Latest campus and coronavirus information Roadrunner Roadmap
Thursday, April 15, 2021

Alumni get creative with challenges for first UTSA Giving Day

Alumni get creative with challenges for first UTSA Giving Day

APRIL 6, 2021 — From the looks of their social media, it’s hard to deny the competitive spirit that emanates from former Roadrunner Football player Sean Ianno ’14 and his wife, former Ms. UTSA Rebecca Smith Ianno ’14. Their stories often show them pushing each other to personal bests while running, hiking and even surfing. That competitive nature is almost as palpable as their UTSA pride. The weight room in their Hawaii home features the Roadrunner mascot head.

So it’s no surprise that when the Iannos heard about the first UTSA Giving Day, they turned it into a competition—all to benefit the cause of their alma mater.

“Sean mentioned it, and we started coming up with fun ideas to motivate people to give,” said Rebecca. At $200, Sean will dump a bucket of ice water on Rebecca. At $400, they will play egg roulette, where one of them will end up wearing the remains of a smashed egg.

And then one idea made Rebecca pause: “I asked him, Would you really do that?”

“It’s all for a good cause, and we’re really excited to see our friends and family participate.”

The challenge in question was Sean agreeing to let Rebecca put makeup and eyelashes on him once the couple reaches $1,000 in gifts through their personal Giving Day link. At $2,000, Sean will also wear an outfit and don Rebecca’s Ms. UTSA crown.

“It’s all for a good cause, and we’re really excited to see our friends and family participate,” said Rebecca. (Sean’s mom, Karen Ianno ’89, is also an alumna.)

statue artworkAnother alumna is also getting creative with inspiring gifts to the Carlos Alvarez College of Business. Miranda Miller Trynoski ’17 is holding a raffle, of sorts. She shared via Twitter that three lucky donors will receive a special art design—created especially for them by Miranda—representing their time at UTSA.

“I am really hoping it motivates people to get involved. Every donation—even $5—makes a difference for students. I’d love to see the Alvarez College of Business come out on top for UTSA Giving Day and want to do my part to help.”

All of the university’s academic colleges, the UTSA Alumni Association, and many student success initiatives from across the university are participating in the giving day events. For 1,969 minutes from earlier today until 7 p.m. on April 7, Roadrunner Nation is coming together to celebrate UTSA pride and raise vital funds for university causes. Gifts to many projects are being amplified, thanks to donor challenge funds, and a leaderboard is tracking which colleges or programs are on top.

The Alumni Association is one organization offering up funds to encourage donors. It has challenged several of the association’s chapters, both inside and outside Texas, to create scholarships for current students from their areas. The association is matching gifts dollar for dollar, all in an effort to help students in need.

To take a challenge or participate in other ways, visit the UTSA Giving Day website.
Watch a special cameo from San Antonio Zoo’s Timothy the Hippo.

“It is really wonderful to see our alumni getting involved,” said Steve Woodall, interim executive director of the Alumni Association. “Our chapter leaders have really stepped up to lead the charge for new scholarships. And to see the creativity from Miranda, Sean and Rebecca, it’s really inspiring. We’re grateful for the leadership we’ve seen for UTSA Giving Day from our alumni. Thank you!”

UTSA Today is produced by University Strategic Communications,
the official news source
of The University of Texas at San Antonio.

Send your feedback to

UTSA Today is produced by University Communications and Marketing, the official news source of The University of Texas at San Antonio. Send your feedback to Keep up-to-date on UTSA news by visiting UTSA Today. Connect with UTSA online at Facebook, Twitter, Youtube and Instagram.




UTSA nets $20M gift from Carlos Alvarez, will rename business school

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.