The UTSA iPASS Grant supports MLK Speaker Series for Student Success

January 29, 2018

MLK Presenter posing with Pres. Eighmy and ipass staff

 (From left to right: Taylor Eighmy, Ph.D., Vanessa Hammler Kenon, Ed.D., Ricky Jones Ph.D., Margo DelliCarpini, Ph.D., and Karla Broadus.)

                                     Photo Credit: JoAnn Jones, College of Education and Human Development


Written by: Rose Ong, OIT Project Coordinator

Several Office of Information Technology (OIT) teams collaborated in the events for the Martin Luther King (MLK) Jr. Celebration at UTSA. Assistant Vice Provost for IT Vanessa Hammler Kenon, Ed.D., led several collaborations as she serves as a member of the UTSA MLK Committee and the African American Studies Program. This included assisting with the organization of UTSA’s participation in the MLK March and bringing a renowned speaker to campus to discuss the relation of civil rights to student success.

Professor and Chair of the University of Louisville’s Department of Pan-African Studies Ricky Jones, Ph.D., served as the speaker for the 2018 UTSA Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Annual Lecture. The lecture was held on January 24 in the UTSA Student Union Retama Auditorium (2.02.02) on the UTSA Main Campus.

President Eighmy delivered the Presidential Remarks noting that student success is at the center of our work at the university. He reflected that measuring an institution’s student success must be about who we include and not who we exclude. Opportunities to succeed must be available to all students.

Dr. Jones’ presentation titled, “MY BROTHER MARTIN: Democracy, Decency, and Developing Student Success in 21st Century America” explored developing students as it relates to student success. During his speech he shared his perspective that, “Universities are not corporations. These are places where our young people come to grow, to meet one another, to partner with one another, and to meet scholars who will help them move along that life path of decency -- of humanity -- and toward democracy. That is what student success is all about.” Furthermore, student success in not about one person, one department or one leader. It takes the entire institution.

At the close of the event, Dr Kenon challenged attendees to take what they had learned at the lecture and share that information with someone else to continue the inspiration and conversation from the event.

The College of Education and Human Development (COEHD) African American Studies Program and OIT cosponsored the lecture. The OIT Video Production team filmed the event and the Customer Relations, Communications, and Training team provided support with marketing design.

Funding and support for the event was provided by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation (BMGF) Integrated Planning and Advising for Student Success (iPASS) grant, OIT manages on behalf of UTSA. The grant is a collaborative effort between the UTSA Provost’s Office, Academic Advising, Institutional Research and OIT.