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Vanessa TiltonVanessa Tilton ‘21

Kinesiology & Nutrition and Dietetics
Del Rio, TX

“As a student veteran, I’ve carried the work ethic and discipline developed during my time in the Army into my studies. It’s proven to be extremely valuable and has helped set me apart.”

Vanessa Tilton hails from Fort Wainwright, Alaska, where she served for four years in the U.S. Army. San Antonio was the perfect place for Vanessa to further her education and be within driving distance of her family in Del Rio.

UTSA offers the Coordinated Program in Dietetics (CPD), a joint degree program that puts students on the pathway to becoming a registered dietitian. The program enables students to earn both a bachelor’s and master’s degree, as well as fulfill an internship experience—all within three years. After learning about CPD, Vanessa knew it was right for her.

“CPD sets you up for success. I love how close I am to the rest of my cohort. I also enjoy the challenges this program brings, because I work great under pressure. Thanks, Army!”

Vanessa chose to major in nutrition and dietetics, because she has several family members who have had or are currently suffering from chronic diseases like diabetes and cardiovascular disease. “For me, it’s more than a passion. It’s personal. I want to be able to help and make a difference.”

Last year, Vanessa joined the Dietetic and Nutrition Student Association (DANSA) and has volunteered at on-campus health fairs. She also accepted an invitation to the President’s Student Advisory Council (PSAC), a prestigious group of undergraduate thought leaders providing insight into the UTSA student experience.

Vanessa has also found the Office of Veteran and Military Affairs to be a supportive and welcoming place on campus, where she and other military-affiliated students can go for assistance.

“UTSA is unique, because of its amazing diversity, its continuously-evolving culture, and its mission to provide an excellent education to all of its students,” said Vanessa. “It has been a very inclusive and welcoming experience.”

To Vanessa, being a Roadrunner means being part of something bigger than herself, a feeling she first experienced when she joined the Army.

“I’m honored to be a veteran and to have the privilege of representing those who serve today.”

Check out Vanessa’s student spotlight video below!