For the longest time history bore witness to the fact that girls and women were denied their basic right to education. Thankfully things have changed for the better today. Not only are they free to pursue their dreams, but the unprivileged ones can even avail of sources of free financial aid to fund their education. It is a thing of pride that the number of women attending colleges worldwide has surpassed that of men, and opportunities abound for them. It’s great news for women who had to forget about their ambitions and aspirations to be in charge of personal and domestic responsibilities, as also for those who had to abort their dream courses for financial reasons.
AAUW or the American Association of University Women is one such philanthropic organization that has championed women’s educational and other rights and gender equity for decades. They have been the crusaders for the under-represented fairer sex. It is equally sad that not many women are allowed to take leadership roles by pursuing advanced degree programs in STEM subjects. AAUW’s scholarships are intended to not only encourage female students to pursue higher studies but also to make them industry-ready and steer them towards more unconventional roles in society.
The scholarships are to award those who demonstrate leadership abilities and entrepreneurial spirit before attending college. It is also to encourage women to get back to the mainstream workforce after a hiatus that they may have taken due to personal compulsions. AAUW’s popular fellowship programs and grants for women include — AAUW Educational Foundation International Fellowships, AAUW International Project Grants, AAUW Lew Williams Scholarship and Leila Sulkes Scholarship, AAUW Reading Branch Graduate Scholarship, AAUW Return To Learning Scholarships, AAUW Re-Entry Scholarship, Research Publication Grants In Engineering, Medicine, and Science Selected Professions Fellowships.
What are the Requirements & Eligibility
AAUW Educational Foundation International Fellowships: The scholarship is meant to support women who are not US citizens or permanent residents but are pursuing full-time graduate courses or a postdoctoral degree in the US to gain the required expertise to practice a full-time professional career after returning to their homeland. You must have earned an equivalent US bachelor’s degree by the application deadline, which is usually the mid of November each academic year. The fellowship amount is $50,000. Certificates and undergraduate degrees are ineligible. Selection is based on academic achievement.
AAUW International Project Grants: AAUW continues to extend its financial support to the women grantees of Educational Foundation International Fellowships after they return to their home countries. They, however, need to complete their fellowship program successfully to receive International Project Grants. They must implement the project in their homeland and bring about a positive impact on the lives of women and girls. The grant amount is $7000 and the application deadline is fixed for a date in the first week of November each academic year.
AAUW Lew Williams Scholarship and Leila Sulkes Scholarship: To be eligible for this scholarship, you must be a woman of at least 25 years of age, have a minimum 3.0 GPA, and must be a resident of one of the following communities — Colts Neck, Englishtown, Farmingdale, Freehold Borough, Freehold Township, Howell, Manalapan, Marlboro, or Morganville. For a Bachelor’s degree, you must have completed at least 60 credits, and for a Master’s degree at least 6 credits. The two awards taken together amount to $2000 annually.
AAUW Reading Branch Graduate Scholarship: The scholarship annual amount is $2000 which is meant to be awarded to Berks County women to fund their part-time or full-time graduate studies. The financial grant is awarded based on academic excellence and upon a truthful and verifiable demonstration of financial need.
AAUW Return To Learning Scholarships: The scholarship annual amount is $5000. This scholarship program is offered to encourage women to return and complete their undergraduate/graduate/Master’s/certification programs. To apply for the scholarship, they must be residents of Lombard, Villa Park, Oakbrook Terrace, Addison, Wheaton, Glendale Heights, or Glen Ellyn. It is meant for women who have had a significant interruption in their college education and are now desirous of returning to academia. Preference is given to women with bright academic prospects, strong financial needs, and who exhibit the potential to excel in the STEM fields.
AAUW Re-Entry Scholarship: To be a recipient of the scholarship, you should be a high-school grad, at least 23 years of age or older, without a bachelor’s or advanced degree. You must be a resident of north San Diego County.
Research Publication Grants In Engineering, Medicine, and Science: The scholarship amount could range anywhere between $10,000 to $35,000. The application date opens on August 1st and closes on December 1st every year. The grants help women to overcome the stereotypical hurdles they face while publishing their research work. The grants are open to women scholars of engineering, medicine, and the physical and biological sciences with a doctorate. The grantee is expected to publish their research in a scholarly publication and be listed as an author.
Selected Professions Fellowships: This scholarship program is for US citizens or permanent residents. The funding amount is $20,000. The application date opens on August 1st and closes on December 1st every year. The Fellowship is awarded to women who wish to pursue a full-time course in areas where the participation of women has been traditionally very low. Fellowships are awarded to Master’s programs in architecture, engineering, mathematics, computer sciences, law, medicine, and business administration.
How to Apply or Contact
Please check AAUW’s official website for the opening and closing dates of application for the scholarship/grant/fellowship you are interested in applying for. Requirements are different for each type of scholarship or grant program. Other than some specifics, you will be required to send your curriculum vitae, letters of recommendation from your previous professors, financial statement of budget and payment, financial/tax documents, official transcripts, etc.
The AAUW has its headquarters located at 1310 L St. NW, Suite 1000, Washington, DC 20005. For queries, you can call +1 202-785-7700 or write to [email protected]