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McNair Scholars

Application Information

The crew of Space Shuttle mission STS-51-L pose for their official portrait on November 15, 1985. In the back row from left to right: Ellison S. Onizuka, Sharon Christa McAuliffe, Greg Jarvis, and Judy Resnik. In the front row from left to right: Michael J. Smith, Dick Scobee, and Ron McNair.  Image from the NASA Human Space Flight Gallery.



  1. Review the Eligibility Requirements. Because this is a federally funded program, these are strict requirements.
  2. Submit all of the following:
    1. A completed CWU McNair Scholars Program application; click to download and print a paper application
    2. If you have attended another college or university besides CWU, provide a copy of your transcripts from that institution (unofficial is okay) in Word or pdf format (we will access your CWU records);
    3. A copy of your most recently filed tax return with the SSN blacked out, or your parent(s)'s most recently filed tax return if you are claimed as a dependent by your parent(s). OR A copy of your most recent Student Aid Report (SAR) if you filed a FAFSA (Free Application for Federal Student Aid);
    4. A personal statement answering all questions asked; and
    5. Two recommendation letters. At least one recommendation letter must come from CWU faculty in your major and the second can come from an academic advisor who can attest to your scholarly potential. If you have questions or unusual circumstances, please contact the McNair office.) Transfer students, entering CWU as a Junior in the fall quarter may provide letters from faculty at their current institution. These letters should be mailed or emailed separately to the McNair office by the applicant's recommenders.
  • Faculty Recommendation Form as interactive - PDF or Word DOC
         Mail completed recommendation letters to:
         CWU McNair Office L&L Room 103A, Ellensburg, Washington 98926-7516
         CWU mailstop: 7516

PLEASE NOTE: Final acceptance into the McNair Program will depend on a review of your application materials and a personal interview with the Program Director and members of the McNair staff.

You may complete the online application and upload transcripts and current FAFSA Student Aid Report (SAR) or an IRS 1040 form (PLEASE remove all social security numbers from any tax forms you submit)  by clicking on the application above. Letters of recommendation from faculty must be mailed separately by the recommender.


Overview of Class Sequence for Students Participating in McNair Scholars Programs

First Year Second Year

Fall Quarter

Fall Quarter

  • MCNA 303: Finalizing Graduate Applications;
  • Continue or edit summer research for
    conference(s) and/or publication,
  • Take the GRE if not already taken,
  • Murdoch Conference or other conferences

Winter Quarter

  • MCNA 395: Undergraduate Research Methods;
  • Weekly meetings with your faculty mentor;
  • Prepare a substantive research proposal following the provided guidelines (to be completed by early February).

Winter Quarter

  • McNair Workshops on various topics.

Spring Quarter

  • MCNA 302: Finding (and Funding) Graduate Programs;
  • DHC 397: GRE Preparation (Douglas Honors College course);
  • Participate in the McNair End of the Year Recognition Banquet;
  • Volunteer at SOURCE;
  • Prepare for your paid summer research fellowship.

Spring Quarter

  • Present research at SOURCE,
  • Participate in McNair End of the Year Recognition Banquet,
  • Finalize graduate school plans,
  • Exit interview with McNair staff,
  • Honors Convocation.

Summer Quarter

  • GRE Review,
  • Summer Research Fellowship,
  • Graduate school visits,
  • Graduate School Ph.D. Prep Conference,
  • Finalize Graduate Funding & Grad School Program List,
  • Take the GRE if not already taken,
  • Prepare Summer Research Progress Report or abstract and review possible conference opportunities.



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