McNair Scholars Program Overview of the McNair Scholars Program The goal of the McNair Scholars Program

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  • McNair




  • McNair Scholars Program Administrative Roles

    Patricia Spaniol-Mathews, Ph.D. Executive Director Phone: 361 825-3163 Location: GLASSCOCK 151A Email: Areas of Responsibility:

     Budget/Compliance

     Faculty/Mentor Coordination

     Graduate School Recommendations

     Journal

     McNair Day

     Student Orientation

     Student Recruitment

     Travel Approval Anabel Hernandez

    Program Manager Phone: 361 825-3835 Location: GLASSCOCK 150 Email: Areas of Responsibility:

     Academic Advising & Counseling

     Coordination of Research Presentation

     Coordination of Seminars/Workshops

     Financial Aid/Financial Literacy Assistance

     Graduate School Admission Assistance

     Graduate School Placement

     Individual Educational Plans

     Scholar File Documentation

     Student Recruitment

    Maggie Cooper Administrative Assistant Phone: 361 825-3687 Location: GLASSCOCK 151D Email: Areas of Responsibility:

     Clerical Support

     Data Input & Student Tracking

     Student Access Database Documentation mailto:anabel.hernandez@tamucc

  • Dr. Ronald E. McNair



    Dr. Ronald Erwin McNair, Physicist & Astronaut,

    dared to dream. As an African-American growing up

    in a poor community in the South, he encountered

    discrimination early in his youth.

    Yet this did not stop him from pursuing his dream

    of becoming a scientist.


    In 1971, he graduated magna cum laude from North

    Carolina AT&T State University with a B.S. degree

    in physics. Ronald McNair then enrolled in the

  • Massachusetts Institute of Technology. In 1976, at the

    age of 26, he earned his Ph.D. degree in laser physics.


    Dr. McNair soon became a recognized expert in laser

    physics while working as a staff physicist with Hughes

    Research Laboratory. He was selected by NASA for the

    space shuttle program in 1978 and was a mission

    specialist aboard the 1984 flight of the shuttle Challenger.


    For his achievements, Ronald McNair received three

    honorary doctorate degrees and many fellowships

    and commendations. These distinctions include:

    Presidential Scholar, 1967-71; Ford Foundation

    Fellow, 1971-74; National Fellowship Fund Fellow,

    1974-75, Omega Psi Phi Scholar of the Year, 1975;

    Distinguished National Scientist, National Society of

    Black Professional Engineers, 1979; and the Friend

    of Freedom Award, 1981.


    Ronald McNair also held a fifth degree black belt

    in karate and was an accomplished jazz saxophonist.

    He was married and was the dedicated father of a

    daughter and a son.

    After his death in the Challenger explosion in January

    1986, members of Congress provided funding for the

    Ronald E. McNair Post-Baccalaureate Achievement

    Program to encourage college students with similar

    backgrounds to Dr. McNair to enroll in graduate

    studies. Thus, the program targets students of color

    and low income, first-generation college students.

    This program is dedicated to the high standards of

    achievement inspired by Dr. McNair’s life.

  • Ronald E. McNair Post-Baccalaureate Achievement Program

    THE NATIONAL MCNAIR SCHOLAR PLEDGE© I ______________________ will strive to honor and respect the legacy set forth by Dr. Ronald E. McNair and former McNair scholars I will work earnestly toward the realization of my educational goals I will embrace the challenge of attaining baccalaureate and post baccalaureate education through hard work, perseverance, and persistence. I will strive to overcome any obstacles, barriers and limitations that might hinder, derail, or prevent my educational attainment. I will endeavor to achieve excellence by conceiving of and believing in excellence in my personal, professional and academic endeavors. I will observe high ethical, moral and academic standards. I understand that I must be trustworthy, honorable and noble Respect myself, my peers, and the people who contribute to my personal and academic success I will graciously extend myself and service to the uplifting of future TRiO students and promising scholars I will be a part of the solution and not the problem; I am a McNair Scholar and I believe in the words of Dr. McNair: “Whether or not [I] reach [my] goals in life depends entirely on how well [I] prepare for them and how badly [I] want them.” With this pledge, I hereby accept the responsibilities and privileges of induction into the Ronald E. McNair Post baccalaureate Achievement Program.

    Conceived and Authored by Wallace Southerland III, Ph.D., Associate Director, McNair Program at the University of Maryland, College Park and Cheryl Bailey Gittens, Director

    McNair Scholars Program at Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University with contributions by members of the national McNair Scholars community

    ©May 2009 University of Maryland, College Park and Virginia Polytechnic Institute and

    State University McNair Scholars Programs

  • Introduction

    The Texas A&M University – Corpus Christi McNair Scholars Handbook is for your

    informational use and is a basic tool to ensure that you have a guide that describes the

    policies, services, benefits, expectations, and resources of the Ronald E. McNair Post-

    Baccalaureate Achievement Program at Texas A&M University – Corpus Christi (McNair

    Scholars Program).

    This handbook has been designed in a chronological fashion for ease of use and is by no

    means exhaustive, as many policies, procedures, and rules will be provided as needed

    during McNair monthly meetings and in written announcements, bulletin boards,

    electronic-mail messages, and telephone calls. This handbook is subject to modifications

    as needed. It is important that you keep your handbook as up-to-date as possible.

    The McNair Scholars Program will give you new opportunities and adequate support to

    help you reach your academic and professional goals. The success of the McNair

    Scholars Program is based on a collaborative effort of faculty mentors, program staff, and

    of course you.

    The McNair Scholars Program is designed to help high-achieving, motivated, historically

    disadvantaged low-income and first-generation college students and underrepresented

    students in graduate school receive a Ph.D. or an Ed.D. in their field of study. McNair

    Scholars are given the opportunity to collaborate with a faculty mentor on a research

    project of their choosing.

    McNair Scholars are expected to represent academic excellence by achieving to the best

    of their ability in academic and professional endeavors and engaging in community

    service to help others attain success.

  • The McNair & TRIO Connection

    In the middle to late 1960’s, Congress established a series of programs to ensure equal educational

    opportunity for all Americans, regardless of race, ethnic background, or economic circumstance.

    These programs, funded under Title IV of the Higher Education Act of 1965, are referred to as the

    TRIO Programs. Legislation was established for TRIO programs to provide assistance to students

    who are low-income, first generation, and underrepresented in higher education. The original

    TRIO programs were Upward Bound, Talent Search, and Student Support Services. The name

    TRIO has been retained even though three additional programs (Educational Opportunity Centers,

    Ronald E. McNair Post Baccalaureate Achievement Programs, and training programs for TRIO

    staff) were later added. McNair Programs joined the TRIO family in 1986 in memory of Dr.

    Ronald E. McNair, a gifted scientist from an underprivileged background who rose to achieve the

    highest academic distinction possible, and to become one of the first African Americans in the

    NASA program. All TRIO Programs are funded by the United States Department of Education.

    Today, more than 2,800 TRIO programs serve 850,000 students. Over 1,200 colleges, universities,

    and agencies in the nation currently house TRIO programs. There are numerous McNair programs

    in operation at various universities throughout the United States. In 2007, Texas A&M University-

    Corpus Christi (TAMUCC) was selected as one of two hundred institutions to host a McNair

    Scholars Program. TAMUCC also has a Student Support Services Program. These programs

    operate under the guidance of Dr. Gerardo Moreno, the Assistant Vice President for Student


  • Overview of the McNair Scholars Program

    The goal of the Mc