Trinity senior Jamiless Lopez works in the Special Collections and Archives department in the Coates Library and is also a TaP partner (Tigers as Partners) for the Collaborative for Teaching and Learning. Both of these involvements help contribute to her future goal of becoming a history professor. At special collections, she digitizes and helps conserve important documents with a focus on San Antonio and Trinity history-related topics. As a TaP partner, she sits in on classes and provides feedback on TaP faculty’s teaching styles. With her aspirations to be a future professor, this job allows her special insight into teaching a successful course and the multiple aspects that make up an engaged classroom.
One of Lopez’s biggest achievements at Trinity has been her two summer research projects with Angela Tarango, Ph.D., associate professor of religion, where she worked with La Trinidad United Methodist Church. Lopez helped digitize archives from as far back as the late 19th century. She and Tarango worked to organize original material that was not being properly maintained. This research project allowed Lopez to be the first to interpret the meaning of many works, which are now the focus of her writing sample for graduate schools. As an undergraduate, this was a great opportunity to work firsthand on the specialized history of a Latino Methodist church and 20th-century life in San Antonio.
A turning point for Lopez, in terms of leadership, occurred during the fall semester, sophomore year. She had a family emergency that led to her missing five weeks of school. When she returned to Trinity, she knew she would have to advocate for herself and ask for the help she needed. She was behind on 14 assignments and still had midterms to make up, but with hard work and dedication, she was able to finish all her work before the end of winter break. Her resilience impressed her professors who had not expected that she would catch up so quickly. Lopez has also held officer positions in Trinity Diversity Connection and her sorority, Phi Delta Kappa.
Future plans for Lopez include graduate school after receiving her degree from Trinity in May 2020, on her way to becoming a history professor. She is considering Ph.D. programs throughout the U.S. that specialize in 20th century Mexican history. She was also recently accepted into the Discover UChicago program that offers talented individuals the opportunity to explore graduate education and meet faculty at the University of Chicago.
Lopez says that she is“thankful for the scholarship because the financial assistance will help [her] focus on being a student during senior year.” She says, “It brings me one step closer to being accepted into one of my top Ph.D. programs and becoming a professor, as well as an advocate for students who face adversities as I did.”
The UPS scholarship is provided by the Independent Colleges and Universities of Texas (ICUT) Foundation and its national partner, the Council of Independent Colleges (CIC). Through this program, the ICUT Foundation has awarded $170,250 in UPS Scholarships to 39 students at private institutions across Texas. The CIC is an association of more than 700 nonprofit independent colleges and universities and higher education affiliates and organizations that has worked since 1956 to support college and university leadership, advance institutional excellence, and enhance public understanding of private higher education’s contributions to society. CIC is the major national organization focused on providing services to leaders of independent colleges and universities, as well as conferences, seminars, and other programs that help institutions improve educational quality, administrative and financial performance, and institutional visibility.