Become a STEM professional

The Loras College DuSTEM Scholars Program provides both financial and academic support for students wanting to pursue an undergraduate degree in science, technology, engineering or math (STEM) disciplines.

Market demand for individuals educated in a STEM field continues to be on the rise. Data from the U.S. Commerce department reported that employment in STEM occupations over the last decades (2007-2017) grew by 24.4% (versus 4%) and STEM occupations are projected to continue to outpace growth in other occupations by 2.5% between 2014 and 2024. According to a recent Pew Research Center analysis of U.S. Census Bureau Data, STEM training in college is associated with higher earnings, whether graduates work in a STEM occupation or not.

DuSTEM Scholars will join a learning community that supports their transition from high school to college and from college to career. Throughout the Loras DuSTEM scholars program, our goal is to leverage resources to mentor participants into successful professionals.

Loras DuStem Experienment
Loras DuStem Robotics Project
Loras College DuStem Group Experiment
Loras College Science Experiment
Program Benefits:

Students selected to participate in the DuSTEM Scholars Program will receive the following:

  • An annual, renewable scholarship up to $1,500 based on financial need.
  • Access to free tutors in STEM courses if desired.
  • Required participation in a Dubuque-based community project that utilizes students’ developing STEM skills.

Additionally, DuSTEM Scholars will join the larger Loras STEM community.  All STEM majors:

  • Work with an academic advisor in their discipline; pre-health science students also work with the Health Science Advisor.
  • Have access to Supplemental Instruction for most introductory courses.
  • Work with upper-class mentors.
  • Explore research on an in-depth STEM topic through an immersive three-week January term course.
  • Can attend presentations from STEM experts on campus and tour off-campus facilities related to STEM professions.
  • Have abundant opportunities for community engagement, internships and research projects.
  • Apply their coursework in capstone or individual research projects.
  • Have access to career preparation through mock interviews, career fairs and alumni networking.
Students Eligible to Apply for the Program:
  • Demonstrate financial need. Need is determined by the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). FAFSA forms are available from fafsa.gov on October 1 (Use Loras code: 001873).
  • Cumulative high school GPA of 3.0 or higher (on a 4.0 scale)
  • Successful completion of college prep math courses
  • Must be enrolled as a full-time student intending to declare a major in an eligible STEM field.

Majors eligible for the DuSTEM Program include:





Computer Science


Biological Research

Data Science


Application Process
  • Students admitted to the college may apply for this program scholarship. The scholarship application can be found on the Student Status page.
  • Students must complete the FAFSA and have the results sent to Loras College (Code 001873).
  • Priority deadline for applications is January 1. Please check with your admission representative for further details.
    The application includes:

    • Essay: Within the scholarship application, students will be prompted to upload an essay of roughly 500 words that describes your interest in pursuing a career in a STEM field. Suggested topics to address, include: a) The field you would like to study; b) Why you are interested in pursuing a STEM career; c) Any obstacles you have encountered while preparing for a career in STEM; d) Any projects or experiments that you have contributed to that have contributed to your interest in pursuing a STEM discipline (e.g. class assignments, research experience, club activities, et al.); and e) Any specific challenge or problem that you have identified and hope to solve by studying a STEM discipline.
    • References: Within the scholarship application, students will be prompted for contact information of two references that can speak to your skills or potential in a STEM discipline (at least one should come from a high school teacher).
  • Students that advance to the finalist stage will be invited to be interviewed (in person or via technology).
  • Students must complete the DuSTEM application and all supporting materials by January 1.

DuSTEM Scholars are Required to:

  • Remain enrolled at Loras College full time.
  • Be enrolled in and successfully complete at least one course each semester that contributes to the major requirements of an eligible STEM major. Students must make satisfactory progress toward completion of a STEM degree.
  • Participate in annual surveys/interviews required for program evaluation.
  • Agree to update Loras College on employment and contact information for at least six years after completion of the program.