Texas Border Business
McALLEN, Texas – South Texas College will hold its fourth annual virtual Binational Education Symposium from Nov. 8-9.
Created as a collaborative effort between STC, Universidad Autonoma de Tamaulipas (UAT) and INDEX Reynosa, the symposium will offer virtual conferences as well as workshops from academic researchers and experts in international commerce and economics.
In a first for the annual event, experts and students from Texas A&M University’s Department of Agricultural Economics will participate and add research topics to the program.
The event is free of charge, open to the public and will be held virtually through Microsoft Teams. See all the events and their respective links here.
“We are bringing students from different universities, in this case locally and from Mexico,” said Marcela Gonzalez, assistant chair for STC’s Business Administration program and project lead for the Symposium. “We combine the efforts from both sides of the border, faculty and students, and while it is a lot of work, it’s always interesting how we all work together towards that common goal, which is participating in an event in this binational experience where we all benefit.”
Topics that will be covered at this year’s event will include innovations in supply chain implementation and management, as well as public and private sector innovations in artificial intelligence.
Workshops will also be offered in topics relevant to the skills and knowledge required in the fields of international commerce and supply chain operations.
The event is also highly regarded for its signature Binational Education Symposium challenge, an interscholastic competition that has students from eight institutions vying for educational technology awards and prizes using the skills and knowledge they receive from the event.
Since its virtual start in 2020, the Symposium has hosted over 2,000 attendees, and has reached attendees in New York, Chile and everywhere in between. Speakers have included faculty from institutions like New York University (NYU), the University of Texas-San Antonio and Eastern Carolina University, as well as entrepreneurs, Chief Executive Officers and foremost experts in international trade.
Alejandra Cortez will be among four STC students competing in the challenge. Cortez said that the networking opportunities will take her. She is pursuing a career in marketing or international business.
“I’m very excited to compete and I am very enthusiastic about learning about business,” Cortez said. “I think the whole experience is intriguing as I am always on the lookout to receive more opportunities for knowledge and growing my network to help my future job prospects. This will definitely push me forward.”
Aside from competing, the students will attend virtual presentations throughout the first day of the symposium and will then be tested on everything they learned. The teams that answer the most questions correctly advance to the final round, which is planned on the second day of the event.
“It is truly a remarkable experience for our students in a number of different ways, and it’s certainly a challenge because none of our students are declared majors in either international commerce, international business or trade, yet they are going up against universities whose students really are the best they have to offer,” said STC Economics Instructor and team advisor Kevin Peek, Ph.D. “I think what is most remarkable of all is that over the last two years, our students have still placed second and third consecutively despite this challenging competition.”
For more information on the Binational Education Symposium or to see the list of speakers and events visit www.southtexascollege.edu/info/bes/.