Scholarship Opportunities for Women

Last updated: April 23, 2019

In 1960, women made up almost 38 percent of the college enrollment. Today, female students outnumber their male counterparts (at 56 percent), and are projected to outpace male enrollment growth into 2026, according to the National Center for Education Statistics.

Since women represent over half of enrollment and the cost of higher education is at an all time high, the need for financial assistance is a familiar concept for millions. Fortunately there are thousands of scholarships and fellowships catered to women, so the cost of college shouldn’t deter anyone from earning an undergraduate or graduate degree.

To learn more about how you can pay for college, follow this guide and use our interactive tool to sort through the scholarship opportunities for women that you qualify for. But first, let’s not forget how far women have come since the 19th century beginning with the first coeducational college in the U.S., Oberlin College.

Evolution of Women & Education

Scholarships and student loans impact the success of American female leaders who have contributed to technological and medical advances, economic progress, the prosperity of our country and more. The former First Lady, Michelle Obama, partly attributes her success to the help of scholarships and financial aid, based on a speech given by former President Barack Obama:

“Michelle and I, we're only where we are today because scholarships and student loans gave us a shot at a great education. 
— Barack Obama, 44th U.S. President

It doesn’t matter who you are or where you came from, there are many opportunities available to help you pay for college—find the combination that works best for you.

 

How to Pay for College

1

Scholarships

There are hundreds of scholarships for women, which are awarded by local organizations, private companies, societies and more.

 
2

Grants

Grants don’t need to be paid back and are based on your financial circumstances. They are usually funded by the federal government, your state or college.

 
3

Fellowships

While scholarships usually fund tuition, fellowships typically cover graduate study, research projects and abroad experiences without needing to be paid back.

 
4

Student Loans

You can borrow money from the government or a bank, but it needs to be paid back with interest. The federal government offers many loan options—fill out the free application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) to see if you qualify for financial aid. If you need help, use our interactive guide to learn how to answer every question.

 
5

Federal Work-Study Program

Provides part-time jobs for undergraduate and graduate students with financial need, allowing them to earn money to pay education expenses.

 
 

If you’re just beginning the process of finding suitable scholarships, make sure you’re prepared for the application process by starting a folder with the assets below.

Scholarship Application Preparation

Not all scholarships are based off of your GPA, but most need to verify your high school education to qualify. Try to get certified copies of your transcript early, so you have plenty of time to meet the deadline.
Although there are scholarship opportunities that aren’t merit-based, it’s valuable to take the SAT or ACT standardized tests in case it’s a scholarship qualification.
Your scholarship essay is what will bring attention to your application out of the pool of applicants. That’s why it’s important to craft a stand out piece that attests to your experience, adheres to the scholarship guidelines and most importantly, highlights your true personality.
Letters of recommendation are a true judgement of your character—something that can’t be revealed through your test scores or transcript. Reach out to former teachers, counselors or bosses, so that they can speak to your qualifications. You may also want to provide them with a resume that outlines your achievements and goals as well.
 
Whether you’re the valedictorian or have earned average grades, there are hundreds of scholarships to choose from. Below are a few types of scholarships you can look for.

Scholarships for Women

Instructions: Click through the dropdowns below to sort by your intended major, award amount or if you’re looking for need-based aid. Click the box for a larger view.

Howard G. Buffett Fund For Women Journalists

Amount: Varies

Deadline: August 5, 2019

The Howard G. Buffett Fund for Women Journalists offers scholarship awards to aspiring women journalists. Application periods run twice per year. Current eligibility requirements can be found on the scholarship's website.

NLF Asian Pacific American Scholarship

Amount: Varies

Deadline: September 2, 2019

The Foundation awards scholarships on a nationwide basis to law students who demonstrate a commitment to serve or contribute to the Asian Pacific American community as future leaders.

Asian American Women's Alliance (AAWA) Scholarship

Amount: $500

Deadline: September 13, 2019

AAWA is proud to offer four (4) AAWA Scholarship Awards of $500 each to Asian American and Pacific Islander students.

Adobe Research Women In Technology Scholarship

Amount: $10,000

Deadline: September 27, 2019

Applicants must be female undergraduate students enrolled full-time at an accredited college or university and have at least one more year of undergraduate work to complete. Must maintain a strong academic record.

Alice T. Schafer Mathematics Scholarship

Amount: Varies

Deadline: October 1, 2019

Awards are given to current female undergraduate candidates who excel in mathematics and are pursuing a career in mathematics. Candidates can be freshmen, sophomores, juniors or seniors at the time of their application.

YoungArts

Amount: Varies

Deadline: October 11, 2019

YoungArts offers female aspiring artists in grades 10-12 the ability to grow their abilities through mentorships, national recognition and other opportunities related to the pursuit of a career in the arts.

Association for Women in Sports Media Scholarships

Amount: $1,000

Deadline: October 15, 2019

Scholarships are open to full-time female students who are pursuing a career in sports media. Eligible majors include public relations, writing, copy editing and broadcasting.

NSCA Women's Scholarship

Amount: $1,501

Deadline: October 15, 2019

This scholarship is designed to support women, ages 17 and older, to enter into the field of strength and conditioning. Applicants must demonstrate they have been accepted into an accredited institution and are working toward an undergraduate or graduate degree in the strength and conditioning field.

1,000 Dreams Scholarship

Amount: $1,000

Deadline: November 1, 2019

Qualified applicants are women currently attend high school or a two or four year college institution. Financial need must be demonstrated.

Aero Femme Scholarship

Amount: $500

Deadline: November 12, 2019

This scholarship provides opportunities for Women in Aviation International (WAI) members and help them reach their goals and advance them into the aviation and aerospace careers. The applicant must be 16 years old and member of WAI to be eligible for scholarship.

American Airlines Engineering Scholarship

Amount: $5,000

Deadline: November 12, 2019

If you want to pursue a degree in aeronautical, electrical, or mechanical engineering with a passion to work in the airline/aviation industry apply to American Airlines Engineering Scholarship. The applicant must be US citizen or permanent resident minimum 16 years old and member of WAI to be eligible for scholarship.

Live Your Dream Scholarship

Amount: $3,000-$10,000

Deadline: November 15, 2019

Female college students who provide primary financial support for themselves and their dependents are eligible to apply. Dependents can include children, spouse, partner, siblings and/or parents. Must demonstrate financial need and be enrolled in an undergraduate/vocational program for consideration.

Soroptimist Live Your Dream Awards

Amount: Varies

Deadline: November 15, 2019

This scholarship is for women who are the primary financial support for themselves and their dependents (see scholarship website for dependent qualifications). Applicants must be accepted to or currently enrolled in a skills training, vocational training or undergraduate degree program.

The Floyd Mayweather Jr. Foundation

Amount: $1,000

Deadline: November 17, 2019

Eligible students will be in their final three years of undergraduate schooling or first year of a graduate program. Candidates are women who have elected one of the following majors: Journalism, Communication Studies, Public Relations, Marketing, or Media Studies. Preference is given to sports or entertainment industry majors.

Kabis Memorial Internship

Amount: Varies

Deadline: December 1, 2019

Applicants for this internship at the National Federation of Republican Women headquarters must be at least a junior in college or a college student 21 years of age or older. Due to the nature of the internship, applicants should have a solid foundation of government knowledge with a keen interest in politics.

Dronethusiast $500 Women in Science UAV Scholarship

Amount: $500

Deadline: December 1, 2019

This scholarship is aimed at women pursuing science who demonstrate some form of financial need. In order for their application to be considered, students must submit a 1-2 page essay written in either Spanish or English.

Tobi Cares Scholarship

Amount: $3,000

Deadline: December 31, 2019

This $3,000 scholarship and $200 Tobi.com store credit are awarded to one outstanding recipient. Applicant must be a woman enrolling or enrolled as an undergraduate student in the US and must submit a complete application, including essay questions. For more information click "Apply" below.

Traub-Dicker Rainbow Scholarship

Amount: varies

Deadline: January 1, 2020

This scholarship is for LGBTQ women who are graduating high school seniors enrolled in a higher education institution, undergraduate and graduate students. Applicants must show their commitment to making the world a better place, have a history of academic excellence, and be involved in their communities.

Hawai'i Community Foundation Scholarships

Amount: Varies

Deadline: January 1, 2020

Hawaii Community Foundation is providing a wealth of financial support to qualified students throughout Hawaii. With over 250 scholarships, Hawaii students can surely find a scholarship that applies to them.

ANNpower Vital Voices Leadership Program

Amount: Varies

Deadline: January 1, 2020

Grants are available to 10th and 11th graders in the United States, Canada and Puerto Rico. The leadership fellowship allows young women to put their ideas into action.

Judy Wendland-Young College Scholarship

Amount: $20,000

Deadline: January 1, 2020

Applicants must be women 35 years old or older who have not previously attended an accredited university offering bachelor's degrees. Candidates must be admitted to an accredited institution offering bachelor's degrees.

Distinguished Young Women Scholarship Program

Amount: Varies

Deadline: January 1, 2020

To first qualify for any award, candidates must participate in a Distinguished Young Women event. College-granted and cash tuition scholarships are available. See scholarship website for various details and application requirements.

Lettie Pate Whitehead Scholarship Program

Amount: Varies

Deadline: January 1, 2020

Women who plan to attend or currently attend an accredited institution in Florida, Georgia, Alabama, North Carolina, South Carolina, Virginia and Tennessee are eligible to apply. See the program's website for details and participating colleges.

S. Evelyn Lewis Memorial Medical Health Science Scholarship

Amount: Varies

Deadline: January 1, 2020

Undergraduate and graduate women enrolled in a medical or health field are eligible to apply. Students do not need to be members of the Zeta Phi Beta Sorority.

Presbyterian Women Leadership Development Grant Program

Amount: $500

Deadline: January 1, 2020

Women active in the U.S. Presbyterian Church who wish to develop their leadership skills are eligible to apply. Scholarships are granted to those who wish to further the mission of Presbyterian Women.

Jane M. Klausman Women in Business Scholarship

Amount: Varies

Deadline: January 1, 2020

Women of any age, pursuing an accredited business or business-related program who demonstrate outstanding potential in the field, are eligible and encouraged to apply.

Isabel M. Herson Scholarship in Education

Amount: Varies

Deadline: January 1, 2020

Scholarships are available to undergraduate and graduate students enrolled in a degree program for primary or secondary education. Students do not need to be members of the Zeta Phi Beta Sorority.

Lullellia W. Harrison Counseling Scholarship

Amount: Varies

Deadline: January 1, 2020

Undergraduate and graduate students enrolled in a degree program for counseling are eligible to apply. Students do not need to be Zeta Phi Beta Sorority members.

P.E.O. Program for Continuing Education

Amount: $3,000

Deadline: January 1, 2020

The P.E.O. Program supports women whose education was interrupted. Candidates must be enrolled in a degree or certificate program and be a U.S. citizen or legal permanent resident.

Women's Independence Scholarship Program (WISP)

Amount: Varies

Deadline: January 1, 2020

Candidates are female survivors of intimate partner abuse who are now separated from their abuser who are in critical need of financial assistance. Applicants must accepted to or enrolled in a course of study at an accredited U.S. institution.

Seeds of Fortune Inc. Scholarship

Amount: $500

Deadline: January 1, 2020

All female NYC high school sophomores or juniors have the opportunity to receive a 6 year high school to college program, and join a network of young women mentors and college coaches. Each participant is awarded a free laptop, tours to colleges and universities, and mentor/coaching opportunities.

NEWH Women Leaders Scholarship

Amount: $5,000

Deadline: January 1, 2020

Awards are granted to female undergraduate and graduate industrial engineering students who demonstrate academic excellent and campus leadership. Students must be enrolled in a North American accredited school that is recognized by IISE.

Girls Impact the World Film Festival Scholarship

Amount: $5,000

Deadline: January 20, 2020

Candidates will submit a three to six minute film on a critical women's issue or a solution to a challenge women face in the world. Both high school students and undergraduate students can submit entries.

Money for Women/Barbara Deming Memorial Fund, Inc.

Amount: Varies

Deadline: January 31, 2020

Grants are available to fiction and nonfiction writers, poets, visual artists and mixed-genre categories (illustration and text) to feminist women in the arts. Two application periods are available each year.

Kappa Kappa Gamma Scholarships

Amount: $3,000

Deadline: February 1, 2020

Initiated members of Kappa Kappa Gamma Sorority are eligible to apply for awards toward an undergraduate or graduate education. Students should have at least a 3.0 GPA on a 4.0 scale.

ANS Delayed Education Scholarship for Women

Amount: $4,000

Deadline: February 1, 2020

Awards are given to women pursuing a four year degree in nuclear science, nuclear engineering or another nuclear-related field. Applicants must also have experienced at least a year delay or interruption in studies.

Women's Army Corps Veterans' Association Scholarship

Amount: $1,500

Deadline: February 2, 2020

Awards are intended to support relatives of Army Service Women. Applicants should be high school seniors with a minimum GPA of 3.5 on a 4.0 scale.

Betty Hansen Continuing Education/Cultural-Heritage Grant

Amount: Varies

Deadline: March 1, 2020

Candidates must be enrolled at least part-time at an educational, accredited or approved school, or be in a workshop, course or seminar, or language class relating to Danish heritage or culture. This scholarship is awarded to women by the Danish Sisterhood of America.

AGA Women's Scholarship

Amount: $20,000

Deadline: March 1, 2020

This scholarship is granted to a female Alabama resident, who is a graduate of an accredited secondary school and has shown evidence of academic excellence, good citizenship, sportsmanship and community involvement. Student must be in need of financial assistance to pursue their education and have an interest in golf.

ITWomen Scholarship Program

Amount: $8,000

Deadline: March 15, 2020

This scholarship is offered to graduating female seniors from the Tri-County South Florida area of Miami-Dade, Broward, or Palm Beach county. Applicants must submit a 250 word essay explaining why they are pursuing a degree in the fields of Information Technology and/or Engineering.

AWIS Kirsten R. Lorentzen Award

Amount: $2,000

Deadline: March 15, 2020

This merit-based scholarship program wants to encourage undergraduate female students who are majoring in physics, including space physics and geophysics, or geoscience. Interested applicants must be undergraduate members of the SPS national organization and intend to continue scholastic development in physics.

Aysen Tunca Memorial Scholarship

Amount: $2,000

Deadline: March 15, 2020

This scholarship is open to female students who are majoring in STEM fields. Applicants must be US citizens and members of the SPS national organization. Preference is given to students who have disadvantaged economic backgrounds, overcame significant obstacles in their lives, or are the first in their family to go to college.

Science Systems and Applications, Inc. (SSAI) Underrepresented Student Scholarship

Amount: $2,000

Deadline: March 15, 2020

U.S. citizens or permanent residents who are undergraduate student members of the SPS national organization are eligible to apply. The program awards students who are majoring in physics or a related science and intend for continued scholastic development in physics in the future.

Aysen Tunca Memorial Scholarship

Amount: $2,000

Deadline: March 15, 2020

Applicants must be female students in the sophomore or junior year of college who are majoring in a STEM field, and members of the SPS national organization.

AWIS Kirsten R. Lorentzen Award

Amount: $2,000

Deadline: March 15, 2020

Applicant must be an exceptionally well-rounded, female, undergraduate junior and member of the SPS national organization who is majoring in physics.

Women Lead Scholarship

Amount: $3,000

Deadline: April 30, 2020

This award seeks female students with diverse backgrounds of race, ethnicity or faith, with demonstrated leadership and faith-inspired passion. Students must demonstrate financial need and be enrolled in an accredited university for consideration.

Institute of Management Accountants IMA

Amount: $2,000

Deadline: April 30, 2020

Women working towards a bachelor's degree in accounting will be considered for this award that will cover one $1,000 undergraduate scholarship, among free CMA exam fees and registration.

Women in Need Scholarship

Amount: $2,000

Deadline: April 30, 2020

This scholarship is for a woman who is the primary source of income for her family and completing her sophomore year of her bachelor's degree in accounting. The award amount of $2,000 per year for two years will be renewed with evidence of a 3.0 GPA.

Women in Transition Scholarship

Amount: up to $16,000

Deadline: April 30, 2020

Women who are the primary source of support for their families enrolling as a freshman to earn a bachelor's degree in accounting are encouraged to apply for this scholarship. The Board of Trustees renew this scholarship annually with evidence of maintained 3.0 GPA.

Rhonda J. B. O'Leary Memorial

Amount: $2,000

Deadline: April 30, 2020

One woman demonstrating aptitude in accounting and business will be selected for this scholarship. Undergraduate and graduate students may apply. Must be a U.S. citizen demonstrating financial need for consideration.

EFWA Institute of Management Accountants IMA

Amount: $2,000

Deadline: April 30, 2020

To be eligible, candidates must be the primary support for her family, and pursuing a bachelor's degree in accounting. She must be in her completing her sophomore year of studies.

EFWA Women In Need

Amount: $2,000

Deadline: April 30, 2020

Undergraduate students pursuing a bachelor's degree in accounting may apply for this women's scholarship awarded by the EFWA. In addition to scholarship money, award recipients receive a complementary IMA membership and assistance with CMA exam fees.

EFWA Women In Transition

Amount: $16,000

Deadline: April 30, 2020

Applicants must be the primary source of support for her family, enrolling as a freshman for the next academic year. The student must be pursuing a bachelor's degree in accounting.

WomenLead Scholarship

Amount: $3,000

Deadline: April 30, 2020

Awards are granted to women who offer diverse leadership in nonprofits, ministry and public service. Women who lead through bold action, innovation and faith-inspired passion are given preference. For specific educational details, please visit the website.

Irene Adler Prize

Amount: $1,000

Deadline: April 30, 2020

Eligible candidates are women entering or continuing their pursuit of a bachelor's, master's or PhD degree in creative writing, journalism or literature at an accredited institution in the U.S. or Canada. A short essay is required along with an application.

Michele L. McDonald Memorial

Amount: $1,000

Deadline: April 30, 2020

This annual scholarship will be awarded to one woman returning to college from the workforce after raising children, with the intention of receiving a degree in accounting. Must be a U.S. citizen demonstrating financial need to apply.

Moss Adams Foundation

Amount: $1,000

Deadline: April 30, 2020

The Moss Adams Foundation is available to minority women, or women returning to school to earn a bachelor's degree in accounting. Must demonstrate clear evidence persistence towards personal and professional goals.

Admiral Grace Murray Hopper Memorial Scholarships

Amount: $1,500

Deadline: May 1, 2020

This scholarship is available to incoming female freshmen who are majoring in computer science or computer engineering. Applicant must have a minimum 3.5 GPA.

Society of Women Engineers Scholarships

Amount: $1,000-$15,000

Deadline: May 1, 2020

The SWE Scholarship Program provides financial assistance to women pursuing a degree in engineering, technology or computer science at an ABET-accredited university. Students who are re-entering college after two or more years, part-time students and full-time students are eligible to apply.

ARFORA Undergraduate Scholarship for Women

Amount: $1,000

Deadline: May 10, 2020

Applicants must have successfully completed the first year of study at an accredited college or university with enrollment set for the upcoming year. To qualify, students must be a female voting member of a parish of The Romanian Orthodox Episcopate of America.

National Pathfinder Scholarship

Amount: $2,500

Deadline: June 1, 2020

Eligible candidates are female undergraduate sophomores, juniors, seniors or graduate students. Established in 1985, the National Pathfinder Scholarship Fund was formed in honor of First Lady Nancy Reagan.

Betty Rendel Scholarship

Amount: $1,000

Deadline: June 1, 2020

Candidates must be female undergraduate students pursuing an undergraduate degree in government, economics or political science with two years of coursework successfully completed.

Daughters of Union Veterans of the Civil War

Amount: $250

Deadline: June 1, 2020

Applicants must apply during their senior year of high school and must be active as a Daughters of Union Veterans for a minimum of two years. Applicants will submit their grades along with information about their extracurricular activities.