Mind-expanding opportunities are coming up this semester as St. Edward’s brings leaders and changemakers who are making a difference in the world to engage with our community.

Events and guest speakers this fall include best-selling author and anti-racism activist Jayson Reynolds; award-winning Texas Poet Laureate Emmy Perez; distinguished health professionals at the university’s annual Lucian Symposium on global health challenges; and internationally renowned sustainability experts at our Kozmetsky Center events. Here’s a look at what’s ahead.   


Exploring Racism

Every year, St. Edward’s chooses a Common Theme that guides programming and discussions across campus that confront questions of social justice. Incoming students discuss the theme in their Freshman Seminar and attend events related to the theme. For Fall 2021 Hilltoppers are reading Stamped: Racism, Antiracism, and You by Jason Reynolds and Ibram X. Kendi. Reynolds is speaking to the campus community on Sept. 29. See an overview of his book and his video message about being an anti-racist. 



Health Equity

While health inequity has long been a social justice issue, the Covid-19 pandemic is bringing racial health disparities to the forefront. If health equity could be achieved, all people would have nearly the same quality of life and access to healthcare and treatment. What populations are vulnerable to health disparities and what is being done to promote their wellbeing? On Sept. 24, the 2021 Lucian Symposium, sponsored by the School of Natural Sciences and open to the public, explores this question with three distinguished experts from Johns Hopkins University, Duke University and University of California, Davis.



Power of the Pen

Sept. 21 and Oct. 21, Hilltoppers will hear from two Texas literary talents hosted by the Marcia Kinsey Visiting Writers Series in the School of Arts and Humanities. Emmy Perez, Texas Poet Laureate 2020, is the author of two poetry collections — With the River on Our Face and Solstice. Her poetry and teaching address personal, political and global forces affecting lives at the U.S.–Mexico border. Raul Garza is a Latinx playwright whose stories are acclaimed for authenticity and sense of place. Gaza’s play MyHEB garnered FronteraFest Best of Fest accolades and his short stories have been published widely.



Sustainability Awareness

What’s the global outlook for a sustainable future? Two upcoming Kozmetsky Center webinars share critical perspectives with the St. Edward’s community. On Sept. 28, Phoebe Koundouri, an internationally renowned leader on sustainability with Athens University of Economics and Business, will discuss the urgency of advancing global sustainable development. On Oct. 5, a leading researcher on designs for reducing industrial carbon emissions, Dhbia Al-Mohannadi of Texas A&M University, will speak on the potential of carbon capture technology. See details and all Kozmetsky Center events for Fall 2021. 



Conscious Business

Students will get an inside look at what it takes to launch, lead and manage a socially responsible business during two virtual Fireside Chats hosted by The Bill Munday School of Business. Interim Dean Louise Single will talk with C-level executives who are making a positive impact with their Austin-based enterprises. On Sept. 16, Single meets with Sarah Zubiate ’06, founder and CEO, of Zubi’s, maker of sustainable, plant-based organic salsa and dips. On schedule for Nov. 11 is a conversation with Michelle Davey ’11, co-founder and CEO of Wheel, a fast-rising player in the virtual healthcare industry.



Science Without Borders

Ciencia sin Fronteras (Science without Borders) will host a conversation on Sept. 16 with St. Edward’s University President Montserrat Fuentes. Led by professors Lissette Curry, Andrea Holgado and Santiago Toledo Carrion in the School of Natural Sciences, the program is dedicated to providing a Spanish-speaking, culturally responsive environment that encourages and supports students studying the sciences in fulfilling their goals. Dr. Fuentes will speak about her journey from undergraduate education to becoming a university president, and her strategies for overcoming challenges along the way.



Ventures for Good

Our 3 Day Startup event on Sept. 24–26 gives all Hilltoppers the opportunity to turn their business ideas into a new enterprise and learn what it takes to found a company. That includes ventures that improve social and environmental aspects of society. At prior 3 Day Startups on the hilltop, students have pitched ideas for sustainable farming with hydroelectricity, environmental ways to collect medical waste, and an app that provides easy access to low-cost therapy, to name just a few. During the event, successful Austin entrepreneurs mentor and evaluate students, helping them gain skills that apply to any career field.