Study-abroad Scholarships For Indian Students

An international scholarship can help your child realise his dream of studying in a top foreign university. But, does he know how to get a scholarship to study abroad? We tell you how.

By V Saravana Kumar  • 20 min read

Study-abroad Scholarships For Indian Students

Getting a degree from a top foreign university is the dream of many Indian students. The knowledge and experience that students acquire by studying in top foreign universities equips them to compete globally. Thus, having a foreign degree opens the doors to better career prospects and a bright future.

But, a foreign degree comes at a steep price. According to a report published in the Economic Times (20 August 2018), the average university fees in private colleges in USA is between Rs 25 and 30 lakhs per year. Add to this the annual cost of living and this amount could shoot up by a few lakhs.

Most Indian students find it difficult to afford such high tuition fees. And, this is where international scholarships lend a helping hand. A full scholarship to study abroad takes care of the tuition fees, which is a major portion of the total expense, thus proving to be a valuable financial aid option.

Types of scholarships for Indian students

If your child is interested in studying in a foreign university, there are many scholarships for Indian students he can apply for. But, international scholarships are of different types. So, before your child applies for one, let's understand which one would best suit his needs.

  • Merit-based scholarship: This scholarship is offered by foreign universities to those with good academic record. Other factors such as achievements in extra-curricular activities and community service are also considered.
  • Scholarship based on student’s background: This kind of scholarship is offered to students from diverse backgrounds. Its purpose is to establish equality among different sections of the society. Students are chosen based on factors such as gender, race, religion, family and medical history.
  • Subject-based scholarship: This study-abroad scholarship is subject-specific and is offered to students based on their chosen subject or field of study. To avail this scholarship, the student has to enrol in a subject-specific course, for example, mathematics or statistics or law.
  • Major-specific scholarship: Also called field-specific scholarship, this scholarship is offered by foreign universities to students who choose a particular field of study such as engineering, art or music.
  • Country-specific scholarship: This international scholarship is awarded to students from developing countries in different parts of the world like Asia or Africa. It is offered by certain countries as a promotional incentive to study in their country.

Top study-abroad scholarships

Let’s now take a look at some of the most popular scholarships to study abroad for Indian students:

Scholarships for MBBS students

MBBS scholarships in Australia and New Zealand

  • Australasian Faculty of Public Health Medicine (AFPHM) John Snow Scholarship – The Royal Australasian College of Physicians offers this scholarship to students enrolled in accredited medical schools and universities in Australia and New Zealand.
  • University of Auckland John Hamel MacGregor Award in Medical Science – This study-abroad scholarship is for international and domestic students studying in the University of Auckland, New Zealand. The students should be enrolled in either MBBS (also called MBChB in some countries) or pursuing a postgraduate research degree.
  • University of Wollongong Scholarships – Both domestic and international students can avail this scholarship. It is offered for courses in science, medicine and health at the University of Wollongong in Australia.

MBBS scholarship in the USA

  • UCLA David Geffen Medical Scholarships – This endowment is granted to students enrolling in the David Geffen School of Medicine at the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA). This scholarship covers 100% of the expenses for the four-year course, including tuition fees, accommodation charges and other expenses.

MBA Scholarships

MBA scholarships in the UK

  • London Business School India Scholarship: Awarded by the London Business School, Indian students who wish to pursue MBA in the School can opt for it.
  • Rhodes Scholarship: This is the oldest (first awarded in 1902) and one of the most prestigious foreign scholarships. It is for students willing to pursue MBA (and other permitted degree combinations) in the University of Oxford. The other scholarships to study MBA in Oxford University include, Oxford and Cambridge Society of India Scholarship, Felix Scholarship, Chevening Scholarship, Clarendon Scholarship, Oxford-Weidenfeld and Hoffmann Scholarship and Leadership Programme, The Skoll Scholarship, and Said Business School Foundation Scholarship. Most of these scholarships not only pay for university fees but also provide a living stipend.
  • University of Liverpool Management School Scholarship: The university offers this scholarship to students enrolled in the MBA progamme. It covers the tuition fees.
  • University of Cambridge Scholarships: These include Graduate Research Scholarship, Gates Cambridge Scholarship, Chevening/Cambridge Scholarship, Cambridge Trust Scholarship, Peter Kishor Chand Anand Cambridge Scholarship, Santander Cambridge Scholarship, and Snowdon Cambridge Scholarship (for students with physical or sensory disability).
  • Brilliant Minds MBA Scholarship: This is offered to students who are willing to pursue MBA in the Imperial College Business School, London.

MBA scholarships in the USA

  • Boustany MBA Harvard Scholarship: Funded by the Boustany Foundation, this scholarship is for students who wish to pursue MBA in the Harvard University.
  • The Robert S. Kaplan (MBA 1983) Life Sciences Fellowship: Robert S. Kaplan is credited with establishing this scholarship. Under this programme, an amount of $20,000 each is awarded to ten students pursuing MBA in Harvard Business School.
  • University of Pennsylvania Scholarships: These include Joseph Wharton Fellowship, Emerging Economy Fellowships and Social Impact Fellowships. All these international scholarships are offered to students studying MBA in the Wharton School of Business, University of Pennsylvania.
  • Stanford Reliance Dhirubhai Fellowship: The scholarship is for students who wish to pursue an MBA at Stanford University. It is jointly offered by the University and Reliance Industries Limited.
  • Columbia Business School MBA Scholarships: These include Forté Foundation Scholarship (for women) and Toigo Fellowship (for students from under-represented groups). The scholarships are granted to those enrolled in MBA in participating/leading business schools.
  • Chicago Booth Scholarships: These include A.H. Tobaccowala Fellowship and Ramakrishnan Family Scholarship. Both of them are for students willing to pursue MBA in the University of Chicago Booth School of Business.
  • Harry and Nisha Arora Scholarship: Established in 2015, this is a merit-based foreign scholarship. It is granted to students who wish to do MBA from Yale University.

MBA scholarships in Canada

  • Ontario Graduate Scholarship (OGS): This is offered to meritorious students studying MBA (and other disciplines) in publicly-assisted universities in Ontario, Canada. It covers top universities such as Carleton University, York University, University of Windsor and University of Waterloo.
  • Joseph L Rotman Scholarship: Students who pursue MBA at the Rotman School of Management, University of Toronto, are eligible for this international scholarship.
  • Sauder School of Business Entrance Scholarships: These are for students who wish to do MBA at the Sauder School of Business, University of British Columbia.
  • Alberta MBA Scholarships: Students who wish to pursue MBA at the Alberta School of Business, University of Alberta, are eligible to apply for these scholarships.

MBA scholarships in Australia

  • Australian National University (ANU) College of Business & Economics International Graduate Scholarship: This scholarship is offered to international students who wish to pursue MBA at the ANU College of Business & Economics.
  • Curtin University Scholarships: These include the merit-based MBA (Global) Scholarship and the need-based Curtin Humanitarian Fund for students facing financial difficulties.
  • University of Western Australia (UWA) Scholarships: These include BHP Billiton MBA Full Time Scholarship and UWA Business School MBA Full Time Dean’s Scholarship for students of UWA.
  • Monash Business School International Pathway Scholarship: This scholarship is offered to international students who wish to pursue MBA at the Monash University.

MBA scholarship in Singapore

  • Nanyang Technological University Scholarships: The Nanyang Early Submission Scholarship and Nanyang Women in Business Scholarship are for MBA students of Nanyang Technological University (NTU).
  • INSEAD Singapore Scholarships: These include INSEAD Antonio Borges Endowed Scholarship and INSEAD Diversity Scholarships for students doing MBA at INSEAD, Singapore.

MBA scholarships in France

  • HEC Paris MBA Scholarship For Excellence: This is a merit-based scholarship for those who wish to pursue the MBA programme at HEC Paris. Applying for the Scholarship For Excellence doesn't exclude students from applying for other scholarships.
  • Excellence Scholarships – Emlyon Business School: The School awards this scholarship to students taking up MBA in the institution. A host of other international scholarships are also offered by the School.

Scholarships for Engineering students

Engineering scholarships in Canada

  • Women in Technology Scholarship: This scholarship is offered to women students who wish to pursue Bachelor of Computer Science or Bachelor of Applied Computer Science in Dalhousie University.
  • Jordie and Robert Jordan Bursary: Students who enrol in engineering in the Schulich School of Engineering, University of Calgary, can apply for this grant.

Engineering scholarships in the UK

  • University of Greenwich International Scholarship: Students who wish to pursue engineering and allied courses in the University of Greenwich can apply for this scholarship. It is offered as a discount on the first year's tuition fees.

Engineering scholarships in Singapore

  • Science & Technology Undergraduate Scholarship: Students from Asian countries who study engineering and allied courses in the National University of Singapore are eligible for this international scholarship. It is a merit-based foreign university scholarship that covers tuition fees and compulsory fees, annual living allowance, accommodation allowance and other expenses.

Engineering scholarships in Australia

  • Dr Abdul Kalam International Undergraduate Scholarship: This is open to international students who wish to pursue engineering and allied courses in the University of Sydney. A score of 75% or more in undergraduate exams is a must to apply for this foreign university scholarship.
  • La Trobe Excellence Scholarship: This is awarded to students who enrol in engineering and allied courses in La Trobe University.
  • The University of Adelaide International Scholarship: This is for international students who take up engineering and allied courses in the University of Adelaide.
  • International Merit Scholarship: Covering 25% of every semester's tuition fees, this scholarship is offered to students who get admission in engineering and allied courses in Queensland University of Technology.

Scholarship to study abroad for Indian students

  • Inlaks Shivdasani Foundation Scholarship: Students who wish to enrol in post-graduate courses in North America or Europe can apply for this study-abroad scholarship. It covers all the subjects except a few such as music and film animation, computer science, public health, medicine, business studies, engineering and fashion design.
  • Fulbright-Nehru Fellowship: Those interested in pursuing either a master’s degree or research programme in select US colleges can opt for this international scholarship. The scholarship is offered for studying subjects like environmental science, international legal studies, arts and culture management, public health, gender studies, urban and regional planning, and public administration.
  • Tata Scholarship: This study abroad scholarship for Indian students supports 20 children who wish to study undergraduate courses at Cornell University, USA. The scholarship covers courses such as architecture and planning, applied economics, agriculture and physical and social sciences.
  • Commonwealth Scholarship and Fellowship: This endowment is offered to students of postgraduate and PhD programmes in the UK. The scholarship is given to students studying in the fields of agriculture, engineering and technology, sciences (pure and applied), and humanities and social sciences.
  • Vice Chancellor’s International Scholarships: Available for undergraduate, postgraduate and integrated master programmes at Newcastle University, UK, this international scholarship covers all the courses in the university.
  • Chevening Scholarship: This is the global scholarship programme offered by the Government of UK. It can be availed by students who opt for a one-year master’s programme in any university in the UK.
  • Erasmus Mundus Scholarship: Funded by the European Union, this scholarship is offered to students doing postgraduate programmes in European Universities. It covers about 116 master’s courses and 29 doctoral courses in agriculture, veterinary sciences, health and welfare, engineering, manufacturing, mathematics and computing, business and law, social sciences, and arts.
  • UBC International Leader of Tomorrow Award: Sponsored by the University of British Columbia, this grant is for students who want to pursue undergraduate courses. The amount awarded is proportional to the financial need of the student.
  • Global Study Awards: This study-abroad scholarship for Indian students is offered by the British Council. It can be availed by students for studying the course of their choice in about 240 countries, including the USA, Canada, Australia, the UK, Singapore, New Zealand and Germany.
  • The Oxford and Cambridge Society of India Scholarships: These can be availed for undergraduate, second undergraduate, graduate study and research programme scholars at either the University of Cambridge or the University of Oxford. The scholarship can be used to study any course/field of study available in the two Universities.
  • Heinrich Böll Scholarships: Instituted by the Heinrich Böll Foundation, the scholarships are awarded to international students studying in universities in Germany. Students studying for bachelor's certificate, bachelor's degree, bachelor's diploma, master's certificate, master's diploma and PhD in all subjects can apply for the scholarship.
  • Presidential Scholarship: This is offered to students who wish to pursue courses in arts and science in Lawrence Technological University, USA.
  • Trustee Scholarships – Boston University: This scholarship covers the full tuition fees of courses in computer science, engineering, hospitality administration, business administration and biology in the Lawrence Boston University, USA.

Indian Government scholarships for studying abroad

Through the Ministry of Human Resource Development the Department of Higher Education allows students to apply for scholarships/fellowships which are offered by foreign countries. These are offered under cultural/educational exchange programmes, and most of them are for research, master’s and doctoral programmes. Here’s a look at some of the most popular ones:

  • United Kingdom (Commonwealth Scholarship): Funding is offered for one-year master’s course and PhD. It is available to international students engaged in pursuing courses in engineering and technology, pure and applied sciences, agriculture and allied fields, and humanities and social sciences.
  • New Zealand (Commonwealth Scholarship): Students enrolled in a master’s course or PhD in the field of agriculture development and renewable energy can apply for this scholarship.
  • China: Scholarships are offered for undergraduate, master’s, doctoral, general scholar and senior scholar programmes. The fields of study include pure and applied sciences, language and literature, and humanities and social sciences.
  • Israel: Students are offered scholarship for research/specialisation for a period of 8 months. The field of study includes agriculture, economics, biology, chemistry, biotechnology, mass communication, business management and environment studies.
  • South Korea: The South Korean government provides scholarship to Indian students for master’s and doctoral programmes. The subjects of study include biotechnology and electronic engineering.
  • Japan: Scholarship is offered for research, master’s and PhD studies. The subjects of study include management studies, mathematical science, biology and biotechnology, agriculture and fishery, environmental science, pharmaceutical science, electronics and communications engineering, aerospace engineering, robotics and information technology.

With the expenses for education going up by the day, obtaining a scholarship lends a supporting hand in realising the dream of studying abroad. Nowadays, almost all the top universities in the world offer scholarships for various courses. All it takes is a bit of research to find out and apply for the right international scholarship.

About the author:

Written by V Saravana Kumar on 21 August 2019

The author is a writer, translator, editor, artist, graphic designer and a start-up enthusiast. He is also learning the art of parenting through his two teenaged children.

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