International Scholarship Myths Busted
4 min

International Scholarship Myths Busted

4 min
Uploaded on
Dec 19, 2022
Last updated on
Mar 11, 2023
Uploaded on
Dec 19, 2022
Last updated on
Mar 11, 2023
female student working on a laptop
Our favourite ship - scholarship!

Many students wish to study abroad for many reasons. Some reasons include a change of environment, better education, and a chance to explore other parts of the world. However, studying abroad comes at a heavy price. Apart from tuition, there are other factors to consider, such as accommodation, food, and transportation, all of which lead to high costs. Fortunately, international scholarships cover some or all of the expenses. As a result, many students who wish to study abroad apply for these international scholarships to get a chance to pursue their dreams for little or no cost. 

As with anything, there are myths surrounding international scholarships. These myths discourage many students from applying because they assume they are not fit to win a scholarship to study abroad. Here are the common scholarship myths and the facts to dispel them.

Top 8 Common Myths Busted 

International Scholarships are for Geniuses

This is the most common myth about international scholarships. You may have heard that you must be a straight-A student or at the top of your class before getting an international scholarship. This is simply a myth. It is not true. The fact is that while having strong academic grades increases your chances of receiving a scholarship, there are other ways to get an international scholarship. Not all scholarships are solely based on academic performance, like: 

  • Need-based 
  • Experience-based 
  • Athletic scholarships 

These scholarships are available that assess a student's ability in areas other than academics. 

Only a fraction of schools and international scholarship committees chose recipients based on their grades; in reality, the selection process considers various additional factors. This contains anything from the recipient's interests and abilities to where they reside. Everyone has a shot now that many organizations and schools provide scholarships and financial assistance to international students. 

Outstanding Academic Performance is Mandatory

Some of the Erasmus Mundus scholarship programs, for instance, do not specify academic performance as a criterion. Instead, they seek out students with an interest in and work experience in that field for their master's scholarships. If you do not have excellent grades, don't be discouraged. Instead, make a solid application and convince the scholarship committee of your statement of purpose. Because each scholarship has various criteria and requirements, it is essential to carefully review each possibility before dismissing it as impossible.

The Application Process is Long and not Worth the Stress.

Applying to study abroad may seem like a long process, but surely you have your reasons to study abroad and go through the entire process. International scholarships are no exception, as applying for an international scholarship is a long process indeed. Aside from being competitive, such applications sometimes necessitate a significant amount of documentation, making the prospect of applying to seem like an exhausting process. As a result, many students give up on applying and miss out on the possibility of getting a scholarship. 

These procedures are not as long and challenging as you believe. Yes, it requires some paperwork to select eligible and deserving candidates, but it is not stressful when compared to the benefits that come with it. The best way to apply for an international scholarship is to be prepared. Gather all documents ahead of time. When you have all the required documents, you must submit them and wow the scholarship board with your essay.

It Isn't Easy To Find International Scholarships.

It is always the largest organisations that give international scholarships that receive the most attention and whose names are well recognised. This generates the wrong perception that only a few international scholarships are available, making them highly competitive and challenging. That's just a myth. Thousands of organizations in the EU give international scholarships, and many need more candidates in some years. The key is to do your research, join study abroad communities on platforms like Setlinn, and look out for befitting international scholarships that suit your situation.

Countries like the USA have several universities and institutions that provide scholarships, find out more about the different ways to secure a scholarship in the USA

You Still Have To Spend A Lot Of Money On An International Scholarship.

This is a no-brainer. The concept of international scholarships is to provide financial support to prospective international students. There is no denying that the amount of financial support you receive varies per scholarship. Some scholarships are partly-funded, while others are fully-funded and might pay up to €1,500 monthly. Higher-level courses, such as a Ph.D., are often sponsored more liberally.

You Can Apply to Just One Scholarship Program at a Time

Remember, it is possible to apply for multiple scholarships; in some cases, you can combine them, which can make a tremendous difference. Even if your scholarship does not cover your expenditures, you can work part-time to cover the gap. Many countries allow working while studying abroad (with some rules). Don't limit yourself because of finances. There are a lot of fully funded scholarships that would not let you spend a dime.

Every Scholarship Requires An Essay

Granted, in most situations, essays are required in the application procedure. This is because many institutions and scholarship-awarding organizations want to know why you're applying for a scholarship. They want to learn about your background and determine if you deserve a financial scholarship. However, this is only true in some cases. Some scholarships do not require an essay and instead evaluate you based on 

  • Your GPA 
  • Test results 
  • Extracurricular activities 
  • Financial need

Your Personal Essay Needs to be Sentimental

Students often assume that their personal essays should talk just about their personal struggles and the emotional rollercoaster ride they may have been on, but that is untrue. Colleges are looking for an inspiring and a great story about you, and that does not necessarily have to be a sad one. However, if you need help expressing yourself in writing and are concerned that an essay would reduce your chances of receiving an international scholarship, go for those that do not require one. These scholarships depend entirely on your academic performance, extracurricular activities, and financial situation.

You Need Recommendation Letters From Popular Academics.

Students get caught up in the competition to obtain recommendation letters from everyone they believe is essential and would look good on their application. But the fact is that if you don't know that person personally, those letters will be useless to you. Students should notice this little element. The letter isn't only about stringing words together to form a statement. It should represent your personality, interests, and characteristics. Someone who knows you personally will express your personality through words. It's better to request from professors or teachers who taught you than from a popular academic who barely knows you.

Never limit yourself. You only know what you stand to gain once you try. Do your research and make meaningful connections, especially in study-abroad communities. You can get all the relevant information you want without succumbing to myths. 

Frequently Asked Questions