There are a significant number of scholarships allocated every year in virtually all subject areas specifically for graduate students that are pursuing Master or Doctoral level studies. Since these students often don't qualify for major student loan programs, graduate scholarships are a great funding option for higher education degrees. Many of the graduate student or graduate school scholarships are based on merit, grades, research, or fellowship qualifications. Some scholarships in different educational fields may also require proven leadership abilities with the community or the industry, depending on the degree being obtained. Since graduate scholarships are less common than undergraduate scholarships, the competition for these financial benefits is typically strong.
Many universities, both private and public, offer graduate level scholarships. These scholarships are generally found on the financial aid page of the university website. Students should also check to see if his/her current employer offers any type of scholarship. Often these scholarships are granted if the recipient agrees to continue to work for the particular company for a year or more after graduation. An example of this is the AT&T Labs Research Fellowship. This fellowship or scholarship is open to minority students and women that are working on their PhD in computer science, mathematics, engineering or science fields. The Zonta International Foundation offers three different scholarships to women working on higher education degrees in government, business, science and public affairs.
As mentioned above many public and private universities offer unique scholarships and fellowships for graduate level students. Once such university is the Wayne State University located in Detroit, Michigan. The website lists the various graduate level scholarships, the amount of the scholarship as well as the downloadable application form. Another graduate level educational institute that offers a wide range of scholarships and fellowships in the University at Buffalo. These scholarships include minority scholarships, merit awards and programs for supporting single parents and working professionals in graduate school. Other programs that offer scholarships that are not associated with one school but rather are across an education field are common in law schools, schools of medicine, MBA programs as well as specific research grants offered by both public and private organizations, companies and industries.
There are also professional groups that strive to increase graduate level studies within their area of expertise. The AFCEA Educational Foundation offers seven different scholarships that range from a math and science teacher scholarship to a scholarship specifically for working professionals.