Recent Texas A&M University-Kingsville (TAMUK) graduate Ramiro “Rami” Garza never thought he would go to college, let alone find his passion there.
“I honestly didn’t want to go to college,” Garza said. “I wanted to attend ITT Tech in San Antonio and major in network engineering.”
Garza entered TAMUK in Fall 2011 as a Journalism major/ speech minor after visiting the campus.
“I chose TAMUK because I attended a workshop with Dr. Flores and loved the campus and department,” he said.
While at TAMUK, Garza was involved in every aspect of student media, including The South Texan, KTAI FM 91.1, and the Javelina Broadcast Network.
“I enjoyed KTAI the most because I always wanted to be on the radio,” Garza said.
Even though he wasn’t a Radio/Television major, Garza said he always dreamed of hearing his voice on the airwaves.
“I always played ‘dj’ in my room when I was younger and started my own internet radio station in high school so I figured I’d love KTAI,” Garza said.
Garza’s childhood dream became a reality when he became Promotions Manager of KTAI FM his sophomore year, and later Program Director.
“I am most proud of bringing the radio station up to a standard that no one else had before,” Garza said. “We basically were at industry standard in terms of the way our back-bone was structured.”
Under Garza’s direction, KTAI FM evolved into a “top hits” station, and featured a country segment his junior year.
The station also won the first “Spirit of College Radio Award” in 2011, naming them “Best College Station in the Nation.”
Aside from the radio station, Garza was also heavily involved in the Javelina Broadcast Network, the student-run livestream.
“I started JBN with no experience or knowledge of video production and I love what it has become,” Garza said.
JBN livestreams home sporting events, the annual Miss TAMUK Pageant, various concerts on campus, and the Lone Star Football Festival held at AT&T Stadium in Arlington.
Garza was producer and director of the Javelina Broadcast Network during his time at TAMUK.
He said his work at the university has impacted how he looks at deadlines.
“My work at the university has prepared me for deadlines and how to meet them,” Garza said. “Also, there are consequences when deadlines aren’t met, especially when you’re live on the radio or video broadcast.”
After graduation, Kleberg Bank hired Garza as a relationship banker.
Though it’s not exactly where he pictured himself, he said, Garza is excited to work for a community bank.
“It’s out of my norm working at a bank, but I chose Kleberg Bank because they share the same enthusiasm as me when it comes to community involvement and the university,” Garza said.
Garza was nominated as the Arts, Communications and Theatre “Student of the Year” at the annual awards luncheon last May.
“I actually didn’t know I was nominated until they called me up during the lunch,” Garza said.
Garza was humbled when he received the title of “Student of the Year,” he said, especially after four years of working with what he loves.
“I felt honored to say the least. I’m sure there was someone else that deserved it just as much as I did,” Garza said. “I am glad that I as recognized for all the hard work I put in my four years as an undergrad.”