An update from President Denise M. Trauth of Texas State University

Summer I
Dear Friends,

Sometimes, the connections we make help chart our path. This summer, we bolstered relationships with academic and cultural arts institutions and with corporations and organizations in Spain and Mexico that we believe will make all of our entities stronger.

In early July, I traveled to Spain to sign an agreement with the Universidad de Castilla–La Mancha (UCLM) to support research and academic collaborations. This agreement will facilitate student and faculty exchanges and student internships. It also paves the way for collaborative research projects, notably with the Department of Finance and Economics in the McCoy College of Business Administration, the College of Fine Arts and Communication’s School of Art and Design, and the Departments of History and Modern Languages in the College of Liberal Arts. UCLM, like our university, is committed to becoming a magnet for talent and knowledge-related capital from all over the world.

In June, I had the distinct pleasure of leading a delegation to Mexico City to meet with Mexican government and academic officials, U.S. Embassy representatives, and leaders of industry and major cultural institutions. Our goal was to reaffirm existing partnerships in Mexico and establish new strategic relationships — and the trip was every bit as productive as intended. By strengthening relationships with our counterparts in Mexico, we are positioned to expand research programs, boost academic and industrial collaborations with Mexican institutions and corporations, enhance academic programming, and engage in student and faculty exchanges. Elevating these partnerships will expand Texas State’s research capabilities in several areas such as water and the environment, food safety and nutrition, public safety, and cybersecurity.

President Trauth and Texas State leaders joined Mexico City Bobcats to celebrate the new alumni chapter.

In addition, we are energized by the potential for collaboration in arts and culture with our friends in Mexico. Texas State’s Wittliff Collections have one of the largest archives of modern and contemporary photography from Mexico, and we believe there are extraordinary opportunities for institutions and organizations on both sides of the border to share their artistic resources.

We also used the occasion to establish the first international chapter of the Texas State Alumni Association. We have identified more than 90 Texas State alumni living in and around Mexico City, and almost half attended an alumni reception. This new chapter will certainly expand our alumni connections internationally.

We see these tremendous opportunities in Mexico and Spain as part of our escalating mission to enrich the educational experience for students and faculty at Texas State.

This summer, the Houston-based Albert and Margaret Alkek Foundation pledged a $1 million gift to Texas State’s Albert B. Alkek Library, which will support a $15 million upgrade that will transform the facility into an innovative resource center for students and faculty. This major renovation will add tools, collaborative learning spaces, and other innovative resources that give our students a powerful competitive edge when they enter the workforce. The library will be outfitted with the latest technologies and will allow students to experiment in areas such as virtual reality, geographical information systems, data visualization, game development, digital media communications, 3-D modeling, and product design. These capabilities allow students to leverage their knowledge and creativity to the highest levels and develop interactive, collaborative skills that will help them in their 21st-century careers.

The university has already made space for these upgrades by constructing an Archives and Research Center (ARC) at the Science, Technology, and Advanced Research (STAR) Park just a few miles from campus. Beginning this summer, many of our infrequently used library resources will be housed at the ARC (but are still available to the university community).

Students and faculty converge on Albert B. Alkek Library to collaborate, conduct research, access educational resources, and be inspired. These infrastructure changes will undoubtedly have a major impact on learning and teaching experiences for our students and faculty.
Dr. Ty Schepis has been awarded an NIH Research Project Grant.

In yet another milestone moment in Texas State’s mission to become a nationally renowned research institution, Dr. Ty Schepis, an associate professor in the Department of Psychology, has been awarded a $573,000 Research Project Grant from the National Institute on Drug Abuse, an institute of the National Institutes of Health (NIH). Dr. Schepis’ three-year study will analyze prescription misuse among adolescents and young adults, and specifically examine the influence of school status on younger prescription misusers to identify the psychosocial and prescription drug misuse traits.

As one of the foremost research centers in the world, the NIH funds high-caliber scientific proposals that are relevant to public health needs. This recent award speaks to the outstanding projects with which our faculty are engaged. With the incidence of prescription drug abuse on the rise in recent years, Dr. Schepis’ work has the potential to contribute to the important and ongoing discussion of how our nation’s health system addresses this public health issue now and in the decades to come.

We look forward to sharing updates with you as these and other exciting initiatives progress.


Denise M. Trauth
Office of University Advancement
601 University ​Dr. • San Marcos, ​TX ​78666
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