MAY 4, 2022 — Two pennies may not seem like much, but for first-year students in UTSA’s University College, two cents are starting to have a larger meaning.
The Two Cents for Success tradition is centered around two pennies. The first penny symbolizes the wisdom that students have accumulated throughout their lives. The second represents the experiences, ideas, hopes and fears that encompass their “self.” Together, these pennies signify the “two cents” that students will always have to offer and that they will carry with them as they continue through college and through life.
The tradition originated in the university’s Academic Inquiry and Scholarship (AIS) course in 2019. On the final day of classes each semester, a small ceremony takes place where AIS faculty members explain to students the meaning behind Two Cents for Success. Professors then hand out cards that have an inscription of the tradition and two pennies attached.
“The Two Cents tradition follows you throughout your lifetime, providing you with opportunities to succeed by allowing you to receive and offer information you have learned as a student,” said Mehak Marwaha, a senior in the UTSA College of Liberal and Fine Arts and a current peer mentor. “Since my freshman year, I've been able to use the tips and methods that my professor provided me in my AIS class throughout my academic career and beyond.”
As a peer mentor, Marwaha says that she now offers her “two cents” to assist students with challenges similar to her own and directs them to the educational resources available at UTSA to help them complete their degree.
AIS is part of UTSA’s First-Year Experience, a program that is designed to help first-year students have a smooth transition into college and build a foundation for academic success. Throughout the semester, AIS students explore majors related to their interests and engage in career exploration. The class is required for all first-time freshmen students enrolling at UTSA with less than 30 credit hours.
Rebecca Schroeder, associate professor of instruction in the University College, and John Kainer, a former faculty member in the college, created the tradition. As professors at a relatively young university, Schroeder and Kainer recognized that they were in a unique position at UTSA to build new and meaningful traditions from the ground up.
“Traditions are an integral part of college for many students, and they help promote a sense of community by allowing students across the years to have a shared experience,” Schroeder said. “We wanted to start something that would leave AIS students with a strong feeling of belonging and would remind them of all they have learned and accomplished during their first year at UTSA.”
AIS faculty plan to grow the tradition in the future by holding penny collection drives around campus so current Roadrunners can tangibly contribute to the incoming class’ “two cents.” They are also incorporating a virtual message board using Adobe Creative Cloud Express, where AIS students can leave advice for future freshmen to read during their first week of classes. Additionally, Schroeder hopes to eventually expand the Two Cents for Success ceremony.
“Currently, the ceremony occurs either in-person or virtually depending on the class modality,” Schroeder said. “We would love to host an event outside of the classroom that would welcome all AIS students and take the tradition to a new level.”
The University College serves all UTSA undergraduate students by positively impacting undergraduate education, encouraging scholar development through exploratory programs, and promoting lifelong learning through dynamic, engaged curriculum and research. In addition to AIS, the University College includes the Multidisciplinary Studies degree program, the Writing Program, and the Air Force and Army ROTC programs.
Learn to use the simple but powerful features of EndNote®, a citation management tool. In this hands-on workshop, participants will learn to setup an EndNote library, save references and PDFs, and automatically create and edit a bibliography.Virtual Event
Learn to use Zotero®, a citation manager that can help you store and organize citations you find during your research. Zotero can generate bibliographies in various styles, insert in-text citations and allow you to share sources with collaborators.Virtual Event
This solo exhibition features the work of Delita Martin, a world-renowned master printmaker known for creating representations of black women in complex and luxuriant narrative portraits.Russell Hill Rogers Galleries, UTSA Southwest Campus
Hear perspectives on open educational resources (OER) from a variety of UTSA stakeholders. Learn about recent OER work across UT System, as well as platforms and support available to all UTSA faculty adopting or creating OER.Virtual Event
The UTSA Study Abroad office is pleased to announce the Spring 2024 Study Abroad Fair on Tuesday, March 5, 2024. Explore a world of opportunities through our exchange programs and UTSA-led programs.Sombrilla Plaza, Main Campus
Come celebrate the 30th anniversary of the MAS program in the UTSA College of Education and Human Development.La Villita Room, Downtown Campus
This workshop will teach you how to explore, clean, and transform your data and reproduce the steps you have taken using OpenRefine. Required to install OpenRefine before attending the workshop.John Peace Library (JPL 3.02.32,) 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 promoting access for all. UTSA, a premier public research university, fosters academic excellence through a community of dialogue, discovery and innovation that embraces the uniqueness of each voice.