Two Islander Faculty Make CC Under 40 List

CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas – Two Island University professors are among the select few outstanding business professionals chosen for this year’s Corpus Christi Under 40 (CCU40) Awards breakfast, which was hosted May 17 by the Young Business Professionals of the Coastal Bend (YBP). The breakfast, held at the Art Museum of South Texas, honored 26 outstanding Coastal Bend professionals under the age of 40, highlighting their contributions to the community. For the first time in the program’s history, this group was composed almost entirely of millennials, ranging in age from 23 to 38.

Dr. Kristina Nelson, Assistant Professor of Counseling and Education Psychology, makes her impact known in multiple places at the Island University. Whether it’s in the classroom or in the counseling center, Nelson can be found doing what she does best: helping others.

“As young professionals, we help shape the future of our community,” Nelson said. “I truly believe in the power of a ‘ripple effect’; one positive action can lead to another and so on. When we make the effort to have a positive influence on our community, the results are exponential.”

Nancy Miller, Assistant Professor of Art and Coordinator of the Graphic Design program, received her bachelor’s degree in Graphic Design from Texas Christian University and her MFA in Media Design from Full Sail University. Miller built her repertoire designing for brands like Nike and creating solutions for a multitude of clients as a Creative Director at a local advertising agency before joining the Island University Department of Art & Design. At A&M-Corpus Christi, she uses her 15 years of real-world experience to enrich the minds of the students. To Miller, the link between education and community work is clear.

“Involvement in the community informs my perspective as an educator,”  said Miller. “It helps me understand the issues that affect my students and allows me to develop meaningful service-learning opportunities for them that dually serve our community.”

Founded by Texas A&M University-Corpus Christi, in partnership with the City of Corpus Christi, and the Port of Corpus Christi, YBP seeks to generate strong relationship within its membership while aiding in the development of the community around them. A percentage of proceeds from the CCU40 breakfast are donated to charity.

 Both Miller and Nelson encourage all young professionals to get involved at a local level.

“Look for a need in the community and ask yourself, ‘What can I do to help or improve the situation?’ Then do so,” Nelson said. “Whether it is through your work or volunteer service, strive to make a positive impact in your community.”

Miller suggested young professionals find a mentor to provide guidance and affiliation suggestions.

“Look into organizations and groups that you wish to support and reach out to them to introduce yourself and offer your time, talents, or expertise to their cause,” Miller said.

Additional Information

The 2019 CCU40 honorees with ties to Texas A&M-Corpus Christi include:

  • Kristina Nelson
    Texas A&M University - Corpus Christi, Assistant Professor of Counseling and Education Psychology
  • Nancy Miller
    Texas A&M University - Corpus Christi Department of Art + Design, Assistant Professor of Art and Graphic Design Program Coordinator
  • Analese Tennyson ’07 ’19 - Bachelor of Arts in Political Science, Master of Science in Educational Administration
  • Lea C. Trevino ‘06 - Bachelor of Science in Nursing