Students at The University of Texas-Pan American got a chance to display some rousing Bronc spirit during noontime Sept. 17 at the inaugural Gladiator Day event organized by the Student Alumni Association (SAA).
This new organization, an affiliate of the UTPA Alumni Association, seeks to bring old traditions back to the University while creating new traditions and increased school spirit that will hopefully be cemented within the student population said SAA President John Tamez, a 2008 UTPA graduate in communications now pursuing a master's in business administration at the University.
While Tamez cited bringing back long ago traditional events such as Bronc Rodeo and Cowboy Days, the SAA kicked off the fall semester with a newly conceived Gladiator Day where students were able to participate in such activities as an inflatable obstacle course, joust and bungee cord run. Students also enjoyed free hot dogs, lemonade and popcorn while visiting information booths representing seven campus organizations. Besides the SAA, sponsors of the day included the Student Union, Sodexho, H-E-B, Walmart and All Valley Screen Printing.
Tamez said the organization hopes to offer philanthropic activities and a series of monthly events. By joining, he said, students will have the opportunity to gain leadership skills, develop positive community relations, increase network contact, increase career opportunity awareness and enhance University loyalty and support.
Linda Rios, assistant director for UTPA Office of Alumni Relations and SAA adviser, said the organization's goal is to start cultivating students now for tomorrow.
"Alumni are the backbone of a university. We need alumni to come back and give back to us, to give the opportunity for more students to come to school. We need their support. They also serve as mentors for the Student Alumni Association. We have so many ideas for this organization and will be working closely with the UTPA Alumni Association," she said.
For more information, contact the UTPA Alumni Relations Office at 956/381-2500.