The TRiO Ronald E. McNair Post-Baccalaureate Achievement Program, known at USD as the McNair Scholars Program is funded by the U.S. Department of Education. This program identifies and prepares high-achieving USD undergraduates for graduate studies by providing research training and early scholarly experiences. The program is named in honor of deceased NASA astronaut, Dr. Ronald. E. McNair.

McNair Scholars are exposed to research training and scholarly experiences throughout the year and have opportunities to present their research at national academic conferences. In addition, they are eligible to participate in the McNair Summer Research Program. As Summer Research Interns, they conduct an 8-10 week research project, attend a graduate school boot camp, produce a scholarly essay on their findings, and present their work at a minimum of two academic conferences.