Financial Resources

Financial Resources

The following is a list of financial and scholarship resources for international students.

A word of caution: If a scholarship has an application fee, don’t apply. If you have to pay money to get money, it is probably a scam.


  • Patrick and Eileen Smyth Endowed Scholarship - An award of $7,500 for international students intending to attend Cal Poly who are Irish Nationals or for Cal Poly students who study abroad in Ireland.
  • Visit the Cal Poly Financial Aid Office for information about awards and loans, application process, deadlines and other important tips. The Financial Aid Office’s Scholarship webpage also has important information regarding scholarship opportunities.

    Cal Poly Financial Aid
  • The Scholarship Bulletin Board provides information on outside scholarship opportunities for Cal Poly students.

  • Cal Poly Graduate Education offers Non-Resident Tuition Waivers for graduate students. Requests for waivers should made by the academic department or the student’s prospective advisor (with the endorsement of the graduate coordinator). See the Graduate Financial Resources page (under “Financial Resources” on the right-hand navigation menu) for more financial aid opportunities.

  • Cal Poly Cares Grant Program - Cal Poly Student Affairs offers grants for students in need of support for housing, meals, books, clothing, personal care, and emergencies.
  • Contact your Department - Find out if there are scholarships or assistantships offered by your academic department.
  • Contact Clubs - Find out if clubs or organizations related to your field of study offer aid.
  • Cal Poly Food Pantry - Free nutritious food on campus with no questions asked.
  • Cal Poly Hunger Program - Meal vouchers
  • Abroad Planet Scholarship Resource - Online community of international students studying in the United States
  • Educational Foundation International Fellowships - International Fellowships are awarded for full-time study or research to women who are not U.S. citizens or permanent residents. Both graduate and postgraduate study at accredited institutions are supported.

    AAUW
  • Gates Millennium Scholarships - Tuition for low-income minority students seeking undergraduate and graduate degrees.

    Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation
  • Free online financial aid source for scholarships, grants, and loans for all college-bound students, including permanent residents and international students wishing to study in the United States.

    College Board
  • The Denmark-America Foundation & the Fulbright Commission offer grants, traineeships, and advising for Danes and Americans.

    • Fiolstræde 24, 3.sal, 1171 Copenhagen K, Denmark

    The Denmark-American Foundation
  • FastWeb - Free online scholarship search service
  • Fulbright - Foreign students apply for Fulbright Fellowships through the binational Fulbright Commission or U.S. Embassies in their home countries.
  • IIE, an independent non-profit organization founded in 1919, is a world leader in the exchange of people and ideas. IIE administers over 200 programs serving more than 20,000 individuals each year.

    Institute of International Education
  • International Education Financial Aid - Free online scholarship search service designed for international students.
  • International Scholarships - Free online scholarship database for international students wishing to study worldwide.
  • List of financial aid available to students from North and South America. LASPAU itself does not offer grants, scholarships, fellowships, or loans. Those interested in applying for a LASPAU-administered program should apply directly to the sponsoring agencies and should contact those agencies to request information on criteria for eligibility and other application-related information. Below is a list of grant programs administered by LASPAU, organized by country.

    LASPAU
  • Leo S. Rowe Pan American Fund - Interest-free loans up to $15,000 for students from Latin America and the Caribbean OAS Member countries.
  • Mobility International USA - Free online scholarship resource for non-U.S. citizens with disabilities.
  • Scholarships are offered to F-1 international students who are enrolled fulltime at an MPOWER partner university (restrictions apply, see website for details).

    MPower Financing Scholarship
  • While NAFSA is not focused on providing resources or assistance directly to students, they do provide some resources and links to more studentoriented Web sites.

    NAFSA
  • National Science Foundation - Provides funding programs for undergraduate and graduate students.
  • The Norway-America Association - Drammensveien 20 C, 0255 Oslo 2, Norway
  • OAS offers a number of fellowships to qualified applicants from OAS member states for graduate, undergraduate, and short term programs.

    Organization of American States
    • Department of Fellowships and
      Training Trainee Selection Division
      Washington, DC 20006-4499
  • The Rotary Foundation’s educational programs include Ambassadorial Scholarships, Grants for University Teachers, Group Study Exchange, and Rotary Centers for International Studies in peace and conflict resolution.

    Rotary International
    • One Rotary Center
      1560 Sherman Avenue
      Evanston, IL 60201-3698 USA
  • United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) - Free online searchable database for scholarships to international students
  • Educational Foundation International Fellowships - International Fellowships are awarded for full-time study or research to women who are not U.S. citizens or permanent residents. Both graduate and postgraduate study at accredited institutions are supported.

    AAUW
  • The American-Scandinavian Foundation offers funding (usually at the graduate level) for Scandinavians to undertake study of research programs in the United State. Candidates for awards are recommended to the ASF by our cooperating organizations, as follow: Eligibility: Applicants must be citizens of Denmark, Finland, Iceland , Norway or Sweden. The number and size of awards granted annually varies widely between countries. Contact ASF’s cooperating organizations for specific information regarding eligibility, award size and application deadlines. ASF’s Fellowship and Grant Division will be happy to assist with general inquiries.

    The American-Scandanavian Foundation
    • 15 East 65th St., New York, NY 10021
      (212) 879-9779
  • Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation
  • The International Fellowships Program provides support for up to three years of formal graduate-level study leading to a masters or doctoral degree. Fellows are selected from countries in Asia, Africa, the Middle East, Latin America, and Russia , where the Ford Foundation maintains active overseas programs. U.S. nationals are not eligible, although Fellows may study in the United States.

    Ford Foundation International Fellowship Program
  • National Science Foundation - Provides funding programs for undergraduate and graduate students.
  • OAS offers a number of fellowships to qualified applicants from OAS member states for graduate, undergraduate, and short term programs.

    Organization of American States
    • Department of Fellowships and Training
      Trainee Selection Division
      Washington, DC 20006-4499
  • International Peace Scholarship (IPS) is available to women from countries other than the US and Canada pursuing graduate studies. An applicant must be qualified for admission to full-time graduate study and working toward a graduate degree. In order to qualify for her first scholarship, an applicant must have a full year of coursework remaining. Maximum award amount is $6,000 annually and the application deadline is December 15.

    P.E.O.
    • P.E.O. International Peace Scholarship Fund
      P.E.O. Executive Office
      3700 Grand Avenue
      Des Moines, Iowa 50312-2899
      Phone: 515-255-3153 Fax: 515-255-3820
  • Researchers with advanced degrees (M.A., M.Sc. or equivalent) in developing countries may apply for fellowships ranging from US$ 6,000 to US$ 10,000. The amount varies according to duration and place of study. The program is financed by Japan through its funds in trust program for capacity-building of human resources. It grants a total of 20 fellowships a year to researchers in four areas: environment, intercultural dialogue, information and communication technologies, and peaceful conflict resolution.

    UNESCO/Keizo Obuchi Research Fellowship Programme
  • Not a lender but a resource to search for lenders that work with the school. Use search fields and select Cal Poly from the list of schools to return a list of lenders. Unfortunately, there are no student loans programs available for non-US students without a US co-signer. Your co-signer must be a creditworthy US citizen or permanent resident, who has lived in the US for the past two years. Typically a co-signer is a family or friend who agrees to accept responsibility for the loan in case the student is unable to meet the repayment terms.

    InternationalStudentLoan.com
  • Educaid EXTRA International Student Loan Program
    Tel. 1-800-955-8805, Contact person - Faye Becker
    1-617-426-0681
    1-800-255-8374

    First Union National Bank
  • This program provides student loans to competent persons from Latin American and Caribbean countries.

    Leo S. Rowe, Pan American Fund Grants
    • Tel. 202-458-6208, Fax. 202-458-3878 or 9897
      1889 F. St. NW, Washington, DC 20006
      rowefund@oas.org
  • MPOWER - Loans for international, domestic, and DACA students in the USA.
  • Prodigy Finance - Loans for international postgraduate students attending top universities.
  • Stilt - Loans for F-1, OPT, O-1, L-1, TN visa holders.
  • Does not require a US co-signer

    Global Student Loan Corporation
  • Credila Financial Services - Student loans for Indian students studying in the USA. Requires parents in India to be co-borrowers. - loan@credila.com
  • SallieMae - Educational loans for undergraduate and graduate students.

Credit Card

Article on obtaining a credit card and the importance of building credit

Books on Funding

  • Funding for U.S. Study by the Institute of International Education
  • The International Students' Scholarship Handbook by Turning Point