Fifteen undergraduate students from the University of Connecticut McNair Scholars program engaged with Northeastern University over Zoom to learn more about Northeastern’s Master’s and PhD programs. The students had the opportunity to speak with students, faculty, and staff representing various STEM disciplines including biology, computer science, mechanical & industrial engineering, chemical engineering, psychology, bioinformatics, biotechnology, cybersecurity, civil & environmental engineering, and marine & environmental sciences.
The McNair Scholars program is one of eight of the US Department of Education-funded TRIO programs. The program is named after Ronald E. McNair, a NASA astronaut and physicist who died in the Challenger disaster in 1986. Prior to his death, he was the second African American to fly in space when he flew as a mission specialist on STS-41-B in 1984. TRIO programs are open to low-income, first-generation undergraduate students, and individuals from underrepresented populations. At UConn, McNair Scholars have a faculty mentor, conduct and present research, and participate in workshops, seminars, and conferences to help them achieve an advanced degree.
The students were able to seek advice on the admissions process, interview weekend, research funding, life on campus and in Boston, and the University’s diversity initiatives and support systems. Unfortunately, due to the COVID-19 pandemic, students were unable to tour research facilities and the campus in person as previous cohorts of McNair Scholars have been able to do in the past, but Northeastern hopes to welcome McNair Scholars from UConn and across the country as visitors and incoming Master’s and PhD students in the future.