January 25, 2013
The start of 2013 brings a new session of the Texas Legislature, with lawmakers gathering to address the state's many needs including higher education. I will be spending time in Austin during the session meeting with legislators to help them understand UTSA's needs and point of view. I also wanted to share some of those thoughts with you.
There are four key areas I am focused on: funding for faculty and student support programs, paying for new facilities to support our student population, financial aid resources for students, and state matching funds to attract more research initiatives. These directly affect student access and success.
Currently, UTSA has a student-faculty ratio of 26:1. UTSA's enrollment has grown by more than 39 percent over the last decade, placing a significant strain on available resources. Greater funding would help us hire new faculty and expand support services that enhance student success.
Another important issue is how we pay for new facilities. As we advance to Tier One status, it is vital that we have the classrooms and laboratories to accommodate enrollment growth. UTSA was built for 21,000 students, but we now have more than 30,000 students. We are asking the Legislature to approve revenue bonds to provide a much-needed $92 million experimental science instructional building.
Last biennium, UTSA experienced a 30 percent reduction in state-funded TEXAS grants, which provide student aid. With 70 percent of our students receiving financial support, we are hopeful that TEXAS grants funding will be restored.
Finally, we are seeking additional state funding through the Texas Research Incentive Program, or TRIP, to help match private financial gifts used to recruit faculty, provide graduate fellowships and build research capacity. This is critical for our progression toward Tier One research status.
These are a few of the issues of importance to our university and our city that we will be watching in the days ahead. I am tremendously grateful to the Bexar County Legislative Delegation for all its efforts on behalf of UTSA and to the entire San Antonio community for its continuing advocacy. Investing in UTSA is investing in our community.
The University of Texas at San Antonio
Dr. Gaye Theresa Johnson, associate professor of Chicana and Chicano Studies, and African American Studies, at the University of California at Los Angeles is the guest speaker at this free, open event. Johnson is also the author of "Spaces of Conflict Sounds of Solidarity: Music, Race, and Spacial Entitlement in Los Angeles" and "Futures of Black Radicalism."
University Center, Denman Room (UC 02.01.28), Main Campus
The UTSA Consortium for Social Transformation; African American Studies Program presents guest speaker Dr. Gaye Theresa Johnson, associate professor of Chicana and Chicano Studies, and African American Studies, University of California at Los Angelesand author of "Spaces of Conflict Sounds of Solidarity: Music, Race, and Spacial Entitlement in Los Angeles" and "Futures of Black Radicalism." The event is free and open to the public.
University Center, Denman Room (UC 2.01.28), Main Campus
The UTSA Honors College hosts a sneak CineFestival preview of the documentary Somos Lengua, a new documentary about the Mexican hip hop scene. Jim Mendiola, the CineFestival Director, will screen the movie and present a festival overview.
University Center, Bexar Room (UC 1.102), Main Campus
Grab your friends, family, kids and dog for this annual fun run on the UTSA Main Campus benefititng the UTSA Alumni Association.
Convocation Center, Main Campus
Join the Department of Interdisciplinary Learning and Teaching for the 13th annual Storytelling Festival. The festival will feature keynote speaker Carolina Quiroga-Stultz, a Colombian Storyteller and journalist. This event is free and open to the public.
Main Building, ground floor, Main Campus
The IDS Colloquium showcases the excellent scholarship done by the IDS students in the College of Education and Human Development at UTSA. In addition, this event also honors the legacy of Dr. Marian Martinello.
Business Building, University Room (BB 2.06.04), Main Campus
The Department of Biology and the Be the Match Team will collaborate to engage and educate our students in the importance of a life saving donation through peripheral blood stem cells and a marrow harvest.
UC Paseo and Central Plaza, Main Campus
UTSA welcomes the Italian-born duo Bandini-Chiacchiaretta. They've toured the world performing Argentine Tango music on guitar and bandoneon, the instrument of Astor Piazzolla. Tickets are $10 or free with UTSA Student I.D.
Arts Building, Recital Hall (ARTS 2.03.02), 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.