Finding Funding

Some study abroad programs can be covered by financial aid. If you are a student with a fellowship or scholarship your program may cover part or all of the cost of studying abroad. Below are other resources you should investigate. Many students pay for study abroad with a combination of different types of financial aid, scholarship and fellowship money. The earlier you begin planning, the more opportunities for funding you will find. Keep in mind that many of the application deadlines for these programs are up to a year in advance.

Funding Resources in CUNY

As part of CUNY’s commitment to “[widen] the pipeline of language training, study abroad, and cross-cultural learning and collaboration for all students” (The Connected University, CUNY Master Plan 2016-2020), the Chancellor’s Global Scholarship provides partial funding on a competitive basis to CUNY students planning a study abroad experience. The Hearst Opportunities Fund will offer financial support to CUNY BA students to help defray the expenses for a variety of academic undertakings, including study abroad. Some CUNY colleges offer scholarships for international projects, internships and study programs.  You are only eligible to apply for these awards at your home campus.  Brooklyn College, for example, offers the Tow Undergraduate Stipend and Furman Fellows Program as well as the Student Affairs Study Abroad Scholarship (SASA). Baruch offers students based there the C.V. Starr Fellowship for Study Abroad.  Queens College also offers an internal study abroad scholarship.  John Jay offers the John Jay Study-Abroad Scholarship and JJC Student Travel Program. Check with the study abroad and scholarships offices at your home college to find out what funding opportunities are available on your campus.

National Awards

The Gilman Scholarship Program broadens the student population that studies and interns abroad by supporting undergraduates who might not otherwise participate due to financial constraints.  The program aims to encourage students to study and intern in a diverse array of countries and world regions. The program also encourages students to study languages, especially critical need languages (those deemed important to national security). By supporting undergraduate students who have high financial need, the program has been successful in supporting students who have been historically underrepresented in education abroad, including but not limited to first-generation college students, students in STEM fields, ethnic minority students, students with disabilities, students attending HBCUs or other minority-serving institutions, students attending community colleges, and students coming from U.S. states with less study abroad participation. Award amounts will vary depending on the length of study and student need. Applicants who are studying a critical need language while abroad in a country in which the language is predominantly spoken can apply for a supplemental award of up to $3,000, for a combined total of $8,000Under Executive Order 13750, Gilman scholars are also eligible for 12 months of noncompetitive eligibility (NCE) hiring status within the federal government, with the possibility of extensions if certain criteria are met. NCE allows U.S. federal government agencies to hire eligible exchange program alumni outside of the formal competitive job announcement process and to compete for certain federal employment jobs that are only open to federal employees. CUNY Baccalaureate Students should apply through their home college (except in rare cases where a campus doesn’t have an approver in place, in which case students can apply through CUNY Baccalaureate but only after careful consultation and advanced planning.

The Boren Awards for International Study provides a unique funding opportunity for U.S. undergraduate and graduate students to study world regions critical to U.S. interests (including Africa, Asia, Central & Eastern Europe, Eurasia, Latin America & the Caribbean, and the Middle East). The Boren Awards program was designed to provide American students with the resources and encouragement they need to acquire skills and experiences in areas of the world critical to the future security of the United States, in exchange for a commitment to seek work in the federal government. Awards are up to $20,000 for undergraduates and $30,000 for graduate students depending on cost and length of program.

Critical Language Scholarship Program, a United States Department of State, Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs, provides scholarships for U.S. citizen undergraduate, master’s and Ph.D. students to participate in beginning, intermediate, and advanced level intensive summer language programs at American Overseas Research Centers.

Diversity Abroad is the leading global education organization which targets non-traditional students for international education opportunities. Click here for their link to scholarship and financial aid resources.

The Foundation for Global Scholars awards over 200 scholarships each year to US citizens studying abroad. Awarded scholarships are between $1,000 and $2,500. Award amounts vary. Most awards are $1,000.

The Fund for Education Abroad 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.  They offer general awards as well as ones targeted to specific groups: students majoring in Art, Film, Foreign Language, Photography, and Tourism & Travel, Pell Grant recipients, veterans, STEM and ethnically diverse students.

The Global Studies Grant for Student Travel and Study Abroad is designed to support foreign language training and other academic studies abroad, this grant provides supplemental funds for American students who already are studying abroad under the auspices of an official study abroad program conducted by an accredited academic institution. GSF seeks to support a formative experience abroad for the recipient, who also must share this experience with others upon his or her return – ideally, with multiple audiences and varied media. They are particularly interested in funding the study of strategically important countries and languages (as defined by the US Departments of State and Defense).

Country/Region Specific Awards

The American-Scandinavian Foundation (ASF) offers fellowships (up to $23,000) and grants (up to $5,000) to individuals to pursue research, study or creative arts projects in one or more Scandinavian country for up to one year. The number of awards varies each year according to total funds available. Awards are made in all fields.

The Bridging Project offers scholarships to American undergraduate students participating in study abroad programs in Japan.

DAAD (Deutscher Akademischer Austauch Dienst, or German Academic Exchange Service) offers scholarships for undergraduates, graduate students, researchers, and faculty members to study in Germany.

The Freeman-ASIA program is designed to support U.S.-based undergraduates with demonstrated financial need who are planning to study abroad in East or Southeast Asia. The program’s goal is to increase the number of U.S. citizens and permanent residents with first-hand exposure to and understanding of Asia and its peoples and cultures.

Hashi.org awards one $1000 dollar scholarship to an American student for study in Japan each year on the basis of need and overall intent for usage as expressed in the application essay. The scholarships could be used for a variety of overseas programs, including but not limited to home stays, student exchange, volunteering, work, etc.

MASA provides grants to students of Jewish descent who study in Israel.  They also provide a list of additional funding sources.

The Kosciuszko Foundation offers multiple scholarships for study in Poland including the Tomaszkiewicz-Florio Scholarships for summer study as well as full year funding for certain programs.

American Research Institute in Turkey Summer Fellowship supports and administers programs of fellowships for scholarly research and for language study in Turkey.

Chinese Government Scholarship Program In order to promote the mutual understanding, cooperation and exchanges in various fields between China and other countries, the Chinese government has set up a series of scholarship programs to sponsor international students, teachers and scholars to study and conduct research in Chinese universities.

The Fulbright UK Summer Institutes are three-to-four week programmes for US undergraduate students. Participants can explore the culture, heritage and history of the UK while experiencing higher education at a UK university.

Fund for Education Abroad offers two geographically based scholarships for study abroad: the Hiliary Echo Douglas Memorial Scholarship (Vietnam) and the Jane Gluckmann & Carol Rausch Go Global Scholarship (Mexico, Central America, South America, France, or Germany)

The Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology (MEXT or Monbukagakusho) offers scholarships each year to assist foreign students who are interested in enrolling in Japanese universities.

The Killam Fellowships Program provides an opportunity for exceptional undergraduate students from universities in the United States to spend either one semester or a full academic year as an exchange student in Canada. Students may participate in the program either as a direct exchange student (registering at their home university, paying their home fees, and attending the host university as an exchange visitor) or as a self-placed visiting student (registering at the host university and paying host tuition fees). 

Ministry of Education’s Huayu Enrichment Scholarships (HES)

Taiwan-United States Sister Relations Alliance (TUSA) Ambassador Summer Scholarship Program is an Ambassador program, a unique program especially designed for students who will be representing their state as well as the United States, acting as ambassadors to Taiwan.

Turkish Coalition of America (TCA) Study Abroad in Turkey Scholarships encourage students to choose Turkey as a study abroad destination. TCA scholarship recipients build people-to-people bridges between the U.S. and Turkey, and the program has served to engage a new generation of young Americans who have cultivated an interest in Turkey and Turkish culture, thus fulfilling TCA’s mission.

Resources for Additional Funding

The Hispanic Association of Colleges & Universities (HACU) has partnered with Global Learning Semesters to increase the number of Hispanic students engaged in study abroad. Their study abroad funding opportunities are available here.

NAFSA: Association of International Educators is a member organization promoting international education and providing professional development opportunities to the field. As such, they have a page dedicated to providing information on financial aid for study abroad.

The Institute for International Education (IIE) is a private nonprofit which, in collaboration with governments, foundations and other sponsors, creates programs of study and training for students, educators and professionals from all sectors.  IIE maintains a thorough database of study abroad funding opportunities at IIEPassport Study Abroad Funding

Post-Undergraduate Awards for International Opportunities

The Fulbright U.S. Student Program is the largest U.S. international exchange program offering opportunities for U.S. students to individually design research or teach English for one academic year in a country outside of the U.S.  Recent BA/BS graduates, Masters and Ph.D. candidates, young professionals including writers, journalists, and those in business, law, and professional fields, as well as artists and musicians are eligible. Fulbright is sponsored by the U.S. Department of State, Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs.Applicants currently enrolled at a U.S. college or university must apply either through their home college. Alternatively, non-matriculated students may apply as at-large applicants. Click here to read about how to apply through CUNY Baccalaureate.

Marshall Scholarships finance young Americans of high ability to study for a degree in the United Kingdom. Up to forty Scholars are selected each year to study at graduate level at an UK institution in any field of study. As future leaders, with a lasting understanding of British society, Marshall Scholars strengthen the enduring relationship between the British and American peoples, their governments and their institutions. Marshall Scholars are talented, independent and wide-ranging, and their time as Scholars enhances their intellectual and personal growth. Their direct engagement with Britain through its best academic programmes contributes to their ultimate personal success.

Gates Cambridge Scholarships are awarded to outstanding applicants from countries outside the UK to pursue a full-time postgraduate degree in any subject available at the University of Cambridge. The selection criteria are: outstanding intellectual ability, leadership potential, a commitment to improving the lives of others, a good fit between the applicant’s qualifications and aspirations and the postgraduate programme at Cambridge for which they are applying. While at Cambridge, Scholars pursue full range of subjects available at the University and are spread through its departments and Colleges.

Princeton in Africa matches talented and passionate college graduates with organizations working across Africa for yearlong service placements. Our program is open to graduating seniors and young alumni from any college or university accredited in the U.S. Our Fellows have helped improve education and public health, source fresh water and alternative energy, increase family incomes, and so much more.

Princeton in Asia (PiA) has been building bridges between the U.S. and Asia for over a century. The essence of PiA is to provide transformative, service-oriented experiences for bright, talented graduates and to serve the needs of Asia as determined by our host institutions and Asian partners. PiA arranges fellowships and internships with Asian host organizations that contribute to important global issues at the local level: education, public health, environmental sustainability, access to information/media, economic development and social justice.

Princeton in Latin America (PiLA) partners with NGOs and multilateral organizations and places highly qualified recent college graduates in yearlong service fellowships with nonprofit, public service, humanitarian, and government organizations with a social mission in Latin American and Caribbean. Placements emphasize the power of firsthand work experience to shape young people’s attitudes and mobilize them to effect positive social change.