The University Star


Student lassos sustainable lifestyle through organic soap business

A woman with brown hair pulled back wears a light green silk dress and looks to the side while laying on a white floor.

Anna Durhman, Life and Arts Contributor

September 25, 2020

Determined to establish a more sustainable, healthy and overall zero-waste lifestyle, Texas State student Marcie Sobol took her passion for making organic zero waste soaps and shaped it into a profitable business. In July, Marcie Sobol, an economics senior, launched her small business, Sustainable Cowgirl, in pursuit of helping herself and others live a more sustainable, organic life. The name Sustainabl...

Texas State professor, students create wound care treatment

A grey rectangle packet with a white and orange rectangle label that reads

Cristela Jones, Life and Arts Reporter

September 22, 2020

A team of Texas State staff, students and alumni are hoping a new accelerated healing gel can become the next revolutionary creation to treat wounds. The peroxide-based gel called AccelGel was co-invented by Texas State graduate professor Gary Beall and Lamar University professor David Cocke to help...

Texas State’s ‘Mama’ retires, leaves legacy of hope and acceptance

A woman dressed in white pants, a blue top and patterned sweater stands and smiles for a photo.

Sarah Hernandez, Life and Arts Reporter

September 16, 2020

It was a typical workday for Jonnie Wilson as a hospital cook in Lockhart, Texas, when someone said to her, "You're too smart to be working here." At only 22 years old, Wilson had just gotten out of an abusive marriage and was working multiple jobs, receiving food stamps and living in public housing, trying her best to raise three daughters. Given her circumstanc...

Brains and braids: Engineering student twirls up hair talent on TikTok

Anita Natufe, a Black woman with long, dark curly hair wearing a grey shirt and black paisley mask, braids the hair of another woman with dark brown hair wearing a maroon mask.

Cristela Jones, Life and Arts Reporter

September 15, 2020

Anita Natufe, like many others, joined TikTok as a way to watch funny videos and share them with her friends. Little did she know the app would take her hair business to new heights. Until last year, Natufe, a civil engineering sophomore at Texas State, only used Instagram, Twitter and Snapchat to...

Hays-Caldwell Women’s Center aims to prevent abusive relationships

A light purple house pictured with a purple heart coming out of the chimney.

Leanne Castro, Life and Arts Contributor

September 14, 2020

Starting as a small group of female Texas State students in the late seventies, Hays-Caldwell Women's Center (HCWC) has since grown into a multi-county organization with a mission to establish a zero-tolerance policy for abuse of any kind. The HCWC believes in change—both its necessity and possibility....

The Davenport serves up original drinks, dishes to downtown San Marcos

A female bartender wearing a black face mask and a red plaid crop top pours an orange-colored cocktail into a glass at a bar. Bottles of liquor sit on the counter behind her.

Vanessa Buentello, Life and Arts Contributor

September 9, 2020

A combination of modern retro style, original cocktails and martinis and Spanish influenced cuisine joins the downtown San Marcos bar scene at The Davenport—a quality, pet-friendly lounge. Originally from Houston, The Davenport, located on 194 S Guadalupe St., opened its first location almost 30...

Alumna and author of Pixar’s “Coco” novel inspires readers with inclusive storytelling

Author and Texas State alumna Diana López, with a blue, black and white top and red-ish earrings, smiles for a headshot photo.

Sarah Hernandez, Life and Arts Contributor

August 26, 2020

A Texas State alumna is inspiring readers of all ages with engaging stories and colorful characters in both her adult novellas and middle-grade books. Diana López, an award-winning novelist who earned her master's from Southwest Texas State in 1999, began her writing career while teaching at a San...

Alumnus helps Latinx community through bilingual errand service

People wearing protective face masks and gloves help unbag and distribute boxes of gloves and personal protective equipment kits outside in a parking lot.

Brooklyn Solis, Life and Arts Contributor

August 17, 2020

As COVID-19 continues to disproportionately impact the Latinx community, a Texas State alumnus and his wife have worked together to develop Ayuda—an errand service group that accommodates both Spanish and English speaking users. The at-risk reality Latinxs face due to COVID-19 is what originally...

Self-taught student creates handcrafted leather products

A colorful, detailed leather wallet featuring images of two men in crowns.

Leanne Castro, Life and Arts Contributor

August 12, 2020

Trevor Weinaug was shopping around for a leather belt in 2016 when he began to realize how pricey they could be. Instead of making an expensive decision he would have later regretted, his passion for trying new things motivated him to watch tutorials online and figure out how to create his own. “I...

Fishy Business: A.E. Wood Fish Hatchery undergoes busiest time of year

A man looking through a microscope inside of a lab.

Rebecca Harrell, Multimedia Editor

July 30, 2020

Less than a mile off IH-35 stands an agricultural establishment pivotal to Texas waters and wildlife. Built in 1949, A.E. Wood Fish Hatchery is responsible for spawning, hatching and raising numerous species of freshwater fish to upkeep its population within state waters. The hatchery is one of five ...

Texas State alumnus brings mini-golf course to San Marcos

A Texas-shaped golf hole located at Putt Pub, a new putt golf course set to open in San Marcos.  Each of Putt Pub's 18 holes features a unique design or game. Photo credit: Photo courtesy of Putt Pub

Leanne Castro, Life and Arts Contributor

July 22, 2020

Putt Pub, an 18-hole mini-golf course with cold drinks, food trucks, games, fire pits, and a seesaw is ready to take a swing at the San Marcos entertainment scene in just a matter of weeks. Reilly Hursley, a Texas State alumnus, came up with the idea of an adult playground devoted to putting after...

Texas State alumna donates face mask income to student food pantry

A Texas State alumni holds up

Trinity Dayton, Life and Arts Reporter

July 8, 2020

With plenty of fabric and desire to serve her community, Texas State alumna Hillary Kotwal raises money for Bobcat Bounty through proceeds made from selling handmade cloth face masks. Kotwal, a stay-at-home mother of two and consulting dietician, graduated from Texas State in 2013 with a B.S. in f...

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