MCALLEN, Texas – John E. Hurtado, interim vice chancellor and dean of engineering at Texas A&M University, says there is no reason the Rio Grande Valley cannot become the Silicon Valley of manufacturing.

Hurtado gave his upbeat message about the region while speaking at a news conference held to announce the formation of the Texas Engineering Academy at South Texas College. The announcement, held at STC’s Pecan Campus in McAllen, included remarks from Texas A&M Chancellor John Sharp and STC President Ricardo Solis. 

In an exclusive interview with the Rio Grande Guardian International News Service after the news conference had concluded, Hurtado said: “This region can be the new Silicon Valley for manufacturing. Look, you’ve got the population base that’s here, you have an opportunity to educate, to up-skill, to re-skill the people that are here. If we can attract industries and different companies to be here, manufacturing will be central to this area.”

Hurtado said both the United States and Texas need engineers, technologists and technicians to make products for the United States, for national security reasons and more. 

The video interview below features the analysis of Hurtado, Solis, and Brownsville native Mike Hernandez, a Texas A&M University System regent. 


Editor’s Note: The above video story is the second in a four-part series on the Texas A&M University-South Texas College partnership to create an Engineering Academy. Click here to watch Part One, which features the analysis of Mike Willis, executive director of South Texas Manufacturers Association.

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