Explore these scholarships and prizes for students and advocates of LGBTQ+ community. Qualifications for most competitive scholarships include:
- 3.0+ GPA
- Evidence of leadership, ambition, engagement in campus and community activities, writing, speaking and critical thinking skills
- Some may require research or clinical experience
Affordable College Online database of scholarships for LGBTQ+ students
LGBTQ resource centers are popping up on college campuses all over the United States. Even in areas that may lack legal protections for LGBTQ students, academic institutions are providing welcome space and offering LGBTQ-specific scholarships to encourage applicants from all backgrounds and identities and create a rich tapestry of college life. There are also regional scholarships for LGBTQ students and various organization, foundation and community funds that students in the spectrum can apply to for aid. In this overview of LGBTQ scholarship opportunities, discover community connections that can support you through your academic career and beyond!
American Atheists Gay/Lesbian College Scholarship
American Atheists is proud to also award two Chinn Scholarships for LGBT Atheist Activism. These scholarships recognize atheist activism in the area of LGBT equality. You do not have to be a member of the LGBT community to receive this scholarship; allies are encouraged to apply.
Arch and Bruce Brown Foundation
The Arch and Bruce Brown Foundation holds yearly literary competitions for works that concern LGBT (lesbian/gay/bisexual/transgender) life and that are based on, or inspired by, a historical person, culture, event or work of art. The foundation also offers grants to production companies to offset expenses in producing LGBT-themed theatrical and other performing-arts works based on history. Please note that the foundation is not a production company; we provide support for performing-arts productions but do not produce work ourselves.
Astraea Lesbian Foundation for Justice
THE Astraea Lesbian Foundation for Justice is the only philanthropic organization working exclusively to advance LGBTQI human rights around the globe. We support brilliant and brave grantee partners in the U.S and internationally who challenge oppression and seed change. We work for racial, economic, social, and gender justice, because we all deserve to live our lives freely, without fear, and with dignity.
We are proud to offer grants that benefit LGBTQ individuals who have an express need for support. These microgrants, as we call them, range from $25 to $650, with some flexibility depending on the request. Right now, microgrants are made exclusively through the Bee Winkler Weinstein Fund and are awarded to help young women that have lost family support because of their sexual orientation or gender identity in becoming self-sufficient. Applicants must be between 18 and 25 years old, reside in the United States, and identify as lesbian, gay, bisexual, trans, or gender nonconforming.
Campus Pride LGBT Scholarship Database
Free online dynamic database provides LGBT and ally students with the largest, most comprehensive source of LGBT scholarship and funding resources in the nation. Individuals can find how to apply and search scholarships available at certain campuses, state by state, regionally or nationally. New scholarships may be listed by a campus or any funding organization by simply logging into the database. There are no charges to view scholarships or to list scholarships.
Chrysler Fund Reaching Out MBA Scholarship
The Reaching Out LGBTQ MBA Fellowship was created as a joint effort between top business school programs and Reaching Out to demonstrate that business schools are the top destination to develop the out LGBTQ and active ally business leaders of tomorrow. The LGBTQ MBA Fellowship recipients each receive a minimum of $10,000 scholarship per academic year or $20,000 total scholarship, and also receive access to exclusive mentorship and leadership development programming through Reaching Out. 47 members of The Class of 2019 will collectively receive over $1,000,000 year of their MBA experience!
Colin Higgins Youth Courage Awards
Each year, the Colin Higgins Foundation salutes and celebrates courage in the face of adversity and discrimination by awarding grants to Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Two Spirit, Queer and Questioning youth activists (through age 20) who have transformed their experiences with bigotry and discrimination into opportunities to inspire others by taking action, rallying support, building community, and working to change the systems and institutions that impact their lives.
Committee on Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender History Prizes
The Committee on Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender History awards five prizes for outstanding work in lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgendered, transsexual, and queer history; prize descriptions are below. Calls for prizes are announced in the early summer of each year; submissions are due to prize committee members in the fall. The prizes are awarded each year in early January at the annual meeting of the American Historical Association. The Boswell and Nestle Prizes are awarded in January of odd-numbered years for work published or written in the prior two years. The Bérubé, Lorde, and Sprague Prizes are awarded in January of even-numbered years for work produced, published, or written in the prior two years.
Dr Alma S. Adams Scholarship for Outreach and Health Communications
Over the past decade, the Dr. Alma S. Adams Scholarship for Outreach and Health Communications to Reduce Tobacco Use Among Priority Populations has recognized students for their commitment to community service and use of the creative arts to raise awareness of tobacco’s harmful impacts in disproportionately affected communities. The scholarship program is named after Dr. Alma S. Adams, a founding board member of Truth Initiative who is now serving as a member of Congress representing North Carolina’s 12th Congressional District. Dr. Adams’ public service to North Carolina began with her election to the Greensboro City School Board in the 1980s when she became the first African-American woman ever elected to the board. She also taught art history for four decades at Bennett College, a historically black liberal arts college in Greensboro.
FinAid: Financial Aid for Lesbian, Gay, and Bisexual Students
This section describes a number of scholarships available to lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender students. These scholarships offer a variety of criteria for eligibility. This is not an exhaustive list of all the possible sources of scholarships.
Forum Foundation Scholarships
The Forum Foundation's mission is to promote a positive gay identity to encourage continued academic and career progress and to assist in financing higher education and post high school graduate educational experiences for gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender students. They provide an opportunity for students to have a positive support mechanism in their struggle for equality, dignity and growth in their pursuit of a stronger self-identity.
GLBT LEAP scholarship
The GLBT Leadership Education & Advocacy Program and AGLCC Foundation are giving Texas students the opportunity to apply for both GLBT LEAP and AGLCC Foundation scholarships with a single application. Please read the important information below before completing your application. These scholarships are intended to build leadership and promote diversity in the gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender and allied communities. Awards may be used for any post-secondary education, including advanced degrees as well as nontraditional or alternative programs and vocational training.
Kenneth W. Payne Student Prize Competition
The Kenneth W. Payne Student Prize is presented each year by the Association for Queer Anthropology (AQA) to a graduate or undergraduate student in acknowledgement of outstanding anthropological work on 1) a lesbian, gay, bisexual or transgender topic, or 2) a critical interrogation of sexualities and genders more broadly defined. Papers are judged according to the following criteria: use of relevant LGBTQ and/or feminist anthropological theory and literature, potential for contribution to and advancement of queer studies and our understanding of sexualities worldwide, attention to difference (gender, class, race, ethnicity, nation), originality, organization and coherence, and timeliness.
McCleary Law Fellows Program
As the nation’s largest lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer civil rights organization, the Human Rights Campaign is dedicated to ending discrimination, securing equal rights and protecting the health and safety of LGBTQ Americans. With a 150-person national staff and more than 1.5 million members and supporters throughout the country, HRC lobbies the federal government on LGBTQ legislative and regulatory matters, advocates before the courts as an amicus curiae, participates in judicial and executive branch nominations process, leads and/or actively works on national civil rights coalitions, educates the public, participates in elections and works at the grassroots level on civil rights and political matters of national importance.
Michael Greenberg Student Writing Competition
Established in memory of Michael Greenberg, a former National LGBT Bar Association board member and Philadelphia attorney who died in 1996 from complications of AIDS, this exciting competition is dedicated to encouraging and recognizing outstanding law student scholarship on the legal issues affecting lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) persons. Each year, the LGBT Bar receives dozens of submissions from law students on the cutting edge legal issues affecting the LGBT community. The winning article will be published in the Tulane Journal of Law & Sexuality: A Review of Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity in the Law.
National AIDS Memorial Grove Pedro Zamora Young Leaders Scholarship
The Scholarship is open to all current high school seniors, and college freshman, sophomores and juniors (ages 27 and younger) who demonstrate an active commitment to fighting AIDS and taking on roles of public service and leadership (e.g. providing peer-based prevention and education; engaging in advocacy or grass-roots activism; raising public awareness; and/or delivering practical, emotional or treatment support to people living with HIV/AIDS), and who plan to continue to find ways to make a difference in the epidemic through their careers or through public service opportunities after their education is complete.
National Organization of Gay and Lesbian Scientists and Technical Professionals Out
to Innovate scholarship
NOGLSTP is a professional society that educates and advocates for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer students and professionals in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics. These scholarships are intended for undergraduate and graduate students pursuing degrees in science, technology, engineering,or mathematics (STEM) programs who are either lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer or an active ally of the LGBTQ+ community. The scholarships are designed to promote academic excellence and increased visibility of talented LGBTQ+ students in STEM careers.
NLGJA Kay Longcope Scholarship Award
The Kay Longcope Scholarship Award was established in 2008 through a gift from Longcope’s estate and with the guidance of Longcope’s partner Barbara Wohlgemuth. The scholarship award provides tuition assistance to an LGBTQ student of color who plans a career in journalism and is committed to furthering NLGJA’s mission of fair and accurate coverage of the LGBTQ community.
NLGJA Leroy F. Aarons Scholarship Award
Leroy F. Aarons dedicated his life to journalism. He believed that the LGBTQ community could advance if the news media fairly and accurately portrayed the lives of LGBTQ individuals and their issues. This simple but visionary idea became the foundation for NLGJA. The scholarship award provides tuition funding to an LGBTQ student who plans a career in journalism and is committed to furthering NLGJA’s mission of fair and accurate coverage of the LGBTQ community.
NWSA Women's Lesbian Caucus Scholarship
The purpose of the annual NWSA Lesbian Caucus Award is to provide a $500 research award in recognition of a Master’s Thesis or Doctoral Dissertation project in areas of Lesbian, Queer, and LGBT Studies that resonates with the mission of NWSA. The field of the degree is open, but the work should focus on lesbian (defined broadly) lives, identities, or realities and make a contribution to the fields of lesbian and sexuality studies.
Out to Protect Scholarship
A scholarship award for individuals who identify as gay, lesbian, bi-sexual, or transgender and who are pursuing a career in law enforcement by attending a basic law enforcement training program. This could be a basic police academy, sheriff's academy, corrections academy, or 9-1-1 dispatcher academy.
Parents, Families, and Friends of Lesbians and Gays (PFLAG) National Scholarship Program
Are you lesbian, gay or bi (or asexual, pansexual, queer, or somewhere in the LGB "family")? Are you trans, gender-expansive, gender-queer or somewhere on (or even off) the gender spectrum? Are you an awesome Ally? PFLAG's scholarship program supports the next generation of leaders who have already been working tirelessly on numerous programs, projects, and activities aimed at making schools and communities safe and welcoming for all. PFLAG's scholarships are open to U.S. and non-U.S. citizens (Non-US citizens are eligible as long as they attend an accredited institution in the United States).
Point Foundation was established in 2001 to nurture the next generation of LGBTQ leaders. Point Foundation empowers promising LGBTQ students to achieve their full academic and leadership potential despite the obstacles often put before them to make a significant impact on society. By identifying and supporting these scholars, Point hopes to provide a greater level of acceptance and respect within future generations for all persons, regardless of sexual orientation, gender expression, or gender identity. We honor our scholars - their leadership, their acumen, their early involvement in lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer causes, and their pledge to make the world a fairer and better place for all.
Pride Foundation Scholarships
The Pride Foundation administers over twenty-five distinct scholarship funds. To be eligible, you must be a resident of the Pacific Northwest (Washington, Oregon, Idaho, Montana and Alaska). In addition to general scholarships for gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender and allied students, there are a number of specific scholarships targeting various demographics and areas of study.
Pride Law Fund Summer Fellowships
The PLF Fellowship Program is open to law students working under the supervision of an attorney at a 501(c)(3) tax exempt non-profit organization anywhere in the country. Enrollment in law school is not required for the Steven Richter Fellowship. The Richter Fellowship is not limited to law students or legal projects.
Queer Foundation Scholarship Fund
The Queer Foundation Scholarship Fund promotes effective writing by, about, and/or for queer youth. The Queer Foundation offers to the winners of each year's essay contest scholarships to the U.S. college or university of their choice to study queer theory or related fields. Examples of related fields are queer medical, legal, or social issues.
The Rainbow Scholarship awards deserving lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer (LGBTQ+) students who aim to participate in high-quality, rigorous education abroad programs. To be considered for the Rainbow Scholarship, applicants must self-identify on the Fund for Education Abroad (FEA) scholarship application.
Roy Scrivner Memorial Research Grants
The Roy Scrivner Research Grants provide graduate student grants (preference given to dissertation candidates) for empirical or applied research that encourages the study of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) family psychology and LGBT family therapy. Researchers from all fields of the behavioral and social sciences are encouraged to apply.
The Gregory Sprague
The Gregory Sprague Prize recognizes an outstanding published or unpublished paper, article, book chapter, or dissertation chapter on lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgendered, transsexual, and/or queer history completed in English by a graduate student. It is awarded in even-numbered years, covering work completed during the previous two years.
The Ruth Benedict Prize
The Ruth Benedict Prize is presented each year at the American Anthropological Association’s annual meeting to acknowledge excellence in a scholarly book written from an anthropological perspective about a lesbian, gay, bisexual, or transgender topic. The Ruth Benedict Prize is awarded in each of two separate categories: one for a single-authored monograph and another for an edited volume. Submissions may be on any topic related to lesbians, gay men, bisexuals, transgender people, or other gender / sexual formations and categories from any world culture area. Topics may include the study of normativity, queer theory, and the social/historical construction of sexual and gender identities, discourses and categories. Authors may represent any scholarly discipline, but the material submitted must engage anthropological theories and methods.
Tom Steel Post-Graduate Fellowship
The Tom Steel Post-Graduate Fellowship provides funding for a new lawyer to work in the United States on an innovative, public interest law project that serves the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender community. The Fellowship will help ensure that unmet legal needs are recognized and prioritized on an on-going basis, and that the next generation of legal advocates for the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender community develops the critical skills necessary to secure civil rights into the future.
Traub-Dicker Rainbow Scholarship
The Traub-Dicker Rainbow Scholarship was established by Peggy Traub and Phyllis Dicker to encourage and support LGBTQ women in their pursuit of higher education. This program provides one-year scholarships of $1,500 or $3,000 to those graduating high school or already enrolled in college in any year of study, including graduate school. Scholarships are paid directly to the recipient’s school and are applied toward tuition.
Wayne F. Placek Grants
The Wayne F. Placek Grant encourages research to increase the general public's understanding of homosexuality and sexual orientation, and to alleviate the stress that lesbian women, gay men, bisexual women, bisexual men and transgender individuals experience in this and future civilizations. Since 1995, the Placek Fund has granted more than $1 million. The Wayne F. Placek Grant encourages research that addresses the following topics: Heterosexuals' attitudes and behaviors toward lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) people, including prejudice, discrimination and violence. Family and workplace issues relevant to LGBT people. Special concerns of sectors of the LGBT population that have historically been underrepresented in scientific research.
Women in Medicine Leadership Scholarship
Women in Medicine (WIM) will present LGBTQ Leadership Scholarships for female medical students enrolled in allopathic, osteopathic, or naturopathic medical schools in the United States or Canada.