texas state

Invasive species hunter safeguards waterway


One Texas State graduate has made fishing his day job through a city-funded contract to remove invasive sea life from the San Marcos River and Spring Lake.

Nick Menchaca, founding owner of Atlas Environmental, has earned a living since 2013 by hunting suckermouth catfish, tilapia, red-rimmed melania and giant ramshorn snails. Non-native invasive species could potentially devastate San Marcos’ local aquatic ecosystem without the work of Menchaca and his company.

Texas State offers services for sexual assault victims

The University Police Department (UPD) and other local organizations work in tandem to provide rape kits and other forms of support to survivors of sexual trauma on campus.

The kits consist of diagrams, literature and tools for documenting rapes and collecting evidence, said Whitney Bliss, sexual assault counselor at Hays-Caldwell Women’s Shelter. A certified Sexual Assault Nurse Examiner (S.A.N.E.) must perform the exams.

“It’s a standard process,” Bliss said. “All of the kits have the exact same materials in it, even with instructions on how to do that and how to label it.”

Army cadet honored with top leadership award

Being described as a humble leader is an honor reserved for very few.

Army Cadet Walter Brinker, Spanish senior, joined the Reserve Officers’ Training Corps (ROTC) in January 2012 after graduating high school in 2003. Brinker was one of 15 cadets nationally recognized with top honors in leadership March 30 with the George C. Marshall Award.

Texas State University System faces funding shortage for campus expansion

University system officials across the state have delayed campus construction projects after the 84th Texas Legislative Session did not approve revenue bonds.

House Bill 100 (HB100) passed April 9 in a 131-13 vote. HB 100 will issue over $3 billion in revenue bonds to universities across Texas.

Senate Bill 150 (SB 150) was approved April 7 by the Committee on Higher Education. The bill must pass a full Senate vote before revenue bonds can be issued.

Traditionally the legislature approves additional tuition revenue bonds every eight years, said Mike Wintemute, Texas State University System communications director. However, the approval failed to leave conference in the final hours of the 83rd Legislative Session in 2013.

New student body president, vice president inaugurated

Texas State’s new student body president and vice president were inaugurated Monday afternoon next to a statue of the university’s most famous alumus, President Lyndon Baines Johnson.

Tiffany Young, outgoing student body president and public relations junior, gave the opening speech and introduced President Denise Trauth. Trauth spoke about the importance of Student Government and then swore in the new student body president: Lauren Stotler, finance sophomore. 

Stotler swore in Tyler Burton, finance junior, as the new student body vice president.

New manhole covers promote environmental responsibility

Salamanders have been spotted all over San Marcos—not in the river, but on storm drains.

Last year, city officials hosted a competition and asked residents of all ages to develop a design for the storm drain covers around San Marcos.

Andrea Weissenbuehler, communication design graduate student, and Mabel Lopez (who goes by Mabel Sirup), studio art senior, won the competition. Weissenbuehler and Sirup created the “Sally the Salamander” logo to be put on storm drains. The first storm drains were installed March 6, with Weissenbuehler’s artwork in the center and Sirup’s border.

City, university team up for new stormwater campaign

A new campaign partnership is intended to help educate the community about stormwater runoff and how it affects the environment.

University officials, in conjunction with the City of San Marcos, are joining a new campaign called “What Goes Here Flows Here.”

The university and the city were included in a new stormwater permit called Municipal Separate Storm Sewer Systems (MS4s) in 2013, said Colleen Cook, environmental health specialist and university stormwater manager.

Electronics recycling event promotes waste disposal


Rain showers were not enough to stop items ranging from leg massagers to big-screen televisions from rolling in to the seventh Earth Day RecycleNow electronics collection day.

The RecycleNow event was an opportunity for residents to dispose of electronics without paying a processing fee or sending the material to landfills, said Lisa Arceneaux, hazardous waste management specialist and event coordinator. 

“Recycling electronics is a huge favor we can do for ourselves and for the planet,” Arceneaux said.

Arceneaux said the R3 Recycling company moved into San Marcos last year and now offers residents free electronic waste disposal year-round.

New York Times journalist, Texas State alumna discusses digital media

For Maira Garcia, former editor-in-chief of The University Star, the process of getting a job at The New York Times began with a speaker series much like the one she presented for Wednesday.

Garcia said she networked with a presenter from The New York Times when she was a graduate student and was later offered a job. She is now a senior staff editor on the home page team at the Times.

Construction plans underway for new residence hall complex

The Moore Street Housing Project is on track to be completed May 2016 in the university’s 10-year reconstruction plan.

Officials with Texas State Department of Housing and Residential Life (DHRL) began the construction of new buildings on Moore Street after San Saba Hall was torn down in spring 2014.

The Moore Street Housing Project is part of a 10-year construction plan. The plan began in 2010 with the renovation of various living facilities. The project will be complete in 2020 after the demolition of Arnold, Smith, Hornsby and Burleson Halls, said Rosanne Proite, director of Housing and Residential Life.


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