Scholarships, Grants & Financial Aid

College of Science Scholarship Opportunities


The College of Science offers a number of scholarship opportunities for incoming, undergraduate and graduate students. Scholarship applications may be found through Academic Works, the University's scholarship application portal. Complete the University General Application then you will see the Science scholarship opportunities.

It is highly recommended that all students fill out the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) each year to determine what state or federal aid for which you may be eligible, including work-study opportunities and grants.

First-year and transfer students must have an active Campus Information Services (CIS) account and University E-mail account (UMail) before applying for scholarships.

Incoming Student Opportunities

  • Multiple awards for incoming freshman and transfer students
  • Upper division 3 course credits satisfies both International Requirement (IR) and Science Foundation (SF)
  • Research laboratory position during their first year the U
  • Summer housing opportunity at the Marriott Honors Community (freshman only)

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  • Multiple $1,000 awards for incoming freshman who declare a major in the College of Science: Applied Mathematics, Biochemistry, Biology, Chemistry, Mathematics, and Physics
  • One multi-year award will be made to current or incoming freshman who declare a major in the College of Science: Applied Mathematics, Biochemistry, Biology, Chemistry, Mathematics, and Physics
  • Preference given to Chemistry, Mathematics, and Physics majors
  • Minimum GPA of 3.5
  • Award covers in-state tuition up to 15 credit hours per semester
  • One multi-year award will be made to current or incoming freshman who declares a major in the College of Science: Applied Mathematics, Biochemistry, Biology, Chemistry, Mathematics, and Physics who has financial need
  • Minimum GPA of 3.00
  • Preference given to Mathematics majors and applicants from single-parent homes
  • Award covers in-state tuition up to 15 credit hours per semester for eight semesters

Current Student Opportunities

  • Multiple $4,000 awards will be made to juniors and seniors with expected graduation date in 2022 or 2023
  • Minimum GPA of 3.70
  • Twelve undergraduates will be honored with the title of Crocker Science House Scholar
  • Each resident receives a $1,000 award to assist with rent and meal plan
  • Students share a quiet, study-oriented residence on Officers Circle, Fort Douglas
  • Residents must contract with Housing & Residential Education for their room reservation and meal plan
  • One award of $2,000 will be made to a junior, senior, or graduate student who is committed to teaching science and/or math in the secondary school system in the state of Utah who have financial need
  • Must be a declared College of Science Teaching major or enrolled in the College of Science M.S. Degree Program for Secondary School Teachers (MSSST)
  • Applicants must file the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) by the priority deadline of February 1, 2021
  • One multi-year award will be made to current or incoming freshman who declare a major in the College of Science: Applied Mathematics, Biochemistry, Biology, Chemistry, Mathematics, and Physics
  • Minimum GPA of 3.5
  • Preference given to Chemistry, Mathematics, and Physics majors
  • Award covers in-state tuition up to 15 credit hours per semester
  • Multiple $2,000 awards will be made to juniors, seniors, and graduate students
  • Minimum GPA of 3.00
  • Applicants must file the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) by the priority deadline of February 1, 2021
  • One $1,000 award will be made to current or incoming freshman who declare a major in the College of Science: Applied Mathematics, Biochemistry, Biology, Chemistry, Mathematics, and Physics
  • Minimum GPA of 3.00
  • Preference given to Chemistry majors and/or first generation college student
  • One award will be made to a student who has more than 30 University of Utah credit hours
  • Must be a Non-Resident of Utah and a U.S. Citizen
  • Minimum GPA of 3.30

Questions

Questions about scholarships and financial aid? Make an appointment with a financial aid counselor!

If you have questions about a specific College of Science opportunity, please email office@science.utah.edu.

Departmental Scholarship Opportunities


Emergency Funding


The University of Utah has limited emergency funding for students impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic. If you are in need of emergency funding, please apply below.

Explore the SRI

At many universities undergraduates have the opportunity to engage in scientific research only in their junior or senior years. Yet successful scientists all have the same core attributes—curiosity, communication skills and a willingness to learn interdisciplinary techniques— traits that many students already possess as first yea students. In 2020, College of Science will give hundreds of undergraduates the opportunity to contribute to real research projects the year that they step onto campus.

The Science Research Initiative (SRI) is a team-based program that will connect students to discovery-based research early in their education to gain valuable scientific skills. The vision is to provide an opportunity to do research for any incoming student in the College of Science. Additionally, the cohort model makes research opportunities more equitable for students from all backgrounds.

The initiative is self-sustaining by design with experienced students tasked with training incoming first year students—a model that could allow hundreds of students to contribute to a principal investigator’s research for decades. The initiative has support from the university, the state, and industry partners who see the benefit of producing students who are ready to thrive in Utah’s STEM workforce.

“Research opportunities for undergraduates are transformative experiences. The problem that the college has historically faced is that there are many more science majors than there are openings in faculty research laboratories. The SRI solves that problem by scaling up the model of one-on-one faculty mentorship in the framework of vertically integrated research streams,” said Peter Trapa, Dean of the College of Science.

The SRI aims to give 500 undergraduates per year the opportunity to contribute to scientific discoveries, just like Bridget Phillips, a Crocker Science House Scholar and sophomore biology major with a math minor, had this summer.

Phillips was working in biologist Mike Shapiro’s Pigeon Genetics Lab writing code for a project looking for genes that determine the birds’ eye color. She was mining mountains of data searching for a quantitative trait locus (QTL) peak.

She was comparing the genotypes of two groups of pigeons with different eye colors. Because pigeons breeds are the same species, their genetics should look identical except for the gene locus underpinning eye color.

“I got a QTL peak that showed where the gene might be,” she said, smiling. “It was nice. I impressed the postdocs.”

Phillips has been working in Shapiro’s lab since her freshman year. She is an alum of ACCESS, a program where rising freshman in STEM disciplines join a cohort of like-minded undergrads ahead of their first semester in college. ACCESS facilitated her placement in the lab where she found her passion—coding and genetics, two things she never knew existed in a one career.

“Starting in a lab as a freshman is so useful, but the fear is that you don’t know what you’re doing. But you learn the skills really quickly,” Phillips said. “The earlier you can start, the better. If you find out your freshman year that you don’t like research, that’s good to know. If you like research, like I do, then you know what to aim for.”

The college based the SRI on a similar program at the University of Texas-Austin that impressed Henry White, Distinguished Professor of Chemistry and former dean of the college who championed the initiative during his tenure. Since starting the program 20 years ago, UT-Austin has increased enrollment and improved student success, particularly among those from underrepresented groups in STEM fields.

“Students from families who’ve been going to college for generations come to campus recognizing that research opportunities are just as important as the classes themselves,” said White. “This program is meant to promote students who haven’t had the opportunity to be involved in research. We hope to introduce underrepresented, first-generation students to research opportunities, enriching their experience at the U.”

During the first semester, a cohort of students will take a research course to learn basic lab techniques that will replace a traditional prerequisite class. The second semester, the students begin work in a lab led by a principal investigator. They continue the research for their third and fourth semesters, and train an incoming cohort to create a “steady-state” model. During their third year, the students can do an internship or work on an individual project that resembles a more traditional undergraduate lab experience. The college aims to have different streams of research in data science, molecular biology and many disciplines across the College of Science.

In January 2020, a small pilot cohort began the SRI journey. White, Shelley Minteer, professor of chemistry, Markus Babst, professor of biology, and Braxton Osting, professor of mathematics, have committed to developing initial projects. The goal is to eventually have 500 freshmen, sophomores and transfer students participate every year.

SRI brings benefits beyond campus Others outside the university see benefits beyond student success. Funding has come from many sources, including corporate, foundation and individual gifts and workforce development funds from the Utah State Legislature. ARUP Laboratories, a national pathology lab, research facility and a nonprofit enterprise of the University of Utah, and BioFire, a medical diagnostics company, are sponsoring SRI because they view the partnership as mutually beneficial.

“We are constantly looking for well-qualified people to work in labs. It’s a career that’s understaffed—graduates have no problem finding a job, but there’s not a good awareness of this as a possible career path,” said Sherrie Perkins, CEO of ARUP Laboratories and professor of pathology at the U School of Medicine. “We’re so pleased to be a part of this exciting new program and to continue the pipeline of excellent students coming out of the university that we employ.”

Research opportunities indeed open many doors, agreed Rachel Cantrell, a senior chemistry major and Goldwater Scholarship recipient. Also an ACCESS alum, Cantrell has worked in Ryan Looper’s organic synthesis lab since her freshman year. At the time, she thought she wanted to be a pharmacist. Instead, she fell in love with research.

She is developing a scaffold for new antibiotic candidates, a crucial field of inquiry as bacteria are constantly building resistance to current antibiotics. Cantrell’s molecule is modeled after a natural product that kills both bacteria and human cells. Her project focuses on modifying the molecule so that it will only kill the bacteria and leave human cells alone. She plans to pursue a PhD after graduating this year. Beyond the research, the community and networking aspects of ACCESS made a big impact on her life.

“I met a lot of great people there that I’m still friends with. I got to meet faculty and was selected for a scholarship to study in Germany—the community aspect was huge,” she said. To undergrads thinking about whether they want to work in a lab, Cantrell has this advice, “You have to give it a chance. I worked as a pharmacy technician for a while, but I loved being in the lab more. Check out what you like. It can open some huge doors.” The new SRI aims to do just that.

 

 

>> MORE INFO <<

 

 
 - First Published in Discover Magazine, Fall 2019

Faculty Profiles

Faculty Profiles


Meet Your Mentors.

 

 

 

Ming Hammond, Chemistry

My first experience in a research lab came from meeting my undergraduate advisor, professor Barbara Imperiali, as a freshman. I worked in her lab every semester and summer for three years, so I feel like I got my 10,000 hours in early on.

I learned a lot of things in the lab before taking the classes. It really motivated me academically. I wanted to learn and understand more about what I was doing in the lab.

 

 

 

Shanti-Deemyad, Physics

Shanti Deemyad, an Associate Professor of Physics and Astronomy, recently helped solve a long-standing mystery about lithium, the first element in the periodic table that is metallic at ambient conditions. Lithium, which is a key element in electronics and battery technology, has played an important role in the development of modern condensed matter theories.

The crystal structure of materials at zero pressure and temperature is one of their most basic properties. Until now, it was thought that a complex arrangement of lithium atoms, observed during cooling in the laboratory, was its lowest energy state. But the idea baffled theoretical physicists since lithium has only three electrons and therefore should have a simple atomic structure.

 

 

Kelly MacArthur, Mathematics

My teaching took a turn about five years ago. I went through a fairly traumatic experience. That helped me realize how important it is to have humane, kind classrooms. If we don’t intentionally build the kind of culture we want in a classroom, then we unintentionally build a culture.

I’m really concerned about equity in mathematics, and I don’t know any better way to make it more equitable than to try to make it more humane for everyone.

 

 

Jamie Gagnon, Biology

A Vermont native, Gagnon arrived at the University of Utah in January 2018 from Harvard. Previous to that he earned a PhD from Brown University and a BS from Worcester Polytechnic west of Boston.

In Utah Gagnon went from post-doc to principal investigator and Assistant Professor of Biology. In his lab at the Center for Cell and Genome Science, Gagnon curates 10,000 fish in 1,000 controlled tanks carefully labeled for experiments.

 

 

 

Joel Harris, Chemistry

To countless undergraduates and former TAs, Joel is well known as a lab rat. He is best known for a hands-on approach to undergraduate laboratory courses, in which students work on independent projects, asking scientific questions of their own choosing, exploring the literature to identify the best methods of analysis, and conducting experiments to solve real-world problems.

Joel works one-on-one with the students in Chemistry 3000 in their exploration of what’s in the world around us, leading to a capstone signature experience for our undergraduate students. This course is considered as one of the most challenging in our undergraduate curriculum.

 

 

 

Pearl Sandick, Physics

Pearl earned her PhD in Physics from the University of Minnesota and served as a postdoctoral fellow at the Weinberg Theory Group at the University of Texas at Austin before joining the University of Utah in 2011.

Pearl currently serves as an Associate Dean of the College of Science. Her research interests are in particle physics including possible explanations for the dark matter in the universe.

 

 

Sean Lawley, Mathematics

Sean Lawley, assistant professor of mathematics at the U, believes the most interesting math often comes from trying to explain phenomena in other fields. For example, if you’re seeking an answer to a question about biology, physics, or economics, the answer often leads to new and interesting mathematical theories.

“Historically, much of the inspiration for mathematics has come from physics,” said Lawley, “but biology is increasingly a driving force that is pushing the frontiers of math.”

 

 

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