If you’re going to follow your dreams abroad, you’re going to need them dolla dolla bills, y’all. There are plenty of ways to make traveling more affordable (strict budgets, cooking at home/the hostel, couchsurfing, etc.), but it’s undeniable: traveling costs money.
Luckily, there are a lot of scholarship options for students and travelers looking to have a meaningful experience abroad, without breaking the bank! Here are seven travel abroad scholarships that can keep your savings right where it should be (in the bank!):
Kick-ass travel abroad scholarships to fund your next adventure
One of the most competitive travel abroad scholarships out there, the Benjamin A. Gilman International Scholarship was created with the goal to diversify the types of students that were studying abroad. In other words, the Gilman Scholarship Program is open to U.S. students who are already receiving the Federal Pell Grant and supports underrepresented students that might not otherwise study abroad. Students of diverse ethnic backgrounds, with significant financial aid needs, with disabilities, or students studying subjects not usually pursued abroad (a.k.a. STEM subjects) all qualify to apply for awards are up to $5,000!
Deadlines to keep an eye out for:
- Spring 2018 is October 3, 2017
- Summer 2018 is March 7, 2018
- Fall 2018 is March 7, 2018
Have you always wanted to teach English in Peru? Or study the effects of climate change in Iceland? The Fulbright Program includes a number of different grants and funding opportunities, but they all have one thing in common: creating a bridge of cultural exchange.
You can apply for an English Teaching Assistantship, in which you can teach English to children or adult-learners in local schools abroad, or for a Study/Research grant, in which you can pursue the study of a specific subject relevant to the country or culture you are living in. There are also a number of Fulbright Programs that exchange U.S. students with students of another country, with each doing research in the other’s country.
Application deadlines, requirements, and funding vary, so be sure to do your research. Participating in a Fulbright Program is far more than just free money – it’s a prestigious program that will stand out on your resume for future education or employment!
For those looking to give back during their time abroad, money can be an issue. After all, the last thing anyone wants is to have to worry about how they’ll afford to volunteer in another country! Good news— organizations such as International Volunteer HQ, one of the largest volunteer organizations in the world, offers a number of scholarships for first-time volunteers (and teachers!) to ease the costs of volunteering abroad.
This scholarship includes the cost of the entire IVHQ volunteer program, a TEFL course, a $1,000 flight voucher, and travel insurance. Deadline to apply is June 25, 2017.
Interested in issues of U.S. national security? The Boren Awards Scholarship provides funding for students to travel or volunteer abroad if they are studying languages and subjects relevant to U.S. national interests. This includes critical languages, such as Arabic, Chinese, and Swahili, or the study of cultures and governments in critical regions, such as the Middle East, Latin America, and Asia. The Boren awards are extremely competitive, so be sure to do your research and bring your A-game to the scholarship application! Awards are usually $8,000.
Deadlines to keep an eye out for:
- January 30, 2018 for the Boren Fellowship
- February 8, 2018 for the Boren Scholarship.
Each year, AIFS Study Abroad provides a record number of $800,000 in travel abroad scholarships and grants to students that participate in AIFS programs. Along with an incredible summer or semester experience abroad, you can also apply for diversity scholarships, financial need-based scholarships, and a series of grants. As one of the largest study abroad program providers in the world, AIFS is an incredible resource for students looking to study abroad anywhere in the world, and without going into debt!
Like many honor societies, the Golden Key Honour Society offers a number of scholarships and grants to its members. The Golden Key is especially impressive, as each year, they provide $1,000,000 in scholarships to undergraduate and graduate students, including those looking to study abroad!
These travel abroad scholarships are specifically for students who have shown a lot of initiative in their academics and on-campus leadership roles. As with many honor societies, you must be a member to apply, and application deadlines vary depending on the scholarship.
The American Association of University Women Fellows and Grants has as longstanding history of empowering women to achieve their full potential (and then some). Of course, traveling is part of that recipe, as it can be a powerful and transformative experience. Learn more about their 200+ annual fellowships and grants by following the link above.
Take advantage of travel abroad scholarships
There are literally thousands upon thousands of study abroad scholarships out there, just waiting for you to apply for them. The next step: filling out those applications! Start prepping that personal essay, get your transcripts printed, and contact your references – you’ll have a scholarship for your travel abroad experience in no time!