Funding can be the biggest obstacle for many students looking to study abroad. Students are often overwhelmed by the costs of a study abroad program, but equally unaware of the millions of dollars in scholarships available for students to study abroad. Don’t let this misconception prevent you from exploring the world--there are MANY study abroad scholarships out there for students of all backgrounds. Here are the top eight study abroad scholarships that you do not want to miss out on.
1. DiversityAbroad.com Study Abroad Scholarship
Diversity Abroad, in cooperation with the AIFS Foundation, offers $500 scholarships for students who seek to study abroad. Five scholarships are available for the summer, five are available for the fall, and five scholarships are available for the spring.
Who Can Apply: Economically disadvantaged students, first-generation, students with disabilities and ethnic and racial diverse students are strongly encouraged to apply.
Deadline: Throughout the year. Deadlines are typically in March (summer programs), April (fall programs), and October (spring programs).
2. Fund for Education Abroad (FEA)
FEA is committed to increasing the opportunities for dedicated American students to participate in high-quality, rigorous education abroad programs by reducing financial restrictions through the provision of grants and scholarships.FEA offers up to twenty general scholarships with awards up to $10,000 each as well as several dedicated scholarships (including one for LGBTQI students, students attending a college or university in Massachusetts, Maine, Vermont, New Hampshire, Rhode Island or Connecticut, and students attending a college or university in the Central Texas region).
Who Can Apply: Applicants must be US citizens or permanent residents currently enrolled as undergraduates in US universities/colleges who plan to study abroad for at least four weeks. Fund for Education Abroad awards are intended to support students planning to participate in high-quality, rigorous education abroad programs. For dedicated scholarships applicants must meet the eligibility requirements in addition to any requirements specific to the dedicated scholarship.
Deadline: Throughout the year.
3. SIT Study Abroad Pell Grant Match
SIT is committed to making its study abroad programs affordable for a diversity of students, including low-income undergraduates who might otherwise not pursue international opportunities. SIT provides matching grants to ALL students receiving Federal Pell Grant funding when it is applied to any SIT semester program. SIT Study Abroad scholarships are awarded to highly qualified students who demonstrate financial need.
Who Can Apply: U.S. undergraduate students who are receiving a Federal Pell Grant
Deadlines: Throughout the year. April 1 (summer programs), May 15 (fall programs), November 1 (spring programs).
4. Boren Awards for International Study
The David L. Boren Scholarships and Fellowships, initiatives of the National Security Education Program, provide unique funding opportunities for U.S. undergraduate and graduate students to study in world regions critical to U.S. interests, including Africa, Asia, Central & Eastern Europe, Eurasia, Latin America, and the Middle East. Boren Scholars and Fellows represent a variety of academic backgrounds, but all are interested in studying less commonly taught languages, including, but not limited to Arabic, Chinese, Korean, Portuguese, Russian, and Swahili.
Who Can Apply: The Boren Awards promote long-term linguistic and cultural immersion, and therefore the majority of Boren Scholars and Fellows study overseas for at least six months. In exchange for funding, recipients make a commitment to seek work in the federal government. Award amounts are up to a maximum of $20,000 for the Boren Scholarships and $30,000 for the Boren Fellowships.
Deadline: Boren Fellowships are typically due in mid-late January whereas Boren Scholarships are typically due in early February.
5. Academic Programs International (API) First Generation Scholarship
API supports students who are first in their families to attend a college or university through a First Generation Scholarship for study abroad. One deserving student each semester will receive an award in the amount of $750 towards the cost of their API program. This scholarship considers both need and merit, and asks students to explain their financial circumstances, and to describe how they feel studying abroad is a valuable use of their time and resources. For more information on all of API's scholarship opportunities, including a FULL TUITION Diversity Scholarship visit the API scholarship opportunities portal.
Who Can Apply: Students must have a 2.75 GPA and have applied to an API study abroad program.
Deadline: June 10 (fall or year programs), October 15 (spring semester or winter quarter programs), and December 15 (spring quarter).
6. IES Diversity Scholarships
IES Abroad is committed to fostering and supporting a diverse student body. The Diversity Scholarships are one way to encourage and support students from a range of institutions and underrepresented populations, including students from underrepresented racial and ethnic groups, first generation college students, students from low income families and students with a history of overcoming adversity. IES Diversity Scholarships include: HBCU Scholarships, HACU - IES Abroad Merit/Need-Based Scholarships, Merit-Based Scholarships for Under-Represented Students, and Merit-Based David Porter Diversity Scholarship (up to $5,000!).
Who Can Apply: To be eligible for any IES Abroad aid, you must apply to and attend an IES Abroad program and your home school must be a member or associate member of the IES Abroad Consortium. In addition, your home school must have a policy of transferring at least 75% of institutional aid for study abroad.
Deadline: May 1 (fall or academic year programs), October 25 (spring or calendar year programs)
7. CIEE Global Access Initiative (GAIN) Scholarship
CIEE created the Global Access Initiative (GAIN) to help students overcome the major barriers to studying abroad, namely costs and curriculum requirements. GAIN aids in the diversification of study abroad by providing overseas opportunities for students who are economically challenged, or from diverse backgrounds or underrepresented fields of study. Each year, CIEE provides $1 million in grants and scholarships to expand access for students to full-year, semester, and summer study abroad programs.
Who Can Apply: Students who are economically challenged, or from diverse backgrounds or underrepresented fields of study.
Deadline: April 1 of the year PRIOR to the start of the study abroad program (summer, fall, and academic year programs), November 1 of the year PRIOR to the start of the study abroad program (winter, spring, and calendar year programs).
8. The Benjamin A. Gilman International Scholarship Program
The Gilman Scholarship Program offers awards for undergraduate study abroad and was established by the International Academic Opportunity Act of 2000. The program aims to diversify the kinds of students who study abroad and the countries and regions where they go by supporting undergraduates who might otherwise not participate due to financial constraints.
Who Can Apply: U.S. undergraduate students who are receiving Federal Pell Grant funding at a two-year or four-year college or university.
Deadline: Throughout the year.
Remember, there is no limit to the amount of financial aid you may receive…so, apply for as many scholarships and grants as you possibly can—the more funding, the better! Be creative and be sure to show off your passions and creativity when applying. Happy travels!