(Aug. 10, 2018) -- When more than 4,000 UTSA students arrive on campus next week to move into their residence halls, most will be living away from home for the first time. And for most of the first-generation students showing up at Move-In Weekend, it will be the first time anyone in their family has experienced living on a college campus. UTSA is making the transition from home life to college life more comfortable for these new students with a First-Generation Living and Learning Community.
The new residence hall learning community, located in Alvarez Hall, will house 40 first-generation students. Two first-generation residence hall assistants will lead the students. A first-gen peer mentor and a faculty coach who was also a first-generation college student will guide them on their academic journey and foster the diverse community at UTSA.
“Our goal is to give all of our students a sense of belonging,” said Brandon Cruz ’16, a UTSA alumnus who was also a first-generation college student. Cruz now serves as the senior program coordinator for the UTSA First-Gen and Transfer Center. “UTSA is their home away from home, and we want them to feel comfortable and know they’re part of the family.”
At UTSA, nearly half (45 percent) of the undergraduate student population is first-generation, and they often are not aware of the resources and opportunities available to them at a university. To cultivate an exceptional student experience, the First-Gen and Transfer Center will provide many resources to the students throughout the year that go beyond the classroom and campus. Special programming for the first-gen wing will ensure the students achieve success with awareness of the assets offered to them at UTSA.
“We’re giving them the guidance and knowledge to utilize as they make decisions on their college path,” Cruz added, “tools that apply to their academic and social success.”
The wing also allows the students to bond through their special connection of being the first in their families on a path to graduate from college.
“Our goal is to create a positive and welcoming community, which we know our first-gen residents will feel from the moment they move in,” said Em de la Rosa, UTSA associate director of Residence Life and Education.
The first-gen students, and thousands more Roadrunners will move in to their residence halls at UTSA on Friday, Aug. 17 and Saturday, Aug. 18 during Roadrunner Days, marking the beginning of the 2018-19 academic year.
Learn more about the UTSA First-Gen and Transfer Center.
Learn more about UTSA Special Interest Housing.
The Department of Social Work introduces new students to the Master of Social Work program.Buena Vista Street Building Assembly Room (BVB 1.338), Downtown Campus
The kickoff to Roadrunner Days, the UTSA community welcomes the thousands of students who move in to their new homes as they begin their journey at UTSA.Various residence halls, Main Campus
After a full day of moving, UTSA students and their families are invited to the party featuring food, swag, dancing and a special performance from the Spirit of San Antonio marching band.Student Union Paseo, Main Campus
This come and go session allows Roadrunners and their families to explore all the great things the UTSA Libraries offers to help students succeed. Join a group on a quest through the library for a chance at prizes and enjoy some ice cream.John Peace Library, Main Campus
Fast Action Trivia is a game where participants interact with fellow Roadrunners to test their brain skills while learning some interesting things about UTSA and have a chance to win actual cash money!Student Union Retama Auditorium (SU 2.02.02), Main Campus
This UTSA tradition is a fun, engaging opportunity for Roadrunners to learn about the facilities, recreation programs and wellness services offered at the Main and Downtown Campuses while also enjoying tons of games and activities with new and old friends.Recreation and Wellness Center Texas Room (RWC 2.214) and San Antonio Room (RWC 2.218), Main Campus
The UTSA Ambassadors are here to help students find their classes before the first day of school! Bring your class schedule to the UTSA Ambassadors table in the Student Union Ski Lodge (near Chili’s Too!), and they will help you navigate the campus to find your classes.Student Union Ski Lodge (SU 1.01.00), Main Campus
Kickback at the Union is a welcome back event for new and returning Roadrunners. Come relax and learn about the Student Union, enjoy free food, games, photo booth, and a chance to connect with each department in the Union. Arrive early for free t-shirt and stay late for a movie.Student Union Paseo and Buildings, Main Campus