UTSAs Video Production Group Helps Guide Incoming Freshmen Toward Success

July 29, 2016

by Danicia Steele at 8:30 AM in Campus Community, News, Staff News



This summer the UTSA Office of Information Technology's (OIT) Video Production Group (VPG) is collaborating with several UTSA offices to increase the awareness of programs and services available to incoming freshmen that enhance their first year educational experience.  The offices of Orientation and Family Programs, First Year Experience and UTSA Testing Services understand that video is a powerful tool in communicating with students and have teamed up with VPG producers to a create a series of educational and promotional videos.  

Director of Video Technology, Ernest Hernandez III explained that the VPG focuses on ways to have a positive impact on student success. Hernandez stated that through videos produced by the group, "students get introduced to a wide variety of resources and opportunities at UTSA."

When reaching out to students it's important to have a clear, short, strong message. The videos produced by the VPG are designed to capture the students' attention, as well as to educate and inform them of valuable programs and services.

Over the past few years Producers Gerard Bustos and Stephen Matthews have created a catalog of videos that promote academic and campus life opportunities.  This summer, Matthews has partnered with UTSA Orientation and Family Programs to produce video content for Roadrunner Camp, encouraging new students to get involved early in student organizations at UTSA. He also produced new Rowdy Ready videos designed to inform parents and students about what to expect at New Student Orientation and Roadrunner Days.

UTSA's Academic Inquiry and Scholarship (AIS 1203) is an academic course that introduces incoming UTSA Freshmen to research and inquiry practices within the humanities, social sciences, and natural sciences. Bustos has been working closely with UTSA's First Year Experience (FYE) program, producing video profiles on research faculty, the research centers, and current research activity. Two current videos completed this summer focus on the Center for Simulation, Visualization, and Real Time Prediction (SiViRT) and the Center for Innovative Drug Discovery.

UTSA Testing Services, in collaboration with the Department of Mathematics and Statistics is providing a math camp for freshmen STEM students. Jumpstart Math Camp helps students sharpen their math skills, helps increase their chances in placing at a higher math level, and helps them graduate in four years. VPG has collaborated with both Testing Services and the math department to raise awareness about the program. Bustos produced video clips for the Testing Services website interviewing students who benefited from the program. He explains that, "after participating in Jumpstart, STEM students can place into higher-level math courses which helps them graduate in four years, and we (OIT Video Production Group) want to help raise awareness about this important program at UTSA."

Students at UTSA are not always aware of the programs and opportunities available to them or how they can benefit them. The VPG provides a way of increasing their awareness and educating them on what the different programs can do for them.  Hernandez said, "The more they enjoy their undergraduate experience the more they are willing to continue into graduate school."

To watch the videos mentioned in this article please visit:


To see other videos produced by the Video Production Group please visit: