Nine Texas A&M University-Commerce students recently completed the yearlong Leadership Without Limits program and ventured abroad to Jamaica.
Leadership Without Limits is a co-curricular global justice experience sponsored by the Office of Intercultural Engagement and Leadership at A&M-Commerce. The program provides students the opportunity to research a social justice issue of their choice in a country that is deeply affected by the issue. Students meet weekly from September to May of each academic year to develop an understanding of experiential leadership, service and social justice in a global context.
Each cohort is expected to meet with foreign industry leaders, curate a trip itinerary that further exposes them to systemic issues around their social justice topic and fundraise extensively in order to support their travel abroad.
This year, Leadership Without Limits proudly celebrates its ninth year with this group of nine students. Student participants included Mariana Botello a junior nursing major from Sulphur Springs, Texas; Diana Herrera, a junior nursing major from Sulphur Springs; Raquel Medrano-Palacios, a senior psychology major from Commerce, Texas; Jasmin Andrade, a senior Spanish major from Ennis, Texas; Zayda Garcia, a junior biology major from Alvarado, Texas; Kamea Bartholomew, a junior nursing major from San Antonio, Texas; Sayra Lozano, a junior marketing major from Dallas, Texas; Pete Rios, a senior psychology major from Commerce; and Priscila Mojica, a senior business management major from Commerce.
“This year’s cohort decided to partner with Jamaica’s College of Agriculture, Science and Education as they explored poverty in Jamaica through an agricultural lens,” said Cindy Rios, assistant director of the Office of Intercultural Engagement and Leadership at A&M-Commerce. “They worked on the College’s farm to explore Jamaica’s unique approach to farm-to-table practices. They ventured through indigenous communities and conducted informational interviews with Jamaican Maroons. They hiked a number of trails, explored Jamaica’s natural resources, spoke with a local high school and visited several museums.”
These students not only excelled within this program but within the classroom, too. The group maintained an average GPA of 3.61, one of the highest in the program’s history.
Next year, the program is slated to celebrate its 10-year anniversary with a trip to Australia. The participants of the next cohort will be released in Fall 2022.