The cost of attendance for an international student at Stanford University is around 90,000 USD per academic year, definitely a big financial commitment. This is the reason why 90% international students planning to pursue a UG or PG level program at Stanford seek some financial assistance in the form of Stanford University scholarships, grants, work-study, etc.
Presently, Stanford University scholarships for international students are limited to need-based aid, awarded to less than 25% international applicants. Compared to undergraduate students, graduate students have other means of financial support, in the form of fellowships, assistantships, and program-specific grants. In 2019,Stanford University distributed 335 million USD for the same, irrespective of student’s nationality.
Also, graduate students are eligible for several external scholarships to Stanford University, for which they can apply for the confirmation of admission. However, for internal Stanford University scholarships, international students must express their interest during the time of admission itself.
Like any other university in the USA, financial aid at Stanford is available in the form of:
Of these, incoming international students are only eligible for university scholarships and external scholarships. Talking about Stanford University scholarships, students are awarded a limited number of scholarships based on their financial need.
As per calculations, international students need a significantly larger amount to cover their cost of study at Stanford, around 35% higher than domestic students (in case of UG programs). Due to this, less than 40% of international students with financial requirements were admitted to different undergraduate and graduate programs.
Undergraduate Scholarships: In addition to need-based scholarships, the university supports undergraduate students through 15000 endowment scholarship funds. While international students were not catered under these funds earlier, the situation has improved now. Around 85 of Stanford endowment scholarships are designed to support international students.
Graduate Scholarships: International students beginning graduate programs at Stanford University are eligible for various program-specific scholarships such as Stanford Dhirubhai Ambani Scholarship, AMA Medical Scholarship, Knight Hennessy Scholarship, etc. In total there are 50 such scholarships available at Stanford University.
Apart from internal need-based scholarships to Stanford University, the institution incorporated other means to remain accessible to new and continuing students. In 2019, Stanford significantly increase its minimum salary for graduate student assistantships and even removed the home equity component from the UG financial aid calculation.
Due to the limited number of scholarships and funds, it is mandatory for international students to express their scholarship requirement in the admission application itself. Furthermore, students must obtain either an Individual Taxpayer Identification Number (ITIN) or a Social Security Number (SSN).
The admission application timeline, for Stanford undergraduate programs, varies for regular, transfer, and restrictive international students. Details of the same are tabulated below:
|Admission Type||Admission Application Date||Award Notification Date|
|Restrictive Early Application||November 15||December 15|
|Regular Application||February 15||April 1|
|Transfer Application||March 15||May 15|
For graduate scholarships too, the students must submit their complete scholarship application at the time of admission itself.
The university acknowledges that it rejects around 20% of international applicants because of financial issues. Knowing this, several meritorious and high achieving students, needing financial aid, hesitate in applying for admission to a UG or PG program at Stanford University.
To assist these international students the university accepts various external scholarship programs. These scholarships are separate from Stanford University scholarships and are awarded on the basis of academic and extracurricular achievements.
Some of the external scholarships at Stanford University are:
|Scholarship Name||Level of Study||Scholarship Benefits||Scholarship Eligibility|
|JN Tata Endowment Scholarship||Masters program||INR 1,00,000- INR 10,00,000||Below 40 years; at least 60% in UG; Indian Student|
|Aga Khan Foundation Scholarship||Masters program||Full program fees; 50% award & 50% loan||Below 30 years of age; Belong to AKF eligible country; Enrolling in AKF relevant field|
|Fulbright Scholarship||Masters and research program||Varies||International student; enrolled in an eligible academic field|
|OPEC Fund for International Development Scholarship||Bachelor and masters program||Full academic fees and partial living expenses||Belong to a developing country like India; enrolling in a relevant field of development|
|KC Mahindra Trust Scholarship||Masters program||Varies; interest-free loan scholarship||Indian student; above 65% in UG|
Each of these external scholarships has its own application process and deadlines, so applicants are advised to explore each option properly. Furthermore, recipients of the external scholarships will not be considered for Stanford University scholarships and funds.
Stanford University is known to enroll most sought after students from different parts of the world. To increase the presence of international students in its UG and PG programs, the institution is constantly trying to improve its funding opportunities for overseas students, be it in the form of Stanford University scholarships, fellowships, or assistantships. It hopes that within the next five years, it will be able to offer these students a fair opportunity to study at Stanford.