Dec. 27, 2019 — Roots were planted for UTSA biochemistry major Alejandra Lorenzen’s future before she was even born. Living in Mexico, her parents knew moving to the United States would bring better opportunities for their family.
A few months before Lorenzen was born, her parents packed up their belongings and settled in McAllen. By the time she reached seventh grade, her family had moved to San Antonio, where her love for science began to bloom while attending Harmony Science Academy.
When it was time to apply for college, Lorenzen was accepted to several schools across Texas, but she chose to stay in her hometown and attend UTSA.
“I saw a lot of promise at UTSA, especially when it came to doing research,” Lorenzen recalled.
She was accepted into the Research Initiative for Scientific Enhancement-2, a training program designed to enhance opportunities for underrepresented students in science. She’s spent the past 2.5 years working in Soo Chan Lee’s laboratory at the South Texas Center for Emerging Infectious Diseases at UTSA researching mucor, a drug-resistant fungus found all over the world that is harmful to humans with low immune systems.
“My passion is to find solutions to problems and help others along the way,” Lorenzen said.
Through RISE’s support, Lorenzen also landed an internship at the University of Rochester Medical School in New York the summer of 2018 where she researched the causes of rare eye diseases in Tingting Yang’s laboratory.
“My education at UTSA had laid down the foundation and opened my eyes to different research opportunities I can explore in my future,” she said.
While continuing her education and research, Lorenzen also juggled family responsibilities. That didn’t stop her drive to finish her education in 4.5 years.
As she prepares to graduate this month, Lorenzen is grateful for her experiences at UTSA. She is currently applying to biophysics Ph.D. programs with the dream of one day working in industry or government.
“I love UTSA,” she said, “and I’m glad I chose to stay in my hometown. As the university grows, the value of my degree will only grow too over time.”
Roadrunner Days events welcome UTSA's newest students and helps our returning Roadrunners learn strategies for success in the new year.Various locations, Main and Downtown campuses
Join the UTSA contingent as we honor the memory and work of Martin Luther King Jr. in this citywide march. The City of San Antonio has sponsored this march on the east side of the city down MLK Drive since 1987.MLK Academy, 3501 MLK Drive, San Antonio
This exhibition, curated by Libby Rowe and Scott Sherer, presents the work of women artists who are compelled by their commitments to investigating and transforming social and cultural legacies and contexts.UTSA Art Gallery (ART 2.03.04), Main Campus
UTSA will further honor King with the university's annual MLK Day of Service. Roadrunners are encouraged to participate in the service day, located in various locations, including helping to beautify campus.Various locations, Main Campus
Celebrating the Year of the Rat, the 33rd annual Asian Festival will feature a wide spectrum of Asian cultures with family-friendly events and performances. Enjoy authentic Asian foods with a menu including Vietnamese, Korean, Thai, Pakistani, Chinese and Filipino cuisines. Vendors will sell clothing, artwork, dolls, silk items, jewelry and other exotic gifts.Institute of Texan Cultures, Hemisfair Campus, 801 E. César E. Chávez Blvd., San Antonio
Peniel E. Joseph, founding director of the Center for the Study of Race and Democracy at UT Austin, will discuss his book “The Sword and The Shield,” which focuses on the lives of Martin Luther King Jr. and Malcolm X.Student Union, Denman Room (SU 2.01.28), Main Campus
The Heart Walk will be held at all three campus locations starting at the same time. Support Go Red for Women Day by wearing red.All UTSA campuses
The University of Texas at San Antonio is dedicated to the advancement of knowledge through research and discovery, teaching and learning, community engagement and public service. As an institution of access and excellence, UTSA embraces multicultural traditions and serves as a center for intellectual and creative resources as well as a catalyst for socioeconomic development and the commercialization of intellectual property - for Texas, the nation and the world.
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