OAR Scholarship Program

The Organization for Autism Research’s scholarship program awards $3,000 scholarships to students across the autism spectrum. We are pleased to invite applications from persons with an autism diagnosis (DSM-IV or later criteria) pursuing full-time, post-secondary, education in any of the following: four-year undergraduate college or university, two-year undergraduate college, trade school, technical school, vocational school, or cooperative life skills program.

Since 2007, the OAR Scholarship Program has awarded a total of $1,552,500 to 503 highly deserving autistic students.

Annual Amount


Open To

Students diagnosed with autism pursuing a full-time, post-secondary undergraduate education

Additional Selection Criteria

Any individual with an established autism diagnosis and who will be attending an accredited post-secondary institution of higher education in the United States for the Fall 2023 and Spring 2024 semesters is eligible to apply. However, students who have already received a bachelor’s degree are not eligible, and the scholarships do not support graduate or postgraduate studies.

Eligible individuals need to be accepted for enrollment or enrolled on a full-time basis (minimum 6 credits) or be working toward certification or accreditation in a particular field (e.g., studying to be a paralegal, chef, etc.). Past recipients of an OAR scholarship or immediate family members of any person serving on OAR’s Board of Directors or Scientific Council are not eligible to apply.

For the Synchrony Scholarship for Autistic Students of Color, only applicants from underrepresented racial/ethnic backgrounds are eligible to apply. This includes applicants who are Black/African American, Indigenous (Native American, Native Alaskan), Hispanic/Latino, Asian American/Pacific Islander, Middle Eastern/North African, or Multiracial.

Application Process

We exclusively use an online application system. 

Schwallie Family Scholarship: Supports students attending two- or four-year undergraduate colleges. Schwallie applicants typically pursue degrees at four-year colleges. Students attending two-year colleges with the intention of completing a four-year degree also typically apply to the Schwallie Scholarship. Click here to begin your Schwallie Family Scholarship application: https://researchautism.smapply.org/prog/schwallie_family_scholarship/

Lisa Higgins Hussman Scholarship: Supports students attending two-year undergraduate colleges, life skills or postsecondary programs, or vocational, technical, or trade schools. Hussman applicants typically make up the pool of talented students who face daily challenges related to autism and attend programs that assist in skill-building, job-readiness, and other transition-related skills. Click here to begin your Lisa Higgins Hussman Scholarship application:  https://researchautism.smapply.org/prog/hussman_scholarship/

Synchrony Scholarship for Autistic Students of Color: Supports students attending any type of undergraduate postsecondary education: two- or four-year colleges; life skills or postsecondary programs; or vocational, technical, or trade schools. Applicants must belong to an underrepresented racial/ethnic minority group. (Please note that autistic students of color are eligible to apply to any of the three programs for which they qualify, but they can only apply for one of them.) Click here to begin your Synchrony Scholarship application: https://researchautism.smapply.org/prog/synchrony_scholarship/

Please contact us at:  https://researchautism.org/contact-us/ if you have any questions about your eligibility for the different scholarships.


April 24, 2023


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