Northrop Grumman: Grants for STEM Education


OVERVIEW: Northrop Grumman and its namesake foundation support STEM education initiatives that increase opportunity and diversity in the science, technology, and engineering fields. The foundation makes direct grants to national-level organizations and offers matching funds for employee giving. Funding mostly supports competitions, camps, and professional development opportunities for K-12 education, but it also supports higher education scholarships and national diversity organizations.

IP TAKE: This funder prioritizes efforts to increase diversity in the STEM professions and seeks to partner with organizations whose goal is to increase STEM opportunities for women, African Americans, Hispanics, and other underrepresented groups.

PROFILE: Northrop Grumman is a leading aerospace and defense technology firm. The company produced the B-2 bomber and many of the unmanned drone aircraft used in U.S. military operations. It is also a pioneer in advanced radar systems and cyber security. The foundation prioritizes “providing unique education experiences” in STEM for teachers and students alike. To that end, it “supports diverse and sustainable national-level programs that enhance the education experience for students and provide teachers with the training and tools they need to be successful in the classroom.” The foundation gives almost entirely to STEM education in K-12 and higher education through a Matching Gifts For Education program in which Northop Gumman matches employees’ contributions to qualified educational institutions dollar-for-dollar and via direct grants that fund “national-level STEM programming.”

The Matching Gifts For Education program matches “verified” employee donations to qualified institutions dollar-for-dollar, from $50 to $2,500. Primary, secondary, and non-profit postsecondary and vocational schools are all eligible, but there is an extensive list of programs the foundation will not support, so grantseekers should check eligibility.

Northrop Grumman’s K-12 grants fund competitions, fairs, camps, and other sorts of getaways for students and teachers. One standout program involves the foundation’s effort to get young people working in the field of cybersecurity. For example, it is a major supporter of CyberPatriot, which hosts an international competition for high school students to inspire the next generation of patriotic programmers, a number of educational “Cybercamps,” and an elementary school initiative designed to introduce students to STEM and educate them about online safety issues. Northrop Grumman has hired a number of former CyberPatriot participants.

Though it is less of a priority, the foundation also supports higher education STEM by giving to scholarship funds, diversity programs, organizations serving current and former members of the military, career pipeline programs, and cybersecurity programs. Past beneficiary organizations include academic or professional diversity organizations, scholarship funds, and a variety of programs at universities, colleges, and community colleges. Past initiatives include undergraduate mentorships, efforts to attract more women and underrepresented minorities into the field, an honors undergraduate program, and an initiative to get more two-year college STEM grads to pursue a four-year and graduate-level education.

While not under the umbrella of the foundation, Northrop Grumman’s Aid to Higher Education program provides funding from the corporation to support initiatives that “promote the advancement of science, technology, engineering and math at targeted colleges and universities.” This initiative does not accept unsolicited proposals; grantseekers must first request a meeting by sending “a brief summary of both your organization and the project that would be supported.” Apply online here.

The Northrop Grumman Corporation also directly supports the areas of "education, services for veterans and the military, health and human services, as well as the environment." Application deadlines and additional information are listed here. The foundation also supports a number of associations and programs (some of them STEM-related) for military service members and veterans in higher education.