(Dec. 15, 2010)--Overcoming adversity has been a way of life for 38-year-old Kim McClurg. As a child, she beat leukemia. As an adult, she is raising three children, home schooling her eldest son and tutoring athletes -- all while being a student in the UTSA Honors College. At 2 p.m., Friday, Dec. 17, McClurg will receive her bachelor's degree in history in the fall 2010 commencement ceremony for the Honors College.
McClurg's accomplishments are even more impressive, considering the fact that she achieved them while her husband has been in prison for the last four years. Her journey began shortly after his incarceration, when she was living in Irving. At a speaking engagement by Maya Angelou, the renowned poet recited her poem "And Still I Rise," and the words inspired McClurg to look beyond her circumstances and move forward with her life.
"I was responsible for three children, and knew I did not have the education I needed to support them," said McClurg.
McClurg decided to move to San Antonio and enrolled at Northwest Vista College, where she excelled, earning an associate degree in history. She continued her education by transferring to UTSA to pursue a bachelor's degree in history. She accepted an invitation to join the UTSA Honors College, and after enrolling in her first course in African-American history, became impassioned with the discipline.
"I don't think we realize how desensitized we are to the injustices inflicted on people because of the color of their skin, still in force today," said McClurg. "Until you gain knowledge, unless you seek out knowledge, then you just don't know."
McClurg credits her faith, family and mentors, UTSA Honors College faculty members Laguana Gray and Ann Eisenberg, for assisting her along the way.
"Kim is an exceptional student, a very hard worker and demands nothing less than perfection from herself in the classroom," said Eisenberg, UTSA associate professor of psychology and associate dean of the Honors College. "She is motivated by passion and has loved the way college opened her eyes to a new understanding of the world and of the community and country in which she lives."
McClurg earned her degree with the assistance of financial aid and the Carlos and Malu Alvarez Scholarship, which she received twice.
"UTSA instilled strength and confidence in me, knowing that in spite of everything, the strength, faith and sheer determination of will to accomplish my goals propelled me forward," said McClurg.
McClurg was accepted into the UTSA master's program in history and plans to obtain a doctoral degree and teach at a university.
Take Back the Night is an international initiative to end violence. The event begins with banner making, followed by a march, presentations and poetry reading.
Sombrilla, Main Campus
Members of the UTSA community have published “Adapt and Overcome: Essays of the Student Veteran Experience,” an important book to help active duty military and veterans successfully transition to college life. The event includes a panel discussion with UTSA alumni student veterans who contributed chapters to the book. Guests can also purchase the book. All proceeds benefit the UTSA Student Veteran Association.
Business Building, University Room (BB 2.06.04), Main Campus
The Graduate School is hosting a panel discussion for all of our current students, alumni and members of the San Antonio community who are interested in learning more about graduate education.
Graduate School and Research Building (GSR 1.204), Main Campus
The annual UTSA Graduate fair gives students an opportunity to meet representatives who can provide the information on admission requirements, fellowship opportunities, and other key information.
University Center, Main Campus
A recruiter will speak to potential candidates for the Archer program. The Archer program has helped students land successful careers in public service.
Durango Building (DB 2.208), Downtown Campus
Canadian scholar Jasmin Hristov will present a lecture on paramilitarism, complex type of politically-motivated violence in different parts of Latin America. This presentation will explain paramilitary violence as a tool of economic globalization.
Buena Vista St. Bldg., Aula Canaria Lecture Hall (BV 1.328), Downtown Campus
The UTSA College of Engineering Technology Symposium showcases innovative student projects and research performed across multiple disciplines including engineering, science and business. The public is invited.
H-E-B UC Ballroom (HUC 1.104), 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.