DoD SMART Scholarship 2023 (FAQs, Eligibility, Requirements)

The DoD SMART Scholarship 2023 is now open for undergraduate and graduate students who wish to receive financial aid through an internship. Discover this opportunity and apply. 

In this article, you will identify the value of the DoD SMART Scholarship. Please read on to get a better perspective and understanding of the DoD SMART Scholarship. 

About the DoD SMART Scholarship 

The SMART (Science, Mathematics and Research for Transformation) scholarship program, as funded by the DoD (Department of Defense), combines academic and workforce development opportunities for students in the STEM fields, that is, science, technology, engineering, and mathematics.

The Department of Defense initiated the DoD SMART Scholarship in 2006 to support undergraduate and graduate students obtaining technical degrees in STEM (science, technology, engineering, and mathematics). 

SMART is a civilian scholarship program for the Department of Defense as part of the NDEP (National Defense Education Program), funded by the Office of the Secretary of Defense. 

The program aims to increase the number of civilian scientists and engineers working in the facilities of the Ministry of Defense.

The DoD SMART Scholarship offers grants and tuition to undergraduate, master’s, and doctoral students who have shown an aptitude to excel in STEM fields in disciplines of great value to the DoD.

DoD STEM wishes to inspire, attract and develop remarkable individuals with talents in STEM across the educational sector and advance the current DoD STEM workforce to meet future defense challenges in technology.

Types of DoD SMART Scholarship

The two types of DoD Smart Scholarships include; Retention or Recruitment programs.

1. Recruitment Scholarship: 

The DOD Smart Scholarships 2023 Recruitment scholarships are meant for those without employment in a permanent civilian position by a SMART Sponsoring Facility (SF) at the time of entry.

Individuals who SF employs in internship positions or temporary roles at the time of the scholarship are eligible for the recruitment scholarship.

Recruitment scholars must complete summer internships and do postgraduate work at the sponsorship facility assigned to the DoD. 

2. Retention Scholarship:

This type of DOD Smart Scholarships 2023 is meant for individuals employed in renewable or permanent positions by the SF at the time of the scholarship.

It should be indicated on the SMART application under Work Experience if the retention employment is a full-time permanent or full-time term.

Retention scholars work with their Department of Defense sponsorship facilities to establish a return-to-work program during the summer.

They are retained by their sponsored Department of Defense institution to complete their service period after graduating.

The Department of Defense assists government workers in continuing their studies and careers within the DoD Science and Technology department.

Applicants that fit these descriptions must submit the contact information for their current employer and a letter from their supervisor confirming that they are aware that the applicant seeks financial assistance under the SMART program. 

When Applicants of the DoD SMART Scholarships get accepted into the SMART program, each scholar will be given a copy of the SMART Scholar handbook.

The handbook contains the terms and conditions intended for scholars who have received and accepted their DoD Smart Scholarships.

Who is eligible to apply for the DOD Smart Scholarships 2023? 

The DOD Smart Scholarships 2023 is open from August to December 2023, with financial aid awarded the following spring. Check out the requirements below to ensure you are eligible to apply for this opportunity that can change your life. 

  • Applicants must be citizens of these countries: the United States, United Kingdom, Canada, Australia, or New Zealand. 
  • Candidates must have attained at least 18 years of age as of August 1, 2023. 
  • Applicants require at least a year of undergraduate funding before graduation (from the program’s start date).
  • Interested applicants must be able to finish at least one summer internship (applies only to multi-year scholars). 
  • Applicants must be willing to take on postgraduate employment with the DoD.
  • They must have an excellent academic status with a minimum CGPA of 3.0 on a scale of 4.0. 
  • Candidates must be on course to obtain a bachelor’s or graduate degree in any of the 21 STEM disciplines.
  • Applicants are required to present a fall 2021 transcript or pursue a graduate degree from a regionally accredited college or university in the United States.

Active military personnel who intend to apply for the DOD Smart Scholarships 2023 must be separated or on terminal leave by August 1, 2023.

Reserve and National Guard members can apply for the DOD Smart Scholarships 2023. ROTC participants are not eligible for the DOD Smart Scholarships 2023.

List of the approved DOD SMART Scholarships 2023 Programs

The list of approved STEM fields supported by the DoD SMART Scholarship is as follows:

  • Information Sciences
  • Physics
  • Aeronautical and Astronautical Engineering
  • Operations Research
  • Geosciences
  • Biosciences
  • Industrial and Systems Engineering
  • Oceanography
  • Biomedical Engineering
  • Nuclear Engineering
  • Electrical Engineering
  • Chemical Engineering
  • Naval Architecture and Ocean Engineering
  • Chemistry
  • Mechanical Engineering
  • Civil Engineering
  • Mathematics
  • Environmental Sciences
  • Cognitive, Neural, and Behavioral Sciences
  • Materials Science and Engineering
  • Computer and Computational Sciences and Computer Engineering

Benefits of being a recipient of the DoD SMART Scholarship

  • Recipients would receive total tuition fees.
  • Recipients would receive cash salaries of up to $25,000 – $38,000 annually.
  • Paid summer internships.
  • Book allowance.
  • Health insurance allowance.
  • Upon graduation, recipients of the DoD SMART Scholarships will be guaranteed a job at the Ministry of Defense. 

Documents required for the DoD SMART Scholarship

  • A secondary school certificate or the equivalent of 12 years of study. 
  • Baccalaureate transcripts are required for master’s degrees.
  • Student passport.
  • A concise curriculum vitae.
  • Statement of intent.
  • Research proposal (For master’s and Ph.D. students only). 
  • Two recommendation letters.

How to apply for the DoD SMART Fellowship 2023 

Interested applicants should apply for the DoD SMART Scholarships 2023 online on the official scholarship website.

When is the deadline to apply for the DoD SMART Scholarship

The DoD SMART Scholarship application portal opens on August 1, 2023, and registration ends on December 3, 2023, by 5:00 p.m.

The list of successful applicants will be announced in the spring of 2023. 

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) on DoD SMART Scholarship

How hard is it to get DoD Smart Scholarship?

At least a 3.0 on a scale of 4.0 and good standing at their school. Ask for funding for at least 1.5 years of school before you graduate (which starts at the program start date).

What is DoD Smart Scholarship?

DoD SMART Scholarship-for-Service Program

Does scholarship money go directly to you?

Private scholarships can be paid to your school or you personally by cheque or direct transfer into your bank account. To find out how to get your scholarship money, please ask.


The DoD SMART Scholarship is a combination of academics and workforce development programs and a great opportunity of getting employed after earning a degree.

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Hello, I am ST Admin! For five years, I began actively assisting students in Europe, the United States, and Canada in their pursuit of college advice and scholarship prospects. I am the Administrator of at present.

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