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Opportunities From SMART Grant

The Federal Science and Mathematics Access Grant to Retain Talent (SMART) is offered by the United States Department of Education to students eligible for the Pell Grant and also enrolled in the third or fourth year of a bachelor’s degree program.

The student, in addition, must also be enrolled in a study program with a major in science, mathematics, technology, engineering, a foreign language deemed essential to national security needs, or a liberal arts program that qualifies as authorized by the Secretary of State for Education.

Students deemed eligible for a SMART grant receive $4,000 per year from the program and, especially for students from disadvantaged backgrounds, the award of a SMART grant does not count towards other student scholarships, whether federal or state. , to which the student may be eligible or beneficiaries. The SMART grant program itself was launched specifically with the aim of persuading and motivating more students to take degree programs deemed in high demand.


In order to apply for a SMART Grant, the student’s first task is to complete and submit their FAFSA. From the information provided by the student on this form, colleges will identify the students most likely to qualify for a scholarship based on a number of contributing factors, such as their eligibility for a Pell Grant, the program studies chosen and their grade point average.


The SMART scholarship itself does not require the student to apply separately. The grant funds themselves are sent directly to the student’s college by the Department of Education. The college will then allocate the funds directly to the affected students.

Regarding some of the specific eligibility requirements for qualifying for a SMART award, a student must be eligible to receive Pell funds and must be enrolled in their third or fourth academic year of a four-year course.

They should also ensure that they maintain a cumulative grade point average of 3.0 throughout their academic career and should take a course as mentioned earlier.

Finally, the student must, of course, be a US citizen. Alternatively (or in addition, as the case may be), students may wish to see what other federal grants for students are available to them in order to maximize their potential educational benefits even before school begins.

How Do I Know If I Am Eligible?

To be eligible for a National SMART Grant, you must meet each of the following qualifications:

  • Be a junior or senior going up to college
  • Be a major in the physical, life or computer sciences, mathematics, technology or engineering, or in a foreign language deemed essential to national security
  • Be enrolled in school full time
  • Take at least one course required for your major in the semester in which the SMART scholarship is awarded
  • Have and maintain a minimum GPA of 3.0 during the SMART grant award period

What Is The Process For Requesting And Awarding This Assistance?

Pre-Application Procedure

Coordination prior to request is not applicable. Environmental impact information is not required for this program. This program is excluded from coverage under E.O. 12372.

Application Procedure

This program is excluded from coverage under OMB Circular No. A-102. This program is excluded from coverage under OMB Circular No. A-110. The student completes a Free Federal Student Aid Application and submits it to the agency indicated on the form. Students can apply using paper application, electronic application, or via the Internet.

The Department of Education calculates the student’s eligibility for assistance, and the agency to which the student submitted the request sends a notification to the student of their eligibility for assistance. The student sends this notification to the establishment of his choice in order to have his scholarship calculated.

Award Procedure

Schools act as disbursement agents for the Ministry of Education. The institution the student attends calculates and disburses the SMART scholarships, using a payment schedule developed by the Department of Education that determines the amount of the scholarship based on the amount of funding available and the estimated number of recipients.

Education Support By Smart Grant
Education Support By Smart Grant

Time Limit

Contact the headquarters or regional office, as appropriate, for application deadlines.

Time of Approval / Disapproval Decision

About 2 to 4 weeks.


An institution, on the basis of additional documents, may decide that an applicant is self-sufficient, even though, according to standard criteria, the applicant would normally be considered financially dependent on his parents.

An institution may adjust on a case-by-case basis a student’s data elements used to calculate their CEF and cost of tuition due to unusual circumstances documented by the institution.


Students who applied in the previous award year may be eligible to complete a paper or electronic renewal application that contains preprinted student data and only requires students to update certain information.

How Are The Proposals Selected?

Not applicable.

How Can The Assistance Be Used?

The student must be a U.S. citizen who has been accepted for enrollment and made satisfactory progress at an eligible higher education institution. Eligible schools can be non-profit public or private higher education institutions (such as colleges, universities, vocational technical schools, hospital nursing schools) and for-profit institutions (owners).

SMART Grant For Students
SMART Grant For Students

Eligible men aged at least 18 and born after December 31, 1959 can only benefit from assistance if they have registered with the Selective Service. Graduate students and students who have already obtained a bachelor’s degree are not eligible for assistance.

Recipients must demonstrate their need in accordance with Part F of the Higher Education Act 1965, as amended, and must be eligible for a Federal Pell Grant.

What Are The Requirements After Getting This Opportunity?


The institutions will be required to provide reports, periodically, on the disbursement of funds, as well as to provide any other reports required by the Ministry. No report is required from students.

Cash reports are not applicable. Progress reports are not applicable. Expense reports are not applicable. Performance monitoring is not applicable.


This program is excluded from coverage under OMB Circular No. A-133. Annual audits will be carried out.


All records relating to the eligibility of each SMART grant recipient and all tax management records must be retained by the institution for a period of 3 years or until an acceptable audit has been performed, depending on the latest date. Selected students will see their application information verified.

How Much Is The SMART Grant Worth?

The SMART scholarship is worth up to $4,000 for each of the last two years of undergraduate study. The amount of the Pell Grant combined with the SMART Grant cannot exceed the total cost of your participation, which includes tuition, fees, room and meals.

Congress has allocated a fixed amount for the SMART grant program. Therefore, if the number of qualified applicants exceeds expectations, each individual award may be reduced to meet the increased demand. In other words, you are not guaranteed to receive the full $4,000, even if you qualify.