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Financial Aid

A wide range of financial aid opportunities are available for study abroad, including a number of competitive scholarships that are awarded based on different criteria. Keep reading to learn more about the Study Abroad scholarships and other sources of support that may be available to you as a Cal State San Marcos student. You can find more information on the qualifications needed to apply for these Study Abroad scholarships and how to apply in the Office of Global Education. If you have questions about financial aid, please see the Study Abroad Advisor in the Office of Global Education.

General Study Abroad Scholarships

The Ernie and Leslie Zomalt Study Abroad Scholarship

  • Eligibility: Available to CSUSM students who have been accepted to one of the CSUSM exchange programs or the CSU International Programs (CSU IP) for fall semester or full-year study. 
  • Deadline: Application forms will be emailed to all eligible students approximately one month prior to the May 1 (Fall semester/Year applicants) and November 1 (Spring Semester applicants) deadlines.

The Zwick Study Abroad Scholarship

  • Eligibility: Available to CSUSM students in the College of Humanities, Arts, Behavioral, and Social Sciences who have a cumulative GPA of 2.75 or higher and are studying abroad a semester or more. 
  • Deadline: Application forms will be emailed to all eligible students approximately one month prior to the May 1 (Fall semester/Year applicants) and November 1 (Spring Semester applicants) deadlines.

The CSU International Programs Scholarships

  • Eligibility: Made possible through the generous donations of past IP students, faculty, and donors a wide range of scholarships are available to CSUSM students who are applying to one of the programs offered by CSU International Programs.
  • Offerings include: 
    • CSU IP Ghana Scholarship
    • CSU IP General Scholarship
    • CSU IP Language & Culture Scholarship
    • Lyman G. Chaffee Scholarship (yearlong applicants only)
    • Michelle Marriot Study in France Memorial Scholarship (Aix yearlong applicants only)
    • Ward Wallach Memorial International Scholarship (Waseda, Japan yearlong applicants only)
  • Deadline: Visit the IP Application and select from a drop down menu the award to which you would like to apply by February 15.

ISEP Scholarship Opportunities

  • Eligibility:  Varies, must be studying abroad through the International Student Exchange Program (ISEP). Specific scholarships for specific destinations also available.
  • Deadline: Click the link above to check specific deadlines.

Benjamin A. Gilman International Scholarship

  • Eligibility:  Sponsored by the U.S. Department of State, Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs and administered by the Institute of International Education, this program enables students who have limited financial means to participate in Study Abroad opportunities worldwide. The program provides awards of up to $5,000 for U.S. citizen undergraduate students at two- and four-year institutions to pursue summer (4+ weeks), semester or academic yearlong study opportunities in other countries.  To apply, students must be a US Citizen & receiving a Federal Pell Grant at the time of application and cannot be studying abroad in a country currently under a U.S. Department of State Travel Warning or in Cuba. These awards are mostly granted to diverse applicants going to underrepresented locations in Study Abroad.
  • Deadline: For more information, application deadlines, and the online application, please click the link above to access the Gilman Program website. There are two application cycles in October and March for Spring and Fall applicants respectively, with limited awards available for summer programs (applications due in early March).

Freeman Asia Award

  • Awards range from $3,000 to $7,000 for U.S. citizens studying abroad in Asia for a summer, semester or academic year.  Only students with GPAs of 2.8 and above will be considered.  Candidates studying intensive languages or Asian studies are highly encouraged to apply.  Scholarships are due in two cycles:  October for Spring study, March for Summer/Fall/Year study.

Boren Awards

  • Eligibility: Boren awards provide support to U.S. students to pursue the study of languages and cultures currently underrepresented abroad. The application for this scholarship is extensive and requires several months of serious preparation, knowledge of country, and an essay regarding how the overseas program will support national security interests abroad. Following participation, awardees are expected to fulfill one year of governmental service. A Boren fellowship is also available for graduate students. Awards range from $8,000-$25,000. Please visit the program website for deadline and extensive eligibility information.

Fund for Education Abroad Scholarship

  • Eligibility: FEA Scholarships are awarded once a year for U.S. citizens studying abroad for more than 4 weeks. Becoming a scholar requires a service commitment to your home campus to aid in the promotion of study abroad. Preference is given to students from underrepresented groups, those engaging in foreign language study abroad, and less commonly visited study locations. Please visit the program website for deadline information.

Rotary Scholarships

  • Eligibility: The Rotary Foundation is the largest private source of scholarships in the world. The goal of these scholarships is to promote international understanding through student exchange. Contact your local Rotary club and visit the Rotary Foundation website for specific information on grant opportunities and deadlines.

Diversity Abroad/AIFS Achievement Scholarships

  • Eligibility: Diversity Abroad, in cooperation with the AIFS Foundation, offers $500 and $1,000 scholarships for students participating in an AIFS program. Economically disadvantaged students, African-American, Asian-American, Hispanic/Latino, and Native-American students are strongly encouraged to apply. Please visit the program website for deadline information.

Frederick Douglass Global Fellowship (CIEE)

  • Eligibility: Must be a current undergraduate freshman or sophomore attending a Minority Serving Institution. Students must also have a minimum GPA 3.00 and Pell Grant recipient. Reside in the U.S. with student status or be a U.S. citizen, U.S. national or permanent resident.
  • Deadline: February 14, 2021
  • The Frederick Douglass Global Fellowship is made possible through a partnership between CIEE and the Rutgers Center for Minority Serving Institutions (Rutgers CMSI), in an effort to make study abroad accessible to students from Minority Serving Institutions (MSI).
  • 100% of a recipients’ program fees and travel costs are covered for an intensive 4-week, 3-credit summer study abroad program designed to enhance their leadership and intercultural skills. Frederick Douglass Global Fellows commit to sharing their experience and intercultural growth with peers and classmates.
  • All qualified applicants who don’t receive a Frederick Douglass Global Fellowship are guaranteed a $1,500 grant toward summer '21 programs. 

Country/Region-Specific Study Abroad Scholarships


Denmark’s International Study Program (DIS), the CSU IP program in Denmark, has allocated funds for students who otherwise would not be able to study abroad. Follow this link to learn more about the DIS Scholarship Opportunities.


Baden-Wurttemberg Fellowship Program:  Only open to students in Advanced German, this scholarship for CSU IP Germany applicants could provide up to 400 Euros a month for the duration of your program. CSUIP Germany students will reach out to the International Offices of their host universities for application details, typically due by March 31 each year. 

The German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD) offers a wide range of scholarships for study in Germany. For an overview of the scholarship programs, please see the application section of their website.

Cultural Vistas provides information on scholarships for internships and study abroad opportunities in Germany.  


Inclusive Ireland Scholarship for Fall 2021 study will aid a student with a 3.0 GPA identifying as BIPOC (Black, Indigenous, and People of Colour) to study in Ireland for a semester.  Visit website for eligibility details and application.


The Bridging Project for Study Abroad/Japan is sponsored by the Association of Teachers of Japanese. Applications are accepted twice a year, usually in April (Fall Study) and October (Spring Study). Awards are made in the amount of $2,500 for one semester of study and $4,000 for an academic year.


The North American Language and Culture Assistants Program (NALCAP) is sponsored by the Ministry of Education of Spain, offering college students and graduates who are native-like speakers of English the opportunity to spend a school year in Spain sharing their language and culture as an assistant teacher at K-12 schools.  Placements are offered all across Spain and run from October to May.  Applications close in April.

United Kingdom  

Several prestigious scholarships are available for study in the UK. Please note that some are for postgraduate study; applicants apply during their senior year of college. See the websites below to learn more about each program.

More Financial Aid and Scholarship Resources for Study Abroad

Here's a list of useful links for finding more information about financial aid, scholarships, and other funding for Study Abroad: