Scholarships and Grants for African American Students

Despite significant improvements, African-Americans are still very underrepresented on college and university campuses.  The agencies and private organizations below are among those dedicated to providing deserving students and their families with financial support to take the next step in their education.

ABA Diversity Scholarship

This fund was created to increase the number of traditionally under-represented minority groups in the management and operation ranks of the transportation, travel, and tourism industry.

Applicants must have completed at least their first year of college at an accredited university, have a declared major or course of study relevant to the transportation, travel, and tourism industry and have a cumulative 3.0 GPA.

Selectees are judged on academic merit, character, leadership in their community, financial need and dedication to advancing the transportation, travel, and tourism industry.  The ABA Foundation recognizes that diversity is essential in promoting understanding and mobilizing greater involvement in our industry. An impartial committee of educators is responsible for selecting the winners.

Further details and how to apply for the ABA Diversity Scholarhip can be found on their website.

AICPA Minority Accounting Students Scholarships

The American Institute of Certified Public Accountants established this program provide funds for deserving minority students. The Center for Scholarship Administration, Inc. (CSA), a non-profit, independent organization serves as the administrator.  Applicants must be students who are underrepresented minorities in the accounting profession (e.g., African American, Hispanic/Latino, Native American or Asian American).

Recipients will receive $5,000 per academic year to be used for the payment of expenses that directly relate to obtaining an accounting education.

For more information and how to begin the application process, visit their website.

ESA Foundation Computer and Video Game Scholarship

The ESA Foundation established their a scholarship program in 2007 to assist women and minority students who are pursuing degrees leading to careers in the Computer & Video Game Arts.  Thirty scholarships of $3,000 are awarded annually to applicants who meet the criteria.  15 go to high school seniors and 15 are given to already enrolled college students.

Applicants must:

  • Be women or minority students
  • Pursue degrees leading to careers in computer and video game arts
  • Enroll or already be enrolled in a full-time undergraduate course of study at an accredited four-year college or university in the U.S.
  • Have a grade point average of 2.75 or above on a 4.0 scale
  • Be a U.S. citizen

Details and application information can be found on their website 

Gates Millennium Scholars Program

Funded by a grant from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, this program was established in 1999 to provide outstanding African American and other minority students with the financial opportunity to complete an undergraduate college education, in all discipline areas and a graduate education for students who choose to pursue studies in mathematics, science, engineering, education, or library science.

Each year 1,000 students will receive a scholarship to use at any college or university.

For more information about the Gates Millennium Scholars Program, please visit their website.

National Association of Black Journalists Scholarship Programs

The NABJ awards deserving students interested in pursuing a career in journalism.  Each scholarship is worth up to $5,000.  Scholarships are open to foreign or American born students who are currently attending an accredited four-year college or university in the U.S. or those who are candidates for graduate school.  All applicants must be a member of NABJ prior to filing.


  • Must major in journalism or a communications-related field
  • Must demonstrate a record of community service
  • G.P.A must be 2.5 or higher
  • An essay is required with the topic being : “How do you see yourself, as a journalist, influencing how news will be gathered and disseminated? What would you improve about the media business?” (1,000 – 2,000 words)

Each applicant must also submit their resume, a cover letter, their official college transcripts, five work samples, and three references. For more information, please visit their website.

Presbyterian Church-U.S.A. Student Opportunity Scholarships

The Presbyterian Church-U.S.A. Student Opportunity Scholarships serves Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) college students who have chosen  majors in Education, Health Service/Science, Religious Studies, Sacred Music, or Social Service/Science by providing financial aid for their third and fourth years of undergraduate studies. Preference in this program is extended to racial ethnic students in order to promote diversity.

Selection Criteria:
– Member of the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.)
– Completed first and second year of undergraduate work
– Be enrolled full-time
– Have a 2.5 GPA or higher
– Seeking a bachelor degree with emphasis on the missions of the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) in the disciplines listed above
– Demonstrate financial need

Application information can be found at their website.

Ron Brown Scholar Program

The Ron Brown Scholar Program seeks to identify African-American high school seniors who will make significant contributions to society. Applicants must excel academically, exhibit exceptional leadership potential, participate in community service activities and demonstrate financial need. All applicants must be either a U.S. citizen or a permanent resident.

Applicants must submit an application, two essays, two letters of recommendation, a high school transcript and a listing of honors and activities.  Applications can be printed from their website.


Significant Opportunities in Atmospheric Research and Science (SOARS) Program

The SOARS program was developed to encourage diversity in the atmospheric sciences.  SOARS Protégés spend summers at DOE, NASA or NOAA national laboratories just to name a few of the agencies and participate in ongoing research projects that may result in publishable papers.   They work with and benefit from long-term mentoring from respected scientists and professionals.

Successful candidates must have:

  • Completed the equivalent of two years of college
  • At least one semester of college remaining after the initial summer program
  • A cumulative GPA of 3.0 or higher
  • A declared major in atmospheric science or a related field such as the geosciences, biology, chemistry, computer science, earth science, engineering, environmental science, mathematics, meteorology, oceanography, physics or social science
  • Plan to pursue a career in atmospheric or a related science
  • Be a U.S.-citizen or have permanent-resident status

For details on how to apply, please visit the SOARS website.

Smithsonian Institution James E. Webb Internship

Internships are offered to minority junior and senior undergraduate and graduate students in Business and Public Administration. This program is designed to promote excellence and diversity in the management of not-for-profit scientific and cultural institutions.  All internships are 10 weeks long and have a stipend of $550 per week  Travel allowances may be provided.

The deadline is February 1st for summer and fall internships and October 1st for spring internships.  Application details can be found at the Smithsonian website.

UNCF-MERCK Science Research Scholarships and Fellowships

UNCF-Merck Undergraduate Science Research Scholarship Awards were developed help African American undergraduate students interested in science to further their education and pursue science careers. These awards provide tuition support and opportunities for research experience in state-of-the-art research facilities.  Each annual award is worth up to $35,000, which includes up to $25,000 towards tuition, books, fees and room and boards.

Each UNCF-Merck Undergraduate Fellow will be mentored by a Merck scientist and will receive two Summer Research Internships with minimum stipends worth up to $10,000.  One internship will take place in the summer following the junior year and the other in the summer after graduation.  The internships will take place at a Merck research facility in Rahway, NJ, West Point, PA or San Diego, CA.

More details on these scholarships and fellowships can be found on their website.

Additionally, you can find some extra resources here: Lendedu

Organization Resources

Black Wall Street Merchants Association
Executive Leadership Council
National Black Chamber of Commerce
National Black MBA Association
National Coalition of 100 Black Women
National Urban League
United Negro College Fund