University of Houston-Victoria

Regional

April 2021

On the Road with CRC

It was a busy month for the UHV Center for Regional Collaboration. We had a great visit in Refugio with representatives from Connected Nation. It is always a treat to hear from the local libraries about the services they provide and the projects on which they are currently working. We visited about the needs of the county and opportunities for the future. If you have time, stop and see Mrs. Tina and her staff. She will welcome you with open arms (socially distanced!) and assist you with your needs, including available business resources.

The UHV-CRC team made a stop in Cuero and had great conversations with various community members. There is never a lack of activity in Cuero, and we like to spread the good news. The Cuero Chamber office is proud to show off their new building, and we are excited about what the new space offers. There is a delicious ice cream business by the old HEB, and we highly recommend you gift your sweet tooth with a scoop of pure decadence.

Important Person

Raquel Garza joined the Golden Crescent Workforce Development Board as the HireAbility Navigator in May 2018, with a strong passion for youth development, inclusion and regionalism. With her role, she services the seven counties of the Golden Crescent region: Calhoun, DeWitt, Goliad, Gonzales, Jackson, Lavaca and Victoria counties.

Raquel spent a number of years in San Antonio, where she obtained a bachelor’s degree in business and a master’s degree in organizational development from the University of the Incarnate Word. She has worked in various roles within the private and public industry. She has a great desire and an ambitious drive to ensure all constituents of the region are served adequately.

Within her current role, she has worked to achieve Texas Workforce Commission’s Workforce Collaboration Award, highlighting the partnership between Workforce Solutions, Vocational Rehabilitation and Adult Education. Most recently, she, in addition to other key stakeholders, spearheaded a youth initiative project that gained state and national attention by showcasing career exploration to students during the COVID-19 pandemic.

To emphasize Raquel’s passion for inclusion, she recently acquired the responsibility of Equal Opportunity Officer with the Workforce Board, sits as Board Commissioner with the Victoria Housing Authority, and is a Panel Member of the Collaborative Partnership with Gulf Bend MHMR Center. Her desire to grow and develop regionalism has allowed her to become a member of the Regional Economic Development Advisory Committee with Golden Crescent Regional Planning Commission and serve as a Committee Member with Golden Crescent Community Organizations Active in Disasters.

Raquel takes an outside-the-box approach when tackling issues that may arise. She is a forward-thinking individual that strives to ensure “everyone has a seat at the table.”

Buzz Around UHV

UHV hosted event to encourage students to believe in themselves.

This event is an extension of the Bridge to Brilliance series, which was created by the Personal Growth and Mentorship subcommittee of the Dean’s Advisory Board for the business school. The purpose of the series is to connect the UHV and business communities and provide personal growth opportunities for entrepreneurs, business students and marketers.

“We designed this event to be a kind of best-of discussion of topics from previous Bridge to Brilliance presentations,” said Rosie McCusker, manager of student recruitment and outreach for the UHV School of Business Administration. “For visiting high school students, we wanted to show them that there are fun and informative events happening on campus. College isn’t just about attending classes and studying.”

Christopher McDonald, a UHV alumnus and a Gulf Bend Center adult mental health case manager, was one of the panelists during the main event. He received his master’s degree in clinical mental health counseling in August and his bachelor’s degree in psychology in 2017, both from UHV.

During his previous presentation, McDonald spoke about the importance of building resilience and the ability to learn from failure. As a student who took dual credit, Advanced Placement, and other honors classes in high school, he has experienced how much pressure students face and how important it is to be able to learn from failure without becoming discouraged. He plans to share parts of that message during the upcoming panel.

Broadband Technology Action Plan

I am excited to announce that our Community Technology Action Plans with Connected Nation have been completed. It was a long and educational process, and we cannot thank our Community Champions enough. It was a lot of work, time, and energy to get the best result for our communities. All three action plans closed the end of May. Connected Nation is compiling data and will provide action plan items for all three of our communities that opted in on the project. We are thankful for Refugio, DeWitt, and Lavaca counties for all their hard work. We should be hearing more from Connected Nation near the end of August or early September. There is an abundance of information out there about funding and we are working with our communities to help understand opportunities, resources, and best practices. We understand that there will not be a major change in the broadband spectrum for approximately five years, but we are hopeful and excited for our region. We have been in contact with communities and counties outside of the Golden Crescent Region. Our goal is to do what is best for our entire area to insure everyone has the resources needed to make the best choice for their future connectivity and infrastructure needs.