Whether you want to start your university or college journey, or further your studies beyond undergraduate level with a higher degree, an international scholarship program might be just the thing you need to make your dream of international education become a reality. An estimated $7.4 Billion is awarded in scholarship funds each year. That might seem like a lot, but less than 10% of scholars are lucky enough to benefit from a scholarship opportunity. It can therefore get quite competitive which is why this article will show you how to find international scholarships the right way.
A scholarship is a financial aid gift that is awarded to someone for them to cover some of the costs of their education at university. There is no need to pay back the money the scholarship providers pay you.
Thanks to technology and the wonders of the internet, it is now easier than ever to find scholarship programs to study abroad. There are a lot of scholarship opportunities available online that you can take advantage of. You could be searching scholarship sites today and by next month you could be on a flight to Sydney, Sao Paulo or San Francisco.
Of course, it’s not an easy process, you have to put in the work. But if done right, you should have a fair chance of getting a college scholarship to put towards your tuition fees and education expenses.
Planning is the key if you want to do anything right. This is also true if you want to go abroad and study. This is therefore the first step you should take on your scholarship search.
One thing you will notice immediately when you start your search for scholarships is that they each come with different conditions. While some are micro – scholarships of just a few hundred dollars, others will pay for a full semester abroad, or you may even find full ride scholarships that essentially cover all of your expenses. Some look at your academic achievements, while others require you to have something special besides your grades.
You should write a list of what you are looking for exactly. This is in terms of location or locations you’d like to study, majors or specific fields of study you are interested in, financial flexibility, culture diversity, and so on. This will make it easier for you to spot the most suitable offers, prioritize the most ideal options and allocate your time and efforts accordingly.
You’d be surprised how many people miss great opportunities due to being disorganized.
Few opportunities come to you without you chasing them down in life. If you want to find the right academic scholarship, you should be ready to dig. There are more than 25,000 universities in the world and around 1.7 Million private scholarships that are awarded each year. Your job is to find the right scholarships and the institutions they can get you into.
You can break this process into three sections; browser searching, social media searching, and direct inquiry. Google is very broad, so the best way to do your search is to start broad and narrow down to where what you’re looking for.
You can start with a simple “How to find international scholarships,” like you probably did to get to this article. Bookmark or save the offers that look interesting and actionable.
From here you want to start searching for opportunities that are related to your interests like:
You also have to save any interesting offers along with their requirements.
A detailed search is likely to give you the least options, but it will have the most relevant results. To get the best offers, you have to try thinking outside the box. For instance, Instead of just taking all results, use google and social media platform filters to refine your search. You can start by going to the scholarship search tool at internationalscholarships.com for a start. They have helped thousands of students around the world so far.
You can also take a shortcut by filtering your results. For instance, you can filter your results by date to find the most recent offers, considering that you will find the most recent scholarships for international students that haven’t yet been found by other applicants.
You can also get the answers you are looking for directly from the source. Through your research, you should be able to find a lot of contacts and connections. This allows you to directly call the institutions you find, contact the scholarship funders or education counselors, and build relationships with other people who managed to study abroad through scholarships.
After all this, along with asking and searching the right queries, you should have a clear picture of what’s available, what the requirements are, and how it aligns with what you want personally.
At this stage, you start writing your scholarship applications. This will probably take the most effort and time to do. This is where you’ll be writing, searching for documents, drafting and redrafting scholarship essays, and getting sleepless nights.
As mentioned above, there are different types of scholarships for international students. Knowing each type will increase your chances of writing an application that convinces whoever is reading it. It’s easy for the administrators to tell when an applicant has done their research and when they haven’t. So make sure you write a separate application that is specific to each program.
Here is a brief breakdown of the main types of scholarship available each year:
Based on your GPA (Grade Point Average) or other test scores such as the SAT, ACT or similar which you may have to take to qualify. The requirements will vary depending on the provider.
Based upon your chosen academic subject or sometimes a particular area of interest such as Arts or Drama
These are awarded to students in the most financial need of assistance.
You have to do your research on these as you can find grants and awards from institutions that are looking for someone like you already. Submit your applications in time and be sure to follow the application process to the letter. In-fact, just try to do everything way ahead of time so you don’t have to rush at the last minute.
My athletics teacher always said, “Even if you’re far ahead of the others, you’re not a winner before you cross the line.”
These days a lot of universities, colleges and sponsors like to see you or at least talk to you before they decide if you’re the right person and that you meet the eligibility requirements. Thousands of people might apply for the same funding as you, so award administrators are right to do their due diligence and make sure before a decision is made.
Sometimes they do background checks on social media. This means that you have to make sure all of your online profiles communicate the message in your application. You don’t have to start making big changes on your profile, but your application should not have information that can be easily contradicted.
Always be on the lookout for replies that come in. This will help you to respond quickly. The last thing you want is to lose your chance because you responded too late. As they say – the early bird catches the worm.
If you get an offer – congratulations! If you get more than one offer and have to decide between them you’ve done a fantastic job of all the steps above!
When choosing between options, you have to go back to the beginning and think about why you applied in the first place. Is there an offer that already aligns with what you were looking for?
For example, was there a specific international university you wanted to attend, or a particular experience you wanted to have? Maybe you had a specific goal or destination in mind.
You need to do your research here as well. Talk to admission counselors, ask questions of your peers, find related institutes, contact the embassy for the country you want to go to, and get a full picture of all your offers.
Once you have made a choice, don’t just ignore any other offers. Contact them to let them know that you are grateful and inform them that you have made other plans. After all, they were willing to help you.
The last piece of advice that I’ll give you is that going to a different environment and experiencing new things is amazing. Just make sure you don’t get too carried away and forget about your main priorities. Have a healthy balance between everything that you do.
With all this, I’m sure you now have a clear picture of how to find international scholarships.
All the best in your pursuit.
Yes, it can be stressful when you’re planning to study abroad. There are many perfectly understandable reasons to feel stressed or anxious. Tuition fees are high, you’ve got food costs, study materials, transportation, health insurance, and lots of other expenses.
Even the currency exchange rate can be a concern.
When you don’t have enough financial means you might consider taking out a student loan. Paying back the student loan can add another layer of stress. But still millions of students can be found at international colleges every year.
Students find ways to manage their financial situation and complete their education in international colleges.
Here are some budgeting tips for students who want to study abroad:
The tuition fees are probably the most expensive thing you will face when you plan to study abroad. The yearly cost can reach up to five figures and for some private colleges it can even reach up to six figures (USD). The Financial Aid Office or Admissions Office at your college of choice will have up to date information about their tuition fees.
But tuition is not the only cost to consider, living abroad involves other expenses like transportation, phone bills, health insurance, food expenses, holiday expenses, accommodation and more. When we talk about the cost of accommodation, most colleges provide (or at least offer) dorm rooms to their international students. But you can still choose to live off campus — alone or with a group of people. The rental cost for private accommodation will depend on the location you choose to live in.
It will be cheaper if you choose to live in a dorm. You can save money because you won’t have to pay for electricity, water, and internet bills as they will be included in the cost. You can also save money because you will be living on the college campus and therefore probably won’t have additional transportation costs.
Depending on your visa status you might be allowed to have a part-time job while studying. When allowed students can typically work for up to 20 hours a week during the semester and full-time during holidays and semester breaks. This could be a useful source of income to help you with your daily expenses.
Most international colleges have a dedicated advisory office for international students. They provide students the necessary advice so they can manage their experience — including their finances. They help students with budget plans, part-time job information, and other related information. It is a good idea to get their advice before making any decisions relating to your finances.
Although they might seem like a golden opportunity, remember that paying back your international student loans can cause stress and worry for some students. Getting an International student loan should usually be your last port of call for additional funds. We suggest you first look for financial aid and scholarships from schools and other sources. If you still find a financial gap after exhausting all the other sources, this is the time when international student loans come in handy.
If you focus on your education and keep an eye on your budget, you’ll be able to enjoy completing your education at an international college. Try to avoid unnecessary expenses and focus more on savings. Here are a few examples of how you can save money: Use a bicycle to avoid transportation costs, try to cook your food at home rather than eating in a restaurant, so you can avoid food costs. Most importantly take advice from school advisors, they can assist you with your budgeting.
At the same time, look for ways to make the most of your time as a foreign student, take part in activities and explore your home away from home while you can.
Millions of students around the world dream of studying in the US. There are a lot of famous universities and colleges to choose from. Improving their future prospects, getting a high quality higher education, and access to better opportunities are just some of the reasons why so many students want to study at a university in the US.
But to get the best quality product you usually have to pay a high price. US colleges are some of the most expensive colleges in the world, but still millions of international students apply every year.
So, how much does an international student pay to study in the US? The annual cost can reach up to five figures.
Most colleges don’t have a standardized government fee system. It mostly depends on the college and the course you choose.
There are multiple types of institutions available in the US such as community colleges, private colleges, and public colleges. Most international students study at public and private colleges rather than community colleges.
Private colleges are the costliest of them all. On average public colleges charge between $35,000 and $45,000 and private colleges charge from $50,000 to $75,000 per year.
Private universities charge more tuition fees as compared to public and community colleges.
Public colleges get their funding mostly from the state government and private colleges get their funding from private organizations and donations. Community colleges or two year colleges also usually get their funding from the government just like public colleges.
Subjects like the arts, education, and humanities tend to be less expensive than engineering, medical, dentistry, and other similar subjects.
Higher courses like masters are usually more expensive than undergraduate courses. The college tuition fees depend on the college or course that you are planning to pursue. They differ from college to college. However, international students almost always pay significantly more than American students.
The cost of undergraduate degrees in the US varies greatly between institutions, and it is even higher for international students. International students pay $25,000-$35,000 per year at a public university and $30,000-$45,000 at private colleges on average. The cost can reach up to $50,000-$55,000 per year for some private colleges.
For a cheaper option, you can go to a community college. You will receive an associate’s degree instead of a bachelor’s degree because community colleges provide 2-year courses. They can charge you $2500-$3000 per year. You can use the associate’s degree as a qualification for the first half of your bachelor’s degree and later you can apply for a master’s degree as well.
All the fees depend on the courses that you choose. In general a Ph.D. or master’s courses will cost less than the MBA, JD, or MD courses. International students usually pay $20,000-$35,000 for public colleges and $35,000-$50.000 for private colleges per year.
Most colleges offer their international students on-campus residence. The residence is often called a “dorm room” or dormitory. Students usually share a room with 2 or 3 other students. Colleges provide daily essentials like water, electricity, and the internet. Students also share bathrooms, showers, and so on. It depends on the college how much they charge for on-campus accommodation. On average this is between $5000-$8000 per year.
However, you can choose to stay at a non-campus residence as well. You can share an apartment with other students or you can live alone as well. The rent depends on the area you are staying in. The Midwest region is cheaper than the East and Northeast in the US. But, you have to pay your electricity, internet, and water bills along with the rent. The usual rate for a single bedroom apartment is between $6,000-$15,000 per year – depending on the apartment and location.
It will be a good idea to make some savings for your daily and basic needs like emergencies, shopping, groceries, food, water, clothes, books, and study materials. When you live abroad you should track even your smallest expenses. This will help you to keep an eye on your overall expenses and you can save or set a budget for a period.
A good estimate would be $10,000-$12,000 per year for international students. The cost might vary where you are staying.
A student visa is mandatory for all international students. It can be a long process as well. As an international student, you have to apply and get accepted by a Student and Visitor Exchange Program (SEVP) certified college. After the approval process, you will receive the I-20 from where all of your information will be recorded.
Visa applicants have to pay a non-refundable fee. All students are categorized as F, M, or J, depending on their courses, merit, and colleges. They have to pay $350 as a SEVP fee and a visa application fee of $160.
Staying so far away from your home can be hard. Thousands of international students get injured or need medical attention throughout their courses. Student health insurance provides international students with financial support in these kinds of situations. International students must have proof of health insurance to get admission to US colleges. Without health insurance, international students can not apply for US colleges.
Under the age of 25, international students can expect to pay $30-$140 for health insurance per month depending on the college and the health insurance package.
Usually, most colleges provide dormitories to their international students. When you stay inside the college campus you won’t be using transportation too much, unless you are going somewhere off-campus. However, if you choose to live outside of the college campus, you will need transportation. Luckily, in the US transportation costs are not that high, and there are multiple options to choose from. You can get cabs, trains, and buses or you can use vehicle rental facilities.
Bus and train passes cost around $30-$50 per month for students. For additional expenses, you can expect to pay around $100-$120 per month in your total transportation. However, that cost mostly depends on where you are staying.
Yes, it is costly to study in the US. International students pay around $32,000-$60,000 per year depending on the university and the course. It is a lot of money but there are various options and opportunities available for international students. You can get the facilities of international student financial aid, international scholarships, international student loans, and help from private and government organizations as well.
According to The Canadian Bureau for International Education, 642,480 international students studied in Canada in 2019. This represents a 185% increase in international students in Canada since 2010. Canada is the 4th most popular destination for international students, behind the USA, the UK, and China.
Canada is one of the leading first-world countries known for its economic abundance and high standard of living. Because of this, their educational system gets great reviews and that’s what international students are looking for. Canadian schools are equipped with the latest equipment and with proper resources required to get the best educational experience possible.
Canada is best known for being one of the most tolerant countries when it comes to skin color and nationality. This makes it a prime destination for international students who wish to avoid the risk of encountering racism or xenophobia.
The crime rate is minimal in Canada because of its strict security and adherence to the law. Canadians are also naturally peace and law-abiding citizens, making it a great country to study in. No need to worry about distractions and potential safety hazards because its authorities are working round the clock to provide and maintain a safe and secure place conducive for studying.
96% of international students recommend Canada as a study destination, while 60% of international students say that they plan to apply for permanent residence in Canada. This is one of the top reasons why they want to get education loans for international students in the country.
In terms of student numbers, the nationalities with the largest representation of students in Canada are China (with around 22% of the market) and India (with around 34% of the market). US students represent only around 2% of all international students in Canada.
Across Canada, the province with the largest number of international students is Ontario (48% of international students) with the next most populous provinces being British Columbia (23%) and Quebec (14%).
IEFA.org can connect international students with education loan providers where they can access loans without cosigners, collateral, or credit history. These are available to students from 190+ countries pursuing degrees in any academic field.
International student loans are made available to international and DACA students studying in the USA and Canada. Undergraduate and graduate students within two years of graduating are eligible.
These loans can be used for past, current, and future semesters, and you can use the funds to pay for expenses including tuition, accommodation, food, insurance, and books.
Please note that every case is different, but here is an example for informative use only – this is not a guarantee of costs for your individual circumstances.
An international (non-US, non-Canadian) student studying a Master’s-level program borrowing $10,000 USD would expect to repay $100.54 per month during their studies and for 6 months after graduation, and then $141.62 per month thereafter.
Find out more and apply for your International Student Loan in Canada today.
The latest data covering international students in the USA and American students studying abroad has been released – here are the highlights:
Over 1 million international students studied in the US in 2019/20, including those taking an academic program and those on OPT (Optional Practical Training).
That’s over 5% of the total number of enrolled students, but it is almost 2% (or 20,000 students) lower than the previous period. Early indications suggest that due to the pandemic international student enrolment in 2020 could be down by a further 16%.
Almost 350,000 US students studied abroad for academic credit in the 2018/19 academic year (the latest data available).
That’s almost 2% higher than the previous year – continuing the trend which has only been increasing for over 10 consecutive years.
Incoming students to the US came mainly from China (35%) and India (18%).
The top 10 countries of origin for incoming students were:
California was the individual state that hosted the most international students in total (with over 160,000).
The single most popular institution in the US for international students was New York University – hosting over 20,000 students from around the world!
Outgoing US students’ top destinations were the UK (11%), Italy (11%) and Spain (10%).
The top 10 destination countries for US study abroad students were:
For more on this data please visit https://opendoorsdata.org/annual-release/
If you’re studying abroad you may be able to fund part of your education with a loan:
Read more on the blog.
Or search our scholarships listings.
Fiqah, who comes from Brunei, is pursuing a Masters degree in Documentary Filmmaking at New York University and hopes to diversify the film industry by shining a spotlight on underrepresented groups.
You can also see the other prize-winning entries:
Aashna Singh is the $500 Second Place Winner with “The Home of an International Student”
The $250 Third Place Winner was “Dear 2021” by Anna Julia De Camargo Correa
And the $1,000 Viewers’ Choice Winner was Larissa Silveira with “Story of My Life”
Many congratulations to all the winners!
CAN INTERNATIONAL STUDENTS GET SCHOLARSHIPS?
Many colleges and universities around the world offer scholarships for international students as part of their financial aid packages. If you’re studying outside of your home country, you should definitely see if there are scholarships for international students available at the school you will be attending.
An international scholarship will help to offset the cost of attendance at a university abroad.
More than one million international students study at U.S. colleges and universities every year. With many more studying in other countries around the world, too.
Universities and private sponsors offer a wide array of programs with various amounts for tuition and fees. Many schools offer international student scholarships in order to attract a diverse range of students to study at their institution.
Getting a study abroad scholarship can make a huge difference if you want to study in another country. Why? Because the majority of schools often have two levels of tuition fees. One for residents of the state or country you study in, and the other for non-residents. Without additional financial aid it is difficult to afford an international education.
Full ride scholarships pay the cost of tuition in full – plus, other expenses like fees, meals and housing.
In the US alone, according to the Fulbright Commission, over 600 universities offer scholarships worth $20,000 or more to international students. Around 250 schools in the US offer ‘full ride’ scholarships.
The Rotary Peace Fellowship is one example of a full-ride scholarship for international students. This scholarship covers tuition, fees, housing and travel costs. It also covers internship and field study expenses. It is for international graduates who want to pursue a master’s degree in areas related to peace, conflict prevention and resolution.
The process of applying for an international scholarship will vary from one school to another – or if you are applying with an external sponsor. There is some paperwork to complete in order to apply. As a student from another country, this may be complex as depending on your destination country you may need to fill out forms that are not in your native language.
In many cases you’ll want to make sure to practice your English writing skills if you are applying to attend school in an English-speaking country.
It is quite common for scholarship applications to require an essay to be submitted along with the paperwork.
Before you apply, do some research on the values held high by your intended school. Apart from good grades many schools are looking for students with character. Leadership, experience in work or as a volunteer, and good communication skills are also highly valued.
Do your best to communicate all of the above in your application and adhere to any special requirements the school or sponsor has. And make sure you stick to the application deadline as a late entry will not usually be considered.
For listings of scholarships for international students, see IEFA.org.
Many study abroad programs around the world offer scholarships. You should look for nonprofit organisations in your field and check your university website for their undergraduate and graduate scholarships listings.
The types of scholarship program available might depend on your status – whether you are studying abroad for a semester or full degree. Your status as an undergraduate or graduate student also plays a role in the type of scholarship you may be eligible for.
In any case, the majority of international scholarships do not charge any application fees – if you are applying for a private scholarship and are asked for a payment up front in order to secure the scholarship, you should be very cautious and ensure that this is a reputable organization – be wary of scams targeting vulnerable international students.
Many countries have universities that offer scholarships to international students.
The United States is one of the most popular with students from other countries. But if you are an American and want to earn your degree abroad, there may be options too – just as if you are an international student in any country.
For example, if you want to study in China there are Chinese government scholarships.
There are tuition-free public universities in Germany. Norway, Australia, Sweden are other countries that encourage international students to study there through incentives such as scholarships.
Find an extensive list of scholarships at IEFA.org/scholarships.
US Citizens studying abroad: Can You Get Financial Aid For Studying Abroad
International Student sin the US: Financial Aid For International Students in the US: Explained
If you’re a student from the United States, you could be eligible for financial support through the standard federal FAFSA program, meaning studying at a foreign university may not be as difficult to finance as you’d imagined! You might want to study abroad as part of an exchange program for a semester or an academic year, or even for your undergraduate degree or as a graduate student.
Do you have a dream of studying in the UK, France, Germany, Italy or somewhere else?
Technically the “Free Application for Federal Student Aid” is the Federal Student Aid system operated by the US Department of Education.
Every year, many thousands of US students and permanent residents complete the FAFSA application forms to check their financial aid eligibility for their higher education. These could be grant programs or loans (or both). Of course the main difference between a grant and a loan is that you have to repay the loan.
Yes! Federal Student Loan funding can be used to pay for your studies at an international school!
There are roughly 750 institutions outside of the US (about 600 in Europe and the rest in other countries) that have been approved by the US Department of Education to use federal funding or to defer other study loan payments. Unfortunately federal grants (i.e. Pell Grants) through this program are not eligible for study abroad.
Whether or not foreign universities are eligible for federal loans is decided by the US Department of Education. There is an official list of recognised international schools. You can find it at studentaid.gov.
Europe is home to some of the world’s most famous and most historic universities like Oxford and Cambridge in the UK and many around the continent offering high quality education and wonderful international experience. It’s an incredibly popular destination for international students from the US and around the world. Many universities are eligible for study abroad funding. You can find out if the school you choose is eligible by looking at the US Department of Education list, or checking a site like InternationalStudentLoan – because if a school is approved for private student loans then it must be approved for federal loans. Don’t forget that you must also be attending an approved program at the school.
If the Federal Student Aid isn’t enough or you don’t qualify, maybe you can get a study abroad scholarship or student loan from a private sponsor or lender – these are some of your financial aid options. Study abroad scholarships, grants and similar awards may be available directly from schools or private institutions. Loans may be available from private lenders, but in order to be eligible for private loans, a school must be eligible for FAFSA loans first.
You should speak to the financial aid office to find out what support the school offers to their international students.
Check to see if your chosen university is approved for FAFSA, and if they aren’t ask them if they offer financial aid packages or private loans for international students or know of any lenders that do.
You should see if there are study abroad scholarships offered by your chosen school and private scholarships – you can search these at internationalscholarships.com
Find a loan:
Read Next: How to find study abroad scholarships
For 15 years, InternationalStudent.com has been organising a contest for international students to create a video about an aspect of their life and their experiences or hopes of studying abroad.
Despite the very different landscape for international student travel we’re experiencing in 2020, InternationalStudent.com is bringing the contest back – and this year it has a special tagline: Life After Lockdown.
The concept is simple – create a video up to 2 minutes long about one or both of the following:
Do this well enough to impress the judges and you could win the top prize of $4,000.
There are also prizes for the 2nd and 3rd place entries, as well as $1,000 for the Viewers’ Choice Award Winner which is voted on by the InternationalStudent.com community!
The submission deadline is 13 October 2020, so be sure to check out all the rules and details by visiting International Student Travel Video Contest
Want more – read the IEFA Blog.
We don’t need to tell you that despite COVID-19 impacting in-person classes, exams and plans for just about everyone around the world, International Education doesn’t stand still for long. We’re excited about the start of the Fall Semester 2020.
Here’s our roundup of some of the news in International Education that caught our attention August:
PEO International Peace Scholarship Awarded
Paramita Choudhury, a second-year doctoral student at the University of Arkansas, has received the P.E.O International Peace Scholarship. P.E.O. is a philanthropic organization with the mission to help women support their educational goals through loans, grants and scholarships. One of the goals of the P.E.O International Peace Scholarship is to foster a better understanding among the peoples of the world. Paramita will receive $6,000 for tuition and expenses related to her research in dental anthropology.
Texas Student Recieves Department of State Scholarship to Study Hindi
Josh Mysore, a senior at the St. Mark’s School in Plano, Texas, has been awarded a National Security Language Initiative for Youth Virtual Summer Intensive full scholarship to study the Hindi language this summer.
Josh is one of 500 students selected from roughly 3000 applicants from across the United States who will study a foreign language this summer as part of a virtual exchange.
Nigerian ballet dancer inspires youth
Daniel Owoseni was told that as an African he was not eligible for an international scholarship. Despite this setback, he taught himself ballet through YouTube, and 3 years ago set up his very own dance academy.
This story should inspire you not to give up, even when things are hard!
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If you need additional funding for your international education, a loan may be the perfect solution: