SHRM Foundation Certification Scholarships
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SHRM Foundation Certification Scholarships

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The SHRM Foundation will award  more than 200 scholarships in 2017  to assist  HR professionals in obtaining their SHRM certification. SHRM members may apply for this $750 award to support their pursuit of professional SHRM-CP or SHRM-SCP certification.  Learn more about SHRM Certification.

Please note new application deadlines for 2017: April 10, 2017 (awarded in June) and October 10, 2017 (awarded in December)

Applicants may be selected to receive one of the following named awards:

Funds may be used for any combination of test preparation-such as SHRM Certification Preparation tools and/or exam fees. Scholarship recipients will be required to provide documentation of their certification expenses before receiving their award check. In addition, SHRM chapters and state councils may apply for an award to support their SHRM certification preparation programs. Each scholarship is a one-time award; however previous applicants and past scholarship recipients are eligible to re-apply. Certification scholarships are awarded twice annually.

Who is Eligible

To be considered for this scholarship:


  • You must have a current SHRM membership to apply for an award and the membership must be active throughout the year in which you receive the award. SHRM student members are not eligible for this program. (View scholarships for SHRM student members.)
  • You must be preparing to sit for the SHRM-CP or SHRM-SCP certification exam. Members who have already taken a SHRM certification exam in the 2016 calendar year are also eligible to apply.
  • Employees or board members of SHRM or the SHRM Foundation or other SHRM affiliate (not including chapters), and members of their immediate family are not eligible to apply for SHRM Foundation grants, awards or scholarships.

Chapters/State Councils

  • You must be applying on behalf of a SHRM chapter or state council in good standing. A SHRM member with a valid ID should complete the online application form.
  • Your chapter/state must be conducting or planning to conduct a SHRM certification preparation program or some other type of broad effort to promote professional SHRM certification.
  • Foundation scholarship funds may not be used to directly fund a state or chapter scholarship program.

How to Apply

To apply for this scholarship, just complete and submit the online application using the link at the end of this section.

The application includes contact information and a series of short answer questions about your volunteer experience and your career aspirations. You will also be asked to upload a current resume that includes your SHRM/SHRM Foundation volunteer experience, and one letter of reference. Reference letters should be addressed to the “SHRM Foundation Scholarship Review Committee” and should provide insight into your character, career and volunteer accomplishments, work ethic, values and need for the scholarship.

Chapter/State Council Applicants
The application will ask you to provide contact information, and then describe the certification program for which you are seeking funding, current results for established programs, or anticipated results for new programs, the program budget and funding, as well as any awards and honors received by the chapter or state council.

Selection Criteria

Scholarship recipients will be selected on the strength of their work experience and their commitment to a career in human resources. Scholarship applications are reviewed and scored by groups of SHRM volunteers based on the following criteria. All decisions are final.

  • 40% Work experience/progression (HR involvement & future career plans)
  • 40% Volunteer activity (SHRM experience preferred, but not required)
  • 20% Financial need

Chapters/State Councils

  • 50% Plan for use of funds: program depth, reach and impact.
  • 30% Financial need.
  • 20% Matching funds available.

Volunteer judging committees are formed in each of the five SHRM domestic regions to review the scholarship applications. Scholarships will be distributed among all five regions so applicants are competing only with other applicants in their own region.

Applicants selected for an award will be required to provide a Social Security number or tax ID as well as a copy of their test registration, receipt for Learning System purchase and/or registration for a SHRM certification preparation seminar prior to receiving their award funds.


Apply May 2-July 15, 2016................Notified of results by October 7, 2016
Apply February 1-April 10, 2017...........Notified of results by June 5, 2017
Apply August 1-October 10, 2017.......Notified of results by December 4, 2017

Apply for a Certification Scholarship


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