UTSA participated in Canstruction, a national competition that helps feed the hungry through a design-build concept. Harrison Pierce, Samantha Singel, Albert Franco, Johnmichael Storey, Audra Biediger and Stephanie Estrada, all UTSA Honors College and College of Architecture students, set up the display, titled "Wrangling Hunger," Aug. 29 at North Star Mall. Through efforts by the UTSA Alumni Association and H-E-B, the team had 4,000 cans of food to build the design, which were later donated to the San Antonio Food Bank.
It's Art, UC
Gallery 23, which will showcase artwork by students, faculty, staff and alumni, opened Sept. 1 in the University Center. The first exhibitor was UTSA President Ricardo Romo, whose photos taken during a recent trip to Africa capture the warmth of the people and the stark beauty of the continent and its animal kingdom. Gallery 23, which plans to host five exhibitions a year, is in UC 1.02.23, near the Fiesta Dancers entrance.
Keep Your Shirt On
A couple of months ago you could lose your shirt on campus and, if you were lucky, it would show up in the Lost and Found office in the Physical Plant Building, where you could claim it. No longer. The Lost and Found stopped accepting all clothing items because "the office was always stinking like a locker room," said Tracy D. Merritt, administrative associate for the UTSA Police Department, which oversees the Lost and Found.
East Is Not So Far
UTSA's Far East connections just keep growing.
The UTSA Department of Art and Art History and the UTSA Confucius Institute hosted an exhibit of 76 color photos of China's most culturally significant sites as part of Fotoseptiembre, the annual festival of photographic art held in September. The exhibit ran in the Arts Building Gallery on the UTSA Main Campus.
UTSA and Kumamoto University in Japan entered into an agreement of cooperation Sept. 3 to establish a program of exchange and collaboration. San Antonio and Kumamoto City have been sister cities since 1987.
The UTSA East Asia Institute hosted its inaugural Chinese Language and Culture Camp in July. Children heard presentations on Chinese culture and history, and learned how to read some Chinese characters and to understand some conversational words. They also participated in arts and crafts and made their own origami frogs.
The East Asia and Women's Studies institutes, along with the Department of English, hosted Professor Xiaoge Luois from Hunan, China, in October. The professor in the College of Chinese Language and Literature at Hunan Business College lectured about Nu Shu, a rare feminine script and literature.
Orchestra, Kansas Rock
The '70s rock band Kansas, known for hits such as Carry on Wayward Son and Dust in the Wind, performed with the UTSA Orchestra in a benefit concert Sept. 17 in Trinity University's Laurie Auditorium. About 1,400 attended the concert, commemorating the band's 35th anniversary. It raised $8,000 for music scholarships. The event was a musical milestone for the 70- member UTSA Orchestra, adding rock music to its repertoire. The students have performed classical symphonies, operas, jazz concerts and, most recently, mariachi with Mariachi Vargas.
In November, the U.T. System Board of Regents approved renaming the Humanities and Social Sciences Building the McKinney Humanities Building to recognize Mary E. McKinney's estate gift to UTSA and the other contributions she made to the university throughout her life.
We Salute You
UTSA is a friend to the military, according to G.I. Jobs Magazine. The mag recently ranked the university among the top 15 percent of all colleges, universities and trade schools nationwide for embracing veterans as students. UTSA had 1,342 vets enrolled during spring 2010 and 1,283 in 2009.
UTSA President Ricardo Romo and his wife, Harriett, help the Alumni Association scholarship fund each year by sponsoring two annual $2,000 scholarships geared toward San Antonio's Fox Tech High School students.
"Over the years, Harriett and I have seen how our alumni scholarship has been instrumental in helping Fox Tech students achieve their educational goals," said Romo, who graduated from Fox Tech in 1962.
"So I invite all of our graduates to get involved with the Alumni Association to help raise funds so more students can realize their dreams of earning a UTSA degree."
Lisa Firmin, associate provost for faculty and student diversity and recruitment, was named a National Latina Leader by the United States Hispanic Chamber of Commerce.
Firmin, who retired from the Air Force as a colonel in July, was honored for distinguished service in the U.S. Armed Forces. She was the highest-ranking Latina.