United to Serve is a system-wide volunteer initiative involving UT System students, faculty, staff, alumni, and student organizations in an effort to engage and mobilize thousands of volunteers in their community. It has also become of one UTSA's longest standing volunteer tradition and this year will be the 11th year that the Student Center for Community Engagement and Inclusion has sponsored the event.
This year The University of Texas at San Antonio has been recognized not only on the President's Higher Education Community Service Honor Roll but also by receiving the distinguished Carnegie Foundation's prestigious Community Engagement Classification. It was through volunteer initiatives like United to Serve that UTSA was able to receive these commendations.
The upcoming day of service, planned for Saturday, April 11, 2015 will feature volunteer opportunities across San Antonio and surrounding communities. Projects will include community gardens, painting youth centers, landscaping, making educational packets, arts and crafts projects, and many more!
A kickoff to United to Serve will take place on Friday, April 10 in the HEB University Center Ballroom at 12:30PM with food, giveaways, and special guest speakers. To be notified when registration for United to Serve will begin, please email firstname.lastname@example.org. Registration should open the week of March 16, 2015. Volunteers can sign up as individuals or as groups; faculty, staff, students, alumni, family and friends are welcome to participate.
Inspired, Be Impactful, Make a Difference!
The Student Center for Community Engagement and Inclusion held its annual Black Heritage Banquet on February 26th, 2015 which was led by the hard work and dedication of the 2015 Black Heritage Month Planning Committee. Planning committee members included Sam Ayoade, Tashavia Beverly-Prince, La'Tia Blue, Keitra Bruner, Alika Carter, Paula Celis, Alexandria Deal, Jasmine Gatlin, Christina Jack, Destiny Jones, Kiana Lalau, Alaina Lopez, Enrica Martey, Mia Mitchell, Ediri Nesiama, Raven Thomas-Talley, Committee Chair, Courtney Hunter and Erika Garcia, Advisor. The Banquet included a total of 369 faculty, staff, and student participants.
The theme for this year's banquet was A Cultured Community is a Thriving Community: Know Your Roots. The theme serves as a reminder of the rich heritage of the Black community and how young leaders, like our UTSA students, are leading this commemoration to music, culture, and history. Tayhija Martin sang the first verse to the Black National Anthem, Lift Every Voice. Jyron Joseph, T'Andre Smith and Derek Bell sang a moving medley of What's Going On and Lean on Me, and the Black Student Union Dance Team gave a lyrical performance to Wade in the Water.
The evening's keynote speaker was Andrea Hardeman who spoke to UTSA students about the importance of commemorating Black heritage and of remembering to pay tribute to the struggle, history, flourishment, mu-sic, culture, and our futures. She also emphasized the importance of roots and how we move forward to-wards the improvement and enhancement of our lives because of these roots.
CaShonda Henderson, last year's recipient of the Outstanding Black Student Leadership Award, announced this year's winner, Korede Osifuwa! Korede was recognized because of her leadership and dedication to UTSA and her fellow Roadrunners. Korede was nominated more than once and is described as a "joyful leader" because she brings energy, enthusiasm, and commitment to the activities she is involved in.