Wednesday, September 02, 2015

Meet a Roadrunner: Love of Reading Brings Houston Native to UTSA Libraries

storefronts

Lara Lawal

Share this Story

(Nov. 27, 2013) -- Meet Omolara-Jara Lawal. The Houston native overcame significant obstacles before finding success at UTSA.

Lara was four years old when her mother died of leukemia. Soon after, her father sent her and her three brothers to live in Nigeria with an uncle and aunt. Her oldest brother stayed in Houston with her father.

"I don't think he was overburdened but I think it would have been a lot to take care of five kids," she says.

While in Nigeria, Lara learned to speak her father's native language, Yoruba, as well as some French. She also assimilated to the region's strict cultural norms.

"There is a lot of discipline in Nigeria," she says.

After skipping the fifth and sixth grades, Lara returned to Houston at age 10.

"I was teased a little," she says. "You know kids, when they see someone they're not used to seeing."

Lawal, though, found her own world in the library.

"I love to read," gushes the UTSA business finance major.

When she started at UTSA, she says she frequently visited the John Peace Library. When she saw the library had an opening for a peer coach — student workers trained to help other students with library-related inquires — she jumped at the opportunity.

Lara says her job is exciting and rewarding because students are always thankful for assistance. Tyler Dunn, a library assistant who supervises the peer coaches, said Lara is always very helpful to students.

"Lara's outgoing personality and leadership skills make her very effective at sharing her library know-how with other students," Dunn said.

Lawal said she enjoys helping others at the Libraries, and hopes to build on her skills by working for Teach for America after she graduates.

Lara says she misses her family very much, but she hopes she's made them proud.

"I know my dad always wants what is best for me," she said.

------------------------------

Do you know someone in the UTSA community with a great story to share? Email us at social@utsa.edu, and we will consider your submission for our next installment of Meet a Roadrunner.

Story Courtesy of Stephanie Sanchez and Alice Frederick, UTSA Libraries

 

 

 

Did You Know?

Football standouts make Roadrunner history

For Ashaad Mabry and Triston Wade, football is not just a passing fancy. Both players were part of the UTSA football program almost from the beginning. When UTSA opens the 2015 season Thursday at Arizona, it will be the first time the Roadrunners take the field without them. But Mabry and Wade will still be playing football; their uniforms will just be a different color.

Mabry, a defensive tackle from San Antonio's MacArthur High School, was an honorable mention All-Conference USA selection his final two seasons as a Roadrunner and second among the team's defensive linemen with 49 tackles last year. Wade, a defensive back from Tyler, was the most decorated player in school history. He was a semifinalist for the 2014 Jim Thorpe Award – for the nation's top defensive back – a three-time all-conference honoree and two-year team captain who set a school record of 293 tackles in his career. Both men had outstanding college careers that allowed them to make UTSA history.

Did you know? Mabry and Wade both agreed to terms as undrafted free agents with the New Orleans Saints and Seattle Seahawks, respectively, becoming the first UTSA players to move to the professional ranks.

Read More »
Events
Sept. 7, All Day

Labor Day Holiday

All campuses will be closed for the Labor Day holiday.
All Campuses

Sept. 9, 5:30 p.m.

Architecture Connects

The UTSA College of Architecture, Construction and Planning’s 2015-16 Speaker Series begins Sept. 9 with Toshiko Mori, the Robert P. Hubbard Professor in the Practice of Architecture at the Harvard University Graduate School of Design and principal of Manhattan-based Toshiko Mori Architect.
Buena Vista Building Aula Canaria (BV 1.328), Downtown Campus

Sept. 12, 11 a.m.

UTSA Football vs. Kansas State

Cheer on the UTSA Roadrunners at their home-opener against the Kansas State Wildcats.
Alamodome, 100 Montana St.

Sept. 15, 5:30 - 7 p.m.

Changing the Conversation: Recovery Works!

As part of National Recovery Month, a panel of substance abuse practitioners and members of the recovery community will discuss issues related to substance abuse treatment and recovery.
Durango Building 1.124 (DB 1.124), Downtown Campus

Sept. 24, 6 p.m.

The Power of Story in the Landscape of Memory and Identity

The UTSA College of Education and Human Development will host award-winning children’s author and illustrator Yuyi Morales. Morales will share personal stories that have influenced her work as an author and illustrator.
Buena Vista Building Aula Canaria (BV 1.328), Downtown Campus

Oct. 5, 9 a.m. - 3 p.m.

Civic Engagement Summit

This summit is an opportunity to showcase and share the variety of community engagement activities of UTSA students, faculty, and staff. The summit is currently accepting proposals for poster presentations. The Call for Posters deadline is Friday, Sept. 11.
University Center Denman Room (2.01.28), Main Campus


Other Calendars
» UTSA Events | » Academic | » Institute of Texan Cultures

Submit an Event


Meet a Roadrunner

Teja Guda '08 is an engineer on the cutting edge

Biomedical engineering alum and professor is working to regenerate tissue

UTSA's Mission

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.

UTSA's Vision

To be a premier public research university, providing access to educational excellence and preparing citizen leaders for the global environment.

UTSA's Core Values

We encourage an environment of dialogue and discovery, where integrity, excellence, inclusiveness, respect, collaboration and innovation are fostered.

Connect with UTSA News

       


Related Links

Back to Top

2015 © The University of Texas at San Antonio  |  Produced by University Communications and Marketing