Scholarships For International Students

Written by Tara Peris
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A challenge for almost every international student in the U.S. is to find financial aid for college. The steadily rising costs of higher education and the strong performance of the dollar in most other countries means that it can be very difficult to secure adequate funding. Although you may have the resources to pursue college in the mother country, when rupees, pesos, or yuan are converted to dollars, they often fall far short of what is needed.

Despite its flaws and frailties, the American higher education system attracts thousands of foreign students each year. From those who seek to establish new roots in America to those who hope to take new skills back to their homelands, the paths to U.S. schooling are many. This is especially true at the graduate level, where the sheer size of the country allows for a remarkable breadth of training opportunities.

Brave New World

International students face a number of challenges as they integrate into the American school system. First, they must bridge cultural gaps and find ways to assimilate. Second, they must negotiate new educational approaches and different teaching formats than those to which they may be accustomed. Third, and perhaps most challenging, they must find a way to pay for schooling. This is a tall order for American families, but it is especially tough for foreign families. Unless you are royalty or originate from a highly westernized society in which your own currency performs well against the dollar, you can expect a challenging uphill battle.

Of course, it can be equally tough for American students abroad. As the euro continues to compete well against the dollar, studying abroad in most European countries becomes increasingly expensive. At the same time, it can be an invaluable experience, and it is worth pursuing the financial aid to make it happen. It makes sense to check out the International Education Financial Aid Program and the Grant Opportunities for Academic Liaison with Industry (GOAL) Program. These are good resources for learning more about state and federal funding options.

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