My name is AJ Marroquin. I’m a junior at UTSA with a major in English and a minor in Anthropology. I’m also a first-generation student. Here at UTSA, I’ve found groups of people that have matched and encouraged development in my personality and allowed me to explore various interests related to my identity and professional and academic goals. Currently, I’m participating in a Mellon research program focusing on Chicana feminist criticisms in literature, connecting to my broader interest in looking at issues of gender and sexuality in texts and how they reflect societal changes. I hope that while attending grad school, I can highlight the narratives of marginalized groups in my research by focusing on identities like Chicanxs, women of color, and members of the LGBTQIA+ community.
A successful mentee meeting includes working with the mentee to focus on their classes and concerns regarding coursework and professors, encouraging them to attend campus events and get involved in organizations that matched their interests, giving them tips for how to interact with their classmates and get to know the UTSA family. The same mentees who had little to say at our first meeting now drive the whole thing, telling me stories about study groups with their friends, their activities around campus, and general enjoyment of their time as college students. It makes me so proud to know that I saw this transformation happen and was able to help nudge it along when needed. For me, that’s the most fulfilling part of being a mentor because it encourages me to do the same.
Hello, my name is Angela Monita and I am a first-gen, transfer student majoring in communication. I am a senior and was just accepted into graduate school to pursue a Master of Science in Business. I am involved in the National Society of Leadership & Success, UTSA Club Golfers, Public Relations Society of America, and the UTSA Campus Rec Aquatics Team. My career goals include attaining employment with Valero, Exxon, or USAA and one day becoming a business owner.
Being a peer mentor allows me to share my knowledge, wisdom, and own life experiences with other students that need guidance or just a friend to talk to. The most valuable aspect of mentoring is that the student mentees are just as much of a mentor to me as I am to them. Both of us work together to obtain educational success, friendship, or even just an academic source to refer to when we need a little extra help. I hope as a mentor I can improve the quality of the transitional experience to UTSA for my mentees and make it a more enjoyable opportunity for anyone wanting to give this great university a shot.
My name is Diana Dimitriu. I am double majoring in Electrical and Computer Engineering and minoring in Mathematics. I am a senior but it is only my second year as a full time college student. I came from high school with about 60 college credit hours which I transferred to UTSA. This is thanks to dual credit, AP credit by examination, and summer and evening classes at both San Antonio College and Northwest Vista. I have been on both the President’s List and the Dean’s List. I am a College of Engineering Ambassador and a member of Tau Beta Pi (the Engineering Honor Society). Lastly, this semester I have the fortunate opportunity to mentor a robotics team from Leal Middle School.
To me, being a mentor means to be someone that people can trust. You don’t have to have all the answers but if you can gain the trust of your mentees then you have done your job. To have someone’s trust means that you do everything in your power to help them. If you know the answer to their question, then gaining their trust would involve getting the answer to them as swiftly as possible and ensuring that the person understands that answer. If on the other hand, you don’t know the answer, then trying to find that answer or a place with the answer to that question is what you need to do. Never tell someone false information.
Glennette Castillo is a Biology major, pre-med student, and graduated from Tom C. Clark High School. She was born and raised in San Antonio Texas and wholeheartedly supports the Spurs. Her favorite student organization on campus is For The Kids Dance Marathon. She is also an avid reader of the Paisano student newspaper and a volunteer with the Terry Scholars and FAME Society.
She hopes to use her Biology major in her pursuit of an M.D. at the UTHSCSA School of Medicine.
As a peer mentor, Glennette can offer her organization skills and time management ideas to improve as a student, as well as support in achieving any academic, social, or volunteering goals. She is fluent in Spanish, able to read, write, and speak it. She is here to help you discover the different resources UTSA has to offer, find ways to get involved on campus, and provide encouragement and guidance.
Hello! My name is Isis Burks and I am a junior here at The University of Texas at San Antonio. I transferred from Harris-Stowe State University, in St. Louis, Missouri, in August 2015. I am majoring in Kinesiology with a concentration in Athletic Medicine. I plan to attend Physical Therapy school and receive my doctorate in PT. I would love to rehabilitate professional, collegiate, and youth athletes. I am a member of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People, VOICES, and the Black Health Professions Organization here at UTSA. I have received the United States National Army Reserve Scholar Athlete Award and the University of Texas at San Antonio Distinguished Transfer Scholarship.
Mentoring is so valuable because it is nice to have someone that will lend a listening ear and offer help when it is needed. Being a mentor means that I can offer advice and guidance to my fellow peers. I was a mentor in high school and I loved that I was able to assist people in the best way that I could, whether it was academic, family, or social problems. I try to be a great peer mentor because as a transfer student, I know what it is like to be in a completely new environment and not know anyone or have anyone to talk to. I wish I would have known about RTE when I got here because they supply you with so many resources and information along with a peer mentor that has been in your position and that can speak from personal experience. I strive to be the mentor that I wish I could have had.
Currently a graduate student in the Social Work Program, James is an Army veteran with 17 years of service currently in his last semester of his Masters in Social Work of program at UTSA. James also advocates and volunteers with homeless veterans of San Antonio. James has several awards from his 4 overseas combat deployments as well as being awarded the Bexar County “Hildago” award in 2016. James also serves as the President of Social Work Honor Society and was named Social Work student of the year for 2015-2016.
“I understand the value of mentoring because I had lots of mentors. PIVOT, for me, is a program that shines as an exemplary example of what we trying to accomplish at UTSA, which is to bring in more students to get engaged with their learning, get them excited and keep them excited about their work, help them find a community, and use that community to continue to develop their skills even after they leave UTSA.”
Joy Rose is in her 2nd year at UTSA with a major in Public Health. She is a peer mentor for RTE, secretary for The Health Honor Society, and Health Ambassador for Professor Yin’s Diabetes screening program. As a former flute/piccolo player of 9+ years, she enjoys listening to music, shopping, and staying up to date on recent health events. In her free time she hangs out with friends and catches up on school work!
My name is Katie Moheit. I am a transfer student now finishing my junior year here at UTSA. My father is retired U.S. Air Force, so I am a transfer student from both the Northern Virginia Community Colleges and Northeast Lakeview College. My major is English with a concentration in Professional Writing; I hope to use this degree to become an editor one day. In addition to loving books, I also enjoy cooking and eating. When I have free time away from school and work I also love traveling with my husband. A life goal of mine is to travel to all 50 states and as many countries as possible; so far I have been to 19 states and 2 countries.
Having a mentor can provide endless opportunities. Mentors are an irreplaceable resource for any situation: academic, professional, and personal. I find the best part about being a mentor is that I am not the only one assisting those that I am mentoring; they are assisting and teaching me things as well. I hope to help each mentee, in at least one way, to reach their goals.
My name is Luisa Cruz Garza. I am a senior in UTSA studying bilingual education. I am an international student from Mexico. I am also a transfer student, coming from Southwest Texas Junior College. I am in BESO (Bilingual Education Student Organization). When I graduate, I want to become a teacher of bilingual, English and Spanish speaking, children. I specifically want to teach children from low socioeconomic statuses since I feel it would be more rewarding and enriching. I want to start a Master’s program next fall in bilingual literacy.
Having a mentor is very beneficial. Peer mentors can also help their mentees personally and academically. Academically, the peer mentor can show new organizational skills, time management skills, learning styles and tips to help their mentee. Personally, a peer mentor can help by supporting and encouraging mentees in their decisions. Mentors can also listen to their problems and guide them to a better pathway than the one they were on. Being a mentor means having the ability and responsibility to help others. It means that I will help students by empowering them and providing the resources necessary for them to accomplish their goals.
My name is Mailaine Patton and I am a senior at UTSA. I am a first generation, non-traditional transfer student. I was raised in California, where my father served 23 years in the US Navy. After high school I went to Mt. San Jacinto Community College then decided to explore the world by moving to Hungary. I was blessed to spend 5 years in a little picturesque college city in Hungary attending an international medical school. I had to leave Hungary and move back to America due to lack of financial aid. My dad had retired and my family moved to San Antonio so my new home became Texas. I have been attending UTSA since spring of 2014. I am new to the RTE program this year and couldn’t be more excited. I wish when I transferred to UTSA I had access to a program like this to ease the transition. I believe that this program will help so many students. When I am not in class or working with RTE I am an active member in UTSA’s pre-dental society and a UTSA student health services peer education mentor. I am a biology major with hopes to be a dentist. I am very passionate about the healthcare field and hope to spend my life helping people live a happy healthy life, one smile at a time.
Looking back to when I transferred to UTSA, I wish I had a mentor. Starting a new school is stressful, but it doesn’t have to be. It should be a fun exciting experience, and a chance to thrive in limitless opportunities. Mentors provide a sense of community for those who are new, which is really important in college, especially here at UTSA. Mentors are here to help mentees succeed by providing support, whether that is academic or emotional. I am new to the RTE program and hope to positively impact someone’s life. Through this experience, I want to grow and I know this will help me become a better student. All that I will learn from being a mentor will aid me in my future endeavors.
Hello! My name is Olivia Comas Wood. I transferred from San Antonio College after spending a year at the University of Arkansas in Fayetteville. Now I am a sophomore here at UTSA, majoring in anthropology and minoring in physics. I’m involved as the Social Media officer for the Anthropological Society. I enjoy reading, writing, and filming in my spare time as well as researching documentaries. My life goals include a doctorate in anthropology, a master’s in physics or engineering, and founding a production company which utilizes the principles of cultural anthropology and houses ethnically and culturally diverse group of employees and creative minds to connect with a diverse audience. In my career, I’d like to study how community outreach impacts the relationship between law enforcement and young adults within the community.
Hello future mentee! My name is Richard Robles and I am a senior here, graduating this May in Multidisciplinary studies where I am studying; philosophy, education, and sociology. My original degree was in education where I wanted to teach fourth grade, but due to me attending five different schools in the last six years I had to change my degree. I actually enjoy my new degree plan where I get to study multiple studies. I plan on returning to UTSA for my Post Baccalaureate and get my teaching certification next year. My wife was in the military which required us to move around a lot, but I always stayed focused on my degree. There were plenty of times that I felt like I would never graduate because of the many credits I would lose every time I would transfer. I never had a mentor at any of my schools but my father went to graduate school here at UTSA and my wife went to graduate school at UT Austin, and they played the mentor roll for me which helped. It has been a long journey to get here but a well worth one. Staying focused and organized helped me to be recognized to the Dean’s List at the University of Alaska Fairbanks, and the Honor Roll here at UTSA.
I am so proud to be a mentor. After being offered this position I realized that I do have a lot of advice for transfer students and non-traditional students that I have gained from attending five different colleges across the U.S. I understand the frustration of losing credits, and the importance of asking your advisor to petition a class from a past school for credit. I am married with two kids under the age of three, and being able to balance work, school, and your family life isn’t always easy, but it can be done. I invite you to come by our office today and see what a mentor can do for you.