Frequently Asked Questions

Who should apply?

Sophomores and Juniors who meet any or all of the the following demographic characteristics: first in their family to get a four-year degree, receive Pell funding, identify with an ethnic background that is under-represented in graduate education.

What’s the application like?

Students create a log-in and can start and stop an application at anytime. The application includes demographic information, need-based information, a 500 word essay, and three recommendation forms that will be sent to faculty, staff, or other supporter of the student.

What type of grades should I have?

We encourage students to apply if they have a 3.0 or higher.

Is this a scholarship?

It is not a scholarship, rather it is a program of support that includes stipends for research and travel funding.

What does this cost?

No, all services and support are provided at no cost to the students. The McNair Program is one of many TRIO programs (like Upward Bound and Student Support Services), and the funding is provided by the U.S. Department of Education.

What type of commitment is this?

Summer: Students enter the program in the McNair Summer Academy, which includes a $2800 funding, a series of workshops, and 20 hours per week of research work

Academic Year: Students continue their work in the following academic year and are expected to: meet with staff and faculty members at least two times per month, attend at least one group meeting a month, complete a research project that includes a formal paper and presentation of research. We provide workshops, guidance, and advisement to help students through all the commitments.

Why should I participate in a program like McNair?

Most advance careers now required graduate degrees. The graduate school application process is a lot different from undergrad and it helps to have coaching through it. Graduate programs expect students to have research experience before applying. Graduate school is expensive, but there is more than enough funding for most students to pay for all of their education costs and even have money to live on. We help you learn all there is to know.

Can I work and do this program?

We understand that the reality of most student's situation require them to earn money to live and pay for school. We work with students to help transition their work efforts to research experiences and other career-building opportunities. If you think you will have difficulty balancing work and McNair Committments, contact us and we can talk to you about it. 

Does this program work?

More than 80% of our participants enroll in graduate school within a few years of graduation, and more than 90% finish their graduate degree

What if my question wasn't answered here?

Email Program Director, Joseph Givens, givens@lsu.edu. He will be happy to chat with you about the program.