Latest information on operational modifications for fall 2021 Roadrunner Roadmap

Staff Appreciation

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Award Certificate Icon July 2021 Award Winner
Distribution Services

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While the majority of us remain safe at home, Distribution Services continues working on campus and running at a normal level receiving mail, packages, deliveries and our old records for retention.   They created new and efficient ways for the university to receive mail and packages by developing a safe curbside pick-up at both campuses!  They continued making large deliveries to laboratories, facilities and departments without hesitation.  They even created a safe space and offered their warehouse as a place where departments could drop off supplies, or mail or packages, for faculty, staff and students to pick up.  Someone in a Business Service Center told me that “Our department would not have been as efficient as it became if not for Distribution Services.  I would make one phone call, and all my deliveries, large and small, would be at my door within 10-15 minutes, every single time.  Distribution Services is reliable, friendly, and leave you feeling like you never have to worry about mail and packages while working in a virtual environment, or at all.  Distribution Services has your back!

  

Award Certificate Icon July 2021 Award Winner
Reuben Aleman, Veteran and Military Affairs

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As a UTSA alumnus, Reuben has continued to contribute to the UTSA community by working avidly to assist our UTSA service members and veterans receive federal educational benefits and ensure our students are making a seamless transition from active military back to school. He works tirelessly ensuring our UTSA military affiliated students are informed about their VA benefits, resources, and opportunities to engage with campus organizations like the UTSA Student Veterans Association. He has continued to shine a light on many of his constituents this past year, really allowing the UTSA community to understand all the hard work and collaboration this office does with other department to ensure we are meeting students’ needs at every step of the way. Thank you for your continued effort with our students, commending your colleagues for their contribution to the UTSA community, and your valued leadership at UTSA.

  

Award Certificate Icon June 2021 Award Winner
Eva Montecinos, UTS Application Development Support

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Eva is a valued partner of the UTSA Veteran and Military Affairs Office, whose expertise has greatly aided VMA’s mission and ability to track student enrollment, manage state mandated end term reporting, and created cross-departmental scripts to allow a smooth and transparent application of the Texas Hazelwood exemption. It has been said that Eva’s greatest contribution was the creation of the Hazelwood Exemption Report, which streamlined the process by providing a daily script that keeps all stakeholders informed of the application of Hazelwood student accounts. Eva also built a script that aids VMA’s Hazelwood team in tracking changes in student enrollment, which has reduced the workload for the VMA office. Eva truly exemplifies all the qualities of an extraordinary program analyst and why she is our June award winner.

  

Award Certificate Icon June 2021 Award Winner
Academic innovation

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The Academic Innovation Team led the transition to remote learning for UTSA since the beginning of the pandemic. Although different departments contributed to remote learning, this team stood out as being present and highly influential and helpful during the entire pandemic, and continue to do so today. It was said that the synergy of this team has been nothing short of amazing. They provided front line support for faculty, staff, and students. They came together to provide the best support possible, serving an entire institution, with little notice to do so. They quickly became productive with learning digital tools and how to best utilize those for online remote learning. They did not hesitate to share problems and solutions to make remote learning a better experience for faculty, staff, and students, putting the student experience first.

  

Award Certificate Icon May 2021 Award Winner
Student Health Services

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COVID has created a new reality. COVID has altered every aspect of serving students in Student Health Services from the way they see students, to adapting their services, to altering a majority of their policies and paperwork. They have had to think outside-the-box and this team has excelled at compromise, innovation and teamwork. The clinic staff, from the providers, to the nurses, to the front office staff, they have maintained a steady and calming presence for our students in the midst of chaos. A welcoming greeting, a friendly smile, genuine concern and a safe haven in the storm of our new reality; This is what the clinic staff has provided our students, every day, since COVID came into our lives. The staff has displayed resiliency, adaptability, humor and kindness...daily. They never closed, and they have remained a steady resource throughout the pandemic.

  

Award Certificate Icon May 2021 Award Winner
Stacey Wells

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Stacey has aided the Veteran and Military Affairs office in the Hazelwood Act exemption process and often provides valuable insight as to how the residency may impact VMA operations. Stacey also has helped the VMA office reach decisions on eligibility of initial Hazelwood Applications and always quickly responds to inquiries from our Hazelwood team. Stacey has helped our students clear up issues when involving Military Duty Statements and the application of Hazelwood Exemptions for students who have pending residency issues. Concerning Military Duty Statements, Stacey assists military members establish residency by collecting the proper Department of Defense documents to ensure our service members do not pay out of state tuition. Stacey has also helped our students navigate residency issues in order for them to utilize their hard-earned veteran benefits under the Texas Hazelwood Act. In short, Stacey’s work has greatly helped our students utilize their benefits at UTSA. She is always willing to help out our team and does so without hesitation. It is not uncommon for myself or one of our Hazelwood processors to reach out to Stacey and ask her for guidance and insight into residency issues as they pertain to veteran benefits.

  

Award Certificate Icon April 2021 Award Winner
Andie Watson, Veteran and Military Affairs

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The Staff Appreciation Individual Award goes to Andie Watson, Veteran Certifying Official. Andie is a valued and critical part of the Veteran Certification Office team. Although 2020 was a challenging year, often working extra hours and on the weekends, the nominee tirelessly labored to ensure our students received the veteran benefits they deserve. She acts as VMA’s liaison for our students who utilize benefits while attending the UTSA Paralegal program. Her partnership with the Paralegal program has helped several veterans utilize their benefits while attending the school of Extended Education. She works well with our students and always strives to her best.

  

Award Certificate Icon April 2021 Award Winner
Arts & Humanities Advising

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The Staff Appreciation Team Award goes to the Arts & Humanities Advising Center. Jaylon Wilson nominated this team and described the support they have given him as a deaf disabled veteran that relies on reading lips to communicate. Jaylon mentioned how, “Being in a masked world right now, I have very little discussions with anyone outside of my home. This summer was a heavy load of virtual orientation advising sessions and my team stepped up beyond belief in order to help accommodate not only me but to provide excellent service to our new inbound Roadrunner students. They provide that to me each and every day. Even if they don't receive the award, it's important to me to let others know how much I appreciate them every single day.”

  

Award Certificate Icon March 2021 Award Winner
Kaitlin Jackson, Veteran and Military Affairs

Kaitlin Jackson currently serves as a Veteran Certifying Official I (VCO) and a valued member of the Veteran and Military Affairs (VMA) team. Initially hired as a student worker in 2018, her professionalism and work ethic earned her spot as a full-time staff member in October of 2020. Awarded a BBA in Cyber Security in December of 2020, she navigated the difficulties caused by COVID-19 with ease and confidence. Her attention to detail and positive attitude has continually been a positive reinforcement of VMA’s decision to hire Kaitlin as a full-time employee!

  

Award Certificate Icon March 2021 Award Winner
Financial Aid State and Special Programs Team

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Senior Financial Aid & Scholarship Officers, Nestor Esquivel & Daniel Campos, have led their team to new heights of excellence. Since 2019, the Financial Aid State and Special Programs Team (SSPT) has consistently provided outstanding support and ideas to aid in the Veteran and Military Affairs (VMAs) application of the Texas Hazelwood Act. The Hazelwood exemption process is a detailed and time-consuming activity. That said, with several years of prior experience, the SSPT has always been a reliable partner when approaching difficult approval decisions. In short, the team has been an immeasurable asset to VMA. They are unyieldingly professional and competent; always going above and beyond to achieve the team’s mission of supporting UTSA’s veteran and military-affiliated population.

  

Award Certificate Icon February 2021 Award Winner
Ty Middleton, Human Resource Services

Tymeeka "Ty" Middleton is relatively new to UTSA, but is absolutely a rising star. She brings a ton of extraordinary experience to UTSA, including a military career and many years as an HR professional. Ty is professional and positive, produces results quickly, and is incredibly creative and innovative. As a manager, she listens, is respectful of the history that has come before and trusts the team to do their job and implement the work with no hint of micromanaging. Additionally, Ty tracks all requests and is committed to responding in a timely manner. Her team as Human Resource Services confirms it is a pleasure to work with Ty and they adamantly believes she is a shining asset to UTSA. Staff Senate agrees!

  

Award Certificate Icon February 2021 Award Winner
Payroll Services Team

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Payroll Services truly defines the word teamwork.  They consistently pull together during difficult times to ensure the employees of UTSA do not go without.  The team does this without being asked, and it truly represents their character, work ethic, and loyalty to their department, financial affairs, and the employees of UTSA.  Prior to the pandemic, the Payroll team would assist customers in person, and have since challenged themselves to provide the same level of customer service during this pandemic while interacting with customers via email, phone, and TEAMS.  As one example of their dedication, many have witnessed Payroll provide one-on-one training to employees who could not attend one of their large training sessions.  This team goes above and beyond to ensure every question is answered, every problem is resolved, and every UTSA employee is paid correctly and on time.

  

Award Certificate Icon January 2021 Award Winner
Diana Martinez, Honors College

Diana once said, “Wouldn’t it be wonderful for students to receive the information they’ve been admitted to UTSA, awarded a Distinguished Presidential Scholarship, AND are eligible to join the Honors College all at one time?” Well, what was once casually mentioned in a meeting has now put in place an extraordinary, transformative admission process for students entering the Honors College as of Fall 2021. Patiently addressing questions, providing explanations, and making recommendations, Diana has worked tirelessly with Honors College staff to prepare for the new program’s implementation during the past three months. With an eye to the future, current and new students will benefit from the policies and procedures impacted by Diana’s unyielding willingness to collaborate and guide those around her.

  

Award Certificate Icon January 2021 Award Winner
The College of Business Center for Student Professional Development Team

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The College of Business Center for Student Professional Development (CSPD) team was quick to adapt to the new virtual format and has found innovative ways to continue providing programs and services to students. Since moving to a strictly online format, the CSPD has created an online internship module, which has been viewed by over 1000 students since it was launched this past April. They have diligently kept students informed of remote internship opportunities throughout the launch of the Internship Stories on all social media channels. The team also developed monthly articles in LinkedIn to share recommended LinkedIn Learning Courses with students, aiming to especially reach those whose internships and full-time jobs have been interrupted due to the pandemic. CSPD’S goal has continuously been to keep students engaged and let them know that they are actively present and available to support their success. This is an extraordinary team of dedicated and hardworking individuals!

  

Award Certificate Icon December 2020 Award Winner
Sgt. Eric Weber, University Police

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Sgt. Weber continues to go above and beyond in his daily job responsibilities. As the training sergeant for the police department, he is responsible for ensuring that our staff meet state licensing requirements and continuing education. During the summer budget cuts, he arranged for free training for our officers to become bicycle certified prior to the Fall semester. He then collaborated with campus contacts to provide free housing for the instructors on campus. This resulted in excellent training at no cost to UTSA. He has saved the department thousands of dollars through his keen efforts in locating free furniture and equipment through surplus services and vacating offices! He completely furnished a new facility for the Police Department at the Student Union at no cost to our department. Sgt. Weber continues to go above and beyond his job duties illustrating what it means to be a UTSA Roadrunner through hard work, motivation, leadership, and excellence.

  

Award Certificate Icon December 2020 Award Winner
Digital Learning Team

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Each member of the Digital Learning Team works with an assigned college to provide best practices for online teaching and troubleshooting for issues with Blackboard Learn, course design, and course management in the online learning environment. They also provide ease of access with office hours for course design, the implementation of quality standards for faculty and student success, and improved digital accessibility overall. Moreover, the Digital Learning Team has created over 200 resources such as video tutorials for students and instructors for online learning and teaching. Additionally, they created a Student Support Hub, with resources that benefit both students, faculty, and staff when navigating courses at UTSA. This team has gone above and beyond in support of faculty transitioning their courses online during the Covid-19 Pandemic.

  

Award Certificate Icon November 2020 Award Winner
Kacey Neece-Fielder

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I have had the privilege of working for Dr. Neece-Fielder for many years now. Since Dr. Neece-Fielder has been in our office, she has led our team from just working together, to a “well-oiled” team. She provides excellent service to all personnel that she comes in contact with. It does not matter how big or small the task or question, she treats each person the same – with kindness and a smile. One of her many leadership qualities was being the main point of contact for the Racing to Reaccreditation. Kasey worked tirelessly in making sure all the requirements were met and that the visit was as flawless as possible. After many years and months working for the SACSCOC Reaccreditation, COVID-19 hit. Kasey waited patiently for new dates, then started up the process again – this time virtually. Between Kasey and others, the meetings were arranged and ready for August 3-6, 2020. All her hard work paid off and we were pleased to find out that we had the status of “No Recommendations” from the SACSCOC reviewers. This is quite a feat to achieve. We are so happy and honored to have Kasey in our office.

  

Award Certificate Icon November 2020 Award Winner
Undergraduate Admission Processing Center

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We recognize a team that has been challenged with the continuous changes and effects of COVID-19. The Undergraduate Admissions Processing team, under the leadership of Brandy Garcia, Morgan Beard, and Jenny Hernandez, accomplished the following during the competition of Fall 2020: 

  • Implemented a more automated process to deal with transfer student transcripts
  • Created a process to become test-optional (SAT/ACT) admissions
  • Brought online the new Common Application for Fall 2021
  • Helped the guide the Admissions Processing team to finish the Freshmen application decisions a full two weeks faster than last year; even with 5,280 more Freshmen applications to process than in fall 2019

 We want to acknowledge your hard work and leadership as your team continues to strives for excellence.

  

Award Certificate Icon October 2020 Award Winner
Freshman & International Recruitment Team

The Freshman and International Recruitment Team works with prospective UTSA students. Half of the team is based out of San Antonio and the other half of the team is regionally based throughout the State of Texas. This team works hard year-round, but also gives it their all during 15 weeks of travel season representing UTSA at college fairs throughout the state. Additionally, a few members of the team represent the institution out of state and throughout the world to recruit high achieving students. The team dedicates long hours to represent UTSA in the best light at college fairs, provides presentations to high school students, counselors, parents, conducts individual admission counseling, and tailored specific programming for students. They are the first impression that prospective students see of the institution. None of this would have been accomplished without the dedication and hard work of the staff and leadership of our fearless leader, Beverly Woodson Day. Everyone on this team is passionate about student success, collaborating with our campus and external partners, and providing excellent customer service. They are the secret squirrels that search and recruit the top students from all areas of the state and world. The team has already started to work with the Class of 2021 students!

  

Award Certificate Icon October 2020 Award Winner
Dr. Amanda Haley

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Dr. Amanda Haley serves as the Senior Director of Lab Safety & Compliance at UTSA. Her colleagues describe her as “an exceptional leader with competent management skills, while providing outstanding customer service to our UTSA community.” Throughout the past year, she has strategically redesigned her team based on their strengths and expertise, continuing maximizing her team to their best! Dr. Haley has worked tirelessly ensuring her team members’ safety with the student and PI labs throughout the pandemic. With five different nominations from her own team, Dr. Haley illustrates the commitment to her team, service to our UTSA students, and the community at large.

  

Award Certificate Icon July 2020 Award Winner
Courtney Balderas-Jacob, Dreamers Resource Center

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Courtney has spent the past two years building the Dreamers Resource Center. Through this development, she has supported thousands of students through building strong partnerships with community organizations like working with our local attorneys to offer immigration support for our Dreamer students. She continues to advocate for institutional changes to better support our Dreamer students’ needs. The UTSA Community acknowledges her work with the development of the Dreamer Ally training which has trained nearly 500 UTSA faculty, staff, and students. The center has been acknowledged by Excelencia in Education with the nomination for the center and its continued work with Dreamer students.

  

Award Certificate Icon June 2020 Award Winner
Kaye Steinhour, Financial Services

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Kaye Steinhour, Financial Services Associate II, is our June 2020 award recipient because she provides exceptional services to students, faculty, and staff. She demonstrates leadership qualities and has made a significant contribution within Financial Services, her team, and within the UTSA Community. It has been said that Kaye often receives positive comments regarding her interactions and how she relieves frustrations of those customers that have hit a wall in prior conversations. Kaye is believed to have significantly improved the customer service in Financial Services. Congratulations to you, Kaye, our Staff Appreciation Award winner for June 2020.

  

Award Certificate Icon May 2020 Award Winner
Campus Services Team

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For the month of May, the Staff Appreciation Award went to the UTSA Campus Services department. Outlining the duties of various areas of Campus Service: Transportation, Enforcement, Event Coordination/Garbage Services, Accounting, Technical Support, Customer Services, and Leadership, Campus Services continues to exemplify UTSA’s core values through their dedication to the UTSA community. “It’s ‘All Hands-on Deck!’ If you need us, we’ll be there!”

  

Award Certificate Icon April 2020 Award Winner
Ginger Hernandez, Manager of Administrative Support Operations

April 2020 Award Winner
Ginger Hernandez is described an exceptional candidate for the Staff Senate Staff Appreciation award and has worked in the Graduate School for over 10 years. During that time, the Graduate School has seen many leadership changes, staff changes, and location changes. Change is not always welcomed, but it is the one thing you can count on in life. Even through all the changes and challenges, this person has remained a loyal leader within the Graduate School. During times of staff shortages, Ginger has been instrumental in making sure there is proper coverage for the office; all the time being mindful of the needs of the individual teams. Her dedication to the Graduate School and our staff is evident through her actions and leadership. To summarize, Ginger’s leadership within the Graduate School allowed for a practically seamless transition. This person is a fantastic representative for UTSA and will always go the extra mile, with a smile.

  

Award Certificate IconMarch 2020 Award Winner
William Lansdon, Program Coordinator

March 2020 Award Winner
According to Dr. Michael Logan, “William’s drive to take the lessons from his own transition and apply them toward elevating UTSA from simply being military friendly in name to being military friendly in practice sets a high bar for serving our students. As a disabled veteran himself, William brings a perspective to his position that truly informs meaningful change in the service of his peers at UTSA.” An example of William’s service includes going above and beyond to assist with a grant to provide a service animal to one of our student veterans. He was also able to help in the process of having a car donated to a student veteran who lacked transportation. Additionally, he coordinated a partnership with UTSA Housing and VetsStrong which aims to reduce the reoccurrence of homelessness by providing furnishings and housewares to veterans who have recently acquired housing. To summarize, William has made significant improvements in the way UTSA serves its sizeable military affiliated population (16% of all UTSA students). He has exercised initiative to develop innovative partnerships demonstrating his uncanny ability and his willingness to go above and beyond to support our students when and where needed.

  

Award Certificate IconFebruary 2020 Award Winner
Cindy Dermody, Senior Assistant Registrar

February 2020 Award Winner
Cindy truly exemplifies the core values of UTSA. I have witnessed her collaborating with other departments to ensure we are adequately servicing our students. Have a question? Ask Cindy and if she does not know she would relentlessly work until she gets an answer. Her willingness to help goes beyond the office, specifically, every Monday, Cindy comes in with a bag of groceries for the roadrunner pantry. Very recently, while leaving campus, one of our co-workers fell on some steps in her presence. Using her extensive list of contacts, Cindy worked diligently to make sure the step was fixed immediately preventing someone else from falling. She is always approachable and on a daily basis you could see her moving briskly around campus.

  

Award Certificate IconJanuary 2020 Award Winner
Jolyn Demarest, Occupational Health Coordinator

January 2020 Award Winner
Jolyn was chosen as the January award recipient in part due to her excellent customer service. She also demonstrates leadership qualities and has made a significant contribution within her department and the UTSA Community. Although not everyone is familiar with Jolyn’s position, when they find out what she does, they are glad to know her! As the Occupational Health Coordinator, she helps researchers get the clearance they need to work in the labs and keeps facilities employees up on all vaccinations to ensure their safety while working on the job. Essentially, you can say Jolyn is there for the health and safety of all UTSA employees. She has even gone as far as giving up her own lunch to a staff member on the verge of fainting to help them regain their strength. One staff member noted that Jolyn has always performed her duties “with great conversation, a positive attitude, and a winning smile.” Congratulations to Jolyn!

  

Award Certificate IconDecember 2019 Award Winner
Heather Shattuck, Academic Advisor IV

December 2019 Award Winner
Heather has been with Life and Health Sciences Advising since 2016. In that time, she has served as an Academic Advisor I and, as of 2019, an Academic Advisor IV. In addition to her student advising duties, she has implemented new practices, developed advisor trainings, and mentored new advisors. Through the years, Heather has shown that she is committed to performing her job to the highest of standards. On behalf of the entire UTSA family, we would like to extend our appreciation for your hard work and dedication. Your professionalism is a source of inspiration and we look forward to supporting you in all your future accomplishments. You are a true rock-star on our team! Thank you once again for all your effort. -UTSA Staff Council