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A Message from VPSA Sam Gonzales

“Pictured Above: Vice President for Student Affairs, Sam Gonzales” Pictured Above: Vice President for Student Affairs, Sam Gonzales

Welcome to a new academic year at UTSA.  Since this is the first Family Newsletter of the new academic year, I wanted to take this opportunity to share some information about what is included in the Division of Student Affairs.  Over the year, it will be my pleasure to let you know more about Student Affairs and the services we offer students, as well as highlight many UTSA accomplishments.

In addition, you can count on me to share some of the parental insight I have gained along the way having successfully taken the college journey with my two children. (It didn’t feel successful every single moment, just so you know – but we’ll get to that.)

So what is Student Affairs exactly?  The Division of Student Affairs at UTSA is a very broad organization including everything from enrollment management units like Undergraduate Admissions, Registrar, and Student Financial Aid and Enrollment Services to student services like Campus Recreation, University Career Services, Student Health Services and many more.  Traditional student life areas like Housing and Residence Life, Student Conduct, Student Activities and the Student Center for Community Engagement and Inclusion are also included in student affairs along with Athletics.  This broad portfolio of over 19 departments allows us the ability to maximize and streamline efforts for your student’s success.  Please let us know how we are doing.

The fall semester started with a blast. Our Roadrunner Days schedule of events were more successful than ever.  Our football team has gotten off to a great start and every day the campus is bustling with student organizations recruiting members, students socializing by the fountain and taking us up on our great free entertainment.  It’s an exciting time of year.  What has been your student’s favorite part of this academic year?  You may be interested in hearing more about what your student has been up to recently.  I find that opening with an open-ended question works wonders and seems non-threatening.  For instance:  I was reading about Roadrunner Days; what was your favorite part of that week?  In my experience, this perfect combination of specific and general question works wonders. It may not work the first time, so keep trying.  In the meantime, stay plugged in to us and we’ll keep you updated.

I am sharing two of my favorite “start of school” pictures with you.  The first is at our University Luncheon with some member of the Class of 2018. The second is the student section of our first home football game.  Their excitement was outstanding and contagious.  Encourage them to keep it up.  I know I will.

Best Wishes,


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2014 Family Weekend


Family Weekend is the perfect opportunity for families to reconnect with their students, visit campus, mix and mingle with UTSA faculty, staff, and other parents, catch a Roadrunner Football game, and so much more! A variety of family-friendly events will be held on Friday, October 24 and Saturday, October 25, 2014. For a full list of Family Weekend events please visit utsa.edu/family/events.html . We hope to see you there!

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Student Leadership Center – Grand Reopening


The UTSA Student Leadership Center hosted a ribbon cutting and grand reopening ceremony to kick off the start of a new year in their new office. The center facilitates and provides intentional and purposeful leadership encounters for undergraduate students of all classifications and majors through education, engagement and experience. The new location offers a larger space for students to come in to learn about the center, study, or engage in discussion with other student leadership. Guests can learn about the many opportunities offered by the UTSA Student Leadership Center including annual participation in the Civil Rights and Social Justice Experience, Texas Conference for Women, and the nationally recognized LeaderShape® Institute.

The Civil Rights and Social Justice Experience takes students on a journey through multiple states that played a crucial role in the Civil Rights Movement. The trip takes students from San Antonio, TX to New Orleans, LA to Birmingham, AL and then onto Memphis, TN. Students visit historical markers such as the Civil Rights Institute, 16th Street Baptist Church, Kelly Ingram Park and the National Civil Rights Museum. The trip is followed up with students participating in the MLK March back in San Antonio, TX.

The Texas Conference for Women is a one-day conference in Austin, Texas that is hosted by the first lady of Texas, Anita Perry. The conference offers incredible opportunities for business networking, professional development and personal growth.  It features nationally-recognized speakers who share their wisdom and expertise on a wide range of personal and professional development topics. 

The LeaderShape® Institute is an intensive, energizing, six-day educational experience designed to equip young adults to become extraordinary leaders. Each session of The LeaderShape® Institute is comprised of approximately 60-70 students. The Institute helps participants explore not only what they want to do, but who they want to be. We believe integrity is at the heart of leadership. As a result, the Institute creates space to identify core values and explore how individual choices have an impact on congruence and how we are perceived as leaders.

The new space is equipped to hold more staff and as the center continues to expand more students will have the opportunity to attend many of the leadership programs offered free to UTSA students that apply. If you or your student is interested in visiting, please stop by our new location in the University Center (UC1.00.40). Our contact information iswww.utsa.edu/slc and/or 210-458-7967

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Civil Rights and Social Justice Experience – Currently Accepting Applications

The Student Leadership Center and the Student Center for Community Engagement and Inclusion is currently accepting applications for the 2015 Civil Rights and Social Justice Experience. The program allows for UTSA students to leave the state of Texas and become immersed in the history of the Civil Rights Movement. For more information regarding the Experience and criteria to participate, please visit utsa.edu/slc/civil-rights-social-justice-experience.html.

The Movement (Version 2) - Student Leadership Center from UTSA Student Life on Vimeo.

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University Career Center – Save the Dates – Fall 2014 Events

The UTSA Career Center is a vital resource for current and former students. The Career Center provides career advising, career fairs, online mock interviews, on-campus interviews, and so much more! This fall, the Center is providing a plethora of events for students to attend. For more information about the events listed within the flyer above, students can visit RowdyJobs.com.

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The Office of Financial Aid and Enrollment Services’ Financial Literacy Program: Rowdy Cents

UTSA’s Financial Literacy program, Rowdy Cents, is a new money management program that offers free face-to-face meetings and presentations to discuss and teach money management skills to your students.  By assisting students to engage in successful money management techniques, Rowdy Cents strives to provide holistic wellness and overall graduation retention, free of charge.  These developed money management skills will not only apply while in college, but after graduation as well.  For more information, please contact the Rowdy Cents program.

Rowdy Cents
Student Financial Aid and Enrollment Services
(P) 210.458.2803(F) 210.458.2801
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Family Association Student Spotlight: Jerome Scott II

Name: Jerome Scott II
Hometown: Killen, TX-
Major: Multidisciplinary Studies
- Extracurricular Activities:VOICES, PRSSA, BSU, Rowdy Crew, Intervarsity Christian Fellowship, President-SOC, President-RHA, Secretary SGA, FTK

What tips would you give to parents to insure their student will succeed?

Understand that college students take a lot of time to find out about themselves. We no longer have the direct supervision so mistakes will be made, but we take them as learning opportunities. Remember to always be supportive of your students! Many times, my parents had to encourage me when I didn’t want to continue.

What was your biggest challenge transitioning to college?

My biggest challenge when transitioning to college was trying to figure out my place at UTSA and what groups I wanted to be in. In high school, I was with the same people growing up but I came to UTSA knowing only three people. I quickly found organizations that had the same beliefs as me so that I would have help transitioning. 

How were your time management skills?

When I began college, my time management skills were horrible. I wasn’t sure when to study and when to hang out with friends. As soon as I met with my professors, I realized that my academics should be my first priority and then anything else I wanted to do would come after.

How has UTSA impacted you since you have been here and what values will you take into your future from your Roadrunner experience?

UTSA has impacted me by showing me that there are many more opportunities out there when you look for them. I plan on going into Higher Education and working at a university, and I wouldn't know that this field was available if I didn't go to college. The strongest value that I have gained from my Roadrunner Experience is how to help others succeed and reach their full potential.  

Are there any favorite collegiate experiences or memories you have? 

My favorite experience has been the first ever football game. It was amazing to be in the Alamodome and hear the cheering from UTSA and the San Antonio community. I love that at UTSA, we can experience a lot of "firsts" that will be talked about for many years to come. 

What plans do you have after graduation?

After graduation, I plan on attending graduate school in order to pursue a Master’s Degree in Higher Education Administration. I would like to use this education and the skills I have gained as an undergrad in order to become a Student Affairs Professional. 

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UTSA Football: 2014 First Home Game

Following last Thursday’s home-opening, 26-23 setback to Arizona, UTSA (1-1) will look to get back on the winning track on Saturday when it concludes a season-opening stretch of three games in 16 days at Oklahoma State (1-1). The second all-time meeting between the programs is scheduled to kick off at 6 p.m. and it can be seen on FOX Sports Networks (FS Southwest in San Antonio).

The Roadrunners, who are 6-9 all-time following a loss, have performed well away from the Alamo City the last two-plus seasons, as they have posted nine wins in their last 13 road tilts dating back to the 2012 campaign.

To read more, please visit http://www.sportspagemagazine.com/content/fb/c-fb/art-c-fb/utsa-looks-to-rebound-on-saturday-night.shtml?60572

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Nominate a Freshmen for ROWDYS Camp


Know an UTSA freshmen who is interested in learning about their top strengths and meeting other new student freshmen? The Office of Orientation and Family Programs is offering an exciting opportunity for freshmen students to attend a FREE leadership and strengths building camp this October.  Freshmen must be NOMINATED to attend this camp by peers, faculty, staff, family, or themselves.  Please take some time to nominate a freshmen today!

ROWDYS Camp nominations are due by September 26, 2014.  More details can be found at http://utsa.edu/orientation/camps/rowdys/index.html

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Important Spring 2014 Dates

Saturday, October 11, 2014: Homecoming Football Game

Saturday, October 18 - Sunday, October, 19 2014: R.O.W.D.Y.S. Camp

Friday, October 24 - Saturday, October 25, 2014: Family Weekend

Thursday, November 27 - Saturday, November 29, 2014: Thanksgiving Holiday University Closed

Thursday, December 11, 2014: Student Study Day

Friday, December 12, 2014: Student Study Day

Saturday, December 13 - Friday, December 19, 2014: Final Exams

Thursday, December 24 - Friday, December 26, 2014: Winter Holiday University Closed

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Thank you for reading the Family Connection!