(Dec. 19, 2013) -- Meet Cara Ward. When she walks across the Alamodome stage to receive her bachelor's degree in biology from the College of Sciences, it will mark the end of a long and hard-fought journey for the 21-year-old Austin native. Additionally, Ward will graduate with highest honors from the UTSA Honors College.
Raised in a foster family, the Lake Travis High School graduate excelled in high school and was accepted to several universities around the country. However, the financial price tags to attend those schools were more than she could afford. Disheartened but not defeated, Ward decided to pursue her dream of becoming a medical doctor and enrolled at UTSA with the help of a financial aid package.
After getting through a rough first semester with new financial adjustments and responsibilities, Ward flourished academically and found herself becoming more involved in campus activities.
She held several leadership positions in the Alpha Epsilon Delta premedical society and was inducted as a member of the Phi Kappa Phi honors society.
Ward earned a Teaching and Research in Environmental Ecology fellowship and was elected secretary of the Global Health Brigades, a new UTSA society focused on improving medical care services in Honduras.
In addition to her campus involvement and rigorous class schedule, Ward works in the College of Sciences dean's office at the Downtown Campus where she assists with the development of a Biosciences II class. She also spent two years with the Baptist Health Care System, employed as an emergency department scribe assisting physicians and patients.
For her outstanding efforts, Ward has received the College of Sciences Presidential Scholarship, the College of Sciences Letitia and George Riley Annual Scholarship, the Dr. Ruskin Norman and Karen Norman Endowed Scholarship, and the Sagik Memorial Scholarship Award, which is awarded to first-generation college students.
Ward hopes to attend medical school in Texas and has already visited UT-Southwestern in Dallas and UT-Medical Branch in Houston.
"I always like to challenge myself and that's why I chose medicine," said Ward. "It's multi-faceted and keeps your feet in different doors. In addition to being a doctor, sometimes you are also a sociologist, psychiatrist, social worker and a business person, depending on the situation."
Do you know a fascinating UTSA student who is planning to graduate in May 2014? Share that story with us at email@example.com.
A revolution in cloud computing is underway, and Ravi Sandhu believes it will be much bigger than the PC and Internet revolutions that have already changed the way we live. Sandhu, director of the UTSA Institute for Cyber Security, says UTSA is taking a leadership role in tackling three fundamental cloud technology problems: how to build and operate the cloud, how to use it profitably for diverse applications and how to keep it secure.
Sandhu, the Lutcher Brown Distinguished Chair in Cyber Security in the College of Sciences, and Ram Krishnan, assistant professor of electrical engineering in the UTSA College of Engineering, are funded by a $500,000 grant from the National Science Foundation to improve cloud security.
Did you know? Sandhu, a world-renowned cybersecurity expert, holds 30 patents, has authored more than 250 papers and been cited more than 30,000 times.
This documentary, presented by the San Antonio Film Festival, documents the experience of re-entry after incarceration. The film features Michael Gilbert, associate professor in the department of criminal justice and director of the Office of Community and Restorative Justice program at UTSA.
Tobin Center for the Performing Arts, 100 Auditorium Circle
Discover resources and strategies for teaching Tejano history and culture and get a special educator's tour of the new long-term exhibit, Los Tejanos.
Institute of Texan Cultures, 801 E. Cesar E. Chavez Blvd.
This annual symposium is an opportunity to discuss Texas higher education issues and trends with Texas higher education scholars, state and local government officials, students, and campus and local community members.
This cowboy-themed programming, offered in conjunction with Our Kids Magazine's Kidcation Week, gives families the opportunity to visit with cowboy docents, enjoy readings and visit activity tables.
Institute of Texan Cultures, 801 E. Cesar E. Chavez Blvd.
Join President Ricardo Romo, The Spirit of San Antonio Marching Band, students, faculty and staff to light the monument at the Main Campus entrance at the stroke of midnight.
John Peace Boulevard Entrance, Main Campus
Join university President Ricardo Romo on the Bill Miller Plaza for his annual free BBQ lunch.
Bill Miller Plaza, Downtown Campus
Join university President Ricardo Romo on the Convocation Center lawn for his annual free BBQ lunch.
Convocation Center East Lawn, Main Campus
The UTSA Alumni Association hosts this annual gala honoring the Alumna of the Year, Alumnus of the Year and the Alumnus of the Year Lifetime Achievement award winners.
Hyatt Regency Hill Country Resort & Spa, 9800 Hyatt Resort Dr.
After graduation, Queretaro native founded a music label recognized by SXSW
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