McNair Scholars Showcase Research at Poster Session in PCL

Research posters hanging on free-standing longitudinal frame in study area of scholars lab. Cafe benches in bright colors with solitary student studying and windows with a view of outdoors in the background.

Visitors to the Scholars Lab in the Perry-Castañeda Library on April 15 and 16 were met with an array of posters showcasing the scholarly endeavors of a group of exceptional undergraduates. The posters were created by participants in the McNair Scholars program, presenting a window into the research pursuits of low-income, first-generation students aspiring for advance degrees at UT.

The McNair Scholars program, a federally-funded initiative aimed at empowering undergraduates from underrepresented backgrounds, provides a platform for students to engage in substantive research under the mentorship of faculty members. These dedicated scholars not only delve into major original research projects but also endeavor to disseminate their findings through the presentation of research posters.

This is the first time their posters have been displayed in PCL, thanks to a collaborative effort between the McNair Scholars and the University of Texas Libraries.

This partnership germinated in 2021, initially stemming from a conversation between Dr. Eric Dieter, the program director of McNair Scholars, and Information Literacy Librarian Annah Hackett. Dieter sought support in equipping students with the necessary skills to navigate through the vast resources available in the university's libraries.

As discussions progressed, Dr. Nabeeha Chaudhary, the Senior Student Program Coordinator, broached the idea of showcasing the students' research posters at PCL. Hackett worked with Dr. Dieter and Dr. Chaudhary and coordinated with Facilities and Scholars Lab staff to organize the poster session. 

Looking ahead, Hackett and Scholars Lab Librarian Karina Sanchez envision further partnerships between the Libraries and the McNair Scholars. One potential avenue involves providing a platform for the scholars to present their research projects directly within the Scholars Lab, thus fostering greater visibility and engagement with the university community.

The recent poster display not only celebrates the academic achievements of the McNair Scholars but also underscores the invaluable role of collaboration in fostering a vibrant scholarly community within the university. As these partnerships continue to flourish, they pave the way for greater inclusivity and accessibility in the pursuit of knowledge and academic excellence.