In 2006, the University was granted $50,000 annually for a three-year period by the Guadalupe and Lilia Martinez Foundation, for the sole purpose of providing study abroad scholarships to students from the region. This generous contribution has had a big impact on the increase of study abroad numbers, and has resulted in TAMIU having one of the higher study abroad ratios for Hispanic students in the state of Texas. The Foundation has been extremely satisfied with the outcome of their scholarship program, and has recently committed an additional $100,000 annually for the next three years. Office of Student Affairs (OSA) has undertaken various initiatives to aggressively advocate study abroad at all levels and increase student participation. These include a highly flexible financial aid policy, a comprehensive study abroad marketing plan, and two generous study abroad scholarship programs. One of these scholarship programs is the Guadalupe and Lilia Martinez International Fellow Scholarship.
The mission of the Office of Student Affairs (OSA) is to encourage Texas A&M International University (TAMIU) students and faculty to participate in international education programs by increasing study abroad awareness and providing services that facilitate, enhance, and enrich their experiences.
The increase in scholarship funding through both the International Education Fee Scholarship (a scholarship funded through student fees) and the Guadalupe and Lilia Martinez International Fellows Scholarship has also resulted in an increase of interest on part of the faculty to develop new study abroad initiatives. This summer five new programs are offered, all direct contributions made by TAMIU faculty. Through these experiences, faculty have an opportunity to internationalize and specialize within their discipline and to use their experiences abroad in the classroom, thus impacting those students who have not had the opportunity to study or travel abroad.
This program was recognized as an Honorable Mention for making innovative and/or significant improvement in increasing Latino student success.