Yiannis Mourtos Memorial Scholarship

This is a need-based but also competitive scholarship (please see application process below), created to honor the memory of Yiannis Mourtos, father of Dr. Nikos J. Mourtos. Its purpose is to provide financial help to deserving, SJSU aerospace engineering juniors, so they can focus on what they do best: study airplanes, spacecraft, and rockets.

A few words about Yiannis Mourtos

Yiannis came from a poor farming family in the town of Amalias, in Greece. His father Nikolas was a Greek Orthodox priest. His mother Nikolitsa took care of their eight children (only five of which survived the harsh years of the German occupation) while working also in the farm. Destroyed from years of foreign occupation and the civil war that followed, the countryside did not have much to offer, so Yiannis moved to Athens to seek a university degree. To support himself as a student, he served as a police officer in the city center throughout his studies. He earned his degree in economics from the Athens University of Economics and Business and went to work for the Greek IRS.  

One of the perks of being a police officer at the time was free entry to the Greek National Opera. Yiannis took full advantage of this and never missed an opera playing in Athens. He became enamored with Giuseppe Verdi whose operas portray human desires and passions, while integrating some of the most majestic music ever composed. 


  • Minimum GPA = 2.5
  • C or better in AE112, AE138, AE160
  • Established financial need

How to Apply

Submit an essay (min 750 - max 1,000 words) elaborating on any connection you can think off between art and aerospace engineering and how the former can help put the latter in the service of humankind. In your writing think outside the box and be as creative as you can. 

Submit via email to: nikos.mourtos@sjsu.edu

Deadline: Ongoing - One $5K scholarship awarded per year