Everything You Need to Know about Scholarship for International Students

Scholarships for International Students in USA: A Complete Guide

Many students now a days want to pursue higher education in a foreign country. Their dream is real but is a costly affair. Studying abroad in countries like the USA, Canada, Australia etc is very costly. Every international student can’t afford it. But they need not worry as there are scholarships to help them.

These scholarships bring opportunities for international students to fulfil their dream of studying abroad and diminish the financial constraint. Scholarships are like lifelines for international students which provides them financial support that is beyond the tuition fees.

The scholarship includes living expenses, accommodation costs, library expenses, transportation expenses etc. This makes foreign education accessible to a wider range of international students. Apart from financial benefits, scholarships also provide additional benefits like mentorship, networking opportunities etc.

Study destination also plays an important role for international students. Several countries have now become education hub that offers a variety of scholarships too. The United States, United Kingdom, Australia, Switzerland and Canada are pioneers among them.

In this blog, we will explore in detail the role of scholarships for international students.

Understanding the Scholarship Landscape

Scholarship has an important role to play in helping international students to fulfil their dream of foreign education. Let’s navigate some of the important aspects of scholarship like types of scholarships and eligibility criteria.

Different Types of Scholarships

  1. Merit-Based Scholarships 

    Students qualify for these scholarships based on their academic performance. Their grades in schools and colleges are taken into consideration for this.

  2. Need-Based Scholarships 

    This type of scholarship is aimed at students facing financial difficulties. Here financial status of the applicant is taken into primary consideration.

  3. Specialized Scholarships

    These types of scholarships are for specific talents, skills or fields of study. They consider those students who are outstanding in their talent, skill or field.

Eligibility Criteria

There can be variations in criteria depending on different scholarships. But some of the common eligibility factors for scholarships are academic performance, standardised scores, recommendation letters, personal statements etc. Some scholarships can also consider extracurricular activities, community help, as well as special talents or skills.

Top 3 Scholarships in the UK

The United Kingdom has a world-class education system which attracts thousands of international students from all over the world. Here are some of the top three scholarships to study in the UK for international students.

  1. Chevening Scholarships 

    Chevening Scholarships targets outstanding students who have leadership capability. These scholarships cover full tuition fees, living expenses and all other types of allowances. This scholarship allows you to pursue a one-year master’s degree at a UK university.

  2. Commonwealth Scholarships and Fellowship Plans (CSFP) 

    The CSFP is an initiative by the UK government to support the students of commonwealth countries. These scholarships are given for master’s and doctoral programs. This scholarship covers tuition fees, travel expenses and a stipend.

  3. Gates Cambridge Scholarship 

    This Scholarship was started by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation. It is awarded to those students who are passionate about improving the lives of others.

A Look at Australian Scholarships

Australia has a world-class education system which has made it a very popular destination among international students. There are a lot of scholarships available to study in Australia. Some of the major scholarships for international students in Australia are as under: –

  1. Australian Awards

    The Australian government funds the Australian awards scholarships program. They focus on students from developing nations and cover tuition fees, living expenses, and additional allowances.

  2.  Endeavour Scholarships and Fellowships

    This is again an initiative by the Australian government and is basically for those international students who want to do short-term study and research-related programs in Australia.

  3. Research Training programs (RTP) 

    Those international students who have an interest in research degrees can opt for RTP scholarships. The program is administered by individual universities and covers tuition fees and living allowances.

Canadian Scholarships: Opportunities Galore

Canada is a country full of friendly communities and top education. There are numerous scholarships for international students in Canada. These scholarships help in making education more accessible to everyone.

  1. Vanier Canada Graduate Scholarships

    Vanier Canada Graduate Scholarships are specifically for top doctoral candidates from around the world. The scholarship provides financial support of $500,000 per year for 3 years for doctoral studies in health, engineering, humanities, natural sciences and social sciences.

  2.  Trudeau Foundation Scholarships 

    The Pierre Elliott Trudeau Foundation provides scholarships for doctoral candidates in the social sciences and humanities.

  3. Canadian Commonwealth Scholarship Program

    Canadian Bureau of International Education (CBIE) administers this program. The program supports students from commonwealth countries to pursue advanced studies in Canada.

  4. Banting Postdoctoral Fellowships  

    These scholarships are aimed at postdoctoral researchers. It provides financial aid to international students who undertake research-related work from Canadian institutions.

Exploring Opportunities in the US

The US is the education hub with the top-ranked universities in the world. To facilitate education for all, the US offers various scholarships for international students in the USA. Here are the highlights of some top scholarship options.

  1. Fullbright Foreign Student Program

    The Fullbright program is one of the most reputed international scholarship programs. The US Department of State administers it and supports graduate-level study or research-related programs.

  2. Hubert H. Humphrey Fellowship Program 

    It is a non-degree scholarship program for mid-career professionals. The program has a major focus on professional development. It encourages leadership skills.

  3. Microsoft Scholarship Program

    The Microsoft Scholarship Program is majorly for students who want to pursue a career in the field of science, engineering and related fields. The program provides financial aid and mentorship.

  4. Mastercard Foundation Scholars Program

    By partnering with US universities, the MasterCard Foundation offers comprehensive scholarships to excellent students from Africa with the aim of leadership development, community service and ethical leadership.

Switzerland: A Hub for Academic Excellence and Scholarships

Switzerland is popular for its beautiful landscapes and high-quality education. The country offers many scholarships to international students which makes the destination a dream destination for many students. 

  1. Swiss Government Excellence Scholarships

    These scholarships are funded by the Swiss government and are for foreign scholars who want to pursue postgraduate studies in Switzerland. The program encourages international  exchange and research collaboration.

  2. ETH Zurich Excellence Masters Scholarships

    ETH Zurich which is one of the top universities in Switzerland, provides this scholarship to international students to study master’s degree.

  3. University-Specific Scholarships 

    Many universities in Switzerland offer their scholarships to students. These scholarships can be discipline-focused focusing on areas like science, technology, humanities etc.

  4. Nestle MBA Scholarships for Women

    The Nestle Scholarship for Women promotes gender equality in business education. The scholarship is offered by the IMDB Business School and supports women from all over the world.

Common Scholarship Application Challenges and Tips

There are a lot of scholarship opportunities for international students from different countries. But still, students face a lot of challenges while applying for scholarships. 

Addressing common hurdles in the application process

  1. Intense Competition

    There are lakhs of students applying for these scholarships. So, the competition is tough. Applicants shall try to bring out their unique qualities and skills in the application. 
  2. Document Challenges

    There are so many documents required for the application of a scholarship. Collecting documents in itself is a big task. One shall plan this well in advance and can even create a check-list to avoid last time’s mess. 
  3. Crafting Appealing Personal Statements

    A good personal statement is necessary for selection. Authentically articulate the statement and try to showcase your passion and future goals in the statement. 

Providing tips for overcoming them

  1. Start Early 

    Start the application process for a scholarship as early as possible. This will ensure that you get sufficient time for the collection of documents and writing the application. 

  2. Seek Guidance 

    You can take the help of mentors and counsellors if the need arises. Global Colliance is the top overseas consultant in India. They can help you with this and provide the right guidance. 

  3. Thorough Proofreading 

    Avoid spelling and grammatical errors in the application. This can reject your chances of selection. Proofread the application multiple times before submission. 

Navigating the Application Process

The successful application process for scholarships needs a proper systematic approach. Here is a step-by-step guide to help international students. 

Step-by-step guide for applying for scholarships

  1. Research

    Do a bit of research and find scholarships that align with your academic goals. Do take into consideration factors like eligibility criteria, application requirements and potential benefits. 
  2. Prepare Documents

    Documentation plays an important role in the application process for scholarships. Collect academic records, letters of recommendation, personal statement and other required documents. Before submission check that the documents are accurate enough. 
  3. Crafting a Compelling Application

    Try to tailor the application as per the scholarship. Showcase your qualities, skills, achievements and aspirations. Personalize your application so that it can present genuineness and authenticity. 
  4. Meet the Deadlines

    Consider the deadlines very cautiously. Create a timeline for each application and mark key dates. Applying before the deadline will always keep you on the safer side. 

Documentation for Scholarship Application

Documents is an important element in the scholarship application process. Here are the main documents required for the scholarship application. 

  1. Academic Transcripts and Certificates

    Provide proper documentation of your academic achievements. Apart from that transcripts also shall be translated with accuracy. 

  2.  Letters of Recommendation

    These letters showcase the applicant’s qualifications and character. Choose those recommenders who can showcase your achievements and strengths at academic and professional levels. 

  3. Statement of Purpose

    Statement shall represent one’s goals, aspirations and relevance of scholarship for your future. It helps the selection committee to understand the applicant’s motivations. 

  4. Language Proficiency Certificates 

    In some scholarships, you also need to submit proof of language proficiency like TOEFL, IELTS etc. 

  5. Resume

    Your resume shall demonstrate your work experience, achievements, extra-curricular activities etc. This document gives an overview of an applicant’s background. 

  6. Proof of Financial Stability 

    Some scholarships may also require you to justify your financial status. For this, you may have to submit bank statements, sponsorship letters, financial affidavits etc. 

  7. Passport and Visa Documents 

    Your passport shall be intended for the duration of the study. Also, prepare the visa documents in advance to avoid end-time hassle. 


Scholarships play an important role in higher education for international students. It takes care of their finances and opens new doors of opportunities. The majority of countries like Australia, the UK, Canada, Switzerland, the USA etc. offer different types of scholarships. 

One needs to have a proper application to get a scholarship. Global Colliance- one of the best study abroad consultant can help you in this aspect. Remember that scholarships are not just financial aid but a gateway to growth and learning. 

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