13:38 PM

Holiday Spirit Alive at UHD in 2020

This year, the University of Houston-Downtown (UHD) is celebrating the holidays while safely distanced, but many Gators are still finding ways to engage in goodwill efforts throughout the city.

A number of initiatives are currently ongoing, including the Staff Council Holiday Giving Campaign, conducted in collaboration with the University of Houston-Downtown Police Department (UHDPD). Both organizations are collecting donations through Dec. 20 to provide holiday meals for families in need. Details on how to support this campaign can be found in this recent UHD News article.

UHDPD also continued its annual support of local children with two toy drop-offs at Ketelsen Elementary School. The most recent delivery to these students provided more than 70 items to students. Branden Kuzmick, Program Coordinator in the University College and Director of the GTF Scholars Program and students from UHD’s Greater Texas Scholars Program assisted in wrapping items.

“The GTF Scholars have participated in supporting UHD’s Police Department’s toy drive each of the three years we have had this program,” said Dr. Scott Marzilli, Dean of UHD’s University College. “This demonstrates that even during tough times, our humanity and our willingness to support others will get us through to the other side. I am so proud of Branden Kuzmick, Director of the GTF Scholars Program for always thinking about ways to support both our students and our community. We are lucky to have this great program with its amazing students here at UHD.”

The Office of University Advancement & University Relations (UAUR) also conducted an inter-office toy drive. This year, UAUR supported the Many Friends Toy Drive led by FOX26 host Isiah Carey with support from UHD alumnus and King’s Court Restaurant owner Jatin Patel.

Other toy drives this season included initiatives from Sports & Fitness (benefitting BEAR) and Omega Delta Phi fraternity (providing toys for kids in need that will be delivered on Dec. 25). Also, Gamma Alpha Omega sorority recently concluded its drive benefiting Toys for Tots.

"The spirit of the season is alive and well at the University of Houston-Downtown,” said UHD Interim President Antonio D. TIllis, Ph.D. “The many toy drives and charitable initiatives being undertaken by our faculty, staff and students speaks volumes about our Gators' commitment to our community. I applaud their efforts for taking the time to brighten the holiday season for many Houstonians.”


About the University of Houston-Downtown

The University of Houston-Downtown (UHD) – the second-largest university in Houston – has served the educational needs of the nation’s fourth-largest city since 1974.

As one of four distinct public universities in the University of Houston System, UHD is a comprehensive four-year university led by President Loren J. Blanchard. Annually, UHD educates more than 15,000 students; boasts more than 61,000 alumni and offers 45 bachelor’s, nine master’s degree programs and 16 fully online programs within five colleges (Marilyn Davies College of Business; Humanities & Social Sciences; Public Service; Sciences & Technology; and University College).

For the fourth consecutive year, U.S. News & World Report ranks UHD among universities across the nation for Best Online Criminal Justice Programs (No. 27 and No. 15 for Veterans) and Best Online Bachelor’s Programs.

UHD has the most affordable tuition among four-year universities in Houston and one of the lowest in Texas. U.S. News ranked the University among Top Performers on Social Mobility and awarded UHD a No. 1 ranking as the most diverse institution of higher education in the southern region of the U.S. The University is noted nationally as a Hispanic-Serving Institution, Minority-Serving Institution and Military Friendly School. For more on the University of Houston-Downtown, visit www.uhd.edu.