Engineering Visionary Scholarship Initiative

About the Engineering Visionary Scholarships

The Grainger College of Engineering is committed to ensuring that, when students graduate, they are prepared to take a leadership role in our increasingly global, interconnected and technologically sophisticated society. In this time of unprecedented need, the Engineering Visionary Scholarship Initiative is an essential vehicle to recruit and retain the world’s best young engineers.

These large renewable scholarships provide an affordable Illinois education to some of the brightest and most highly motivated students. Launched in 2013 with a $30 million gift from the Grainger Foundation and supported by more than 1,800 visionaries, more than 40 percent of scholarships awarded to students in The Grainger College of Engineering today are Engineering Visionary Scholarships.

Scholarships work. They bring amazing engineers to Illinois.

Even though Engineering is a top-ranked program, we are losing some of the best and brightest students because we are not able to offer the same scholarships as other universities. For many families, scholarships often are the deciding factor.

  • Our students have told us that cost is the top reason they decline admission to Illinois.
  • The highest-achieving students accept admission 15 percent of the time. If offered our largest scholarship — the Engineering Visionary Scholarship — that acceptance rate jumps to 68 percent.
  • Scholarships significantly impact a student’s enrollment decision. Studies indicate that students are seeking $10,000-15,000 per year in scholarship support.
  • In 2016, the College awarded $4.3 million in scholarships to undergraduate students. Although this is a large number, it only serves about 11 percent of our student population.

Investing in the Next Generation

Life-changing scholarships are an expensive yet worthwhile proposition, and we know not everyone can afford to establish a scholarship like this on their own. This is how we know this scholarship works for all involved:

  • We have raised $52 million of our $100 million dollar goal thanks to the help from our generous alumni and friends.
  • Support is greater in numbers. More than 1,800 donors have given to this initiative.
  • This initiative has created more than 500 additional scholarships for our most deserving undergraduate students.
  • We have increased the number of scholarships the College awards on an annual basis by 40 percent.

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