Tuesday, October 13, 2015


Local minority business program is best in nation for second year in a row

award presentation

Joe Urby Jr., president and CEO (left), and Bill Hernandez, COO, of Dependable Health Services

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(July 1, 2011)--For the second year in a row, the MBDA Business Center, a component of the UTSA Institute for Economic Development, has received the National Outstanding Performance Award.

The U.S. Department of Commerce Minority Business Development Agency (MBDA) made the announcement June 24 at the MBDA national training conference in Washington, D.C.

"We are thrilled to be the best in class, for the second year in a row," said Orestes Hubbard, director of the MBDA Business Center in San Antonio. "The credit goes to our hard-working staff and to the talent here at the UTSA Institute for Economic Development."

In 2010, clients of the San Antonio office of the MBDA Business Center (formerly known as the Minority Business Enterprise Center) secured more than $25 million in contracts and procurements and accessed more than $36 million in capital. The center served 117 new clients and helped create 238 jobs.

The majority of the MBDC Business Center clients are minority-owned businesses that are experiencing growth, especially through local federal contracting and sub-contracting opportunities, Hubbard said.

"Achievements like this help position UTSA as a Tier One university," said Robert McKinley, UTSA associate vice president for economic development. "Our goal is top-tier performance, versus our peers on a national level. This is a wonderful example of how we help UTSA create economic opportunity for our community."

One company that has become an advocate for San Antonio's MBDA Business Center is Dependable Health Services.

President/CEO Joe Urby credits the UTSA center with transforming his company from a six-figure revenue business to a multi-million dollar one. Urby said that from 1996 to 2007, Dependable Health Services had 20 employees providing medical staffing for local and state agencies. Revenue was about $400,000.

In 2008, the company began working with what was then called the Minority Business Enterprise Center on an application for the SBA 8(a) certification. The certification enabled the company to compete for various federal contracts. The process took about nine months.

Today, Dependable Health Services provides a variety of medical support staff to Department of Defense facilities around the country, including the Wounded Warrior Transition Brigade at Walter Reed Army Medical Center. With nearly 100 employees and revenues between $4 and $5 million, the company has a bright future.

"That kind of growth would never have happened without going through the 8(a) certification program," Urby said.

The MBDA Business Center is one of 13 programs and centers comprising the UTSA Institute for Economic Development.

"Being a part of an economic development institute that promotes collaboration has contributed to our ongoing success," Hubbard said. "We've been able to leverage opportunities with Startech and the Small Business Development Center programs located here as well."


The University of Texas at San Antonio Institute for Economic Development is dedicated to creating jobs, growing businesses and fostering economic development. Its 12 centers and programs provide professional business advising, technical training, research, and strategic planning for entrepreneurs, business owners and community leaders.

Programs serve San Antonio and the Texas-Mexico border area as well as regional, national and international stakeholders. Together with federal, state and local governments, and private businesses, the UTSA Institute for Economic Development fosters economic and community development in support of UTSA's community engagement mission.



Oct. 14, 5:30 p.m.

Architecture as Rendered Society

The UTSA College of Architecture, Construction and Planning, in partnership with AIA San Antonio’s Latinos in Architecture, presents architect Andrés Jaque, founder of the Office for Political Innovation, an architectural practice dually based in New York and Madrid.
Buena Vista Building, Aula Canaria Lecture Hall (BV 1.328), Downtown Campus

Oct. 15, 6 p.m.

Take Back the Night 2015

The UTSA Women’s Studies Institute invites you to Take Back the Night, an international initiative to raise awareness and empower survivors while educating allies through a march, poetry, and testimonios. This is a gender-inclusive movement to shatter the silence surrounding sexual and domestic violence.
Sombrilla Plaza, Main Campus

Oct. 19, 10 a.m.-6 p.m.

UTSA Grad Fest Fall 2015

Grad Fest is an event designed to prepare you for commencement while celebrating your achievement. You will have the opportunity to purchase commencement regalia, order class rings, diploma frames, explore graduate school opportunities, learn about successful Stafford loan repayment and discuss career outcomes.
H-E-B University Center Ballroom, Main Campus

Oct. 20, 10 a.m.-3 p.m.

UTSA Grad Fest Fall 2015

Grad Fest is an event designed to prepare you for commencement while celebrating your achievement. You will have the opportunity to purchase commencement regalia, order class rings, diploma frames, explore graduate school opportunities, learn about successful Stafford loan repayment and discuss career outcomes.
H-E-B University Center Ballroom, Main Campus

Oct. 20-21, 9 a.m. - 3 p.m.

SECC Book Sale

Looking for a good read? Shop for yourself or for gifts and help change a life at the same time. Browse and buy children’s stories, novels and more at the 2015 SECC Book Sale.
Sombrilla Plaza, Main Campus

Oct. 21, 7-8:30 p.m.

Texas Water Symposium

The Texas Water Symposium will take a close look at the SAWS/Vista Ridge pipeline project. The program will feature a conversation about the regional, financial and ecological considerations of the 142-mile pipeline. The event is free and open to the public.
Main Building (MB 0.106), Main Campus

Oct. 22, 6 p.m.

Phi Kappa Phi Last Lecture

What would Dr. John Bartkowski say if it were his last lecture? The UTSA professor of sociology will speak about “The Power of Listening” in this annual event sponsored by the UTSA chapter of Phi Kappa Phi. A reception will follow.
Denman Room (UC 2.201.28), Main Campus

Oct. 27, 11:30 a.m.

Lecture by Composer Larry Groupe

The UTSA Music Department presents Emmy-award winning Composer Larry Groupe. Groupe has composed music for films such as "The Contender," "Straw Dogs" and "Miami Vice," and TV shows such as "Star Trek: The Next Generation," "Ren and Stimpy" and "American Gladiators." Lecture is free and open to the public.
Arts Building (ART 2.03.15-18), Main Campus

Oct. 29, 5:30 p.m.

White Bound: Nationalists, Anti-Racists and the Shared Meanings of Race

The Dean's Distinguished Lecture Series continues with Dr. Matthew Hughey, a scholar of race, racism and racial inequality.
Buena Vista Building (BV 1.328), Downtown Campus

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Did You Know?

UTSA writes the book on all-digital libraries

As touch screens and e-books demand more and more attention from both casual readers and scholars, many people say the handwriting is on the wall for the printed page.

At UTSA, the handwriting is on the wall for a library that doesn't have any printed books.

Since March 2010, the bookless library in the Applied Engineering and Technology Building has given UTSA students an innovative way to read, research and work with each other to solve problems.

With ultra-modern furniture and a décor featuring desktop computers, scanners and LCD screens, the AET Library is designed to engage students in an online format. But it also offers group study niches and study rooms with whiteboards and glass walls on which students can write. The space encourages teamwork, communications and problem solving for the next generation of scientists and professional engineers.

Did you know? The UTSA AET Library is the nation's first completely bookless library on a college or university campus. It served as a model for Bexar County's first-in-the-nation public bookless library system and one of its branches, the Dr. Ricardo Romo BiblioTech.

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