When it was time for Bianca Diaz to choose which university to attend after graduation, she had a hard time picking the right fit for her. Upon touring UTSA, interim dean of the Honors College, Jill Fleuriet, quickly made Diaz feel like she was back at home in the valley. Both from Harlingen, Fleuriet’s hospitality and the beauty of the main campus incapsulated the heart of Diaz and solidified her choice to attend the university.
During your time at UTSA, what organizations have you been involved with?
I worked as a peer coach in the Honors College as I have always wanted to help other students navigate their college journey. Through being a peer coach, I have met hardworking students from various majors who needed help with a course, setting up their Honors experiences, or advice to help de-stress. Every student I met made an impact on me and to hear their stories and passions is proof that UTSA has some of the best students in the nation. In the beginning of 2022, I decided to join Roadrunner Productions, UTSA’s student program board with “a mission to foster and build traditions and community through campus-wide programs, activities, and special events” such as BestFest and Howdy Rowdy Bash. Through this organization, I worked as marketing coordinator creating graphics and working to promote events to the UTSA and San Antonio community. I even had the opportunity to work with the Institute of Texan Cultures to create an exhibit explaining the history of Dia en la Sombrilla (previously Fiesta UTSA). This experience has been a major part of my time at UTSA. The feeling of seeing UTSA students and their families’ happy faces at an event that we planned from beginning to end is indescribable. I have made lifelong friendships there and so many incredible memories.
During my time at UTSA, I was also a part of the President’s Student Advisory Council, Business Honors Student Advisory Board and Phi Sigma Pi National Honor Fraternity.
Why did you choose to major in marketing at the Carlos Alvarez College of Business?
In high school, I had my first step into marketing working as editor-in-chief for yearbook. I had always loved the strategy component of creating a marketing plan and seeing it come to fruition. The feeling of creating something that not only produced revenue, but made other people intrigued to take action was something I wanted to continue for the rest of my life. Marketing, especially in the modern world that we live in, allows for messages to reach people of all backgrounds through technology and innovative tactics. It is a field of business that is incredibly important to the success of a company. Having the ability to be creative while also leading a company to success is something I am passionate about. I hope to utilize the skills I learn throughout my career in marketing to eventually teach those skills to others interested in marketing whether through a non-profit organization or as a professor.
Do you have any professional work experience or internships you have taken part in?
I interned with H-E-B in the summer of 2022 in the marketing department. I was lucky to have such an impactful mentor, Becca Molloy. I helped create content calendars for H-E-B Wellness and develop Search Engine Optimization strategies. Through this internship, I gained skills in communication, technology and confidence in my field. It is easy to back down when you’‘re in a room with so many accomplished individuals, but this internship along with the H-E-B Partners I met throughout my time helped me build confidence in who I am and the path I am walking on.
Upon graduation, I am thrilled to announce that I will be back working with H-E-B Corporate as a marketing associate.
What have been some of your proudest achievements at UTSA?
In the summer of 2020, I worked on a podcast through the Honors College for Prospera Public Housing. In this course, I partnered with a public housing resident to share their story and work to break the stigma of public housing. She opened up to me about the struggles she was facing through COVID-19 from being furloughed to seeing her children miss a piece of their childhood due to COVID-19 restrictions. Despite her struggles, she still spoke with brightness and hope. We were able to publish our podcast on the Prospera website for other future residents to hear and understand that there is never a time to be ashamed to ask for help. I am so honored to have had the opportunity to share her story and if the work we did even changes one person’s perspective on public housing, that is a major accomplishment.
In spring 2022, I was selected as a recipient of the Who’s Who Award at UTSA as a student who “demonstrated outstanding accomplishments in the areas of scholarship, leadership, participation in extracurricular and academic activities, and service to the university and the local community.” To receive an award from the university that I love meant the world to me. It showed me that the work that I have been doing as a freshman to now was not only recognized but appreciated.
Since being a senior in high school to now, I have worked every year to gain various scholarships such as the LaGrant Foundation Scholarship (a nonprofit organization), Valero Alamo Bowl Scholarship, H-E-B Scholarship, and more. Through these tireless nights of editing my resume and writing word-count-specific essays, I can proudly say that I am graduating debt-free. This was a major goal for me because I never wanted to ask my parents to pay for any part of my schooling as they have done so much for me already. This accomplishment wasn’t only for me, but for them as well.
What is your favorite thing about being a Roadrunner? What will you miss?
UTSA has given me the opportunity to excel in marketing, create connections and make lifelong friendships. Everyone on this campus is diverse from their backgrounds to their interests to their stories. We all have different reasons why we make the choices we make while being a Roadrunner, but we all share one common goal: receive our diploma. The academic process can be difficult, but the memories make it all worth it. Spending so much time in the Roadrunner Productions office made these fellow students my second family. I will miss my friends, but I know they are each going off to do amazing things in their careers and lives. I will miss sitting in the front row of the Student Section as a part of Rowdy Crew and the late-night study sessions where (if you’re a student you know) more laughing may get done than studying! Just as San Antonio became my home away from home, UTSA plays a major role in everything I do from here on out as a new home to unforgettable memories.
Do you have any advice for current business students or incoming freshmen?
Some advice I can give to other students working their way to their diploma is to always have confidence in what you are doing and passion for what you are doing. Find something that you love and find people who will lift you up to reach your goals. It can be nerve-wracking to walk into a networking event, but if you are confident in who you are and what you bring to the table, your bounds are limitless.
Never be afraid to ask for help. College isn’t something you can do alone whether it’‘s family, friends, advisors or a professor that you love. If you need help in any way, there is someone willing to guide you from how to pass your calculus class to how to pull yourself back up after a hard week. You don’t have to go through college alone.