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Application, Requirements, and Criteria

SPIE Education and Travel Scholarships

SPIE offers Optics and Photonics Education Scholarships and Travel Scholarships for students located anywhere in the world, from high school (pre-university/secondary) through graduate school and PhD programs, who are studying or planning to study optics, photonics or related field.

Students are not eligible to receive multiple SPIE scholarships for the same academic level. For example, if you received a scholarship during your undergraduate studies and have not completed your undergraduate studies, you are not eligible to re-apply. However, if you have completed your undergraduate studies and you are now pursuing a master's degree, you are eligible to re-apply for another scholarship.

Students are not eligible to receive two scholarships in the same year.

Cycle 2 Travel Scholarship (OPEN)

SPIE offers Travel Scholarships to its student members from undergraduate, graduate or PhD programs who are planning to attend conferences and exhibitions organized by SPIE. The Travel Scholarship funds cannot be used for other purposes. This scholarship is not intended to support other conferences that are not organized by SPIE.

If you received an Optics and Photonics Education Scholarship or a Cycle 1 Travel Scholarship earlier this year, you are not eligible to apply at this time. If you are applying for other SPIE funds (ie, Student Chapter Officer Travel Grant, Student Author Travel Grant) to attend one of its meetings, you cannot use the Travel Scholarship for the same meeting.

Deadline: 20 September 2016


All Students, both full- and part-time are eligible to apply.

  • You must be a Student Member of SPIE. Standard Student Membership Fee is $20 (US).
  • High school, pre-university, secondary school students will receive a one-year complimentary Student Membership. Fill in the Pre-College Membership Application Form and return to scholarships@spie.org
  • Must be enrolled in an optics or photonics program or related field at an accredited school for the school year beginning in Fall 2016
  • Two recommendations are required. Relatives are not eligible to make recommendations.
  • If you received a previous scholarship, SPIE must have your Annual Scholarship Report on file prior to submitting the application (20 September) and the scholarship application form must show new activities from when you last applied. Annual Scholarship reports are required from all winners.
  • Incomplete applications will not be submitted for consideration.
  • All students will be notified of the results of their application in November/December

Evaluation Criteria

The key criterion in evaluating and ranking applications is the "prospect for long-term contribution that the granting of an award will make to the field of optics, photonics or related field." Need, in and of itself, shall not be considered as a criterion.

All scholarship applications are judged on their own merit, based on the experience and education level of the individual student. High school (pre-university, secondary school), undergraduate, and graduate students will be judged relative to other applicants with similar educational backgrounds.

Optics and Photonics Education Scholarships (Closed)

The Optics and Photonics Education Scholarships are for high school, pre-university, secondary school, undergraduate and graduate students. Postdoctoral students (students who have completed their PhD) are not eligible to apply. The scholarship awards are in varying amounts ranging from $2,000 to $11,000. The Optics and Photonics Education Scholarship generally supports tuition, books, research activities, and other education-related expenses. If awarded the Optics and Photonics Scholarship, funds should be used for the 2016-2017 academic year (Aug 2016-Jul 2017).

Thank you,

The SPIE Scholarship Committee Team