While most people are familiar with scholarships, you may not know that there are specific programs and entities that offer scholarships for women. Employers and society are being pushed to close the gap between the amount of men and women in the workforce and, as such, there are many incentives to help advance these goals. Not only do they need more women in the working world, but they specifically need more women in higher-ranking, and higher-paying positions; more women in leadership.

Offering scholarships for women is one way that schools are trying to also close the gap between the number of men and women who receive a higher education. The latest data actually reflects that there are currently more women than there are men attending institutions of higher education. The higher the education that is being sought, most often, the greater the chances are of receiving financial assistance and receiving more of it the higher you go.

There are specific industries in fact in which women are underrepresented and it is harder to attract top talent because there aren’t as many women in these industries. These industries are predominantly STEM or science, technology, engineering, and math, which have been notoriously male dominated industries. As such women who excel in these areas have even more opportunities and greater chances at getting scholarships that are for women because these industries are trying to attract more female talent.

One of the cultural norms that is being challenged is that women often stop working when they have children to raise them and to care for the family and the home. There are even scholarships for women that encourage those who have left the workforce, but whose kids have grown and left the house, and they are now seeking to reenter the working world, to go back to college and either obtain their degree, or even to get a graduate degree to be able to reenter the working world in a higher paid and/or ranking position.

There are two primary different types of scholarships for women that they can apply for. One of them is based on a demonstrated financial need that makes them eligible to apply for financial assistance. There are others that are based on merit, either something that they have achieved or something that they are trying to achieve. They both present excellent opportunities to aid in the cost of higher education. Some women even choose to use a combination of both types.

There are plenty of scholarships for women available varying from industry-specific opportunities to those based on merit, and or need. The goal being to try to bring more women into the working world to close the gaps that exist between genders across both pay and rank across the public and the private sector thus presenting opportunities to try to ease the process for women attempting to achieve a higher education. Make sure that when you are attempting to identify and apply for scholarships for women, you look into specific industries, needs-based, and merit-based opportunities to ensure that you are able to take advantage of the resources available to you.