At Alma Mater, Perry Hints at 2016

Texas' outgoing governor told Texas A&M graduates on Thursday evening that he needs a job, too — preferably one with a big jet and travel to Iowa, New Hampshire and South Carolina.

Gov. Rick Perry laughs at a question during the final keynote of  2014 TribFest.
Gov. Rick Perry laughs at a question during the final keynote of 2014 TribFest.  Bob Daemmrich

COLLEGE STATION — Like many college graduates, outgoing Gov. Rick Perry is looking for a job, and he allowed on Thursday that he's willing to travel, specifically to Iowa, New Hampshire and South Carolina — three states crucial in the presidential primaries. 

Quips were as close as Perry, who’s considering a 2016 presidential run, came to shedding more light on his intentions during a speech at a convocation of Texas A&M graduates. 

“I got started early on my resume,” said Perry. “Under objective I wrote: Highly motivated professional, seeking a position as chief executive of a large enterprise with good benefits and a really large personal jet.”

He also told the crowd he had experience overseeing “people who bicker a lot, otherwise known as legislators” and had a “well-worn veto pen.”

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Perry addressed December graduates from his alma mater, praising Texas A&M’s traditions and advocating for affordability in higher education. Perry said Texas needed more ideas like the $10,000 degree plan.

“Join in the cause to keep Texas A&M affordable and accessible for the next generation of Texans,” Perry said. “I think ideas that make college more affordable to students should not be a prohibited thought process.”

Perry also addressed an offer from the Texas A&M University System Board of Regents to rename one of the school's oldest and most iconic buildings after him, an issue that had stirred up some controversy. Earlier in the day, Perry had announced he was declining the honor. 

“There are places on this campus, like our most cherished traditions, that transcend any one individual,” Perry said. “The point of service, whether as a governor or a teacher, is not to make a name but to make a difference.” 

Disclosure: The Texas A&M University System and Texas A&M University are corporate sponsors of The Texas Tribune. A complete list of Tribune donors and sponsors can be viewed here.