Wednesday, October 07, 2015


UTSA launches Top Scholar program: Top-tier, merit-based, four-year experience

Top Scholars

Inaugural participants in UTSA Top Scholar program

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(Nov. 19, 2013) -- The University of Texas at San Antonio (UTSA) announces the launch of Top Scholar, a premier four-year program that combines a merit-based scholarship with personalized experiences in academics, leadership and community service.

Developed and supported by the UTSA Office of the Associate Provost for Diversity and Recruitment, the Top Scholar program will serve as an essential building block in UTSA's effort to become a Tier One university by proactively recruiting high-caliber, first-time students in Greater San Antonio and throughout Texas.

The UTSA Top Scholars receive a four-year scholarship that includes funding for tuition, fees, and room and board. Unique as the only UTSA scholarship program that includes enhanced educational and leadership development opportunities, this exclusive group receives high-level signature opportunities and personal attention. Associated programming may include interaction with senior university and community leaders, attendance at conferences, and the opportunity to meet recognized scholars in their chosen fields, one-on-one advising and personalized career development, and participation in cultural and community service events.

Kristi Meyer has been charged with leading the Top Scholar program. Meyer most recently served as director of the UTSA Graduation Initiative and has extensive experience helping students succeed.

"At UTSA, we are building a community of highly talented students who are eager to pursue knowledge and achievement," said Meyer. "We anticipate that this program will contribute to the dramatic shift we are seeing as UTSA becomes an institution of first choice for the best and brightest students across the state."

This fall, five of UTSA's exceptional first-year students joined the first Top Scholar class:

Eric Ficke, a math and science whiz, plans to major in computer science with an emphasis in cyber security. Graduating near the top of his class at San Antonio Christian High School, Eric's top two choices were UTSA and Stanford because of their research strengths in cyber security. He is an Eagle Scout and a musician and enjoys volunteering for K-LOVE radio, reading and playing racquetball. His career goal is to work in cyber security for a large company.

Sophia Garcia is a natural leader. At Highlands High School in San Antonio, she was captain of the Academic Decathlon team and president of the Go Green environmental club. She also ranked fifth in her graduating class of 394. At UTSA, Garcia is in the Rising Researcher program, which prepares first-semester students to assist UTSA faculty in cutting-edge research. Her career goal is to be a microbiologist.

Amanda Griffee graduated ninth in her graduating class of 500 students. An Optimist International Oratorical regional champion, Griffee also excelled in band and as captain of the tennis team at Byron P. Steele High School in Cibolo, Texas. As a child, she was susceptible to dehydration and spent quite a bit of time in the hospital. Her personal experience being cared for by a wonderful doctor is what drives her to want to be a pediatrician.

Sarah Santos was valedictorian of her class of 602 students at John Marshall High School in San Antonio and attributes her success in life to her competitive spirit. Her interests include reading, writing, listening to music, playing video games and winning arguments. As a psychology major at UTSA, Santos loves studying the human mind and plans to explore clinical psychology as a possible career path.

Caroline Williams is an adventurous young woman with a desire to experience as much as possible. A product of the Waldorf School in Austin, Texas, known for developing well-rounded and independent individuals, Williams has studied in Germany, worked on a farm, holds a black belt in Kuk Sool Won, a form of Korean martial arts, and volunteers regularly. Currently an undeclared major at UTSA, she is exploring several options.

Eligible students must be Texas residents who are entering college for the first time. The most competitive students score 1400 or higher on the two-part SAT, 2100 or higher on the three-part SAT, or 32 or higher on the ACT. Class rank and record of community volunteerism and leadership also are considered.

In order to remain in the program, the students must maintain a UTSA GPA of at least 3.25, live on campus for the first two years, complete 30 hours each academic year, complete at least one community service and leadership development project each year, and actively participate in all aspects of the program.

The Top Scholar program is accepting applications through Dec. 1, 2013. For more information and to apply to the program, visit the UTSA Top Scholar website.

This Top Scholar application process is separate and in addition to the traditional UTSA undergraduate admission process, which can be found at the UTSA Admissions website.


About UTSA

The University of Texas at San Antonio is an emerging Tier One research institution specializing in health, energy, security, sustainability, and human and social development. With nearly 29,000 students, it is the largest university in the San Antonio metropolitan region. UTSA advances knowledge through research and discovery, teaching and learning, community engagement and public service.

The university 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.



Oct. 5, 6 p.m.

Film Screening: The Head of Joaquin Murrieta by John Valadez

The Mexican American Studies Program will host a screening of this irreverent, entertaining and often disturbing tale that uses both fiction and documentary story telling devices to tear open a painful and long ignored history: the lynching of Mexican Americans in the southwest.
Buena Vista Building Aula Canaria (BV 1.328), Downtown Campus

Oct. 6, 3 p.m.

State of the University

Join President Ricardo Romo as he gives his address to the UTSA community.
H-E-B University Center Ballroom (UC 1.104), Main Campus

Oct. 7, 6:30 p.m.

The Impact of the 84th Texas Legislative Session on Public Schools: Any Rain in Sight or Are Those Smoke Clouds on the Horizon?

Join the College of Education and Human Development's Center for Educational Leadership, Policy and Professional Development for a discussion about what passed and what didn't in the last legislative session and what it means for Bexar County Public Schools. 
Durango Building Southwest Room (DB 1.124), Main Campus

Oct. 8, 10 a.m.

Graduate Fair

Graduate School representatives from across the country will provide information on options after earning a bachelor's degree. Students, alumni and community members are welcome.
University Center Retama Galleria, Main Campus

Oct. 10, 8:30 a.m. - 3 p.m.

UTSA CITE Technology Entrepreneurship Boot Camp

Kickstart your career as an entrepreneur at The University of Texas at San Antonio’s Center for Innovation, Technology and Entrepreneurship (CITE) Technology Entrepreneurship Boot Camp.
Business Building, Richard S. Liu Auditorium (BB 2.01.02), Main Campus

Oct. 14, 5:30 p.m.

Architecture as Rendered Society

The UTSA College of Architecture, Construction and Planning, in partnership with AIA San Antonio’s Latinos in Architecture, presents architect Andrés Jaque, founder of the Office for Political Innovation, an architectural practice dually based in New York and Madrid.
Buena Vista Building, Aula Canaria Lecture Hall (BV 1.328), Downtown Campus

Oct. 20-21, 9 a.m. - 3 p.m.

SECC Book Sale

Looking for a good read? Shop for yourself or for gifts and help change a life at the same time. Browse and buy children’s stories, novels and more at the 2015 SECC Book Sale.
Sombrilla Plaza, Main Campus

Oct. 27, 11:30 a.m.

Lecture by Composer Larry Groupe

The UTSA Music Department presents Emmy-award winning Composer Larry Groupe. Groupe has composed music for films such as "The Contender," "Straw Dogs" and "Miami Vice," and TV shows such as "Star Trek: The Next Generation," "Ren and Stimpy" and "American Gladiators." Lecture is free and open to the public.
Arts Building (2.03.15-18), Main Campus

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Did You Know?

UTSA writes the book on all-digital libraries

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.

Read More »

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.

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