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Become a McNair Scholar

The Ronald E. McNair Post-Baccalaureate Achievement Program seeks students who are committed to attending graduate school and earning a doctoral degree. Students must be interested in pursuing a research doctoral degree (PhD, EdD, or equivalent) in any concentration. Professional doctoral degrees (JD, PharmD, MD, PT, OT, DNP, DDS) are not eligible.

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Benefits and Opportunities

  • Academic coaching
  • Financial wellness coaching
  • Mentorship
  • GRE test preparation
  • Visits to graduate schools
  • Graduate school application fee waivers by most universities. 
  • Research and scholarly activities
    • A stipend of up to $2,800 paid during the summer.
    • Paid room and board on campus during 10-week Summer Research Institute. 
    • Opportunities to present research at local, state, and/or national level
  • Participation in cultural events


Interested students must meet the following requirements for consideration for acceptance into the McNair Scholars Program.

Additionally, a student must:

  • Be a U.S. citizen or permanent resident
  • Be committed to attending graduate school and earning a doctoral degree 
  • A full-time OLLU student and have a sophomore or junior standing (seniors are accepted on a limited basis)
  • Have a GPA of 3.0 or higher

Program Requirements and Expectations

As a McNair Scholar, you are required to commit in writing to all program requirements and expectations as noted in the Scholar Handbook. 

  • 10-week paid summer research internship
  • Attend all program sponsored events/activities
  • Meet with program staff monthly
  • Register for three (one credit hour) courses
  • Complete a research project within one year
  • Register for a minimum of 15 credit hours per semester.
  • Attain a doctoral degree within 10 years of attaining a bachelor’s degree from OLLU.

Application Process

Applying to the McNair Scholars Program is a multi-step process. 

  • Completed application
  • Income Status Verification Document or copy of most recent income tax forms
  • Unofficial transcripts
  • Personal statement
  • Two letters of recommendation.
    • One must be from a faculty member who can speak to your potential as a researcher.
    • One must be a personal recommender who can speak to your potential to persist through a doctoral program.