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The Ronald E. McNair Postbaccalaureate Scholars Program

Participant eligibility is limited to students meeting all of the following requirements:


  • Must have a desire to attain a Ph.D. (Research Doctorate). Please note that an MD or other professional degrees (JD, MBA, PharmD, etc.) are not eligible for the program.


  • Must be a low-income student (please see table below) who is also a first-generation college student (neither parent nor legal guardian has a Bachelor’s degree);


be a member of a group that is underrepresented in graduate education. These groups are defined for all McNair Programs as follow:

Ethnic and racial groups are considered underrepresented in graduate education: Black (non-Hispanic), Hispanic, American Indian, Alaskan Native (as defined in section 7306 of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act of 1965, as amended by the ESEA), Native Hawaiians (as defined in section 7207 of the ESEA), and Native American Pacific Islanders (as defined in section 320 of the HEA).


  • Must be a U.S. citizen or permanent resident
  • Must have minimum overall GPA of 3.0
  • Must be an enrolled as a full-time undergraduate student at WSU Pullman
  • Must have at least four semesters left before graduation (The program takes a minimum of four semesters to complete)


Apply online here.  



What is considered low-income?

  • A low-income individual means an individual whose family’s taxable income did not exceed 150 percent of the poverty level in the calendar year preceding the the year in which the individual participates in the project. Poverty level income is determined by using criteria of poverty established by the Bureau of the Census of the U.S. Department of Commerce.
  • Federal TRIO Programs Current-Year Low-Income Levels (Effective January 31, 2017 until further notice)

Size of Family Unit

48 Contiguous States,
D.C., and Outlying Jurisdictions



































For family units with more than eight members, add the following amount for each additional family member: $6,270 for the 48 contiguous states, the District of Columbia and outlying jurisdictions; $7,845 for Alaska; and $7,215 for Hawaii.

The figures shown under family income represent amounts equal to 150 percent of the family income levels established by the Census Bureau for determining poverty status. The poverty guidelines were published by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services in the Federal Register on January 22, 2015.

The 2019-2020 Cohort Application are open February 1 – March 22.

Questions about the application process?

Click here for our application FAQ page that may assist you with the application process.

We are happy to answer any questions or address concerns.  Please call the McNair offices at 509-335-5847 or email our McNair Graduate Assistant at for further assistance.

For more information about the McNair program, Click Here for our program FAQ page.