Funding & Scholarships

Department of Social Work Scholarships

College and graduate school are cost-prohibitive for many. That’s why the UMD Department of Social Work strives to provide funding for as many students as we can.

Awards typically range from $500 to $1,000 each.  Approximately 60% of our MSW students receive scholarships to help pay for their education.

Don and Sylvia Schmid American Indian Child Welfare Leaders Scholarship

Supports scholars who are interested in social work practice in tribal communities and who are or will be future leaders in American Indian child welfare practice.
Major: Social Work, graduate only
Other preferences: Students interested in career that administers and delivers child welfare services to American Indian communities, both on the reservation and in the urban areas.

Eleanor Kraker Family and Home Scholarship

Awarded to an Education or Social Work student who can demonstrate a commitment to strengthening families.
Major: Education or Social Work
Other preferences: Must demonstrate financial need. Include, in your letter of application, a short paragraph describing your plans/desires to strengthen families.

Peggy L. Scheller Memorial Scholarship

Awarded to students pursuing their Master of Social Work degrees. Must be in good academic standing with interest in rural outreach services.
Major: Social Work, graduate only
Other preferences: Preference will be given to non-traditional students. Applications should include a statement describing career goals and commitment to rural practice.

Tim and Sue Mowbray Scholarship  

Awarded to full-time undergraduate or graduate students working towards a degree offered in the area of Psychology or Social Work.
Major: Psychology or Social Work
Other preferences: Must demonstrate financial need.

Will Dodge Memorial Scholarship

Established to support Social Work students with experience, expertise, and long-term interests in grassroots community organizing.
Major: graduate or undergraduate
Other preferences: Applications should include a statement describing your experience, expertise, and long-term interests in grassroots community organizing.

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Scholarship Opportunities


Internal (University of Minnesota) Scholarship Opportunities

Information about CEHSP scholarships and how to apply.


Graduate School Awards
A limited number of fellowships and scholarships are available through the Graduate School


Professional Education Diversity Fellowship 2018-2019
  • The Professional Education Diversity Fellowship is intended to assist professional degree programs in promoting a diversity of views, experiences, and ideas through the recruitment and support of academically excellent students with diverse ethnic, racial, economic, and educational backgrounds and experiences. Programs are encouraged to consider students from groups that historically have been underrepresented in their disciplines.
  • Eligibility: U.S. citizens and U.S. permanent residents entering a professional-focused degree program at the University of Minnesota for the first time in the 2018-2019 academic year may be nominated by their program director. Recipients must be admitted to a professional education degree program as a degree-seeking student for fall semester 2018. Each program may nominate one student.
Carol E. Macpherson Memorial Scholarship (MSW Students)
  • This scholarship was established in Carol's memory to assist "non-traditional" women in completing their education at the University of Minnesota. Scholarships are one-time awards and range from $1,000-$6,000. Deadline is 4:30pm on the 1st Friday in June. Please visit the Carol E. Macpherson Memorial Scholarship website for eligibility, application process and more detailed information.
Dr. Nancy "Rusty" Barcelo' Scholarship (BSW and MSW Students)
  • This scholarship assists University of Minnesota women students with financial need in completing their education at the University, with special focus on women of color, new immigrants, and first generation college students. Scholarships are one-time awards and range from $1,000-4,000 for the academic year. Deadline is 4:30pm on the 1st Friday in June. Please visit the Dr. Nancy "Rusty" Barceló Scholarship website for eligibility, application process and more detailed information.

External Sources for Scholarship Opportunities

Christine Smith Graduate Studies Scholarship (MSW Students)
  • This scholarship was established for graduate level studies specializing in children and family issues.
Council on Social Work Education
  • Carl A. Scott Memorial Fund (BSW and MSW Students): The components of the Fund includes an annual lecture series given at the annual program meeting, a publication program, and scholarship assistance. Two scholarships in the amount of $500 each are awarded to students who have demonstrated a commitment to work for equity and social justice in social work. Deadline usually beginning of May.
Minnesota Social Service Association
  • MSSA Diversity Scholarship (BSW Students) for $1000 will be given to a student from a diverse background. Scholarship application must be received in the MSSA office usually between the beginning of April and the middle of May.
  • MSSA Graduate Scholarship (MSW Students) is for $1500 and will be given to a graduate student in the human service field. Scholarship application must be received in the MSSA office between the beginning of April and the middle of May.
National Association of Social Work Foundation Fellowship, Scholarship and Research Awards
  • Verne LaMarr Lyons Memorial MSW Scholarship (MSW Students) is awarded to a masters degree candidate in social work who demonstrates an interest in, or has experience with, health/mental health practice and has a commitment to working in the African American community. Deadline usually in March.
  • Consuelo W. Gosnell Memorial MSW Scholarship (MSW Students) is awarded to master degree candidates in social work who have demonstrated a commitment to working with, or who have a special affinity with American Indian/Alaska Native and Hispanic/Latino populations, or in public and voluntary nonprofit agency settings. Deadline usually in March.
Air Force Clinical Social Work Scholarship Program (MSW Students)
  • The Scholarship pays up to two years of academic study for the MSW program. Pays for all tuition, fees, supplies, books, and any special equipment that is required. Also pays a stipend of over $2100 per month.
University of Minnesota GLBTA Awards & Scholarships
  • The GLBTA Programs Office awards and scholarships are open to all five University of Minnesota campuses (Crookston, Duluth, Morris, Rochester and Twin Cities). The GLBTA Student Scholarship Award (BSW and MSW Students) awards between $1,000-3,000 every academic year. GLBTA Leadership Awards (BSW or MSW students)


The White House Fellows program (MSW Students):

This nonpartisan program is designed to provide emerging leaders an opportunity to experience the process of governing the nation while working alongside public servants at the highest levels of the Federal Government. The President's Commission on White House Fellowships chooses 11-19 professional men and women to spend a year in Washington, D.C. learning about public service and leadership. Fellows are placed in the offices of Cabinet Secretaries, senior White House staff, and other high-level Executive Branch officials. In addition, they regularly meet in roundtable discussions with renowned leaders from the private and public sectors and travel domestically and internationally to study U.S. policy in action.

Post-MSW Fellowship (MSW Students)

Opportunity through the University Health Services at the University of California, Berkeley. Seeking two qualified applicants for the joint Fellowship in the Counseling and Psychological Services and Social Services units. Fellowships are full-time (40 hours per week) for a twelve month period. The stipend for the fellowship is $26,500 for the year. Applicants must have a master's degree in social work from an accredited institution.

Judd Fellowships (MSW Students)

Designed to support the continued internationalization of the University of Minnesota by providing critical assistance to students enrolled in masters and professional degree programs, and to increase opportunities for students to study, undertake internships, and conduct research projects abroad.

Minority Fellowship Program (Doctoral Students): 

Provides mentorship and training to ethnical minority social work professionals, preparing them for leadership roles in mental health research and in the delivery of mental health services. MFP accomplishes this by supporting students in completing their doctoral degrees in the field of social work. 

Policy Research Inc.

Policy Research, Inc (PRI) is pleased to announce a new, federally-funded stipend program for graduate-level research, the Disability Determination Process (DDP) Small Grant Program (MSW Students). This one-year stipend program will allow graduate students to conduct supervised independent research on improving disability determination processes.  This grant program will award $10,000 stipends to graduate students to conduct research on improving disability determination processes.

The Paul & Daisy Soros Fellowships for New Americans (BSW Seniors or MSW Students)

Hungarian immigrants and American philanthropists, Paul and Daisy Soros, established their fellowship program for New Americans. At the time of their selection, fellows must be college seniors or early in the graduate programs for which they request support. Fellows can study in any degree-granting program in any field at any university in the United States. 

Loan Forgiveness Programs

The National Health Service Corps Loan Repayment Program (Licensed Health Care Providers)  provides $60,000 (or the outstanding balance of qualifying student loans if it is less than $50,000), tax free, to mental health clinicians in exchange for two years of service at an approved site in a Health Professional Shortage Area.

The Health Resources and Service Administration (HRSA) is preparing a second funding opportunity for the Mental and Behavioral Health Education and Training Grants (MBHET) program (BSW and MSW Students). Updates on the status of this funding opportunity may be obtained by visiting the HHS Grants Forecast website (select "HRSA" from the choice of agencies) and signing up to receive e-mails on new program details. The MBHET is designed to enhance mental and behavioral health care services by increasing the number of professionally prepared mental and behavioral health providers, including social workers.

The Indian Health Service's Loan Repayment Program (BSW and MSW Students) offers loan repayment for graduate and undergraduate educational loans for health professionals in return for full-time clinical service in Indian health programs. Social workers are eligible for the program.

Federal Student Aid Loan Forgiveness for Public Service Employees (MSW Students): Through the College Cost Reduction and Access Act of 2007, Congress created the Loan Forgiveness for Public Service Employees Program. The new program provides for the cancellation of the remaining balance due on eligible federal student loans after the borrower has made 120 monthly payments on those loans under certain repayment plans while employed in certain public service fields.

NASW's Loan Forgiveness for Social Workers (MSW Students) has information on loan forgiveness programs available to Social Workers.

Student Loan Borrower Assistance (BSW and MSW Students): National Consumer Law Center's Student Loan Borrower Assistance Project is a resource for borrowers, their families, and advocates representing student loan borrowers. This site is for people who already have student loans and want to know more about their options and rights.

Social Work promotional poster: "What I love about Social Work is how unique and diverse UMD's program is." - Rachel Cross