(Oct. 9, 2009)--The University of Texas at San Antonio is joining 15 other UT System institutions in a new $250,000 University of Texas System initiative designed to transform undergraduate education. As a part of the Virtual Learning Community Initiative, the UT System purchased a 50-island archipelago for its components to share in the virtual world of Second Life.
>> To learn more about the Virtual Learning Community Initiative, the UTSA community is invited to attend a demonstration at 9 a.m., Friday, Oct. 16 in the Main Building Auditorium (0.106) on the UTSA Main Campus.
"The purpose of this project is to stimulate creative approaches to instruction that increase student access and success while being cost efficient or reducing instructional costs at all 16 campuses," said Leslie Jarmon, UT-Austin senior lecturer in the Division of Innovation and Instructional Assessment and project organizer.
The project is the largest higher education, systemwide project of it's kind in Second Life. Under the initiative, UTSA administrators, faculty staff and students will benefit from the virtual interrelated tracks put in place.
A systemwide virtual collaborative learning community of faculty, researchers, staff and administrators will communicate in the virtual world. At the course level, the project allows students to improve the learning experiences and opportunities for individual graduate students and other interested learners. In August, participants from all UT System institutions met in Austin to review the grant and assorted initiatives. There will be bi-monthly virtual meetings via Second Life until the grant ends in July 2010.
"This is the most exciting project I've ever been associated with in more than 30 years in the higher education arena," said Joe DeCristoforo, UTSA assistant vice president and registrar. "Dr. Jarmon is an inspiration to me and my project team, and we look forward to working with her and learning about how to exploit this fascinating technology."
The UTSA project team members include James Adair, Sara Bordelon, Carmen Fies, Lee Gildon, LaVonne Grandy, James Groff, Linda Lindsey, Pat McGee, Barbara Millis, Malena Salazar, Tara Schmidt, Crystal Sperber, Lloyd Swarz, Eduardo Valenzuela, Mimi Yu and Alfredo Zavala.
Through the month of February, the UTSA community is invited to join student organizations, colleges and departments at events that commemorate the African American people, places and events that have paved the way for racial equality.
The student organization MuTe (Music Technology) will be hosting a recital that's open to the public.
Arts Building Recital Hall (ART 2.03.02), Main Campus
The UTSA Department of English presents this year's Brackenridge Distinguished Visiting Lecturer, Lawrence Venuti. Venuti is a professor of English at Temple University.
Business Building University Room (BB 2.06.04), Main Campus
Diploma Dash is a fast, certified 5k course for runners and a scenic route around Main Campus for walkers, strollers and dogs! There are individual and team prizes. Benefits UTSA students through the UTSA Alumni Association scholarship program.
UTSA Main Campus
Enjoy music, food and socializing during this fundraising event benefiting the San Antonio Symphony League for the Youth Concert Series and the ITC for its ongoing educational mission.
UTSA Institute of Texan Cultures, Hemisfair Campus
UTSA Libraries will host Robert Rico, M.P.A., Department of Criminal Justice, for his presentation "Restorative Justice: A Relational Approach to Civic Discourse." Pizza will be provided to students while supplies last.
Buena Vista Street Building (BVB 2.309), Downtown Campus
Spend an evening stirring your curiosity during these monthly talks featuring some of UTSA’s most renowned faculty, and learn how the latest research in their fields applies to our daily lives. This month's speaker is Francine Romero, UTSA associate professor and associate dean of the College of Public Policy.
The Historic Guadalupe Theatre, 1301 Guadalupe St., San Antonio
Meet with 60+ representatives from Texas and out-of-state schools to get information on becoming a competitive health professions applicant and information about the application and transition process.
Student Union Denman Ballroom (SU 2.01.28), Main Campus
The University of Texas at San Antonio is dedicated to the advancement of knowledge through research and discovery, teaching and learning, community engagement and public service. As an institution of access and excellence, UTSA embraces multicultural traditions and serves as a center for intellectual and creative resources as well as a catalyst for socioeconomic development and the commercialization of intellectual property - for Texas, the nation and the world.
To be a premier public research university, providing access to educational excellence and preparing citizen leaders for the global environment.
We encourage an environment of dialogue and discovery, where integrity, excellence, inclusiveness, respect, collaboration and innovation are fostered.