Message from the President
By Office of the President
Thursday, 05 14 2015
Dear A&M-SA Community,
As the 2014-15 Academic Year comes to an end, I want to thank each of you for your
commitment, dedication to the University and your unwavering support to our students.
When I became President in January, the month of May seemed a long way away, with
the focus on our Legislative Agenda, launching the Student and Academic Success
Speaker Series, the Budget Forum and immersing myself into this community. Now with
spring classes and finals behind us, my first semester here is drawing to a close. 2015 has
been a fantastic year thus far, and there are great opportunities ahead.
On Friday our commencement ceremony will take place at the Freeman Coliseum at 4
p.m. I look forward to taking part in this extremely important milestone in the lives of our
graduates. I am equally delighted to have been asked to serve as the Keynote Speaker for
this, my first commencement as President. In addition, our newly elected Faculty Senate
President, Dr. Lorrie Webb will also take part in the ceremony by leading the processional
with the University mace and bringing greetings from the faculty. Commencement day
gives us a moment to pause, to reflect and celebrate with our students.
I am pleased so many joined in the Student and Academic Success Speaker Series. The
speakers all commented on the audacious opportunity we have to build a National Model
for Student and Academic Success. As an important step, we will focus on developing a
culture that includes creating opportunities to enhance mindfulness and a sense of
belonging, building a data-driven process, supporting learning outcomes that integrate
high impact practices, and developing programs for experiential learning. It will take all of
us, working together to become the National Model I know we can be.
Looking ahead to next month when the 84th session of the Texas Legislature comes to a
close, I am cautiously optimistic that capital funding for a new building and an exceptional
line item request for downward expansion will emerge. I will be appointing a committee
to lead the development of Student Success that is inclusive of downward expansion
implementation, including, but not limited to the core curriculum regulatory approvals,
high impact practices and strategic enrollment management. I intend to enhance focused
efforts on embracing diversity and inclusion initiatives that elevate our attention across all
students, faculty and staff.
We have much to look forward to in 2015-16, and substantial work ahead of us. Later this
summer we will begin work on the next phase of the University Strategic Plan. We will be
bolstering and reinforcing emphasis on: 1) academics; 2) we will elevate our attention on
our military programs, scholarship and research on veterans and enhancing the usage of
our Patriots' Casa; 3) reenergize our attention to the Alamo University Center (AUC) as
Texas A&M-San Antonio North; 4) explore the infrastructure needed to increase research
and faculty support; and 5) focus on developing our infrastructure to enhance student
support services, University branding and enhance our advancement functions. These
efforts will require us to embrace shared governance with resiliency and agility every step
of the way.
So on Friday with all the pomp and circumstance before us as we witness over 750
graduates cross the stage, I thought to share this quote by Maya Angelou, "I've learned
that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will
never forget how you made them feel."
You each play an important role in how our students, faculty and staff feel about Texas
A&M-San Antonio. You have a life-lasting impact on our graduates. I for one, have felt
welcomed, supported and rekindled by your commitment to our emerging University. We
have much to do here for our current students, our alumni, and those who will join us in
the future. Thank you for being a part of Texas A&M-San Antonio and building traditions
for generations to come!
Dr. Cynthia Teniente-Matson