Answers to Go with Susan Smith
Q. I was driving up Moore Street and noticed a house with a Texas State University sign – Strahan House. What University program operates in that building?
A. Let’s start with where the house is. Moore Street is on the eastern boundary of the old Lamar School property. Palmer’s Restaurant is at the corner of Hutchison and Moore. If you continue straight on Moore, you climb the very steep hill straight up to campus. The San Marcos Baptist Academy used to be at the top of Moore Street.
Strahan House and Strahan Arena are both named after Oscar Strahan. I checked the 1961 San Marcos telephone book to confirm that 626 Moore was the home of O.A. Strahan.
The website of the University Archives reports that Oscar Strahan served as athletic director at Texas State for 42 years, from 1919 to 1961. He coached football, basketball and track and field. It also offers this clue to the pronunciation of that surname – sounds like strand without the “d.”
Strahan House is now used for the Texas State Upward Bound Program. I found the following description in a Sept.8, 2017 University Star online article by Lauren Rexroad.
The headline reads “High School Students Benefit from Bobcat Volunteers’ Advice.”
It continues: “Texas State students mentor high school students, encouraging them to graduate and go to college.
“The Upward Bound Program is designed to help low-income high school students prepare for college… It provides after school academic sessions, a summer residential program and visits to different colleges in the state.
“Ray Cordero, grant director of Upward Bound, worked with high school students in the program for years. 'The Upward Bound program is an early academic intervention and college preparatory program,' Cordero said. What Upward Bound is designed to do is to provide academic assistance and intervention for high school students and then assistance in enrollment in post-secondary institutions.”
The Upward Bound program was created by the Higher Education Act 1965 signed by Lyndon B. Johnson. President Johnson was a 1930 graduate of Southwest Texas State Teachers College, now Texas State University - San Marcos.