Application FAQs

1. I am a transfer student. Can I ask for letters of recommendation from instructors at my previous institution?
2. Can I get a letter of recommendation from an employer or an organization I volunteered for?
3. What happens if my letter of recommendation arrives past the deadline?
4. I am graduating soon. Am I still eligible to apply?
5. Do I need to have a Faculty mentor when I apply?
6. Am I still eligible if my GPA is below a 3.0?
7. Can I study abroad in the summer and still participate in the McNair Scholars Program?
8. Will I be allowed to work and/or take classes if necessary during the summer?
9. What does the timeline for participation in the McNair Program look like?
10. What if I am not completely sure about my research topic?




1. I am a transfer student. Can I ask for letters of recommendation from instructors at my previous institution?
Yes, this is acceptable if you cannot secure a strong letter or letters from Baylor faculty.

2. Can I get a letter of recommendation from an employer or an organization I volunteered for?
We strongly encourage that letters of recommendation come from academic faculty. Try to get one or both letters from this category. If not, try to get a non-faculty recommender that that can speak to your academic potential, motivation, curiosity, and fitness for graduate school.

3. What happens if my letter of recommendation arrives past the deadline?
Recommenders will receive an email with instructions on how to submit their letter of recommendation. Please encourage them to submit their letter within three weeks of receiving that email. It is the student's responsibility to ensure their letters of recommendation are submitted on time. Contact our office at McNair@baylor.edu if you know your recommender will not be able to meet the deadline.

4. I am graduating soon. Am I still eligible to apply?
In order to participate in the McNair Scholars Program, you must be enrolled in the Spring semester and available to do full-time research during the Summer. For example, seniors that apply in the fall and are accepted in the spring should be available to conduct research the subsequent summer. Seniors who are graduating in August and December should still apply.

5. Do I need to have a Faculty mentor when I apply?
No, we can work with you to find a faculty mentor if you are accepted into the program and do not already have a mentor. If you have already secured a mentor, please mention it in your application. A great resource for identifying potential faculty mentors in your field is to utilize the Baylor Eureka website: https://www.baylor.edu/engagedlearning/index.php?id=950291

6. Am I still eligible if my GPA is below a 3.0?
We are unfortunately unable to admit students with a GPA that is under a 3.0. If you are an eligible student in your Sophomore year at Baylor, we encourage you to work on raising your GPA and reapply during your Junior or Senior year.

7. Can I study abroad in the summer and still participate in the McNair Scholars Program?
No, you must be available to do research from June through early August. If your research requires you to travel, then you must be granted permission. Contact our office to discuss your situation and what options are available to you.

8. Will I be allowed to work and/or take classes if necessary during the summer?
It is recommended that you focus solely on your research during the summer. However, you may petition to work or take a class during the summer if necessary.

9. What does the timeline for participation in the McNair Program look like?
Generally, in the spring semester you will work on refining research proposals. During the summer, you will work one-on-one with your faculty mentor as you develop your research project. In the fall semester, you will present your research in our annual Symposium and apply to graduate school.

10. What if I am not completely sure about my research topic?
Describe it to the best of your ability for the application. Your topic may change once you are admitted into the program.

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