1 March 2021

AAS CSMA Launches Micro-Grants Program

Neelab Yousafzai

Neelab Yousafzai American Astronomical Society (AAS)

AIP: Jim Gates with students at a past Physics Congress
Photo credit: American Institute of Physics

Through the American Institute of Physics (AIP) 2020 Diversity Action Fund, the AAS Committee on the Status of Minorities in Astronomy (CSMA) is launching the CSMA Micro-Grants Program to sponsor Black, Indigenous, People of Color (BIPOC), and other students who are suffering from the effects of financial scarcity. Yearly through 2023, the program will offer 10 one-time grants of $500 each to support BIPOC undergraduates to pay graduate school application fees, GRE testing fees, virtual conference registrations, or to purchase textbooks and research supplies. The AAS CSMA is committed to supporting and mentoring BIPOC college students interested in pursuing a career in the astronomical sciences. The 2021 Micro-Grants Program will open on 1 April (12:00 am ET) and close on 14 June (11:59 pm ET).

Eligibility Requirements

You do not have to be a member of the AAS to apply for the CSMA Micro-Grants Program. Undergraduates pursuing a bachelor's degree or equivalent are welcome to apply; graduate students are not eligible. Students must have plans to apply to graduate school programs in astronomy or physics. Note that there are restrictions on how the funds are utilized; these will be communicated to recipients along with their awards.

Administrator: Dr. Carlos J. Vargas (CSMAgrant@aas.org


The application deadline is 14 June 2021. Applications and all supporting materials should be submitted electronically using the OpenWater platform. 

Application Requirements 

  • A description of academic situation and aspirations
  • A description of financial needs
  • A description of college and career readiness (i.e., how will this grant assist?)
  • A list of institutions to which the student is planning to apply

Apply for a CSMA Micro-Grant (1 April to 14 June)