Partnership Introduces $100,000 Grant Program for Women Entering STEM Fields Now Accepting Applications

Universal Technical Institute

As announced earlier this year, as part of its effort to diversify the workforce and increase recruitment of women into the skilled trades, Universal Technical Institute, Inc. teamed up with Ignite Worldwide to provide $100,000 in tuition grants for female and female-identifying students interested in pursuing a technical education at UTI and careers in STEM-related fields.

Applications for these grants are open now and will be accepted until April 29, 2022. The review process will begin in early May, with winners announced on May 18, 2022.

“We’re constantly hearing from employers about the demand for more trained technicians – particularly women, who have traditionally been underrepresented in STEM and skilled-trade sectors,” said Universal Technical Institute CEO Jerome Grant. “We hope this scholarship opportunity will open doors for women who may be considering careers in these high-tech, high-skilled fields and encourage them to pursue that route with a technical education from UTI. We’re proud to partner with Ignite Worldwide on this important initiative. Together, we can drive more qualified workers into these growing industries and contribute to the diverse workforce employers and our economy demand.”

Currently, women represent just over 1 in 4 STEM workers in the U.S. Research by both McKinsey and Harvard Business School has found gender-diverse employers tend to be more productive and exhibit stronger financial performance relative to their non-diverse competitors. Workforce demand in the transportation sector remains strong nationally, with the Bureau of Labor Statistics estimating there are approximately 100,000 total new openings each year for automotive, diesel, and collision repair technicians nationally, including net employment changes and net replacements.

Students who would like to apply for a UTI/Ignite Worldwide tuition grant must complete an application, including an essay-based component that may be completed either as a traditional written response or 90-second selfie-style video. UTI and Ignite Worldwide will review all applications and award tuition grants as follows:

  • First Place: $25,000
  • Second Place: $15,000
  • Third Place: $10,000
  • Fourth through 28th Place: $2,000

Grants may be used toward programs at any of UTI’s campuses located across Arizona, California, Florida, Illinois, New Jersey, North Carolina, Pennsylvania, and Texas.

To be eligible for the program, applicants must:

  • Be female, non-binary or identify as female
  • Be a junior or senior in high school at the time of application submission
  • Participate in at least one IGNITE Worldwide event – either virtual or live – and provide the name and location of that event
  • Provide proof of high school diploma or GED prior to starting school at UTI
  • Provide written consent forms from any other individual(s) depicted in video (if applicable)
  • Provide authorization from a legal guardian (if the applicant is under the age of 18)

The IGNITE Worldwide Program works to directly address the gender and racial disparity experienced in STEM fields. By reaching the students at a young age, during the school day, we are able to encourage participating students to explore non-traditional STEM opportunities at their school, after graduation, and beyond.

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