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McNair Graduate Research Fellows are outstanding undergraduate McNair Research Scholars who are accepted into a doctoral or master’s program at Oklahoma State University. The McNair Graduate Research Fellowship is designed to encourage underrepresented student populations to complete a Ph.D. or masters degree. The fellowship is offered to outstanding first-generation, low-income, or minority college graduates with the intent of increasing the pool of underrepresented students pursuing advanced training and establishing role models for future minority students. Fellows have the opportunity to serve as a mentor to undergraduate McNair Scholars at Oklahoma State University.



  • McNair Graduate Fellows Requirements
    • Any applicants wanting to be accepted for the McNair Graduate Fellowship program will need to have graduated with their undergraduate degree no longer than five years prior to that start of their graduate studies as a fellow.
    • You may not receive McNair funds on a second Master’s or second PhD degree, even if you attended a different university. McNair Graduate Fellowship funds are for students obtaining their first graduate degree or Master’s degree with immediate progression to an associated doctoral degree in progression. If your received a Master’s degree from another university and would then like to apply for a PhD degree, you can be reviewed for acceptance into the program. If you have received a Master’s degree from another university and then would like to pursue a Master’s at Oklahoma State University, you would not be eligible for McNair Graduate Fellowship status.
    • A letter of good standing form your undergraduate McNair program is required to be uploaded to the application for admission to graduate studies. When the good standing/participation letter is submitted, an application fee waiver can be issued.
    • Application to be accepted to a Graduate College Fellowship program must be made at the time of initial application for the first graduate degree at OSU.
    • Acceptance into the McNair program is competitive and not guaranteed.
    • Students are required to be admitted without qualification to a Master’s or PhD degree seeking program. Students admitted to graduate certificate programs or who are admitted on probation or provisionally are not eligible.
    • A residential graduate program, meaning a program offered on either Stillwater, Tulsa, or CHS campuses is required. McNair Graduate Fellow applicants may not be in a distance-learning program.
    • For students accepted to the McNair Graduate Fellows program, a meeting with a Graduate College academic advisor is required once each semester in order to show degree progression and answer program or academic questions the student may have. Fellows not maintaining good academic standing or making expected progress to earning their degree will be dismissed from the program.
    • Professional development is required by all McNair Fellows each semester and reported through 360° Critical Skills for Career Success.
    • Tuition waivers are limited to graduate degree program credit hours required by the Oklahoma State regents for Higher Education to earn the degree sought. In order to receive a tuition waiver, a McNair Graduate Fellow must be enrolled full time. If you have an assistantship for the current semester, a Fellow would need to be enrolled in at least 6 graduate credit hours in order to be tuition waiver eligible. If a Fellow does not have an assistantship for the current semester, enrollment of 9 graduate credit hours is required.
    • Honor cords for commencement ceremony are available for those fellows completing their degree and meeting all requirements.
  • McNair Graduate Fellows Benefits
    • Travel funds are available for professional development activities, poster presentations, conferences, collection of research data, etc.
      • Travel reimbursement of funds up to a maximum of $500
      • Reimbursement can be used once per trip
      • Reimbursement can be used once per semester
      • Reimbursement can be used three times during the fellow’s degree studies. You will need to fill out the form in the following link.
    • McNair Graduate Fellows, if accepted, receive a tuition waiver based on this title. No other tuition waivers may apply. MGF students who have a graduate teaching or research assistantship, the GSSI tuition waiver applies. If the student is a full time employee on campus, the faculty/staff tuition waiver would apply. The student would not be eligible for a McNair Graduate Fellowship tuition waiver. However, a student maintaining their good standing in the McNair Graduate Fellowship program is eligible for a tuition waiver in subsequent semesters, if their assistantship or faculty/staff position is not renewed.
  •  How to Apply to the McNair Graduate Fellows Program
    McNair fellows applying for graduate programs at Oklahoma State University are eligible to receive application fee waivers. A letter of good standing from your undergraduate McNair director must be uploaded to your OSU graduate application prior to submitting as directed below.
    • Start and complete your OSU application here
    • On our application please identify that you are an undergraduate McNair.
    • Save your director signed letter in pdf, .doc, .docx, .rtf, or .txt format.
    • Once your eligibility for the former McNair Scholar application fee waiver is confirmed and you are admitted to a qualifying OSU graduate program, you will be automatically reviewed for eligibility for the OSU McNair Graduate Fellowship Program.
    • The McNair Graduate Fellowship is a competitive program and applying early for your preferred graduate program is strongly recommended.
    • If you are selected for a Fellowship offer, you will be contacted by the OSU Graduate College.


Ronald McNair 

Astronaut, Physicist (1950–1986)

Ronald E McNair

Born in South Carolina in 1950, Ronald became an MIT-trained physicist who specialized in laser research before joining NASA in the late 1970s. In February 1984, he became just the second African American to reach space, serving as a mission specialist aboard the Space Shuttle Challenger.





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