First-Generation Scholarship

7316745590_531786e0e8_k (1)
The First-Generation Scholarship is a monetary award for first-generation students who secure unpaid summer internships.

This scholarship supports first-generation students looking to gain experience to complement their academic coursework. Students will be selected through an application and interview process. All internships must be a minimum of six weeks during the summer. An award of $2,000 will be given to selected students.

Student Testimonials

Working as a research intern this past summer provided me with an opportunity to see how healthcare and digital media can intersect with one another, despite seeming like distinct disciplines. Healthcare is a complex field that involves so much more than the typical biology and chemistry classes associated with it. It requires an understanding of people themselves, and the various external political, economic, and sociocultural factors that shape how they live. The experience of this internship has been extremely meaningful to me and I hope to publish a paper summarizing our findings, which will be a significant personal accomplishment for me.

-Jonathan; Biological Sciences, Class of 2021

I made invaluable connections and learned the ins and outs of the brokering business. I was able to attain tangible knowledge about a field that I only knew about theoretically. This scholarship allowed me to continue to take advantage of all that USC has to offer. I believe experiences are invaluable; I often prioritize an opportunity that may lead to eventual career growth and success as opposed to temporary monetary gain. In choosing to take an unpaid internship this summer, I have made unique connections and have learned more than I could have ever asked for. That being said, money still has to be taken into consideration; this scholarship has allowed me to provide for myself during the past couple months despite having an unpaid internship this summer.

-Natasha; Major: Business Administration; Class of 2021


In collaboration with our First-Generation Mentor Program and campus partners, we are excited to offer this scholarship to first-generation students who secure unpaid summer internships. This initiative supports students looking to gain hands-on experience. Students will “test drive” a career field and enhance their professionalism through a career-oriented internship opportunity.


  • Currently enrolled first-generation college student in an undergraduate degree program at USC with a minimum 2.8 GPA
  • Former first-generation scholarship recipients are not eligible
  • Graduation date between December 2020 – May 2023
  • Secure an unpaid internship by 12:00 pm PST on Friday, April 17, 2020 (can include fee-based virtual internships)
  • Must have written proof of internship, including intern supervisor name/contact information
  • Must work at least six weeks at an organization, in any field or industry

Application Process

All application materials must be received by 12:00 pm PST on April 17, 2020.

Candidates will be notified via email by April 21, 2020 if they are selected for an interview with the USC First-Generation Scholarship Selection Committee.

Please complete a two-step application process:

  1. Complete an Online Application
  2. Submit Supplemental Documents within connectSC, Job ID#192792
    • Current Resume
    • STARS Report (Available on OASIS)
    • Personal Essay: a one-page, single spaced (one-inch margins) narrative explaining your current academic program, why you are interested in the USC First-Generation Scholarship, and how you think this internship experience will enhance your undergraduate experience and have an impact on your future. Essay must be typed in no smaller than 10-point font.
    • Copy of your internship job description from your organization or supervisor

Selection Process

Students will be selected based on their application and interview. Students are expected to demonstrate strong written and verbal communication skills.


Call us at (213) 740-9105 or email if you need assistance finding an internship.

Back to top