Commerce RI accepting applications for third round of Wavemaker Fellowship program

Applications are now open for the third round of the Wavemaker Fellowship Program, which provide college graduates with refundable tax credit up to $6,000. / COURTESY RHODE ISLAND COMMERCE CORPORATION

PROVIDENCE – The state’s Wavemaker Fellowship program that provides recent graduates working in science, technology, engineering and mathematics fields with student loan reimbursement is now accepting applications for the program’s third round, the R.I. Commerce Corp. announced Wednesday.

The fellowship awards STEM and design graduates who are working in Rhode Island with a refundable tax credit worth up to $6,000 per year for up to four years. The maximum annual credit awarded is $6,000 for graduate degree holders, $4,000 for bachelor’s degree holders and $1,000 for associated degree holders.

This year, the program is allowing graduating seniors who have a pending job offer to apply to the program.

“A thriving STEM workforce is vital to continuing Rhode Island’s economic comeback,” Gov. Gina M. Raimondo said in a statement. “We are taking important steps to keep talented people here and attract others to start their careers in Rhode Island.”

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During the second round of the Wavemaker Fellowship, 224 fellows were chosen out of 325 applicants.

Applicants are evaluated on a variety of criteria, but Commerce RI strongly weighs a pursuit of a career in what it determines as key advanced industries as well as the program’s impact on the applicants’ decision to stay and work in Rhode Island.

Fellows must have incurred student loan debt during the completion of their graduate, bachelor’s or associate’s degree. Fields covered by the program include life, natural or environmental sciences; computer, information or software technology; advanced mathematics or finance’ engineering; industrial design; or medical and medical device technology.

Commerce RI is accepting applications for the current round of the Wavemaker program through June 15.

More information on the program can be found at

Lauren Aratani is a PBN contributing writer.

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