I find your “Commentary” in the January 14, 2014, issue of “The Paisano” very insulting and very discriminatory. I am very proud to be a Roadrunner who finished her BA Summa Cum Laude, finished her MA, was very involved in the life of the University, and has been a faculty member with the Department of Modern Languages and Literatures for ten years, five of those as a Teaching Assistant. Let me tell you, I accomplished all this as a part-time student, at an age when most people think of retiring, having a family to take care of, and working.
I mentioned I was involved in University life. I was president of one student organization and of Sigma Delta Pi, the Spanish Honor Society. I wanted to be more involved but I was not allowed to do so and was discriminated because I was not a full-time student. I was not even allowed to apply for certain scholarships for the same reason. Once more discriminated! But in spite of everything I fulfilled my dream and I am living it now as part of the Department of Modern Languages and Literatures. Ah, another thing, permit me to brag a bit! While being a part-time student I was invited and became a member of five honor societies and I received several important university and/or societies awards. I also managed to finish my Associate Degree in Italian at the University of Maryland University College.
Let’s face it. Not everybody is lucky enough to finish High School and enter UTSA on a full-time basis. The luck is that they can continue their education, obviously important to them since they do it at a later date, as part-time students who have a family, hold a job, and are willing to dedicate to their studies the time they are able to.
How do you dare, young man, to imply that part-time students are practically worthless to the University and that they should be charged more for tuition? How do you dare to diminish the very important and worthy part-time students, the backbone of the University? Tier or not!
I could also include the letter from my son who is very proud of what his mother accomplished as a part-time student and who was irate when he read your “Commentary” but I shall not. His writing is much harsher than mine!
Next time, think before you write to insult the part-time students of UTSA. It seems you consider them second class citizen but, believe me, they are not. They may not all be A students but ALL deserve the respect of the University at all levels.
Gilberta H. Turner Department of Modern Languages and Literatures