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Funding for Undergraduate Science Majors

GrantsNet , Science Careers’ funding portal, offers scientists at all levels comprehensive information on financing research and training. In connection with our special feature on undergraduate science, we've provided below direct links to the GrantsNet database to help undergraduates locate scholarships and internships among the thousands of GrantsNet entries.

Using these links, you can discover with one click the latest listings of opportunities for undergraduates in specific disciplines and for different types of programs. The links are designed to return the latest GrantsNet entries for that topic; so whether you are reading this in 2007, 2008, or 2009, the lists below will be up to date. The text below also highlights a few particularly interesting undergraduate scholarships, internships, and fellowships chosen by the editors.

You will notice that some of the deadlines have passed, particularly for summer programs. However, most of the opportunities are offered annually, so you can use the same listings when it's time to apply for next year's summer programs.

Funding opportunities by discipline


  • Morton Arboretum Internship. Researchers at Morton Arboretum in Lisle, Illinois, engage in practical scientific study in plant conservation, plant pathology, plant systematics and taxonomy, research horticulture, root-systems biology, and tree breeding. The scientists at the Morton Arboretum typically have a variety of research-oriented positions available for undergraduate students and recent graduates seeking experience and internship credit in tree and plant research. There's some flexibility in the start dates, but typically the positions are full-time, usually beginning in May and lasting a minimum of 3 months.


  • University of Arizona: Collaborative Research in the Chemical Sciences. The Collaborative Research in the Chemical Sciences (CRCS) program exposes talented undergraduates to the collaborative nature of chemistry research. The CRCS program on the University of Arizona campus in Tucson runs for 10 weeks each summer. Undergraduates of all levels with interest in chemistry, biochemistry, or materials science should apply. U.S. citizenship or permanent residency is required.

Engineering and technology

  • Astronaut Scholarship Foundation. Candidates for Astronaut Scholarship Foundation scholarships are nominated by department heads and faculty members at 17 cooperating educational institutions. Scholarship recipients are engineering or physical science students (e.g., students in physics, chemistry, mathematics, biology, computer science, or related fields) who intend to pursue research after completing their final degrees. Nominees must be in at least their third year of college, have excellent grades, and have lab and research experience in their fields.


  • Mathematical Association of America: Frank and Brennie Morgan Prize. The full name is the Frank and Brennie Morgan Prize for Outstanding Research in Mathematics by an Undergraduate Student. One award of $1000 is given each year to recognize outstanding research by an undergraduate student; the committee may also give honorable mentions. Nomination applications consist of an undergraduate research paper or papers and at least one letter of support from a person, usually a faculty member, familiar with the student's research.


  • MIT Lincoln Laboratory: Summer Undergraduate Research Program. Summer employment at MIT’s Lincoln Laboratory in Lexington, Massachusetts, gives students the opportunity to complement their studies with hands-on experience in a real-life research environment. Participants must have completed their junior year or be seniors in the process of completing their undergraduate degrees. They must be majoring in engineering, computer science, mathematics, physics, or comparable fields and have excellent academic records. U.S. citizenship is required.

Funding opportunities by program type


  • Society for Mining, Metallurgy, and Exploration: SME Scholarships. Each year the Society for Mining, Metallurgy, and Exploration (SME) offers up to 25 scholarships to SME student members to recognize academic excellence in these fields. Applicants must be enrolled students who have completed their sophomore year and be majoring in fields related to the minerals industry, be SME student members of the organization, and be recommended by their departmental chairperson.

Internships and fellowships

  • Pasteur Foundation: Paul W. Zuccaire Undergraduate Internships --Institut Pasteur, Paris. The Pasteur Foundation of New York has created a program for U.S. undergraduates to conduct summer internships at the Institut Pasteur in Paris. Applicants should be eager to immerse themselves in a different culture and self-sufficient enough to arrange travel and secure housing in Paris. The program is open to U.S. citizens only. Applicants must 1) be undergraduates with a strong interest in the biosciences and biomedical research; 2) have completed 2 full years of college coursework by the time the internship commences; and 3) not yet have received their undergraduate degree at the time of application. Knowledge of French or desire to learn it is advisable.

Broadening access to science

  • American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS): Entry Point. The AAAS Entry Point program offers students with disabilities internship opportunities in science, engineering, mathematics, and computer science. Students interested in applying for the internships must: 1) be full-time undergraduate or graduate students with disabilities who are majoring in science or engineering, 2) have a B average or better, and 3) be a U.S. citizen or have a right-to-work permit.

More GrantsNet links

Alan Kotok is managing editor of Science Careers. José Fernández is the GrantsNet program manager.

Comments, suggestions? Please send your feedback to our editor.

Photos: Top, credit M. Stute. Middle, credit Comstock Business Impacts. Bottom, courtesy of EDGE.

DOI: 10.1126/science.caredit.a0700097

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