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Joshua Ysaguirre

Joshua Ysaguirre ’18

Rio Hondo, TX

Meet Joshua Ysaguirre. This Honors College student and music major is looking forward to integrating his passion for music into his teaching career.

Ysaguirre was born in San Antonio but grew up in Rio Hondo, Texas, a small town outside of Harlingen in the Rio Grande Valley. He says he always had a desire to become a teacher and was influenced by the hard work both of his parents displayed in their jobs as teachers. He wanted to model his classroom on their positive learning environments, and he knew that started with getting a top-tier education at his dad’s alma mater, UTSA.

“I was a student who was ready to succeed,” said Ysaguirre. “When I eventually become a teacher, the one thing I want to instill in my students is how to succeed.”

Ysaguirre enrolled at UTSA to pursue a science degree and take on the challenging curriculum of the UTSA Honors College. The saxophone player also became a member of the Spirit of San Antonio marching band during his first year. His true passion was music, though, so he decided to change his major.

“I had to take a moment and think, ‘When I see my future, what can’t I live without?’” he said. “I couldn’t really see my future without music, and that influenced me to switch over.”

Ysaguirre enrolled in music courses during his sophomore year while continuing his Honors College courses. He also received the Rising Roadrunner Scholarship, which is awarded by the Office of Undergraduate Admissions to UTSA students who embody the Roadrunner spirit.

As an Honors student, Ysaguirre values being able to register early for classes and having multiple counselors to discuss his academic growth. He’s participated in seminars that have taught him how to plan meticulously, and attended a training on different study methods – tools Ysaguirre says he can use in his classroom.

“While I may be one of the few music majors in the Honors College, I do not feel like an outcast,” says Ysaguirre. “Being an Honors student is so beneficial in that, I learn from top-tier faculty, I can register early and be ahead of the game, and I can apply what I learned to my teaching career.”

He says that joining the Honors College has been rewarding.

“Being a music major in the Honors College has broadened my horizons, and I appreciate how both have helped me,” said Ysaguirre. “The classes are a lot smaller and more intimate. I know the professors and students in the music department and the Honors College. We are a family.”

Now a senior, Ysaguirre plans to complete his student teaching next semester and has received a teaching grant from UTSA to support his work. The honors student is set to graduate in May 2018 then plans on obtaining his teaching certification.

He says the values he’s received from his Honors College professors, his band directors, and the memories he has gained from campus life have left an astounding impression on his life.

“If you make yourself available, there will always be something you can do,” said Ysaguirre. “Invest in yourself and people will invest in you. This is what has benefitted me most at UTSA.”

Story by Regina Unger on UTSA Today