This opinion piece, submitted by the Higher Education Council of San Antonio regarding recents events on campuses across the city, appeared in today's edition of the San Antonio Express-News.
(Dec. 14, 2017) -- American colleges and universities have always embraced diverse points of view, leading to a multitude of new discoveries and cultural understanding. Higher education is a phenomenal place for minds to be challenged, to inquire, explore, discover and question the status quo.
But from time to time, American colleges and universities are subject to witness hate speech or activity that is disguised as free speech. Such has been the case in recent weeks at several colleges and universities in San Antonio and throughout Texas.
As members of the Higher Education Council of San Antonio (HECSA), we – the presidents of colleges and universities throughout this community and supporters – feel that it is important for us to speak out and make a distinction between diversity of thought and disingenuous misrepresentation of free speech. We further attest that hate speech has no place at our colleges and universities. Inappropriate messages, banners and flyers that are meant to provoke, spread hate, or create animosity and hostility, are not welcome or accepted.
Teaching, research, and critical thinking are the founding pillars of higher education. Each and every day, we witness incredible learning opportunities for our students, faculty, staff and community members.
San Antonio’s colleges and universities are stronger and more diverse than ever before. During the upcoming tricentennial, there are many events, activities and symposiums being planned at our colleges to honor the city’s multicultural heritage, as well as current and future residents. San Antonio colleges and universities have played an enormous part in the city’s history. We are proud to have been a part of this great accomplishment and will further ensure that it continues to be our focus in the next 300 years.
Please join us in celebrating the power of higher education in the lives of San Antonio residents!
Dr. Ric N. Baser, President
Higher Education Council of San Antonio
Northwest Vista College – Alamo Colleges District
Dr. Bruce Leslie, Chancellor
Alamo Colleges District
Dr. Veronica R. Garcia, President
Northeast Lakeview College – Alamo Colleges District
Dr. Scott Woodward
VP for Academic Affairs and Dean
Oblate School of Theology
Dr. Diane Melby, President
Our Lady of the Lake University
Dr. Mike Flores, President
Palo Alto College – Alamo Colleges District
Dr. Robert Vela, President
San Antonio College – Alamo Colleges District
Dr. Adena Loston, President
St. Philip’s College – Alamo Colleges District
Dr. Cynthia Teniente-Matson, President
Texas A&M University-San Antonio
Dr. Taylor Eighmy, President
University of Texas at San Antonio
Dr. Jim Antenen, Executive Director/Dean
Wayland Baptist University – San Antonio
Marise McDermott, President and CEO
Dr. Danny Anderson, President
Mayor Ron Nirenberg
The events are a collaborative effort between student organizations, student led-groups, and campus departments.Various locations, Main and Downtown Campuses
The UTSA Department of Physics and Astronomy invites everyone to its monthly lecture and stargazing eventFlawn Sciences Building (FLN 2.02.02), Main Campus
The UTSA and San Antonio communities are invited to see the Roadrunners in action during this free game that marks the end of the spring workouts season.Dub Farris Athletic Complex, 8400 North Loop 1604 W), San Antonio
The UTSA Alumni Association and the San Antonio Parks Foundation will co-host the official Fiesta event. The outdoor event is family-friendly, with live music, lawn games, a free mechanical bull ride, photo fun, local food, fresh sips, local art and cowboy merch. Admission is free for those who RSVP online, however there will be a $10 entry charge at the gates on the day of the event, as capacity allows.UTSA Park West Athletics Complex
UTSA is a designated early voting site for the May 4 Joint, General and Special Election. Any registered Bexar County voter can skip the lines and cast a ballot at UTSA from Monday, April 22 to Tuesday, April 30.H-E-B Student Union Bexar Room (HSU 1.102), Main Campus
The Campus Master Plan task force and Page consultants will share the initial draft of the master plan.Student Union Retama Auditorium (SU 2.02.02), Main Campus
The Campus Master Plan task force and Page consultants will hold a series of meetings in late April and early May to share the initial draft of the master plan.Buena Vista Street Building Aula Canaria (BVB 1.328), Downtown Campus
In this UTSA 50th anniversary speaker series, Roger Enriquez, UTSA associate professor of criminal justice, explores how immigration past and present helps us understand its future.Casa Hernán, 411 Cevallos St., San Antonio
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.