(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.
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.
The UTSA East Asia Institute hosts District 8 City Councilman Ron Nirenberg who will discuss his recent trip to China for the 8th annual Sister Cities International forum. He will discuss how these conversations help citizens connect in an increasingly global world to exchange ideas and tackle issues affecting all of us.
University Center, Denman Room (UC 2.01.28), Main Campus
Antonio Petrov, assistant professor in the UTSA College of Architecture, Construction and Planning, invites San Antonio to engage in dialogue to gather a broad understanding of Puro. he symposium, which includes UTSA masters students, will be led by community members who embody the term. It's free and open to the public.
Brick at Blue Star Arts Complex, Bldg. 108, 1414 S. Alamo St., 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
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
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.