The McNair Student Achievement ProgramThe University of Hawaii at Manoa

Welcome to the McNair Student Achievement Program

The McNair Student Achievement Program prepares selected University of Hawai'i at Mānoa undergraduates to pursue doctoral study. McNair students come from disadvantaged backgrounds and demonstrate strong commitment to academic excellence in science, technology, engineering and math. A cohort of McNair participants each year receives personalized faculty mentoring and other academic services in a culturally and socially supportive environment. As McNair students immerse themselves in research and other scholarly projects, college becomes not only a path to a Ph.D. degree but a stepping stone to making a vital contribution to their respective communities.

McNair legacy at UH Mānoa

The U.S. Department of Education provides funding for the McNair Student Achievement Program as part of a federal initiative known as TRiO. Congress named the program for the late Dr. Ronald E. McNair, the eminent African-American physicist and NASA astronaut who perished in the launch of the Challenger Space Shuttle. In 2009, the UH Office of Student Equity, Excellence and Diversity (SEED) received a federal grant to establish the McNair Student Achievement Program at the UH Mānoa campus. SEED perpetuates the McNair legacy of outstanding scholarship by providing services, leadership and advocacy for program participants.

  • McNair scholars gather in Mānoa for summer orientation
  • Jennalynn Paragoso presents research results at the McNair showcase
  • Honolulu’s Martin Luther King, Jr. parade draws McNair participants
  • Nong Dang in the microbiology lab during his McNair research internship
  • McNair scholars meet eminent visitors Carl McNair and Claude Onizuka
  • McNair's Laurel Pikcunas talks horticulture with Professor Kaufman
  • McNair students arrive in San Diego for a diversity conference
  • Engineering Professor Ohta mentors scholars Liang and Pham
  • Scholars at the McNair Heartland Conference, Kansas City, MO
  • Ann Dang, McNair Scholar, studying molecular reactions in chemistry lab
  • A McNair retreat unfolds amid North Shore mountains
  • Tyler Daguay tending to corn crops during his McNair internship

McNair at a glance

  • Enhances chances of doctoral degree attainment by groups underrepresented in higher education
  • Provides targeted support for studies in the disciplines of science, technology, engineering and math
  • Supports college juniors and seniors committed to completing doctoral degrees within ten years of finishing undergraduate studies
  • Assists students in developing research and presentation skills necessary for success in post-graduate study
  • Provides faculty mentors to help students complete scholarly research projects
  • Coordinates an intensive summer internship program and provides a $2800 stipend to each participant
  • Offers workshops, seminars, academic courses and other personalized services to help students qualify for admission to quality graduate programs
  • Promotes awareness of cultural diversity by involving students in service learning projects