The future of the Texas banking industry is bright, as evidenced by the growing number of banking programs offered at Texas colleges and universities, including banking degrees, banking minors, commercial banking certificates and executive MBAs.
The Texas Bankers Association, which has supported these programs through monetary contributions, scholarships and the hiring of Brent Cox as vice president of university educational content, has taken its involvement one step forward by offering a Student Membership Program for students enrolled in these programs.
TBA initiated the Student Membership Program last fall, following a membership vote that changed the association’s bylaws, and there is already a growing membership base representing banking students from Sam Houston State University’s Smith-Hutson Endowed Chair of Banking Program, Texas A&M University’s Mays Business School-Commercial Banking Program and Texas Tech University’s Rawls College of Business Excellence in Banking Program.
In addition to these banking programs, banking students at Stephen F. Austin State University, Texas A&M University-Kingsville, University of Houston and Texas Southern University are eligible for the program.“TBA’s impetus for creating the Student Membership Program was threefold,” Cox said, explaining that education, engagement and growth and retention were vital components of this new membership.
“We wanted to establish a platform where relevant events and activities impacting our member banks are made available and discussed within the classroom,” he said. “We also wanted to provide experiential learning opportunities through connectivity with TBA members and associated activities, such as TBA’s Annual Convention, training events and legislative tours. And we wanted to establish peer-to-peer linkage with fellow students across all the Texas-based banking programs, with a focus on improving enrollment and retention.”
VALUE TO STUDENTS
The objective of the new program is to provide undergraduate and MBA banking students with a broad understanding of community banks and the integral part they play within local communities through access to the association’s advocacy, services and vision for the banking industry.
“The TBA student membership will expose our students to the importance of industry collaboration and unity,” said Mike Mauldin, director of Texas Tech’s Excellence in Banking program. “The value of networking, policy and other banking information, continued education opportunities and much more will be available to our students through this membership. We are very thankful to the TBA and their members for this valuable opportunity.”
Students taking advantage of the complimentary program receive a number of benefits.
Students have access to TBA’s monthly publications and newsletters, including Texas Banking magazine and the Texas Banking Student Edition e-newsletter. The goal is to give the students insight into advocacy, banking-related legislation at the state and federal levels, regulatory changes and research and trends.
Student members will have opportunities to network with banking leaders, fellow students and industry professionals through a number of networking events, including the popular Views & Brews and legislative advocacy days.
TBA’s educational offerings, available in a variety of formats, will be accessible to students. Special access and discounts are available to student members for select educational programming and events.
The new program is just one way TBA is helping build the next generation of bankers. The Texas Bankers Foundation has
- Provided matching grants of up to $250,000 to Sam Houston State, Texas Tech and Texas A&M Universities.
- Committed $100,000 over three years to the Future Bankers Leadership Program at Texas Southern University, Jesse H. Jones School of Business, which will launch in the fall.
- Distributed Future Banker and TBA Diversity Scholarships for individuals pursuing a career in banking.
- Assisted in the development of new university banking programs at Stephen F. Austin University, Texas A&M-Kingsville and Texas Southern University to enable local students to find community bank opportunities close to home.
Cox stressed that the banking programs are integral to providing a unique pipeline of talent for the banking industry. “These programs cull students from accounting or finance programs to create this pipeline,” Cox said. “When they come through the program, they are specifically looking for a career in banking.”
“I would like to thank the TBA Board and our members for approving this new level of membership,” he added. “I remain confident that many of today’s students will, in the future, fill the roles of tomorrow’s TBA leaders.”
For more information on the Student Membership Program, visit the TBA website at www.texasbankers.com under the Membership tab.