(April 10, 2013) -- The University of Texas at San Antonio has been selected by former U.S. Rep. Charles A. "Charlie" Gonzalez to receive his congressional papers as part of the UTSA Libraries Special Collections.
Gonzalez's collection consists of constituent correspondence, speeches, videotapes of interviews, press releases and legislative files relating to appropriations, energy, housing, labor, transportation and Social Security. The materials will be made available to congressional scholars, students and researchers interested in examining his impact during his 14 years in Congress.
"As a proud San Antonian, I can't think of a better place than UTSA to offer my congressional papers as a resource for generations of students and scholars," said Gonzalez. "I'm pleased that my legacy as a public servant of the citizens of San Antonio and Texas will now be widely accessible."
"Representative Gonzalez's congressional papers help to document important chapters in the histories of San Antonio, Texas, congressional policymaking and Latino politics," said UTSA President Ricardo Romo. "They will provide researchers in multiple disciplines including political science, public administration and history with irreplaceable information about the evolving relationship between the people of San Antonio and their government. Acquisitions of this caliber play a role in the university's ascent to Tier One research status."
During his seven terms in Congress, Gonzalez served on the Financial Services, Small Business, Homeland Security, House Administration, Judiciary, and Energy and Commerce committees. He chaired the task force to determine the winner of the contested Florida Congressional District 13 election. From 2011 to 2012, he served as chair of the Congressional Hispanic Caucus and the Congressional Hispanic Caucus Institute.
Gonzalez's congressional legacy will have lasting national importance, according to UTSA political science professor Walter Wilson, who facilitated the acquisition. "Congressman Gonzalez's influence, both as a representative of his constituents in San Antonio and on major national issues like immigration reform, will be visible for years to come. And, just as his leadership will have lasting impacts, this archive will have enduring relevance for scholars," Wilson said.
Gonzalez's papers will be housed in the UTSA Libraries UTSA Libraries Special Collections, which houses treasures such as rare books, company archives, photographs and other one-of-a-kind historical items documenting the people, history, life and literature of San Antonio and South Texas. Strengths of the collections include architecture and urban development, San Antonio authors, Mexican cookery, women and women's history, Mexican-American activism and the Texas-Mexico border region.
"Our efforts to acquire, preserve and digitize unique materials support the scholarly work of students for generations to come," said Mark Shelstad, head of UTSA Libraries Special Collections. "We are proud to preserve Congressman Gonzalez's legacy and to sustain the university's teaching, research and outreach mission."
UTSA prides itself on giving students a well-rounded education. Combining a top-tier academic program with opportunities for personal growth prepares students to compete in a global economy. And that's not all. They learn to be informed and engaged citizens as well. At the heart of that academic program is an award-winning core curriculum.
For four consecutive years, UTSA has received an A-rating from the American Council of Trustees and Alumni for the caliber of its core curriculum. According to ACTA, UTSA requires its students to take six of the seven courses deemed "crucial" to a well-rounded education: composition, literature, U.S. government or history, economics, mathematics and science. Only a handful of other institutions in the U.S. are giving students these tools, which are needed to succeed in careers and the community.
Did you know? UTSA is one of only three Texas institutions and 23 in the United States to receive the highest rating for its core curriculum in the 2014-2015 edition of the ACTA's "What Will They Learn?" report.
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