Scholarships for Underrepresented Groups – Access to quality education plays a pivotal role in shaping the future of individuals and societies. However, the journey towards higher education often presents significant challenges for underrepresented students in India.
These students, who may belong to marginalized communities, face financial constraints that hinder their pursuit of academic excellence. Recognizing the need to bridge this gap, numerous scholarships have been established to empower and uplift these deserving individuals.
Scholarships for underrepresented groups in India offer a lifeline, enabling access to educational opportunities that might otherwise remain out of reach. These scholarships not only provide financial assistance but also serve as a catalyst for social transformation, empowering individuals to break free from the cycle of socio-economic marginalization and create a better future for themselves and their communities.
From government initiatives to privately funded foundations, a diverse range of scholarships cater to the specific needs of different underrepresented groups. Scholarships targeted towards Scheduled Castes (SC), Scheduled Tribes (ST), Other Backward Classes (OBC), LGBTQ+minority communities, among others, aim to address historical inequalities and promote inclusive education.
In this article, we will explore some of the scholarships for underrepresented groups in India. We will discuss the eligibility criteria, benefits, and application processes of these scholarships for underrepresented groups, offering a comprehensive guide to help aspiring students navigate the opportunities that await them.
Scholarships for Underrepresented Groups – Detailed List
Scholarships for Underrepresented Groups – Scholarships Studies in India to Transgender Students
In an effort to promote inclusivity and support the education of transgender individuals in India, the Ministry of Social Justice & Empowerment has taken a significant step forward. The ministry has introduced scholarships specifically designed to provide financial assistance to transgender students studying in classes IX and above.
By extending support to transgender students at critical stages of their educational journey, these scholarships aim to reduce dropout rates and facilitate a smooth transition from elementary to secondary education and beyond, up to post-graduation.
In order to be eligible for the scholarships, the following criteria must be met:
- Transgender Certificate: The student must possess a Transgender Certificate issued through the National Portal for Transgender Persons of the Ministry of Social Justice & Empowerment. This certificate serves as proof of transgender identity.
- Indian Nationals: The scholarships are open to Indian nationals only. Non-Indian citizens are not eligible for this particular scheme.
- Non-Receipt of Other Scholarships: The candidate should not be receiving any other central or state government funded pre-matric/post-matric scholarship. If the student accepts another scholarship or stipend, they will no longer be eligible for this particular scheme.
- Exceptions for Specific Purposes: While the candidate cannot accept another scholarship or stipend, they are allowed to accept free lodging, a grant, or ad-hoc monetary help from the state government or any other source specifically for the purchase of books, equipment, or meeting the expenses of board and lodging. This additional support can be accepted alongside the scholarship amount received under this scheme.
- Regular, Full-Time Student: The candidate should be enrolled as a regular, full-time student. This implies that the student should be attending classes on a full-time basis, without any breaks or interruptions in their educational journey.
- Government School or Recognized Institution: The student must be studying in a government school or in a school recognized by the government, or a central/state board of secondary education. Alternatively, if pursuing higher education, the candidate should be enrolled in a government college/university or a college/university recognized by the government.
- Scholarship Amount: An amount of INR 13,500 will be provided as either a post-matric or pre-matric scholarship, depending on the eligibility criteria and the stage of education of the transgender student.
- Aadhaar-Linked Bank Account: Students are strongly encouraged to have an Aadhaar-linked bank account for seamless payment processing. When applying for the scholarship, it is essential that the bank account details provided match the name specified in the Transgender Certificate issued through the National Portal for Transgender Persons of the Ministry of Social Justice & Empowerment. This ensures accurate and efficient disbursement of scholarship funds through the Aadhaar Payment Bridge System.
The application period for the scholarships for transgender students of the Ministry of Social Justice & Empowerment is from March 1 to April 30 of each year. The next application period will begin on March 1, 2024.
Scholarships for Underrepresented Groups – Post Matric Scholarships Scheme for Minorities
The Post Matric Scholarships Scheme for Minorities is one of the scholarships for underrepresented groups, which is launched by the Ministry of Minority Affairs, Government of India. It aims to provide financial support to students belonging to minority communities in pursuing post-secondary education.
- Minority Communities: The scholarship is open to students belonging to minority communities recognized by the Government of India, including Muslims, Christians, Sikhs, Buddhists, Jains, and Parsis.
- Educational Qualification: The student must have secured admission or be enrolled in a recognized post-secondary institution, such as a college or university and must not have scored less than 50% marks.
- Family Income: The annual family income of the applicant should not exceed INR 2 lakh.
- Admission and Tuition Fee for Class 11 & 12: INR 7,000/- per annum for both hostellers and day scholars
- Admission and Course/Tuition Fee for Technical and Vocational Courses of 11 and 12 Level (Courses of One or More Year of Duration): INR 10,000/- per annum for both hostellers and day scholars
- Admission and Tuition Fee for Undergraduate (UG) & Postgraduate (PG) Level: INR 3,000/- per annum for both hostellers and day scholars
- Maintenance Allowance for Class 11 & 12 (Including Technical & Vocational Course): INR 380/- per month for hostellers and INR 230/- per month for day scholars
The application period for the Post Matric Scholarships Scheme for Minorities is from February 1 to March 31 of each year.
Scholarships for Underrepresented Groups – Top Class Education Scheme for SC Students
The Top Class Education Scheme for SC Students is also one of the scholarships for underrepresented groups. It has been introduced with the aim of recognizing and promoting quality education among students belonging to Scheduled Castes (SCs) in India. This scheme provides comprehensive financial support to SC students who wish to pursue studies beyond the 12th class.
Under this scheme, eligible SC students can receive full financial assistance to pursue their education in institutions that have been notified by the Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment. The scheme aims to ensure that SC students have access to higher education and can pursue professional or technical courses of their choice.
- Eligibility Based on Family Income: SC students with a total annual family income from all sources up to INR 8 lakh are eligible for the scholarship. They must have secured admission in a full-time prescribed course in any of the notified institutions based on the general selection criteria of the institution.
- Income Declaration: Self-employed parents/guardians should provide a certificate issued by a revenue officer not below the rank of Tehsildar. Employed parents/guardians should obtain an income certificate from their employer. If there are additional sources of income, a consolidated certificate from a revenue officer should be obtained.
- Class 10 Qualification: Students who have studied Class 10 from any central/state/municipal government or government-aided schools (except KVS schools) automatically qualify under the scheme. A certificate in this regard may be uploaded.
- Reservation for SC Girl Students: Thirty percent (30%) of the slots allotted to the institution will be reserved for eligible SC girl students based on their inter-se merit. In the absence of a sufficient number of girl students, the slots may be transferred to eligible boy students based on their inter-se merit.
- Limitation on Benefit: The scheme does not provide benefits to more than two siblings in a family. Students must submit an affidavit to certify that they are not the third sibling availing the benefit under the scheme.
- Scholarship Termination: The scholarship will be terminated if the student fails to get promoted to the next semester/class. However, once the student is promoted to the next class, the scholarship will be released automatically.
The scholarship amount is INR 86,000 in the first year of study and INR 41,000 in every subsequent year. The scholarship amount will be used to meet the expenses of tuition fees, living expenses, books and stationery, computer/laptop of reputed brand with accessories like UPS and printer, etc.
The application period for the Top Class Education Scheme for SC Students was from June 1 to July 31, 2022. The scholarship is currently closed for further applications. It is expected to be launched by July, 2023.
Scholarships for Underrepresented Groups – AICTE – Saksham Scholarship Scheme for Specially-Abled Student (Technical Degree/Diploma)
The Saksham Scholarship Scheme is one of the scholarships for underrepresented groups which aims to aid specially-abled students who are admitted to the first year of technical degree/diploma courses in any of the AICTE-approved institutions. The scholarship is funded by the Ministry of Education and is implemented by the All India Council for Technical Education (AICTE).
To be eligible for the Saksham Scholarship Scheme, students must meet the following criteria:
- Have a disability of not less than 40%.
- Have a family income of not more than INR 8 lakh per annum.
- Have been admitted to the first year of a technical degree/diploma course in any of the AICTE-approved institutions.
The amount of the Saksham Scholarship is INR 50,000 per annum. This amount is paid in two installments, one in the first semester and the other in the second semester. The scholarship is awarded for the entire duration of the course, subject to the student maintaining a satisfactory academic record.
The application period for the Saksham Scholarship Scheme is usually from January to March of each year. The application process is online and can be completed through the National Scholarship Portal (NSP).
Scholarships for Underrepresented Groups – Official Websites
|Scholarships for Underrepresented Groups||Websites|
|Scholarships Studies in India to Transgender Students||transgender.dosje.gov.in/Applicant/Registration/DisplayForm2|
|Post Matric Scholarships Scheme for Minorities||scholarships.gov.in|
|Top Class Education Scheme for SC Students||scholarships.gov.in|
|AICTE – Saksham Scholarship Scheme for Specially-Abled Student (Technical Degree/Diploma)||scholarships.gov.in|
Scholarships for Underrepresented Groups – Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
Who is eligible to apply for the Top Class Education Scheme for SC Students?
Scheduled Caste (SC) students who have passed Class 10 and have a total annual family income from all sources up to INR 8 lakh are eligible for the scholarship.
What expenses does the Top Class Education Scheme cover for SC students?
The scholarship covers various expenses, including tuition fees, living expenses, books, and other necessary requirements related to the course.
Which minority communities are covered under the Post Matric Scholarships Scheme?
The scheme covers students from minority communities recognized by the government, including Muslims, Christians, Sikhs, Buddhists, Jains, and Parsis.
What is the application period for the Post Matric Scholarships Scheme for Minorities?
The application period for the Post Matric Scholarships Scheme for Minorities is from February 1 to March 31 of each year.
Is there any income criterion for eligibility under the Post Matric Scholarships Scheme for Minorities?
Yes, the scheme has an income criterion. The annual family income of the applicant should not exceed INR 2 lakh.