Students receive new UIL opportunities this school year


Courtesy of Akins AHA

Students celebrate after their State Speech and Debate competition. More UIL options will be available this year.

Brenda Amaya-Rangel, News Editor

Many students are devoted to their academic studies and now these students have the opportunity to receive recognition for their hard work through UIL competitions.

This year Melissa Royer, AHA academy coordinator and film teacher, worked to expand the UIL competitions to more academic areas for students to participate in. In previous years, academic UIL participation at Akins was mostly limited to speech and debate besides Fine Arts related programs.

“I saw a need that we need to celebrate academics and we have lots of students who are going above and beyond everyday,” Royer said.

Some of the new areas of competition for UIL offered at Akins are Science, Social Studies, Accounting, Theatrical Designs, Essays and Computer Science.

Social studies teacher Melinda Horowitz is in charge of coaching students that are interested in the social studies competition for UIL.  This competition will include current issues and events in addition to having contests that will test students general knowledge and a specific study topic. Horowitz said that this is the first time that there has been a competition for Social Studies and she is looking forward to working with these students as their coach.

“Last year I took AP U.S. History so I kind of want to utilize the information that I learned last year and keep on using it if I have the opportunity in UIL.  This is also my first time competing at UIL,” senior Grace Chiu said.

Journalism teacher David Doerr said that he has wanted to coach in UIL journalism for several years now and thanks to Royer’s support he will be able to do so this year.

“UIL is one more way for our students to show of how awesome they are,” Doerr said.