MCALLEN, Texas – Some McAllen ISD students will get chance to participate in a study abroad program at Universidad de Salamanca in Spain. 

The university was founded in 1218 by King Alfonso IX. It is the oldest university in the Hispanic world and one of the oldest in the world in continuous operation.

Brief details about the study program were provided by McAllen ISD Superintendent J.A. Gonzalez in his monthly report to McAllen Economic Development Corporation.

“We’re working on a study abroad program with Salamanca University in Salamanca, Spain. It was built in 1218. Students at the end of their junior year will spend two weeks in Salamanca, go on seven excursions and really have an experience of a lifetime. So we’re excited about that,” Gonzalez said.

The Broadmoor Hotel

In his report to McAllen EDC, Gonzalez also spoke about an internship McAllen ISD is working on with The Broadmoor Hotel, the longest-running Forbes Five-Star, AAA Five-Diamond resort in the world.

The Broadmoor Hotel is in Colorado Springs, a city in Colorado at the eastern foot of the Rocky Mountains.

“We’re currently working with The Broadmoor Hotel. The Broadmoor Hotel is the world’s longest-running Forbes Five Star and Triple Diamond resort in in Colorado Springs,” Gonzalez said. We’re working with them right now to create internships for students that are interested in culinary arts in the service industry. We want our students to learn from the very, very best.”

According to its website, The Broadmoor Hotel offers impeccable service and distinctive amenities. 

“Here, the spirit of the West inspires the adventurer within, providing endless opportunities to explore the picturesque mountains, streams, and canyons that have inspired generations. Experience an iconic Colorado Springs resort where personalized luxury offers an escape from the ordinary and modern details blend seamlessly with the timeless European elegance of our historic hotel,” the website states.

The Broadmoor Hotel first opened in 1918. The website said its founder, Spencer Penrose “set out to create a dining experience that celebrates modern innovation while honoring the culinary traditions of the American West. Over 100 years later, that passion for inspired cuisine continues at The Broadmoor’s award-winning restaurants and lounges.”

The website adds: “We proudly showcase an abundance of restaurants, cafes and lounges that range from renowned fine dining to our casual patisserie, Café Julie’s. With an emphasis on fresh, local, and sustainable ingredients, an authentic and unforgettable culinary adventure awaits at The Broadmoor.”

(Editor’s Note: Click here to watch a video from The Broadmoor Hotel.)

For reservations and more information, contact the Broadmoor’s concierge at 855-421-4301.

Aviation Program

Gonzalez also spoke about the expansion of McAllen ISD’s aviation program.

“We are excited about the fact that our aviation program is expanding to a two-year program. We just got certified to do that. So our students will now start in the 11th grade with the introduction to aerospace and aviation. They will also take the introduction to unmanned aerial flights, which is the commercial drone pilot license. It is more of a practicum so they’ll get most of their flight time done during the day. Right now, they’re having to do it after school.”

Gonzalez said the eight boys and four girls that are currently in the program are doing great. “They already have 60 hours in the air, and they’re doing great on the drone.”

And, on February 4, McAllen ISD has its inaugural Bowling Tournament, Gonzalez said. 

“We started an entrepreneurial program last year called Uncharted Learning. It is like Shark Tank. So, our students are developing products that they’d like to take the market. We’re going to use the money that we get from the Bowling Tournament… to get their product to market things of that sort. So we’re really excited about that.”

Gonzalez also spoke about the McAllen ISD-UTRGV Collegiate Academy being built on a 38-acre site on the corner of Pecan Boulevard and McColl Road. He also spoke about partnerships McAllen ISD is developing with South Texas College and Texas A&M University. “Great things are happening at McAllen ISD,” he said. 

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