History senior Horacio Villarreal is UT’s 2013-14 student-body president. What does he hope to achieve in the role once abolished by its own constituents, and one that was briefly occupied by a comic strip character in 1982? Villarreal’s top priority, he says, is inclusion.
The Alcalde talked with him about his time on the Forty Acres so far—and his burger preferences. Listen to the entire podcast, or read some choice snippets below.
During your first month as student body president, Student Government held a vigil for the victims of the Boston Marathon bombing and the fertilizer plan explosion in West, Texas. Why did you feel that was important?
We did that because we knew those events would affect someone on campus, whether it was two people or 52,000. We wanted to stand up and say, “We’re with you,” because that’s our role. I think our nation really came together with those events happening back-to-back, and it was important to be part of that.
What do you value most about being a Longhorn?
Everyone here is just so genuine. We’re all trying to grow, not only as students, but as future leaders of this state and this country. Everyone comes together and everyone’s welcome. The hard work we all put in to make this campus a little more personal is what makes UT special.
What’s been your favorite class at UT so far?
I’ve had a favorite professor, Dr. [Toyin] Falola. He’s very well established in the history department, and very well known for his charisma. He brings a lot of energy to the table. Getting to learn about Africa, its struggles, and achievements has been really great. I’ve taken three or four classes with him, and they’ve all been very positive.
You’re from Corpus Christi. Does that mean you’re loyal to Whataburger?
Absolutely! If I’m taking a girl on a date, I’m taking her to Whataburger.
Article by Andrew Roush. Published in the Alcade, July/August issue.