McNair Scholars Program
The Ronald E. McNair Postbaccalaureate Achievement Program is one of the grant-funded Federal TRIO Programs designed to assist high-achieving undergraduate students that are first-generation college students, who are Pell eligible and/or members of an under-represented ethnic group in the quest to obtain a graduate degree, ultimately the PhD.
This program assists undergraduate students in preparation for Graduate Studies through various scholarly activities. Students apply who would like to receive financial support for conducting research and who would like to work one on one with a faculty mentor and members of program staff.
Attention Students: Applications for the 2023-2024 Academic Year are closed. Please complete this interest form if you want to be contacted when the next application window opens in January 2024.
If you have an interest in Attending Graduate School and want help in successfully navigating the many hurdles and
- have a 3.0 or higher GPA
- are Pell eligible
- are a first-generation college student
- and/or identify as part of a traditionally underrepresented ethnic group
APPLICATION DEADLINE: Please stay tuned until January 2024.
Educational Benefits of the McNair Scholars Program
- Paid research experience for traditional McNair students
- One-on-one faculty mentoring
- Graduate school application assistance
- Assistance with identifification of potential funding sources for graduate study
- Excellent networking opportunities
- Opportunity to write for publication
- Waiver of Application Fees for many Graduate Schools-including University of Cincinnati
Who is Dr. McNair?
Dr. Ronald E. McNair (1950-1986) was America's second African-American astronaut in space and was killed in the space shuttle Challenger explosion on Jan. 28, 1986.
Dr. McNair, despite having come from a low-income household, graduated Magna Cum Laude with a Bachelor of Science degree from North Carolina A & T University in 1971. Just five short years later, he completed his Doctor of Philosophy degree in physics from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT). Dr. McNair was the first in his family to obtain a doctorate degree.
Services of the McNair Program
The McNair Prep Program targets 1st year undergraduate students and gives them the opportunity to conduct scholarly research during the academic year, through faculty mentoring and shadowing. All students participate in campus-based student workshops and seminars that better prepare them for the graduate school admissions process and for the Graduate Record Exam (GRE). This program targets 1st year students whereas the traditional McNair Program targets 2nd year students.*
Student Eligibility Requirements
To be accepted into the program students must demonstrate that they are goal oriented, highly motivated and high achieving. They must have a minimum grade point average of 3.0 on 4.0 scale and maintain a 3.0 GPA for continued participation. Students must be able to identify and work with a faculty mentor.
Traditional McNair Scholars Program
The McNair Scholars Program targets 2nd students to assist them in conducting research during their 3rd academic year and continuing into a summer research internship with the faculty of their choosing. The summer component gives students an 8 week paid summer research opportunity. Students also participate in a summer graduate school trip and attend regional and national research conferences- All Expenses paid by the McNair Program.
Student Eligibility Requirements
To be accepted into the program students must demonstrate that they are goal oriented, highly motivated and high achieving. They must have a minimum grade point average of 3.0 on 4.0 scale and maintain a 3.0 GPA for continued participation. Students must be able to identify and work with a faculty mentor. Must be full-time student with 60 credit hours by entry into program.
Students must also meet the federal eligbility requirements.
- Be a citizen or permanent resident of the United States of America
- Be a first generation college student (neither parent holding a Bachelor's degree) and meet the TRIO Federal Income Requirements, OR Be a member of an ethnic group traditionally underprepresented in graduate studies.
The McNair Scholars program encourages students to participate in educational study abroad programs and experiences during their academic career. To assist in providing rich opportunities for students, the McNair Program works in collaboration with UC International Programs and the College of Education, Criminal Justice, and Human Services, to provide service learning opportunities in foreign countries.
These trips are ideal for students who want to study abroad but only for a short time period. Currently, we host 2 trips and while they are only 10 day trips, they result in a very full student experience! The trips are not exclusive to McNair Scholars. In coordination with the UC International Programs Office, the McNair Scholars Program is committed to ensuring the safety and health of scholars as they study abroad.
Graduate Student Mentor Program
Program pairs senior McNair Scholars with graduate students to assist with the graduate school application process and learn first-hand about graduate school. Graduate student mentors offer a unique "insider's" perspective on what it's like to apply to and attend graduate school.
- Highly rewarding
- Not time-intensive
If you are a UC graduate student and interested in becoming a McNair graduate mentor. Please complete this form.
We have a dedicated staff and group of mentors to support students on the journey from undergraduate to graduate education.