STEM Scholarship Provides GI Bill Extension for Military-Connected Students

by Ashley Eneriz

If you’re a military-connected student interested in earning a degree in a STEM (science, technology, engineering, or math) field, or want to add a teaching credential to your STEM degree, there is a new program that may help you pay for it. The Edith Nourse Rogers STEM Scholarship, which went into effect August 1, 2019, is for students who qualify for Post-9/11 GI Bill® benefits, but need a little more funding. This program kicks in after the GI Bill® to encourage degree completion.

The Rogers STEM Scholarship provides select students with funding for up to nine additional months of school, to a maximum of $30,000 in tuition costs. With this new scholarship, qualified veterans and Fry Scholarship recipients can reach graduation without the added financial stress.

Who Qualifies for the Rogers STEM Scholarship?

This scholarship is meant to be an extension of the Post-9/11 GI Bill®. Because of this, it cannot be used alongside Yellow Ribbon funding. To qualify for the program, you must meet several requirements:

  • Be a veteran or Fry Scholarship recipient who has exhausted their Post-9/11 GI Bill® or will have exhausted the GI Bill® funding within six months
  • Be an undergraduate in a STEM discipline, or an individual who earned their undergraduate degree in a STEM field and is now pursuing a teaching credential
  • Have completed at least 60 semester credit hours toward a degree that requires at least 120 semester credit hours

It’s important to note that graduate programs are not currently approved for the STEM scholarship. Also, dependents using a transferred GI Bill® are not eligible. Priority will be given to students that require the most credit hours and to those who are entitled to 100 percent of Post-9/11 GI Bill® benefits.

Why the Scholarship Was Started

This scholarship was named after Edith Nourse Rogers—one of the first women to serve in Congress—due to her tireless advocacy for veterans. The funding is a provision of the Forever GI Bill® and is meant to provide support to those studying in high-demand STEM fields.

In fact, many degrees qualify under STEM, including the following:

  • Agriculture or natural resources science
  • Biological or biomedical science
  • Computer and information science and support services
  • Engineering, engineering technologies, or an engineering-related field
  • Health care or related program
  • Mathematics or statistics
  • Physical science
  • Science technologies or technicians

Using the STEM Scholarship at APU

Azusa Pacific University prides itself on being a Yellow Ribbon school that is military-friendly. The university serves more than 500 military-connected students and families, striving to provide the best possible advocacy and assistance throughout your education journey.

“The Edith Nourse Rogers STEM Scholarship has the potential to make a significant difference because, for many students, it could signify the difference between being able or unable to complete their STEM degree or teaching certification without going into debt after their Post-9/11 GI Bill® entitlement is exhausted,” said Vannessa Weber, assistant director of military and veteran education benefits at APU.

If you think you might qualify for this scholarship, you can apply for funding directly through the U.S. Department of Veteran Affairs. Have questions about eligibility or your benefits? Check your benefits eligibility through the VA, and don’t hesitate to contact the Office of Military and Veteran Education Benefits at Azusa Pacific for personalized assistance.