Computer Science Scholarships and Financial Aid


Updated April 8, 2024

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Computer science scholarships offer a debt-free way to reduce the financial burdens of higher education. However, students often feel daunted by the sheer number of available scholarships.

Many funding programs also have narrow eligibility requirements. As a result, students often invest a lot of time and effort to identify only a handful of suitable funding opportunities.

This guide to computer science scholarships offers helpful tips on sourcing scholarships, preparing applications, and planning your higher education funding. It also highlights a wealth of funding programs for undergraduates, graduates, and population groups that have historically been underrepresented in tech.

Applying for Computer Science Scholarships

Applying for computer science scholarships differs from college applications. Deadlines, eligibility requirements, awards, and required documents vary greatly between sponsor organizations. Students must take a proactive approach to ensure they do not miss scholarship opportunities:

  • Start research early: Many organizations open the application window in January or February for the upcoming school year. However, others begin accepting applications much earlier — sometimes in the summer. That means students should begin researching scholarship opportunities about a year in advance.
  • Broaden the scholarship search: Searching for computer science scholarships can yield numerous results, but applicants can find even more opportunities by searching for identity- and merit-based scholarships. For example, many organizations offer scholarships for women and minority students, regardless of their major.
  • Make a list of applicable scholarships: While researching, students should note the eligibility requirements and list any scholarships that might work for them. They can then organize them by deadline to ensure they apply on time.
  • Prepare materials: Even if applicants must wait several months for the application window to open, they can still prepare documents. They can start with standard materials, like preparing an updated resume, letters of recommendation, and figuring out how to request transcripts, before writing essays unique to each scholarship.
  • Apply to as many scholarships as possible: Organizations receive thousands of applications for each scholarship and award only a select few. Students can increase their funding chances by applying for every applicable scholarship, even those with awards between $100-500. Small scholarships add up. And applying for scholarships other applicants may ignore could increase the chance of being selected.
  • Organize backup funding plans: Scholarships can cover a significant portion of tuition costs, but this is not guaranteed. Degree-seekers should organize additional funding plans in case they do not secure as much as expected with computer science scholarships.

How Do You Find Scholarships for Computer Science Programs?

Look for computer science scholarships by contacting professional organizations, tech businesses, and university computer science departments. For general scholarship research, consult high school counselors and college financial aid offices.

You can also contact your chosen college or program directly, to ask how they award scholarships, and what their application process is like.

Additional sponsors may include private companies, as well as nonprofit foundations and organizations. Local groups and community organizations may also offer scholarships for computer science majors.

The U.S. Department of Labor maintains a free online scholarship search tool. Students can also look for funding opportunities with their state grant agency. See below for more computer science scholarship resources:

How Do You Qualify for Computer Science Scholarships?

Scholarship requirements vary by sponsor. Computer science scholarships may limit applicants based on factors like academic performance and financial need.

Other common criteria include demographics, career goals, and specialization area. Expected application materials also vary. See below for common eligibility and submission requirements.

Eligibility Requirements

  • U.S. citizen or permanent resident
  • Minimum 3.0 GPA
  • Demonstrated financial need
  • Full-time student pursuing an undergraduate or graduate degree in computer science or a related STEM field

Submission Requirements

  • Completed application
  • Personal essay
  • CV or resume
  • Official college transcripts
  • Letters of recommendation

Scholarships for Computer Science Majors

Our list of computer science scholarships includes many helpful options. There are undergraduate and graduate scholarships, plus opportunities for women and other underrepresented populations in computer science.

Computer Science Scholarships for Undergrad Students

Association for Iron & Steel Technology Steel Intern Scholarship

Any undergraduate candidate studying computer science, data science, engineering technology, or related fields can apply. College seniors can also apply if they plan to pursue graduate studies. Candidates must submit a recommendation letter, an essay, a resume, and transcripts proving a 2.5 minimum GPA.

  • Award: $7,500-$12,000 and a paid summer internship
  • Open: Now until October for the following academic year


Betty Stevens Frecknall Scholarship

This award benefits undergraduates majoring in computer science or a related field. Applicants need an overall and major GPA of at least 3.0 and at least one semester (12 credits) of completed college coursework. Students must also be U.S. citizens or permanent residents attending an accredited U.S. institution full time.

  • Award: Varies
  • Open: January to May for the following academic year


Generation Google Scholarship (North America)

Computer science majors committed to diversity, equity, and inclusion can apply. Applicants should show financial need and a strong academic record. Required materials include a resume or CV, transcripts, and essay responses. Students must also submit family and household information. Google encourages applications from members of groups underrepresented in the tech industry.

  • Award: $10,000
  • Open: Until April for the following academic year or when the provider receives 1,250 qualified applications, whichever comes first


IEEE Presidents’ Scholarship

This award recognizes an outstanding student project at the Regeneron International Science and Engineering Fair. Winning projects can relate to computer science, electrical engineering, or another IEEE field of interest. Only fair finalists may qualify for the award.

  • Award: $10,000 payable over four years and a complimentary IEEE student membership (first place); $600 (second place); $400 (third place)
  • Open: Until the annual Regeneron International Science and Engineering Fair


(ISC)2 Undergraduate/Associate Scholarship

Students pursuing an associate or bachelor's degree in information assurance, cybersecurity, or a related field can apply. Candidates must prove a 3.3 minimum GPA and submit a recommendation letter, resume, and essay responses.

  • Award: $1,000-$5,000
  • Open: January 15–February 28 for the following academic year


Lockheed Martin STEM Scholarship

Applicants must be U.S. citizens with demonstrated financial need. Recipients must study or plan to study computer science, or engineering full time at an accredited school. High school seniors and current college students may apply. Applicants need a 2.5 GPA or above and should be interested in a paid internship with Lockheed Martin.

  • Award: $10,000 (renewable for up to $40,000 total)
  • Open: Until early April for the following academic year


National Society of High School Scholars Foundation STEM Scholarship

This award supports high school seniors planning to major in a STEM discipline. The application requires an academic resume, an educator recommendation, and current transcripts. Applicants must also submit a color headshot and a 500- to 800-word essay.

  • Award: $1,000
  • Open: April to October 3


Richard E. Merwin Student Scholarship

The Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE) Computer Society offers this scholarship to recognize student leadership. Full-time juniors, seniors, and graduate students in computer science and related fields can apply. Applicants need a 2.5 GPA or higher and must hold active membership in an IEEE student chapter. They also need a recommendation letter from their student branch counselor or chapter advisor.

  • Award: up to $1,000
  • Open: Annually until April 30 and September 30


UPE/Association for Computing Machinery Scholarship Award

Applicants must be full-time undergraduate or graduate students in computing and information disciplines. They must also hold membership in an ACM student chapter. Students should demonstrate excellent academic performance and strong faculty recommendations.

  • Award: $1,000
  • Open: Until September for the following academic year


Upsilon Pi Epsilon Scholarship Award

This scholarship accepts undergraduate and graduate applicants who belong to a UPE chapter. Application materials include a UPE advisor recommendation and a statement describing university and UPE chapter involvement. Each UPE chapter may submit one undergraduate and one graduate application.

  • Award: $1,000-$3,000
  • Open: Until October 31 for the current academic year


AFCEA STEM Majors Scholarship

The AFCEA offers this scholarship to college sophomores and juniors studying one of the many qualifying STEM majors. Eligible majors include computer science, computer programing, computer systems, and computer engineering. Applicants must hold U.S. citizenship and a 3.0 minimum GPA.

  • Award: $2,500
  • Open: January 1–May 1 for the following academic year


SMART Scholarship

Applicants must be citizens of the United States, Canada, United Kingdom, Australia, or New Zealand. Eligible majors include the 24 STEM disciplines approved by the U.S. Department of Defense (DOD), which operates the program. Candidates must submit academic transcripts indicating a cumulative GPA of at least 3.0.

  • Award: Full tuition plus a stipend of $30,000-$46,000 and guaranteed post-graduation employment with the DOD
  • Open: August–December for the following academic semester


Robotics Education & Competition Foundation Scholarship Program

The REC Foundation partners with more than 100 scholarship providers to offer valuable funding opportunities to STEM majors. Funding programs are open to participants in REC Foundation robotics competitions, and combine to total nearly $18 million in student financing. Additional eligibility criteria vary according to the end provider's policies.

  • Award: Varies
  • Open: Varies


Computer Science Scholarships for Graduate Students

American Association for the Advancement of Science Mass Media Science & Engineering Fellowship

Fellows work as science journalists for ten weeks in the summer. The program accepts undergraduates, graduate students, and postgraduates in computer science and other STEM fields. Applicants must be U.S. citizens or hold visas allowing them to complete paid summer work.

  • Award: $8,000 stipend plus travel expenses
  • Open: October 1–January 1 for the upcoming calendar year


DOE Computational Science Graduate Fellowship

The Department of Energy awards this fellowship to current or rising full-time graduate students who plan to pursue a Ph.D. in computer science and other STEM fields. Application requirements include official transcripts, a green card or U.S. citizenship, references, and a completed program of study.

  • Award: Full tuition and fees; $45,000 yearly stipend and $1,000 annual academic allowance (renewable up to four years);12-week research practicum experience
  • Open: From autumn until January for the following academic year


ISA Educational Foundation Scholarships

These scholarships support full-time undergraduate (excluding first-years) and graduate students with a 2.5 GPA or above. Applicants should show potential to contribute to the control and automation fields. Required materials include letters of recommendation, transcripts, essay questions, and employment history.

  • Award: Varies
  • Open: January 15–February 28 for the following academic year


(ISC)² Graduate Scholarship Program

Applicants must attend a graduate program focused on information assurance or cybersecurity. Application requirements include one letter of recommendation and a resume or CV. Students must also submit completed essay questions and unofficial transcripts showing a minimum 3.5 GPA.

  • Award: $1,000-$5,000
  • Open: January 15–February 28 for the following academic year


The National Gem Consortium Ph.D. Engineering and Science Fellowship

This award benefits undergraduate seniors and graduate students in accredited computer science or engineering programs at GEM member schools. Applicants must belong to a group underrepresented in science and engineering. Students must be U.S. citizens or permanent residents and hold a 3.0 GPA or higher (2.8 for master's students). The fellowship requires an internship with a GEM employer the summer after sponsorship.

  • Award: Full tuition and fees; $16,000 annual stipend for Ph.D. students or $8,000 annual stipend for master's students (must be associate fellows — university fellows do not receive stipends)
  • Open: Until January 15 or the specified STEM departmental deadline, whichever is earlier


Computer Science Scholarships for Women

American Association of University Women Selected Professions Fellowships

The AAUW awards full-time students who identify as women and hold citizenship or permanent residency in the U.S. They must be pursuing a master's degree in computer or information science, engineering, math, or architecture. Applicants must submit transcripts, three recommendation letters, and a written proposal.

  • Award: $20,000
  • Open: August–November for the following fellowship year


Honeywell Scholarship

The Society of Women Engineers offers this scholarship to women studying computer science and related disciplines. Applicants must be U.S. citizens, members of the Society of Women Engineers, and undergraduate students in their sophomore, junior, or senior year. The award requires a 3.5 GPA or above. Members of underrepresented groups and applicants with financial need receive preference.

  • Award: $5,000
  • Open: Varies


Palantir Women in Technology Scholarship

This scholarship awards undergraduate female students (except college seniors) at North American institutions who are studying software engineering or computer science. Applicants may participate in professional workshops and interview for full-time roles or internships.

  • Award: $7,000
  • Open: Until March for the following academic year


Women at Microsoft Scholarship

Microsoft awards this scholarship to high school seniors who identify as women or to non-binary people planning to pursue a STEM degree. Candidates must present academic and work experience, online recommendations, and a statement of career goals. Microsoft also expects students to show leadership skills through community and school activities.

  • Award: $5,000
  • Open: January–March for the following academic year


Women in Defense Scholarship

Any undergraduate (third- and fourth-year students only) or graduate women studying computer science, cybersecurity, engineering, or other areas pertaining to national security can apply. Candidates must present college transcripts proving a 3.25 minimum GPA, a resume, proof of U.S. citizenship, and two recommendation letters. They must also prove an interest in national security and defense and submit an essay.

  • Award: Varies
  • Open: Until March for the following academic year


Computer Science Scholarships for Untapped Students

Accenture Native American Scholarship Fund

Members of an American Indian tribe or Alaska Native group pursuing a computer science degree may qualify for this scholarship. Applicants need a 3.0 GPA or above. Incoming, full-time first-year students can apply.

  • Award: Varies
  • Open: December–April for the following academic year


AFCEA Undergraduate Diversity Scholarship

Women and minority STEM majors (including computer science) with at least a 3.0 GPA can apply. Applicants must be U.S. citizens or permanent residents and hold sophomore or junior status at the time of application. The scholarship encourages applications from students at historically Black colleges and universities.

  • Award: $3,000
  • Open: January–May for the following academic year


Blacks at Microsoft Scholarship

Applicants must be high school seniors of African descent who are planning to immediately enroll in a STEM program at a four-year U.S. college. Eligible majors include computer science, computer information systems, engineering, and select business disciplines. Candidates need a cumulative GPA of at least 3.0 and a demonstrated financial need.

  • Award: $2,500-$5,000; $2,500 awards are one time only, while $5,000 awards are renewable for up to three years
  • Open: January–March for the following academic year


José E. Serrano EPP/MSI Scholarship Program

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) operates this program, which is open to full-time, second-year STEM students at minority-serving institutions. Eligibility also extends to students transferring from junior to senior colleges, and to learners in the third year of a five-year degree program. Candidates must be U.S. citizens or nationals with a minimum GPA of at least 3.2.

  • Award: Up to $45,000 in total financial support during recipients' junior and senior years
  • Open: Annually from September–January


Google Student Veterans of America Scholarship

Google offers this scholarship to veterans majoring in computer science, computer engineering, or a related field in the United States. Undergraduate students may apply. Applicants must maintain strong academic performance. Students must submit proof of veteran status with an honorable discharge or good standing with their service branch. Other application requirements include short essay answers, a reference letter, academic transcripts, and a resume.

  • Award: $10,000
  • Open: Applications for the following academic year open in March and close in April


Great Minds in STEM Scholarship

These scholarships recognize exceptional Hispanic students and students who show high levels of service leadership in underserved communities. The funding programs include merit-based awards. Applicants must be STEM majors at an accredited two-year or four-year U.S. college. An overall GPA of 3.0 or higher applies to merit-based awards; candidates for the awards that are not merit-based need a minimum GPA of 2.5.

  • Award: $500-$5,000 for merit-based scholarships; $500-$1,000 for non-merit-based scholarships
  • Open: Until April 30 for the following academic year


Hispanic Scholarship Fund

This scholarship accepts applications from high school seniors, undergraduates, and graduate students of Hispanic heritage. Applicants need a minimum 3.0 GPA (2.5 for current undergraduate and graduate students) and must plan to enroll in an accredited four-year U.S. school or graduate school. Students should submit the FAFSA or state-based financial aid forms. U.S. citizens, permanent legal residents, and DACA recipients may qualify.

  • Award: $500-$5,000; access to scholar support and career services
  • Open: January 1–February 15 for the following calendar year


National Action Council for Minorities in Engineering Scholarships

NACME participates in multiple scholarship and grant programs for high-achieving students from underrepresented minority groups. Applicants must be within one year of high school graduation or matriculating students at community colleges. Candidates must also be planning to enroll in a computer science or engineering program at a NACME-affiliated institution. NACME gives priority to Black, Hispanic, and Indigenous American applicants. Variable minimum GPA requirements apply to the multiple bridge, corporate, general, and renewable scholarships offered through the program.

  • Award: Varies
  • Open: Varies


Palantir Future Scholarship

This scholarship benefits students who identify as members of a racial or ethnic minority. Applicants must attend a bachelor's program in computer science, software engineering, or a related field at an accredited university in the United States, Canada, or Mexico. Recipients can take part in professional development workshops and interview for an internship.

  • Award: $7,000
  • Open: Until March for the current year's funding program


Ralph W. Shrader Graduate Diversity Scholarship

This scholarship provides funding for women and minority students. Applicants must be enrolled full-time in at least the second semester of a STEM graduate program (including computer science). Application requirements include a 3.5 GPA or higher, official transcripts, two letters of recommendation, and a resume. All applicants must hold U.S. citizenship.

  • Award: $3,000
  • Open: January–May for the following academic year


More Financial Aid Options for Computer Science Students

The National Center for Education Statistics (NCES) reports that 87% of students at four-year colleges used financial aid during the 2020-2021 school year. However, only 60% of families typically receive scholarships, according to Sallie Mae's 2022 report.

While scholarships can cover a significant part of your degree costs, the average scholarship only covers 26% of the total cost. Most learners combine scholarships with other aid options.

There are a couple options when it comes to how to pay for a degree. Degree-seekers can apply for work-study programs and private or federal loans. Education tax credits can also help reduce educational costs.

Grants are another way for students to cover computer science degree expenses. Since these awards are similar to scholarships, we explore grant options below.

Grants for Computer Science Majors

Like scholarships, students don't need to repay grants. Learners can qualify for grants based on financial need rather than merit.

Students can apply for Federal Pell Grants and Federal Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grants. State governments, universities, and private and nonprofit organizations may also offer grants.

Computer science students can also pursue research grants. Organizations offering research grants often require a research proposal and fund projects that match their missions. For example, Google awards grants to students exploring computer science education or the connection between machine intelligence and the arts.

Computer science and engineering students can also find funding options through The National Science Foundation's search tool. The IEEE Foundation also invites grant applicants to submit projects for certain themes each year.

Additional Student Resources

Computer Science Organizations for Asian American Students and Professionals

Computer Science Organizations for Asian American Students and Professionals

Organizations for Black Computer Science Students and Professionals

Organizations for Black Computer Science Students and Professionals

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FAQ About Scholarships for Computer Science Majors

Are there scholarships for computer science?

Yes. Undergraduate and graduate students can qualify for many computer science scholarships. Scholarship funding sources include foundations, corporations, nonprofit groups, and universities.

When should I start applying for computer science scholarships?

Each organization opens the application window at different times, so start applying as early as possible. Students should research options and deadlines months — if not a year — before the upcoming school year begins.

What kind of scholarships are available for computer science?

A variety of scholarships support computer science majors. Many organizations offer scholarships based on criteria like academic merit, financial need, and identity. Students can find minority computer science scholarships and computer science scholarships for women.

Where can I find scholarships for computer science degrees?

Some universities offer computer science scholarships or grants. Students can also review scholarship opportunities from reputable organizations like IEEE, Society for Women in Engineering, (ISC)2, Google, and Microsoft. Organizations that support minority groups also typically offer scholarships.

Page last reviewed March 12, 2024.

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