By Kathya Anguiano
The Alamo University Center, on Pat Booker Road east of Interstate 35 and Loop 1604, is four universities in one.
The center offers courses to complete 22 bachelor’s and master’s programs in arts and sciences. The Alamo University Center offers junior, senior and graduate-level classes through partnerships with four universities.
“Students who enroll with one of our partner universities are able to complete a bachelor’s or master’s degree or teaching certificate at the Alamo Colleges-University Center without traveling to the university campuses,” said Rachell Martinez, administrative assistant for the district’s economic and workforce development division. “It’s a start-here, finish-here kind of thing.”
University Center, opened in fall 2010, partners with Texas State University, University of the Incarnate Word, Wayland Baptist University and Texas A&M University-San Antonio.
Martinez said because San Antonio is so big, the center houses universities’ program so students entrenched in work and family life have local options.“Since it is for students or adults who came back to get their B.A. or M.A., I guess our motto would be ‘finish what you started.’”
Among programs in the highest demand industries offered on site are Christian ministry, business administration, professional counselor, education, human services, management, nursing, religion and criminology.
The application process is the same as applying to the universities.
Students must meet university prerequisites and speak to an adviser of the college at the center or on the campus.
“I’ve been working with Texas A&M-San Antonio here at the center for a year to outreach and recruit students who have questions about TAMU-SA, and I believe it’s a fabulous center,” said student affairs adviser Reynaldo Valdez. “It’s nice to be there from the beginning and watch the process grow.”
Some universities have reduced tuition rates for returning adult programs. Financial aid requirements apply.
Abigail Burkett, administrative assistant for Wayland Baptist’s School of Nursing, said, “We currently have 350 online and traditional students enrolled in our nursing program. They get to work in our simulation lab and our skills lab here at the center, which helps students get clinicals once they graduate.”
Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board estimates multi-institution teaching centers around the state, such as University Center, serve about 15,500 undergraduate students and 5,900 graduate students under a formal agreement between two or more public institutions of higher education.
For more information, call Martinez at 210-486-5030.