Study Abroad Scholarships

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How Do You Get Study Abroad Scholarships? 

Study abroad scholarships may help make your study abroad experience more affordable. Many universities, governments, and international programs offer scholarships for study abroad. Some college students may also wonder how to get scholarships to study abroad. You may find scholarship opportunities from study abroad programs such as CIEE. You should also check with the foreign language department and study abroad office for available awards.

Study abroad for academic credit is really popular says the Institute of International Education. Over 1 million international students come to the United States to earn a degree. Also per the IIE, about 341,751 U.S. undergraduate students studied abroad in 2017 to 2018. Reasons for studying abroad are to grow global skills, volunteer, intern or find a short term job.

Start the application process right away if you meet the scholarship’s criteria. It is also wise to understand your budget and pick a location you want to travel to. Here are a few factors to check for while you’re searching and applying.

  • All about location: Study in a specific city or country like the Middle East 
  • Language study: About learning or teaching a foreign language 
  • Student specific: For minority students, certain races, genders, religions, LGBT, etc.
  • Government fundedCome from a government agency as an incentive to study foreign affairs
  • Fields of study: Funds for specific majors that may have you enroll in required courses
  • Degree focused: Bachelor’s degree master’s, or PhD
  • Period of time: Academic year, semester programs, or summer study
  • School specific: Colleges in the U.S and abroad may offer financial aid 

What are the Eligibility Requirements for Abroad Scholarships?

Many scholarships for study abroad base decisions on merit or need. Merit is based on your academic performance. On the contrary, financial need looks at the Student Aid Report. This is on the FAFSA filed with your school. Other criteria might include: 

  • University students from a specific school only
  • U.S. citizens or legal permanent residents of the United States 
  • Ability to speak the language of the destination country
  • One semester of relevant college level course work 
  • Leadership or community service experience 
  • Being a full time student
  • Degree level and college major
  • Member of a certain group, agency, or organization

10 Study Abroad Scholarships You Should Apply for in 2021

These scholarships are for U.S. college students and others who may qualify. When filling out a scholarship application, you may need to submit an essay, transcripts, letters of recommendation. You should apply before the application deadline. There may be a limit on the number of award recipients. The due date tends to be sometime in the academic term before your study abroad program begins.

  1. Boren Awards
  2. Golden Key Graduate Scholar Award
  3. Golden Key Joan Nelson Study Abroad Scholarship 
  4. Dr. Marianne Cooley Study Abroad Scholarship (China) 
  5. Frank and Thu Triplett Study Abroad Scholarship (France) 
  6. USAC’s University of Bristol (Bristol, England) Study Abroad Program
  7. Janice Proctor Memorial Scholarship (Fall – Torino, Italy)
  8. USAC Stem Scholarship 
  9. Good Colleges Study Abroad Award
  10. Travel Safe Abroad Scholarship Program 

What Do Study Abroad Scholarships Cover?

Scholarships for studying abroad may vary along with living expenses in every city or country. The financial support you receive may cover transport in the host country, airfare, meals, books and courses. Some awards may provide a stipend for housing. You may have to pay out of pocket so make sure to stay within your budget.

8 Tips to Applying for Scholarships for Study Abroad 

  1. Pick a destination for your study abroad and be clear about your budget
  2. Reach out to your university, guidance counselor, financial aid office and ask for help
  3. Apply for as many scholarships that you are eligible for
  4. Contact the provider for each study abroad scholarship about details on what it takes to earn one.
  5. Provide a strong application by updating your resume.
  6. Perfect your application essay but don’t copy and paste answers, be unique
  7. Follow the application directions to complete the paperwork for each one 
  8. Don’t let grades suffer, stay organized and apply early or by the application deadline

Study Abroad Scholarships by Destination 

There are over 180 host regions that American students go to study abroad. Of them, the 5 most popular countries that community college students chose in 2019 are Italy, Spain, UK, Ireland and France. 

Scholarships for Study Abroad in Africa

In 2017 to 2018 about 14,416 U.S. study abroad students went to Africa. Places like Cape Town, Ghana, Nigeria and Kenya were among the most visited. Studying abroad in Africa might give you the chance to help the local community or study wildlife. For instance, you might spend a semester studying an endangered species or how to bring water to an underserved region.

There’s a need based award from the School for Field Studies (SFS). Heather Jo Leibowitz Memorial Scholarship honors the memory of Heather Jo who helped communities in Tanzania. Preference goes to those students who want to follow in her footsteps. Once accepted into a program and having paid a commitment deposit, you may apply for SFS financial aid.

Scholarships for Study Abroad in Asia

About 5.2% of U.S. students chose to study in Japan in 2017 to 2018, making Asia a very popular place. The region offers an opportunity to engage with the host culture, learn an Asian language and study its history, religions and more. 

Freeman ASIA awards are for U.S. undergraduate students with proven financial need. Students may want to study abroad in Southeast Asia. The funds help the recipient with the cost of the study abroad program. Grant amounts are up to $3,000 for summer programs. For each semester, awards of up to $5,000 and up to $7,000 for a full academic year. 

Scholarships for Study Abroad in Europe

Europe hosts over half of U.S. study abroad students. Italy, Spain and France lead the way, all rich in history, culture, language and things to see and do once done for the day. Other students also head to Amsterdam, Belgium, London, Austria, Portugal and Prague.

Every year the German Exchange Service (DAAD) supports over 100,000 German and international students and researchers from around the globe. DAAD scholarships are mainly for graduates, doctoral and postdocs. As a result, they fund study and research visits and some intern positions in Germany. Depending on the program, the award may consist of a flat rate travel stipend and monthly scholarship sum. At the moment, it is €750 ($886.23) for undergraduates, € 850 for graduates and €1,200 for doctoral/PhD students.

Scholarships for Study Abroad in Latin America

Latin America spans 33 countries including Chile, Argentina, Peru, Columbia, Ecuador and Guatemala. Some students choose a country to explore their roots, learn a language, teach or help a community in need. 

HACU along with AIFS offers scholarships for U.S. college students in need. The awards are open to Hispanic students from HACU member schools. If you are eligible, the scholarship pays up to 50% of the AIFS semester or summer program fee. In order to qualify, you must be a current freshman and have one semester of college completed at the time of applying. 

Inter American Press Association Scholarship Program: These awards are for journalists or students in their final year of journalism studies. If you are between 21 and 35 years old and fluent in the language of the host country, you may qualify. The award of $20,000 is for one academic year of study at a Latin American journalism school. Also, you must send in a form and documents related to your program. 

Program Specific Scholarships for Study Abroad

There are several notable providers of study abroad programs. Many have a fund for education abroad scholarships that interested students may apply for. As a rule, program specific awards are for a certain major and may pay for a semester, summer or year long period.

Institute of International Education (IIE) 

IIE commits to diversity and inclusion so supports programs that share these values. They also manage more than 200 programs with participants from over 180 countries. When searching their site, you choose where you are from, what and where you want to study.

Chevron International REACH Scholarship: This program is for full time students in social sciences, arts and humanities. Specifically for the sons and daughters of Chevron employees and retired workers. Use the funds to study in East and South Asia and the Pacific, Europe, Middle East and North and Sub Saharan Africa, or The Americas. Amounts range from $500 to $2,500 for one academic year.

International Studies Abroad (ISA)

There are over 68 abroad programs to choose from the ISA. There are a variety of study abroad programs with internships, volunteer work, intensive language as well as gap year and high school abroad. ISA program cost consist of tuition and fees, housing, insurance, and more. Applicants must apply for Fall, Winter/Spring or Summer. 

Castañeda Partnership ScholarshipThese merit and need based awards help semester students from partner schools with the expenses of studying abroad. Eligible applicants for this study abroad scholarship must complete the ISA Budget and Funding Form in order to prove financial need.

Diversity ScholarshipThe goal of these awards is to help minority students attain a global education. It is open to those who identify with various minority groups and first generation college students as well. You may receive from $2,000 to $5,000 if you are eligible. 

Council on International Education Exchange (CIEE)

CIEE is a nonprofit that offers study abroad programs since 1947. They offer need based, merit and program based scholarships for various academic terms. Search their site by area of study, program type, country, city, terms and language of instruction. 

Need Based Semester Scholarships: These award amounts are based on the EFC from your FAFSA. If you are eligible for a Federal Pell Grant you may receive a GAIN Travel Grant up to $1,000 when you complete a CIEE scholarship application by the due date. Gilman Scholarship applicants may receive a Go Global Grant and a GAIN Travel Grant up to $4,000. 

Merit Based Scholarships: These awards are for eligible applicants with strong academic achievements. There are scholarships to study comparative studies, public health, marine ecology and more. 

The School for Field Studies (SFS)

SFS creates study abroad programs that make use of field based learning and research. Many of their programs also explore the environment and work to create a sustainable future. If interested in their programs, SFS works with your home school to help you fund your studies. All their study abroad scholarships which are need based require you to have a FAFSA on file with your current school. To gain admission, you must be at least 18 years old, have one semester of college level ecology, biology or environmental science and a 2.8 GPA.

Stephen F. Lee Memorial Scholarship: This is an endowed scholarship that honors SFS alumnus and faculty member Stephen F. Lee. Preferred applicants are seeking a marine program in Turks & Caicos of Panama. 

High School Study Abroad Scholarships

Studying abroad may be the experience of a lifetime for high school students. If you haven’t travelled much or would love to travel, then this is a good opportunity to build language skills and enhance your resume. When finding the perfect program, you may want to look for an intensive language study, or research summer options based on your interests.

Congress Bundestag Youth Exchange (CBYX) Scholarship: This award is for motivated high school students aged 15 to 18 ½. Eligible applicants want to experience new cultures and learn a language in Germany. You may also live with a host family while attending a German high school. Other benefits include language lessons. As well as meetings with U.S. and German government representatives. To apply you must have at least 2.5 GPA, and interest in the German language. You need to comply with U.S. Department of State eligibility policy.

Undergraduate Study Abroad Scholarships

Taking your your college experience abroad may expand your mind to new points of view, cultures, languages, art, history and so much more. If you don’t have the financial means to travel, an undergraduate study abroad scholarship might open the door to new adventures. It may also open new networks of potential friends and employers. 

The Boren Scholarships fund study abroad by U.S. undergraduate students in world regions critical to the United States. Award amounts goes by time spent abroad. The award amounts are up to $25,000 for 25 to 52 weeks, $12,500 for 12 to 24 weeks or up to $8,000 for 8 to11 weeks (STEM majors only). There are several Regional Flagship Language Initiatives. You may also design your own study program. Successful applicants understand the national security implications of their studies abroad. You also must show an interest in working for the Federal government. To apply, you must complete a form and send transcripts, two letters of recommendation, language forms, two essays and a program description. 

USAC is another nonprofit that provides study abroad programs in 26 countries. To apply for an USAC STEM scholarship, you must apply to the program first. You may qualify if you are pursuing a bachelor’s degree with a declared STEM major or minor. Eligible applicants must also have a minimum 3.0 GPA. Multiple awards will be given in sums ranging from $750 to $1,000.

Graduate Study Abroad Scholarships

As a graduate student, you may be ready to dive into research and focus on a topic you know about. Taking your studies abroad may be a perfect way to gain a global perspective while improving your language and professional skills. 

You may consider the Churchill Foundation scholarship if you want to pursue a master’s degree in science, mathematics or engineering at a participating institution. This study abroad award for graduate students covers university tuition and fees up to $60,000. You also receive travel and living allowances and special research grant of up to $2,000. Eligible college seniors must show outstanding academic achievements, extensive research experience, and unique personal qualities. 

Government Funded Scholarships

First, you may receive federal student aid for a study abroad program if you are eligible. Your home university must take part in federal aid programs. You also have to submit a Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). Federal student aid may help make international schools more affordable and cover part of the tuition bill. Financial aid may be available to those who qualify.

The U.S. Department of Defense also offers programs that aim to boost skills in foreign language and culture. Boren Awards are one of these initiatives. On the flip side, the Fulbright Foreign Student Program helps young professionals and artists from abroad study and conduct research in the United States. 

The U.S. Department of State’s Benjamin A. Gilman International Scholarship is a grant program. It helps students of limited means to study or intern abroad in order to gain skills in national security and economics. If you are a U.S. citizen and undergraduate receiving Federal Pell Grant funding, you may qualify. About 2,500 scholarship go out each year in amounts of up to $5,000. You must fill out an application form and send two essays and official transcripts.

The ETA programs place Fulbright recipients in classrooms abroad where they help out local English teachers. ETAs help teach English while also serving as cultural ambassadors for the U.S. You first must choose a host country. This could be in Europe, Sub Saharan Africa, South and Central Asia, East Asia Pacific, Middle East and North Africa or the Western hemisphere. The award amount varies as does the number of recipients. But, these tend to be full scholarships worth up to $50,000. Applicants must fill out a form and send support documents. Three letters of recommendation, personal statement, transcript, statement of grant purpose and a language evaluation report.

List of Study Abroad Scholarships

Check out our list of study abroad scholarships worth .

USAC’s University of Bristol (Bristol, England) Study Abroad Program

The University of Bristol is offering £2,000 scholarships to help USAC students make their dreams of studying in England come true. Students with a GPA of 3.25 or higher who will study at the University of Bristol for a semester or year are eligible, and preference will be given to STEM and yearlong students.

Total: $4000

Awards: 4

Deadline: October 15

Benjamin A. Gilman International Scholarship

This scholarship is available for U.S. undergraduate students who plan to study or intern abroad in the same country for at least four weeks; the country cannot be Cuba or on the U.S. State Department’s Travel Warning list. Students must be receiving or will receive a federal Pell Grant.

Total: $4000

Awards: 2500

Deadline: October 06

USAC Explorer Scholarship

These awards are for students not attending a USAC Affiliate University and are seeking degrees. Applicants must have a GPA of 3.0 or higher. USAC may have scholarships specifically allocated to your university.

Total: $10000

Awards: 10

Deadline: October 15

Adobe Creativity Scholarships

The annual Adobe Creativity Scholarships program provide college or university education tuition for up to U.S. $25,000.00 per academic year for required tuition and fees to young people pursuing study in a creative field and using creativity as a force for positive social impact.

Total: $25000

Awards: 1

Deadline: March 12

Robertson Scholars Leadership Program

This award is available for graduating high school seniors who are planning to attend Duke University or the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Applicants must enroll full time, and be high-achieving, well-rounded students. Scholars also have access to generous funding for two semesters of study abroad.

Total: $50000

Awards: 1

Deadline: November 15

Massey University Scholarship (New Zealand)

Massey is offering scholarships of ~$1500 NZD (~$1000 USD) to help USAC students make their dreams of studying in New Zealand come true. Students with a GPA of 2.75 or higher who will study at any of Massey’s campus locations in New Zealand—Palmerston North, Auckland, or Wellington—are eligible.

Total: $4000

Awards: 4

Deadline: October 15

Tortuga Study Abroad Scholarship

The Tortuga Study Abroad Scholarship is awarded biannually to passionate students who want to explore the world! The winner will receive 1 travel backpack, and a $1,000 scholarship. Applicants must be full time undergraduates and accepted into a study abroad program at an accredited institution in the U.S.

Total: $1000

Awards: 1

Deadline: November 15

USAC Legacy Scholarship

To honor USAC’s long history in international education, Legacy Scholarships are available to degree-seeking students who are the children, siblings, and spouses of alumni (a paying participant who previously attended a USAC Program) with a 2.5 GPA or higher.

Total: $5000

Awards: 10

Deadline: October 15

Adobe Design Circle Scholarships

Adobe, through the IIE offers the Design Circle Scholarship to support diversity. Each year, they will award 10 annual college scholarships of up to $25,000 per year for up to four years or $100,000 of undergraduate study. Click to learn more and apply today!

Total: $1000000

Awards: 10

Deadline: March 12

Morehead-Cain Scholars Program

Morehead-Cain supports students studying abroad in many different ways. Applicants must currently attend the University of North Carolina Chapel Hill and planning to do a semester abroad.

Total: $110000

Awards: 70

Deadline: September 10

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