The GRIT Grant is designed to help students who have overcome (and may still face) greater obstacles in persisting to degree than some of their peers. The GRIT Grant is intended to help students close to graduation stay on track and on time as the progress toward degree.  Demonstrated ability to overcome adversity, financial need and proximity to graduation are all considered in the Grit Grant awarding process. 

The GRIT Grant is made available by a generous Montana State University alumna who is committed to assisting those who persist in the face of adversity. 

Mary Ann Pearce is a native of Butte Montana, Pearce graduated from MSU in 1976 with a degree in Chemical Engineering.   As a student, she chartered the MSU Chapter of the Society of Women Engineers and continued to champion for women in engineering throughout her career at Conoco Phillips.  She retired from Conoco Phillips in 2010, where she served as the Lower 48 Exploration and Production Commercial Activities Manager.  She is married to David Gray (retired high school chemistry teacher), and they live in Houston.

Pearce was a founding member of the Houston Alumni Chapter and is currently serving as Vice Chair on the Board of Governors for the MSU Alumni Foundation. 

Nomination Criteria:
  • Undergraduate student in their junior/senior year (approximately 45 or less credit hours to degree completion);
  • Graduate student;
  • Preference for a Montana resident; and/or
  • Preference for demonstrated financial need.

The nomination period is each fall semester. The link for the nomination form will be made available here and by email once the process is opened for the year.

Nomination Form