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Division News

Counseling and Mental Health Center

  • Our Voices Against Violence team will be hosting Sexual Violence Prevention Month during April. Events will include Take Back the Night, an open-mic speak-out, and “I like LIKE You” and “Get Sexy. Get Consent.,” interactive theater performances.
  • Our staff are offering two new workshop series to help students process overwhelming emotions, difficult relationships and adjustments, and academic problems. The new four-part skill-building workshops are Social Effectiveness 101: Pro Tips for Dealing with Stressful Interactions and Emotional Wellness Workshop.
  • We will be hosting the third annual Mental Health Promotion Week during April 9–13. This series of events promotes positive well-being, giving students the ability to explore topics like mindfulness, community, diversity, self-care and resilience.

New Student Services

  • Registration for summer orientation opened to students on March 7. They can register until 10 days prior to their session. View the schedules for freshman and transfer orientations.
  • Registration for Summer School Orientation opens on April 4.
  • Planning for Longhorn Welcome, Aug. 24–Sept. 8, is underway. This annual series of free events gives new students the opportunity to begin their experience on the Forty Acres with a supportive community.

Office of the Dean of Students

  • Our Student Activities team is currently hiring for Dean of Students Ambassadors through April 4. These students join Dean’s Squad, the official Office of the Dean of Students outreach and promotion team. Encourage students to apply at Hire a Longhorn.
  • Our Leadership and Ethics Institute staff are accepting applications for ProjectLEAD. This year-long project management and leadership development program gives students the ability to learn skills to manage projects for the community. Review the requirements. Encourage students to apply by April 6.
  • Our staff will host the 12th annual Evening of the Stars on April 17. This event recognizes student organizations and leaders for their accomplishments and contributions to the university.

Office of the Vice President for Student Affairs

Carol Longoria and Vicki Wooten at the Friends and Alumni Reception

  • We cohosted the UT Austin Friends & Alumni Reception during the 2018 NASPA Annual Conference with the College of Education’s Program in Higher Education Leadership. Check out the photos
  • Vice President for Student Affairs and Dean of Students Dr. Soncia Reagins-Lilly will send a second email to undergraduate students on April 30 encouraging participation in the UTell Us survey. Her first email was sent on March 7.
  • Our staff is partnering with the Office of the President and Human Resources to recognize the President’s Student Employee of the Year winner and finalists at a luncheon on April 9.
  • Virginia Luehrsen is the new advisor to the Terry Scholars program. The Terry Foundation scholarship supports 259 UT Austin students with tuition, books and cost of living.
  • We are partnering with the Office of the University Ombuds and Student Government to host Dinner with 16 Longhorns on April 18. This intimate gathering allows students to share stories and personal experiences.
  • Our staff hosted a Dean's Breakfast in March and February to share information about Division programs, facilities and services with academic partners.

Recreational Sports

RecSports Job Fair

Ross Rodriguez discusses job opportunities with a student.

  • We shared employment opportunities with students and conducted pre-screenings at the two-day RecSports Job Fair in late March.
  • There’s still time to register for the Longhorn Run. Sign up online or receive a $5 discount by signing up at the free Yoga on the Plaza, April 3, 6 p.m., Gregory Gym Plaza.
  • Darci Doll and Joe Wise attended the NIRSA Regional Basketball Championship tournament last month. (NIRSA was formerly known as National Intramural-Recreational Sports Association.) They accompanied two students who were selected to officiate at the tournament.

Explore UT

Dixon Hankins and Ross Rodriguez at Explore UT

Texas Parents

  • Family Orientation registration opened on March 7. This day-long program introduces parents and families to the university and provides resources to support their students’ successful transition. Separate programs are offered for families of freshman students and transfer students.
  • Texas Parents memberships for the 2018–2019 year also opened on March 7.
  • We are hiring students to help with Family Orientation this summer: Family Orientation Student Leader and Membership Recruitment Student Leader. Deadline to apply is April 6.
  • During the Ambassadors Council luncheon on April 13, we will recognize the Outstanding Student Award winners and finalists. This award recognizes graduating senior students who demonstrate exceptional leadership, scholarship, character and service.

The Center for Students in Recovery

  • We will participate in Youth Substance Misuse and Addiction Pop-Up Institute, a group of UT Austin researchers who will examine the impact of addiction on youth. The Office of the Vice President for Research launched the Pop-Up Institute program to support interdisciplinary teams of researchers, faculty, staff and students. The Pop-Up group spends one year preparing for a series of events focused on one area of research. Check out the calendar.
  • We invite the campus community to celebrate graduating students in recovery and thank donors at our annual Spring Luncheon, April 21, noon–2 p.m., Texas Union, Santa Rita Room. The luncheon is free, but RSVP is required.
  • Our team is partnering with the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA), BeVocal, UT Wellness Network and Operation Naloxone to host a second UT Prescription Drug Take Back Day, April 25, 10 a.m.–3 p.m., Littlefield Fountain. This event is a free, anonymous way for members of the community to safely get rid of expired, unused and unwanted prescriptions.

University Health Services

  • William Mupo partnered with Recreational Sports and University Housing and Dining to launch the “Get KINetic” program. The 10-week program consists of a 45-minute workout at Kinsolving Residence Hall.

Mandy Ackerman at Gear Up for a Safe Spring Break 

  • Our Office of Health Promotion team hosted Gear Up for a Safe Spring Break at locations across campus March 1-2, and 5-7. They partnered with Counseling and Mental Health Center, Office of the Dean of Students, BeVocal and SAFE to to hand out hundreds of sleep kits, gratitude journals, ear plugs, safe sex supplies, snacks, phone wallets, hand sanitizers and first aid kits.

University Housing and Dining

Back row: Rick Early, Randy Porter, Aaron Voyles and Mylon Kirksy; Front row: Rene Rodriguez, Hemlata Jhaveri, Melanie Grice and Adriana Rojas at Jhaveri's farewell celebration

  • Our team said farewell to Executive Director Hemlata Jhaveri at a celebration on March 28. She is headed to the University of California San Diego to serve as the executive director of Housing Dining Hospitality. Associate Vice President for Student Affairs Tom Dison is serving as interim director; a national search will soon get underway. See the photos.

NASPA Annual Conference
Vero Salazar, Justin Samuel, Tiana Lindberg and JD Castro at The Placement Exchange.

  • We recruited complex coordinators at The Placement Exchange during the 2018 NASPA Annual Conference. On campus, we also recruited for them during the College of Education’s Program in Higher Education Leadership Placement Exchange. 
  • Our Residence Life team is hosting the Attitudes Skills Knowledge (ASK) program March 28-April 11. This series of events, activities, discussion groups and cultural engagement opportunities cultivates students’ cross-cultural knowledge and communication skills.

Housing and Dining staff
Kinsolving dining staff at Explore UT 

  • Our staff served more than 6,950 visitors during Explore UT. Groups dined at J2 and Kinsolving Dining throughout the day. View the photos.

Sotear Kuy
Sotear Kuy at the Cook Wise cooking class

  • As a part of National Nutrition Month, Sotear Kuy taught four Cook Wise classes. The classes gave an introduction to cooking, food safety and recipes students can prepare in their residence hall rooms. 
  • Staff, faculty, students and campus visitors can check out the last UT Farm Stands of the semester on April 4 and 19, 11 a.m.–4 p.m., Jester Plaza.
  • Grab fresh produce at UT Farm Stand on April 4 and 19, 11 a.m.-4 p.m., Jester Plaza.

University Unions

  • Campus Events+Entertainment, the largest event-planning student organization on campus, hosted the annual Forty Acres Fest on March 24. Our staff advise the students in charge of planning the events. View the photos from the afternoon festival.
  • Campus Events+Entertainment also hosted the annual Cesar Chavez Legacy Dinner on March 29 featuring Juanita Valdez-Cox. Check out the photos
  • For the Student Endowed Centennial Lectureship on March 28, Campus Events+Entertainment hosted President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf. Iwas president of Liberia and internationally known as “Africa’s Iron Lady,” she.” She is also a2011 Nobel Peace Prize Laureate, a Presidential Medal of Freedom recipient, Grand Croix of the Légion d’Honneur recipient and one of Forbes’ “100 Most Powerful Women in the World.” See photos. 


Nowotny Medal

President Gregory L. Fenves, Jane Bost (former Counseling and Mental Health Center staff member), Andy Smith (former University Unions staff member) and Dr. Lilly. 

President Gregory L. Fenves honored former Division staff members Jane Bost and Andy Smith with the Arno Nowotny Medal at the Faculty and Staff Awards on March 23.

Claudette Campbell, University Unions, presented “Are Student Unions Public Spaces? How One Student Union Changed a Building Access Policy” at the 2018 Association of College Unions International (ACUI) Annual Conference. 


 Julie McElrath and Boomer Mackay (University High School), Sierra Castedo (The Center for Students in Recovery) and Holly Engleman (University Charter School) at SXSW EDU

Sierra Castedo, The Center for Students in Recovery, presented “Educating Students in Recovery from Addiction” with Holly Engleman, University of Texas Charter School, and Julie McElrath and Ducvinh Mackay, University High School. 

Food Waste Panel Discussion

Robert Mayberry (University Housing and Dining), Kathy Green (Central Texas Food Bank), Russell Cavin (Keep Austin Fed) and Neil Kaufman (University Housing and Dining) at the Food Waste Panel Discussion

Neil Kaufman and Robert Mayberry, University Housing and Dining, participated in a panel discussion on food waste following a Campus Events + Entertainment screening of the documentary “Wasted! A Story of Food Waste.” Will Ross, Office of the Dean of Students, also participated in the event by offering information about the newly-launched on-campus food pantry and career closet.

An Evening with UT

Melissa Porch (New Student Services) and Ryan Colvin (University Housing and Dining) at An Evening with UT

Melissa Porch, New Student Services, and Ryan Colvin, University Housing and Dining, presented to newly-admitted students at An Evening with UT in Houston. Admissions hosts events across the state to prepare new students for the college transition. Celena Mondie-Milner, New Student Services, presented at the event held in Austin last month.

Cameron Tepper, University Housing and Dining, was awarded the Southwest Association of College & University Housing Officer (SWACUHO) Bob Huss Outstanding Graduate Student Award for his contributions, commitment and loyalty to residence hall living. 

National Recognitions during the 2018 Student Affairs Administrators in Higher Education (NASPA) Annual Conference:

ProjectLEAD, a program of the Leadership and Ethics Institute in the Office of the Dean of Students, received a Silver Excellence Award. Alyssa Ray and Mary Cantu-Garcia prepared the application that garnered the award.

NASPA Annual Conference

Reggie Robles (NASPA's Men and Masculinities Knowledge Community) and Aaron Voyles (University Housing and Dining) at the 2018 Student Affairs Administrators in Higher Education (NASPA) Annual Conference

Aaron Voyles, University Housing and Dining, was recently awarded the Best Newly Published Research Award for his article “Exploring the Gender Performance of Men Student Affairs Professionals” written with Saralyn McKinnon-Crowley, Office of the Dean of Students

Division presenters at the 2018 Student Affairs Administrators in Higher Education (NASPA) Annual Conference:

  • Chris Brownson, Counseling and Mental Health Center, Erika Jonietz, Graduate School, and David Reetz, Rochester Institute of Technology: “College Student Suicidality, Well-being, and Academic Success”

NASPA Annual Conference

Rita Miller (Office of the Vice President for Student Affairs), Aaron Voyles (University Housing and Dining) and Brooke Bulow (Office of the Vice President for Student Affairs)

  • Brooke Bulow and Rita Miller, Office of the Vice President for Student Affairs, and Aaron Voyles, University Housing and Dining: “Telling Your Story: Innovative Ways to Share Your Impact Using Data” 

NASPA Annual Conference

Lori Pindar (Clemson University), Brandon Jones (University Housing and Dining) and Cherese Fine (Clemson University)

  • Brandon Jones, University Housing and Dining, Cherise Fine and Lori Pindar, Clemson University: “Beyond the Jersey: Critiquing our Engagement with Black Student Athletes on Campus” 

NASPA Annual Conference

Shauna Sobers (University Housing and Dining)

NASPA Annual Conference

Marian Trattner (BeVocal) and Gustavo Molinar (The Ohio State University)

  • Marian Trattner, BeVocal, and Gustavo Molinar, The Ohio State University: “Meeting the Demand: How Utilizing Peer-education for Mental Health May Be One Effective Way for Counseling Centers to Increase Their Outreach Efforts”
  • Aaron Voyles, University Housing and Dining, Brandon Nelson, Appalachian State University, and Andrea Sell, University of North Carolina School of the Arts: “Learning from Each Other: Working Collaboratively with Administrative Support Staff”

NASPA Annual Conference

Andre Manukyan (Glendale Community College), Aaron Voyles (University Housing and Dining and Brandon Nelson (Appalachian State University)

  • Aaron Voyles, University Housing and Dining, Brandon Nelson, Appalachian State University, and Andre Manukyan, Glendale Community College: “Staying Connected and Committed in a Transient Field: Addressing Sense of Community for Student Affairs Professionals” 

Division Presenters at the 2018 NIRSA Annual Conference (NIRSA was formerly known as National Intramural-Recreational Sports Association): 

NIRSA Annual Conference

Front row: Mark Munguia, Nicole Olmeda, Chad Zimmerman, Hannah Covington, Adrienne MacKenzie, Shelby Fletchter and Joe Wise; Back row: Jennifer Speer, Randall Ford, Chrystina Wyatt, Pete Schaack and Travis Hilterbrand 

  • Hannah Covington, Recreational Sports, Caroline Dotts, Georgia Institute of Technology, Eric Knee, Indiana University-Bloomington, Kristi Levanduski, The Ohio State University, and Celeste Siggers, The University of Alabama: “Lightning Talks-Let’s Talk About It: Guiding Student Staff through Difficult Conversations”
  • Darci Doll, Recreational Sports, Dan Hazlett, Georgia Institute of Technology, and Jacob Tingle, Trinity University: “Student Employee Attrition and Retention: How Research Can Inform Practice”
  • Randall Ford, Recreational Sports, Scott Flickinger, Cornell University, Valerie McCutchan, NIRSA Headquarters, and Oscee Wheatfall, III, Texas A&M University-College Station: “The NIRSA Championship Series”

NIRSA Annual Conference

Jennifer Speer (Recreational Sports) and Catherine Camp (The University of Florida)

  • Jennifer Speer, Recreational Sports, Catherine Cramp, University of Florida, and April Lovett, Florida State University: “Friend-Raising and Fundraising-Engaging Alumni and Participants” (photo)
  • Chrystina Wyatt, Recreational Sports, and Kari Whitmarsh, The Ohio State University: “Fitness Roundtable"
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