The McNair Scholars Program, a TRiO program, was established in 1986 in memory of astronaut-physicist and Challenger crew member Dr. Ronald E. McNair.  After his death, members of Congress provided funding for the Ronald E. McNair Scholars Program, which is dedicated to the high standard of achievement that Dr. McNair represented. The overall goal of this TRiO program is to increase the numbers of underrepresented groups in graduate education by providing enriching experiences, support, and guidance to program participants.

Whether or not you reach your goals in life depends entirely on how well you prepare for them and how badly you want them. You're eagles! Stretch your wings and fly to the sky."
 - Ronald E. McNair, PhD


Who knew preparing to become a PhD could be so much fun?!

This program can change your you can change the world! 


Eligibility Requirements:  
  • Sophomore or Junior OLLU Student
  • GPA of 3.0 or higher
  • SERIOUS Interest in earning a Ph.D., Ed.D., or other doctoral programs approved by the Department of Education
  • First generation college student who meets income criteria set by the U.S. Education Department OR Member of a group that is traditionally underrepresnted in graduate education as definted by the U.S. Education Department (Hispanic, African American, Native American, Alaskan Native, Native Hawaiian, Native American Pacific Islander) 

  • Special Note: Individuals whose sole interest is obtaining a professional doctorate such as the Doctorate of Veterinary Medicine (DVM), Juris Doctorate (JD), or Medical Doctorate (MD) are not eligible for the program, unless interested in the possibility of a dual degree (JD/PhD, MD/PhD, etc.). Individuals with such interests are encouraged to apply.

Contact Us
Phone:  (210) 434-6711(210) 434-6711 Ext. 2590
Fax :  (210) 431-3946

Meet the TRiO - McNair Program Staff      

McNair Project Specialist -
Cristal Lopez, M.A.

Cristal Lopez is the Project Specialist for the Ronald E. McNair Post Baccalaureate Achievement Program in undergraduate research.  Most recently, Cristal completed her M.A. in Spanish with an emphasis in Prose from Saint Louis University-Madrid Campus. She is also a former McNair Scholar from St. Edward’s University in Austin, Texas. Cristal has advising experience from St. Philip’s College, of the Alamo Community Colleges campuses, where she worked in the Student Success Division. Cristal’s research interests include college readiness, particularly focusing upon the academic gaps that exist between high school and higher education. Additionally, she is interested in the under-examined complexities surrounding inequities in the workplace.





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Please keep in contact with the McNair Staff, it is essential that you update the McNair Staff with any news regarding graduate degree attainment. 
You may also download the alumni contact form and email it to by clicking the submit button, fax it to 210-432-4463, or scan and email it. 

18th Annual McNair Scholars End of Year Banquet

OLLU 2012-2013 McNair Graduates

Coming Soon!

OLLU Spring 2012 McNair graduates
Seven Spring 2012 graduates are McNair Scholars. Read more  

OLLU McNair grad part of Ares I-X moon rocket launch
OLLU chemistry graduate works on NASA moon rocketThe first test flight of NASA’s new moon rocket in late October generated international media coverage. Behind the scenes of the launch was a graduate of Our Lady of the Lake University chemistry department, a woman who helped design and assemble the rocket motor.

Yvonne Villegas-Aguilera (‘02) is a solid propulsion systems engineer who monitored the temperature and performance of the rocket motor from Mission Control.
Read more

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