What financial aid is available for international students?
The financial aid system for colleges and universities in the United States is not set up [use thesaurus] for the benefit of international students. Financial aid is focused mainly on domestic students who need it. This brings up many different issues. First, on one hand it seems fair that the financial aid that is available goes to citizens of this country since they do live here and it seems that should be a benefit of being a citizen of the United States. On the other hand, it brings up some issues because there are undocumented students living in the United States today and they do not have the financial resources to pursue a college education. Thus, those very students who are first generation are not citizens and therefore cannot use the power of an education to raise their status from the one in which they have lived throughout their lives up to this point. Thus, many immigrants who are undocumented struggle to find a way to pursue an education when most of the time they have little to no resources to do so. This is a hot topic for some educators and can result in what some may deem a tragedy for the students who have worked very diligently to be accepted at a great college or just be college bound at all and not have the opportunity to pursue that. That being said, fact does remain that financial aid is reserved for American citizens and most citizens would think that that would qualify that decision as a fair one.
One other aspect of the lack of educational funding for international students is that colleges today, particularly the University of California system use the fact that international students cannot gain financial aid as a means to increase their funding. That is, every international student represents the full price of admission, which at these days can be upwards of $50,000 per student. Whereas a domestic student most likely will qualify for some sort of financial aid.
So the financial aid available to international students is extremely limited but at the same time it is a shame that there are billions and billions of dollars of scholarship money available to domestic students and so few take advantage of the opportunity to pursue those scholarships because they require additional work such as essays or completing paperwork or asking for recommendations. However, students who are motivated enough to make the most of the resources could actually save their families a lot of money – money that international students and undocumented students would [most likely take advantage of/die for that money] so in other words, domestic students forgo the opportunity to pursue a lot of money in scholarships whereas ironically, the international students and the undocumented students do not have even the right to pursue that funding.