Environmental Engineering Scholarships

The Field is Trendy and Scholarships are Competitive

Over the last few decades there has been a growing interest in green technologies and environmental protection. As the effects of an eroding ozone layer, global warming, and increasing pollution have become more apparent, there has been a renewed interest in the protection of the planet and its resources. This has led to a marked increase in opportunities for students pursuing degrees and careers in environmental engineering. Students holding professional degrees in environmental engineering may choose from a variety of career paths, including conservationism, urban planning, waste management, and construction.

College-bound students pursuing degrees in environmental engineering will find a wide range of scholarship programs designed to help defray the costs of their education. Many of these programs are highly specialized, and target students with very definite educational and professional goals. Students searching for scholarships in the environmental engineering field should first decide what direction they want their careers to take. It will be easier for students to find the right scholarship if their professional ambitions are clearly defined. Before beginning their scholarship search, students should ask themselves the following questions:environmental engineering scholarships

  • What field of environmental engineering is their primary focus?
  • How do they want to apply their degree professionally?
  • What level of degree will be need to realize their career ambitions?

Once these questions are addressed, students will be able to narrow their search for scholarships to those programs most suited to their ultimate goals.

Scholarships for students majoring in environmental engineering are available from a number of different sources, including corporations and professional associations, colleges and universities, and Federal and State governments.

Scholarships from Corporations and Professional Associations

Students pursuing degrees and careers in environmental engineering should look to the private sector for a wide range of scholarship opportunities. Business and industry recognizes the need to develop environmentally friendly technologies, and has a vested interest in supporting the next generation of innovative civil and environmental engineers. Many corporations sponsor scholarships for environmental engineering students, either directly or through the auspices of professional associations.

The following examples should better illustrate the types of environmental engineering scholarships that are available from the private sector.

  • Brown and Caldwell is a consulting firm that works with business and industry to address a wide range of environmental issues. Brown and Caldwell administers the Dr. W. Wesley Eckenfelder Jr. Scholarship. This program offers annual scholarships to students majoring in environmental engineering with a focus on wastewater management. Awards are based on merit, and applicants must have a minimum GPA of 3.0. Award amounts vary, and are determined by course of study and college of attendance.
  • The National Environmental Health Association sponsors a number of undergraduate and graduate scholarships for students pursuing degrees and careers in environmental engineering with an emphasis on public health. Scholarships are open to students enrolled at an EHAC accredited college or university. Applicants must be student members of the NEHA to be considered for an award. The maximum annual award is $1000.
  • The Robert and Patricia Switzer Foundation supports a variety of grants and fellowships for graduate level students in New England and California. The Switzer Fellowship is offered to exceptional environmental engineering majors who are pursuing careers in land and water conservation, environmental justice, public health, or environmental journalism. The award is highly competitive, and applicants will be judged on their academic performance and commitment to environmental problem solving. The annual award is $15,000.
  • Annie’s Homegrown, best known for their popular line of organic foods, sponsors the Annie’s Sustainable Agriculture Scholarship. The program provides scholarships to students majoring in environmental engineering with a focus on promoting sustainable farming techniques. The scholarship is available to both undergraduate and graduate students. The annual award is $1000.

Scholarships from Colleges and Universities

In addition to the scholarship opportunities supported by the private sector, students majoring in environmental engineering will find that colleges and universities are also prime sources for financial aid. Colleges and universities are always looking to entice the best and brightest students to their campuses, and this is particularly true when it comes to science and engineering. The majority of campus-based scholarships for environmental engineering students are privately endowed, and are only awarded to those students with the most impressive academic histories.

  • The Department of Civil Engineering at the University of Texas – Arlington offers several scholarships for students pursuing degrees in civil and environmental engineering. The Freese and Nichols Scholarship is a four year scholarship available to students from the Dallas/Fort Worth area. This is a merit-based award, and recipients will receive $8000 over the course of  four year of study. The V.T. Hancock Texas Water Utilities Association Environmental Scholarship is available to undergraduates who have been accepted into the college’s civil and environmental engineering program. This, too, is a merit-based award, although financial need will be considered in the case of competing applicants with equal credentials. Award amounts vary.
  • The Henry Samueli School of Engineering at the University of California – Irvine administers the Henry Samueli Endowed Scholarship for entering freshman enrolled in a civil or environmental engineering program. Award amounts vary, and are decided on the basis of academic achievement.
  • The University of Florida’s Department of Environmental Engineering administers a number of scholarships for both undergraduate and graduate students. Environmental engineering majors will be particularly interested in the Kenneth G. Hancock Memorial Student Award, which is available to undergraduate and graduate students who have made outstanding contributions to Green Chemistry through research or education. The award is $1000.
  • The Cullen College of Engineering at the University of Houston offers a wide range of scholarships for students enrolled in its civil and environmental engineering programs. Among the many programs offered through the college’s offices of financial aid are the M.P. Pat Anderson Memorial Scholarship, the Dennis Clifford Environmental Scholarship and the Herbert and Faye Lum Scholarship. Award amounts range from $500 to $2000.

Scholarships from Government Sources

Environmental engineering majors will find a number of lucrative scholarship opportunities sponsored by Federal and State government agencies. The growing demand for green technologies, coupled with the country’s recent push to encourage more students to study science and science related disciplines, has led to a number of scholarship opportunities for students pursuing degrees in civil and environmental engineering.
The following few examples should give students an idea of the types of government supported scholarships available to environmental engineering majors.

  • The Morris K. Udall and Stewart L. Udall Foundation offers the Udall Scholarship for students pursuing degrees in fields related to the environment, including engineering, science, education, justice and urban planning. Special consideration is given to minority applicants, particularly Native Americans. The maximum award is $5000, to be used at the student’s college of choice.
  • The United States Environmental Protection Agency administers the AAAS Science and Technology Policy Fellowship for post-graduate students pursuing research into environmental management and environmental science. Applicants must have solid scientific and technical credentials, and must submit three references to be considered for the fellowship. Award amounts will be determined on the basis of the applicants research proposal.
  • The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration offers the Ernest F. Hollings Scholarship for students pursuing degrees and careers related to the stewardship of our oceans and atmosphere. The award is open to undergraduates who can demonstrate a high level of academic achievement, and who are enrolled in an approved program of environmental science. The maximum annual award is $8000, which will be accompanied by a 10 week paid internship with NOAA or one of its affiliated organizations.

Environmental engineering continues to be a growing field that offers students a wide range of professional opportunities. Whether applied in the board room, the court room, or in the fields a degree in environmental engineering is the first step to protecting our fragile ecosystem, and to developing new technologies that will propel the country into a more sustainable and environmentally sound future.


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