The McNair Scholars Signing Day took place Friday, April 10, 2018 celebrating the accomplishments of 11 graduating scholars, who revealed plans for their graduate education. The scholars shared their appreciation for the McNair Scholars program, a federal TRiO program that prepares both first-generation students with financial needs or members of underrepresented groups for doctoral studies. With thankful words for their friends, family and faculty mentors, large smiles and an occasional tear, all 11 scholars filled the room with overwhelming gratitude.
Perry Fittrer, Associate Director for the McNair Scholars program, called each scholar to the front of the room where they sat at a table to announce their graduate school. Colleges included University of California, Davis; University of California, Berkeley; Stanford University and more. In addition to their acceptance into prestigious higher education institutions, many were also granted full-ride scholarships and other compensation. This way, the scholars can attend their dream graduate school with affordability.
"Honestly, McNair was life changing," Trisden Shaw, a McNair scholar who will be attending University of California, Los Angeles for a Master's of Art in African American Studies on a full scholarship, said. "It gave me opportunities I never could have dreamed of. To me, it's what social justice can and should look like. It leveled the playing field and gave me a chance to shine, and I'll be forever grateful for that."
With the scholars making a stride in their educational goals, Fittrer announced his sincerest admiration for the scholars' accomplishments.
"We are thrilled to celebrate our amazing scholars," Fittrer said. "Through their efforts, and from the support of our program, we are changing the pipeline of students who are pursuing graduate education and research-based careers. I hope the accomplishments of these scholars inspires other undergraduates to know that not only is graduate school attainable, but also that they belong there."
The McNair Scholars program offers undergraduate students the chance to pursue research in their chosen field, create everlasting bonds with their peers and mentors within the program and pave the path for their graduate education goals.
Students interested in the McNair Program are encouraged to apply at unr.edu/mcnair by October 1, 2018.