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Graduate Scholarships and Resources for Engineering Students

Paying for grad school is a significant investment. With tuition rising each year, students are graduating with more student loan debt than ever before. Scholarships and fellowships help to ease the financial strain of getting an advanced degree. This guide outlines some of the best scholarship opportunities to help engineering students cut debt and come out ahead.

Are you an enthusiastic problem solver who loves science and math? If so, a graduate degree in engineering might be for you. While graduate degrees are appealing, educational costs are a concern for most students. Loans, scholarships, grants, and fellowships can go a long way toward putting a graduate degree within reach.

Whether you’re seeking a master’s or PhD, keep reading to discover detailed information about specific scholarships and financial resources for engineering grad students, as well as our best tips for standing out on your scholarship applications.

Available Graduate Scholarships for Engineering Students

Graduate degrees typically lead to higher earnings, but they also come with more student loan debt. According to Brookings, while only 25% of students with loans go to graduate school, they owe around 50% of all student debt—a big disparity.

Keep in mind, though, that you may not have to pay the full price of tuition if you receive grants, scholarships, and fellowships. Besides reducing the price of your degree, scholarships and fellowships provide another benefit once you’re looking for a job: They help you stand out and underscore your dedication, work ethic, and professionalism.

To get started, check out these top-tier scholarship and fellowship programs.

General Scholarships for Engineering Grad Students

ANS Scholarship Program

  • American Nuclear Society (ANS)
  • $3,000-$5,000
  • February 1, 2023
  • To be eligible, you must be an ANS member enrolled in a nuclear science or nuclear engineering program.

Description: This scholarship supports ANS members studying nuclear science or nuclear engineering at an accredited U.S. university. Applicants must be sponsored by an academic/faculty advisor.

AREMA Graduate Scholarships

  • American Railway Engineering and Maintenance-of-Way Association (AREMA) Educational Foundation
  • $1,000
  • December 8, 2022
  • Candidates must have completed at least one quarter or semester in an accredited four- or five-year engineering program.

Description:AREMA awards scholarships to students with an interest in railway engineering and a minimum GPA of 2.5.

Eckenfelder Scholarship

  • Brown and Caldwell
  • $5,000
  • Varies
  • Candidates must submit a resume, a 250-word essay, two recommendation letters, and an official academic transcript.

Description: In honor of Dr. Wesley Eckenfelder, Jr.’s career in industrial wastewater management, this scholarship supports students who want to pursue an environmental career.

Helene M. Overly Memorial Graduate Scholarship

  • WTS Foundation
  • $10,000
  • Varies
  • Students must have at least a 3.0 GPA and submit an essay, academic transcripts, and recommendation letters.

Description: This scholarship is for women pursuing graduate degrees in any transportation-related field. The scholarship was founded in 1981 to honor Helene M. Overly, the first executive secretary of WTS.

Leadership Legacy Scholarship for Graduates

  • WTS Foundation
  • $5,000
  • Varies
  • Candidates must demonstrate leadership in bringing innovation and new approaches to transportation challenges.

Description: The foundation awards this annual scholarship to a female graduate student who demonstrates leadership skills and an active commitment to community service while pursuing a transportation career.

Paliwal Club of 100 STEAM Scholars Fund

  • 1,000 Dreams Fund and the Ila and Dinesh Paliwal Foundation
  • $2,000
  • September 30, 2022
  • To be eligible, female students who demonstrate financial need must be enrolled in graduate school in the U.S. Applicants must include two letters of recommendation and an essay that explains how they would use the grant.

Description: These microgrants support highly motivated women pursuing STEAM careers.

SBB Research Group STEM Scholarship

  • SBB Research Group
  • $2,500
  • Rolling
  • Students must be enrolled full-time, pursue a STEM degree, and submit a 500-word essay.

Description: This scholarship is designed to support the next generation of innovators. Scholarships are awarded monthly.

SmithGroup Justice, Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion (JEDI) Scholarship Program

  • SmithGroup
  • $6,000
  • September 30, 2022
  • Candidates who are Black/African American, Hispanic, Alaskan Native or American Indian, or Native Hawaiian or Pacific Islander are eligible to apply. Applicants should have a 3.0 GPA and submit a cover letter, portfolio, and resume.

Description: This award is designed to provide students from underrepresented demographics the necessary support to achieve their professional goals, improve the built environment, and advance the architecture/engineering/construction industry.

Society of Women Engineers Scholarships

  • Society of Women Engineers (SWE)
  • $1,200-$17,000
  • February 15, 2023
  • Candidates must identify as women who plan to attend school full-time and must submit transcripts.

Description: SWE scholarships support women who pursue graduate programs accredited by ABET in preparation for engineering careers.

Fellowships for Engineering Grad Students

Abel Wolman Fellowship

  • American Water Works Association
  • $30,000
  • December 20, 2022
  • Students must pursue research on water supply through a doctoral program.

Arthur S. Tuttle Fellowship

  • American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE)
  • Varies
  • February 10, 2023
  • First-year graduate students who are members of the ASCE.

ASNT Fellowship Award

  • The American Society for Nondestructive Testing
  • $20,000
  • October 15, 2023
  • Financial support for high-quality, novel research in science and technology at the graduate level (MS or PhD).

The David C. Lizárraga Fellowship

  • TELACU
  • $10,000
  • Varies
  • Applicants must be first-generation college students pursuing advanced degrees in engineering, business, or related disciplines with a minimum GPA of 2.5 and demonstrated financial need.

GEM MS Engineering and Science Fellowship Program

  • The National Gem Consortium
  • $16,000
  • January 15, 2023
  • Eligible applicants must be members of the following underrepresented groups in science and engineering: American Indian/Native, African American/Black, Hispanic American/Latino.

GEM PhD Engineering and Science Fellowship

  • The National Gem Consortium
  • $16,000
  • January 15, 2023
  • Eligible applicants must be members of the following underrepresented groups in science and engineering: American Indian/Native, African American/Black, Hispanic American/Latino.

IEEE Life Members’ Fellowship in Electrical Engineering

  • IEEE
  • $10,000
  • April 30, 2023
  • First-year, full-time graduate students must be enrolled at an engineering college with worldwide recognition. Applicants must have a bachelor’s degree in engineering as well.

NVIDIA Graduate Fellowship Program

  • NVIDIA
  • up to $50,000
  • September 9, 2023
  • Students must have completed the first year of their PhD studies by the time of application. The fellowship is designed to support research in computing innovation.

Trent R. Dames & William W. Moore Fellowship

  • American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE)
  • Varies
  • February 10, 2023
  • Graduate students who are members of the ASCE and are studying new applications of geotechnical engineering or earth sciences.

WiNUP Fellowships

  • Women’s International Network of Utility Professionals (WiNUP)
  • $500-$2,000
  • May 1, 2023
  • Applicants must pursue graduate degrees that will lead to careers in the utility industry and related fields.

Resources for Grad Students in Engineering

As a graduate student in engineering, your responsibilities will differ from those you encountered as an undergraduate. Expect to take on more rigorous coursework, teaching, and long-term, intensive research projects. Plus you’ll be researching and writing complex documents—including theses and dissertations.

Whether you’re an incoming graduate student or returning to campus for a new semester, this list will help you navigate your graduate career.

Counseling & Psychology Services

Most university campuses offer psychology services. These include individual and group therapy, crisis services, workshops, and psychiatric services for students challenged with mental health conditions.

Disability Services

This office is legally mandated to coordinate with campus instructors and administration to ensure all students with disabilities receive the accommodations they need.

eFunda

Engineering students can visit eFunda to find any formula they need. The website is divided in sections so you can learn about specific engineering topics, access free engineering magazines, and participate in an online forum. Memberships are also available for a monthly or annual fee.

EngineerGirl

This website brings national attention to opportunities in engineering for women. The website highlights the increased female participation in engineering fields and offers resources for engineering students.

Engineering Societies

Engineering societies are professional organizations for engineers from a variety of disciplines. Examples include Chi Epsilon for civil and environmental engineering, Graduate Association of Chemical Engineers, Graduate Society of Women Engineers, National Society for Black Engineers, and the Sigma Phi Delta engineering fraternity.

Engineering.com

Students find unlimited access to videos on various engineering topics, including automotive engineering, hardware, software, manufacturing, 3D printing, aerospace, and defensive engineering.

Engineering Career Services (ECS)

ECS provides information and support including resume consultations, interview preparation, and technology resources to help students develop career management skills.

Engineering Writing Support

A common reason students fail to complete their graduate degrees is an inability to write at the graduate level. Find out if your campus offers engineering writing support or graduate writing services that can help you refine your writing and communication skills.

Graduate Student Organizations

Find out if your program offers a graduate student organization for engineering students. For example, The Ohio State University offers the Women in Engineering Graduate Council, Latino/Latina Engineering Graduate Student Association, and the Society of Black Graduate Engineers; Duke University offers the Engineering Graduate Student Council.

Massive Open Online Courses (MOOC)

These accessible, individualized courses offer prerecorded lectures, readings, discussion forms, and assessments that may result in a certificate. The site also offers valuable articles and resources on navigating higher education and the job market as an engineer.

MIT OpenCourseWare (OCW)

MIT OCW shares Open Educational Resources so students can access thousands of free MIT courses that cover the entire curriculum.

National Academy of Engineering (NAE)

Since 1964, the NAE has worked to advance U.S. welfare by providing independent advice on engineering and technology matters. The website offers activities, events, news, publications, and membership opportunities so engineering students can connect and network with like-minded peers.

Office of Financial Aid

Keep in contact with the financial aid office if you need additional funding opportunities, including scholarships and fellowships.

Online GRE Test Prep

The Graduate Record Examination (GRE) is a standardized test that assesses verbal reasoning, analytical writing, critical thinking, and quantitative reasoning skills. Many graduate programs require the GRE as an admissions requirement. Start studying early to gain the confidence to ace your exam.

Podcasts

Listen, laugh, and learn with relatable, insightful engineering podcasts like The Future of Everything presented by Stanford Engineering, But Seriously, What Is Engineering?, Design to Product, My Best Friend’s an Engineer, and Teach the Geek.

Scholarship Databases

Search scholarship websites such as Scholarships.com, ScholarshipOwl, Fastweb, and Peterson’s. These scholarship finders offer comprehensive search tools so you can find scholarships and grants either by typing in information about yourself or simply by category.

Small Study Groups

Study groups are a great way to find peer support while tackling difficult coursework. If your school doesn’t offer study groups for your course of study, create one. Find like-minded peers you can trust to tackle challenging coursework and study for exams.

Social Media

Social media and online communities are excellent ways to connect with people in your field. Try Handshake and LinkedIn, plus peruse your program’s website and social media channels to find local and online groups.

Stanford Engineering Everywhere

This website is for anyone who wants free tools and courses. While the content was created for undergraduates at Stanford, much of the content is equally suitable for graduate students.

How to Stand Out on Your Scholarship Application

Scholarship applications are as competitive as university spots—especially for graduate students. You’ll need to make a good first impression and submit a top-notch application.

If the scholarship you’re applying for requires an essay, show that you know what path you want to take in your studies and career. Share what interests you and any research or work you’ve done on the topic. Make sure your essay conveys your excitement in a polished, professional way.

Keep in mind that honesty is the best way to present yourself. Grant committees want to know who you are, so show your true personality and only apply to scholarships you’re truly qualified for.

Expand Your Extracurriculars

In addition to a high GPA, your application will stand out if you share your extracurricular activities. Pursuing extracurriculars helps you develop soft skills such as project management, active listening, leadership, and business acumen.

Set yourself apart from other scholarship applicants and demonstrate your passion for your chosen career path with a portfolio of relevant extracurricular activities. You might join an engineering society like the National Society of Professional Engineers, the American Society of Civil Engineers, or the Illuminating Engineering Society. Or you can take a MOOC, read engineering publications, and even sharpen your writing skills by starting a blog.

Get Stellar Letters of Recommendation

Contact your recommenders early—at least four weeks before the deadline—to give them enough time to write your letters of recommendation. Your recommenders, whether they’re advisors, professors, employers, or peers, will need time to think about what to write and to draft and refine the recommendation letter. Consider providing a brag sheet, where you share your resume and activities, awards, and other relevant achievements you’re proud of and would like the scholarship committee to know about.

Wow With Your Essay

When writing your essay, make sure you know your audience. Research who is funding the scholarship and learn about their mission, values, and previous work. Knowing as much as you can about who you’re writing to will help you personalize the essay.

As much as possible, connect your research interests with the mission and values of the organization. If, for example, you are writing an essay for a scholarship focused on combatting climate change, show how your research and interests align with climate change activism and share your passion for the topic.

Be First in Line—Well Before the Deadline

When big dollars are at stake, you’ll need to allow yourself plenty of time to put together an airtight scholarship application. Track relevant deadlines on a spreadsheet, planner, or calendar. Don’t wait until the last minute to complete and submit your application. By setting earlier submission deadlines, you’ll give yourself some buffer room in case of an emergency.

Prepare a list of your extracurricular activities and volunteer work, and request copies of your transcripts. Update your lists throughout the academic year to ensure accuracy. You’ll save yourself time on your scholarship applications by having these materials ready.

Follow Instructions and be Thorough

Each scholarship application has its own specific set of instructions. Follow these instructions carefully, reading them as many times as necessary to ensure you know what the committee is asking of you. Carefully following the rules shows your professionalism and commitment. It also ensures your application isn’t discarded because you missed a step.

Reading the directions multiple times will also help you plan ahead. If, for example, one application requires two letters of recommendation and another one requires three, knowing this early on allows you to notify your recommenders and provide plenty of time.

Proofread your submission several times and find trusted peers or mentors to provide feedback on your work. Create a checklist of the elements your application must include, and double- or triple-check it before you submit your materials.