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Funding Your Study Abroad Experience

We often hear that one of your biggest concerns is how to fund your study abroad experience. This is certainly a valid consideration, and we want you to know that there are travel awards and scholarships available. We strongly encourage you to research external opportunities and pay close attention to deadlines. Remember, it's never too early to start planning.

UCO Internal Funding Opportunities

Financial Aid

Submit the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA), even if you don’t think you qualify for need-based aid or grants. By completing the FAFSA, you may be eligible to receive low-interest federal student loans to help cover the costs of study abroad. Students who receive federal aid are able to use that aid toward program tuition and fees as long as the coursework abroad counts in their degree program. However, students must be enrolled full time for 12 credit hours per semester.

For more information about eligibility requirements, meet with Brad Nicar in Student Financial Services - (SFS); call 405-974-2727 or email OneStop to get in touch with SFS.

College Travel Awards

The College of Business, College of Education and Professional Studies and College of Liberal Arts provide limited travel assistance for majors and minors participating in UCO study tours. To be considered for these awards, students should submit an initial study abroad application in the new study abroad portal Bronchos Abroad.

UCO Foundation Scholarships

Thanks to the generosity of donors, the UCO Foundation assists students with their college expenses by offering more than 450 scholarships and awards each year. While each scholarship award has its own unique selection criteria, they all reward students who work hard to maintain high academic standards, give back to the university and the community through their leadership and service, and represent UCO’s core values of character, civility and community. There may be some awards available to support study abroad experiences; be sure to create a profile and submit an application by the stated deadline on the UCO Foundation Scholarship portal.

External Funding Opportunities

Benjamin A. Gilman International Scholarship

The Gilman Scholarship Program offers grants for undergraduate study abroad and was established by the International Academic Opportunity Act of 2000. This scholarship provides awards for U.S. undergraduate students who are receiving Federal Pell Grant funding at a two-year or four-year college or university to enable them to participate in study abroad programs worldwide.

Sponsored by the U.S. Department of State Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs, this congressionally funded program is administered by the Institute of International Education through its Southern Regional Center in Houston.

For additional information and to apply for the scholarship, visit the Institute of International Education

Boren Awards for International Study

Boren Scholarships and Fellowships provide unique funding opportunities for U.S. undergraduate and graduate students to add an important international and language component to their educations. They focus on geographic areas, languages and fields of study that are critical to U.S. interests and underrepresented in study abroad.

For more information or to apply, visit Boren Awards for International Study

Fulbright Scholarship

This scholarship program is the largest U.S. international exchange program offering opportunities for students, scholars, and professionals to undertake international graduate study, advanced research, university teaching and teaching in elementary and secondary schools worldwide.

It awarded approximately six thousand grants in 2008, at a cost of more than $275.4 million, to U.S. students, teachers, professionals and scholars to study, teach, lecture and conduct research in more than 155 countries, and to their foreign counterparts to engage in similar activities in the United States.

For more information, visit Fulbright or contact UCO’s Fulbright advisor. The online campus deadline for receipt of the completed materials is August 15.

Diversity Abroad

Diversity Abroad provides a tool to search for scholarships available to non-traditional study abroad students. Economically disadvantaged students, African American, Asian American, Hispanic/Latino, and Native American students are strongly encouraged to apply, as well as from first-generation college students. For more information, visit the Diversity Abroad website. 

Fund for Education Abroad (FEA)

The Fund for Education Abroad invests in promising students with financial need who wish to study abroad. Potential applicants who meet eligibility requirements may participate in any international education program that meets their academic objectives. Scholarships range from $1,250-$10,000 and can be applied for programs that run for at least 28 days.

Undergraduate students interested in studying abroad in summer 2020, fall 2020 or academic year 2020-21 should visit the FEA website and apply by Jan. 17.


Freeman-ASIA accepts applications from U.S. citizens or permanent residents studying at the undergraduate level at a two-year or four-year college or university who demonstrate financial need to study abroad in East or Southeast Asia. This award provides need-based funding to assist the recipient with the cost of the study abroad program and related expenses, including airfare, basic living costs, local transportation, books, and other supplies.

For additional information or to apply for the scholarship, visit Freeman-ASIA.

International Education Financial Aid

IEFA is the premier resource for financial aid, college scholarship and grant information for the U.S. and international students wishing to study abroad.

At this site, you will find the most comprehensive college scholarship search and grant listings plus international student loan programs and other information to promote study abroad. 

For additional information or to apply for the scholarship, visit IEFA.