McNair Grant Launches Students Toward PhD Studies

Students conducting field research

SUNY Geneseo students conducting summer field research. (SUNY Geneseo photo/Keith Walters)

SUNY Geneseo has been selected to participate in the prestigious Ronald E. McNair Post-Baccalaureate Achievement Program. Funded by the U.S. Department of Education (ED), the aim of the McNair Program is to increase the numbers of low-income, first-generation, and historically underrepresented undergraduates who pursue Ph.D. degrees in a STEM or other fields. Diedre DeBose, director of Access Opportunity Programs, will serve as the McNair Scholars Program director.

“Our program will focus on providing support for McNair Scholars,” says DeBose. Geneseo’s McNair Program will encourage the pursuit of doctoral study by providing students with faculty mentors, summer research experiences, opportunities to present at professional conferences in their chosen fields, and more.

 Participants for Geneseo’s McNair Program will be recruited from SUNY Geneseo and Monroe Community College (MCC). McNair-eligible sophomores at Geneseo and transfer students from MCC will enter the program in the summer before their junior year, with exception to the program’s first-year cohort, which will be comprised of rising juniors and seniors. The ED grant of just over $230,000 a year, will support the College’s effort to prepare approximately 75 McNair Scholars for doctoral studies over the next five years.

The McNair Program is one of the U.S. government-supported TRiO programs and is named after and dedicated to Astronaut Ronald E. McNair who died in the 1986 Challenger space shuttle explosion. McNair earned his Ph.D. in physics from MIT. The program honors his achievements by enabling students to excel both academically and personally. The McNair Program has over 150 college and university partners.




Monique Patenaude, PhD
Director of Media Relations
(585) 245-5056