Wellness and Recreational Sports Complex


Meet Your WRSC Instructors

Natalie Cervantes

Brenda Alanis has been working at UTPA Wellness and Recreational Sports since fall 2014 teaching dance and cycling classes.

Colette Cabot

Colette Cabot has been the Fitness & Wellness Coordinator at the WRSC since 2010 and an instructor since 2005. Colette is originally from Fruitport, Michigan, she loves Texas weather! Colette is a certified group exercise instructor and personal trainer through ACE, Certified Instructor for the American Red Cross, and holds fitness certifications/licenses in Turbo Kick, PiYo, Hip Hop Hustle, Zumba, SPINNING, Yoga Fit Level 1.  Active all her life Colette enjoys playing tennis, running, and taking on new athletic hobbies. 



JessicaJessica Johnstone is currently a full time student at UTPA.  She is majoring in Nursing with hopes of pursuing a Master's Degree in becoming a nurse anesthetist.  Jessica loves to keep a healthy lifestyle by staying active, eating healthy, and being happy.  She is actively involved in, school clubs/organizations, volunteering, teaching group exercise and running for the UTPA Track Team.  Jessica says she loves group exercise classes because they are fun and a great workout.  She says, "They are stress relievers, and they make me happy." 

  Andrea Alanis has been instructing Zumba classes at the WRSC since Spring 2012.

Vanessa Thomas has been instructing classess at the WRSC since Spring  2013.

Joy Hardwicke

Joy Hardwicke an English major at UTPA. Joy has been practicing and studying Pilates and Yoga since 2006 and has been employed at the WRSC since January 2011. Joy is a certified Pilates Mat,Yogafit Level I, YogaFit Yoga Core, and AFAA Primary Group Exercise instructor. Yoga and Pilates are two of Joy’s greatest passions. She says, “My Yoga and Pilates practice have continually improved and enriched my life, and I am grateful that I can share this knowledge to help others find strength, flexibility, and peace.”


Rolando Vela works at UTPA Wellness & Recreational Sports as a Rock Wall Attendant and Group Exercise Instructor teaching Country dance.  Rolando, a.k.a Roli is a Kinesiology major.

Nora Resendez has been teaching classess at the WRSC since Summer 2013.

Maxine Saenz is an undergraduate majoring in Education. After graduation Maxine hopes to pursue a career as an elementary school teacher. Maxine started working at the WRSC in Fall 2011 as a Weight/Cardio Supervisor. Since then Maxine has expanded into instructing group exercise classes and is currently the Fitness Intern. Fitness is not new to Maxine. During high school Maxine participated in softball, kickball, track, cross country, basketball, swimming, and cheerleading. More recently Maxine has taken up participating in several running and obstacle course races. Maxine maintains her fitness and has the goal of one day becoming a Body Builder; she looks to Fitness Role Model Dana Linn Bailey as her inspiration.

 Favorite quote: “If you don’t go after what you want, you’ll never have it. If you don’t ask, the answer is always no. If you don’t step forward, you’re always in the same place.





Irene Mercado is orginally from the Philippines, grew up in the Bahamas, and now resides in Edinburg.  Irene graduated from Edinburg High School in 2012 and started working at UTPA Wellness & Recreational Sports in fall 2013 as a Spirit and Marketing Assistant.  In spring 2014 Irene joined our group exercise team.  Irene is currently studying Mass Communication PR/Advertising and expects to graduate in spring 2015. 

Irene is another instructor that loves to dance.  Irene has been dancing since she was 3 years old performing in ballet, tap, and drill team.  Irene is a dancer for UTPA and danced 2 years in high school.

Favorite Quote:  "Be yourself, everyone else is already taken"




Nancy Garza started teaching for the WRSC in the Fall 2013.