Decal for STEM CONNECT with UNL, SCC and WNCC


NSF logo

Our mission

The STEM Career Opportunities in Nebraska: Networks, Experiential-learning, and Computational Thinking (STEM CONNECT) is an NSF-funded S-STEM (Scholarships in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics) scholarship program forming a partnership among the University of Nebraska-Lincoln (UNL), Southeast Community College (SCC), and Western Nebraska Community College (WNCC).

Launched in Fall 2019, STEM CONNECT awards scholarships to and provides curricular and co-curricular support to academically talented, low-income students with interest in careers that require strong skills in mathematics or computer science. A major goal of the program is to promote diversity within STEM disciplines.

Student solves puzzle at Math Day

Current Scholars

The STEM CONNECT Community has 67 Scholars: 44 from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln, 16 from Southeast Community College, and seven from Western Nebraska Community College. Of the 44 Scholars at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln, eight transferred from the SCC STEM CONNECT program, and two transferred from the WNCC program.

Since the start of the program in Fall 2019, graduates from our community college STEM CONNECT programs have gone on to, among other things, procure jobs in IT and nuclear energy. Learn more

Follow us on social media @UNLMathematics and use #STEMCONNECT.

Abby Seibel

I was always a straight-A student, so I was really terrified of failing. The first time I started coding and it wouldn't work, I’d think, ‘Oh no, I failed. But now, I think, ‘Oh no, that's just how it is.’ I really want to inspire people not to be afraid of failing in computer science because that's a big part of it.

Read more about the Spring 2020 STEM CONNECT Scholars

How to Apply to SCC or WNCC

The application process for a STEM CONNECT scholarship depends on your current educational status and your higher education plans.

Southeast Community College (SCC) and Western Nebraska Community College (WNCC) are welcoming STEM CONNECT applications for Fall 2022 beginning February 2, 2022. Applications will be reviewed on a rolling basis starting April 1, 2022, and continuing until the start of the Fall 2022 semester.

To apply for Fall 2022, go to our application form. Before applying please also review our eligibility requirements in the “What you need to know” section.

If you are unsure as to whether you are eligible for our scholarship program, please email us to describe your circumstances at

Benefits of the STEM CONNECT program

  • Community. STEM CONNECT Scholars will be part of a community of Scholars who share an interest in learning mathematics and computer science.
  • Mentoring. Scholars will be supported by a network of mentors, including a faculty mentor who meets regularly with mentees and participates in program activities and a staff adviser. Many STEM CONNECT Scholars also will have the opportunity to work as a Peer Mentor and thus mentor newer STEM CONNECT Scholars.
  • The STEM CONNECT Seminar. All STEM CONNECT Scholars participate in a non-credit course their first semester as a STEM CONNECT Scholar and bimonthly seminars in subsequent semesters. The seminar is designed to help students develop their leadership potential, gain valuable academic skills, become aware of available support services and resources on their campuses, build a common identity within the STEM CONNECT community, and learn about STEM career and education options.

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What you need to know

  • Financial need: STEM CONNECT Scholarships are need-based, with a maximum of $8,000/year. A student’s financial need is determined by U.S. Department of Education rules based on information provided with a Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) application.
  • Renewability:Scholarships are renewable subject to the program’s eligibility criteria through the Fall of 2024.
  • Citizenship: You must be a U.S. citizen, national (as defined in section 101(a) of the Immigration and Nationality Act), alien admitted as refugees under section 207 of the Immigration and Nationality Act, or alien lawfully admitted to the United States for permanent residence. Please note that Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) individuals are ineligible for support from this solicitation unless they meet the requirements listed in the first sentence of this bullet
  • Undergraduate status: You must have begun college as a first-year student between Fall 2021 and Fall 2022 OR have no more than 30 credits applicable to a STEM major.


  • You must enroll in the Academic Transfer program intending to pursue a STEM focused academic program with the goal of transferring to a four-year college to complete their studies, OR
  • Be pursuing a two-year degree that will lead to opportunities for employment as a member of the skilled technical workforce, AND agree to take mathematics or computer science courses that will strengthen your preparation for a career in a STEM field. Note: SCC students interested in Health (e.g., nursing, medicine) are not eligible.
  • See our Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) for additional eligibility information.

Contact us with any questions at

Geigh Zollicoffer

The problems got more complex as time went on, and I decided to become a math major because I noticed a lot of the computer science problems could be solved using mathematical equivalencies. [My advice is to] start learning on your own time, and don’t just settle for the knowledge you learned in class.