Nursing Scholarships for International Students

Janice Monti, Ph.D.
Updated October 9, 2023
Edited by
International students seeking aid to finance their nursing studies should review this page for scholarships, grants, and work study opportunities.
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Mid-adult Hispanic nurse holds a digital tablet during a medical staff conference. He has short black hair and is wearing light blue scrubs. He is smiling at the camera. His colleagues are conversing with themselves in the background.Credit: SDI Productions / E+ / Getty Images

To help international nursing students finance their education, colleges and universities, private organizations, and professional associations offer financial assistance. Aspiring nurses who come to the U.S. from all over the world can often find scholarships, grants, and even work-study opportunities while earning their degrees.

All international students must hold a student visa to study in the U.S., but their acceptance into undergraduate or graduate nursing programs generally follows the same steps as U.S. citizens. Applicants must formally apply to an accredited program, complete all required courses and clinical hours, and pass the appropriate NCLEX to obtain licensure.

This overview provides details on just some of the many nursing scholarships for international students.

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Undergraduate International Nursing Scholarships

A Nurse I Am Scholarship

Who Can Apply: Cherokee Uniforms, a major medical apparel company, provides funding for up to ten nursing scholarships each year. Candidates must be currently enrolled in an accredited LVN/LPN, RN degree (ADN or BSN), diploma, or RN-to-BSN program. In addition to financial assistance, winners receive a gift package of scrubs, medical instruments, and accessories. Unlicensed students receive an American Organization for Nursing Leadership (AONL) Student Membership for one year.

Amount: $3,000

East Tennessee State International Students Academic Merit Scholarship

Who Can Apply: International nursing students interested in attending ETSU may apply for this award if they can demonstrate a record of academic achievement comparable to a 3.0 GPA on a 4.0 U.S. scale. Recipients must have an F-1 or J-1 student visa.

Amount: Up to $12,500 for undergraduate students; $5,000 for graduate students; $9,000 for doctorate students

Emergency Nurses Association Foundation Non-RN Scholarship

Who Can Apply: This scholarship supports students pursuing an associate or bachelor’s degree in nursing. Applicants must attend a program accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education or the Accreditation Commission for Education in Nursing. Applicants must have a 3.0 GPA and two letters of recommendation.

Amount: Varies

Geraldine “Polly” Bednash Scholarship

Who Can Apply: This award is restricted to students admitted or enrolled in a baccalaureate nursing program at institutions affiliated with the American Association of Colleges of Nursing. Applicants must demonstrate a 3.2 GPA in their current or last attended school. Two scholarships are awarded four times each year.

Amount: $5,000

Nurses Make a Difference Scholarship

Who Can Apply: Cascade Healthcare Solutions awards this scholarship to students enrolled in or admitted to undergraduate nursing programs at accredited colleges and universities. Candidates must have a cumulative 3.0 GPA and hold U.S. residency status or a valid student visa.

Amount: $1,000

R&D Systems Scholarship

Who Can Apply: This scholarship, available to students worldwide, supports associate, undergraduate, or graduate nursing or science-related degrees. The application requires two short personal statements on nursing as a profession and the applicant’s career goals.

Amount: $1,500

Slippery Rock University International Student Tuition Waiver

Who Can Apply: Newly enrolled international undergraduate students in any major, including nursing, may apply for this financial award. The renewable scholarship applies to the cost of full out-of-state tuition.

Amount: $3,500 + $1,500 for a “B” Average

University of Illinois at Chicago Laurette Kirstein Scholarship

Who Can Apply: The school awards eight scholarships to support international students enrolled at UIC pursuing a full-time undergraduate or graduate degree in any field of study, including nursing. Students must hold a minimum cumulative GPA of 3.5.

Amount: $5,000

Graduate International Nursing Scholarships

Advanced Practice Healthcare Scholarship Grant

Who Can Apply: This renewable grant addresses the need for graduate-trained, advanced practice healthcare professionals. Recipients must fulfill a 12-month service obligation, practicing full-time, direct patient care at a qualified facility in California.

Amount: $25,000

Association of periOperative Registered Nurses Foundation (AORN) Scholarship

Who Can Apply: The AORN Foundation awards academic scholarships to students pursuing a career in perioperative nursing, including RNs seeking a master’s degree or doctorate. Applicants must have a cumulative GPA of 3.0 or higher.

Amount: Varies

Deborah E. Trautman Future Nurse Leadership Scholarship

Who Can Apply: Students may apply for this scholarship if they are currently enrolled in an accredited master’s or doctoral nursing program at a school affiliated with the American Association of Colleges of Nursing (AACN). Applicants must also hold membership in the AACN Graduate Nursing Student Academy (membership is free).

Amount: $3,500

Emergency Nursing Foundation/Sigma Theta Tau International Grant

Who Can Apply: Open to applicants worldwide, this award supports underrepresented graduate students interested in conducting research that will advance the specialized practice of emergency nursing and help shape healthcare policy in direct patient care.

Amount: $6,000

Epsilon Sigma Alpha Alice/Jeanne Wagner Memorial Endowment

Who Can Apply: U.S. and international students who plan to attend undergraduate or graduate nursing programs in the U.S. may apply. Candidates must demonstrate academic ability, leadership and service, and financial need.

Amount: $1,300

Johns Hopkins School of Nursing Merit Scholarship

Who Can Apply: Open to international and U.S. students who apply to Johns Hopkins graduate nursing programs, this merit award supports candidates with leadership potential, demonstrated academic achievement, and a record of community service.

Amount: $5,000-$25,000

March of Dimes Graduate Nursing Scholarship

Who Can Apply: These awards support RNs currently enrolled in graduate programs with an emphasis on maternal-child nursing. Applicants must be members of at least one professional organization that represents women’s health, obstetrics, or neonatal care.

Amount: $10,000

MPOWER Women in STEM Scholarship

Who Can Apply: This program provides support for female international or DACA students currently enrolled or accepted in a full-time STEM degree program, including nursing.

Amount: $1,000-$6,000

The National Association of Directors of Nursing Administration Stephanie Carroll Scholarship

Who Can Apply: This scholarship provides funding for undergraduate or graduate students who plan to specialize in long-term care or geriatrics. U.S. and international applicants enrolled in an accredited U.S. nursing program may apply.

Amount: $1,000-$5,000

Oncology Nursing Foundation and the Oncology Nursing Certification Corporation Master’s Scholarship

Who Can Apply: This award supports graduate training for RNs interested in oncology nursing. Applicants must currently attend, or plan to enroll in, a master’s program accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education or the National League for Nursing.

Amount: $5,000

Northern Illinois University School of Nursing

Who Can Apply: Each year, the Northern Illinois School of Nursing awards $130,000 in scholarship funds to undergraduate, graduate, and postgraduate students. Awards are granted based on academic achievement or financial need. Some are available for part-time students.

Amount: Varies

Nurse Corps Scholarship Program

Who Can Apply: U.S. citizens without federal judgment liens or debts can have tuition, eligible fees, and reasonable costs paid in exchange for working in a critical shortage facility after graduation.

Amount: Varies

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