Financial Aid and Scholarships

Many sources exist to help students in managing the costs of study abroad. Below is a list of some, as well as other funding ideas and resources. Please keep in mind that information is subject to change without notice, and information published by the aid sponsor will supersede the below.

Eligibility

Eligibility requirements vary according to the aid source. Some aid types may not be available for non-UA study abroad programs, for summer study or for part-time study. Students should always have a current Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) on file and consult with The University of Akron’s Office of Student Financial Aid to determine eligibility for federal, state and campus-based aid.

Even if students have never received federal or state financial aid grants or loans prior, they are strongly encouraged to consult with the OSFA and file a FAFSA. The costs of study abroad may raise students into a higher need bracket.

For scholarship eligibility requirements, students should consult the scholarship provider directly.

Budgeting and Reasonable Expenses

In determining award amounts, some aid types will factor in “reasonable expenses” of the student’s chosen program. These include tuition and related fees, housing and meals, books, supplies and transportation.

With any study abroad program, students should create a budget that includes the above, plus estimates of passport and visa fees—if necessary, insurance and personal costs, such as souvenirs and personal travel. This will help estimate the entire expected cost of the program.

Federal Pell Grant

Available almost exclusively to undergraduates and all eligible students will receive the award amount for which they qualify based on financial need. Estimated annual awards vary and these grants are prorated based on the number of enrolled credit hours.

Ohio College Opportunity Grant (OCOG)

A grant offered to students who are Ohio residents. These grants are also prorated based on full or part-time enrollment status. More information.

Supplemental Education Opportunity Grant (SEOG)

Only awarded to students who meet the strict need guidelines established by the U.S. Department of Education, and submit the FAFSA by March 1. Students must be Pell-eligible to receive this grant. Only applicable to UA-sponsored programs.

 

Federal Direct (Stafford) Subsidized Loan

Awarded based on need as determined from information on the FAFSA. The U.S. Department of Education pays interest while the borrower is in school and during any grace and deferment periods. The student must be at least a half-time student and have financial need. The annual loan limit varies based on class standing.

Perkins Loan

The Perkins Loan is another need-based loan program. Students must have filed their FAFSA by March 1 to be considered for this program.  Only applicable to UA-sponsored programs.

Nursing Student Loan

The Nursing Student Loan programs provide long-term, low-interest rate loans to undergraduate students who have been admitted into the nursing program and have filed their FAFSA by March 1.  Only applicable to UA-sponsored programs.

Federal Direct Unsubsidized Loan

Non need-based loan. Students must complete the FAFSA to be eligible for this loan program. This loan is given in lieu of, or in combination with, Direct Subsidized Loans. Terms are the same as the Stafford Subsidized Loan, except the borrower is responsible for the interest from the date of disbursement.

Federal Direct Parent Loan for Undergraduate Students (PLUS)

Non need-based loan. The applicant is the student's parent, who is responsible to begin repayment almost immediately upon disbursement. If a parent is denied for this loan, the student may be eligible for a Stafford Unsubsidized Loan. To receive the PLUS loan, no FAFSA is required; contact the OFSA for an application.

Alternative Loans

Non need-based loan. These are private loans that are generally in the name of the student; a FAFSA is not generally required for these loans. Often the student is the borrower, and may need to have a creditworthy co-borrower. Interest rates, repayment plans and deferment options vary widely among lenders. Be sure to "shop" for the option that is right for your situation since these are loans that are designed to bridge the funding gap when savings, scholarships, grants, federal loans, and other resources are not sufficient.

Students who qualify for UA merit-based scholarships may use them toward the cost of UA-sponsored study abroad programs. As always, students should consult the Office of Student Financial Aid for detailed eligibility criteria. May only be applicable to UA-sponsored programs.

Ad-Hoc Consortium Agreement

Students participating in non-UA sponsored study abroad programs must complete an Ad-Hoc Consortium Agreement in order to use aid earned through The University of Akron toward their study abroad program. This form is available from the Office of Student Financial Aid.

Ohio International Consortium 

The Ohio International Consortium (OIC) was established in 1991 in order to identify, develop, and expand beneficial international relationships that might contribute to the enhancement of Ohio’s global profile and the international expertise and activities of the state’s public four-year universities.

Donald N. Nelson Scholarship for Study Abroad

Ohio International Consortium Study Abroad Nelson Scholarship is for an Ohio resident who is a full-time, degree-seeking undergraduate student. Be at least a rising sophomore with a minimum 3.0 GPA. The selected student must return to the home campus for at least one semester during which the follow-on project will be completed. Be accepted into an accredited study abroad program that has been approved by the home school. Programs must be at least one semester in duration. Preference is given to first-time study abroad applicants studying in a non-English-speaking country and taking courses in the native language of the host country.

Application Deadlines:

Fall or Spring Semester:

February 8

PLEASE NOTE: Application deadlines are specific to The University of Akron and are set one week before OIC deadlines to allow for review and submission.

Submit applications to:

The University of Akron, Education Abroad Office, Buchtel Hall 202, Akron, OH 44325-4724 or educationabroad@uakron.edu 

Visit the OIC Scholarship website for details on eligibility and the requirements of the application.

George C. Burke Scholarship for Summer Study Abroad

Ohio International Consortium Study Abroad Burke Scholarship is for an Ohio resident who is a full-time, degree-seeking undergraduate student from an Ohio International Consortium member school. Be at least a rising sophomore with a minimum 3.0 GPA. The selected student must return to the home campus for at least one semester during which the follow-on project will be completed. Be accepted into an accredited study abroad program that has been approved by the home school. Programs must be at least four-weeks in duration. Preference is given to first-time study abroad applicants.

Application Deadlines:

Summer Semester:

February 22

PLEASE NOTE: Application deadlines are specific to The University of Akron and are set one week before OIC deadlines to allow for review and submission.

Submit applications to:

The University of Akron, Education Abroad Office, Buchtel Hall 202, Akron, OH 44325-4724 or educationabroad@uakron.edu 

Visit the OIC Scholarship website for details on eligibility and the requirements of the application.

Benjamin A Gilman International Scholarship Program

The U.S. Department of State’s Benjamin A. Gilman International Scholarship is a grant program that enables students of limited financial means to study or intern abroad, thereby gaining skills critical to our national security and economic competitiveness. A Gilman Scholarship enables American students to gain proficiency in diverse languages and cultures, skills that are critically important to their academic and career development.

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). Veterans of military service are encouraged to apply, and preference is given to veterans when other factors are equivalent. 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 recipients are chosen by a competitive selection process and must use the award to defray eligible study or intern abroad costs. These costs include program tuition, room and board, books, local transportation, insurance, international airfare, passport and visa fees.

National Security Education Program/Boren Awards for International Study

Comprised of the Boren Scholarships and the Boren Fellowships, the Boren Awards for International Study offer significant grants to undergraduate and graduate students studying in destinations that are less common and deemed critical to US interests, with preference given to certain emphasized countries. Language study is a mandatory component of a Boren-funded program, with preference given to less-commonly taught languages. Boren Scholars and Fellows are subject to a government service requirement after graduation.

For more information, contact UA's Director of Competitive Fellowships, Dr. Karl Kaltenthaler, at kck@uakron.edu

Hanban Scholarship

The Hanban Scholarship is grant awarded by the Chinese Ministry of Education to provide the opportunity to study in China for qualified students through individual Confucius Institutes and their charter partner institutions in China. Awardees from The University of Akron typically enroll in Henan University in Kaifeng, Henan Province. Interested students should consult the Confucius Institute.

Other External Scholarships

American Association of Teachers of Japanese (AATJ) Bridging Scholarships for Study Abroad in Japan

The Bridging Project offers scholarships to American undergraduate students participating in study-abroad programs in Japan. Funding from private foundations and major U.S. corporations, through donations to the nonprofit US-Japan Bridging Foundation, makes it possible to award about 100 scholarships each year to assist students with the travel and living expenses they will incur while studying abroad in Japan for a semester or an academic year. Applications are accepted twice a year for Bridging Scholarships.

BUTEX Scholarships

BUTEX brings together universities, colleges and other higher education institutions across the UK that have a shared interest in learning abroad. Their mission is to promote British education internationally, to facilitate collaboration and regular exchange of information between their members, to develop expertise and to influence the future of international education.

Each year BUTEX awards a number of scholarships to students studying abroad for either a semester or for a whole academic year.

Corinne Jeannine Schillings Foundation

The Foundation is dedicated to preserving the memory of Corinne Jeannine Schillings, who lost her life in the Baltimore Water Taxi accident on March 6, 2004. Corinne believed strongly in higher education for women and in learning about various cultures through the study of languages.

The Foundation supports undergraduate college women in the study of languages and learning about other cultures.

Deutscher Akademischer Austausch Dienst/German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD)

DAAD offers a number of scholarship and program options for undergraduate and graduate students interested in study, internships and/or research in Germany.

Diversity Abroad

DiversityAbroad.com has partnered with several organizations to offer study abroad scholarships and grants.

Freeman-ASIA (Freeman Awards for Study in Asia)

Freeman Awards for Study in Asia (Freeman-ASIA) provides scholarships for U.S. undergraduate students with demonstrated financial need to study abroad in East or Southeast Asia.

A Freeman-ASIA award provides need-based funding to assist the recipient with the cost of the study abroad program and related expenses, including airfare, basic living costs, local transportation, books, etc.

Freeman-ASIA accepts applications from U.S. citizens or permanent residents studying at the undergraduate level at a two-year or four-year college or university who demonstrate financial need to study abroad in East or Southeast Asia.

Interested students should apply to Freeman-ASIA in the academic term before their study abroad program begins. Applications must also be endorsed by both the study abroad adviser and the financial aid adviser by the specified deadline.

Fund for Education Abroad (FEA)

The Fund for Education Abroad (FEA) invests in promising students with financial need who wish to study abroad. Potential applicants who meet our eligibility requirements may participate on any international education program that meets their academic objectives. 

FEA Start The Adventure Scholarship

Two FEA/STA Travel Start the Adventure Scholarships ($2,500 each) will be awarded to applicants studying during the summer semester. In turn, two STA Travel Advisor Awards ($2,500 each) will be granted to the study abroad department of these FEA/STA Travel Start the Adventure Scholarship recipients, in order for the department to strategically fund another student participating on a study abroad program in the same academic year. These discretionary awards serve as capacity-building grants for the study abroad department to increase their reach among the student population.

General Federation of Women's Clubs of Massachusetts' International Study Abroad Scholarship

The General Federation of Women's Clubs of Massachusetts awards an International Study Abroad Scholarship of up to $600 to undergraduate or graduate students. To qualify the recipient must be a student maintaining legal residence in Massachusetts.

You must be an undergraduate or graduate student maintaining legal residence in Massachusetts.

Application

US citizens and US permanent residents are welcome to apply for scholarships and travel grants to study in New Zealand. 
The Mitchell Scholars Program offers a national competitive scholarship sponsored by the US-Ireland Alliance.

The Mitchell Scholars Program, named to honor former US Senator George Mitchell's pivotal contribution to the Northern Ireland peace process, is designed to introduce and connect generations of future American leaders to the island of Ireland, while recognizing and fostering intellectual achievement, leadership, and a commitment to community and public service. Up to twelve Mitchell Scholars between the ages of 18 and 30 are chosen annually for one year of postgraduate study in any discipline offered by institutions of higher learning in Ireland and Northern Ireland. Applicants are judged on three criteria: scholarship, leadership, and a sustained commitment to community and public service. The Mitchell Scholars Program provides tuition, accommodations, a living expenses stipend, and an international travel stipend.

Golden Key Study Abroad Scholarship 

This scholarship assists Golden Key members (undergraduate, graduate, and post-graduate) who participate in a study abroad program.

Go Overseas Scholarships

GoOverseas.com offers a variety of scholarships. Visit their webpage for details.

National Endowment for the Humanities Fellowships

Fellowships support individuals pursuing advanced research that is of value to humanities scholars, general audiences, or both. Recipients usually produce articles, monographs, books, digital materials, archaeological site reports, translations, editions, or other scholarly resources in the humanities. Projects may be at any stage of development. Fellowships support continuous full-time work for a period of six to twelve months.

Scott's Cheap Flights Study Abroad Scholarship

Many of the Scott’s Cheap Flights team members had their first international travel experience when they studied abroad. This inevitably led many of themto keep exploring the world and traveling whenever they could get the chance. They'd like to give others this same opportunity.

Tripping.com Travel Lovers' Scholarship

Traveling the world as an exchange student enhances your education through new life experiences. Tripping.com wants students all over the world to have the opportunity to study abroad and experience living in a different place. To support students' goals to study abroad this fall, we've launched the Tripping.com Travel Lovers' Scholarship. The winner will receive $1000 towards their chosen study abroad program.

Turkish Coalition of America

The Turkish Coalition of America provides up to 100 scholarships per year for students of the following backgrounds:

  • African American
  • Armenian American
  • Bosnian American
  • Filipino American
  • Hispanic American
  • Macedonian American
  • Native American

These scholarships are awarded to eligible undergraduate and graduate students who have been accepted to a language program or university study abroad program in Turkey, the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus (TRNC), or Bosnia and Herzegovina (BiH).

Scholarships for Language Study

Critical Language Scholarship Program

A program of the U.S. Department of State, Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs, the Critical Language Scholarship (CLS) Program offers intensive summer language institutes in thirteen critical foreign languages.

The Blakemore Foundation for Asian Language Study

Since 1990, the Blakemore Foundation, with the support of The Freeman Foundation, has awarded over $17 million in grants to college graduates and young professionals for an academic year abroad in full-time intensive language study. The fellowships cover tuition and a stipend for related educational expenses, basic living costs and transportation.

GoAbroad.Com Scholarship Search Engine

Before the likes of Google and Expedia, an international program directory like GoAbroad only existed in print. With the birth of digital media, their founders realized this information could have a greater impact if it was made more accessible by bringing it online. Acting on this realization, they created GoAbroad.com, the original online resource for meaningful travel.

In addition to travel resources and program reviews, GoAbroad.com offers a customizable scholarship search engine.

International Financial Aid and College Scholarship Search

IEFA is the premier resource for financial aid, college scholarship and grant information for US and international students wishing to study abroad. At this site, you will find a comprehensive college scholarship search and grant listings, plus international student loan programs and other information to promote study abroad.