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Diversity

Marion B. Sewer Distinguished Scholarship for Undergraduates

Applications for 2025 will open in February.

The Marion B. Sewer Distinguished Scholarship for Undergraduates offers financial support to students who demonstrate an interest in the fields of biochemistry and molecular biology and enhance the diversity of science. Students whose social, educational or economic background adds to the diversity of the biomedical workforce or who show commitment to enhancing academic success of underrepresented students are eligible. It is expected that scholarship recipients remain engaged in ASBMB activities, even after the completion of the scholarship.

The scholarship provides $2,000 toward undergraduate tuition and related educational costs (e.g. room and board, books and supplies, etc.) for one academic year and can be applied to fall or spring tuition bills of the year following scholarship award notification. Up to ten scholarships will be awarded each academic year. Applications by individuals from underrepresented groups are encouraged, although all qualified applicants will be considered without regard to race, gender, ethnicity or national origin.

The Marion B. Sewer Distinguished Scholarship for Undergraduates is named in honor of Dr. Marion Sewer, professor of pharmacology at the University of California, San Diego, and former deputy chair of the ASBMB Minority Affairs Committee, now named the Maximizing Access Committee. Dr. Sewer was a role model for students at all stages and was deeply committed to service within the scientific community.

The Marion B. Sewer Scholarship is made possible by generous donations from:

Eligibility

Applicants for the Marion B. Sewer Distinguished Scholarship for Undergraduates must:

  • Be a U.S. citizen, U.S. national or permanent resident at the time of application. Students with DACA status also are eligible. Foreign nationals in the U.S. on a visa are not eligible.
  • Be enrolled or accepted for enrollment as a full-time student at an accredited two- or four-year institution located in the U.S. or U.S. territories. High school seniors are eligible to apply.
  • Be an ASBMB member at the time of application. Undergraduates and high school students can join the ASBMB directly. Undergraduates also have the option of joining an ASBMB Student Chapter at a participating institution.
  • Declare a Biochemistry and/or Molecular Biology major, or related discipline.
  • Have a minimum GPA of 3.0 on a 4.0 scale.

How to apply

The online application may be accessed on OpenWater. Application components include the following:

  • College major or intended major
  • Lists of leadership and extracurricular activities
  • Lists of honors and awards
  • Current GPA
  • Most recent unofficial academic transcript
  • Demographic information
  • Short statements:
    • Describe your research interests and/or career goals (250 words max)
    • Describe your commitment to enhance the diversity of science (250 words max)
    • Describe your financial need for the scholarship to help cover the costs of education (150 words max)

Examples of research interests and/or career goals

  • Interests in Biochemistry and Molecular Biology (BMB) research topics (e.g. cancer biology, genetics, neurobiology, etc.)
  • Career goals:
    • Attend graduate school, medical school and/or healthcare professional school
    • Become an academic professor
    • Entrepreneurship/Start-up
    • Other biomedical workforce-related career goals

Examples of commitment to enhance the diversity of science

The following are examples of ways a student could demonstrate their commitment to enhance diversity in science. There may be other ways a student could enhance diversity that are not listed here.

  • Diversity outreach and engagement activities
  • Engagement with marginalized or underserved groups
  • Research interest in diversity-related topics
  • Inclusive leadership roles
  • Advocacy and awareness campaigns at your institution or in your community

Examples of financial need for the scholarship

  • Low family income
  • Unforeseen financial hardships
  • Sibling or family educational expenses
  • High education costs
  • Independent student status (minimal or no family support)
Marion B. Sewer

Marion B. Sewer

Learn about past recipients

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Magazine

Meet the 2023 Sewer scholarship winners

This award supports 10 undergraduates who demonstrate an interest in the fields of biochemistry and molecular biology and who enhance the diversity of science.

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Magazine

2022 Sewer scholarship winners announced

The $2,000 award goes to undergraduates who demonstrate an interest in the fields of biochemistry and molecular biology and enhance the diversity of science.

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Magazine

Ten Sewer scholarships announced

The ASBMB diversity award for undergraduates has doubled its reach this year.

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Magazine

Sewer scholarship program funding doubled

Meet the 2020 recipients of the ASBMB’s Marion B. Sewer Distinguished Scholarship for Undergraduates.

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Magazine

Early support goes a long way

Austin Maduka, a recipient of the ASBMB's Marion B. Sewer Distinguished Scholarship for Undergraduates, writes about why he engages in education and outreach activities..

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Magazine

Honoring undergrads who promote diversity

Meet the 2019 recipients of the Marion B. Sewer Scholarship, which is open to all American Society for Biochemistry and Molecular Biology undergraduate members. This year’s deadline is June 1.