PhD Funding in USA for International Students – Apply Now

PhD Funding in USA for International Students – The United States of America (USA) is one of the most popular countries for international students to pursue a PhD. In 2021, according to the Institute of International Education (IIE),  there were more than 116,000 international students in the USA studying for a PhD.

The US government has played an important role in attracting and supporting international students who wish to pursue a PhD in the USA. In 2017, the Federal Government allocated over $1 billion to support graduate education and research partnerships with foreign universities. This includes scholarships, teaching assistantships, research assistantships, and other forms of financial assistance. The majority of the funding – approximately 80% – is awarded through the National Science Foundation (NSF). 

There are several factors that contribute to the high popularity of US PhD programs among international students. First and foremost is the quality of academic research offered by US universities. Research performed by American faculty is often cited as one of the most notable strengths of American universities. Additionally, PhD programs in the USA are typically much shorter than those in many other countries.

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Requirements for Receiving PhD Funding in USA for International Students

To be eligible for PhD funding in the United States, international students must have a bachelor’s degree from a regionally accredited institution. Additionally, they must have earned at least 3.0 GPA on their undergraduate degree and submit proof of graduation. Furthermore, international students must demonstrate intellectual ability and potential through their research proposal. Finally, they must pass a comprehensive exam administered by the American Evaluation Association (AEA).

PhD Funding in USA for International Students

There are several types of funding for PhD studies in the united States. Some of them include:

Knight-Hennessy Scholars at Stanford University

The Knight-Hennessy Scholars program provides financial assistance to international students pursuing a doctoral degree at a U.S. institution. The program emphasizes intellectual merit and leadership qualities, as well as demonstrated commitment to global citizenship.

For the selection process, applicants must demonstrate superior academic achievement and potential for research excellence.

AAUW International Fellowships in USA for Women

The American Association of University Women (AAUW) offers a number of fellowships to women pursuing graduate degrees in the United States. These fellowships can cover a wide range of expenses, including tuition, room and board, and travel. Eligibility is based on financial need and the applicant’s commitment to advancing women’s rights. Awards are made annually and typically range from $5,000 to $18,000.

Rotary Foundation Global Scholarship Grants for Development

The Rotary Foundation Global Scholarship Grants for Development program provides grants of up to $20,000 to students who are pursuing a doctoral degree in development studies or related disciplines at an accredited institution in the United States. The program is open to students from all countries. Applicants for this scholarship will be required to write a 500-word essay and attend an interview.

FINCAD Women in Finance Scholarship

The FINCAD Women in Finance Scholarship provides financial assistance to females pursuing a doctoral degree in finance or accounting from an accredited US academic institution. The scholarship offers full tuition, fees, and required course expenses for the doctoral program. In addition, the scholarship also covers the cost of books and living expenses while in the United States.

Awards are given on a selective basis, and applicants must be female, have a minimum 3.0 GPA, be enrolled full-time in an accredited graduate program in finance or accounting, and demonstrate financial need.

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Fulbright Foreign Student Program in USA

The Fulbright Foreign Student Program in the United States offers international students a unique opportunity to study in America. This program provides financial assistance, either in the form of grants or scholarships, to individuals who intend to study at American institutions of higher education.

In order to be eligible for a Fulbright grant, an applicant must be a citizen or national of an eligible country and have a valid passport. In addition, the applicant must have received a bachelor’s degree from an accredited institution in his or her home country. Finally, the applicant must demonstrate good letters of recommendation and prove that he or she has the ability to finance his or her education in America.

Aga Khan Foundation International Scholarship Program

The Aga Khan Foundation International Scholarship Program (AKFISP) offers full scholarships and other support to undergraduate, graduate, and postdoctoral students from countries in need, who are studying at accredited U.S. universities.

Applicants must have a minimum 2.5 GPA and be enrolled full-time in an accredited university in the United States. Selection is based on academic merit, need, and the applicant’s country of origin. Furthermore, awards are typically made to students who show excellent potential for achieving excellence in their field of study. 

Amelia Earhart Fellowships For Women

The Amelia Earhart Fellowship for Women offers full tuition and a stipend to women who are studying at or have completed a PhD in any field of study. The fellowship is open to female students from all over the world and is administered by the National Women’s History Museum (NWHM). To be eligible for the fellowship, applicants must be admitted to an accredited doctoral program in the USA and demonstrate financial need. 

The Cosmos Club Foundation Grant Program

The Cosmos Club Foundation Grant Program is a scholarship and grant program open to international students who are pursuing doctoral degrees in the United States. The foundation awards grants of up to $20,000 to graduate scholars. To be eligible, candidates must demonstrate exceptional academic achievement and a commitment to public service. Furthermore, they must be enrolled in an accredited U.S. university as a full-time student.

How to find PhD Funding in USA

The best way to find PhD scholarships in the USA is to use the internet. There are many websites that list PhD scholarships for international students. Furthermore, you can also contact your local US embassy or consulate for help.

Some of the most popular PhD scholarship search engines include Scholarship Search Engine, ScholarMatch, and EducationUSA. These websites allow you to search for PhD scholarships by location, the field of study, or type of scholarship.

When searching for PhD scholarships, keep in mind that not all scholarships are available to international students. Furthermore, the amount of money awarded varies from scholarship to scholarship.

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Factors to Consider when Searching for PhD Funding in USA

There are many benefits to pursuing a PhD in the USA, including access to world-class research facilities, plentiful funding opportunities, and strong networks with fellow scholars. However, before deciding to study in the USA, prospective students should carefully weigh all available options and consult with an advisory committee or other experts.

Here is a summary of key factors to consider when looking into PhD funding in the USA:

  1. The amount of funding available for PhDs varies significantly from program to program. Some universities offer generous support while others have relatively tight budgets. It is important to estimate how much money you will need in order to cover tuition, living expenses, and other associated costs.
  2. Many universities require applicants to submit an application for funding as well as a dissertation proposal. These applications can be time-consuming and daunting tasks, but they are essential for securing funding.
  3. Scholarships are often available for international students who qualify based on their academic qualifications and/or residency status in the US. However, these scholarships generally have very low acceptance rates. It is important to complete all necessary applications early on in your research process.
  4. Finally, it is important to be aware of the “foreign student premium”. This fee is charged to students who are not US citizens and it can amount to several thousand dollars per year. It is important to budget for this extra expense and to discuss it with your advisor before making any decisions.


Finding PhD funding in the USA can be a daunting task for international students. However, with a bit of research, you can find sources of funding that are tailored specifically to your needs and interests. Additionally, there are many PhD fellowships and scholarships available to international students that can help you finance your studies. So before deciding whether or not to apply for a PhD in the USA, it is important to do your research and assess what kind of funding options are available to you. Thank you for reading!

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