Paulette Guajardo to Serve as Island University’s Fall Commencement Speaker

CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas – As a lifelong resident of Corpus Christi, City Council Member At-Large Paulette M. Guajardo has a deep knowledge of the challenges faced by her beloved hometown. A graduate of Flour Bluff High School, Guajardo earned a Bachelor of Business Administration from Texas A&M University-Corpus Christi in 2000. 

A former small-business owner who successfully owned and operated her own Allstate Insurance Agency for 15 years, Guajardo was first elected as an at-large member to the Corpus Christi City Council in November 2016. She was sworn in Dec. 13, 2016, and won re-election two years later. She is focused on being a full-time member of the City Council and feels a sense of duty to represent all the citizens of Corpus Christi, regardless of where they live. Guajardo’s goal is to maintain independence with each vote cast and bases those votes solely on merit and impacts to all parts of our city.

Two decades removed from her own Island University graduation, Guajardo will serve as the 2019 Fall Commencement speaker for her alma mater.

“When I received the invitation to be the commencement speaker, I felt honored and humbled. There are a handful of life’s most important days – and this is definitely one of them,” Guajardo said. “I am blessed to have been given the opportunity to speak before the graduating class of 2019 at my alma mater and will cherish it forever!” 

The 2019 Fall Commencement exercise for 1,022 Islander graduates, which is a 16 percent increase from fall 2018, takes place at the American Bank Center in downtown Corpus Christi on Saturday, Dec.14. The schedule features two ceremonies:

  • 10 a.m.: College of Business, College of Education and Human Development, and College of Nursing and Health Sciences
  • 2 p.m.: College of Liberal Arts, College of Science and Engineering, and University College

“In my commencement address, I will focus on inclusion, meeting life’s challenges, seizing opportunity, and giving back to the Islander community,” Guajardo said.

As part of her commitment to our region, Guajardo serves on various nonprofit boards, including Catholic Charities of South Texas, Foster Angels of South Texas, and Big Brothers Big Sisters of South Texas. In addition, she is a member of the Citizens Review Committee at Child Protective Services and served for several years on the board of the Ark Assessment Center and Emergency Shelter. The daughter of Corpus Christi residents Juan and Magdalena Rodriguez, Guajardo is married to Corpus Christi attorney Victor Guajardo, Jr; the couple has one son.  

An Islander through and through, Guajardo has been an advocate for TAMU-CC while on the City Council and regularly attends University functions. She serves on the Islander Alumni Association Board of Directors and is a firm believer that the education the University delivers is an economic engine for Corpus Christi and South Texas.

“The university’s growth has helped the City grow our intellectual capital and spur economic development,” she said. “The Island University continues to be a dynamic community partner, and Islanders have galvanized community pride.” 

To learn more about the ceremonies or to watch a live stream the day of the event, visit the commencement website. Make the most of the occasion by sharing your graduation celebration photos or tweets by using #IslanderForever and #IslanderImpact.