Collegiate Scholarships

Since its founding by six visionary leaders in 1975, the National Society of Black Engineers, a non-profit 501(c)(3) organization, has grown to more than 32,000 members globally, blossoming into a leading force in the lives of technical professionals and students on college campuses worldwide. The mission of the National Society of Black Engineers is to increase the number of culturally responsible Black engineers who excel academically, succeed professionally, and positively impact the community. In 1989, a NSBE alumni chapter in the Washington, DC Metropolitan area was established and officially chartered in 1990 with 20 members. The National Society of Black Engineers Washington DC Metropolitan Area Professional Chapter (NSBE DC) has been active in the region for over 25 years with a strong indelible legacy of excellence and dedication to our members as well as the local community.

Scholarship Objective

The NSBE DC Professionals would like to recognize outstanding collegiate members who have made special contributions to the community, STEM pipeline development, and technological innovation. The inaugural College Initiative Scholarship Program offers (2) scholarships for NSBE Collegiate members: The Katherine Johnson Trailblazer Scholarship and James West Innovator Scholarship. Each scholarship recipient will be awarded $2,000 which may be used to cover the costs of tuition, fees, books, room and board, and other college-related expenses. Funds will be dispersed in the Fall of 2022.

All applicants must be active NSBE Collegiate members or NSBE Collegiate Affiliate members with a membership ID number, currently enrolled in an undergraduate academic program at a higher educational institution in the greater Washington, DC Metropolitan area. 

Applicants must include copies of their collegiate student resume, (un)official transcript, and two signed letters of recommendation from – (1) a professor or professional mentor that can speak to your leadership skills, and (2) a NSBE Advisor, regional, or chapter leader who can speak to your NSBE involvement and activity. The NSBE DC Collegiate Scholarship Program is currently only valid for undergraduate students’ second through senior years in college; this award is not renewable for subsequent years.


Applicants must be Black/African-American college students completing their freshman, sophomore, junior, or senior year (December graduates ONLY) in the Washington, DC Metropolitan area at one of the following institutions below and at the time of application, scholarship applicants must have completed at least one semester of college and/or have at least one semester remaining.

  • Bowie State University
  • Capitol Technology University
  • Georgetown University
  • George Mason University
  • George Washington University
  • Howard University
  • Northern Virginia Community College
  • Prince George’s Community College
  • United States Naval Academy
  • University of the District of Columbia
  • University of Maryland College Park

Application Information

Application Process

The NSBE DC Katherine Johnson Trailblazer Scholarship and James West Innovator Scholarship Application is available at the top of this page or here.

Incomplete or late applications will not be considered for the scholarship.

Should there be questions in regards to completing the application, please contact

Application Deadline

The NSBE DC Katherine Johnson Trailblazer Scholarship and James West Innovator Scholarship application(s) are due Monday, April 17, 2024

  • Electronic submissions must be received by 11:59 PM EST on Monday, April 17, 2024 to be considered. 
  • Supplemental information, including letters of recommendation and transcripts, can be submitted electronically (prefered) or mailed to NSBE DC at the address listed below. Letters must be postmarked before or on April 17, 2024 to be considered.

Recommenders, please include the student’s name and item (e.g. letter of recommendation or transcript) in the subject line. Submissions must be received by 11:59 PM EST on April 17, 2024. 

For electronic submissions, the supplemental information should be saved in one of the following formats (pdf, docx, or jpg; however, PDF is preferred) and submitted directly through the application form, or emailed to

Mailing Address:

National Society of Black Engineers (NSBE) Professionals Washington D.C. Metropolitan Area Chapter
Attn: CI Scholarship Committee 
P.O. Box 2955 Washington, DC 20013

Scholarship Application Criteria

General Information:
  • Name & Contact Information
  • College/University
  • Declared Major
  • GPA
  • NSBE Membership or Affiliate Membership ID Number
  • (Un)official Transcript
  • (2) Essay Submissions
    • Each essay must be 500 words or less
  • College Resume
    • Showcase professional work, extracurricular and/or NSBE activity, community service, awards and certifications, internships, etc.
  • (2) Letters of recommendation
    • One (1) letter from a professor or professional mentor that can speak of your leadership skills
    • One (1) letter from a NSBE advisor, regional or chapter leader that can speak to your NSBE involvement


For questions regarding the NSBE DC Katherine Johnson Trailblazer Scholarship and James West Innovator Scholarship, please contact NSBE DC Professionals College Initiative Chair at, or the CI Scholarship Committee at


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