MISSION, Texas – Some people feel that when, years ago, former Mission Mayor Norberto “Beto” Salinas failed to help fund the fledgling UT-Rio Grande Valley School of Medicine it hurt his city’s chances of securing any type of UTRGV facility.

The so-called “big four” in Hidalgo County – McAllen, Edinburg, Mission and Pharr – along with the county itself had pledged to help get the medical school off the ground. Mission never came through. 

And, while the university started placing a flag in other communities across the Valley, Mission missed out. 

Now, however, things are finally changing. Last week, UTRGV announced it was opening a satelitte office or “hub” in Mission’s Center for Education and Economic Development. The university’s presence will be overseen by its Office of Workforce & Economic Development.

The CEED building is located at 801 Bryan Road.

“Establishing these hubs in our partner cities is an important initiative that will positively affect the areas we are serving and our university students, who will benefit from the future career and business opportunities this will bring,” said Veronica Gonzales, UTRGV senior vice president of Governmental and Community Relations.

Ron Garza is associate vice president for Workforce & Economic Development at UTRGV. At a news conference, Garza said the new hub would be the “front-door” to programs and services provided by to Valley communities. 

Among the services that will be provided are city and economic development corporation performance impacts which include businesses created and expanded, jobs created and expanded, and trainings.

“Our strategy is to advance our region’s workforce and economic development ‘ecosystem’ by creating a network of hub and satellite offices across the RGV,” Garza said. “There are many benefits to having this network, and a couple of key priorities are creating accessibility and awareness of UTRGV’s service offerings and expanding our footprint.”

Garza said plans are in the works with other Valley communities to strategically build the network.

The Rio Grande Guardian International News Service interviewed Garza at the news conference. Here is the interview:


Editor’s Note: The main offices for UTRGV’s Office of Workforce and Economic Development are housed at the CESS Building in Edinburg and the new eBridge Center in Brownsville, which opened on March 9. 

Editor’s Note: To learn more about UTRGV’s Office of Workforce and Economic Development, visit https://www.utrgv.edu/economic-development/.

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