11th annual STEAM-H scholarship essay contest opens for Virginia female high school seniors

Posted at 5:39 PM, Nov 10, 2021
and last updated 2021-11-10 17:39:34-05

RICHMOND, Va. - Governor Ralph Northam, First Lady Pamela Northam, and the Virginia Council on Women invite senior female high school students to enter the 11th annual STEAM-H essay contest.

“Every year this contest inspires young women to become the next generation of doctors, nurses, engineers, and more,” said Governor Northam. “This is a great opportunity for students to explore their passions and open new doors in high-demand fields.”

The Virginia Council on Women launched the STEM Essay Contest in 2012 with 170 participants that submitted essays focused on their vision for pursuing a STEM career.

In the first year of the contest, the Council raised $10,000 and awarded three scholarships.

Since then the Council has awarded approximately $200,000 in scholarships.

In 2020, the Council broadened the definition of STEM to STEAM-H to add the Arts.

Last year, more then 200 essays were submitted and sponsors awarded $14,250 in scholarships to ten students.

“Getting students interested in STEAM-H is just a small piece of the puzzle,” said Da’Shaun Joseph, Virginia Council on Women STEAM-H Essay Contest Chair. “We have to keep them engaged and valued throughout their entire academic journey, including pre and post education.”

Scholarships will be awarded to qualifying high school seniors who plan to pursue a STEAM-H career at a community college, four-year college or university, trade or technical school, online, and/or through certificated STEAM-H oriented courses.

One merit-based and one need-based scholarship in each of Virginia's five regions.

To be eligible, one must identify as female, be a Virginia high school senior, and must hold at least a 3.0 GPA for the merit-based awards and a 2.5 GPA for the need-based scholarships. Applications and guidelines are available here.

Entries must be submitted by 11:59 p.m. on Monday, January 3, 2022.

Essays will be judged by a panel of Council members and individuals who represent STEAM-H fields. Winners will be notified in March 2022. The scholarship awards will be presented in the spring of 2022.

For more information about the Council and available sponsorship opportunities here.