There are many benefits to scholarships, not only for recipients. There are many benefits to a STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Maths)-based business. It is a good business for the local community. However, there are many benefits for STEM businesses.
If you’re thinking about offering a scholarship, here’s why you should and how you can get started.
How Scholarships are Important to STEM Business
STEM companies have the opportunity to provide financial assistance to college students by offering scholarships. Students can benefit from these funds. They may not be able to access funding through other avenues. So, you’re rewarding a deserving student with that ability to receive higher education. This helps them get a college education that was not possible in the past.
While it’s beneficial to help others further their education, companies get to serve the community for branding and reach purposes. These are just a few of the many reasons you should consider offering scholarships.
The scholarships are a way to close the gap between gender and race in STEM career paths. Because of discrimination, many women and people from color have been discouraged by the STEM sector. Microsoft’s study found that only 11% of respondents were satisfied with their STEM career. Women graduate at 7% with a STEM degree in 2016 — compared to 15% of men.
Hispanic workers are highly underrepresented in this field — only 8 % of STEM workersMake up the majority of the workforce. Only 9% of Black people work in STEM.
Businesses that provide scholarships to STEM students can address the complicated issue of gender- and racial disparities in this industry, which is dominated by white men. The best STEM scholarships work because it Women’s empowermentPeople of color can participate in the workforce. It also provides mentorship one-on-one and access to top STEM companies. Lastly, it’s a way for companies to enhance the skills of their future employees. So, it’s a win-win for everyone.
Create Brand Awareness
STEM companies can benefit from scholarship assistance to help them build their reputation. Many students get to meet the company when applying for a scholarship. If the scholarship is given to the entire community, it can lead to similar results. Your STEM business is available to everyone in the local area.
This helps to establish the company’s brand and reputation. Many STEM companies are recognized for their achievements. It helps you get more exposure and opens up opportunities for engagement with potential customers.
A STEM company encourages philanthropy and business growth
Scholarships may be part of social responsibility. Companies can use this opportunity to help the community find new ways of supporting them and to be a role model. Businesses that are STEM-focused on charity can also learn philanthropy from their mentors. They may find that students are grateful when they provide funding. The company may see the benefit and learn how important it is to give back, which could lead them to be open to offering similar opportunities for future students.
Once a community learns about the company’s opportunities they offer, this may help increase product sales and website downloads. This opens up the possibility for the company to acquire new customers as well as open doors for future communication with potential clients.
How to start a scholarship program in your STEM company
These steps will help you to get started with a scholarship program.
1. Find Your Purpose, and Make a Plan
You can use financial planning and structuring to help you create a plan for future considerations. You’ll want to create an outline to eliminate research and development of infeasible costly programs or timetables.
So, your first step is to decide what type of scholarship you’ll be offering and how best to allocate the funds. You might also consider if you’ll use this opportunity to increase tax breaks for your business. Then, you’ll want to determine if your scholarship will be geared specifically toward an underprivileged part of the community.
2. Establish a Timeline
After you’ve established your purpose and how you’ll acquire funding, your next step is to set the launch date. You’ll want to consider which fiscal year and where the taxation will hit it. Also, consider the application process. Is the essay required? What format will the student use to submit an essay? Do they need to apply in person? Or will they use a digital software program?
Because businesses often raise funds through crowdfunding, it takes about a year to plan for scholarship funding. They must also advertise the scholarship to attract applicants. If you are planning to offer scholarships in fall semester, make sure to work out all details during the summer.
3. Determine the Scope of award and method
Sometimes smaller scholarship contributions work best because many students believe larger ones aren’t worth the effort. When they have more applicants, some businesses are more successful. Every other month, $500 scholarships are availableMore than just a few thousand per year.
This all will depend on what your philanthropic objectives, tax requirements, funding strategies, and PR angle that you are trying to maximize. Moreover, you’ll need to determine how to award the scholarship. Is it going to be given from the office or sent out via check? Will you host an event or offer the scholarship?
These are the evaluations you’ll need to consider when launching your scholarship program.
4. Set the Terms
The best students can show intelligence, but they also have the ability to be naive. You need to set the scholarship’s terms to protect your business from inexperience and the students’ behavior. If they’re allowed to obtain a scholarship on bad behavior, it can negatively reflect your company.
For students who want to continue receiving support, consider incorporating conditions. This may not be a problem if the scholarship is only for a single year. Depending on the scope of the award and how highly it’s publicized will determine how strict the terms will be.
Ways STEM Businesses Can Promote A Scholarship Program
Once you’re ready to launch your scholarship, you’ll need to promote it effectively to gain applicants. These are some ways to advertise it.
- Start an email campaign.
- Social media can be used to create targeted advertisements.
- Use media outreach and public relations.
- Create blog content, and do link building.
- Get in touch with counselors or admissions representatives at high schools.
- A landing page and website can be created for scholarships.
- Talk about scholarships with your friends, colleagues, families, and local organizations.
You’ll want to promote your scholarship for many reasons. It can increase the quality of your applicants and help you get more qualified candidates. New scholarships could also be lost among thousands of scholarship programs. You can promote your scholarship with these methods so students stay connected and college is affordable.
Be Good in Your Business
Planning and consideration is key to your success with scholarship results. Each step will be unique, but keep in mind your purpose for helping the community. Your scholarship program will succeed if you are committed to a purposeful cause. In the end, you’re giving students the possibility to receive higher education.
Eleanor is the editor Designerly Magazine. Eleanor served as the blog writer and creative director for a well-known digital marketing agency. She became her own boss in 2018. With her husband, Bear, she lives in Philadelphia.
Enterprise Podcast Network – EPN.