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Press conference focuses on progressing education in San Antonio

Conference highlights partnerships that support educational efforts

Photo courtesy of the city of San Antonio.
Photo courtesy of the city of San Antonio.

SAN ANTONIO – A press conference held Tuesday by Texas A&M San Antonio focused on the topic of progressing education at Texas A&M at San Antonio, along with its impact on the city.

Officials said the press conference highlighted the importance of partnerships with local businesses and other entities that support educational efforts.

"It is an honor to align and collaborate with Councilman Warrick, MLK, Jr. Commission and My Brother's Keeper. Because of the community and political leaders leading this charge, opportunity exists -- opportunity for education, progress, forward thinking and action," Dr. Cynthia Teniente-Matson said. "The support and provision of scholarships from local businesses such as Toyota will allow us to continue to make opportunity possible."

Officials said the Martin Luther King Jr. Commission had a stellar year in terms of scholarship dollars raised from previous years. Under the leadership of District 2 Councilman Alan E. Warrick II and Commission Chair Brandon Logan, the Dream Scholar Program was introduced in 2015 as a call to action for San Antonio colleges and universities to each fund one full scholarship to their respective institutions for minority students.

"We need to help students, parents and our community to establish a mindset that going to college is an automatic part of their educational development," Warrick said.

Logan has worked in securing partnerships and providing hope to many Bexar County students who would like to further their education, officials said.

The My Brother’s Keeper initiative, which officials said was inspired by President Barack Obama and championed by Mayor Ivy R. Taylor, has made huge strides in San Antonio.

The vice chair of My Brother's Keeper San Antonio, Dr. Mike Etienne, spoke about the progress that has been made and the importance of partnerships and scholarship support, like Toyota's, for community programs and initiatives.

"Toyota and the 6,100 employees on our campus desire to create opportunities to enrich the lives of the underserved members of the communities where we live and operate," said Mario Lozoya, director of government relations for Toyota Motor Manufacturing Texas. "As we study the metric of mentors and role models, we feel it is important for our young men of color to have role models in the classroom. We hope to develop a process which can later grow in an effort to bridge this gap. We feel that all corners of our community need to reflect the change of both our community’s diversity and our industry’s technology so that everyone has the opportunity to reach their potential and be an effective and contributing citizen."

The San Antonio MLK commission, in partnership with IconTalks, will welcome Chaka Khan to the Tobin Center for the Performing Arts on Thursday. Officials said the commission will host LeVar Burton on Feb. 11 on the A&M campus, in partnership with St. Philip’s College.

Both events are part of the commission's Distinguished Lecture Series, officials said.

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