Meet a Roadrunner: Santiago Hyslop III believes in the power of giving back

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(Oct. 21, 2015) — Meet Santiago Hyslop III. Through his philanthropic pursuits as president of Iota Beta, the UTSA chapter of Pi Kappa Phi fraternity, he is leading an effort to give hundreds of people with disabilities the tools to fulfill their dreams.

Pi Kappa Phi is the only national fraternity to own and operate its own philanthropic organization, The Ability Experience. Founded in 1977 under the name Push America, the organization serves people with disabilities and instills in its members a dedication to lifelong service.

Since 2009, UTSA undergraduates and alumni have taken the mission of The Ability Experience and expanded on it in ways that only Roadrunners can.

Under the Criminal Justice major's leadership, the UTSA chapter hosts annual fundraisers and projects both on campus and in the community. It’s hosted 24-hour bike-a-thons on the UC Paseo, helped build wheelchair ramps across the state with the Texas Ramp Project, and helped make local camps ADA-accessible.

“Helping those less fortunate than we are has been a major influence in my life. Putting a smile on a person’s face is a priceless feeling, and I’m glad I can help do that,” Hyslop said.

Since becoming president of UTSA’s chapter of Pi Kappa Phi, Hyslop has seen first-hand the good that community service and raising awareness can do for underserved populations. He wants to share that message with the UTSA community.

“Our mission is to create a community, one relationship at a time, where the abilities of all people are recognized and valued,” Hyslop said. “Through our dedication to service, we want to transform public perception of what Greek life means. It’s an essential part of our fraternity experience.”

Recently, Hyslop participated in the Ability Experience’s annual Journey of Hope, a cross-country bike ride across 32 states totaling more than 12,000 miles. According to the project’s website, the event raises funds and awareness for people with disabilities and annually raises more than $500,000 each year.

Hyslop said that the trip changed his life, and that his overall experience with UTSA’s Pi Kappa Phi chapter has helped make him a better person and leader.

“The skills that I have learned through being president of the UTSA Pi Kappa Phi chapter have helped me become a better person in the relationships that I have with my family, friends and the community,” Hyslop said. “I want the community to see the ability in all people.”


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