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Division News

Counseling and Mental Health Center

  • We celebrated the 50th anniversary of the Psychology Internship Program on April 27. Well-known nationally, our program was the first accredited psychology internship program at a university counseling center in the country. 
  • Our Voices Against Violence team hosted Sexual Violence Prevention Month during April. This series of events supported survivors of interpersonal violence and raised awareness for campus prevention efforts. Take a look at the photos from the signature event Take Back the Night.
  • Our staff hosted the third annual Mental Health Promotion Week to promote positive well-being. Events gave students the ability to explore topics like mindfulness, community, diversity, self-care and resilience. 

New Student Services

Shannon Price at retreat

Shannon Price presents at the Orientation Advisor Retreat. 

  • We held a second Orientation Advisor Retreat on April 7 to prepare our student leaders for orientation this summer.

Academic Counselors Association Meeting

Celena Mondie-Milner, Desiree Alva and Kyle St. Nicholas at the Academic Counselors Association meeting

  • Our team hosted the Academic Counselors Association meeting on April 4. Staff presented orientation information and answered questions about the summer sessions.
  • We are inviting UT Austin faculty and staff to participate in our Ask Me! Campaign. They will be asked to wear buttons over the summer so that new students and their families can ask questions while on campus for orientation this summer. Email Melissa Porch if you are interested.
  • Our department is partnering with the Office of Sustainability on Zero Waste at Orientation, a pilot program to ensure less food waste during summer orientation. Partners include University Housing and Dining, Parking and Transportation Services and Athletics.
  • Our staff are partnering with the Office of the Dean of Students on the Zero Waste in the Workplace pilot program in the Student Services Building.

Office of the Dean of Students

  • Our Leadership and Ethics Institute staff is currently accepting student applications for ProjectLEAD. This year-long project management and leadership development program gives students the opportunity to manage projects for the community. Encourage students to review the positions description to learn more about the commitments and responsibilities.
  • Our Student Activities team hosted the 12th annual Evening of the Stars on April 17. This event recognizes student organizations and leaders for their contributions to the campus community.

UT Outpost

  • Following our Name the Pantry, Fill the Pantry social media contest, our on-campus food pantry and career closet will be named the UT Outpost. Our Student Emergency Services team will host a grand opening celebration this month.

Office of the Vice President for Student Affairs

President's Student Employee of the Year Luncheon

President Gregory L. Fenves, Amy Greenspan (Human Resources), Senior Vice President and Chief Financial Officer Darrell Bazzell and Dr. Lilly at the President's Student Employee of the Year Award luncheon

  • We showcased how student employees gain marketable skills to prepare them for life after graduation on Twitter, Instagram and Facebook April 9–18. As the largest employer of students on campus, we partner annually with the Office of the President and Human Resources to host the President’s Student Employee of the Year luncheon on April 9.

Vice President for Student Affairs Reunion

Dr. Lilly, President Fenves and former Student Government President Keshav Rajogopolan at the reunion

  • Our staff welcomed students, alumni, staff and friends to the Vice President for Student Affairs Reunion, hosted in association with the Office of the President. The event honored Student Government, Senate of College Councils and Graduate Student Assembly. View photos from the event and photo booth
  • Dr. Lilly will send an email to undergraduate students on May 2 encouraging participation in the UTell Us survey. Her first email was sent on March 7.
  • Our team hosted a True Colors® seminar on April 26 for new Division staff, graduate assistants, graduate research assistants, interns and fellows. Staff can register for the session on May 2.
  • Division assessment representatives are currently working on a final report to wrap up the 2013–2018 Strategic Plan. Work continues on the 2018–2021 Division Strategic Plan which will launch in September.
  • Teryl McFerrin attended the Council for Advancement and Support of Education (CASE) Conference on Diverse Philanthropy and Leadership with development colleagues from across campus.

Recreational Sports

Tennis On Campus National Championships

Brooke Turner (The University of Alabama), Randall Ford and Stephanie McAlpine (The University of Texas at Arlington) at the Tennis On Campus National Championships

  • Randall Ford accompanied the Texas Club Tennis Team to compete in the United States Tennis Association (USTA) Tennis On Campus National Championships in Orlando, Fla. He served as a tournament staff member as well as a vice chair of the NIRSA Championship Series. (NIRSA was formerly known as the National Intramural and Recreational Sports Association.) 

Darci Doll, Chris Stewart and Chad Zimmerman at Pancakes for Parkinson’s

Longhorn Run

(front row) Hannah Covington, Sarah Bubolz, X Xiaomin and Adrienne MacKenzie; (back row) Dixon Hankins, Grant Fisher, Chris Stewart, Chrystina Wyatt, Joe Wise, Mark Munguia and Chad Zimmerman at Longhorn Run

  • Longhorn Run 2018 was the largest to date with 5,135 registrants – 68 percent of them first-time participants. See photos. 

RecSports Poker Walk

  • Register now for the RecSports Poker Walk to celebrate National Employee Health and Fitness Day on May 9. 
  • Our team recognized 15 student employees with endowed scholarships totaling $32,500 for their outstanding contributions to the department. 

Randall Ford, Nicole Olmeda, Ana Dison (Cockrell School of Engineering), Tom Dison, Jennifer Speer and Pete Schaack at the Hall of Honor  

  • We honored the 2018 class of Hall of Honor inductees on April 26 for making significant contributions to the formation and success of Recreational Sports. Among them is former university President Bill Powers. See photos. 

Intramural Flag Football Championships

Darrell K. Royal–Texas Memorial Stadium jumbotron announces Intramural Flag Football Championship Tournament on April 11. 

  • Our staff partnered with Athletics to host the spring Intramural Flag Football Championships at Darrell K RoyalTexas Memorial Stadium on April 11. See photos.  

Texas Parents

  • Our team is currently signing up new parents and families for Texas Parents Association complimentary and supporting memberships.
  • Our staff continues to prepare for Family Orientation, a day-long program introducing families to the university and resources to support their student’s successful transition to UT Austin. We mailed an informational postcard to the families of 17,000 admitted freshmen last month.
  • We will mail the New Parent Guide to 9,000 freshman families this month. This magazine introduces them to university resources and policies.
  • Our team laid 141 brick pavers on the Student Services Building Plaza. Parents and families purchased 133 bricks, and Texas Parents provided eight bricks in honor of students who passed away during the 2017–18 academic year.

Texas Parents Ambassadors Council 

Dr. Lilly addresses the Texas Parents Ambassadors Council.

  • Dr. Soncia Reagins-Lilly provided a university and Division update to the Texas Parents Ambassadors Council on April 13. At a luncheon following the meeting, we recognized Outstanding Student Award recipients. Read about the winners and finalists on the Division of Student Affairs’ UT Austin Campus Life Update. Check out the photos.

The Center for Students in Recovery

Sierra Castedo at the Spring Luncheon

  • We hosted our annual Spring Luncheon on April 21 to celebrate graduating seniors and the center’s donors.
  • We are hosting Drs. Bob Duke and Art Markman, from KUT Radio’s Two Guys on Your Head, along with KUT’s Rebecca McInroy, on May 14, 1–2:30 p.m. They will discuss addiction and recovery. This event is free and open to the public. 
  • Our team partnered with the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA), BeVocal, UT Wellness Network and Operation Naloxone to host a second UT Prescription Drug Take Back Day on April 25. This event provides a free, anonymous way to safely get rid of potentially expired, unused and unwanted prescriptions. 

Seminar on Addiction and Recovery

Dr. Jessica Cance (Texas Department of State Health Services) and John Harris at the Seminar on Addiction and Recovery

  • We hosted Dr. Jessica Cance, Texas Department of State Health Services, at our Seminar on Addiction and Recovery (SOAR) on April 23. She spoke about public health approaches to addressing substance misuse and addiction. Check out  photos

Jessica Hughes Wagner (Moody College of Communication) at Coffee Talks 

  • We are participating in Youth Substance Misuse and Addiction Pop-Up Institute until May 16 by hosting daily Coffee Talks. This group of UT Austin researchers is examining the impact of addiction on youth and will host a series of events to share their research with the campus community. Check out the calendar.

University Health Services

  • Our Office of Health Promotion team held the inaugural Healthyhorns Play Safe Series to educate students on healthy sexuality, including safer sex. They hosted workshops on anatomy/contraception, sexually transmitted infections (STIs) and free HIV testing. Partners included Gender and Sexuality Center, BeVocal, Voices Against Violence and AIDS Services of Austin.
  • We collaborated with the Counseling and Mental Health Center to provide continuing education on eating disorders to our nursing staff, Integrated Health counselors and other medical staff
  • The City of Austin honored 36 student organizations on April 12 for their involvement with Healthy Student Organization Program, led by William Mupo. Organizations were recognized for implementing healthy activities amongst their members and across campus.

University Housing and Dining

  • Our bakery staff were featured in a video showcasing our spring cookies. University Communications partnered with our marketing team to create the video that was featured on UT Austin’s Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. The video was also recognized as the university's share of the day on March 30.

Tiana Lindberg, Vero Salazar and Marissa Ducharme at the Student Leadership Banquet

  •  Our Residence Life team held the annual Student Leadership Banquet on April 23This event is a celebration of student staff leadership and service to the residence halls, including resident assistants, desk assistants, student night staff, University Recognition Hall Association members, Residence Hall Council members, faculty mentors and residence life professional staff. Dr. Lilly gave the opening remarks. See the photos.

The Breakfast Club

Lauren Pelchat with the Honey Nut Cheerios Honey Bee at The Breakfast Club dinner

  • Our J2 and Kinsolving Dining teams served breakfast favorites for dinner on April 19. The Breakfast Club included games and activities.

Matt Rogers at the UT Farm Stand and Sustainability Showcase

  • Our sustainability team partnered with campus organizations to host UT Farm Stand and Earth Week Fair on April 19. This was the last UT Farm Stand of the academic year.

Nije Capri Lane and Melissa Garland at the Brackenridge Garden Seminar

  • Our University Apartments staff hosted a garden seminar on April 21. Residents learned garden basics and tricks. 
  • Our Residence Life team celebrated the student participants in the Attitudes Skills Knowledge (ASK) certificate program on April 27. This program is an opportunity for residents to enhance their intercultural competence through a series of guided events, activities, discussion groups and cultural engagement. 

University Unions

  • Our Advisory Council recognized this year’s recipients of the J.J. “Jake” Pickle Citizenship Award and the Pal – Make a Difference Award at a luncheon on April 13. Afterward, Dr. Lilly addressed the group during a question and answer session. See the photos
  • Students can make reservations starting today for outdoor spaces, Hogg Memorial Auditorium, and general-purpose classrooms and marketing spaces in the Student Activity Center, Texas Union, Student Services Building and 2609 University Avenue. Staff will be able to reserve spaces in beginning May 8.
  • Our staff are upgrading the Student Activity Center (SAC) outdoor area to provide more gathering and dining space for students, student organizations and campus visitors. The project will increase the number of seats on the south side of the building from 60 to more than 240. The new area will have power outlets, WiFi, a water fill station and other amenities. Construction completion is scheduled for fall 2018.


(front row) Raymond Salas (University of Texas Rio Grande Valley), Kristen McElroy (University of Texas San Antonio), Liz Brown (University of Texas Arlington), Samantha Dwight (University of Texas Tyler) and Dr. Lilly; (back row) Sierra Castedo (The Center for Students in Recovery) and Stephanie Epstein (University of Texas at Dallas) at the UT System-wide Collegiate Recovery Expansion Workshop

Dr. Soncia Reagins-Lilly presented a Division of Student Affairs update to the UT System-wide Collegiate Recovery Expansion Workshop hosted by The Center for Students in Recovery. 

Dr. Chris Brownson, Counseling and Mental Health Center, began his term as president of the Texas University Counseling Center Directors Association (TUCCDA).

Chris Burnett, Office of the Vice President for Student Affairs, facilitated activities on the values of civic engagement and leadership development at School of Social Work’s “Generalist Social Work Practice: Knowledge, Values and Skills” class on April 26.

Texas University Counseling Center Directors Association Conference

Gareth White and Zac Carter (Counseling and Mental Health) present at the Texas University Counseling Center Directors Association (TUCCDA) Conference.

Zac Carter and Gareth White, Counseling and Mental Health Center, presented “Structural Integrity: Therapeutic Relationships with Fat People” at the TUCCDA Conference.

Student Educator Forum

Mandy Colbert (University Health Services) and Michelle Emery (Counseling and Mental Health Center) at the Leading and Learning: A Student Educator Forum

Mandy Colbert, University Health Services, and Michelle Emery, Counseling and Mental Health Center, presented two workshops the inaugural Leading and Learning: A Student Educator Forum on April 21 hosted by BeVocal and the Sanger Learning Center. Colbert also served on the planning committee.

Dr. Melissa Eshelman, Counseling and Mental Health Center, began her term as president of the Texas Society of Psychiatric Physicians (TSPP).

New Student Services re-certified as a Platinum Green Office through the university’s Green Offices Program. 

Residence Life Award Ceremony

(front row) William Duval, Florentino Lopez-Rivera, Petra Suarez, Francisco Rodriguez and Emily Nelson; (back row) Jaime Chinchilla, Floyd Hoelting (former University Housing and Dining Executive Director), Evangelina Robledo, Doreen Taylor at the awards ceremony

Francisco Rodriguez, University Housing and Dining, received the Floyd B. and Jo Hoelting Quality of Life Residence Life Award at a ceremony on April 5. The award recognizes full-time staff who have made outstanding contributions to students’students’ quality of life. Jaime Chinchilla, William Duval, Emily Nelson, Florentino Lopez-Rivera, Evangelina Robledo, Petra Suarez and Doreen Taylor were also recognized as finalists. 

Justin Samuel, University Housing and Dining, was selected to serve on the faculty of this year’s NASPA Dungy Leadership Institute. The institute is a nationally-recognized program aimed at developing leadership skills, enhancing cultural competencies and preparing NASPA Undergraduate Fellows for a career in student affairs.

Star Steward, University Housing and Dining, presented “Examining the Students of Color Experience and Campus Climate” to the Honors College at Texas State University. The lecture is based on her thesis “Bienvenidos a Texas State University: Obstacles and Challenges Faced by Hispanic First Generation College Students and The P.O.D.E.R. Experience.” 

Dr. Kimberly Burdine, Counseling and Mental Health Center, Dr. Alfiee M. Breland-Noble, The Steve Fund and Dr. Ted Gordon, Office of the Executive Vice President and Provost and College of Liberal Arts, served as panelists for the “Empowering Students of Color to Thrive Through Emotional Well-being” webinar on April 30. Marian Trattner, Counseling and Mental Health Center, organized the webinar for the NASPA Region III Wellness and Health Promotion Knowledge Community.

Association of College Unions Annual Conference

Alisha Cahue (Office of the Dean of Students) and Jennifer Zamora (University Unions) at the Association of College Unions - International 2018 Annual Conference

Jennifer Zamora, University Unions, was inducted as Association of College Unions – International president-elect of the Board of Trustees at the 2018 Annual Conference. 

The President's Staff Awards

President Gregory L. Fenves hosted the 57th Annual President’s Staff Awards to honor outstanding achievements of university staff. He also honored 74 Division staff members for their combined 1,245 years of service to The University of Texas at Austin. Congratulate your Division colleagues listed below.

Outstanding Staff Awards

Matthew Olson, Counseling and Mental Health Center, and Alyssa Ray, Office of the Dean of Students, received the 2018 Outstanding Staff Award at the President’s Staff Awards on April 19.

Staff Service Awards

Counseling and Mental Health Center

Sylvia Chen, 10 years
Solis Rough, 10 years
Mark Zentner, 20 years

Office of the Dean of Students

Robert Vargas, 30 years
James Velasquez, 15 years

Office of the Vice President for Student Affairs

Cathy Kinsey, 30 years

Recreational Sports

Sarah Bubolz, 25 years
Dixon Hankins, 10 years
Quincy Hodges, 10 years
Derek Knight, 20 years
Steve Mercer, 35 years
Ruben Ramos, 10 years
Pete Schaack, 30 years
Lisa Sova, 15 years

Texas Parents

Laurie Alvarado, 20 years
Susie Smith, 10 years

University Health Services

Barbara Blizzard, 25 years
Ginger Bloomer, 15 years
Beverly Blythe, 15 years
Karen Eckert, 10 years
Ericka Holmes, 10 years
Kevin Jones, 30 years
Nicole Lackowski, 10 years
Marvin Mackey Jr., 40 years
Melinda McMichael, 35 years
Andrew Mendoza, 25 years
Cherylyn Murray, 15 years
Robert Reed Jr., 20 years

University Housing and Dining

Bartam Abbott, 20 years
Maria Acosta, 15 years
Gloria Allen (retired), 20 years
Jose Belmonte Jr., 10 years
Dina Bricker, 10 years
Joseph Bulak, 20 years
Patricia Burgess, 10 years
Jorge Calderon, 10 years
Alan Carlson, 10 yeas
Ray Carter, 20 years
Alicia De La Cerda, 15 years
Ricky Early, 30 years
Louis Episcopo, 10 years
Blanca Garay, 10 years
Yanelys Guerrero Diaz, 10 years
Victoriano Gutierrez Gonzalez, 10 years
Juston Hairgrove, 15 years
Mario Hernandez, 10 years
Randal Hurley, 10 years
Virginia Jaramillo, 15 years
Christine Jenner, 10 years
Eloisa Lopez, 15 years
Gregory McAfee, 20 years
Sharon McMullen, 10 years
Carlos Mendieta, 15 years
Thomas O'Donohue, 15 years
Jose Orozco, 10 years
Janis Porter, 30 years
Alma Reynoso, 25 years
Francisco Rodriguez, 15 years
Patricia Ruiz, 10 years
Rodolfo Sandoval, 10 years
Michelle Thompson, 25 years
Paulette Thompson, 10 years
Lucero Torres, 10 years
Roque Valdes, 15 years

University Unions

Steven Cook, 15 years
Isaac Gutierrez, 10 years
Robert Lawrence, 30 years
Maria Marshall, 10 years
Gloria Munoz De Ramirez, 20 years
Nick Parras, 10 years
Jeffrey Sladcik, 10 years
Bobby Veail, 15 years
Robert Waters, 30 years
Rufus Welford Jr., 10 years

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