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A message from UTSA Vice President of Student Affairs- Dr. Gage E. Paine

Dr. Gage E Paine "Heirlooms we don't have in our family. But stories we've got." Rose Cherin

Family stories. We all have them. Often they are about family members we barely know or rarely see. I tell the story about a great-uncle who staunchly refused any discussion of his health issues to the point that when he passed out in the field everyone ignored it. Later he would get up and continue with the task at hand. These episodes happened during my mother's teen years and I remember Uncle Carl twenty or so years later - I guess he was right that fainting in the field was a minor matter. Now, I don't know if this really happened multiple times or only once, but that's beside the point. The point is that the repetition of this story connects me to a larger family history. (It's just a bonus that it gives me a great entry in any ‘my-family-is-crazier-than-yours' contest!)

When family members take a step out into the wider world it can be scary for them and for the family who are staying home. Sharing stories is an important way to support both the student's leaving and staying connected at the same time. Encourage the student member of your family (whether the student is the child or the parent) to talk—tell stories, in other words—about college life. Some may need a little encouragement, but it's a way for everyone to feel more connected to that life away from the family. Family members who are not going away to college may struggle to think of stories to tell, since their lives are not changing as dramatically, but telling those stories is important to help students know they are still an integral part of their family.

As we head to the short semester break for the Thanksgiving holiday and we pull out the favorite family stories with the turkey-themed tablecloth (or whatever your family tradition is), be sure to share more recent stories to help everyone remember that change may be constant, but families are forever. After all, no one in my family should ever forget the year an aunt left the turkey out too long and tried to serve green turkey the next day. However, we also need to know about current adventures, challenges and happy times. (It's also wise to remember that this year's holiday disaster will be retold for years to come, so think twice before you experiment with that new hair-do or pie recipe this year!)

Best wishes,

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Incredible Gift to UTSA

The largest single private gift in university history has been posthumously donated to UTSA by a caring woman named Mary McKinney. The $22 million dollar gift was given to fund up to full-ride scholarships for students working to complete their degrees. UTSA President Ricardo Romo recognized Miss McKinney during his annual State of the University address and explained what kind of a person she was. "Miss McKinney was an outstanding, humble Texan who did not care for fame or recognition," said Romo. "An avid reader who only wanted to help students, she strongly felt education was the key to success. Through this extraordinary gift, she has established a legacy that will help generations of UTSA students achieve their educational goals." Marjie French, UTSA Vice President for university advancement also had kind words for Miss McKinney's thoughtful donation to the university. "Miss McKinney firmly believed that students with strong academic records should not be prevented from completing their education due to a lack of financial resources. The McKinney memorial scholarship fund is a great tribute to Miss McKinney and her parents. The scholarships awarded will help transform UTSA students' lives."

All information retrieved from http://www.utsa.edu/today/2010/10/mckinneygift.html on October 19, 2010 and courtesy of Christi Fish.

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Fall Family Weekend 2010

Family Weekend 2010The 2010 Fall Family Weekend was a HUGE success!!! Over 400 individual family members registered for one or more events throughout the weekend. Participants enjoyed a variety of activities and many received Family Association perks such as t-shirts, tote bags, beads, writing pads and more!

Campus Recreation hosted the 4th Annual Rowdy Rec Run 5k on Saturday, October 23 as a part of Family Weekend 2010. Over 270 students, family members and friends participated in the race. The Rowdy Rec Run 5k provides a fantastic outlet for UTSA students and family members to have friendly competition while spending time together and enhancing their overall health and wellness.

Rowdy Rec Run

(Photo courtesy of Amy Dalrymple)

On-campus housing sponsored the first annual Family Weekend Tailgate, family members and students enjoyed music and food while relaxing around the lazy river at the UTSA Campus Rec Center. Family members participated in a variety of outdoor games like Bocce Ball, Croquet, Lawn Darts, Corn Hole, Bean Bag Toss, Balloon Animals, Sand Art, and Duck Races. Click here to see a photo album of this event.

To view more Family Weekend photos consult the Family Weekend website http://utsa.edu/family/ later this month for more updates.

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Spring Registration 2011

The registration process for new students can tend to be somewhat difficult when completed alone for the first time. Included, is some information on the upcoming spring registration process from the Colleges' Freshman Advising Center (CFAC) and the Tomás Rivera Center (TRC).

The CFAC advises all freshmen with declared majors, and the TRC advises all undeclared and provisional students. It is a good idea to call your advising center to find out advisor availability since appointments and walk-ins may vary on a daily basis. CFAC can be reached by calling (210) 458-5170, and the TRC can be reached by calling (210) 458-4694. Advising is very much an individualized service due to each student's individual needs. The sooner students come in to talk with an advisor, the shorter the wait time!

A special note from CFAC: Beginning this semester, ALL Engineering and Pre-engineering students are REQUIRED to meet in person with an advisor to have their advising hold removed.

Also, for the first time, registration within each classification will be staggered. Registration for freshmen will be as follows:

Freshmen with 20 to 29 credit hours earned: 7:00 a.m. on December 2nd
Freshmen with 10-19 credit hours earned: 7:00 a.m. on December 3rd
Freshmen with 0-9 credit hours earned: 7:00 a.m. on December 6th

For further information regarding your academic advising center, please look on-line at http://utsa.edu/cfac/ or http://utsa.edu/trcss/.

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SECC Campaign

The State Employee Charitable Campaign (SECC) was created in 1993 where employees of stage agencies, colleges, and universities throughout Texas enjoy the benefit of giving to many charities of their choosing through an annual workplace giving campaign with payroll deduction as an available and easy option. Donations have exceeded $5.8 million in 2008. The SECC campaign is a great way for state employees to give to those that need it. For more information please see UTSA's SECC website.

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Early Voting

The UTSA Main Campus has once again been designated as one of 41 Bexar County early-voting sites for the November 2 joint general, special, and bond elections. The early voting took place during Monday Oct. 18 through Friday Oct. 29. This voting site at UTSA has been one of the busiest polling locations in Bexar County. SGA (Student Government Association) and several registered student organizations have helped register over 1,600 students to be eligible to vote in the Nov. 2 elections.

All information retrieved from http://www.utsa.edu/today/2010/10/earlyvoting.html on October 19, 2010 and courtesy of Kris Rodriguez.

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Development Office Family Fund

The development office at UTSA works with donations and fundraising and they have a special program known as the Family Fund that helps students on campus. Brittany Pratt, Development Assistant describes this exciting program below.

This summer, UTSA launched our second year of parent fundraising. Since June of 2010, parents have contributed over $22,000 to help our students! Each and every one of our gifts, including yours, matters. If you haven't made your pledge already, you can visit utsa.edu/give to make it today! Be sure to designate your gift to the UTSA Family Fund!

The funds raised from parents go directly toward programs and services our students use every day like career services, student activities, leadership and diversity programming as well as health and wellness initiatives on campus. What a great way to further support all students at UTSA!

Family Fund contributions are dispersed through a competitive grant process within the division of Student Affairs at UTSA. Student Affairs departments as well as students are invited to submit a proposal for a project they think fulfills a need on campus. Proposals are then reviewed by Dr. Gage Paine and are decided on by representatives of the Parent Council. Our first batch of parent funded projects will be announced in the next newsletter. We thank you very much for your support and can't wait to share the funded proposals with all of you.

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Family Association Update

Family AssociationThe UTSA Family Association is pleased to welcome members of UTSA's first Parent Council. Members of the Parent Council assist in dispersing Family Fund contributions, serve as representatives of the Family Association at various UTSA events and much more!

The mission of the UTSA Parent Council is to foster positive relationships with all members of the UTSA community, promote the quality reputation of the university and increase support for programs that enhance student life on campus. Each member serves a required one year term with the option to return for a second year to the Council. The members include:

Ed and Yvonne Cantu-President
Cedar Park, TX
Daughter, Victoria Cantu
Sophomore Art Major

Timothy ('83) and Diana Backlund
Boerne, TX
Son, Austin Backlund
Freshman Pre-Engineering Major

Ricardo ('81) and Hilda Castillo
San Antonio, TX
Son, Kevin Castillo
Incoming Freshman

William and Deann Fisher
Boerne, TX
Son, Cory Fisher
Freshman Pre-Business Major

David and Evelyn Gonzalez
San Antonio, TX
Son, Michael Gonzalez
Sophomore Construction & Science Management Major

Kerry Vaughn and Donna Pfeifer-Vaughn ('94)
San Antonio, TX
Son, Matthew Bryan
Freshman Undeclared Major

Billy and Barbara Vaughn
Dallas, TX
Granddaughter, Lauren Vaughn
Freshman, Undeclared Major

Frank and Robin Vickers
Houston, TX
Son, Peyton Vickers
Sophomore, Communication Major

If you are interested in learning more about becoming a Parent Council representative contact Jana Kennelly, Director of Development, (210) 458-5125, jana.kennelly@utsa.edu or Lisa Alonzo, Director of Orientation and Family Programs, (210) 458-4724, lisa.alonzo@utsa.edu

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