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The McNair Scholars Program at East Central University is receiving funding for five more years, it was recently announced.

The McNair Scholars Program, located on the ECU campus since 1991, prepares qualified undergraduates for entrance to doctoral degree programs in science and math. The goals of the program are to increase the number of first-generation, low-income and/or underrepresented students in doctoral degree programs, and ultimately, to diversify the faculty in colleges and universities across the country.

The federal program was established in memory of physicist and Challenger astronaut Dr. Ronald E. McNair. It is one of several TRIO programs, funded by the Department of Education, in supporting the academic achievement of students from groups traditionally underrepresented in higher education.

The ECU McNair Scholars Program provides undergraduates with opportunities to participate in academic year and summer research activities on campus with faculty members and at the EPA Environmental Research Laboratory with research scientists.

“It’s a good program. It has prepared me in interviews for graduate school and has helped with costs in attending research conferences,” said Brent Biddy, a junior from Seminole.

McNair Scholars attend courses, seminars and workshops on topics related to graduate school preparation; complete a research project; and have the opportunity to present their research at local, regional and national conferences.

“The ECU McNair Scholars Program was one of the first awarded in the nation in 1991. Since then, it has been exciting to play a small role in the lives of so many young people as they fulfill their educational dreams,” said McNair Scholars Program Director Pat Sutton.

For more information about the ECU McNair Scholar Program, contact Sutton

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