Wednesday, February 10, 2016

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Commencement Close-Up: UTSA's Kim McClurg earns degree despite life's obstacles

Kim McClurg and children

Kim McClurg and her children

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(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.

 

 

Events
Feb. 9, 11 a.m. - 1 p.m. & 6 - 9 p.m.

Rowdy Gras 2016

The UTSA community is invited to attend the 3rd annual Rowdy Gras celebration! This year Rowdy Gras includes a daytime event from 11 a.m. -1 p.m. with a free food tasting and music on the UC Paseo. The main event takes place from 6 - 9 p.m. in the UC Lawn. The event includes free food, live jazz music, activities and giveaways.
University Center Paseo & Lawn, UTSA Main Campus

Feb. 10, 5:30 p.m.

UTSA College of Architecture, Construction and Planning 2015-16 Speaker Series

The UTSA College of Architecture, Construction and Planning’s 2015-16 Speaker Series continues with Dana Cuff, Ph.D., a professor of architecture and urbanism at the University of California, Los Angeles. In her talk, Cuff will discuss new forms of “studio” and new types of practices. Free and open to the public.
Aula Canaria Lecture Hall (BV 1.328), UTSA Downtown Campus

Feb. 13, 10 a.m. - 5 p.m.

29th annual Asian Festival - Year of the Monkey

The UTSA Institute of Texan Cultures invites Texas and Texans to the Asian Festival. What began as a traditional family reunion for the Chinese New Year has expanded to include other Asian communities and participants, showcasing their unique culture and traditions.
The UTSA Institute of Texan Cultures

Feb. 13, 1 p.m.

2016 Interdisciplinary Studies Colloquium

Join the UTSA Department of Interdisciplinary Learning and Teaching in celebrating interdisciplinary inquiry at the 2016  Interdisciplinary Studies Colloquium.  The colloquium will include a panel of faculty and recent doctoral graduate and a showcase of the best IDS undergraduate inquiry projects of the year 2015. The event is free and open to the public.
Business Building (BB 2.06.04), UTSA Main Campus

Feb. 17, 5:30 p.m.

CACP Speaker Series continueswith Cesar Pelli

The UTSA College of Architecture, Construction and Planning (CACP) welcomes renowned architect Cesar Pelli as part of the CACP’s 2015-16 Speaker Series. Pelli is founder and Senior Principal of the New Haven, Conn. firm Pelli Clarke Pelli Architects. In his talk, “Becoming an Architect,” Pelli will present and discuss projects that were critical steps in his career.
Buena Vista Theater (BV 1.326), Downtown Campus

Feb. 23, 5:30 p.m.

African-American Social Welfare Pioneers Responding to Community Needs

The UTSA College of Public Policy presents the Dean's Distinguished Lecture Series featuring Dr. Iris Carlton-LaNey, Professor of the School of Social Work at the University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill. Dr. Iris Carlton LaNey will speak to the UTSA community about the role and impact of African-Americans in the social work profession.
Buena Vista Theater (BV 1.326), Downtown Campus

Feb. 23, 5:30 p.m.

African-American Social Welfare Pioneers Responding to Community Needs

The UTSA College of Public Policy presents the Dean's Distinguished Lecture Series featuring Dr. Iris Carlton-LaNey, Professor of the School of Social Work at the University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill. Dr. Carlton-LaNey will speak to the UTSA community about the role and impact of African-Americans in the social work profession.
Buena Vista Theater (BV 1.326), Downtown Campus

Feb. 23, 7 p.m.

Presentation and Book Signing with Luis Carlos Montalvan

Please join us for a presentation and book signing by Luis Carlos Montalván (Fmr. Capt., USA), author of the New York Times Bestseller Until Tuesday and the international award-winning childrens book Tuesday Tucks Me In. His books will be available for purchase at the UTSA Bookstore. This event is free and open to the public.
Southwest Room (DB 1.124), Downtown Campus

Feb. 25, 6 p.m.

12th Annual Black Heritage Gala

The 12th Annual Black Heritage Gala is a formal event which includes a student performance, keynote remarks by Michael Brown, an award presentation, dinner and dancing. Tickets are $10 for UTSA students and $15 for all other guests. Tickets are on sale now at Roadrunner Express. Contact (210) 458-4770 for more information.
H-E-B University Center Ballroom, Main Campus

Feb. 27, 9 a.m.

Cultural Contrasts in Latin America

The UTSA Institute of Texan Cultures will host a free workshop focusing on teaching Latin American culture and geography for students seeking their teacher certification. The workshop includes free resources for teaching Latin American subject matter as well as presentations on language, identity, music, geography, and political and developmental history, and a special educators’ tour of the museum’s Los Tejanos exhibit. Free with registration.
The UTSA Institute of Texan Cultures (ITC 3.01.02)


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