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Sombrilla Mast


The University of Texas at San Antonio Online Magazine

Unraveling a Mystery

UTSA students braved the Belizean jungle to dig up clues that may one day unlock ancient secrets of the Maya.

On Tougher Turf

UTSA accepts an invitation to join Conference USA.

What Lies Beneath

After the worst oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico, signs of a larger, hidden impact are found beneath the ocean floor.

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The Paseo A Stroll Around Campus

Sweet Dreams
Forever Roadrunners

Retired Faculty Association members' love for UTSA lives on.

¡Viva Mariachi!

Performance class will get students out of the classroom and onto the stage.

Dress for Success
Dress for Success

Center provides interview training and a wardrobe.

You've got a Friend
You've Got a Friend

Student coaches help their peers navigate the stacks.

Sharing Business
Sharing Business

Micro-entrepreneurs in Latin America receive boost from the International Trade Center.

The Lipstick Effect
The Lipstick Effect

When it comes to choosing a mate, the decision for ovulating women comes down to hormones.

By the Numbers
In Brief
High Praise

UK-based Times Higher Education magazine ranking

Monkey Business

Anthropology doctoral student Anne Kwiatt spends summer in Singapore.

World-Class Partners

College of Public Policy named lead partner of SA2020.

Scholarly Recognition

Three UTSA professors and an alumnus selected as Fulbright Scholar recipients

Another First

Yvonne Katz '74 made a $1 million commitment to support the Office of Alumni Programs

From Labs to the Market

Center for Innovation in Drug Discovery

Water, Water, Anywhere?

UTSA's new Water Institute of Texas

Roadrunner Sports
Athlete Spotlight

Tyler Williamson, UTSA's record-breaking long-jumper—and hero

Sports Briefs

UTSA Athletics update

Community Uniting Our Alumni

Back Shed Startup
Back Shed Startup

Lifesaving technology born out of dissertation

Alumni Profiles
Honorable Service

Kim D. Denver, B.A. '88

Dishing it Up

Letty Holmbo, E.M.B.A. '04

Taking the Helm

Brian Woods, M.A. '88, Ed.D. '12

UTSA Alumni
Class Notes

Compilation of alumni submissions and reports from newspapers and other media outlets

In Memoriam

Editor's Note

Oh, how I miss college

The day I graduated from college was one of the happiest of my life. It wasn't so much out of a sense of completion, of achieving a life goal. It was much more basic—I was finally leaving.

Nostalgia is a file that removes the rough edges from the good old days.

- Doug Larson, Writer

No more all-nighters spent at the nearby open-all-night pancake house, trying to figure out the difference between a rock and a mineral. No more semester projects begun the day before they were due and finished 15 minutes before class was to start. No more worries about whether the C I got on my Fundamentals of Math final (yes, math was a tough one for me) would be enough to pass me out of the class.

I was finally free.

It's been 12 years since I slid my purple and white tassel to the left, and I've never looked back. My only connection to the place that was home and hell had been the monthly loan statement I consistently received (and still do).

But recently that has changed.

I'm homesick for college.

I look back and remember the all-nighters spent at the 24-hour pancake house only pretending to study, the nights spent goofing around with my friends, thinking about that semester project I really should start—but that I'll certainly start tomorrow.

I even giggle about my performance as a young Evita in my musical theater class, where I pranced around the stage with a suitcase. My prof told me he hated the performance so much that he passed me so I would never have to take his class again.

Oh, how I miss college.

I find as I get older and the gap widens between my undergrad experience and me, I feel more connected to my alma mater. I follow the football team and I even fly a TCU flag outside my home. The person I was a dozen years ago would never recognize the person I am today.

I kind of bleed purple—and I like it.

I still have those nightmares where I realize on the day of the final exam that I never attended math class. But now I think that if I could, I would choose to make that nightmare come true if it meant going back to college and living the good times all over again. Maybe.

Or maybe I don't have to. I work at a university, and with an office at the Main Campus, I'm fully immersed in the culture, the life, the rhythm of the place. I've discovered that I don't have to travel hundreds of miles to my alma mater just to experience school pride.

Here, everywhere I look, I see orange and blue shirts. As I pass through the John Peace Library, I see students clustered in study rooms, challenging each other and then laughing it off when the stress gets too high.

I love having lunch under the Sombrilla, where the sounds of diverse cultures mingle. As students at one table play my favorite '80s songs, students at another table speak with animation in a language I wish I knew, because it really sounds like they're having fun.

Students on skateboards whiz by. Couples hold hands on the way to class. I hear snatches of conversation about physics and the most recent football game. And I feel so much pride; I feel so connected.

I feel the energy that comes from being on a thriving college campus.

So maybe I am reliving my college days after all, but in an even better way. There are only deadlines, no exams. Even better, there's very little math.

And my closet is becoming crowded with all the orange and blue shirts and paraphernalia I am accumulating. I take my sons to football games, and every one of us has our special game-day shirt. We regularly chant "Go 'Runners" and even my 3-year-old knows the Roadrunner hand sign.

So, maybe I bleed orange and blue, as well as purple.

I think I need to buy another flag.


Signature Lety Laurel

Lety Laurel

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Jean Schnitz

Jean Schnitz, former president of the Texas Folklore Society, has performed at the annual Texas Folklife Festival since 1981. The festival, held at the UTSA Institute of Texan Cultures, marked its 41st anniversary this summer.


A close look at the frieze, or decorative band, on El Castillo in Xunantunich, Belize. El Castillo is the second largest structure in ancient and modern Belize.

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