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SWT’s Dean Chahin honored with LULAC award

Date of release: 05/29/03

SAN MARCOS — The League of United Latin American Citizens has honored Jaime Chahin, dean of the College of Applied Arts at Southwest Texas State University, with the prestigious President’s Circle of Excellence Award.

The award, established by the Executive Office of the President of LULAC, recognizes individuals whose contributions have helped advance the status of Latinos through education, health, civil rights activism, volunteerism, philanthropy, the arts and corporate responsibility.

“I’m one of those people who loves what they do, and I wouldn’t want to do anything else,” said Chahin. “When somebody comes out of the blue to honor you, you really appreciate it. You don’t do it to be honored. I am humbled for being honored as a public servant that works with students to promote teaching and learning which are my passion.

“ Education is the venue, and that’s my mission. It’s been my professional mission to help people help themselves. I do it at multiple levels, with students in classrooms, grants and service with nonprofit organizations,” he said. “That’s where you see the vindication--when people take your advice and do something with it.”

For 2003, LULAC has honored 46 individuals nationally, a list which includes such notable figures as Dr. Robert E. Witt, president of the University of Alabama, Eduardo Najera, a forward with the Dallas Mavericks, and Dolores Huerta, who worked with Cesar Chavez in California establishing the United Farm Workers.

“ Jamie was selected for this honor for his many years at the university level, channeling his efforts into producing college graduates,” said Héctor Flores, LULAC national president. “Coming from a little border town himself, he has not forgotten his cultural roots and is always quick to promote cultural understanding and serve as a role model.

“ He is a great Mexican American, and a great Texan, and we need to clone him if we could,” Flores said. “He personifies that we seek the American dream, and there’s no quicker way to attain that than through a college education.”

The awards will be presented to recipients on Thursday, June 19, 2003 at the 74th LULAC National Convention in Orlando, Florida.