Author Archives: VBR

Innovation Grant Awards process explained Jan. 26

Those wishing to compete in the McAllen Chamber of Commerce’s 2012 Innovation Grant Awards may want to attend the next I&E Network Jan. 26 at 6 p.m. to learn more about the process. Applicants may request up to $10,000 to establish, expand, develop or advance a basic business product idea. All the details and procedures of the competition will be explained during the meeting. The competition, awards and grant are…

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Harlingen named country’s least-expensive city; McAllen ranks third

The Council for Community and Economic Research has gathered data from the third quarter of 2011 from 309 urban areas to rank them in their Cost of Living Index. The result is Harlingen being named the least-expensive city to live in, nationally, with McAllen following closely, ranked third. The ranking is based on pricing data on 60 consumer goods and services that represent a larger cluster of goods and services.…

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McAllen mayor gives State of the City address Jan. 19

McAllen Mayor Richard F. Cortez delivers his 2012 State of the City Address Jan. 19 from 11:30 a.m.- 1 p.m. at the McAllen Convention Center, 700 Convention Center Drive. Entitled “McAllen: The New Frontier for Innovation”, the address is expected to discuss the challenges and successes of the past fiscal year. The mayor’s speech is also expected to lay out a vision for “growth and prosperity.” Tickets for the event,…

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Alternative energy wind towers arrive at Port of Brownsville

After aggressively pursuing by the Port of Brownsville and private partners, alternative energy wind towers arrived at the Port of Brownsville on Jan. 9 from China as part of the Los Vientos, Willacy County wind farm. The collaborative effort to unload and transport the wind towers included Dix Shipping, Gulfstream Marine and Lone Star Transportation.  Port officials are expecting a second shipment within the week.  Port officials are actively working…

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UTB online education master’s program named one of top in nation

U.S. News & World Report announced yesterday (Jan. 10) that The University of Texas at Brownsville’s College of Education is one of the publication’s top 15 programs in the nation for its master’s degree online program in Educational Technology. The publication categorized the program in it’s Student Services and Instructional Technology category. UTB’s program is one of four universities from Texas in the top 15 in the nation, ranking 14…

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University Center recognized again

University Center, located on the Texas State Technical College Harlingen campus, recently received its third industry award, a regional Award of Merit in the Green Project category for 2011 from the Engineering News-Record magazine. SpawGlass Contractors submitted the nomination to ENR for its energy conservation features, which includes a 442 solar panel roof which provides up to 106 kilowatts of electricity, a sun-shaded curtain wall, and reclaimed wood taken from…

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Efficiency Training Results in Leaner Operation

“We’re seeing more than a tenfold return on our investment in Six Sigma training,” said Joe Olmeda, VP of Manufacturing at BSN Medical in the Rio Grande Valley. The Reynosa-Hidalgo facilities of the global company make and distribute fracture management components, the supplies that are used to protect and immobilize fractured arms and legs. The seven BSN mangers who trained for the Six Sigma Black Belt in 2011 have applied…

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Knapp Acquisition Labeled a Win-Win Situation

South Texas Health System’s acquisition of Knapp Medical Center in Weslaco is scheduled to be finalized at the end of January 2012. The partnership process began in May 2011 when a consultant hired by Knapp Medical Center recommended that the 226-bed community hospital find a strategic partner in the local marketplace. After reviewing various proposals, Knapp Medical Center chose to enter into negotiations with South Texas Health System (STHS). A…

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Employment Professionals: Puzzle Solvers

Susan LeMiles

Each year 9.7 million people are hired by staffing firms to report for work at companies in the U.S. Sixty-four percent of management and executive positions are filled by third-party recruiters … these guys definitely do something right. Whether you are outsourcing your entire HR function to a multinational staffing firm, using a specialty recruiter working on straight commission or engaging the world’s most elite executive search firm, the rules…

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Nominations being accepted by SBA for small business awards

The U.S. Small Business Administration is seeking nominations for awards honoring the critical economic role small businesses play in federally funded research and development through SBA’s Small Business Innovation Research and Small Business Technology Transfer programs. Three awards will be given in Washington, DC in April: one for companies that have participated in the SBIR/STTR programs, one for individuals who advocate on behalf of the programs, and a third “Hall…

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