Eligibility & Application

Pursuing your PhD begins here.

A group of people standing next to large steps, in the winter.

If you are an eligible undergraduate who is interested in pursuing a PhD, we encourage you to explore our program. McNair Scholars have access to workshops, research internships, faculty mentorship, leadership opportunities, funding and more that make all the difference as you advance through your education.

Eligibility Requirements & Criteria

Applicants must be either low-income and first-generation students, or belong to a population that is historically underrepresented in graduate education. Currently, the U.S. Department of Education has designated the following groups as underrepresented for the purposes of the McNair Scholars Program eligibility: African American/Black, Hispanic, American Indian/Alaska Native, Native Hawaiians and other Pacific Islanders (with an affiliation with the United States). Additionally, students must:

  • Be a U.S. citizen or permanent resident.
  • Have a 3.0 or greater GPA.
  • Commit to attending graduate school and earning a PhD.
  • Have sophomore or junior standing at UB. (Seniors are accepted on a limited basis.)

Remember: PhDs are not just for science students — the McNair program is open to eligible undergraduate students from many disciplines. If your field of study leads to a PhD or EdD, we want to work with you!