The Word: UIW Community Newsletter - October 30, 2020


34th Annual Light the Way: Holiday Drive Edition

UIW Light the Way Holiday Drive image with logo.

Celebrate the 34th Annual Light the Way, presented by H-E-B, from the comfort of your own sleigh (vehicle) this year! Light the Way is coming to you in a safe, socially distant format. You'll be able to enjoy a night under a million twinkling lights at the beautiful University of the Incarnate Word campus in a new, drive-thru experience.

This year's Light the Way experience will include a tour of the UIW campus, performances by UIW students, event activations along the route and a chance to see our special guests Red the Cardinal and Santa Claus!

The Light the Way Holiday Drive will be offered Nov. 20, 21 and 22 from 6 - 9 p.m. Admission is free, but ticket reservations are required. Tickets will be available beginning Monday, Nov. 2 at 10 a.m. 

If you miss the celebration, we invite you to visit our campus from your vehicles starting Monday, November 23 to enjoy the lights that will remain lit every evening through January 6, 2021.

Alumni who register for any Home Sweet Homecoming event by Sunday, Nov. 1 will be entered for a chance to win a special Light the Way alumni exclusive!

Light the Way Website

Homecoming Registration


Rosenberg School of Optometry Dean Named Fulbright Scholar to Poland

A headshot of Dr. Timothy WingertDr. Timothy A. Wingert, dean of the Rosenberg School of Optometry, has been named a Fulbright Scholar to Poland by the J. William Fulbright Foreign Scholarship Board which is overseen by the United States Department of State’s Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs. 

The Fulbright U.S. Scholar Program offers teaching, research and combination teaching/research awards in more than 125 countries. Opportunities are available for college and university faculty and administrators as well as for professionals, artists, journalists, scientists, lawyers, independent scholars and many others. Fulbright is the most widely recognized and prestigious international exchange program in the world, supported for more than half a century by the American people through an annual appropriation from the U.S. Congress and by people of partner nations. The program actively seeks out individuals of achievement and potential who represent the full diversity of their respective societies and selects nominees through open, merit-based competitions.

As part of this award, Dr. Wingert will teach students in the program and work with faculty and administration at the Poznan University of Medical Sciences regarding curriculum and academic programming.

The World Health Organization describes interprofessional education as having students from two or more health professions learn about and from each other with a goal of improving overall collaboration and health outcomes. According to Dr. Wingert, “This project will allow me to experience the approaches of other health care professions and the approach of the same profession in another country and health care system. That experience will give me another perspective to add to the discussion in enhancing interprofessional education at UIW and beyond.”

This is Dr. Wingert’s second Fulbright U.S. Scholar award to Poland in addition to his previous Fulbright Specialist award to Ghana. Congratulations, Dr. Wingert!

Music Faculty Perform for National Conference

Dr. Orit Eylon sings and Dr. Ara Koh plays the pianoDr. Orit Eylon, associate professor of Music, Dr. Blythe Cates, part-time voice faculty and Dr. Ara Koh, part-time piano faculty, were selected as one of two vocal performance ensembles invited to perform for the 63rd College Music Society (CMS) National Conference. Their performance was on Saturday, Oct. 10. Originally scheduled to held in Miami, FL the conference was held online for the first time in its history.  The conference theme was “Fostering Equity and Opportunity in Music” addressing questions of gender, cultural or ethnic diversity and inclusion in music making and learning. 

Their performance featured composer Gisela Hernández Gonzalo’s Nueve Canciones. Gisela Hernández Gonzalo (1912−1971) was a Cuban composer. Aware of the political necessity, she established ties with the Castro government in return for recognition of her activities as a music teacher and composer. She was also a member of the nationalistic Grupo Minorista that led a movement to incorporate Afro-Cuban sounds into larger forms of music. Hernández taught music at the Hubert de Blanck Conservatory and with Olga De Blanck Martín, director of the conservatory, she developed a music education system that made significant changes in Mexican music education. With De Blanck, she also co-founded Ediciones de Blanck publishing and became instrumental in publishing critical editions of Ignacio Cervantes’ music.  

Hernandez often used Afro-Cuban elements in her compositions including the Nueves Canciones song collection and the Triptico song cycle. 

The performance program was as follows:

Nueve Canciones.................... Gisela Hernández Gonzalo 
Mi corazón lo trajo el mar 
Unica mar 
Solo por el rocío 
Huerto de marzo 
Deprisa tierra, deprisa 
Voy a medime el amor 

Blythe Cates (Texas State University), soprano 
Orit Amy Eylon (University of the Incarnate Word), mezzo-soprano 
Ara Koh (University of the Incarnate Word), piano 
Presider: André Chiang (Oklahoma State University) 

Physical Therapy Faculty Receive Grant

Headshots of Dr. Alexis Ortiz and Dr. Jason WinchesterDr. Alexis Ortiz, professor and director of residences for the School of Physical Therapy, and Dr. Jason Winchester, associate professor of Physical Therapy, recently received a $1,500 research grant from the Texas Society of Allied Health Professions, a professional organization for health professionals that promotes education, research, and clinical practice. The title of their research is “Effectiveness of Blood Flow Restriction On Balance, Knee Stability, Strength, and Aerobic Performance During Aerobic Cycling Exercise in Healthy Adults.”

Talk About it with Trey: Dr. Luke Winslow

A headshot of Dr. Luke WinslowThe School of Media and Design, along with UIW Communication Arts faculty, hosted Dr. Luke Winslow ( left), author and professor at Baylor University, for Talk About It with Trey, a new series hosted by Dr. Trey Guinn, Communication Arts program director. The series invites guest speakers to hold casual, but informative conversations with students, community leaders, academics and others. The event was held on Monday, Oct. 26. Dr. Winslow discussed his new book, American Catastrophe. 

Mission & Ministry

All Saints' Day: An Excerpt from The Joy of Discipleship by Pope Francis

The interior of a chapel

The Feast of All Saints reminds us that the goal of our existence is not death, it is paradise! The apostle John writes, “It does not yet appear what we shall be, but we know that when he appears we shall be like him, for we shall see him as he is” (1 John 3:2). The saints—who are the friends of God—assure us of this promise that does not disappoint. During their earthly existence they lived in profound communion with God. In the faces of the humblest and least of our brothers, the smallest and most despised brothers, they saw the face of God, and now they contemplate him face to face in his glorious beauty.

Read the full excerpt

All Saints' Day and All Souls Day

The steeple of the Chapel of the Incarnate Word

University Mission and Ministry invites you to attend our weekly Sunday Morning Prayer at 11 a.m. on Nov. 1. The platform will open at 10:45 a.m. for an opportunity to greet one another. This week's service is based on the scriptures of the 31st Sunday of Ordinary Time. While we cannot gather in person to celebrate the Sunday Eucharist in Our Lady’s Chapel or the Chapel of the Incarnate Word, we can gather virtually and unite our prayers of petition with our extended Incarnate Word family during this celebration of the Liturgy of the Word. The service will be held on Zoom. We hope you’ll be able to join us this Sunday!

RSVP to receive a Zoom link to Sunday Morning Prayer

In addition, University Mission and Ministry invites you to a special All Souls Day liturgy on Monday, Nov. 2 at noon via Zoom as we remember all those we love who have died and are now with God. In preparation for this liturgy, we invite you to submit photos of your loved ones to be used in a remembrance slideshow prior to the beginning of our service. To give us time to prepare, the deadline to submit a picture is Friday, Oct. 30. Please send all photos to with "All Souls Photo" in the subject line and the name of your loved one in the body of the email. 

RSVP to receive a Zoom link to the All Souls Day Service

Alumni Memorial Liturgy of the Word

Two women visit a burial site

University Mission and Ministry and the UIW Department of Alumni & Parent Relations invite you to attend our weekly Sunday Morning Prayer on Nov. 8 at 11 a.m. ( left, 2019 Alumni Memorial Mass archive photo) This week's service we will also be celebrating the close of Homecoming weekend. This has been an honored tradition of recognizing the 50th Reunion Class and remembering those who have gone before us.

While we cannot gather in person to celebrate the Sunday Eucharist in Our Lady’s Chapel or the Chapel of the Incarnate Word, we can gather virtually and unite our prayers of petition during this celebration of the Liturgy of the Word as we pray with the scriptures for the 32nd Sunday in Ordinary Time and remember those who have touched our lives over the years. There were wonderful bonds created and these memories are what make "coming home" such a special part of how our university family celebrates together - alumni, future alumni, faculty, staff, Sisters, parents, and friends of UIW.

The service will be held on Zoom. The platform will open at 10:45 a.m. for an opportunity to greet one another before prayer. For more information, please email 

Register here

Community News

UIW Behavioral Health Services Resources

A headshot of Debbie GarciaThis year has been challenging, but UIW Behavioral Health Services is available to help students take care of their mental health. We'll be sharing some tips and resources with students and community members from UIW Behavioral Health Services over the next few weeks. Today, we focus on fighting the stigma! 

Debbie Garcia, clinical counselor, reminds our Cardinals that mental health should be taken just as seriously as physical health. 

"What I would say to someone who may be hesitant to reach out for help is that our mental health is just as important as our physical health," she said. "If we are feeling physically sick, we go to someone who could help us find some potential relief and feel better. Seeking counseling services is not any different."

Learn more about UIW Behavioral Health Services

Incarnate Word Sister to be Featured in San Antonio World Heritage Dia de Los Muertos Celebration

A woman in Dia de los Muertos makeupSr. Pauline Fierro, CCVI (1874 - 1973) is being featured in the San Antonio Missions World Heritage Office Dia de los Muertos celebration. Born on the west side of San Antonio, Sr. Pauline served in both Mexico and the U.S. and became a leader in promoting education for Hispanic students. She was the principal at Espada Mission School for 27 years. She founded summer religious education programs for children who were unable to attend Catholic schools. Sr. Martha Ann Kirk, CCVI, will speak about Sr. Pauline at this special, virtual celebration on Sunday, Nov. 1. 

Learn about the event here

In the News

Listen: Filling the nursing shortage with new accelerated nursing program


Ettling Center and UIW Athletics Spread Halloween Cheer

UIW students prepare and pose with bags of candy

The Ettling Center for Civic Leadership and Sustainability in collaboration with UIW Athletics assembled and donated 979 candy bags to UIW’s Brainpower Connection schools, St. Peter Prince of the Apostles School, St. Anthony Catholic School, Blessed Sacrament Catholic School, Child Advocates San Antonio (CASA), Visitation House Ministries, Thrive Youth Center, and The Village at Incarnate Word. On Saturday, Oct. 24, UIW students gathered in the Student Engagement Center to decorate and assemble candy bags. Thank you to all who volunteered and donated candy to continue making this tradition possible!

Cardinal Corner

UIW Vocal Students Compete at NATS

Choral students rehearse outsideCongratulations are in order for UIW Music students Alexander Montalvo (BA Performance), Serena Hernandez (BA Performance), Odelia Torres (BA Performance), Alicia Aguilar (BM Education) and Samantha Lira-Mora (BM Music Therapy) who participated in the TEXOMA National Association of Teachers of Singing (NATS) 2020 Conference. These students competed for scholarship funds in their respective age group and division which is classified by years of applied study. The UIW Music Department's vocal area annually competes in the regional and chapter auditions for NATS. This year’s audition moved from in-person auditions to videotaped YouTube submissions adjudicated but faculty from four states. We congratulate our students for not letting the pandemic prevent them from competing and representing UIW. In addition to the auditions, they also participated in master classes, attended vocology workshops, and watched artist series performances.

Dr. Blythe Cates, part-time faculty in voice, and Dr. Orit Eylon, associate professor of Music served as vocal adjudicators for several divisions and participated in the conference. Over the past seven years, UIW music students have placed in many divisions and the department looks forward to keeping the tradition of these scholarship auditions for years to come.

Physical Therapy Student Awards

Headshots of Physical Therapy award recipients

A headshot of Dr. Taylor

Dr. Caroline Goulet, dean of the School of Physical Therapy (SoPT), recently announced the winners of the school's Spring 2020 Student Awards at a virtual event held this fall. The keynote speaker for the event, Dr. Randle Taylor, is the director of the All American Orthopedic and Sports Medicine Institute, and a 2015 SoPT graduate. In his keynote address, Dr. Taylor shared his personal path to success and what he has learned along the way.

The Problem-Based Learning (PBL) in Action Award recognizes students who have demonstrated excellence in one or more courses, are reflective, collaborative and best represent the process of PBL – collaborative discussions, critical thinking and active class participation, and who serve as a role model for fellow classmates. This honor was awarded to Brittany Gandin (Class of 2021) and Caleb Comer (Class of 2022).

The School of Physical Therapy Spirit Award, which recognizes students who have demonstrated living the values of the school’s mission within the school and their professional community, was awarded to David Clay and Shakir Iga.

The Leadership and Service Award, which recognizes students who demonstrate motivational leadership impacting academics, work or community environments, professional affiliations, and activities, was awarded to Raquel Woods and William DeLeon.

The Dean’s Merit Award, which recognizes a 3rd year student (Class of 2021) distinguished by a mindfulness and willingness to collaborate with others with their knowledge, abilities and values, and who achieved the highest standards of academic excellence, was awarded to Jazmine Shaw.

Congratulations to all students recognized at this event!

Alumni and Parent Relations

Celebrate Home Sweet Homecoming!

Hear from members of the Alumni Association Board and the Department of Alumni and Parent Relations about all the fun in store at next week's Homecoming festivities! 

Register for Home Sweet Homecoming 

Veteran's Day Car Parade

The U.S. flag over an image of a standing soldierJoin us in honoring our U.S. military veterans on Wednesday, Nov. 11 at 1 p.m. for a Veterans Day Car Parade through the Broadway campus. Together, we will honor our nation's veterans, their sacrifice and the sacrifices of their loved ones in a special drive through campus. All are welcome to participate in appreciation of our U.S. veterans. 

Enter your vehicle


Men's Soccer Announces Spring 2021 Schedule

The men's soccer team gather in a huddle

The University of the Incarnate Word men's soccer team announced the release of the Spring 2021 conference schedule on Tuesday. The Cardinals are scheduled to play ten Western Athletic Conference games in Head Coach Kiki Lara's first season. All game times are to be determined. 

The season begins with the Cardinals visiting San Jose State on Feb. 6, with the home opener scheduled for Feb. 13 against UNLV. 

Looking to improve from a 2-9 conference record in 2019, UIW hosts four more home games against Dixie State, Grand Canyon, Houston Baptist and Air Force. 

Additionally, the Cardinals travel to Utah Valley, California Baptist and Seattle before the regular season finale at UTRGV.

With conference adjustments due to the COVID-19 pandemic, UIW hopes to be in contention for a spot in the six-team WAC Championship Tournament set to begin on April 13 and conclude on April 17 at UNLV. 

The NCAA indicates that the regular season can start as early as Feb. 3, 2021. The Cardinals have room to add additional games prior to conference play. 

The schedule is subject to change. UIW Athletics will continue monitoring the ongoing situation involving the COVID-19 pandemic and will follow the University's Emergency Response Team, Southland Conference, NCAA, and CDC guidelines and recommendations as they develop and change. We will continue to notify our athletic community as information is updated. 

See the full schedule below: 

  • Saturday, Feb. 6, 2021 @ San Jose State 
  • Saturday, Feb.13, 2021 vs. UNLV 
  • Saturday, Feb. 20, 2021 @ Utah Valley 
  • Saturday, Feb. 27, 2021 vs. Dixie State 
  • Saturday, March 6, 2021 @ California Baptist 
  • Saturday, March 13, 2021 vs. Grand Canyon 
  • Saturday, March 20, 2021 @ Seattle 
  • Friday, March 26, 2021 vs. Houston Baptist 
  • Wednesday, March 31, 2021 vs. Air Force 
  • Friday, April 9, 2021 @ UTRGV 
  • Tuesday, April 13, 2021 NWAC Championships (at UNLV)  
  • Thursday, April 15, 2021 NWAC Championships (at UNLV) 
  • Saturday, April 17, 2021 NWAC Championship Game (at UNLV) 


COVID-19 Resources

A student in a UIW mask looks at a computer

The University of the Incarnate Word continues to monitor the local, regional and state-wide progression of COVID-19 to inform decisions about safe campus operations. Below you will find links to helpful information regarding UIW's COVID-19 warning indicators, case tracking, safety guidelines and resources for the UIW community. These sites will be updated to reflect changes or new information.

Cardinal Daily Health Check

COVID-19 Information Site

COVID-19 Case Updates

Cardinal Flight Plan 

A Message from Health Services to Students, Employees and Vendors

Since your return to campus in August, many of you have participated in COVID-19 mass testing as part of UIW’s shared responsibility. UIW’s COVID-19 testing program has been very successful. To date, 4,036 COVID-19 tests have been administered with only 47 positives on the Broadway campus. UIW's health professions schools similarly have a low number of cases. While we all would prefer the number be zero, we know the reality of the contagion is that there will in fact be positives. However, identifying COVID-19 positive cases early allows us to mitigate potential risk to others. Your commitment to safety and protecting each other is seen daily when you wear a mask, use hand sanitizer, maintain 6 feet of physical distancing and participate in COVID-19 testing. We recognize that you are living the Mission of UIW in your respectful interactions with others that promote the common good.

This month, we transitioned to random surveillance testing for students, employees and vendors who are living, working, studying or attending co-curricular activities on campus. Surveillance testing focuses on testing students, employees and vendors who are asymptomatic, meaning they are not showing symptoms of disease. This helps UIW monitor COVID-19 trends within our community and allows us to make timely decisions to prevent outbreaks from occurring.

A high level of participation in the surveillance testing program is important to protect the health of the UIW community and the University’s neighbors within the larger community. If you are selected to participate in surveillance testing, you will receive an email which includes details and a sign-up link that allows you to pick a date and time that works best for you. 

Surveillance testing on the Broadway campus will occur under the Agnese/Sosa parking garage with signage direction those being tested to a check-in table. 

Cardinals, it has been inspiring to see your care and compassion for others this year. We realize this is not the year you expected but you are taking a difficult situation and turning it into something unique and special. I am encouraged to learn about the many ways you are maintaining social connections while physically distancing. University sponsored events, residence hall art projects, outside gatherings at the bench with Red, Zoom study groups, and outdoor running groups are some of the many ways you can continue to stay connected while promoting safety.

As we transition to the holidays and the city begins a larger scale opening, keep in mind your safety commitment to yourself and others. You are doing a great job, and it is important that you remain vigilant and remember the important role you play in keeping our campus, our friends and families and our community safe. 

Dr. Ronda Gottlieb
Director of Clinical Health