A message from UTSA Vice President for Student Affairs - Dr. Gage E. Paine
Each day on campus, I have at least one interaction with a student or staff member that reminds me just how amazing this university is. However, April provides more of these moments than just about any other month. Spring weather has finally arrived, and students fill the campus as they attend class, study (and occasionally nap) underneath the Sombrilla, and engage with fellow Roadrunners in student organizations.
Students are in, as Dr. Gage Paine, Vice President of Student Affairs, calls it, "the sprint to the finish line," both in and out of the classroom. Final exams are only a few weeks away, student groups host end-of-year banquets, and the sunshine literally beams the message to students that summer is within reach. At this point of the year, I try to remind family members that their students might not be as quick to return a phone call or text message, but not to worry. Students are working diligently through this crunch time, and in the process, they are developing valuable skills, including time management, along the way.
So, for the next few weeks, feel free to drop a card in the mail, send a quick email, or even write a message on your student's Facebook wall that encourages him or her to keep up with the hard work and use the resources and support provided on campus as the semester comes to an end. You might not receive an immediate "thank you," but rest assured it will give them a bit more motivation as they make the final turn into the finish line.
Associate Director of Orientation and Family Programs
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Fiesta: A San Antonio and UTSA Tradition
April in San Antonio means one thing; Fiesta is here! Fiesta San Antonio is an 11-day celebration of culture and tradition, embraced by the entire San Antonio community and visitors alike. Across the city, the Fiesta Commission organizes over 100 events, from parades and concerts to cook-offs and art walks.
UTSA will continue the tradition of hosting one of the opening events, Fiesta UTSA (pronounced Fiesta oot-sah), on Friday, April 20, from 11am – 3:00pm on the Main Campus. Student organizations will fill the Sombrilla selling food, artwork, and crafts during this major campus fundraiser. Come out to support students, listen to great music, meet the Fiesta Royal Court, and kickoff Fiesta!
Click on the links below to learn more about Fiesta events:
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Starting Early: Finals Begin May 7
If your student texts you that he was out at Club JPL all night, you have no need to worry. He is not at San Antonio's newest nightclub. Club JPL is the name UTSA students have given to the John Peace Library on the Main Campus, the most popular place to study in the weeks leading up to and during finals.
This spring, the week of finals begins on May 7 after two "study days", during which classes do not meet (Review the online Final Exam Schedule to find your student's exam dates and times based on his or her class schedule). This week typically comes with plenty of stress and caffeine for college students. However, your student's all-nighters and test week anxiety can be avoided by following these study tips, provided by UTSA's Tomás Rivera Center for Student Success.
1. Start early – Preparation for finals begins even BEFORE the actual week of final exams. You cannot cram an entire quarter or semester's worth of information into one or two nights of studying.
2. Regularly attend study groups, such as Supplemental Instruction (SI), or form your own study group.
3. Develop a list of questions – This list should include things that you don't understand and items that you think are going to be on the test. Find answers to the questions that you don't understand, either in your study groups, in class, or in a conference with the teacher. Use your possible test questions for review.
4. For the week before and during exams, life should be as normal as possible and normal habits of sleeping, eating, exercising, etc. should be maintained. College finals are designed to make you think. If you are sleep deprived, you won't be able to comprehend (or answer) the challenging questions you will face.
More strategies for test-taking, as well as time management, note-taking, overcoming test anxiety, and much more, can be found on the Tomás Rivera Center's Online Study Skills Resources website.
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Football Fiesta Spring Game
March Madness just ended, but UTSA is already thinking about football! On Sunday, April 15, the Roadrunners will host fans for the Football Fiesta Spring Game. Before the team takes the field, stop by the Kids Zone to challenge your friends and family to a race on the Bungee Run or try to survive the Last Man Standing inflatable course! Get your picture taken with Rowdy in a full UTSA uniform, including a helmet and shoulder pads! Fans of all ages can enjoy a post-game autograph session with the players on the Alamodome field.
Kickoff is 2:00pm. Admission to the game, family fun at the Kids Zone, and parking at the Aladome are all free!
Visit the UTSA Football Fiesta Spring Game website for more details.
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Family Association Updates
During the most recent Parent Council meeting on March 24, Council members approved eight new Family Fund grant proposals. Although all previous Family Fund grants have supported projects that benefitted UTSA students directly, this round of grants was the first ever to come directly from current students! Through Sponsored Student Organizations (SSO), students were able to identify projects that they felt passionately about and submit their proposals to the Parent Council. Each $500 grant will make a big impact on the student body at UTSA. The projects receiving funds include:
- Safe Spring Break – A campus event designed to educate students on making responsible decisions over spring break and to encourage students to pledge to have a safe spring break.
- Engineers Without Borders – College of Engineering students will travel to Viña Vieja, Peru to install a water pump and help reconstruct homes devastated by recent earthquakes.
- VOICES Fall Festival – Students identified the need to promote higher education to young children to increase college-going rates in Texas. VOICES Fall Festival will bring students from around the state to UTSA for a campus tour, educational games, and positive personal stories from current Roadrunners.
Each project involves many students working across campus, the San Antonio community, and beyond. These grants are only made possible by the generous contributions of our Family Association members. Thank you for your continued support of the Family Fund and the UTSA student body!
Orientation and Family Programs
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Upcoming Events & Volunteer Opportunities
For the Kids Dance Marathon - April 13
• Join FTK, UTSA, and the city of San Antonio as FTK hosts its annual Dance Marathon as participants dance to raise money for cancer research!
13th Annual NIUTSA All Jazzed UP - April 14
• Join us at the Downtown Campus as various jazz performers put on a great show for the crowd!
UTSA Football Fiesta Spring Game - April 15
Fiesta UTSA – April 20
• Come join us for one of UTSA's oldest traditions at Fiesta UTSA under the Sombrilla! Help support various student organizations and enjoy countless varieties of food from "crazy cucumbers" to sausage-on-a-stick while enjoying live music.
Withdrawal Deadline - April 30
• Last day for students to withdraw from a course and receive a W on their transcripts.
Study Days - May 3 and 4
• Classes do not meet.
Finals Exams - May 5-10
Commencement - May 10-12
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