STEM BRIDGE SCHOLARSHIP PROGRAM

Virginia Space Grant Consortium (VSGC) provides STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics) Bridge Scholarships of $1,000 to students who will be sophomores or juniors. Students from any federally recognized minority group in STEM and enrolled full-time in a program of STEM at one of the five Virginia Space Grant member universities are strongly encouraged to apply. Allied Health Science majors are not eligible for this program.

STEM Bridge students at the Student Research Conference, 2018

STEM Bridge Scholarship Program

Overview

Virginia Space Grant Consortium (VSGC) provides STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics) Bridge Scholarships of $1,000 to students attending member institutions.

 

A major goal of the VSGC is to help produce the engineers and scientists of the future and diversify the STEM workforce. While opportunities for careers in aerospace have expanded, the number of talented students pursuing degrees in mathematics, engineering, and the sciences has declined. To encourage talented individuals to pursue science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) related fields and research, VSGC created the STEM Bridge Scholarship program to help meet this goal.

Student Eligibility

  • Must be a U.S. citizen
  • Must be enrolled as a full-time student (minimum 12 credit hours) at one of the five Virginia Space Grant Consortium member institutions (William & Mary, Hampton University, Old Dominion University, University of Virginia, and Virginia Tech)
  • At the beginning of the academic year 2022-23, awardees must have completed the first-course sequence of their STEM major and have at least two years of study remaining before graduation (i.e., you do not intend to graduate before May 2024).
  • Must have a grade point average of 3.0 on a 4.0 scale
  • Must be in a STEM major and demonstrate an interest in STEM and in supporting NASA’s mission. STEM majors include science, technology, engineering, math, and related disciplines. The following majors are not the target of this scholarship: psychology (except for human factors), business, and applied health sciences.

 

Students who are members of a federally recognized minority, including ethnicities such as African American, Native American, Hispanic, or Pacific Islanders, and female students are strongly encouraged to apply

STEM Bridge Goals

Encourage students, especially underrepresented minorities, to pursue STEM careers and undergraduate research through the following goals:

  • Connect students to STEM opportunities, internships, and scholarships offered by VSGC and NASA
  • Foster participation in research by preparing students for success and bridging them to future STEM opportunities
  • Retain students in STEM through mentoring and support
  • Diversify the pool of applicants to the VSGC Undergraduate Research Scholarship program
  • Provide $1,000 in scholarship support

Benefits

  • Students enter into the VSGC scholarship pipeline. This opportunity can lead to future VSGC scholarships and fellowships as well as NASA internship programs
  • Students are also encouraged to apply to the Commonwealth STEM Industry Internship Program (CSIIP) here
  • Students are also encouraged to apply for the NASA Internships and Fellowships program. The link can be found here
  • Students are exposed early in their college careers to STEM-related research and will be connected to faculty and students conducting research at their institution. Scholars can use this opportunity to identify research projects to be submitted for future scholarship opportunities.
  • Students receive feedback and guidance on how to prepare applications for NASA-related and other STEM internships.

Awardee Requirements

FALL requirements:

  • Submit resume to VSGC
  • Attend a fall webinar with VSGC Scholarship Coordinator and STEM Bridge Mentors.
  • Conduct online research to become familiar with research and projects being conducted in NASA’s Mission Directorates.
  • The first half of your scholarship award ($500) will be released.

 

Spring requirements:

  • Interview a current faculty member at their university who teaches and conducts research in an area of interest to the scholar. This research should be of interest to NASA but is not necessarily already being undertaken by NASA. Scholars should do their research to identify someone who could be a good faculty mentor for their future research and seek guidance from the institution’s STEM Bridge contact.
  • Awardees are required to submit a one-page report summarizing what they learned during the interview and the alignment of the research interest with NASA.
  • Awardees are required to attend a spring webinar with the VSGC Scholarship Coordinator and STEM Bridge Mentors. Information about the Student Conference and other appropriate information will be provided.
  • The second half of your scholarship award ($500) will be released.

Selection Criteria:

VSGC established this program to promote STEM-related careers and research at the undergraduate level and to serve as a bridge to VSGC’s Undergraduate Research Scholarship and Graduate Research Fellowship and other NASA related programs.

  • Awardees should have an academic background that demonstrates a strong interest and ability in science, math, and technology reflected by completion of a significant number of these courses with high achievement.
  •  The student should have the necessary academic coursework and preparation to be successful in a STEM major at the institution.
  • Awardees should also possess a strong interest in a STEM-related career demonstrated by participation in extracurricular activities and prior school projects in STEM.

Prior participation in research, NASA programs or similar STEM-related educational programs, both formal and informal, would also indicate the student has a good chance of sustaining interest in STEM. Student applications will be judged based on academic merit, background, faculty recommendation and demonstrated interest in NASA and a career in STEM. More information about NASA four Mission Directorates can be found here.

 

Application Timeline

March 11, 2022: Applications are due before 11:59 p.m.

March 18, 2022: Letter of recommendation are due before 11:59 p.m.

Important Links

The application link can be found here.

A printable flyer for the STEM Bridge Research Scholarship Program can be found here.

Any questions can be directed to Joyce Kuberek jkuberek@odu.edu

Please visit our other research scholarship and fellowship programs:

Graduate Research Fellowships

Undergraduate Research Scholarships

Community College Scholarships

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