Maintenance window scheduled to begin at February 14th 2200 est. until 0400 est. February 15th


Forgot Password?

    Defense Visual Information Distribution Service Logo

    FY2024 SMART Creative Research & Engineering Advancing Technical Equity in STEM (CREATES) Grant Program Awardees



    Courtesy Story

    SMART Scholarship Program

    The Department of Defense (DoD) Science, Mathematics, and Research for Transformation (SMART) Program recently established a new, competitive grant, SMART Creative Research & Engineering Advancing Technical Equity in STEM (CREATES) Grant for Fiscal Year (FY) 2024. This is a funding opportunity that aims to recruit, train, and cultivate a DoD civilian science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) workforce, fueled by SMART scholars, with the skills, abilities, and diversity needed to solve national security challenges in a complex global environment. The grant expands and enhances connections and opportunities between the SMART Program, SMART scholars and their DoD sponsoring facilities, and students and faculty at Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCU), Minority Institutions (MI), Minority Serving Institutions (MSI), Tribal Colleges and Universities (TCU), and Women’s Colleges (WC).

    The SMART Program is pleased to announce five new grants totaling $483,000 of funding. The SMART CREATES Grant is awarded to SMART scholars and their mentors at a participating DoD sponsoring facility. Awardees must be completing (or have previously completed) their SMART-sponsored DoD civilian service commitment. CREATES Grants are valued up to $125,000 per year for a maximum of two years.

    As the largest federal employer of scientists and engineers, the DoD is committed to developing diverse STEM talent to meet the Department’s workforce needs. This is necessary to drive technological innovation, maintain the United States’ competitive advantage, and ensure the Nation is prepared to lead in emerging technology areas. To do this, the 2022 National Defense Strategy (NDS) and the 2023 National Defense Science and Technology Strategy set the foundation to attract and build a strong, talented future technical workforce that works on cutting-edge research across DoD’s critical technology areas in DoD laboratories, centers, and installations. As the DoD’s largest workforce development program, the SMART Scholarship Program is well-positioned to implement the NDS direction to, “broaden our recruitment pool to reflect all of the United States, including traditionally marginalized communities and promoting a diversity of background and experience to drive innovative solutions across the enterprise.”

    The SMART CREATES Grant Program achieves this vision through a multi-faceted approach. The CREATES Collaboration Grant fosters partnerships between SMART scholars and HBCU, MI, MSI, TCU, and WC through collaboration on DoD-relevant technical projects. Additionally, the CREATES Pipeline Grant supports DoD facilities sponsoring and employing SMART scholars to build meaningful partnerships with HBCU, MI, MSI, TCU, and WC, to enhance SMART’s recruiting efforts in concert with the DoD facilities on efforts to retain a diverse and technically competent workforce.

    “The CREATES Grant is a critical part of the SMART Program’s continuing efforts to transform the DoD’s technical civilian workforce and ensure equitable access to STEM careers in the DoD,” stated Dr. Coit Hendley, SMART Deputy Program Manager.

    A highly competitive scholarship-for-service program, SMART is one of the largest science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM)-focused education and workforce initiatives under DoD STEM, the Department’s comprehensive K–20 STEM education and talent development effort. SMART is empowered to make full-tuition awards during any phase of a scholar’s education at a regionally accredited U.S. college or university. The program sponsors bachelor’s, master’s, and doctoral studies in 24 academic disciplines critical to national security and DoD’s scientific and technological future. Upon graduation, students move directly into federal government employment at DoD laboratories. Awards can be made during any phase of a scholar’s education and vary in length from a minimum of one year to a maximum of five years. The service commitment is one year of DoD employment for each academic year of SMART funding. Since its inception in 2006, the program has awarded over 4,700 scholarships.

    To learn more about the SMART Scholarship-for-Service Program and the participating DoD sponsoring facilities, visit Information on the SMART Scholar SEED Grant Program can be found

    Interested in becoming a SMART scholar? The application period for the 2024 SMART scholar
    cohort began August 1, 2023, and ends December 1, 2023. More information can be found on the
    SMART website.

    The FY24 SMART CREATES Grant awardees are:

    Army White Sands Test Center, White Sands Missile Range, NM
    -- Demetrius Hernandez*
    Air Force Research Lab - Space Vehicles Directorate, Kirtland Air Force Base, NM
    -- Sherry Neher*

    Naval Information Warfare Center Atlantic, North Charleston, SC
    -- Derek Jennings
    -- Josette Francis
    -- Johnathan Rann*
    -- Luke Overbey
    -- Shawn Frazier
    Naval Air Weapons Station China Lake, Ridgecrest, CA
    -- Christopher Simpson*
    -- Catherine Kreidt
    -- Michael Delaney
    -- Eric Sandall*
    Air Force Research Laboratory, Wright-Patterson Air Force Base, OH
    -- Marcus Smith*
    -- Nathaniel Bridges

    *denotes SMART scholar

    2022 National Defense Strategy (

    2023 National Defense Science and Technology Strategy (


    Date Taken: 09.07.2023
    Date Posted: 09.07.2023 11:36
    Story ID: 452900

    Web Views: 501
    Downloads: 0