POSTED: Tuesday, September 25, 2012 - 9:30am
UPDATED: Tuesday, September 25, 2012 - 9:34am
BATON ROUGE, LA — The U.S. Department of Education has awarded LSU a $1.35 million, five-year grant through the Ronald E. McNair Research Scholars Program, a program that promotes doctoral studies for first-generation college students, students who are from a background of financial need, and students from ethnic groups underrepresented in graduate education.
Joseph R. Givens, director of LSU University College’s Ronald E. McNair Research Scholars Program and principle investigator for the grant, noted, “Because of the overwhelming support of the faculty and staff at LSU, McNair Research Scholars will continue to grow into what I hope will be a model for postbaccalaureate preparation programs across the country. Our new, five-year grant is more ambitious with a greater focus on Ph.D. completion and initiatives to recruit and to serve more LSU students from science, technology, engineering and mathematics fields.”
The grant was awarded to LSU University College, which administers the Ronald E. McNair Research Scholars Program. The funds will provide an additional five years of offering the McNair Research Scholars Program, which has been providing support to LSU students for more than 20 years.
“University College and LSU are truly fortunate to have received this five-year grant to continue the 20 year history of the McNair Research Scholars Program on this campus,” said Paul Ivey, executive director of LSU University College. “This renewal by the U.S. Department of Education is a testimony to the success of this program at LSU over the years. Joseph Givens and the McNair Research Scholars staff will continue their dedicated efforts to prepare our first-generation and underrepresented students for eventual doctoral studies.”
LSU University College’s Ronald E. McNair Research Scholars will utilize the funds to provide undergraduate research opportunities, graduate school preparation activities, writing activities, academic counseling and professional development workshops in order to aid baccalaureate attainment and boost graduate school success for the targeted student groups.
“I see McNair Research Scholars as essential to the LSU 2020 Flagship Agenda of ‘transforming lives,’ Givens said. “I am fortunate to work with a program with a 20-year history of success at LSU. I not only get to see the impact on LSU students day-to-day, but I also have the opportunity to witness the lasting impact through our alumni who are now professors, scientists and community leaders.”
McNair Research Scholars is funded through the Department of Education TRIO Programs, which are grants made available to colleges and other nonprofits for the purpose of increasing postsecondary educational opportunities. LSU has three TRIO Programs – McNair, Upward Bound and Student Support Services – whose combined efforts bring more than $850,000 of annual federal funding for the purpose of supporting postsecondary education opportunities at LSU and in the Baton Rouge community.
Since 1933, LSU University College has served as the portal of entry for students enrolled at LSU. Academic and personal success is the hallmark of a well-rounded student, and University College provides a foundation of support services for students beginning their academic careers at LSU. University College has two enrollment divisions: The Center for Freshman Year and The Center for Advising and Counseling. Additionally, University College offers retention-specific programs: Student Support Serves, Ronald E. McNair Research Scholars, and Summer Scholars. These academic support programs focus on particular student populations and are a significant part of the role and mission of University College.