(July 29, 2011)--San Antonio native Sarah Lucero, anchor of KENS TV's 6 and 10 p.m. newscasts, took some time away from the station this week to chat with young students participating in the San Antonio Prefreshman Engineering Program (PREP) at The University of Texas at San Antonio.
Founded in 1979, PREP encourages middle and high school students, especially minority and female students, to pursue careers in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM). The curriculum, which teaches abstract reasoning and problem solving skills, is delivered over four summers through lectures, seminars and hands-on activities that allow students to learn and apply advanced STEM concepts. Topics include, but are not limited to, mathematics, problem solving, engineering, physics and technical writing.
"Every summer, you have a choice about how to spend your time," Lucero told the students. "You have chosen to spend it to improve your mind, get ahead and have fun while you're at it."
Lucero first enrolled in PREP the summer before she began seventh grade. She had never set foot on a college campus, and nobody in her family had graduated from college. But, she was interested in science and medicine, so she gave it a try. She enjoyed the experience so much that she went on to complete a second summer in the academically intense program. Her oldest son, Satchel, is now a PREP I alumnus.
"You come here and you find out that there are really smart kids -- some smarter than you -- all across the city," Lucero told the PREP students. "The competition is tough. You have to raise the bar. So, when you're choosing your course load in your senior year of high school, choose the hardest classes. You have to go above and beyond what is required and what your neighbors are doing. The higher you go, the better your job will be and the smarter the people around you will be."
As a PREP student, Lucero did just that. By the time she reached high school and college, she was well prepared for much of the science and mathematics curriculum she encountered.
Following Lucero's presentation, students asked her a variety of questions about the development of stories, the use of video in newscasts, her daily schedule, her rise through the ranks of media and safety on the job.
Regardless of the career path they choose, Lucero gives all of the students the same advice: "Don't ever take the easy road. Take the road that will make you the smartest, brightest, most creative person you can be."
>> You can watch Sarah Lucero on KENS-5 weekdays or follow her on her KENS-5 blog Facebook (Sarah Lucero) or Twitter (@SarahLucero).
The annual Center for Innovation, Technology and Entrepreneurship (CITE) 100K Venture Competition and Exposition will be held on the Main Campus on Dec. 1. Twenty-eight teams from across the university will exhibit their project; six teams will compete for a prize pool of more than $100,000 in funding to launch their new venture / company. More than 650 students have participated in launching new technology ventures.
Biotechnology, Sciences and Engineering (BSE 2.102), Main Campus
This concert features 50 community children performing music in the UTSA Downtown String Project Winter Concert. The children, led by UTSA music students studying to be music teachers, will join together in playing the Theme from Batman at their concert. The Batman of San Antonio, a local celebrity figure, will make an appearance at the concert. This event is free.
Buena Vista Theatre, Downtown Campus
Graduate student uses storytelling to highlight important issues facing children
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.
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.
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