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Odalys VielmaOdalys Vielma ’18

Criminal Justice
New Braunfels, TX

Meet Odalys Vielma, a class of 2018 Criminal Justice major from New Braunfels. She chose UTSA for its strong diversity, beautiful and modern Downtown Campus, and because it’s located in San Antonio—a city she feels a strong sense of belonging in.

While in high school, Odalys took an elective class in criminal justice and developed a love for all things related to social justice and law. From that time on, she decided to major in criminal justice, which also helped her in deciding which college to attend.

“I knew I had to come to UTSA because they offer a criminal justice program here, which not a lot of universities do. It seemed like a great opportunity.”

After arriving at UTSA, it didn’t take long for Odalys to find much to like. She fell in love with the central location of the Downtown Campus, where UTSA’s criminal justice program is located, along with its small and intimate class sizes. She’s found the courses in her program to be both relevant and inspirational.

“The faculty here have done great things throughout their careers and it shows. They’ll do everything they can to prepare you for life after college.”

One of Odalys’ favorite faculty members is Professor Dylan Jackson, a criminologist who teaches courses on violent crime and criminal logic theories. “He teaches some of the most interesting classes and makes everything clear and easy to understand.”

In Fall 2017, Odalys accepted an internship for the Edward Garcia law firm, a San Antonio based criminal defense lawyer association. After she graduates in Spring 2018, Odalys plans on continuing her education in either graduate or law school.

Odalys’ advice to new students interested in studying Criminal Justice at UTSA is, “Do it! Don’t be afraid of going to a different campus that is located downtown. If you’re interested in doing anything in public policy, the heart of San Antonio is the perfect location. Once I went, it was amazing and I enjoyed meeting new people there. There are so many great opportunities.”