September 2013                                                                                                                                                Vol. V, Issue

If you have news, events, or accomplishments to include in Illuminations, please send information to

Vance Receives Outstanding Teaching Award
David Vance, Assistant Professor in the Department of English, has been selected to receive the prestigious Regents' Outstanding Teaching Award through UT System.

Only a select number of faculty from the entire UT System of schools were selected for this award. Recipients are selected from a rigorous campus-level review, then the University President forwards the names of the most qualified candidates for consideration. Finally, an external review committee of highly experienced administrators, faculty members, and students evaluate and make final selections.


We congratulate Dr. Vance on this honor!  

News and Notables
Christopher Ellison, Sociology, was elected as the 2014 president of the Association for the Sociology of Religion (ASR).  The organization celebrated its 75th anniversary Aug. 10-12 at its annual conference in New York City. ASR is an international scholarly association that seeks to advance theory and research in the sociology of religion. The Association encourages and communicates research that ranges widely across the multiple themes and approaches in the study of religion, and is a focal point for comparative, historical and theoretical contributions to the field.



In May, the UTSA Trombone Choir, directed by Steve Parker, was recognized as a finalist for the 2013 Austin Critics' Table Award for Best Chamber Performance.  In June, Steve performed in-residence at the University of Buffalo, working closely with Pulitzer Prize and MacArthur winners Charles Wuorinen, Augusta Reed Thomas, and Brian Ferneyhough.  In July, he produced the regional premiere of John Luther Adams' monumental work Inuksuit at the acclaimed Crystal Bridges Museum.  In August, he was in residence at the Asian Arts Initiative building an installation and producing sound design for the Pearl Street alleyway project in North Chinatown.  He also appeared as a featured soloist at The Stone in NYC, curated by John Zorn, MacArthur Genius Award recipient.   


Malgorzata Oleszkiewicz-Peralba, Modern Languages and Literatures, was honored at a press conference in Europe organized for the launching of the exhibit and its catalogue, titled Les gens du Chemin. Pegegrinación a Saintes Maries de la Mer (The Travelers: Pilgrimage to Les Saintes Maries de la Mer). Dr. Oleszkiewicz-Peralba conducted fieldwork at this pilgrimage site in the region of Camargue, France, and collaborated with the photographer Olga Seoane Paulus, and the Museum of Pilgrimages in Santiago de Compostela, Spain, in the organization of the photo exhibit. She wrote the text of the exhibit catalogue, "Sara-La-Kâli y las vírgenes negras," which was published in three languages-Spanish, French, and Galician. While in Spain, she also conducted fieldwork in Gerona and Barcelona, for her latest book manuscript. In Poland, she conducted research at the Warsaw Ethnographic Museum, and is collaborating with the Museum as an expert in their project to acquire and exhibit ritual garments from Afro-Brazilian religions, as part of their permanent collection. As a specialist on Santa Muerte, she was asked to write an article on this new unofficial Mexican saint, for their scholarly journal, Etnografia nowa.


Currently, Dr. Oleszkiewicz-Peralba is being interviewed for an article in San Antonio, a radio program out of California, and a film out of Austin about her international career and scholarly work, featuring topics such as the Black Madonnas, unofficial saints, and fierce female divinities.


Gabriel Acevedo, Sociology, appeared on Texas Public Radio this July and discussed the decline of American religiosity alongside Byron Johnson of Baylor.


Please click the link blow to listen to the radio segment.


Gabriel Acevedo discusses the decline of
American religiosity on TPR




Student Spotlight
Photo By Kin Man Hui / San Antonio Express-News
Photo By Kin Man Hui / San Antonio Express-News
Abbigail Tamez is a graduate Psychology student who was recently featured in an Express-News article for her artwork that was created as part of an art therapy program in San Antonio. Pictured above is Abbigail (left) and Ecumenical Center for Religion and Health CEO Mary Beth Fisk with a sample of artwork on display in the exhibit "Art Heals Hearts" at the Ecumenical Center for Religion and Health.

You can view the entire article HERE


Photo: ADA Artists Management


The Dallas Opera honors Hispanic Heritage Month with a recital by UTSA Music alum ('02) and tenor David Portillo. Portillo is an outstanding young artist who is making a name for himself in the light lyric tenor roles.


To read the Star on the Rise article please click HERE.

 Publications & Presentations

Associate Dean, Augustine Osman and Collaborators, published two papers in peer-review journals:


Bryan, C. J., Elder, W. B., McNaughton-Cassill, Osman, A., Hernandez, A. M. & Allison, S. (2013). Meaning in life, emotional distress, suicidal ideation, and life functioning in an active duty military sample. The Journal of Positive Psychology, 8(5), 444-452. doi: 10.1080/17439760.2013.823557


Bryan, C. J., McNaughton-Cassill, M., Osman, A., & Hernandez, A. M. (2013). The associations of physical and sexual assault with suicide risk in nonclinical military and undergraduate samples. Suicide and Life Threatening Behavior, 43(2), 223-234.  doi: 10.1111/sltb.12011



Rhonda Gonzales, History, along with co-authors Drs. Christine Saidi (Kutztown University) and C. Cymone Fourshey (Susquehanna University) have accepted a book contract with Oxford University Press to our forthcoming Bantu Africa, 4000 BCE to 1800 CE.


Dr. Gonzales also had an article, titled "No Friends in the Holy Office: Black and Mulatta Women Healing Communities and Answering to the Inquisition in Seventeenth Century Mexico" published (August 2013) in the Journal of Pan African Studies.



Reed Hunt, Psychology, delivered an invited colloquium to the Department of Psychology of Heinrich Heine University in Dusseldorf, Germany on June 17. The title of the talk was "Is monitoring sufficient to protect against false memory?"

The Summer 2013 issue of the Marquette University Law Review (96/4) published an article by Dr. James D. Calder in Political Science titled "Between Brain and State: Herbert C. Hoover, George W. Wickersham, and the Commission that Grounded Social Scientific Investigations of American Crime and Justice, 1929-1931 and Beyond."  A collection of papers delivered last October at the Marquette Law School were extended to articles in honor of one of the most important presidential commissions of the twentieth century.  Dr. Calder's article was joined in the issue by distinguished scholars including Drs. Franklin Zimring (U Cal. Berkeley Law School),Michal Belknap (Cal. Western Law School), Beverly Gage (Yale History Dept), Rachel Harmon (U Virginia Law School), Athan Theoharis (Emeritus, Marquette History Dept.), Samuel Walker (Emeritus, U Nebraska Criminal Justice), and Ronald Wright (Wake Forest Law School).
COLFA October Events


Thurs., Oct. 3-20 
* Open Reception on Oct. 3 @ 6pm


Exhibition: Monumentalwith artistsMichael Villareal, Megan Spacek, Lisa Samson, Krista Quiroga, Alyssa Moody, Daniel Gray, Kathryn Garner, and Julio Barrientos

UTSA Satellite Space  (located inside Say Si) 1518 S Alamo St.,78204




Sun., Oct. 6 @7:30pm        

UTSA University Band

Recital Hall (ARTS Bldg., Main Campus)




Mon., Oct. 7 @7:30pm

Accompanists' Recital

Recital Hall (ARTS Bldg., Main Campus)




Tues., Oct. 8 @7:30pm      

UTSA Orchestra

Recital Hall (ARTS Bldg., Main Campus)




Fri., Oct. 11 @7:30pm


Creative Writing Reading Series: Ben Fountain

Business Building
University Room 2.06.04




Fri., Oct. 11 @7:30pm


UTSA Lyric Theatre: "Das Barbecü" - $10/$15   Group rate: $8 for 10+

Buena Vista Theatre
(Downtown Campus)




Fri., Oct. 11 @1pm


Lecture: Geo-Ethnography as a Method in Cultural Urban Geography Research by Nazgol Bagheri.

For further details:

Political Science and Geography Conference Room (MS 4.02.64)




Sun., Oct. 13 @3pm

UTSA Lyric Theatre: "Das Barbecü" - $10/$15   Group rate: $8 for 10+

Buena Vista Theatre
(Downtown Campus)





Wed., Oct. 16 through Fri., Nov. 22 
* Open Reception on Oct. 16 @ 6pm


Art Exhibition: The XVI Biennial Faculty Art Exhibition

Art Gallery (ARTS Bldg., Main Campus)




Wed., Oct. 16 @7:30pm                                   

UTSA Women's Choir and UTSA Men's Chorus

Recital Hall (ARTS Bldg., Main Campus)




Fri., Oct. 18 @7:30pm


UTSA Lyric Theatre: "Das Barbecü" - $10/$15   Group rate: $8 for 10+

Buena Vista Theatre
(Downtown Campus)




Sat., Oct. 19 @7:30pm

UTSA Chamber Singers Concert

Recital Hall (ARTS Bldg., Main Campus)




Sun., Oct. 20 @3pm


UTSA Lyric Theatre: "Das Barbecü" - $10/$15   Group rate: $8 for 10+

Buena Vista Theatre
(Downtown Campus)




Tues., Oct. 22 @7:30pm

UTSA Symphonic Band Concert

Recital Hall (ARTS Bldg., Main Campus)




Thurs., Oct. 24 @7:30pm

UTSA Wind Ensemble Concert

Recital Hall (ARTS Bldg., Main Campus)




Fri., Oct. 25 @noon

Lecture: Affective and Behavioral Reactions to Elite-based Incivility by Bryan Gervais. For further details:

Political Science and Geography Conference Room (MS 4.02.64)




Sun., Oct. 27 @ 3pm

UTSA Concert Choir

First Presbyterian Church
404 N Alamo St  San Antonio, 78205)

In This Issue
Outstanding Teacher Award
News and Notables
Publications & Presentations
Quick Links