(Oct. 17, 2017) -- Marcos Mendoza, a graduate student in The University of Texas at San Antonio (UTSA) Criminal Justice and Criminology program, was selected as an AmeriCorps VISTA economic development intern, a one year paid internship through the Alamo Area Council of Governments (AACOG). Mendoza will be implementing an economic development plan for impoverished communities in Frio and Medina Counties.
AACOG partners with the Economic Development Administration (EDA) and Corporation for National and Community Service (CNCS) to provide an economic development intern for the City of Pleasanton, in Atascosa County and other economically distressed communities. The goal of the VISTA is to build capacity in rural, economically distressed communities to alleviate poverty and reduce unemployment.
"These are the opportunities that truly signify how obtaining an education through an outstanding university like UTSA does for individuals who inspire to be community leaders to serve others," Marcos exclaimed. "I am committed to give my very best in serving the communities I have been assigned to and will continue to represent UTSA with honor and pride."
Mendoza, a member of the National Criminal Justice Honor Society Alpha Phi Sigma, credits his prior military service and study abroad experience to prepare him for his role.
"My military services in Iraq, police experience and the study abroad opportunity in Guadalajara, Mexico will aid me in being successful in my new position," he said. "I believe that this opportunity will provide me with the ability to impact people's lives and make a difference in their communities."
Jennifer Alexander, an associate professor in the UTSA Department of Public Administration and one of Mendoza's instructors, inspired Marcos to take on many challenges. She says he will enrich the lives of others.
"As a first-generation U.S. citizen, Marcos Mendoza brings a unique vantage point to this opportunity," said Alexander. "His participation in a variety of public organizations has given him a sophisticated understanding of how they function. He has a solid grasp on his career goals and a quiet grace that will enlarge the lives of people who work with him."
Mendoza is thankful to his family for supporting him during his academic career.
"All my hard work and success would not have been possible if it had not been because of my family's support. My older brother Rene and mother Maria Cristina are the two most influential people in my life. My family is my inspiration," declared Mendoza.
This is the second year in a row that a COPP student will intern as part of AACOG's economic development AmeriCorps VISTA program.
Mendoza will work with community partners and agencies to identify economic development needs and resources for low-income communities in an effort to attract higher-paying jobs and other opportunities. He will also have networking opportunities and a chance to meet city leaders. Last year's VISTA Summer Kohler, a UTSA public administration student, compiled a business directory for the city of Pleasanton and gave business owners information about programs to help lower income populations. She met elected officials, the Mayor of Pleasanton, and completed work for the Chamber of Commerce.
Students are invited to a semi-formal, dinner banquet with an awards presentation and dancing. Keynote speaker will be San Antonio City Councilman William Cruz Shaw. Tickets must be purchased by Feb 19 at Roadrunner Express. UTSA students are $15 and guests are $20.H-E-B Student Union Ballroom (HSU 1.104/1.106), Main Campus
Dr. Don Jenkins from UT Health SA will lead this event UTSA with up to 30 certified STB trainers, and train up to 300 UTSA students and personnel in stop the bleed methods.H-E-B Student Union Ballroom (HSU 1.106), Main Campus
Get to know more about the Bexar County Criminal District Court candidates' stance on the issues before voting in the primary election on March 6.Buena Vista Street Building, Aula Canaria (BVB 1.328), Downtown Campus
As part of RecycleMania,UTSA will provide sensitive document shredding services for the UTSA community. Bring documents to the parking lot between Student Union & Ximenes Avenue Garage. Document pick up also available for the Downtown and Hemisfair Campuses.H-E-B Student Union parking lot, Main Campus
Lt. Gen. (Ret.) Koichiro Bansho will speak the importance of the Japan-U.S. relations from the historical and security perspectives. He will go over the history and future of the alliance between the two countries.H-E-B Student Union, Travis Room (HSU 2.202), Main Campus
This panel discussion includes professionals from various careers and fields talking about maintaining a black identity in professional spaces.Student Union Denman Room (SU 2.01.28), Main Campus
The Faculty Center presents geneticist, anthropologist, author & entrepreneur Spencer Wells. Join us for a talk about how our DNA informs the way our ancestors populated the planet and how research can change industry and perceptions.Student Union Retama Auditorium (SU 2.02.02), Main Campus
Come hear this geneticist, anthropologist, author and entrepreneur speak about "The Human Journey: A Genetic Odyssey." The lecture is free and open to the public.Student Union, Retama Auditorium (SU 2.02.02), Main Campus