Final Countdown

Texas Department of Transportation workers install a highway sign for UTSA along Interstate 10.

The Final Countdown

Roadrunners are busy but find time to boast in the days leading up to 1975 opening of new campus

[ This article was originally published in the UTSA newsletter The Discourse in August 1975 ]

A group of students stood patiently in line outside Room 3.04.10 of the Humanities-Business Building, waiting to be advised. Down the outdoor path from the new classroom building, the finishing white lines were painted on the parking lots. And out on Interstate 10 near the campus, Volkswagens, Cadillacs, and trucks were wearing bright orange bumper stickers.

UTSA had come of age.

August [1975] was a busy month for UTSA faculty, administrators, and staff who counted down the final days before September 2—the first day of classes on the new campus. By August 25, roughly 2,200 students had already registered for the fall semester.

One graduate and five undergraduate New Student Conferences in July and August gave students a sneak preview of the new campus, the faculty, and each other. About 1,700 students attended the conferences, which included registration, orientation, and academic advising.

UTSA President Peter T. Flawn welcomed participants to the first new-student session. “You share an adventurous spirit with those of us who planned UTSA,” Flawn told the pioneer class. “We have a good university for you. We ask only that you work, and if you encounter problems, come to us.”

The conferences ran smoothly; even an occasional lengthy line wasn’t an inconvenience. As one passerby explained, “It finally looks like a university.”

Students weren’t the only ones to become acquainted with UTSA during August. About 90 new faculty members participated in faculty orientation August 18–22. They join 87 “old timers” to bring UTSA’s faculty membership to 180.

While everything seemed set inside the Humanities-Business Building, site development on the south side of campus (roads, parking lots, street lights, and some landscaping) was under way.