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UTSA kicks off Hispanic Heritage Month observations

UTSA kicks off Hispanic Heritage Month observations

SEPTEMBER 14, 2020 — From the history and contributions of the Hispanic community to their strength and resiliency, for the next month the Hispanic community is being recognized as part of National Hispanic Heritage Month.

UTSA, along with the rest of the country, is joining the heritage month observations from September 15 to October 15 with a series of events surrounding the university’s theme, “Voces de Resistencia / Visions of Resilience.”

This year’s events will showcase the stories of and perseverance of the Hispanic community, while also inspiring Roadrunners to face adversity with their own strength.

“The celebration of Hispanic Heritage Month at UTSA involves many unique events that are both fun and educational,” said Traci Guinn Buckley, assistant vice president for inclusive excellence. “The current pandemic has left all of us in a very peculiar, yet creatively challenging situation. The Hispanic Heritage Month task force, which is comprised of over 40 faculty and staff, have placed a lot of time and attention into the events that are being offered to both the campus and community. There is something for everyone with the events that are being offered.”

Explore Hispanic Heritage Month at UTSA.
Learn more about Hispanic community at the university.
Discover UTSA’s Office of Inclusive Excellence.

Since the university’s inception, UTSA has always embraced its Hispanic serving identity. Ranked third in Texas for Hispanic student enrollment, UTSA has a student body that 57% of whom identify as Hispanic or Latino. Most recently, Excelencia in Education, an organization geared toward accelerating Latino student success in higher education, ranked UTSA third out of the top 5 institutions in Texas for awarding bachelor’s degrees to Latino students.

“The unique thing about the task force and the celebration is that it ‘keeps on going…. It’s continuous,’” Buckley said. “Even after the national recognition of Hispanic Heritage Month ends October 15, UTSA will continue hosting cultural events to celebrate Hispanic heritage throughout the academic year. That’s what UTSA is about as a Hispanic Serving Institution.”

This Week’s Events Focus: Indigenous People 

What Does It Mean to Celebrate Hispanic Heritage Month?
Tuesday, September 15 at 11:30 a.m. via Zoom

Yanawena (“the place where I rest my head”) is present-day San Antonio, the seventh largest city in the U.S. and has a 70% ethnic Mexican population. This panel discussion will cover the intersectional identities of the panelists as scholars at a university created to serve this historically underserved community, and the significance of celebrating Mexican American, Indigenous, and Afro-Latina/x/o resistance and creating scholarship in the face of racial violence, Indigenous erasure, and anti-Blackness. The panel will feature Marissa Aki'Nene Muñoz, Claudia Garcia-Louis, and Lilliana P. Saldaña.

Calle UTSA
Tuesday, September 15 (and weekly) at 6 p.m. via Instagram Live

Roadrunners can learn how to make Latin American dishes in the comfort of their own homes—foods that are sure to become favorites. Weekly installments will follow, including a social media challenge. Check out the Multicultural Student Center for Equity & Justice @UTSA_MSCEJ on Instagram for the livestream. 

Spanish Missions: Empire in the Wilderness
Wednesday, September 16 at 1:30 p.m. via Zoom

This event will cover Spain’s process of mission building along the San Antonio River and examine the people as well as the infrastructure that allowed the kingdom to fulfill a destiny created by treaty more than 200 years earlier. 

Racial Justice Book Club
Wednesday, September 16 at 2 p.m. via Zoom

This book club was established at UTSA by members of the campus community to explore social justice issues following acts of racial violence across the nation this year. In observance of Hispanic Heritage Month, the book for this month will explore issues of Latinx identity, diversity, equity, student success and social justice. Weekly sessions will include guest speakers and virtual discussions. 

Charla on Muralism: Past Heritage and Current Projects in San Antonio
Thursday, September 17 at 2 p.m. via Zoom and YouTube

This panel brings together local artists David Blancas, Adriana Garcia, Ana Laura Hernandez and Cherise Munro to talk about their contributions to a rich history of muralism in San Antonio.

Valerie Bustamante

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University of Texas at San Antonio receives ‘transformational’ $40M gift

UTSA’s Mission

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.

UTSA’s Vision

To be a premier public research university, providing access to educational excellence and preparing citizen leaders for the global environment.

UTSA’s Core Values

We encourage an environment of dialogue and discovery, where integrity, excellence, inclusiveness, respect, collaboration and innovation are fostered.

UTSA’S Destinations

UTSA is a proud Hispanic Serving Institution (HSI) as designated by the U.S. Department of Education.

Our Commitment to Inclusivity

The University of Texas at San Antonio, a Hispanic Serving Institution situated in a global city that has been a crossroads of peoples and cultures for centuries, values diversity and inclusion in all aspects of university life. As an institution expressly founded to advance the education of Mexican Americans and other underserved communities, our university is committed to ending generations of discrimination and inequity. UTSA, a premier public research university, fosters academic excellence through a community of dialogue, discovery and innovation that embraces the uniqueness of each voice.