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Congressman Yarmuth, Bellarmine President McGowan Announce New Federal Scholarship Funds

LOUISVILLE – Today, Congressman John Yarmuth (KY-3) joined Bellarmine University President Dr. Joseph J. McGowan at a news conference to announce $600,000 in new federal funding for scholarships that promote studies in chemistry, physics, technology, engineering, and mathematics.

The federal funds will allow the university to award 20 scholarships to students every year for the next four years. The level of scholarship will be determined based on a student’s financial need.

“Strategic investments in education are critical to our economic future,” Congressman Yarmuth said. “I’m proud to support new scholarships at Bellarmine that will not only help prepare our local students for careers of the future, but will also create opportunities for them to lead the next generation of innovation and scientific breakthrough.”

The primary goal of the federal funding is to increase the number of Bellarmine students majoring in chemistry, physics, technology, engineering, and mathematics – particularly students from underrepresented groups, such as women and minorities. This fall, Bellarmine enrolled 120 students majoring in those disciplines, which are part of the broader liberal arts curriculum the university offers.

“This grant allows some of the area’s brightest young minds in chemistry, physics, math, and technology to study those subjects as part of a well-rounded liberal arts education at Bellarmine, and to find jobs in the community after they graduate,” McGowan said. “We’re grateful to the National Science Foundation for approving this grant, and I’m very appreciative of Congressman Yarmuth’s ongoing work to ensure the federal government continues to invest in higher education.”

The total cost of the program is $2 million over five years, with the university providing the remaining matching funds. Federal funds are provided through the National Science Foundation, which is the primary federal investor in research and education dedicated to science and engineering.

The funding supports programs designed to ensure student success, including faculty mentoring, peer tutoring, career counseling, and other opportunities. Students who receive scholarships must maintain a minimum grade-point average and meet other academic requirements.

The program also supports building a stronger local workforce for the future, and students will have opportunities to collaborate with Louisville-based businesses during their time at the university.

“This NSF grant will have a considerable impact on our physics department and help us attract highly qualified students from Louisville and throughout the region,” said Dr. Akhtar Mahmood, associate professor of physics at Bellarmine and the grant’s primary author. “The scholarship recipients will all reside together on campus in a new living and learning community. We are developing a program for these scholars that offers significant academic support and opportunities to network with local employers and professionals in their field of study.”