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Texas State Firsts

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First Student

Ethie Lee Pool was the first student to enroll in the Southwest Texas State Normal School when its doors opened in 1903. She was the keynote speaker at the Ex Students’ Banquet held Nov. 30, 1929.

First Black Student

The integration of Black students occurred at Texas State in February 1963 when five young Black women registered for classes as a result of the U.S. District Court order. Of the original five, Dana Jean Smith of San Marcos graduated, receiving a bachelor of science in education with a major in elementary education in 1967.

First Hispanic Student

Records verify that a Hispanic surnamed student enrolled at the university as early as 1906. Maria Elena Zamora (who would later marry and become Maria Elena Zamora-O’Shea) earned a teaching certificate in 1906 and renewed that certificate in the summer of 1911.

Her 1935 novel El mesquite: a story of the early Spanish settlements between the Nueces and the Rio Grande was recently re-issued in 2000 with several historical introductions.

First Degrees Conferred

  • The first bachelor’s degree was awarded in 1919 to Mamie E. Brown, who received three permanent teaching certificates from the Normal.
  • The first master’s degree was awarded in 1937 to Margaret McClung Walker, who received a Master's in Educational Administration. (Her daughter, Chloe Walker Sanborn, wrote a thesis in 1934- The Story of Riverside.)
  • The first two doctoral degrees were awarded in May of 2000 to Lisa DeChano (Geography) and Todd Votteler (Geography).

First Faculty Members

J.E. Blair
J.S. Brown
Lucy Burleson
Mary S. Butler
Alfred Freshney
Willie S. Foster
Thomas Green Harris
Lula Hines
Helen Hornsby
W.A. Palmer
Annie Pearsoll
J.E. Pritchett
Jessie Sayers
Lillie Shaver
Maud M. Shipe
S.W. Stanfield
Kate White

First Names of the University

September 9, 1903 – 1918            Southwest Texas State Normal School
1918-1923                                   Southwest Texas State Normal College
1923-1959                                   Southwest Texas State Teachers College
1959-1969                                   Southwest Texas State College
1969-2003                                   Southwest Texas State University
2003 - 2013                                 Texas State University-San Marcos
September 2013 - present            Texas State University