Skip to main content
MenuSearch & Directory

Gateway to McNair Scholars Program

The Gateway to McNair Scholars Program launched during the Spring 2019 semester and serves as a pipeline to the Saint Louis University McNair Scholars Program by expanding the pool of qualified applicants.

Eligible first-year students, as well as those who have been waitlisted for SLU McNair due to space limitation, receive access to mentorship from current graduate students and McNair Scholars. They also receive education on the steps to Ph.D. attainment and attend select workshops with current McNair Scholars. There are numerous benefits to becoming a Gateway Scholar, including:

  • The opportunity to learn more about the  McNair Scholars Program and how to excel as a McNair Scholar.
  • Having a mentor who is currently in graduate school and can share their experiences and tips for success.
  • Being able to get to know current McNair Scholars and members of the SLU McNair staff.
  • Receiving priority consideration for admittance to the McNair Scholars Program upon successful completion of the Gateway Program.
  • Getting assistance with the development of a research proposal that can be used in the future to apply for a McNair Summer Research Internship. 
2019 McNair Scholars

SLU’s Gateway to McNair Program provided me with the resources to ensure that I was ready for my transition into the McNair Scholars Program. It helped me prepare for the expectations of participation in the McNair Scholars Program and its associated activities, as well as my application to the McNair summer internship.”

Noah Gistover (Doisy '20), former Gateway Scholar and McNair Scholar

About the Gateway to McNair Scholars Program

The Gateway to McNair Scholars Program at SLU serves up to 10 students annually during the fall and spring semesters. Candidates whose academic and professional goals, research interests, GPA and status as first-generation, Pell-eligible and/or underrepresented students are in alignment with the requirements to become a McNair Scholar have the greatest chance of being selected for this opportunity.  Once admitted to Gateway, a student will participate for either a semester or full academic year, depending on their academic standing, successful completion of the program and readiness for entry to the McNair Scholars Program. As the McNair Scholars Program can only serve 25 participants per year, space availability may also play a role in when a Gateway Scholar can transition into the McNair Scholars Program.

Download an Application for Gateway Scholars

Eligibility Requirements

The ideal candidate for the Gateway to McNair Scholars Program will possess the following:

  • A genuine interest in pursuing graduate study immediately following their undergraduate career.
  • Intellectual curiosity and a desire for research experience.
  • Status as a first-generation college student with demonstrated financial need as outlined by the U.S. Department of Education or a member of a group that is underrepresented in graduation education: American Indian, Alaskan Native, Black (Non-Hispanic) or African-American, Hispanic or Latino, Native Hawaiian or other Pacific Islander. 
  • U.S. citizenship or permanent resident status.
  • Evidence of academic ability and achievement.

Priority consideration will be given to first-generation, low-income candidates who show promise as future McNair Scholars and have a strong interest in graduate study.

For more information, e-mail or