllen Economic Development Corporation, President & CEO
Mr. Mike Perez
City of Weslaco, City Manager
Dr. Maria Rosas
South Texas College, Health information Technology Instructor