DECEMBER 8, 2021 — When business administration major Abi Alejandra Caceres first arrived at UTSA, her plan was to earn a degree to fulfill her dream of owning a beauty business. The fall 2021 graduate is leaving with a new dream inspired by the support and encouragement of faculty, staff and fellow students. Abi now aspires to pursue a career in research and higher education leadership.
Born in Honduras and raised in Mexico, Abi came to the U.S. to enroll in college. Her higher education journey opened her eyes to opportunities in higher education that will combine her skills in leadership and management with her passion for people and education.
“My experiences at UTSA have fed my dreams and led me to consider new directions,” Abi said. “While the dream to own a business someday has faded somewhat, the desire to use my business degree in areas of leadership have expanded.”
Abi began her college journey at South Texas College in Rio Grande City, Texas, where she received her associate’s degree in business administration management. Her path led her north to San Antonio, where she earned UTSA’s Distinguished Transfer Scholarship.
Soon after she stepped foot on a UTSA campus, she got involved in several student organizations and was hired as a supplemental instructor for the Tomás Rivera Center at UTSA. She also participated in the Peer Mentoring Program, helping students like herself in UTSA’s First-Generation & Transfer Student Center.
Abi developed a love for research through unique experiences at UTSA. In the summer of 2021, she worked as an intern for the Faculty Success team in the Division of Academic Affairs, where she conducted research evaluating the relationship between faculty professional development and the success and retention rates of first-generation Latino students. This opportunity helped her learn about methodologies, approaches and training programs that had a positive impact on first-time college students.
“I looked for factors that determined if a school was a Hispanic thriving institution,” Abi said. “UTSA fits that mold.”
Another project at UTSA broadened her technical skills as she prepared for the workforce. Abi updated and expanded the university’s Digital Measures database, which maintains faculty records. Abi says the project gave her a better understanding of the teaching history of UTSA’s faculty. She also learned how UTSA Faculty Success gives professors the tools and skills to prepare students for success.
While at UTSA, Abi gained the knowledge and expertise she needs to pursue her dream of building a career in higher education. She also wants to give back to help other students succeed.
Abi credits South Texas College professors Rosemond Moore, Reynaldo Jasso, Lyudmyla Dickinson and Maria Del Carmen Magaly Garcia for laying the foundation of her success at UTSA through their support and inspiration.
“Some of my biggest mentors have been my professors,” Abi said. “They constantly challenged me to believe in my abilities even when I did not believe in them myself.”
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Dr. Michael Doyle has had an immense impact on the field of catalysis and organic chemistry. Join in a one-day symposium. In order to honor Dr. Doyle’s colossal career accomplishments with his upcoming retirement, we are holding a one day symposium eventRiklin Auditorium (FS 1.406,) Frio Street Building, Downtown Campus
The San Antonio Military Health and Universities Research Forum (SURF) attracts presenters from around the nation to showcase the work of students, trainees, faculty and staff. The mission of the SURF conference is to “advance research collaborations among academic, military, and industry partners to improve health outcomes and readiness.”TBD
The NHERI Summer Institute is a free event for early-career faculty, NHERI Graduate Student Council, K-12 educators from the San Antonio area, engineers, and researchers to learn more about the Natural Hazards Engineering Research Infrastructure (NHERI) community.La Villita Room (DBB 1.116,) Durango Building, Main Campus
Connect with peer mentors and fellow first-gen and transfer students, and learn how you can join UTSA's First-Gen programs for the Fall 2023 semester.Mentoring Hub (MS 2.02.02,) Multidisciplinary Studies Building, Main Campus
Building the Dual Language Leader Symposium will provide a safe space for current and aspiring leaders to learn best practices, theories, policies, and systems that support a dual language bilingual education.UTSA Southwest Campus, 300 Augusta St.
Streaming of Spray the Word that will conclude with a discussion with San Antonio's Poet Laureate, Andrea "Vocab" Sanderson.Aula Canaria (BVB 1.328,) Buena Vista Street Building, Downtown Campus
Celebrate Hispanic Heritage Month at our very own street fair - Calle UTSA. We will have activities, performances, food, music, and pinatas to break open! All free to UTSA students, faculty, and staff.Student Union Paseo, Main Campus
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.
To be a premier public research university, providing access to educational excellence and preparing citizen leaders for the global environment.
We encourage an environment of dialogue and discovery, where integrity, excellence, inclusiveness, respect, collaboration and innovation are fostered.
UTSA is a proud Hispanic Serving Institution (HSI) as designated by the U.S. Department of Education.
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.