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2023 South Texas Literacy Symposium

February 25, 2023 @ 8:30 am - 4:00 pm

Thank you so much for coming! This event is now over.

The 2023 South Texas Literacy Symposium is co-presented by the South Texas Literacy Coalition and Literacy Texas.

The symposium will be held on

Saturday, February 25, 8:45 am to 4:00 pm

on the UTRGV Campus, 1201 West University Drive, Edinburg TX 78539.

The symposium is part of the annual UTRGV Festiba celebration and has the theme “Transforming our world through arts and literacy.”

Check-in for registered participants will open at 8:00 am and both breakfast and a working lunch will be provided.

This symposium is offered free of charge to educators, volunteer tutors, ESL teachers, and other library and nonprofit professionals who work in the fields of adult and family literacy.

See the schedule outline below; find detailed descriptions of the workshops here.


SYMPOSIUM OPENS: 8:00 am – 8:45 am
Check-in, breakfast, visit exhibitor and author tables

Greetings, welcome, and introductions: 8:45 am – 9:30 am
Dr. Dahlia Guerra, Founder/Director of FESTIBA, The University of Texas Rio Grande Valley
Dr. Jeffrey Ward, Dean of the College of Fine Arts, The University of Texas Rio Grande Valley
Kendra de la Garza, President, South Texas Literacy Coalition
Steve Banta, Executive Director, Literacy Texas

Panel Discussion: 9:30 am – 10:15 am (45 min)
Connecting the Dots in Adult Literacy: The Role of Authors and Teachers of Literacy and the Arts
Guiding Question: How do we help communities understand that literacy and the arts have a major impact on life-long learning and on the future progress of every citizen.
Panelists: Katelyn Renteria, Moderator & Panelist, Local Author
Dr. Jeffrey Ward, Dean, College of Fine Arts
Daniel García Ordaz, TEDx Speaker and 2023 McAllen Poet Laureate
Letty Leija, Director, Dustin Michael Sekula Memorial Library

Concurrent Session 1: 10:30 am – 11:30 am (60 min)

Online & Mobile Learning: Creating Classroom Publications Using Common Apps & Sites

Grant Writing – You’ve Got This!

Family Literacy Activates: Promoting School Success

BREAK: 11:30am – 12:00 pm
Visit exhibitor and author tables

WORKING LUNCH & NETWORKING SESSIONS: 12:00 pm – 1:15 pm (Ballroom)
Networking  – “Trending Issues in Literacy”

Concurrent Session 2: 1:30 pm – 2:30 pm (60 min)

Cultural Competence, Challenges, and Social Support Factors Linked to Poor Literacy in the RGV

Getting Your Volunteers Started to Meet Your Program Goals

Career Planning for Youth: Consider Where the Jobs Are

Concurrent Session 3: 2:40 pm – 3:40 pm (60 min)

Connecting the Dots: Using Creative Writing to Teach Literacy Skills

Motivating and Recognizing Volunteers

Families Rock Together: Engaging in Your Child’s Academic Achievement Without a Helicopter!

SYMPOSIUM CLOSES: 3:40pm – 4:00 pm
Evaluation, wrap-up, door prizes (must be present to win!)


Schedule will be kept as current as possible but is subject to change; check back here for updates

PD Certificates

Certificates of completion will be awarded after the event.
Complete the survey we send you via email after the symposium is finished to give your details and get your certificate.

University of Texas Rio Grande Valley: Directions & Parking

Click here for maps, directions, and parking information


Download a PDF copy of the 2023 program

Download a flyer to display at your location or send to others who may be interested in attending

Special thanks to:

South Texas Literacy Coalition

University of Texas Rio Grande Valley, College of Fine Arts

The Texas Center for Advancement of Literacy & Learning (TCALL)

The Texas Workforce Commission

Read more about the annual regional literacy symposia here.

Watch this space, sign up for our newsletter, or follow us on social media to get all the details as they’re confirmed:

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February 25, 2023
8:30 am - 4:00 pm
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South Texas Literacy Coalition
Literacy Texas

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