If you’re an ambitious, well-rounded high school senior or undergraduate freshman, sophomore, or junior passionate about or studying Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM), then we highly recommend you check out the Lockheed Martin STEM scholarship program. Lockheed Martin, a U.S. aerospace and defense manufacturer, offers its annual scholarship program to invest in “the next generation of STEM talent.”
The scholarship is quite prestigious, and winning it would highlight your potential to both college admissions offices and future employers.
What is the Lockheed Martin Scholarship all about?
Every year, Lockheed Martin offers its STEM scholarship to high school seniors and undergraduate freshmen, sophomores, or juniors who are studying or intend to study computer science or engineering. Lockheed Martin, through its scholarship program, seeks to identify promising students willing to pursue a career at the company. To this end, they also consider scholarship winners for internships. Lockheed Martin plans on hiring 50,000 STEM graduates in the next 15 years.
Since the scholarship’s launch in 2019, the company has disbursed over $25 million to nearly 1000 students.
Lockheed Martin is committed to supporting students who come from minority and underrepresented backgrounds, especially in STEM. In 2023, 60% of winners came from underrepresented racial and ethnic groups, 49% were women, 24% identified as LGBTQIA+, and 13% had a disability.
Previous winners of the scholarship include Ty, who, through the program, transferred to the Colorado School of Mines to study mechanical engineering. He later interned with Lockheed Martin and accepted a full-time position to work on its fleet ballistic missile program. Kalista, a female recipient at Iowa State, says the scholarship motivates her to succeed despite often being the only woman in the classroom. You can read more about previous winners here.
What is the scholarship amount?
Lockheed Martin awards $10,000 to 200 winners every year. This means the company offers $2 million annually. Winners can reapply, which means they can earn up to $40,000 during their undergraduate course.
How prestigious is the program?
The program is very prestigious. Lockheed Martin’s STEM scholarship stands apart from others, in part because it is open to high school seniors and undergraduate freshmen, sophomores, and seniors. It grants scholarships worth $10,000 to 20 winners annually, renewable every year of a four-year undergraduate degree. The company also offers a path to employment and the opportunity to work on cutting-edge defense research, making it highly desirable.
Additionally, the program is highly competitive. Approximately 7,000 students apply and 200 are accepted, with an acceptance rate of 2.8% (based on 2021 data).
What is the application deadline?
Not specified. Applications for the 2023 cohort are shut, and Lockheed Martin will update its scholarship website with information for next year’s intake in early 2024 (tentative application deadline: March 31, 2024).
Who is eligible for the scholarship?
To apply, you have to meet the following criteria:
Must be a U.S. citizen
Must be attending or plan to attend a U.S. university
Must demonstrate financial need
Must be pursuing or intend to pursue a four-year undergraduate degree in computer science or engineering
Must be a high school senior with a GPA of at least 2.5 or an undergraduate freshman, sophomore, or junior with a 2.5 or above GPA
Must show interest in interning with Lockheed Martin (though you do not need to win the scholarship to be an intern, and recipients are not guaranteed an internship)
Family members of Lockheed Martin employees are also eligible to apply
Eligible computer science and engineering programs are as follows: aerospace engineering, computer engineering, computer science, electrical engineering, electrical and computer engineering, industrial engineering, mathematics, mechanical engineering, and physics.
How does Lockheed Martin select winners?
While Lockheed Martin takes academic performance into account, it highly values leadership experience and participation in community activities, clear career and education objectives, unusual family circumstances, and demonstrated financial need.
Selection of recipients is done via Scholarship America, a non-profit organization that assists foundations, companies, and other entities with awarding grants, to ensure that no Lockheed Martin employee or officer is involved.
Special consideration is given to ethnic minorities and other groups underrepresented in STEM. In 2023, 60% of recipients came from underrepresented racial and ethnic groups. Serving or retired military personnel and their spouses are also encouraged to apply.
Pros and Cons of the Lockheed Martin STEM Scholarship Program
It is highly prestigious and competitive Winning the scholarship would definitely set you apart from your cohort, given its low acceptance rate of 2.8%. It would also identify you as a well-rounded student since Lockheed Martin gives significant weightage to your extra-curricular activities.
Internship and employment opportunities When Lockheed Martin identifies recipients, they also identify potential employees. The company wants to hire 50,000 STEM professionals in the next 15 years, and winning the scholarship would definitely improve your chances of employment.
You do not need a very high GPA (though it would definitely help!) The minimum GPA requirement of 2.5 is significantly lower than most other scholarships, especially for the more prestigious ones. This means your extracurricular activities will be equally — if not more — important than your grades.
You can renew your scholarship You can receive $10,000 every year for up to four years, making the total scholarship $40,000. Lockheed Martin does not specify whether the grant is only for tuition fees or if you can use it to pay for books, materials, lodging, etc.
The scholarship is quite accessible Lockheed Martin is committed to having more recipients from underrepresented racial and ethnic backgrounds, women, and people who identify as LGBTQIA+.
The scholarship is only open to U.S. citizens If you’re an ambitious international student, this will limit the number of prestigious scholarships you can apply to. Additionally, not being eligible for this scholarship could reduce your opportunities for employment after you graduate.
Very few people are accepted into the program While a competitive scholarship is prestigious if you win it, Lockheed Martin’s acceptance rate of 2.8% makes the chances of being successful much lower.
Lesser weightage on grades If you’re academically gifted, or if you invested a lot of time in improving your grades at the cost of pursuing extracurricular activities, the selection committee may prefer a more rounded student.
The scholarship does not cover a variety of STEM subjects Lockheed Martin focuses only on computer science and engineering, covering only nine majors. You will likely have to look elsewhere if you are interested in another STEM subject.
Our final thoughts — what do we think of the program?
If you’re a U.S. citizen and are studying/planning to study computer science and engineering, then there’s no reason why you shouldn’t apply for the Lockheed Martin STEM Scholarship Program! It’s prestigious, offers a significant grant ($10,000) that is renewable, does not have a restrictive GPA requirement, and considers you as a potential employee. We also appreciate that it is open to undergraduate students and that the company has demonstrated its commitment to diversity and inclusion principles when awarding scholarships.
That being said, the scholarship may not be for you if you plan on studying a discipline other than computer science and engineering. The selection committee may overlook you even if you have good grades but do not demonstrate sufficient participation in extracurricular activities and holding leadership roles.
What else does Lockheed Martin offer?
In January 2020, Lockheed Martin launched its Vocational Scholarship Program, open to students of all ages (must be at least a high school senior or have a GED) who want to undergo skills-based training in engineering, technology, and advanced manufacturing. The company awards $5,000 to up to 150 winners. Previous recipients have undergone training in computer science, mechanics, and engineering.
Bonus — the Lumiere Research Scholar Program
If you are interested in doing university-level research in computer science and engineering, then you could also consider applying to the Lumiere Research Scholar Program, a selective online high school program for students founded with researchers at Harvard and Oxford. Last year, over 4000 students applied for 500 spots in the program! You can find the application form here.
Also check out the Lumiere Research Inclusion Foundation, a non-profit research program for talented, low-income students.
Kieran Lobo is a freelance writer from India, who currently teaches English in Spain.
Image Source: Lockheed Martin logo