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Laredo Campus Extension offers educational opportunities

Posted on Thursday, July 17, 2008 · Volume: XLI · Issue: 14

The Academic Building on the Laredo Campus Extension of the UT Health Science Center San Antonio houses classrooms and faculty offices.
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The Academic Building on the Laredo Campus Extension of the UT Health Science Center San Antonio houses classrooms and faculty offices.clear graphic

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Contact: Rosanne Fohn, (210) 567-3079

LAREDO (July 1, 2008) — The University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio offers Laredo residents the opportunity to earn degrees in several of the highly competitive and well-paid fields of allied health through its Laredo Campus Extension, located at 1937 Bustamante Street.

“This campus is a longtime dream for me and a number of visionary legislators and community leaders who have wanted to offer students from Laredo the chance to become health professionals by taking classes close to home,” said UT Health Science Center President Francisco G. Cigarroa, M.D., who grew up in Laredo.

“We are pleased that students are taking advantage of our programs in Laredo, especially in respiratory care and physician assistant studies, and we can hardly wait to begin offering our new dietetics/nutrition degree,” Dr. Cigarroa said.

Degrees and courses offered in Laredo
Here are some of the educational opportunities available through the Laredo Campus Extension:
  • Respiratory Care — Students can earn a Bachelor of Science degree in Respiratory Care at the Laredo Campus Extension. Respiratory therapists care for patients who have breathing problems. Patients include premature infants, patients with asthma, and those suffering from emphysema, COPD, heart problems and lung cancer. Respiratory care professionals work with physicians to diagnose breathing problems and then provide various treatments to manage these problems. Respiratory therapists may work in hospitals, nursing homes, home health agencies, doctor’s offices or medical equipment supply companies.

  • Physician Assistant Studies — Students can complete two years of the three-year master’s degree in physician assistant (PA) studies in Laredo. The first year students chosen for the Laredo cohort can take all their classes by videoconference or on-site lecture at the Laredo Campus Extension. After their second year of studies in San Antonio, students can return to Laredo for their third year for clinical training.

  • PAs work under the supervision of a doctor to diagnose and treat patients, as well as teach good health practices to their patients. They can work in a variety of medical specialties including family practice, obstetrics/gynecology, pediatrics, research, surgery and emergency medicine. They help fill the critical need for health care providers in South Texas, which is considered to be a medically underserved region in the state.

    The deadline to apply for the fall 2009 PA program is Oct. 1.

  • New Dietetics and Nutrition Program — Pending an accreditation site visit, it is expected that beginning in the fall of 2009, students will be able to earn a new combined bachelor’s and master’s degree in dietetics and nutrition in Laredo. The new coordinated program in dietetics will bring courses to students in Laredo and San Antonio via videoconference and on-site lectures. Supervised clinical training will also be available in both locations.

    Graduates will be qualified to work in clinical dietetics and community nutrition programs in a variety of settings including hospitals, clinics, the food industry, schools and as private nutritional consultants.

    Prospective students who would like more information about career opportunities, prerequisites courses and admission requirements may contact Carmen Roman-Shriver, Ph.D., RD, (956) 523-7461.

  • Clinical Laboratory Science — Students who earn a degree in clinical laboratory science perform important laboratory tests to help doctors diagnose and treat diseases. They can work in hospitals, doctor’s offices and reference laboratories.

    After completing their prerequisite courses at a community or four-year institution, students can apply for admission to the Health Science Center clinical laboratory science program. Classes are held at the Greehey Academic and Research Campus in San Antonio. Students, however, can take up to six weeks of their clinical training in Laredo their senior year.

    However, students who are already certified medical laboratory technicians through a two-year associate’s degree program have another option. They may be able to place out of some of their junior-year courses by taking a competency exam and can take all of their senior-year courses online or by videoconference through the Laredo Campus Extension.
For more information
For more information about the UT Health Science Center’s educational opportunities through the Laredo Campus Extension, please contact the School of Allied Health Sciences Welcome Center at (210) 567- 8744 or toll-free at (866) 802-6288. More information also is available through the School of Allied Health Sciences Web site.


The University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio is the leading research institution in South Texas and one of the major health sciences universities in the world. With an operating budget of $576 million, the Health Science Center is the chief catalyst for the $15.3 billion biosciences and health care sector in San Antonio’s economy. The Health Science Center has had an estimated $35 billion impact on the region since inception and has expanded to six campuses in San Antonio, Laredo, Harlingen and Edinburg. More than 23,000 graduates (physicians, dentists, nurses, scientists and allied health professionals) serve in their fields, including many in Texas. Health Science Center faculty are international leaders in cancer, cardiovascular disease, diabetes, aging, stroke prevention, kidney disease, orthopaedics, research imaging, transplant surgery, psychiatry and clinical neurosciences, pain management, genetics, nursing, allied health, dentistry and many other fields. For more information, visit www.uthscsa.edu.

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