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Learn More About Scholarships by Major

Major-specific scholarships refer to scholarships that are open only to students studying specific topics. In other words, not only is there federal and state funding available to students pursuing degree-specific financial aid, but there are also many scholarships available for individual college majors, funded by colleges and other scholarship providers. So, whether you are a biology student, a music major, a math major, or any other particular major, there are sure to be scholarships by major specific to you that can provide you with financial aid.

For students looking to apply to these major specific scholarships, there are a variety of different types of scholarship funds to choose from, and the requirements for major specific scholarships can vary greatly between scholarships and between each college major, so be sure to thoroughly read the directions for the scholarship application process.

Oftentimes, scholarships by major will ask applicants, be they high school students, undergraduate students, or graduate students, to demonstrate their interest in the major and to share their passion. As you go through the scholarship application process to find a source for your college funding, keep this question in mind and think about what it is that makes you passionate about your college major.

Below, you'll find a list of scholarships by major with upcoming deadlines in 2022 that are exclusive to Take a look to find the right major specific scholarship to fund your financial aid.

Scholarships for Future Teachers/Education Majors

This list of major specific scholarships is for college students interested in studying education and pursuing a career in teaching. Due to the extensive cost of higher education, and the low salaries for teachers, students pursuing degrees in education, may have lasting student debt. In fact, nearly half of educators have to take out student loans for their college funding, and as a profession, educators owe an average of $58,700. Furthermore, younger educators and minority students are also disproportionately affected, generally incurring even more debt as the cost of tuition steadily rises. Fortunately, these scholarship opportunities exist to help alleviate the cost of college for all college students pursuing educational degrees and/or professions.

Scholarships for Medical Students

In recent years, the competition and the cost of medical school have grown astronomically. In fact, over the last few decades, tuition rates of for medical school have increased disproportionately in relation to the rate of inflation. Despite this rising cost, since 2020 over twenty medical schools have reported a 25% increase in applications, as the pandemic has shown even more necessity for medical professionals. In effect, more college students are planning to pursue degrees in medicine, so even more students are incurring greater debt to fund their education. This list of scholarship aims to alleviate that debt for both undergraduate or graduate students pursuing medicine.

Scholarships for Music Majors

For many college students majoring in music, taking out student loans and struggling to pay off debt may feel inevitable. Not only can this increased debt make it difficult for musicians to pursue their passions, but the high costs associated with actually being a musician can also make pursuing a career in music difficult. This poses a major obstacle for any undergraduate or graduate student whose college major is music, and also creates a pattern in the music industry where only the most privileged are able to achieve success. To help combat this crisis, this list of scholarships hopes to provide financial aid to both undergraduate and graduate students majoring in music.

Scholarships for Psychology Majors

In the last decade, there has been a 13% increase in mental health conditions and substance abuse disorders. Oftentimes in order to combat this growing issue, many students pursue degrees in psychology. Psychology majors may apply their education to any number of fields, and over 40% of those with a bachelor's degree in psychology pursue graduate degrees. In order to afford the costly tuition of higher education, many psychology majors may look into the scholarships application process as a source of financial aid. This list of exclusive scholarships is specifically for anyone interested in pursuing psychology, including high school students, undergraduate students, and graduate students.

STEM Scholarships

STEM includes a wide range of subjects under the umbrella of science, technology, engineering, and/or mathematics. Over 20% of student are pursuing degrees in STEM subjects, and the global need for people with expertise in these subjects is only growing. Although these particular majors tend to lead to higher starting salaries, many STEM student still rely on financial aid to help them afford higher education. In order to alleviate some of this struggle, this list of scholarships is geared specifically toward STEM students.

STEM Scholarships for Women

Furthermore, in recent years, there has also been a push to increase the number of women pursuing STEM degrees. While women make up a slight majority of the number of students receiving bachelor's degrees, they are still underrepresented in STEM fields. To help resolve this, has a list of STEM Scholarships just for Women. These scholarships hope to diversify the types of students majoring in STEM fields by encouraging women to pursue STEM subjects without the financial burden,

Scholarships for MBAs

Business is the most popular major in the United States, and there are no shortage of financial aid opportunities for business majors. However, pursuing an MBA can pose an even greater financial burden, so it is important to find sources to fund your pursuit of a master's degree. Tuition for an MBA can be incredibly expensive, even going as high as $70,000, so scholarships can be an important source of financial aid for MBA students. This list of scholarships is specifically for students with business aspirations who want to fund their higher education journey.

Scholarships for Engineering Majors

Engineering is a wide discipline with many different strains within it. With all the different types of engineering, it is a popular major, and the demand for people with engineering degrees has steadily been increasing. This list of scholarships by major seeks to help fund engineering degrees in order to fulfill the growing demand for engineers and innovators.

Scholarships for Nursing Majors

Nursing is an incredibly important medical profession, and nursing is the second most popular major in the United States. Becoming a nurse does not require receiving a graduate degree; however, the average student loan debt for nurses is still over $20,000. To help fight this debt, this list of nursing scholarships provides financial aid to those with a passion for and desire to pursue nursing and/or healthcare.

Scholarships for Law Students

Law school is an important stepping stone for students pursuing careers as lawyers, but it can pose an incredible financial burden. In fact, not only do over 70% of law students graduate with debt, but students borrow an average of $118,400 in loans to afford law school. This financial obstacle can delay marriage, purchasing property, and more. In order to get over this obstacle, this list of scholarships by major offers scholarships to both undergraduate and graduate students pursuing law.

Art Scholarships

Art scholarships can be incredibly useful to students pursuing degrees in the arts. While art degrees are equally as expensive as other degrees, they do not often lead to jobs with high starting salaries. This can make paying back student loans a major obstacle in art students' lives and can impede them from pursuing their passions after graduation. The art scholarships on this list exist to fund the academic journey of creatives and to help alleviate the obstacle of higher education tuition.

Computer Science Scholarships

Computer science is one of the fastest growing fields within the STEM sector and there is a major demand for employees with computer science degrees. In fact, recent statistics have shown that while 67% of new STEM jobs are in computer science, only 11% of STEM students study computer science. The sheer volume of job opportunities makes it no surprise that computer science is such a popular major, as the number of computer science degrees awarded has increased by over 75% since 2009. This list of scholarships by major is for all student interested in pursuing computer science, from high school seniors to new graduates.

Scholarships for Cosmetology Students

Over the last decade, cosmetology students have been more likely to take out loans to fund their education, but the average salary for new graduates of cosmetology school is just under $30,000, making debt a major issue for cosmetology students. In order to help prevent cosmetology students from incurring such a vast debt, this list of scholarships by major provides funding for students with interests in any and all aspects of cosmetology.

Average Student Debt by Major

The student debt epidemic is rapidly increasing in size, and the average college graduate is around $30,000 in debt. This can make it difficult for college graduates to purchase property, get married, start new businesses, and more, largely halting personal progress. The following is a list of average student debt by major taken from the Education Data Initiative:

  • Accounting: $23,000
  • Architecture: $26,086
  • Astronomy: $18,723
  • Biology: $22,891
  • Business: $23,250
  • Chemistry: $223,096
  • Computer Science: $21,000
  • Economics: $19,849
  • Education (average of all types): $27,000
  • Engineering (average of all types): $24,999
  • English: $25,100
  • Film: $25,000
  • History: $22,215
  • Journalism: $23,132
  • Music: $25,206
  • Nursing: $21,679
  • Performing Arts (average of all types): $24,859
  • Political Science: $21,500
  • Psychology: $25,750
  • Sociology: $21,500

Scholarship Interest by Major

Scholarship interest may be influenced by a number of factors, and it is not unusual for your major to play a role in your decision to apply for scholarships. This is for a variety of reasons. For instance, different areas of study lead to jobs with different salaries, and some majors are more likely than others to require further education beyond an undergraduate degree. This list shows the top majors interested in applying for scholarships:

  1. STEM majors overall apply for the most scholarships
  2. Chemical engineering
  3. Religion
  4. Philosophy
  5. Classics or Greek/Latin
  6. Criminal Justice and related fields
  7. Geography/Urban Planning
  8. Computer science

States With the Highest Scholarship Interest

Interestingly, geography can also play a role in influencing one's decision to apply for scholarships. For instance, someone from a state with fewer universities who is more likely to apply to schools out of state may be more likely to apply for scholarships to cover the increased cost. The following is a list of the top fifteen states with the highest interest in scholarships:

  1. Texas
  2. California
  3. Florida
  4. New York
  5. Illinois
  6. Georgia
  7. Pennsylvania
  8. Ohio
  9. New Jersey
  10. North Carolina
  11. Virginia
  12. Michigan
  13. Maryland
  14. Arizona
  15. Massachusetts

Financial Aid Available/Awarded by Major

This list shows the amount of financial aid available on for the top majors interested in applying to scholarships. In addition to this list though, still has tons of other scholarships for different types of students, including other scholarships by major.

  1. General Stem: $71,500
  2. Chemical Engineering: $1,000
  3. Religion : $1,000
  4. Philosophy: $1,000
  5. Classics or Greek/Latin: $1,000
  6. Criminal Justice and Related Fields: $500
  7. Geography/Urban Planning: $500
  8. Computer Science: $500

Scholarship Applications by Major

The scholarship application process can vary greatly between scholarships, and particularly between scholarships by major. Oftentimes, major specific scholarships will ask that you submit materials relevant to or indicative of your passion and/or experiences with that topic. For instance, a scholarship for writing may ask for a short story or poem while a film major scholarship may ask for applicants to submit a short film or video.

By contrast, there are also frequently requirements that are similar between different scholarships by major. A lot of scholarships will require a specific school year or grade point average, and many scholarships will also rely on essays as a means of assessing their applicants. Whatever the case, be sure to carefully read a scholarship's requirements before applying. The following explains some of the common requirements for various scholarships by major:


The scholarship application process for education majors often asks that its applicant submit essays. A major part of teaching is communication and dedication, so scholarship providers seek to use essays to ensure that the winner of the scholarship is in fact the right choice.

Visual and Performing Arts

Scholarships for visual and performing arts seek out applicants with the strongest passion and talent for the craft. Consequently, visual and performing arts scholarships will often request a sample of the applicant's artwork. Someone majoring in art may be require to submit a painting (or a photograph of a painting) while a theater major may be asked to submit a video of their acting. Visual and performing arts majors are also often asked to write essays regarding their artwork and its importance to them in their applications.


Psychology scholarships also frequently require essays from applicants. Psychology scholarships are oftentimes related to mental health, so essays may ask about an applicant's personal experiences with mental health.


Although STEM subjects are less likely than humanities subjects to require essays as part of the application, essays are still frequently seen in STEM scholarship applications. STEM scholarships also often have strict GPA requirements, but not always. For instance, the "Be Bold" No-Essay Scholarship does not require an essay and is open to all students regardless of grades.


Receiving a degree in business can lead to any number of career paths, which can make business scholarships more varied in their scholarship application process. However, business scholarships are also fairly likely to require essays as part of the application. These essays will generally be about your business interests, your experiences with business, and you general passion for it.


Although engineering is not a writing-heavy subject, it is not unusual for engineering scholarships to request essays. Many of these scholarships can be geared toward students studying any type of engineering, but there is no shortage of scholarships for students studying specific types. For instance, the Jacques Borges Memorial Scholarship is specifically made for student with an interest in civil engineering. Applying to a scholarship made for only one field of engineering may increase your chances of winning as the applicant pool will likely be smaller.


Like many of the other scholarships by major, nursing scholarships will also often require essays from their applicants. The essay questions generally relate to the applicant's passion for nursing and how they plan to use nursing to help others in the future.'s list of nursing scholarships includes a variety of both essay and non-essay scholarships to apply to.


Law is a discipline that requires strong reading and writing skills. Consequently, it is no surprise the law scholarships often ask for essays from their applicants. These essays can range from very personal topics to more major-related topics, generally with a connection to the law or legal studies.


Art scholarships are more likely to have a variety of different application requirements. Some art scholarships may request an essay while others will ask for art samples. A common requirement of art scholarships is a "portfolio", which is a carefully curated selection of your own artwork that you submit for review. Some art scholarships will be open to all types of artwork while other may be specific to a medium like painting or photography. Be sure to read the requirements of an art scholarship carefully before applying.

Computer Science and Tech

Like engineering scholarships or general STEM scholarships, scholarships in computer science and tech may not necessarily require an essay, but it is not unusual if they do. This list of computer science and technology scholarships showcases scholarships exclusive to that feature a variety of no-essay and essay scholarships.


Cosmetology scholarships can also have variety in their scholarships application processes. For instance, some cosmetology scholarships may require an essay while others may require images/samples of an applicant's work. The Private Label Diversity in Cosmetology Scholarship even asks that its applicants submit a video introducing themselves and the importance of the scholarship to their education.

Scholarships Winners by Major

There are a number of factors that influence which majors win scholarships. For instance, the number of scholarships by major available to each major may be an influence, or the average starting salary for a major may encourage more students from a particular major to apply. The following is a list of which majors tend to win scholarships:

  1. Nursing
  2. Computer science
  3. Psychology (general)
  4. Political science and government
  5. Biology (general)
  6. Business, management, marketing, and related support services
  7. Clinical, counseling, and applied psychology
  8. Business Administration, Management and Operations
  9. Education (general)
  10. Mechanical engineering
  11. Biological and biomedical sciences
  12. Music
  13. Law
  14. Social work
  15. Medicine

Education Level Needed per Major


There are a variety of paths you can take to become a teacher, and it is important to research the best option for you; however, there are some general requirements. For instance, all states require a minimum of a bachelor's degree in education in order to become a teacher, and some states require that teachers obtain a master's degree as well, generally within five years of receiving the bachelor's degree.


The most common route students take to pursuing medicine is to first complete a bachelor's degree and then go on to medical school, which is generally a four-year program. After medical school, new doctors must complete a residency, a program through which new doctors work in a hospital or an established medical practice in order to gain more experience. Finally, after completing a residency, new doctors must obtain a medical license.


A bachelor's degree in psychology can lead to a number of jobs; however, in order to become a licensed psychiatrist, you must attend medical school and participate in a residency or fellowship. By contrast, aspiring psychologists must pursue a bachelor's degree and a doctorate degree, which is usually either a Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) or a Doctor of Psychology (PsyD).


A bachelor's degree in a STEM subject is enough qualification to land a job with a good salary, and pursuing higher education is not necessary for many student in STEM, which is applicable to any particular major, like mathematics majors, biology majors, engineering majors, etc. However, in recent years there has been a higher demand for people working in STEM to pursue more advanced degrees. In fact, in a 2014 census, it was revealed that 75% of people with only STEM undergraduate degrees did not have STEM jobs. Depending on what occupation you want to pursue, obtaining a master's degree or even a PhD in your STEM subject may be beneficial to you.


No college degree is truly required to pursue business, especially if you are interested in starting your own business. That being said, a bachelor's degree will give important information and experience in entrepreneurship and the business world. Furthermore, obtaining an MBA can also make pursuing a career in business more feasible, as it makes you a more appealing candidate for jobs and allows you to meet and network with other business-minded people. In fact, in 2020 the average starting salary for graduates with an MBA was $20,000 more than those with only undergraduate business degrees. So, depending on your future goals, pursuing an MBA may be a good choice.


Earning a master's degree in engineering is not necessary to become a successful engineer. In fact, on average, engineering jobs pay one of the highest starting salaries as compared to other disciplines. However, earning a master's degree can still be useful. Not only will pursuing a master's degree increase you expertise and make you a more appealing job candidate, but engineers with a master's degree make a salary that is on average $6,000 more than that of an engineer without a master's degree, and many jobs look for engineering master's degrees to fill higher positions.


A variety of education levels can be had in order to become a nurse. For instance, some schools offer accelerated bachelor's degrees that place you directly in a nursing program. Another option is to obtain a traditional bachelor's degree and then enter a graduate nursing program. You can also choose to go after an associate's degree in nursing. Regardless, anyone planning to become a registered nurse must pass the NCLEX-RN, the National Council Licensure Examination for Registered Nurses. Other types of nurses will also have to pass exams specific to their field.


The most conventional pathway to becoming a lawyer is to first obtain a bachelor's degree, then pass the Law School Admissions Test (LSAT), attend a three-year law school and receive a Juris Doctor (J.D.), and then pass the Bar exam. However, in California, Vermont, Virginia, and Washington, aspiring lawyers can take the Bar exam without attending law school, given that they apprentice with a practicing attorney or judge. This option is fairly rare and can pose its own set of obstacles.

Computer Science and Tech

A master's degree in computer science is not a requirement to work in the computer science field, and projections have shown that between 2020 and 2030, jobs in computer and information technology will grow by roughly 13%. The salary range for computer science and tech related jobs is vast, but a master's degree can make you a more appealing candidate for higher-up jobs with larger salaries. To decide whether or not you want to pursue graduate education in computer science and tech, be sure to research a variety of programs and take into account your own financial situation.


From 2020 to 2030, jobs in cosmetology are expected to grow by 19%, so pursuing cosmetology can lead to many job opportunities in the future. In order to become a licensed cosmetologist, an interested student should attend cosmetology school, colloquially known as "beauty school". In cosmetology school, students learn hands-on skills related to hair, skin, makeup, nails, etc. After completing cosmetology school, aspiring cosmetologists must obtain a state license, which requires a training process and a multi-part examination.