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MSU Office of Study Abroad Scholarships

Click here (PDF)*Opens in new window for a full description of all MSU Office of Study Abroad scholarship options (including the MSU Federal Credit Union Scholarship), eligibility criteria, and the application form.

Am I eligible?

MSU undergraduate students applying to any credit-bearing study abroad program are eligible for MSU Office of Study Abroad Scholarships.

MSU graduate students applying to join a credit-bearing group program abroad are also eligible; however, graduate students pursuing individual or independent research abroad are not. A special award is reserved for medical students doing study abroad.

What kinds of scholarships are available?

Study Abroad at MSU has benefited from the extraordinary generosity of many scholarship donors. See the following acknowledgments and the application form for more details on specific awards.

OSA scholarships are grouped into two broad categories: need-and-merit awards and merit-only awards.

Most scholarships are based on both academic performance and financial need. General requirements for need-and-merit awards include an overall GPA of at least 2.5 and a Free Application for Federal Student Assistance (FAFSA) on file in the Office of Financial Aid (OFA). The FAFSA is required to assess financial need. Because it can take many weeks to process a FAFSA, applicants who have not already filed one should contact OFA about applying at least two months before the scholarship application deadline.

Other scholarships are based exclusively on academic performance. Applicants for merit-only awards must have an overall GPA of at least 3.5 and submit a scholarship essay describing how study abroad will help them meet their personal and academic goals.

Additional requirements apply to some scholarships - see the application form for details.

How do I apply?

Your scholarship application must correspond to a study abroad program application. The easiest way to make sure the two go together is to apply online. At the end of the online program application process you may add your scholarship application information.

If you have already applied for your program you may turn in a paper scholarship application. Click the link at the top of this page for more information and a printable copy of the application form.

Submit a scholarship application for each program to which you apply. If you change programs you may transfer a scholarship application or award from one program to another if both programs take place during the same term. However, you may not transfer a scholarship application or award from one semester to another.

What are my chances of getting a scholarship?

In recent years competition for OSA scholarships has increased steadily. Between 30% and 40% of applicants receive awards.

Advice for merit-only applicants

All scholarships are highly competitive, but competition for merit-only awards is particularly intense because they constitute only 25% of all scholarships available.

Though the minimum overall GPA to be eligible is 3.5, it is unusual for a student with a GPA under 3.7 to win a merit-only award. On the other hand, a high GPA does not guarantee an award.

The quality of your essay is crucial. Because many merit-only applicants have a GPA of 3.8 or higher, it is important to compose your essay very carefully.

Click hereOpens in new window for a look at sample essays from recent awardees.

New - Testimonial Requirement for Scholarship Winners

As a scholarship recipient, you will be required to submit a written testimonial and 2-3 photos showcasing your experience abroad. For details about this requirement, click here (PDF)*.


Thanks to a generous endowment from the MSU Federal Credit UnionOpens in new window, more students will be able to reap the many academic, personal, and professional benefits study abroad experiences provide.

The Office of Study Abroad also thanks the following generous donors for making special awards possible:

OSA also administers:

Click here (PDF)*Opens in new window for a full description of all MSU Office of Study Abroad scholarship options (including the MSU Federal Credit Union Scholarship), eligibility criteria, and the application form.

*Adobe Acrobat Reader Opens in new window is required to read PDF documents.