Shirlyn McKenzie Endowed Professorship Fund in Clinical Laboratory Sciences

The Shirlyn McKenzie Endowed Professorship Fund in Clinical Laboratory Sciences was established in 2009 through generous gifts from a multitude of donors who wished to honor Shirlyn McKenzie, Ph.D., MLS(ASCP)(CM),SH(ASCP)CM the standards of excellence established under her leadership as Chair of the Department of Clinical Laboratory Sciences at UT Health San Antonio.

She received her undergraduate degree in Medical Technology and Biology from the University of Wisconsin at Superior, her Master’s degree in Biology from the University of Texas at San Antonio, and her Doctorate of Philosophy in Administration for Higher Education from Texas A&M University.

In 1980, Dr. McKenzie became an instructor and later Program Director of Clinical Laboratory Sciences at the UT Health San Antonio. She was named Chair of the department in 1985 and was promoted to full professor in 1995. Under her guidance, the department grew from a small, single-focus baccalaureate program to one that offers multiple undergraduate and graduate options and flexible degree plans for students with a variety of backgrounds who wish to enter the medical laboratory disciplines. 

She also led the development of the first web-based course offered by the University of Texas Tele-Campus. Having written the leading textbook on clinical laboratory hematology that is used nationally as well as internationally, she has literally taught thousands of medical laboratory scientists throughout the world. Dr. McKenzie has published four books (in both English and Spanish) in addition to numerous abstracts, chapters, editorials, journal articles and article reviews. A naturally accomplished speaker, she has given over 150 presentations at state, national, and international meetings.

One highlight of her career at UT Health was an invitation in 1992 to serve as the keynote speaker at the Australian/New Zealand Institute of Medical Scientists. At the time, she was not aware of how far the global impact of her textbooks had carried, and it was an incredible honor to serve as their featured guest.

Dr. McKenzie was also the first honoree to be presented with the Lifetime Achievement Award from the American Society for Clinical Laboratory Sciences in 2014. 

Her tireless efforts to build a nationally ranked and globally recognized program in medical laboratory sciences established an incredible foundation for students, faculty, and the South Central Texas community. The Shirlyn McKenzie Endowed Professorship Fund in Clinical Laboratory Sciences will last in perpetuity as a reflection of her dedication to educating the next generation of health care professionals.

Shirlyn McKenzie with Nursing School collegues

A distinguished candidate will be selected to fill this position when the endowment meets or exceeds $100,000. These transformational investments allow for the recruitment and retention of the highest caliber faculty, research innovators and leaders within their field, who contribute their talents toward making lives better in our community and beyond. We are grateful to our generous benefactors and thoughtful donors who make these positions possible.

To make a gift in support of the Shirlyn McKenzie Endowed Professorship Fund in Clinical Laboratory Sciences, complete and submit the form below. If you have any questions, please contact Lindsay Helsel, Director of Development for the School of Health Professions.

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