STEM-ACT Scholarship Program

Chemistry students in a lab wearing eye protection and aprons.

What is STEM-ACT?

STEM-ACT is a program that provides scholarship support for Westfield State University STEM (Biology, Chemistry, General Science, or Mathematics) secondary education students that are passionate about social justice and advancing STEM education. Students that are selected to become STEM-ACT Scholars will become part of our community of practice, which includes teacher candidates, teachers from high-need school districts, and WSU faculty. STEM-ACT Scholars receive scholarship support, testing support, and will be part of a community that seeks to make STEM a more equitable space in Massachusetts. 

STEM-ACT is funded by the National Science Foundation (NSF) Noyce Program, which addresses the need to prepare and retain highly effective mathematics and science teachers and teacher leaders in high-need school districts. STEM-ACT Scholars will be participants in a community of practice that will support their training and retention in the program and as in-service teachers in Massachusetts high-need school districts.   

Scholarship and Benefits

  • Scholarship support of $12,000 a year for the junior and senior year.
  • Customized wrap-around advising, professional development, and mentoring.
  • Close collaboration with high-need school districts.
  • Be part of a community committed to social justice and supporting STEM education in high-need school districts.
  • Opportunities to attend local, regional, and national conferences.


  • Must be U.S. citizens, U.S. nationals, or permanent resident aliens;
  • Must not have previously served (including concurrent service) as a K-12 teacher;
  • Must be an undergraduate student who has attained at least junior status in a STEM (Biology, Chemistry, General Science, or Mathematics) secondary education major;
  • Must be willing and able to serve as a full-time STEM teacher in a high-need school district anywhere in the US for a total of two years for each full year of a scholarship/stipend received, to be fulfilled within eight years after completing the STEM baccalaureate program;
  • Must meet and maintain a minimum 2.8 GPA and have a 3.0 GPA in their education pedagogical sequence to be eligible for practicum.

Application Requirements

WSU STEM Secondary Education students are encouraged to apply in their sophomore or junior year to be admitted to the program for their junior and senior years. 

Application deadline is June 1, 2024 for Fall 2024.

Nationally, there’s a shortage of highly qualified STEM teachers, but especially in high-needs districts. We’re anticipating that providing students with a stronger background in culturally sustaining practices, social justice, and education will help to increase retention in their teacher roles in high-need districts.

Dr. Shannon Gleason, Assistant Professor of Education

Haven't yet Applied to WSU?

Take the next step to become eligible for the STEM-ACT Program and apply to a STEM Education major!

Questions regarding STEM-ACT? Reach out to a member of the STEM-ACT team!