The Dean’s Student Board first began under a different name, the Dean’s Student Advisory Council. The Council was formed in Spring 2015 with a founding membership of approximately 18 undergraduate students. It was modeled on the UTSA Student Government and the College of Engineering’s Student Council. As a registered student organization, the Council focused on facilitating communication between students and the COS administration with the goal to communicate relevant student issues in a way that would better serve the needs of COS students. The Council hosted events such as MedTalk and SciTalk to bring together interesting speakers to connect with COS students. Council members also served as volunteer ambassadors, representing the College of Sciences at various events and functions.
The Dean’s Student Advisory Council transitioned to the Dean’s Student Board during Summer 2017. A new Constitution was created to codify the vision and mission and give structure to how those goals would be accomplished. The Associate Dean and Undergraduate Program Manager worked closely with the incoming Student Board President to finalize the Constitution. Throughout that Summer, they worked diligently to recruit new members to replace those who had graduated. Of primary concern was to seek students from all majors and classifications so that the Student Board membership contained a variety of students, with various experiences and opinions. In Fall 2017, the Student Board successfully confirmed the nominations of 45 Representatives. There were five students from each COS department; four undergraduates and one graduate specifically representing their Department. Five more students represented all Pre-Health Professions, to capture the perspective of students in COS and non-COS majors. The final five students broadly represented all Sciences students.
In the 2017-2018 academic year, the Student Board was involved in significant accomplishments. With the support of the Associate Deans and the UTSA Student Government Association, the Student Board was instrumental in advocating for the remodeling of the Flawn Sciences building 3rd Floor into a space where students can gather, collaborate, and study. This remodeling is currently underway. The Student Board also hosted the first-ever College Town Hall, during which students were able to voice their opinions, comments, and concerns to the Dean and Department Chairs.
Moving forward, the Dean’s Student Board will continue to be a voice for COS students, advocating for improvements in physical spaces, social culture, and teaching and curriculum that will be worthwhile and impactful.