UF students, including incoming transfer students, who are U.S. citizens or permanent residents and meet the criteria below are encouraged to apply to the McNair Scholars Program.

Applicants must meet either one of the following criteria:

  • First-generation* college student of any race/ethnicity that also has a low family income level**, as established by the U.S. Department of Education; and/or
  • A member of a group that is underrepresented in graduate education, as defined in the Code of Federal Regulations, i.e. Alaska Native, American Indian, Black/African American, Hispanic, Native Hawaiian, or Native American Pacific Islanders

In addition to the criteria above, students must:

  • Have completed at least 60 credits prior to the summer 2021 semester (junior or senior standing)
  • Have a 3.0 minimum cumulative GPA
  • Plan to continue immediately to graduate school and persist to earn a PhD

The McNair Scholars Program is not open to students who only plan to pursue a Master's or professional degree (e.g. MD, JD, DVM, PharmD, PsyD, DNP, etc.)

*A first-generation college student means: (1) a student neither of whose natural or adoptive parents received a baccalaureate degree; or (2) a student who, prior to the age of 18, regularly resided with and received support from only one parent, and whose supporting parent did not receive a baccalaureate degree.; or (3) an individual who, prior to the age of 18, did not regularly reside with or receive support from a natural or an adoptive parent.

**The term low-income refers to an individual whose family's taxable income for the preceding year did not exceed 150 percent of the poverty level amount. Click here for current Federal TRIO Program low-income levels.

For more information on the laws, regulations and federal guidelines governing the McNair Scholars Program, visit:

When to Apply

New EXTENDED Deadline!

All application materials are due by 11:59 pm on Monday, February 15th, 2021.

Application Materials

New Online Application! 

McNair Scholars Program Application 2021

McNair Recommendation Form

A Complete Application Consists Of:

  • Completed application form with the following documents uploaded into the application:
    • Personal statement
    • Resume or CV
    • Documentation of eligibility, as applicable:
      • Copy of your permanent resident card or other documentation of permanent resident status
      • Copy of your 2020-2021 FAFSA Student Aid Report (SAR)
      • Copy of your or your parent(s)'/guardians(s)' 2019 Federal income tax return
  • Three recommendations (submitted directly by your references)

Personal Statement Guidelines

All applicants must upload a 500-word personal statement (1-inch margins, 12pt font, double-spaced) addressing the following:

  • Your interest in participating in the UF McNair Scholars Program 
  • Your motivation for pursuing a doctoral degree
  • Graduate program(s)/discipline(s) you are interested in and why
  • Your research interests and prior research experience, if applicable
  • Career goals (e.g. professor, researcher, etc.) and the contributions you wish to make to your field and community with a Ph.D.

*Include your name and UFID in the top-hand corner of each page.

Recommendation Guidelines

  • Each applicant must have THREE recommendations. 
  • TWO letters should come from faculty members (professors, associate professors, assistant professors, lecturers) who can best assess your academic work, research potential, and your motivation to attend graduate school. The third letter can come from a personal mentor, adviser, employer, or another supporter.
  • If you are a first-year transfer student, you may obtain recommendations from faculty members at your previous institution.