By Sergio Medina
District 2 incumbent Jose Macias, 50, said it is important for him to invest in the improvement of educational pathways to raise the engagement of the student population of this city.
His involvement with the Alamo Colleges’ board of trustees was during the time Alamo Promise was being devised. The program covers district tuition expenses for graduating seniors from select Bexar County high schools.
He said he wants to continue his involvement as District 2 trustee to ensure the board lives up to the promise of raising college engagement, which he said is currently around 47 percent, to about 70 percent.
“So providing resources for student success is an absolute priority.”
Free education is only part of the equation, he said. To be able to support the student through the academic journey, assistance needs to be provided throughout the way.
Student success translates to career planning, advocacy and retainment efforts.
Macias said this should also extend to the community, poverty being a problem in District 2, which covers most of the East Side.
To help alleviate this, the implementation and expansion of education training centers, which offer GED classes, computer courses and workforce training to the community is important.
“So that we can help individuals in our efforts to build our community up,” he said.
This comes with a watchful eye on spending, however.
“Tax dollar efficiency is an absolute must,” Macias said.
Programs should build toward what is required — a quantifiable result. If the program works, then one will always find a way to sustain it financially, he said.
“One of the strongest elements to describe Alamo Colleges is that we have the ability to collaborate, partner and build relationships with other entities to ensure that we’re delivering the kind of programing that will lift our entire community.”
Alamo Promise, for example, was supported in part via funding from the city, county and private companies like Toyota.
Macias attended his first board meeting when he was a student of this college.
“The first board meeting I ever attended was in October of 1992,” he said. “And we were there protesting our dissatisfaction with administration.”
He said he remembers vividly being in awe of how they functioned.
“And I told myself, ‘one day, I’d like to come back and help. I’d like to help this district be stronger.’”
Macias said that while attending this college, he struggled for many years with getting passing grades.
Eventually, he came back to obtain his associate degree in liberal arts in 2005, while at the same time obtaining a bachelor’s in business management from Our Lady of the Lake University. He graduated from John Jay High School in 1988.
His work experience includes 10 years as a member of the board of Judson Independent School District prior to his appointment as District 2 trustee, which began in 2019.
Early voting ends Oct. 30. The election is Nov. 3.
Northwest Vista College, Palo Alto College and this college are early voting locations.
More information is available at www.bexar.org/1568/Elections-Department.