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For general information on scholarships for international students, check out the following websites to search by state and college:
General Information on Scholarships
“Some public and private universities offer financial incentives for students to attend their institution. Most of the institutional aid available to international students is reserved for graduate study in the form of assistantships and fellowships. Because it is uncommon for U.S. institutions to offer aid to undergraduate international students, such scholarships are often quite competitive. Remember that both private and public institutions may waive application fees in some situations; be sure to consult with your university to take advantage of any supplements or waivers they may offer.
Merit-based scholarships are granted on the basis of special skills, talents, or abilities. Your university may have scholarships based on TOEFL scores, academic record, artistic ability, musical ability, or athletic ability. Merit-based scholarships are usually very competitive. To be considered, you will need to demonstrate exceptional ability in the area required.
Need-based scholarships are awarded based on financial need. Those students who can demonstrate need at a predetermined level are eligible for this type of aid.
Academic departments within the university may have funds allocated to assist international students with exceptional need and/or talent. Consult with your university and/or your major department to take advantage of any special funding opportunities they offer.
Some scholarship databases charge fees to users, and other databases provide their services at no cost. In general, the same information is available from both types of database services, so it is not necessary to pay any fee. Ask in advance, and choose the database service that is free of charge. Be especially aware of dishonest scholarship offers: do not send money, bank account numbers, or credit card numbers to any organization that promises a scholarship in return. If you doubt the truthfulness of any scholarship source, consult with the admissions office or the international student office at the university to which you are applying.”
US schools that offer Need-Blind Admission to International Students:
Many schools consider need for financial assistance when reviewing the applications of international students. However, some schools offer need-blind admissions (admit students regardless of their ability to pay) to international students. For admitted students that cannot afford the tuition, the university will award scholarships and other aid. These 7 US schools offer need-blind admissions:
- MIT (MA)
- Harvard University (MA)
- Princeton University (NJ)
- Yale University (CT)
- Williams College (MA)
- Middlebury College (VT)
- Dartmouth College (NH)
Scholarships for International Students in VA
Esperanza Education Fund - $5,000 two-year scholarships and $10,000 four-year scholarships to immigrant students in VA, MD and DC to attend public colleges and universities regardless of ethnicity, national origin or immigration status. (Must be born outside the US or have two parents born outside the US.)
Examples of Virginia schools with merit scholarships and limited financial aid:
James Madison University (VA) -- Tuition grants ($500 - $13,000) to international applicants who demonstrate financial need and academic excellence. The awards are granted each year ranging from $500 - $13,000. No separate scholarship application required. Priority to those who apply by February 15th.
University of Richmond (VA) --
International students may apply for merit scholarships and will be considered along with US citizens:
Washington and Lee University (VA)
- The Richmond Scholars Program funds multiple merit based scholarships that are available to 50 domestic and international first year admission applicants. Deadline: The selections are made based on the student's application and other standard submissions which must be postmarked December 15.
- Presidential Scholarships for $15,000 are available to all admission applicants. No special application required.
-- International students may apply for merit scholarships and will be considered along with US citizens. To be considered for the following merit scholarships, the student must submit a Johnson Scholarship application and a complete application for admission by Dec. 1.
- Johnson Scholarship: This scholarship includes full tuition, room and board for four years. Approximately 10% (44 students) of each entering class receive an award.
- Heinz Award: This award is made to 4 students and includes full tuition, room and board and other academic expenses. This award also includes 8-week summer internships at Heinz Corporation in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania after the freshman, sophomore, and junior years. Student must maintain 3.0. The scholarship is renewable for four years.
- The Albermarle Corporation Scholarship: This award is for full tuition for students interested in chemistry or chemical engineering. The award is renewable for four years as long as the student maintains a 3.0. This scholarship includes a paid summer internship with The Albermarle Corporation after the sophomore year.
Scholarships available for international students at a sampling of other colleges:
Bucknell (PA) -- Limited scholarships for international students and competitive to receive. Cost of attending exceeds scholarship so students must demonstrate ability to contribute at least $17,000 per year.
Carleton College (MN) -- International Students are eligible for up to 6 full and 6 partial scholarships including tuition and room and board.
University of Chicago (IL) -- International students are considered for merit scholarships along with all applicants: 30 College Honor scholarships (full tuition) and 100 University Scholarship (one-third tuition). Admissions are “need aware” and competitive for students who need financial aid, but if you are accepted, Chicago will meet your demonstrated need.
Cornell (NY) -- Limited funding for international undergraduates (10 – 15 scholarships in each class). Citizens and landed immigrants of Canada, citizens of Mexico, and U.S. Permanent Residents DO qualify to apply for financial aid at Cornell.
Davidson (NC) -- Financial assistance for a limited number of international students who are not permanent residents. These funds vary in amount and are based on a combination of financial need and merit.
Duke (NC) -- Foreign National Students are eligible for merit scholarships. Need Blind admissions and financial aid for permanent residents. Limited funding for international students (20 – 25 students) based on demonstrated need.
Johns Hopkins (MD) -- Johns Hopkins International Scholarships are based on financial need and merit.
10% of international students received need based assistance (average $25,000). Because funds are limited, Johns Hopkins University takes need for financial aid into consideration when making the Admissions decision.
Lafayette (PA) -- Marquis Scholars: merit scholarships for permanent residents ($16,000/year for four years).
International financial aid deadline: December 15.
Michigan State (MI) -- Honors Scholar National Scholarship -- For students who join the Honors College as incoming freshmen. Citizens of Canada or Mexico. $8000/year.
Northwestern (IL) -- Limited need based aid available to international students.
Oberlin (OH) -- More than 80% of international students receive financial aid. Edwin Reischauer Scholarship (full tuition): Japanese Nationals accepted into arts and sciences school are eligible.
University of Pennsylvania (PA) -- Needs blind admission for permanent residents, Canadians and Mexicans. Limited financial assistance for other international students and offer of admission is directly linked to their ability to meet expenses.
Rice University (TX) -- Merit Scholarships for foreign nationals, including the Allen International Scholarship (full tuition) and Edgar Odell Lovett Scholarship (half tuition). All applicants are automatically considered for merit scholarships.
Southern Methodist University (TX) -- Several merit scholarships are available to international students, including President's (full tuition), Dean's (half tuition), SMU and University, Mustang Awards, J. Lindsay Embrey Academic Scholarships (for engineering students). Deadline January 15 for priority consideration.
Swarthmore (PA) --
Financial aid (needs based) to about 20 foreign national students a year, ranging from $1,000 to $50,000.