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'Great Conversation!' raises $148,430 for Honors College scholarships


>> View a photo gallery of Great Conversation!
Top photo: Event co-chair Harriett Romo and UTSA President Ricardo Romo
Bottom photo: UTSA Honors College students at fundraiser
(Photos by Mark McClendon)

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(March 15, 2012) -- The University of Texas at San Antonio Honors College raised $148,430 for student scholarships, research stipends, and leadership and global learning opportunities at the "Great Conversation!" fundraiser Wednesday, Feb. 29 at the Institute of Texan Cultures.

The greater San Antonio community gathered for discussion on a variety of topics. Community leaders and local scholars led the discussions, which varied by table and covered a variety of stimulating topics.

At one table, businessman James Avery led a discussion on "How to Get Started in the Jewelry Business." At another table, UTSA scholar John Phillip Santos discussed "The Many Meanings of Mexican Antiquity: Recent Discoveries in Mexican Archaeology." The evening's 35 other topics included "Growth Strategies for a Small Business," "What is School Readiness?," "And They're Off: Campaign 2012," "Behind the Curtain: How Do Symphonies Plan a Music Festival?" and "What Makes a Good Beer?"

Approximately two dozen students from the UTSA Honors College attended the event, including John Lira '12, a U.S. military veteran who transferred to UTSA from San Antonio College to pursue a degree in political science for a career in public service. Recently, Lira participated in the Public Policy and International Affairs Program at Princeton University. He also travelled to Washington, D.C., to participate in the Archer Fellowship Program and currently is working on his honors thesis, which focuses on the labels used to define Mexican drug trafficking organizations.

"UTSA is blessed with extremely supportive donors who understand that our students need every advantage we can provide them," said Harriett Romo, UTSA professor of sociology and Great Conversation! co-chair. "We are so grateful to them for supporting our UTSA Honors College students through events like Great Conversation."

Great Conversation! was co-chaired by Romo, UTSA President Ricardo Romo, Kathy Acock, Cathy Bodenstedt '11, Bonnie Reed, Stu Schlossberg and Mario Vazquez '06. Sponsors included Alpha Building Corp., AT&T Foundation, Coca-Cola Bottling Co., Pat Flynn, Joeris General Contractors Ltd. and others. View the complete sponsor list at the Great Conversation! website.



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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.

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