This news release describes past events and should be used for historical purposes only. Please note date of release.
UW-Eau Claire News Bureau
Schofield Hall 218
Eau Claire, WI 54702-4004
UW-Eau Claire Receives $780,000 Grant
To Help Students Prepare for Graduate School
phone (715) 836-4741
fax (715) 836-2900

MAILED: July 19, 1999

EAU CLAIRE — The University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire will provide 20 students with undergraduate research experiences and other support to help prepare them for graduate school, thanks to a $780,000 grant from the U.S. Department of Education.
The Robert E. McNair Post-Baccalaureate Achievement TRIO grant program is designed to encourage people from families with annual incomes below $24,000 and minority undergraduates to consider careers in college teaching, as well as help prepare them for doctoral study, said Joseph Hisrich, associate director of Academic and Career Services.
"The McNair grant seems to be an ideal fit with the mission of UW-Eau Claire and with UW-Eau Claire's designation by the (UW System) Regents as a Center of Excellence for Undergraduate Faculty/Student Collaborative Research," Hisrich said.
U.S. Rep. Ron Kind's congressional office staff notified UW-Eau Claire that it has been awarded the grant in the amount of $190,000 annually for four years. If the program is successful, the university can re-apply for additional funding. UW-Eau Claire is one of about a dozen new programs nationally that the U.S. Department of Education will fund.
Named in honor of the astronaut who died in the 1986 space shuttle explosion, the grant will provide student participants with research opportunities and faculty mentors. The grant dollars will pay student stipends, faculty stipends and will provide funding for supplies and services needed as part of research projects. In addition, the program will provide students with help in completing applications for graduate school, preparing for graduate school entrance exams and in lining up financial support for graduate education.
The program will begin Oct. 1 and, when fully implemented, will support 20 McNair scholars. Two-thirds of the student scholars must be from low-income households where neither parent has graduated from college. The remaining one-third can be students from backgrounds that are underrepresented in doctoral programs.
Patricia Quinn and Hisrich wrote the McNair grant proposal, and numerous UW-Eau Claire department chairs wrote letters of support citing the university's commitment to undergraduate faculty/staff collaborative research and the success of UW-Eau Claire graduates in gaining admission to graduate programs nationally.
The selection process for the McNair grant was extremely competitive, Hisrich said, noting that powerful graduate institutions such as the University of California-Los Angeles were in the running for the dozen new McNair programs.
"Given the level of competition, we're all the more pleased to have been selected," Hisrich said. "Again, the program and UW-Eau Claire are an ideal match."

UWEC [Administrative Offices] [News Bureau]

Janice B. Wisner
UW-Eau Claire News Bureau
Schofield 218
(715) 836-4741

Updated: July 19, 1999