Sunday, November 29, 2015


Meet a Roadrunner: Majed Hajj is creating opportunities for Iraqi refugees through research

Jared Cruz-Aedo

Majed Hajj

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(April 2, 2014) -- Meet Majed Hajj. Originally from Lebanon, he knows the difficulties that stem from immigrating to the United States, and plans to use his qualitative research to understand children going through the assimilation process.

Hajj is working on his doctoral degree in educational leadership and policy studies at UTSA, researching the learning experiences of Iraqi refugee students in the United States.

Hajj immigrated here in 2003 and completed his master's degree at UTSA in 2007. He now works alongside Michael Jennings, Curtis Brewer and Maricela Oliva in the College of Education and Human Development as a doctoral fellow.

Hajj has decided to use his research and personal experiences to learn more about a population that often is misunderstood and marginalized, he said.

Although the transition into the educational culture at UTSA was a fairly easy one for him after attending an American school in Beirut, Hajj acknowledges that cultural differences often make a similar transition for children much more difficult.

"The culture of school for the Iraqi children is very different and there is a shortage of teachers to accommodate the needs of these students," he said. "There's a multitude of research for other groups, but the Iraqi experience is unique."

He hopes his research will help others understand the Arab culture, and in turn help those students who are transitioning into American culture.

"UTSA is growing and it has a great future and I was thinking of the long-term when I decided to come back," he said. "Here at UTSA, the culture of the university is very supportive, diverse and welcoming."


Do you know someone who is doing great things at UTSA? Email us at, so we can consider your nomination for our next installment of Meet a Roadrunner.



Dec. 1, 9 a.m.

CITE Venture Competition & Exposition

The annual Center for Innovation, Technology and Entrepreneurship (CITE) 100K Venture Competition and Exposition will be held on the Main Campus on Dec. 1. Twenty-eight teams from across the university will exhibit their project; six teams will compete for a prize pool of more than $100,000 in funding to launch their new venture / company. More than 650 students have participated in launching new technology ventures.
Biotechnology, Sciences and Engineering (BSE 2.102), Main Campus

Dec. 3, 5:30 p.m.

UTSA Downtown String Project Winter Concert

This concert features 50 community children performing music in the UTSA Downtown String Project Winter Concert. The children, led by UTSA music students studying to be music teachers, will join together in playing the Theme from Batman at their concert. The Batman of San Antonio, a local celebrity figure, will make an appearance at the concert. This event is free.
Buena Vista Theatre, Downtown 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.

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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.

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