P.E.O. Program for Continuing Education (PCE)

The Program for Continuing Education was established in 1973 to provide need-based grants to women in the U.S. or Canada whose education has been interrupted and who find it necessary to return to school to support themselves and/or their families.


  • The P.E.O. Program for Continuing Education (PCE) is intended to provide one-time need-based grants to women who are citizens or legal permanent residents of the United States or Canada for use in completing a degree or certification necessary for improving or gaining skills leading to employment.
  • The maximum grant is $3,000.
  • Lesser amounts may be awarded based on funds available in the current year’s grant budget and applicants’ individual needs.
  • Grants will not be awarded for prerequisite courses or to those needing or choosing immediate continuation of their education beyond the current program for which the grant is requested.
  • A PCE grant is not to be used for living expenses or to repay educational loans or personal debt.

A PCE grant is a grant-in-aid for education-related expenses such as:

  • tuition
  • books, supplies
  • testing and graduation fees
  • transportation (only for an estimated cost of gas, parking, and local bus fare, not for auto loan payments or maintenance)
  • childcare (only while in class or studying)
  • uniforms required by the educational program
  • Equipment/tools necessary for the course of study

Grants may be awarded for academic or technical courses including online programs offered by educational institutions in the United States or Canada.
Information for Women Interested in PCE Grant Consideration
Membership in P.E.O. is not a requirement for grant award consideration. However, access to the online application is given only after the members of a P.E.O. chapter have voted to sponsor a candidate. In order to protect the privacy of its members, membership lists, including contact information, are never provided to non P.E.O.s.

If you are interested in being considered for chapter sponsorship, you should:

  • Carefully read through the Eligibility criteria, and all other information provided on this site.
  • Complete and submit the Information Form for a Potential PCE Candidate Seeking Chapter Sponsorship
  • Please do not use the “Request More Information” link on this website to request status updates. If a P.E.O. member has not initiated contact within four weeks, it is unlikely a sponsoring chapter has been located.

A woman is eligible for recommendation by a local chapter if she:

  • Is a citizen or legal permanent resident of the U.S. or Canada
  • Is enrolled in a certification or degree program from an accredited institution; has not already earned a master’s degree or above
  • Is living and studying in the U.S. or Canada for the entire course of study
  • Has had at least 24 consecutive months as a non-student sometime in her adult life
  • Is within 18 consecutive months of completing her educational program
  • Is enrolled in an education program that, at the conclusion, will lead to employment or job advancement

A woman is not eligible for grant consideration if she:

  • Is requesting the grant for use in prerequisite courses needed to secure admission into another program of study
  • is choosing immediate continuation of her education beyond the current program for which the grant is requested
  • Has already earned a master’s degree or above
  • PCE Policies (PDF – updated 1/22)
  • Online Information Form – Potential PCE Candidate Seeking Chapter Sponsorship

Chapter Recommendation
When a chapter identifies a prospective applicant, the chapter’s PCE chair will arrange an interview to assess eligibility. If the chapter votes to recommend and sponsor the applicant, the chair oversees the online application process which starts with the Chapter Recommendation Form. The CRF is posted on the PCE page of the member-only portion of the P.E.O. International website.

After the CRF has been reviewed by the project supervisor, the applicant will be emailed instructions for setting up her online account along with a deadline for completion of her portion of the application. The PCE Application and Income and Expense Statement must be submitted online no later than 30 calendar days after the applicant has this email. The chapter contact will also be advised of the deadline.

A chapter recommendation must be submitted no less than eight weeks prior to the start date of the term for which the grant is requested; however, it cannot be accepted more than 14 weeks in advance of that date.

When a grant is awarded, payment will be made by direct deposit into the recipient’s bank account, using the information provided during the application process. For those recipients without access to a bank account and those in Canada, a check, in the recipient’s name, is mailed to the local chapter’s PCE contact.

Endowed and Named Scholars
An endowed PCE Fund may be established in honor or memory of an individual or chapter. The funds are held in the P.E.O. Foundation.

A one-time gift of USD $3,000 may be designated as a Named Grant in honor or memory of an individual or chapter.

External Scholarships