List of opportunities, grants, fellowship programs, contests and things like that for young ambitious people

When I was in middle school, I used to spend a lot of time on Quora, where I learned about grants, fellowships, science fairs, contests, summer programs, internships, and so many other interesting and exciting opportunities. I did go on to pursue some of them — I’ve applied for grants for my project (and received Emergent Ventures and Helium Grant!), attended MIT Launch summer program, and did two engineering internships.

I believe that opportunities like the ones I’ve mentioned below can be a fantastic way to meet other smart and ambitious people, find mentorship, get funding for projects, get new ideas, learn lots, and get recognition for your work!


  1. Pioneer grant
  2. Emergent Ventures
  3. Thiel Fellowship ($100k for 2 years)
  4. 1517fund grant
  5. Davidson Fellowship. Note: You need to be a US citizen or green card holder.
  6. Helium Grant ($1k)
  7. Cards against humanity STEM scholarship for a woman
  8. Cisco $300k Global Problem Solver Challenge
  9. 8VC Social Innovators Cup
  10. Palantir Women in Technology Scholarship
  11. Y Combinator startup incubator
  12. Einstein Fellowship

Science Fairs:

  1. Google Science Fair
  2. 3M Young Scientist Challenge
  3. Intel ISEF
  4. Young Scientist and Technology Exhibition
  5. EU Contest for Young Scientists


  1. Paradigm Challenge
  2. IOI, IMO, IPhO, IChO, IBO, and other International Science Olympiads
  3. Breakthrough Junior Challenge
  4. The Diamond Challenge
  5. Google Code-in
  6. CES Young Innovators to Watch
  7. World of 7 billion student video contest

Summer Programs:

  1. RSI
  2. Wolfram Summer School
  3. SPARC (summer program on applied rationality and cognition)
  4. LaunchX (I went there in 2017 summer!)
  5. CSNE Young Scholars Program in Neuroengineering (I’m applying for it in 2019!)
  6. YYGS
  7. Stanford Pre-Collegiate
  8. Harvard Summer School
  9. Center for Talented Youth
  10. Northwestern Center for Talent Development
  11. Google Summer of Code


  1. Hackathons! Online and in-person both. Find them on Devpost.
  2. NCWIT
  3. WWDC scholarship
  4. NVIDIA AI residency program
  5. The Recurse Center

Got any other ideas? Drop me a line at!

3 thoughts on “List of opportunities, grants, fellowship programs, contests and things like that for young ambitious people

  1. Great list! Of course, other companies in addition to NVIDIA, like Uber and Google, offer AI residencies/fellowships.


  2. Hi Harshita,
    I came across your blog yesterday. It is the best blog I have ever read. It helps a lot.

    I read about you. You are really an inspiration to me.

    I am 17. Currently in 12th.
    I have few startup ideas and I want to become an entrepreneur.
    So should I join engineering college or not? Is it necessary to join college? If not then How do I convince my parents?

    Looking forward to get your mentorship. 🙂

    – Abhishek


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