UHV student helps recruit freshmen, sophomores

Billy Lagal

University of Houston-Victoria employee and graduate student Billy Lagal has a challenge ahead of him.

As the senior coordinator at UHV’s Letting Education Achieve Dreams, or LEAD, office, he is helping recruit the university’s first freshmen and sophomores for the fall of 2010. The university’s goal is to recruit 200 underclassmen, but Lagal isn’t worried.

“There is no doubt in my mind with the resources and team support we have within the university that we’ll blow that goal out of the water,” he said.

Lagal began working with LEAD in the spring of 2005 as an undergraduate student majoring in communication. When he graduated in December of 2006, he found a permanent position at LEAD as the community college program coordinator. He now assists transfer students and recruits new students.

“When the position became available, I was a recent UHV graduate looking for a niche that was not only promising, but fulfilling,” Lagal said. “I saw myself as a good fit because I was already very familiar with UHV. I was a student ambassador and already involved with LEAD, so I had the experience necessary to fulfill this role.”

He also decided to further his education. UHV employees are eligible for staff scholarships, and Lagal is enrolled in the Master of Arts in Interdisciplinary Studies program with concentrations in communication and psychology.

“I figured given the opportunity the university has for its employees to further their education, it would be almost foolish not to take advantage of it,” he said.

In July, Lagal was named the UHV Employee of the Month. His nomination by his coworkers in LEAD was based partly on his work on the first Achieve Your Dreams scholarship softball fundraiser during the summer.

“A lot of effort was put into that event by the whole LEAD department, so I was humbled and grateful when I found out I was selected Employee of the Month,” Lagal said.

The fundraiser earned about $2,500, which will be used for scholarship to help nontraditional students attend classes at UHV.

The UHV Outstanding Student is an online feature highlighting the exceptional students who attend the University of Houston-Victoria. To nominate a student, contact UHV Communications Manager Paula Cobler  or call 361-570-4350.

The University of Houston-Victoria, located in the heart of the Coastal Bend region since 1973 in Victoria, Texas, offers courses leading to more than 80 academic programs in the schools of Arts & Sciences; Business Administration; and Education, Health Professions & Human Development. UHV provides face-to-face classes at its Victoria campus, as well as an instructional site in Katy, Texas, and online classes that students can take from anywhere. UHV supports the American Association of State Colleges and Universities Opportunities for All initiative to increase awareness about state colleges and universities and the important role they have in providing a high-quality and accessible education to an increasingly diverse student population, as well as contributing to regional and state economic development.