Oozeball has returned for its 20th anniversary, Comets! Since 2002, Oozeball has been a staple tradition at UT Dallas, an annual mud volleyball tournament hosted by the UT Dallas Student Ambassadors and University Recreation. This full-day event consists of fun in the mud activities, like tug of war and slip n' slide, all of which surround the main attraction: a 24-team volleyball battle for glory. The event is primarily for students, but alumni, faculty and staff are also encouraged to join in the fun!
As part of the Oozeball tradition, the Student Ambassador Program donates the proceeds from the event in support of on-campus programs and offices that significantly give back to the UT Dallas community and its students. This year, all proceeds from the event will be given directly to UT Dallas First-Generation Student Programs team, which strives to provide centralized programming for first-generation students whose parents or guardians did not complete a four-year degree in the U.S. Over 20% of the UT Dallas student body falls within this demographic, making funding for these programs essential as the program leaders strive to support these students through events, scholarships, and a sense of belonging on-campus. All donations are tax-deductible, and a donation of any amount helps tremendously.
About First-Generation Student Programs
The Office of Undergraduate Education collaborates with multiple campus departments to offer centralized and comprehensive programming for first-generation students. Working together with the First-Generation Student Support Network, our programming provides information sessions, meet and greets with mentors, streamed and recorded content, service events and legacy projects to support future first-generation students.
Of the over 20,000 actively enrolled undergraduate students at UT Dallas in spring of 2022, 4,242 (20%) are first-generation students. Over 500 first-generation students are expected to graduate this spring.
First-Generation Student Programs focuses on providing a balanced portfolio of both in-person and virtual programming. Because first-generation students are more likely to work and have familial obligations, we prioritize low per-student event expenses, so depending upon the event or activity, $10 to $20 could fund a first-generation student’s participation. We also invest in belonging, identity and graduate recognition, such as our Proud to be First program t-shirts and pins. Our priority is raising funds for scholarships. The need for financial support is among the most anticipated challenges for first-generation students and financial concerns are the number one reason students do not re-enroll at UT Dallas.
Quotes from First-Generation Students
“I am so thankful for First-Gen Programs at UTD! As a first-generation student and first-generation immigrant, the support I received from this program is invaluable. I can’t wait to see how the program continues to grow!”
-Ifunayna Ngadi, Class of 2022
“As the saying goes, it truly takes a village to raise someone up. Whether it is the mentors that guide us or the network that supports us. It is through the first-generation program that we find connections, and overcome obstacles”
-Samuel Chang, Class of 2021
Please share this message with friends, family, current students, alumni, or anyone who wants to support first-generation students at UT Dallas!