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Ronald E. McNair Postbaccalaureate Achievement Program


Frequently Asked Questions

  • How am I compensated?
    In the McNair Scholars Program, you are paid for completing your research project and participating in the program. Scholars receive compensation through stipends.

  • Is the research stipend a scholarship?
    No, because no service is required from you if given a scholarship. McNair scholars put in hours on their research projects.

  • Will the payment affect my financial aid?
    No, the payment is awarded through stipends.

  • Do I have to attend graduate school at FSU?
    No, McNair Scholars receive fee waiver for more than 200 graduate schools across the nation, and can be accepted all over the nation.

  • What if I want to get a JD, MD, DDS, or PharmD?
    The McNair Program does not support these degrees. We only support students who want to earn PhDs. We however, will accept students who want to pursue dual degrees such as MD/PhD, DDS/PhD or PharmD/PhD.

  • Does it matter what my major is?
    No, McNair Scholars may come from any discipline.

  • Will participating in the Program cost me anything?
    No, it will only cost you your dedication and time.

  • What are some of the things McNair Scholars get FREE?
    GRE fee reduction waivers and graduate school application fee waivers.  Scholars are eligible for McNair fellowships at universities all over the nation. Computers and other resources are available to scholars to use. We also offer you free workshops, classes and social events with other McNair scholars across the nation. We are here to help you succeed academically.

  • Does it matter if I have already done or intend to do research in other programs?
    No, research through another program can provide a head start for McNair research.

  • What does it mean to be an underrepresented group?
    Underrepresented ethnic and racial groups are Black (non-Hispanic), Hispanic, and American Indian/Alaskan Native. The latter is to be documented as an enrolled member of a U.S. federally recognized American Indian tribe or Alaska Native Group, or possess one fourth degree (federally recognized) Indian blood prior to selection.

  • Are part-time students eligible to become McNair Scholars?
    The requirements state that you have to be enrolled at FSU and hold a full-time status (12 units or more).

  • What if work, family, or other commitments conflict with the summer research internship?
    There must be a balance between your commitments outside academics and your commitment to furthering your education.  You will have to manage your time and energy in graduate school, so we expect you to do the same in the McNair Summer Research Internship.

  • May I choose my own mentor?
    Yes, but we do ask that your primary mentor be a FSU faculty member with a doctoral degree.
  • I'm a senior. Is it too late to become a McNair Scholar?
    No, but if you are a senior, we need to have you in the Program at least the summer BEFORE you graduate
  • What should you do before your interview with the McNair Scholars Office? 
    Review the McNair Scholars website (if you are on this page, you have begun this step)

 Be committed to obtaining your Ph.D. (in any area of study) 

 Research the field you may want to pursue as a graduate student (i.e. Biology, Sociology, Mathematics, Graduate School) 

 Research what program will be most compatible with your interests and abilities

 Know if you are available to fulfill the summer requirements of the McNair Program (vigorous research, GRE preparation, poster presentations, etc) 

 Research FSU faculty you may want as a research mentor (a former professor, etc.) 

 Understand the McNair Program only suppors students who want to earn a Ph.D. 


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