The cost of college continues to soar each year. Over the last 30 years, this cost has increased by up to to 500% — regardless of whether the school was public, private, a four-year or a two-year college. This is why it’s important to apply for scholarships and grants to help cover this ever-rising expense and to minimize your student loan debt after you graduate.
College scholarships and fellowships for math, science and engineering students are among the most generous and prestigious awards.
In addition to science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) scholarships, you can search for other scholarships using a free scholarship search service, such as Fastweb.com and the College Board’s Big Future. You can use these websites to find other STEM scholarships with more specific selection criteria, and will also allow you to find non-STEM scholarships that match your background.We’ve also gathered The Best College Scholarship Search Websites.
General Undergraduate STEM Scholarships
These scholarships are available to undergraduate students in all or most STEM fields. They are listed according to the amount of the top prize and with the most generous scholarships listed first.
- Regeneron Science Talent Search (STS): U.S. students enter a science or mathematics project in the “nation’s oldest and most prestigious STEM competition for high school seniors.” Winners are selected based on a scientific research report, answers to essay questions, admissions test scores, transcripts and recommendations. Three hundred semi-finalists win a $2,000 college scholarship. Forty finalists win at least a $25,000 college scholarship, with a top prize of a $250,000 college scholarship.
- Breakthrough Junior Challenge: Students worldwide, age 13-18, enter by creating a 90-second video to explain a complicated concept or theory in science or mathematics in an engaging and easy-to-understand way. The winner receives a $250,000 college scholarship, plus a $50,000 prize for their teacher, plus up to $100,000 to their school to add or renovate a science lab.
- Regeneron International Science and Engineering Fair (ISEF): Students worldwide can enter ISEF after winning a top prize in their local, state, regional or national science fair. Grand Awards in each of 21 ISEF categories provide cash prizes of up to $5,000 for a first award. First award winners can win named awards worth $10,000 to $75,000.
- Davidson Fellows Scholarships: Students who are 18 years old or younger can win $10,000, $25,000 or $50,000 college scholarships by completing a “significant piece of work” in science, technology, engineering, mathematics, literature, music, philosophy, or outside-the-box categories.
- U.S. Department of Defense STEM Scholarships: U.S. undergraduate and graduate students can win scholarships and fellowships in 21 academic majors in STEM fields. Scholarship recipients must agree to work for a Department of Defense (DoD) facility for one year for each year of support. The scholarships cover full tuition, an annual stipend of at least $25,000, 8 to 12 week summer internships, and employment with the DoD after graduation.
- Collegiate Inventors Competition: Students who have a patentable invention can compete for cash prizes of up to $15,000 and a patent acceleration certificate. This is open to U.S.-based and international undergraduate and graduate students at U.S. colleges and universities.
- Generation Google Scholarships: These scholarships and fellowships are available to U.S. and non-U.S. high school seniors, undergraduate and graduate students who are or will be majoring in computer science. The scholarships and fellowships are worth up to $10,000. Applicants should demonstrate financial need. Google also offers scholarships for students with disabilities and for veterans.
- Toshiba/NSTA ExploraVision: This competition is open to teams of two to four U.S. and Canadian elementary, middle and secondary school students interested in STEM fields. Winning teams receive a U.S. EE Savings Bond worth up to $10,000 at maturity.
- S.P.A.R.K.S. Foundation Scholarships: This $1,000 scholarship is available to high school seniors who will major in STEM fields and who demonstrate financial need.
Field Specific Undergraduate STEM Scholarships
These scholarships are limited to specific academic majors, highlighted in bold. They are listed in alphabetical order.
- American Meteorological Society (AMS) Scholarships and Fellowships: AMS provides several scholarships and fellowships for U.S. undergraduate and graduate students in atmospheric and oceanic sciences. These awards are worth up to $25,000.
- American Nuclear Society Scholarship Program: Scholarships are available to U.S. and non-U.S. high school seniors, undergraduate and graduate students who are or will be enrolled in nuclear science, nuclear engineering and related fields (e.g., environmental science, materials science, radioanalytical chemistry, thermal-hydraulics, reactor safety, etc.) at U.S. colleges and universities. The scholarships are worth up to $2,500 ($1,000 for incoming freshmen) and the fellowships are worth up to $5,000. There are also need-based scholarships worth up to $5,000.
- NIH Undergraduate Scholarship Program: U.S. students from economically disadvantaged backgrounds who are interested in careers in biomedical, behavioral and social science health-rated research can win college scholarships and paid summer research internships at the National Institutes of Health (NIH). They can also receive paid employment and training at the NIH after graduation. Scholarship recipients must have exceptional financial needs. The scholarships are worth up to $20,000 per year and can be renewed for up to four years. Scholarship recipients must participate in a 10-week research internship during the summer after each year of scholarship support. Scholarship recipients must work at an NIH research laboratory for one year for each year of support.
- NOAA Ernest F. Hollings Undergraduate Scholarship: U.S. college students who are interested in oceanic and atmospheric science, research, technology, and education can win college scholarships worth up to $9,500 per year for two years. Scholarship recipients must participate in a paid 10-week internship at a National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) facility.
- Novus Biologicals Scholarship Program: This scholarship is available to high school seniors, undergraduate and graduate students enrolled at colleges in the U.S., Canada, and Europe for study in science-related fields, such as biochemistry, biology, biomedical engineering, chemistry, environmental sciences, genetics, health sciences, life sciences, medical sciences, microbiology, neuroscience, nursing, nutrition, pathology, pharmaceutical sciences, physical therapy, psychology, social sciences, toxicology, veterinary medical sciences, and wildlife sciences. The scholarship is worth up to $1,500.
- SME Education Foundation Scholarships: U.S. and Canadian high school seniors and current college students can apply for several college scholarships in manufacturing engineering and related fields. Scholarships are worth up to $40,000 payable over four years.
- Society of Physics Students (SPS) Scholarships: This scholarship is available to undergraduate students who are majoring in physics. Some are available to students majoring in any STEM field. Membership in the Society of Physics Students or Sigma Pi Sigma is required. The scholarships are worth up to $5,000.
- Society of Women Engineers (SWE) Scholarships: This scholarship is available to female undergraduate and graduate students interested in engineering and computer science. The degree program must be ABET-accredited. The scholarships are worth up to $16,000.
- The American Rocketry Challenge (TARC): TARC is a rocketry competition open to U.S. middle and high school students. Finalists compete for $100,000 in prizes and college scholarships worth up to $20,000 for the winning teams.
- Thermo Fisher Scientific Antibody Scholarship Program: This scholarship is available to U.S. undergraduate and graduate students majoring in biology, chemistry, biochemistry, and related life sciences (excluding healthcare professions) at U.S. colleges and universities. The scholarship is worth up to $10,000.
- U.S. Stockholm Junior Water Prize: U.S. and non-U.S. high school students who have conducted a water-science research project are eligible for regional, state, national, and international awards. National awards include a $10,000 scholarship. International awards include a $15,000 scholarship.
- Universities Space Research Association (URSA) Scholarship Awards. This scholarship is available to U.S. undergraduate students who are interested in science or engineering with a focus on space research, space science education, and aeronautics. The scholarships are worth $5,000.
Undergraduate STEM Scholarships (Underrepresented Minority Students)
These scholarships are limited to underrepresented minority students and are limited to specific academic majors.
- American Chemical Society (ACS) Scholars Program: U.S. high school seniors and undergraduate students from underrepresented groups (African-American/Black, Hispanic/Latino, American Indian or Alaska Native, Native Hawaiian or Native Pacific Islander) can apply for scholarships in chemistry, biochemistry, chemical engineering, and related sciences (e.g., materials science, petroleum engineering, forensic science, toxicology, pharmaceutical chemistry, agricultural chemistry, nanotechnology, ceramic science, etc.) worth up to $5,000 per year.
- American Indian Science and Engineering Society (AISES) Scholarships: AISES provides several scholarships and fellowships for American Indian undergraduate and graduate students in STEM fields. The scholarships are worth up to $5,000 per year. The fellowships are worth up to $10,000 per year.
- National Action Council for Minorities in Engineering (NACME) Scholarships: Scholarships worth up to $5,000 are available to U.S. high school seniors and undergraduate students in engineering and computer science. Scholarship recipients must be underrepresented minority students (Black/African American, Latino/Hispanic-American, or Native/American Indian).
- Society of Hispanic Professional Engineers (SHPE) Scholarships: The ScholarSHPEs are available to Hispanic high school seniors, undergraduate, and graduate students interested in pursuing an undergraduate or graduate degree in STEM. There are several scholarship and fellowship programs, worth up to $25,000.
- National Society of Black Engineers (NSBE) Scholarships: These scholarships are available to Black high school seniors, undergraduate, and graduate students majoring in engineering, computer science, and related fields (e.g., physics). The scholarships are worth up to $10,000. Applicants must be student members of NSBE.
General Graduate STEM Fellowships
These fellowships are available for graduate school in all or most STEM fields. They are listed according to the amount of the top prize, with the most generous fellowships listed first.
A few fellowships are included in the listings of undergraduate scholarships because some are open to both undergraduate and graduate students. These include the American Indian Science and Engineering Society (AISES) Scholarships, American Meteorological Society (AMS) Scholarships and Fellowships, American Nuclear Society Scholarship Program, Generation Google Scholarships, Society of Hispanic Professional Engineers (SHPE) Scholarships, and the U.S. Department of Defense STEM Scholarships.
- Hertz Foundation Fellowships: This fellowship is available to U.S. college seniors and first-year graduate students who will pursue a Ph.D. in the applied physical and biological sciences, mathematics, or engineering. This fellowship provides up to five years of funding worth a total of $250,000 at 40 participating U.S. universities. Fellows must make a “moral commitment to put their skills to work in times of national emergency.”
- National Defense Science and Engineering Graduate (NDSEG) Fellowship. This fellowship is available to U.S. graduate students pursuing a Ph.D. in science and engineering. Eligible fields of study include aeronautical and astronautical engineering, biomedical engineering, chemical engineering, chemistry, civil engineering, cognitive, neural, and behavioral sciences, computer science, electrical engineering, geosciences, materials science and engineering, mathematics, mechanical engineering, ocean engineering, oceanography, physics, and space physics. The fellowship includes a monthly stipend worth up to $38,400 per year and full tuition and fees for three years. Additional funding is provided for health insurance and for travel for professional development.
- National Science Foundation (NSF) Graduate Research Fellowship Program: This fellowship is available to graduate students pursuing Master’s and Ph.D. degrees in STEM fields. The fellowship provides a $34,000 stipend and a $12,000 cost of education allowance annually for up to three years.
- National GEM Consortium Fellowships: This fellowship is available to underrepresented U.S. graduate students interested in Master’s and Ph.D. degrees in science and engineering. The fellowship provides a stipend of $16,000 and full tuition and fees for up to five years. The fellowship also provides paid summer internships with GEM employer members. Underrepresented students include African-American/Black, Hispanic-American/Latino, and American Indian/Native students.
Field Specific Graduate STEM Fellowships
These fellowships are limited to specific academic majors, highlighted in bold. They are listed in alphabetical order.
- American Geosciences Institute (AGI) Scholarship Programs: These fellowships are available to U.S. underrepresented students (BIPOC) and female students who are interested in pursuing a graduate degree in geoscience. They are worth $5,000.
- American Physical Society (APS) M. Hildred Blewett Fellowship: This fellowship is available to U.S. and Canadian female graduate students to help them return to physics research after an interruption. The fellowship is worth up to $45,000. The recipient must have completed work toward the Ph.D.
- American Statistical Association (ASA) Gertrude M. Cox Scholarship: This fellowship is available to U.S. and Canadian female graduate students in statistics. It is worth $1,000.
- DOE Computational Science Graduate Fellowship: This fellowship is available to U.S. graduate students in fields that “use high-performance computing to solve complex science and engineering problems.” The fellowship provides an annual stipend of $36,000 plus tuition and fees for up to four years of support. Fellowship recipients participate in 12-week practicum experiences at one of 21 DOE national laboratories, including access to DOE supercomputers. Students must be college seniors or first-year graduate students at the time of application. Eligible fields of study include applied mathematics, statistics, astrophysics, chemical engineering, chemistry, computer science, environmental science, life sciences, machine learning, materials science, mechanical engineering, and physics.
- Microsoft Research Dissertation Grant Program: This fellowship is available to underrepresented graduate students in computer science, economics, ecology & environment, mathematics, genomics, and social sciences Ph.D. programs at universities in the U.S. and Canada. The fellowship is worth up to $25,000. The proposed research must be aligned to the general areas of research conducted by members of Microsoft Research.
- Microsoft Research PhD Fellowship Program: This fellowship is available to U.S. and non-U.S. graduate students in Ph.D. programs in computer science. It is worth up to $42,000 per year for the third and fourth years of the Ph.D. program. Applicants must be nominated by the university.
- NOAA Dr. Nancy Foster Scholarship Program: This fellowship is available to U.S. graduate students in Master’s degree and Ph.D. programs at U.S. colleges and universities in oceanography, marine biology, and maritime archaeology. The fellowships are awarded in part based on the applicant’s demonstrated financial need.
- Winston Churchill Foundation of the USA Scholarship Program: This scholarship is available to U.S. undergraduate students who are interested in pursuing a Master’s degree at the University of Cambridge in science, mathematics, and engineering. The scholarship covers the cost of one year, which is generally a MPhil or MASt degree.
- Woodrow Wilson Teaching Fellowship: This fellowship is for U.S. college seniors who are interested in pursuing a Master’s degree in science or mathematics education at the University of Pennsylvania or West Chester University. The fellowship provides a $32,000 stipend. Fellowship recipients must commit to teaching in high-need secondary schools in Pennsylvania for at least three years.
Learn more about how you can apply for student loans and financial aid programs by state or find grants to help you pay for college.
Mark Kantrowitz is an expert on student financial aid, scholarships, 529 plans, and student loans. He has been quoted in more than 10,000 newspaper and magazine articles about college admissions and financial aid. Mark has written for the New York Times, Wall Street Journal, Washington Post, Reuters, U.S. News & World Report, MarketWatch, Money Magazine, Forbes, Newsweek, and Time. You can find his work on Student Aid Policy here.
Mark is the author of five bestselling books about scholarships and financial aid and holds seven patents. Mark serves on the editorial board of the Journal of Student Financial Aid, the editorial advisory board of Bottom Line/Personal, and is a member of the board of trustees of the Center for Excellence in Education. He previously served as a member of the board of directors of the National Scholarship Providers Association. Mark has two Bachelor’s degrees in mathematics and philosophy from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) and a Master’s degree in computer science from Carnegie Mellon University (CMU).
Editor: Claire Tak Reviewed by: Robert Farrington