Schreiner University to host Texas Star Great Debate, starting in 2018
When the National Hispanic Institute’s Texas Star Great Debate first started—as the Lone Star Great Debate—it was envisioned as a tournament for Texas students who weren’t in one of the major metro areas represented by a Texas Great Debate team. It has, of course, grown over the years to attract students from small towns and big cities—and beyond Texas—who want a six-day Great Debate experience. With the Texas Star Great Debate’s move to Schreiner University in Kerrville this summer, NHI has a host institution accustomed to attracting students from both big cities and small towns.
Larry Cantu, Schreiner University’s Vice President for Enrollment Services, notes that his school has been involved with NHI for a few years, initially through NHI College Fair participation. “I understood the success they had in drawing students who will be very successful,” he noted. Upon meeting NHI founder and president Ernesto Nieto, Cantu learned more about NHI, saw similarities between his Hispanic-serving institution and the organization, including an emphasis on having students who enter college graduate within a specific time frame, and the asset-based view of students and the communities from which they hail.
With its hosting of the Texas Star Great Debate, Schreiner is moving into a more pronounced relationship with NHI, and Cantu feels the school’s philosophical mindset make it well-suited to the Great Debate program.
“The power of small is very important here,” said Cantu. “Students get attracted to the smaller class size here, and beyond that, they look at our academics and the feel of the university. The power of small is really the embodiment of having that personalized attention, knowing the students, giving them the support system that they really need to be more successful. That takes place from enrollment, to the ability to get engaged and involved in so many different activities on campus.” Like so many alumni say about the Great Debate, Schreiner creates an atmosphere in which shy students can become involved and flourish within its setting.
He notes that students from small towns throughout the Texas Hill Country, as well as from San Antonio, Houston, and the Rio Grande Valley, gravitate to Schreiner.
This year’s six-day program will be from June 26 through July 1. For more information on NHI, including specific details on the Great Debate program, or this year’s full slate of program dates, visit the NHI website.