UIW Community Newsletter - December 6, 2019


Light the Way 2019

On Saturday, Nov. 23, the UIW community celebrated the 33rd annual Light the Way Holiday Festival, sponsored by our friends at H-E-B. More than 12,000 visitors came to campus to enjoy six hours of holiday fun. 

The Sisters of Charity of the Incarnate Word were this year's guests of honor in celebration of the 150th anniversary of their founding. Sr. Mary Henry provided the invocation and Srs. Martha Laura Gaona, Margaret Snyder and Peggy Bonnot flipped the iconic red light switch, illuminating the campus with a million twinkling lights. They were also honored with a special reception prior to the ceremony. 

Sisters sit around a table and look at the camera

In addition to Christmas lights, attendees enjoyed the Kids' Corner, where children took selfies with Santa, decorated cookies with Bird Bakery, rode a kiddie train and took part in activities brought to us by The DoSeum, San Antonio Plastic Bricks and Andretti Indoor Karting & Games. The Sisters of Charity of the Incarnate Word also made a special appearance at the Kids’ Corner, reading the story of Christmas to the event’s youngest guests.

Three Sisters flip a giant, red light switch

More than 50 vendors lined the Holiday Shoppe, giving guests a jump-start on their Christmas shopping. Local vendors featured a variety of handmade crafts, special gifts and fun, holiday-themed products. Thanks to the San Antonio Food Truck Association Food Truck Yard, Light the Way attendees enjoyed treats from 15 food and dessert trucks. Thanks to our friends at Sodexo, guests also enjoyed hot cocoa as they strolled through campus.

UIW campus buildings are lit up and people are gathered around  

UIW students, alumni and parents were treated to an alumni exclusive event in the UIW Student Engagement Center which included a wine and cheese gathering sponsored by Spectrum Reach.

The lights at UIW will be lit every evening at dusk now through the Feast of the Epiphany on Monday, Jan. 6, 2020. Members of the San Antonio community are invited to campus during this time to enjoy the stunning views.


Advent Reflection - Psalm 27:14

Wait for the LORD with courage;
be stouthearted, and wait for the LORD.

Our Lady’s Chapel Services

All are welcome

  • Noon mass Monday - Friday
  • Sunday Mass at 10:30 a.m. and 8 p.m.
  • Sacrament of Reconciliation, 11:30 a.m. Fridays or by appointment with Fr. Tom Dymowski, O.SS.T. at
    (210) 829-3131 or

Solemnity of the Immaculate Conception

The Solemnity of the Immaculate Conception of the Blessed Virgin Mary is the patronal feast day of the United States of America. Today's solemnity celebrates the Immaculate Conception of Mary in the womb of her mother, St. Ann, and Mary's unquestioning “YES” in answer to God’s call to bear Jesus, her son. Her faith and acceptance of God’s word is a model for our lives and the source by which we are touched by God’s grace. Per the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops, “since December 8, 2019, is the Second Sunday of Advent, the Solemnity of the Immaculate Conception of the Blessed Virgin Mary is transferred to Monday, December 9, 2019. The obligation to attend Mass, however, does not transfer. The Optional Memorial of Saint Juan Diego Cuauhtlatoatzin, December 9, is omitted this year.” A service will be held on Monday, Dec. 9 at noon in Our Lady’s Chapel. The 6 p.m. Mass in the Chapel of the Incarnate Word has been canceled.

Christmas Eve Mass

A Christmas Eve Mass (Dec. 24) will be celebrated at 5:30 p.m. in the Chapel of the Incarnate Word (pre-service music beginning at 5 p.m.). This Mass will be the only liturgy celebrated on December 24 or 25. There will be no services held in Our Lady's Chapel on these days. Please note that seating is limited in this sacred space and fire code regulations must be observed when the Chapel reaches capacity. We thank you in advance for your understanding. For more information, please contact Brenda Dimas @ (210) 829-3128 or


Our thoughts and prayers go to: 

  • Mr. and Mrs. John Garza and family on the recent loss of their daughter, Ursula Garza-Hernandez (BAAS ’06)

  • Mrs. Catherine Skefos and family on the recent loss of her mother, Maria Galanos Hetos (BA ’39)

  • Mrs. Peggy Rhodes Kundo and family on the recent loss of her husband, Rev. William Charles Kundo (BA ’76)

  • Mrs. Naomi Klann and family on the recent loss of her mother, Maria Oralia Alvarez (BS ’56)


Baccalaureate Mass

The University of the Incarnate Word will hold its fall Baccalaureate Mass on Friday, Dec. 13 at 5 p.m. in the Alice P. McDermott Convocation Center. The history of the Baccalaureate ceremony is firmly entrenched in the medieval European custom of presenting graduating candidates for the degree of bachelor (bacca) with laurels (lauri) or recognition of their achievement. It is traditionally a religious service of celebration and thanksgiving for the time the graduates have devoted to growing in wisdom at a place of education. 

UIW graduates dressed in their caps and gowns stand for mass

A reception will be held immediately following the Baccalaureate Mass in the Student Engagement Center hosted by the Provost's Office. Tickets are not required, but please click here to RSVP for Baccalaureate Mass by Wednesday, Dec. 11. Please note that while tickets are not required, seating is limited due to fire regulations. Doors to the McDermott Center will be closed once capacity is reached. A maximum of 7 guests per graduate is permitted. Thank you for your understanding and assistance with this matter.


Please join us in celebrating the UIW Fall Class of 2019 at a Commencement Ceremony on Saturday, Dec. 14 at 2 p.m. at the Joe and Harry Freeman Coliseum. This is a ticketed event. A live stream link will be shared next week. For more information, please contact the Office of the Registrar. 

Community News

College Awareness Week

Cardinal Feast

On Wednesday, Dec. 4, UIW hosted the annual Cardinal Feast! Students were invited to dine for free as a volunteer force of faculty and staff bussed tables and served food.

Three students have a conversation seated at a table

Approximately 863 students attended the dinner. A total of 75 employee volunteers assisted before and during the event.

A UIW employee wearing a Santa hat carries a bowl of food

Special thanks to the Office of Campus Life for coordinating this special evening!

UIW President Dr. Thomas Evans poses for a group photo with students

Nights in the Nest

UIW Libraries began hosting Nights in the Nest this week. Students are invited to the Mabee Library to enjoy fun activities to help them de-stress before and during finals. Thank you UIW Libraries for helping our Cardinals gear up for finals! 

UIW students sit around a table and make Christmas cards

Welcome, New Employees!

Human Resources would like to welcome these new Cardinals to the nest! 

UIW employees sit on a bench

Back row, from left to right: Darianne Gutierrez, Financial Assistance Advisor Verification; Tammie Davis, Assistant Softball Coach; Joshua Budlong, Coordinator of Media Relations- Athletics

Front row, from left to right: Priscilla Gonzalez, Clinical Skills Coordinator; Lauren Medina, Business Accounts Coordinator; Dounia Izem, Registration Specialist

UIW employees sit at a desk

Back row, from left to right: Aimee Ponte, Assistant Women’s Golf Coach; Laurel Clement, Traveling Counselor; Mary Banfield, Academic Advisor; Adriana Calzada, Young Adult Minister; Rosalva Richardson, Clinical Counselor; JudyAnn Armijo, Residency Coordinator-SOM; Stephen Cavazos, Nurse Practitioner; Gina Melendez, Clinic Receptionist/ Cashier- RSO

From left to right: Melanie Pena-Delgado, Secretary for BrainPower Connection; Maria Berumen, Clinic Cashier-RSO

Breaking Bread with International Students

Five international students were welcomed into the home of visiting professor, Judith Ruvuna for Thanksgiving as part of the Breaking Bread with an International Student program. Breaking Bread is a fellowship program that provides an opportunity for international students to experience a day in an American home with food, company and conversation. The students enjoyed being part of a family for a day and learning more about Thanksgiving.

UIW students pose for a photo with two young children 

Health-E News

Flu Shots Now Available!

Employee flu shots are now available at the UIW Health Services Clinic. To receive your flu shot, please visit the UIW Health Services Clinic located on the ground level of the Agnese Sosa parking garage. The entrance to the facility located behind the Ila Faye Miller School of Nursing and Health Professions.

When can I go? Employee Flu Shots are available now through December 20, 2019. Employee flu shots will be administered between the hours of 8 a.m. and noon, Monday through Friday. Please stop by at your convenience.

What will I need to bring? Medical Insurance ID, Driver License or University ID, and, if this is your first visit to Health Services, a completed New Patient Form.

What if I do not have UIW medical insurance? If you have other medical insurance, the clinic will bill your insurance. If you do not have medical insurance and are a full time UIW employee, you can still get your flu shot at Health Services and UIW will cover the cost.

What if I cannot make it to Health Services? You can also go to a participating pharmacy such as CVS, Walgreens, HEB, or your physician’s office.

Can my spouse or child get their flu shot at Health Services? At this time only UIW employees can receive their flu shot from Health Services.

While timing of the flu season is unpredictable, seasonal flu activity often begins to increase in October. It is common for the flu season to peak between December and February, but it may last as late as May. CDC recommends that everyone ages 6 months and older receive a flu vaccine by the end of October. It takes about two weeks after vaccination for antibodies to develop in the body to protect against flu virus infection.

You have the power to fight the flu (and Dr. Evans does too)!

Department News

UIW United Way Campaign

Monday, Nov. 4 was the official kickoff of the 2019 UIW United Way Campaign. Each employee received a pledge form and a United Way information sheet. We encourage you to review the materials and decide how you can make a difference in the lives of so many in our community. Below is a link to the 2019 United Way Campaign Video, which shows just how many lives are impacted by United Way. The deadline to submit your form is today Friday, Dec. 6 at noon. If you have any questions, please call the Office of Communications and Brand Marketing at (210) 829-6001 or email us at

Cardinals' Cupboard: Donations Needed

Any UIW student, staff or faculty member is welcome to the Cardinals' Cupboard Food Pantry located at Joeris Hall on the UIW Broadway Campus. Hours of operation are Tuesday through Thursday from 10 a.m. - 2 p.m. Did you know 25% of children identified as food insecure in San Antonio and Texas is ranked #2 in the nation for food insecurity? Help us make a difference by making a donation to the Cardinals' Cupboard!

Top 10 Requested Items:

  1. Cereal
  2. Canned beans
  3. Tuna
  4. Canned soup
  5. Rice
  6. Mac and cheese
  7. Peanut butter
  8. Granola bars
  9. Pasta and pasta sauce
  10. Toothpaste/soap

Monetary and food donations may be dropped off at the Ettling Center in AD 158 or Campus Engagement in SEC 3150, Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. - 5 p.m. To learn more about Cardinals' Cupboard, please contact the Ettling Center at (210) 283-6423.

Cup Runneth Over

Don’t forget to collect your unused toiletries for TRIO’s annual Cup Runneth Over event! Collections will be donated to women and families in transition at a local shelter. Donations will be accepted now through December 2. Please consider donating the following items:

  • Mugs in good condition
  • Hotel toiletries
  • Toothbrushes and small toothpastes
  • Individually wrapped tea bags or packets of hot chocolate
  • Socks
  • Any other small item that would be appropriate and helpful

All donations can be dropped off at SEC 3145. Please call if campus pick-up is needed. For more information or assistance with items collection, please contact TRiO Student Support Services at (210) 805-5812.

Athletic News

Swimmer swims in pool

  A collection of softball bats