Girl child education in India is promoting heavily by the central and state government, yet, the truth is that there is a long way to cover before India reaches full literacy rate among the female population. From the free distribution of books, bicycles to special allowances, the girl students are being provided with various benefits, and the scholarship programs by public and private institutes contribute to promoting education in girls.
Unfortunately, gender biases in education are a bitter fact. Families with limited financial resources prefer to invest money in a male childâ€™s education than in the girl(s) of the family. Due to lack of resources and motivation, even the bright girl students become drop-outs from school. In this scenario, scholarships play a vital role in the lives of girl students as they can pursue their education and fulfill their dreams.
There some prominent scholarships in India that support girl child education, and help them in continuing their education.
Scholarship for Minority Community Girls: Several initiatives promote girl child education in minority communities. One such prominent scholarship is the Begum Hazrat Mahal National Scholarship. This programme offers monetary help to the girl students of minority communities studying in classes 9 to 12. The initiative is also known as the Maulana Azad Scholarship was started by the foundation in the year 2003-04. Since its inception, more than 8 lakh girl students have received the scholarship. The girl students with 50 percent or above marks in the previous class with family income less than 2 lakh rupees per annum can apply for the scholarship. The benefits include receiving tuition fees and other assistance.
Scholarship for Single Girl Child in the family: There are several scholarship programs run for meritorious single girl students, who are the only child of their parents. Some of the prominent scholarships are CBSE Merit Scholarship Schemes for Single girl child. This scholarship is given to the students who have passed CBSE class 10th with 60 percent marks or above. A scholarship amount of Rs.500 is given to the girl child.
Scholarship for weaker section of the society: For girls coming from economically weaker section of the society, a scholarship program run by the Science Olympiad Foundation for students from class 1 to 10. The selection is done based on recommendations given by schools across the country.
Scholarship for pursuing graduation in science stream: The scholarship program of Lâ€™Oreal India for Young Women in Science supports the girl students who wish to pursue science after passing class 12. The girl students with at least 85percent and above are eligible for this scholarship. The annual income of the family should be less than 4 lakh and the applicant should be under 19 years of age. Dr. Reddy Foundation Sashakt Scholarship also supports girl students of economically weaker and rural backgrounds who want to pursue an education in the science stream. For undergraduate studies, this program offers help to the girl students to get access to some of the best science institutes in the country.
Thereâ€™s another scholarship by DRDO that encourages girl students to opt for under-graduate/post-graduate courses in Aerospace Engineering/Aeronautical Engineering/Space Engineering and Rocketry/Aircraft Engineering/ Avionics. To get a scholarship in these courses, they need to fulfill the required academic requirements.
Launched with an objective to support girl students in STEM, the scholarship program of Rolls Royce Unnati Scholarships for Women Engineering Students, give support through a scholarship to the meritorious girl students who are studying in AICTE approved engineering colleges. The student must have obtained more than 60 percent marks in classes 10 and 12.
For girl students pursuing post-graduation: Post Graduate Indira Gandhi Scholarship for girl child is awarded under an initiative of UGC. The applicant is required to take admission to a full-time masterâ€™s degree program.
There are plenty of government and private scholarship programs for girl students, who belong to rural and economically weak backgrounds. There is a scholarship program that allows students to get a monthly scholarship by taking a simple quiz on their smartphones. AuroScholar is a scholarship program that provides equal opportunity to all the girl-child students to win scholarship amounts.
The objective of most of the scholarship programs is to empower girl students to continue their education and not give up due to financial constraints. The monthly scholarship program, AuroScholar, aims to make students lifelong learners. For most of the scholarship programs, the applicant needs to take an entrance test or fulfill certain eligibility criteria. In the monthly micro scholarship program, no set terms of eligibility are required. The monthly scholarship is equally available to all the girl students and provides an equal opportunity to grow in academic life.