Scholarship Opportunities for Women

Last updated: November 06, 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.

Virginia Heinlein Memorial Scholarship

Amount: $2,500

Deadline: April 1, 2020

Candidates must be undergraduate students enrolled in an accredited four year institution and majoring in math, engineering, biological or physical sciences, or science fiction as literature. Candidates may be the residents of any country.

BHW Scholarship

Amount: $3,000

Deadline: April 15, 2020

This scholarship is for women pursuing an undergraduate or master's degree and majoring in science, technology, engineering, or mathematics.

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.

WomenIn Scholarship

Amount: $2,500

Deadline: May 31, 2020

Both undergraduate and graduate women pursuing a career in video game development or the business of video games are eligible. Various majors qualify such as game design, law, business, programming and marketing.

Billie Bennett Ward Memorial Endowed Scholarship

Amount: Varies

Deadline: June 1, 2020

Applicant must be enrolled in the College of Veterinary Medicine. Preference given to female students involved in research.

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.

Women Forward in Technology

Amount: $10,000

Deadline: June 15, 2020

The Minority Corporate Counsel Association awards one student this non-renewable scholarship to a student in their first year of law school. Students can register on the scholarship website to learn more about specific eligibility requirements.

Women Forward in Technology

Amount: $10,000

Deadline: June 15, 2020

The Minority Corporate Counsel Association awards one student this non-renewable scholarship to a student in their first year of law school. Students can register on the scholarship website to learn more about specific eligibility requirements.

The Future is Female

Amount: $3,000

Deadline: June 30, 2020

Eligibility based on enrollment in college with a GPA or 3.0 or above. Must be a U.S. citizen and an awesome female. Applicants will share their story for what makes them exceptional, trailblazing, and fearless females for a chance to win and be featured in the True&Co Journal.

Pepsico Foundation-Uncf Bronx Women's Initiativ

Amount: Varies

Deadline: June 30, 2020

The PepsiCo Foundation and UNCF Bronx Women's Initiative is offering upto $5000 scholarship Program that is open to female students from the Bronx, NY. Students with financial need will be given priority.

Horizons Scholarship

Amount: $3,500

Deadline: June 30, 2020

Student residents in the state of Michigan enrolled at the junior level or above are eligible for this award. Must have a GPA of 3.25 or higher, financial need, and interest in national security or defense.

Buffered Scholarship for Women in STEM fields

Amount: $5,000

Deadline: July 1, 2020

The scholarship is available to all students who identify as women and have a GPA of 3.0 or higher. All applicants must be currently pursuing, or plan to pursue, a degree with a focus on science, technology, engineering, or math.

Immigration Scholarship Essay Contest

Amount: $500

Deadline: July 1, 2020

Any U.S. resident that has been accepted to an accredited university can apply. Applicants are asked to answer questions on immigration for a chance to win.

Women Chefs & Restaurateurs, or WCR, Scholarship

Amount: Varies

Deadline: July 13, 2020

Women's Chefs and Restaurateurs give scholarship awards to students who are pursuing a culinary degree and active members of WCR. Eligibility and award amounts differ from scholarship to scholarship. Check the WCR website for current award opportunities.

Howard G. Buffett Fund For Women Journalists

Amount: Varies

Deadline: August 5, 2020

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 7, 2020

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 11, 2020

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

Margaret McNamara Memorial Fund

Amount: Varies

Deadline: September 14, 2020

Women over the age of 25 who are not citizens of the U.S. or Canada but attend institutions in those countries are eligible to apply. Some scholarships provide up to $12,000, while others offer funding for study abroad experiences. See the website for current awards and eligibility requirements.

Adobe Research Women In Technology Scholarship

Amount: $10,000

Deadline: September 25, 2020

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 Prize

Amount: $250 - $1,000

Deadline: October 1, 2020

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.

Association for Women in Sports Media Scholarships

Amount: $1,000

Deadline: October 13, 2020

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, 2020

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.

The Science Ambassador Scholarship

Amount: Varies

Deadline: December 1, 2020

A full tuition scholarship is awarded to a woman seeking an undergraduate degree in engineering, science or math, funded by Cards Against Humanity. A video is necessary for entry and candidates must be attending college next academic year to be eligible.

Girls Who Illustrate Awesomeness Scholarship

Amount: $750

Deadline: December 31, 2020

This is a scholarship opportunity for young women of color who wish to make the world a better place. Students must be enrolled in an accredited university and have a 3.0 GPA for consideration. 500-word essays and/or 5 minute video submissions will be selected for this award.

The Payette Sho-Ping Chin Memorial Academic Scholarship

Amount: $10,000

Deadline: January 1, 2021

The scholarship aims to support a woman studying architecture within a NAAB-accredited bachelor or master’s degree program. Applicant must be a US citizen who is a rising 3rd or 4th-year undergraduate or graduate student in the NAAB-accredited architecture program.

Dr. Elinor McGrath Scholarship

Amount: $500

Deadline: January 31, 2021

The scholarship is offered to a female veterinary student in her 1st, 2nd, or 3rd year of veterinary school. The recipient of this award will be selected based on her story of how she achieved her veterinary goals with the strength and determination of Dr. McGrath.

Dr. Nancy Foster Scholarship Program

Amount: $42,000

Deadline: January 31, 2021

Candidates must be U.S. citizens accepted to or enrolled in an undergraduate program related to NOAA mission-related sciences of oceanography, marine biology and maritime archaeology, including all science, engineering and resource management of ocean and coastal areas.. Women and minority candidates are encouraged to apply.

Beatrice F. Kroesche Memorial Scholarship

Amount: $1000 - $2000

Deadline: February 1, 2021

Available for females, females with hearing disabilities, and/or females with vision disabilities who are enrolled full-time as undergraduate students in the College of Education, College of Humanities, College of Engineering or David Eccles School of Business.

ESA Foundation Scholarship Program: esports Scholarship

Amount: $3,000

Deadline: March 1, 2021

This year, as part of its 2020-21 scholarship program, the ESA Foundation introduced its first-ever esports scholarship, offering academic support for women and minorities competitively gaming through their U.S. colleges and universities.Women and minorities are encouraged to apply.

HORIZONS Foundation Scholarship

Amount: varies

Deadline: March 15, 2021

Applicant must be a graduate or undergraduate female currently enrolled at an accredited university or college, either full-time or part- time (must be at least at junior level status). Must have an interest in pursuing a career related to national security or defense and have a minimum of a 3.25 GPA.

Journalism Education Association

Amount: $1,000

Deadline:

The Journalism Education Association offers scholarships to those who desire to teach journalism. Students must be current undergraduate or graduate students.