It was a historic weekend at the University of Houston-Downtown (UHD).
UHD hosted its first Ring Ceremony, honoring the accomplishments of spring graduates, and presenting graduation rings. More than 100 students attended this event with their families to receive their rings, meet UHD President, Dr. Juan Sánchez Muñoz, and take photos next to the the latest addition to campus, the bronze Gator statue.
Immediately following the ceremony, President Muñoz headed to Johnny Goyen Park (just downstairs from the South Deck) to participate in the ribbon-cutting for the new White Oak-Buffalo Downtown Trail. The event, coordinated by the Houston Parks Board, featured a number of community leaders offering support for this new pathway. Mayor Sylvester Turner, Harris County Commissioner Rodney Ellis, City Council member Karla Cisneros, and Texas Rep. Carol Alvarado were among the dignitaries in attendance. Other partners in this initiative included the Buffalo Bayou Partnership, the City of Houston, Houston Parks and Recreation and Harris County Flood Control District. The ribbon-cutting ceremony marked the last of the six-part $30 million “Houston Regional Bike/Ped Connections to Transit” project, funded by the US Department of Transportation’s Transportation Generating Economic Recovery (TIGER) grant program.
UHD’s Pocket Prairie Ambassadors also were at the event promoting the nearby prairie (with native grasses and wildflowers) and giving away wildflower seeds.
“This is a great day,” Muñoz said during the ribbon-cutting ceremony. “We hosted our inaugural Ring Ceremony today, and now we open this trail. The students who received their rings will remember today. They’ll remember looking over the South Deck at the bayou and this new trail, and they’ll remember our new Gator statue. They will see this area as a part of their past, but it’s also a necessary part of their future. Those students and others will have better access to our campus, the bayous, the greenways, and our city.”