Scholarships for Women

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Are There Scholarships for Women?

There are a wide range of scholarships for women at all levels of study and all ages. Whether you are in high school, or ready to pursue a bachelors or graduate degree.

Some such scholarships are for minority women. Other scholarships may target a specific field to incentivize women to study it. For example, there are scholarships for women in STEM, business, nursing, and beyond.

Yet others are set aside for residents of a certain state or applicants to specific schools. You'll also find scholarships if you are a woman serving in the army (or the child of a military mom).

The Army Women’s Foundation Legacy Scholarship is a prime example. Applicants must be a woman who has served or is serving honorably in the U.S. Army, U.S. Army Reserve, Army National Guard. Or be the child of a woman who served honorably in the one of these branches.

Male Vs. Female Scholarships

Unless a scholarship has criteria that say otherwise, both men and women might apply. But some providers want to award aid for women and girls only. Female scholarships thus restrict applicants to persons who identify with the female gender.

To get this kind of financial help, you'll thus go up against competitors that are other females. Though there may be other rules about eligibility. This might include showing financial need, a specific GPA, SAT/ACT scores, or talent.

Nonetheless, scholarships are gift money and may help you get the education you seek. Without the need to pay the money back the way you do in a loan. You do need to respect the conditions of the scholarship so make sure to read what these are.

Types of Scholarships for Women and Girls

There are two kinds of scholarships that women might apply. One is need-based. The other, based on merit.

Need-based scholarships look at your family finances. They often go to recipients who cannot afford college. Merit-based scholarships reward strengths, grades and abilities.

Within these broad categories, there are scholarships for females of certain age ranges. Many providers also offer awards to help underserved groups of women. Or help women reach a specific degree level or career path.

We’ll walk you through a few to give you an idea of how to streamline your search for the perfect scholarships.

STEM scholarships for female students

There are a wide range of scholarships for women in science, technology, engineering and math. One recent study shows women account for smaller shares of the STEM workforce. Luckily this means there are many STEM scholarships that women can apply to.

The Brookhaven Women in Science (BWIS) Renate W. Chasman Scholarship is an example. It consists of a one-time $2,500 award. Applicants must be female graduate students at an accredited institution. They must also be performing STEM research at Brookhaven National Laboratory.

Since STEM comprises a few fields, there are lots of other options. One is the Alice T. Shafer Mathematics Prize. It goes to undergraduate women with strong math skills. If you prefer statistics though, try for the Gertrude M. Cox Scholarship.

You might also find scholarships through engineering associations. Like the Society for Women Engineers (SWE). They often pair with a certain university with ABET-accredited programs.

One example is the GE Women’s Network Scholarship at Carnegie Mellon University. Forty-three awards go to women who are active in engineering professional organizations. There’s also the Houzz Women in Architecture Scholarship. This one supports next-gen female architects and architectural engineers.

College scholarships for women

College-bound women have a range of scholarships to choose from. It is a good idea to consider your career and study goals. This is because many providers want to pave the way for women to succeed in their industry.

Take the Women in Public Finance Scholarship. It is for high school senior girls heading to college. Applicants need to have an interest in pursuing a public finance related career in finance, government, nonprofits or law.

Scholarships for female grad students

There are many scholarships for female graduate students. It all depends what you want to study. Are you a business minded woman looking for an MBA scholarship? Wondering about law school scholarships for women? Use this to focus your search.

One to check out is the Jane M. Klausman (JMK) Women in Business Scholarship program. It helps women pursue undergraduate and master's degrees in business management.

Scholarships for women over 40 or 50

Many scholarships are for women who want to change or advance a career or re-enter the workforce. Scholarships for women over 40 make it possible to return to school. Without taking out huge loans.

One example is the Sophie Greenstadt Scholarship for Mid-life Women. It is for women age 35 and up living in the Greater Los Angeles area. You must also be entering or continuing a program to learn a marketable skill. One that will lead to economic self-sufficiency.

Another option might be the Jeannette Rankin Women’s Scholarship Fund. It provides scholarships for low-income women ages thirty-five and older across the nation. Their goal is to improve lives through post-secondary education.

Scholarships for female high school students

If you are a female high school student, there are scholarships available. Even if you don’t yet know what you will major in. One example is the 1,000 Dreams Scholarship Fund Recipients get money to pay for extra-curricular activities. Lessons, conferences and the like.

Another is the P.E.O. Star Scholarship. It goes to girls in their senior year of high school. You need an unweighted 3.0 GPA and leadership skills to apply.

What Makes Scholarships for Women Unique?

Scholarships may help women succeed in school and in their careers. One study found that women are 50% less likely to get help from their parents to finance their studies than men.

But women make up the majority of college and university students. At last check, there were 19.9 million students enrolled in the U.S. colleges and universities. Of these, women accounted for 11.2 million.

This isn’t always the case in the workforce. Women are still breaking ground in traditionally male dominated areas. In fact, in recent years only 47.0 percent of full-time wage and salary workers were women. The numbers shift depending on the field of employment.

The good news is women ages 25 to 64 in the labor force are more educated than in the past 45 years. In 2016, 42 percent of women held a bachelor’s degree and higher, compared with 11 percent in 1970.

Many scholarship providers recognize these trends. They want to help women fulfill their dreams. For instance, there are many scholarships for women in computer science. Another area that women are breaking ground in.

Here’s a perfect example - the Women Techmakers Scholars Program. Offered through Google, the scholarship is in honor of Dr. Anita Borg. She spent her life trying to break down barriers. Ones that keep women and minorities from pursuing a tech-focused career.

A Peek at Women in the Workforce

Career Path Percentage of Women Employed
Life, physical, and social science occupations 42.0%
Computer and mathematical occupations 25.2%
Architecture and engineering occupations 14.0%
Management 52.0%
Software developers 20.0%
Chief executives 27.0%
Elementary and middle school teachers 79.0%
Registered nurses 90.0%
Physicians and surgeons 38.0%
Accountants and auditors 61.0%

Top Scholarships for Women

Scholarships often provide a leg up for women at various stages of life and education. Whether you want to pursue a college degree after high school. Or return to college after a break. Check out these top scholarships set aside for women and girls.

Loreen Arbus Foundation & AWMF Scholarship

This journalist scholarship program consists of one $2,500 scholarship, made payable directly to the winning student’s educational institute. The winning applicant is invited to attend AWMF’s Gracie Awards Luncheon June 24, 2020, in New York City to receive the scholarship in person. The scholarship is open to female undergraduate and graduate students studying media, journalism, English, communications and related fields enrolled in the 2020-2021 school year. The deadline is to be announced.

Total: $2500 Awards:  1
Deadline: 

Jill Pomroy Reed Women in Marketing Scholarship

The Jill Pomroy Reed Scholarship is available to women who are planning a career in marketing in the plumbing, HVAC or electrical industries.

Total: $2000 Awards:  1
Deadline:  August 01

Patsy Takemoto Mink Education Foundation Scholarship

This award is for U.S. women 17 years of age or older, with minor children that planned to be enrolled in a skills training, ESL, or GED program; or pursuing a technical/vocational degree, an associate's degree, a first bachelor's degree, or a professional/master's/doctoral degree. Applicants must be of low-income with an annual family income less than $17,500 for a family of 2; $22,000 for a family of 3; $26,500 for a family of 4.

Total: $5000 Awards:  5
Deadline:  August 01

Network 2000 Scholarship

This scholarship is available for Maryland women who are pursuing graduate studies at an accredited university in the U.S. Applicants must have a grade point average of 3.0 or higher to be considered competitive during award selection.

Total: $2500 Awards:  1
Deadline:  February 02

Society of Professional Women in Petroleum Scholarship Program

This scholarship is open to female high school seniors who attend Houston (TX)-area high schools and plan to attend a Texas college or university. Students must be U.S. citizens or permanent residents, and must be available to attend an in-person interview in Houston if selected as a finalist.

Total: $10000 Awards:  15
Deadline:  February 04

AAAE Foundation Scholarship for Women in Aviation

This scholarship is open to U.S. female college juniors and seniors who are enrolled in an aviation program and have a grade point average of 3.0 or higher. Financial need, participation in school and community activities, and work experience are all considered in the selection process.

Total: $5000 Awards:  1
Deadline:  February 28

Women's Italian Club of Boston Scholarship

This award is available for Massachusetts women of Italian heritage.

Total: $1000 Awards:  3
Deadline:  March 01

Boston City Federation Scholarship for Women Returning to School

This award is available to women from Massachusetts who are returning to college as a non-traditional student.

Total: $500 Awards:  1
Deadline:  March 01

GFWCM Memorial Education Fellowship Fund for Education

Graduate students in the United States who have been residents of Massachusetts for five or more years are eligible for this award. Students must be majoring in education.

Total: $500 Awards:  1
Deadline:  March 01

Cargill Global Scholars Program for U.S. Students

U.S. first- and second-year college students who are attending select universities and demonstrate high academic achievement are eligible for this award.

Total: $2500 Awards:  10
Deadline:  March 01

Adore Me Scholarship

This award is available for U.S. women who are majoring in business. Applicants must have a grade point average of 3.0 or higher.

Total: $1000 Awards:  2
Deadline:  March 01

Nancy Lorraine Jensen Memorial Scholarship Fund

U.S. female undergraduate students between the ages of 17 and 35 who are majoring in chemistry, physics, or chemical, electrical, or mechanical engineering are eligible for this award. Each student must be a member or the daughter or granddaughter of a member of the Sons of Norway; such membership must have been of three or more years in duration on the date the application is submitted.

Total: $5000 Awards:  3
Deadline:  March 01