Taking school spirit to a new level

Jade Cuevas

“Now and forever I am a roadrunner.”

This UTSA-famous phrase (deriving from the UTSA Roadrunner Creed) is stated by many students at one point during their time on campus. However, one man took this phrase to a literal level.

Meet Mark Herrera, a 2010 graduate from UTSA with a Master’s Degree in Adult Learning and Teaching.

“I’ve always been a strong supporter of education,” Herrera says. “UTSA helped me achieve my career goals. Providing me with that education meant a lot.”

The accomplishment meant so much to Herrera that he decided to get a tattoo of the UTSA logo to honor it. Taking night classes for his undergraduate degree, he missed the feeling of college culture and community.

When deciding to come to UTSA for his master’s degree Herrera finally found what he was looking for. “I fell in love with the culture and the school,” he says.

Herrera’s first tattoo features an eagle with the the abbreviation of U.S. Air Force (U.S.A.F.) under it.

“I was 18 years old and believe it or not, I wasn’t drunk,” Herrera laughs. “I like to joke that it started off as an eagle, but now it’s a turkey.”

All jokes aside, Herrera’s tattoos are more than decoration. “I think it’s a form of expression and has some symbolism behind it to mean certain things. Everything I have has a meaning to me.”

Though his master’s degree was the driving force for getting the Rowdy beak inked on his arm, there was one other reason: football.

“When the football team came along I said, ‘slap it on there,” he laughs.

Truly one of UTSA’s biggest fans, Herrera continues to support UTSA at football and baseball games, often bringing his daughter with him (who he secretly hopes chooses to attend UTSA as well).

Even his co-worker Bryan (whose daughter is currently a freshman at UTSA) passes by Herrera’s office to joke with “UTSA’s number one fan.” “Oh yeah, everybody (in the office) knows,” he says. “His office looks like the bookstore.”