Applying for the ACCESS Scholarship

For 2021-2022, ACCESS seeks all students who are inspired by science and committed to advancing gender equality in STEM. Application opens December 1, 2020 and closes February 15, 2021.

How ACCESS students are selected:

A team of STEM faculty evaluates each applicant using a holistic review process that considers high school course load and rigor, extracurricular experiences, letters of recommendation, application essays, and GPA.

Your ACCESS Application Must Include:

Personal Essay

Highlight your interests, academic and career goals, and motivation to pursue a major and career in STEM. How will ACCESS help you succeed, as an undergraduate, in the sciences or engineering? (500 words max)


Character and Life Experiences

Provide insight into your character and any personal hardships that are relevant to admission into the ACCESS Program. (250 words max)



Science and innovation benefits from collaboration that comes from varied viewpoints. ACCESS seeks to build a diverse and inclusive cohort with individuals from different backgrounds. How might your own life experiences, leadership qualities, and/or goals contribute to advancing gender equity in STEM fields? Do you have any unusual or varied life experiences that might contribute to diversity in ACCESS? This can include fluency in other languages, economic hardship, being the first in your immediate family to seek a college degree, and/or cultural or societal interests and experiences. (300 words max)

Provide information on work experience and volunteering, leadership positions, awards, summer science programs, science projects, advanced courses (honors, AP, IB, college), clubs and extracurricular activities. In addition, do you have basic or advanced computer coding skills? If yes, share languages and how you would rate your own coding proficiency. (200 words max)

We are especially interested in students who have taken rigorous science courses (high school and/or college level).

High School Students

At least one letter must be from a science or math teacher.


Transfer Students

At least one letter must be from a professor, and where possible, from a science professor. Transfer students who have not taken STEM courses while in college, may request that a former high school teacher submit a recommendation.

If you would like to further highlight examples of rigor and proficiency in your academic portfolio, please feel free to provide AP, IB, ACT, and/or SAT scores. Subscores that demonstrate preparedness in the STEM disciplines are particularly helpful.