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Message from Dr. Vincent

Dr. Gregory VincentThe Austin community has lost two outstanding members during the past month. We were saddened to learn of Sam Coronado’s death on November 11. President Powers and I honored Sam with a well-deserved Community Leadership Circle Award several years ago. Sam was a gentleman in the truest sense of the word. He was a UT alum and a founding member of the Chicano Art Student Association on campus in the 1970s. He inspired many young artists throughout the nation and supported them through The Serie Art Project.

On December 10, former UT Elementary School teacher and UT alum Michael Adams died following a two-year battle with cancer. He taught technology and robotics at UTES for several years before his cancer diagnosis and was an inspirational leader at the school. His wife Felicia is the current STEAM teacher (Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts and Mathematics). UTES Executive Director Melissa Chavez noted, “Michael taught us all that learning is fun, that we all have something to teach and we all have something to learn no matter what our age.”

We can learn a lot from Coronado and Adams this holiday season—integrity, kindness and humor were their trademarks.

Happy holidays to all and best wishes for the new year.


UT Austin Named HEED Award Recipient for 2013

Excellence in Diversity Award The University of Texas at Austin received the 2013 Higher Education Excellence in Diversity (HEED) award from INSIGHT Into Diversity magazine, the oldest diversity-focused publication in higher education. As a recipient of the annual HEED Award—a national honor recognizing U.S. colleges and universities that demonstrate an outstanding commitment to diversity and inclusion—UT Austin will be featured along with other recipients in INSIGHT Into Diversity magazine’s November 2013 issue. This is the second year the university has been named a HEED Award recipient.

INSIGHT Into Diversity selected HEED recipients based on exemplary diversity and inclusion initiatives, and ability to embrace a broad definition of diversity on our campus, including gender, race, ethnicity, veterans, people with disabilities, and members of the LGBT community.

Dr. Gregory J. Vincent, vice president for diversity and community engagement said, “The University of Texas at Austin’s dedication to diversity and inclusion in the classroom and throughout the campus community was evident as we completed the application for the HEED Award. Not only were the numbers of diverse events, student organizations and initiatives at UT Austin impressive, but the scope of our efforts to meet the needs of diverse students is impressive. This includes programs in nearly every college and school that address different forms of diversity.” Vincent attributed the progress in diversity at the university to President Bill Powers. “President Powers’ commitment to diversity since he took office in 2006 has been a guiding force for creating a more inclusive campus.” Read more.

Community Leaders Celebrated at the MACC and Carver

Each fall semester The University of Texas at Austin honors community organizations and leaders who have made a difference in the Austin community. Hosted by the Office of the President and the Office of the Vice President for Diversity and Community Engagement  at the Emma S. Barrientos Mexican American Cultural Center and the George Washington Carver Museum and Cultural Center, the Community Leadership Awards are highly anticipated and well attended events that celebrate exemplary organizations and individuals who are role models in the areas of civil rights, social justice, health, education and the arts.

Community Leadership Award Honorees, the Mexican American Cultural Center, October 29, 2013:

  • Community Partnership Award ─ FuturoFund Austin and the Workers Defense Project
  • Community Leadership Circle Award ─ Amalia Rodriguez-Mendoza
  • Joe R. and Teresa Lozano Long Legacy Award ─ Texas State Senator Judith Zaffirinii

UT MACC Community Leadership Awards
View the whole MACC set on Flickr.

Community Leadership Award Honorees, the Carver Museum and Cultural Center, December 5, 2013

  • Community Partnership Award ─ Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Incorporated – Beta Psi Omega Chapter
  • Dr. James L. Hill Community Leadership Circle Award ─ Hoover Alexander and Ashton Cumberbatch
  • Dr. June Brewer Legacy Award ─ Texas State Representative Dawnna Dukes

UT Carver Community Leadership Awards
View the whole Carver set on Flickr.

America Ferrera Visits Campus

Dr. Gregory J. Vincent with America Ferrera
Dr. Gregory J. Vincent visits with actress America Ferrera who was on campus for a rally on November 20 organized by the student-led University Leadership Initiative in support of undocumented students on campus.

Thanks to Forestar for Fun and Funding!

A group of Neighborhood Longhorn Program kids, staff and friends visited Forestar for a fun lunch and generous gifts including a large donation to support the program. Thank you Forestar for supporting NLP and the future of these children!

Below: Patrick Patterson and Howard Nirken flank Jim DeCosmo to accept Forestar's generous donation to the NLP kids. View the whole set to see the fun the kids had on their recent lunch trip to Forestar.

NLP at Forestar
View the whole Forestar set on Flickr.

Cool Bevo Recyclable HEB Bags Support Neighborhood Longhorns

Bevo Bag NLPIn support of the Neighborhood Longhorns Program,H-E-B is introducing a BEVO XIV reusable shopping bag statewide. H-E-B hosted a kick-off event to celebrate the launch of the bags on Saturday, December 14th at the H-E-B located at 1000 East 41st Street in Austin.  A portion of the sales proceeds will directly benefit the Neighborhood Longhorns Program.

The Neighborhood Longhorns Program is a DDCE educational program that helps 6,000 Title 1 students in the Austin Independent School District improve their academic achievement. University of Texas fans statewide will be able to enjoy these durable bags, which feature BEVO XIV, while helping a worthy cause.  The bags are available at H-E-B locations statewide. Hook ‘em on education! 

Reaching Out to Help Fans: Texas Athletics Partners with DDCE to Serve UT Sports Fans

Texas Athletics Fan ServicesSports fans with disabilities in recent years started to call DDCE Associate Vice President Linda Millstone, The University of Texas at Austin ADA/504 campus coordinator, about the distance between their parking spots and the football stadium. In the 2010-11 academic year, Lauren Lichterman, an administrative associate with Texas Athletics started what was formerly called the Customer Relations Program.

During the academic year, Texas Athletics hires student assistants to drive golf carts through campus streets in the stadium block by ADA parking spaces to take fans with disabilities to and from designated drop-off points. “It’s kind of like a bus system,” Lichterman said. “We sometimes drop people off at their cars or a designated stopping point. All of the routes are designed to access or serve ADA parking areas as opposed to any general parking spot.” Read more.


Editor: Leslie Blair. Web: Jason Molin

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