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Top Graduate School Scholarships Due Soon in April 2024

Written by Will Geiger

Will Geiger is the co-founder of Scholarships360 and has a decade of experience in college admissions and financial aid. He is a former Senior Assistant Director of Admissions at Kenyon College where he personally reviewed 10,000 admissions applications and essays. Will also managed the Kenyon College merit scholarship program and served on the financial aid appeals committee. He has also worked as an Associate Director of College Counseling at a high school in New Haven, Connecticut. Will earned his master’s in education from the University of Pennsylvania and received his undergraduate degree in history from Wake Forest University.

Full Bio

Learn about our editorial policies

Updated: April 3rd, 2024

One of the biggest misconceptions about student debt is that it is mostly impacting college students. The reality is that the graduate school student debt is growing at an even more rapid pace. Luckily there are a number of great graduate student scholarships available!

These graduate school scholarships, when combined with graduate assistantships and fellowships and institutional aid, can make graduate school much more affordable. So, whether you are a masters student or a doctoral student, you can receive funding to help pay for college and eliminate your student debt burden with these opportunities!

Don’t forget to try out our filter buttons to browse scholarships for med school, business school, law school, and more.

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Scholarship Review Process

The Scholarships360 Research Team reviews all scholarships individually and strives to exclude any scholarship where any of the below applies:

  • The scholarship requires a fee to apply
  • The scholarship provider’s privacy policy allows for the misuse of student data
  • The scholarship requires paid membership in an organization (with certain exceptions for reputable trade organizations and others)
  • Student are required to sign up for a site or service to apply*
  • The scholarship seems primarily used for lead generation** or idea harvesting purposes***
  • The scholarship website has many grammatical errors and/or advertisements
  • The scholarship or scholarship providing organization seem untrustworthy
  • There is no evidence the scholarship was previously awarded
  • The scholarship has not been awarded in the past 12 months
  • There is no available contact information

If you believe a scholarship has been published in error, please reach out to [email protected] and we’ll take a look!


* There are certain exceptions to this, for example if the sponsoring organization is a major corporation or nonprofit with its own scholarship application system.
** Lead generation scholarships will require students to sign up for an app or website and require minimal (if any) application requirements.
***Idea harvesting scholarships will require students to submit blog posts or other materials that companies may use for marketing purposes.

Learn about our editorial policies
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1245 scholarships
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$10,000 “No Essay” Scholarship

This scholarship has been verified by the scholarship providing organization.

Offered by Scholarships360

Exclusive
1 award worth $10,000
Deadline Jun 30, 2024
Grade Level All Grade Levels

Offered by Scholarships360

Exclusive

The Scholarships360 $10,000 “No Essay” Scholarship is open to all students who want some extra help paying for their education. Whether you are a high…Show More

The Scholarships360 $10,000 “No Essay” Scholarship is open to all students who want some extra help paying for their education. Whether you are a high…Show More

The Scholarships360 $10,000 “No Essay” Scholarship is open to all students who want some extra help paying for their education. Whether you are a high school student who hopes to go to college, a graduate student who’s in a master’s program, or an adult learner who wants to return to school, you are eligible for our no essay scholarship. This scholarship will be awarded to students who get the most out of Scholarships360 scholarships and content. You will be a strong applicant if you apply to scholarships with the Scholarships360 platform. Finalists for this scholarship will be interviewed about their process for funding their education.Show Less

1 award worth $10,000
Deadline Jun 30, 2024
Grade Level All Grade Levels
Apply

$2,000 Sallie Mae Scholarship

This scholarship has been verified by the scholarship providing organization.

Offered by Sallie Mae

Easy Application
1 award worth $2,000
Deadline Apr 30, 2024
Grade Level HS Upperclassmen, College & Graduate Students

Offered by Sallie Mae

Easy Application

Sallie Mae will award $2,000 each month to eligible entrants. No essay or account sign-ups, just a simple scholarship for those seeking help paying for…

Sallie Mae will award $2,000 each month to eligible entrants. No essay or account sign-ups, just a simple scholarship for those seeking help paying for…

Sallie Mae will award $2,000 each month to eligible entrants. No essay or account sign-ups, just a simple scholarship for those seeking help paying for school.

1 award worth $2,000
Deadline Apr 30, 2024
Grade Level HS Upperclassmen, College & Graduate Students
Apply

“Get Inspired” TikTok Scholarship

This scholarship has been verified by the scholarship providing organization.

Offered by Scholarships360

Exclusive
1 award worth $500
Deadline Jul 1, 2024
Grade Level All Grade Levels

Offered by Scholarships360

Exclusive

Online platforms like TikTok have given people all around the world the opportunity to create and share content. But sometimes with so many people constantly…Show More

Online platforms like TikTok have given people all around the world the opportunity to create and share content. But sometimes with so many people constantly…Show More

Online platforms like TikTok have given people all around the world the opportunity to create and share content. But sometimes with so many people constantly posting and sharing, it’s hard to break out of all the noise. That’s why Scholarships360 is asking what or even who inspires you to create, to share, and to connect with others. To enter this scholarship, all you have to do is follow our Scholarships360 TikTok account, like the “Get Inspired” post pinned to our profile, and comment on what inspires you. For extra consideration, tag some friends who inspire you as well!Show Less

1 award worth $500
Deadline Jul 1, 2024
Grade Level All Grade Levels
Apply

Niche $25,000 “No Essay” Scholarship

This scholarship has been verified by the scholarship providing organization.

Offered by Niche

Easy Application
1 award worth $25,000
Deadline May 31, 2024
Grade Level All Grade Levels

Offered by Niche

Easy Application

Easy scholarship open to all high school and college students, as well as anyone looking to attend college or graduate school in the next year!

Easy scholarship open to all high school and college students, as well as anyone looking to attend college or graduate school in the next year!

Easy scholarship open to all high school and college students, as well as anyone looking to attend college or graduate school in the next year!

1 award worth $25,000
Deadline May 31, 2024
Grade Level All Grade Levels
Apply

TikTok Diploma Frame Giveaway

This scholarship has been verified by the scholarship providing organization.

Offered by Scholarships360 and Church Hill Classics

Exclusive
2 awards worth $250 Diploma Frame Gift Certificates
Deadline Jul 31, 2024
Grade Level High School Seniors, College & Graduate Students

Offered by Scholarships360 and Church Hill Classics

Exclusive

Have you thought about how you will display that diploma that you're working so hard to earn? We are happy to share that we have…Show More

Have you thought about how you will display that diploma that you're working so hard to earn? We are happy to share that we have…Show More

Have you thought about how you will display that diploma that you're working so hard to earn? We are happy to share that we have the answer! Scholarships360 is excited to announce our new TikTok Diploma Frame Giveaway! In partnership with Church Hill Classics, we are giving away custom diploma frames (in the form of $250 gift certificates) to two lucky students! To apply to win a diploma frame, simply follow these steps: Follow the Diploma Frame TikTok account Follow the Scholarships360 TikTok account Like Scholarships360's pinned "Diploma Frame TikTok Giveaway" post and comment how you will make the most of your high school, career/technical, or college degree! We look forward to reading your comments!Show Less

2 awards worth $250 Diploma Frame Gift Certificates
Deadline Jul 31, 2024
Grade Level High School Seniors, College & Graduate Students
Apply

$25k “Be Bold” No-Essay Scholarship

This scholarship has been verified by the scholarship providing organization.

Offered by Bold.org

Easy Application
1 award worth $25,000
Deadline May 1, 2024
Grade Level All Grade Levels

Offered by Bold.org

Easy Application

Open to high school students, college students, community college students, and graduate students.

Open to high school students, college students, community college students, and graduate students.

Open to high school students, college students, community college students, and graduate students.

1 award worth $25,000
Deadline May 1, 2024
Grade Level All Grade Levels
Apply

Foster Greatness Scholarship

This scholarship has been verified by the scholarship providing organization.

Offered by Foster Greatness

Exclusive
1 award worth $500
Deadline May 15, 2024
Grade Level College & Graduate Students

Offered by Foster Greatness

Exclusive

The Foster Greatness Scholarship is offered to one college or graduate student in the state of California who has been part of the foster care…Show More

The Foster Greatness Scholarship is offered to one college or graduate student in the state of California who has been part of the foster care…Show More

The Foster Greatness Scholarship is offered to one college or graduate student in the state of California who has been part of the foster care system in their life. To apply for this $500 scholarship, students must create a short video (one minute or less) introducing themselves and sharing what they would like to see in a community created for people with lived experience in foster care. To be eligible for this scholarship, applicants must also create a free Foster Greatness account where they will be able to access a variety of digital tools and resources around work, education, and more. This scholarship will be awarded to students based on both the quality of their video response and the manner in which they engage with the Foster Greatness platform. Students who get the most out of the Foster Greatness platform by engaging with the tools and content will be given higher consideration. Finalists will be interviewed about how the Foster Greatness community can positively impact their lives. Apply by May 15th to be considered for this scholarship!Show Less

1 award worth $500
Deadline May 15, 2024
Grade Level College & Graduate Students
Apply

“Jump for Joy” InstaScholarship

This scholarship has been verified by the scholarship providing organization.

Offered by Scholarships360

Exclusive
1 award worth $500
Deadline Jul 1, 2024
Grade Level All Grade Levels

Offered by Scholarships360

Exclusive

When you’re not searching for scholarships, what do you like to do for fun? Do you dance? Play sports? Watch movies? Here at Scholarships360, we…Show More

When you’re not searching for scholarships, what do you like to do for fun? Do you dance? Play sports? Watch movies? Here at Scholarships360, we…Show More

When you’re not searching for scholarships, what do you like to do for fun? Do you dance? Play sports? Watch movies? Here at Scholarships360, we know how important it is to enjoy life. That’s why we’re offering a $500 scholarship to one student who tells us what makes them jump for joy! Whether it’s spending time with your friends, playing with your dog, or jamming out to music, we want to know what brings a smile to your face. To apply for this scholarship, simply follow us on Instagram, go to the “Jump for Joy” InstaScholarship post at the top of our grid, like the post, and drop a comment about something you love to do for fun. Extra consideration will be given to students who mention at least one friend in their comment! Show Less

1 award worth $500
Deadline Jul 1, 2024
Grade Level All Grade Levels
Apply

$2,500 ScholarshipPoints Scholarship

This scholarship has been verified by the scholarship providing organization.

Offered by ScholarshipPoints

Easy Application
1 award worth $2,500
Deadline Apr 30, 2024
Grade Level All Grade Levels

Offered by ScholarshipPoints

Easy Application

Easy $2,500 scholarship from ScholarshipPoints open to all students.

Easy $2,500 scholarship from ScholarshipPoints open to all students.

Easy $2,500 scholarship from ScholarshipPoints open to all students.

1 award worth $2,500
Deadline Apr 30, 2024
Grade Level All Grade Levels
Apply

“Gutsy Graduate Student” Essay Scholarship

This scholarship has been verified by the scholarship providing organization.

Offered by Scholarships360

Exclusive
1 award worth $500
Deadline Jan 31, 2025
Grade Level Graduate Students

Offered by Scholarships360

Exclusive

Ok, so first question–why is this scholarship named the “Gutsy” Graduate Student Essay Scholarship? If you are enrolled in graduate school (during the 2024-25 academic…Show More

Ok, so first question–why is this scholarship named the “Gutsy” Graduate Student Essay Scholarship? If you are enrolled in graduate school (during the 2024-25 academic…Show More

Ok, so first question–why is this scholarship named the “Gutsy” Graduate Student Essay Scholarship? If you are enrolled in graduate school (during the 2024-25 academic year) or have heard stories from those enrolled, you already know! “Gutsy” means courageous and determined, which nearly all successful graduate students are. Why else would one continue on with rigorous academics while often living on a shoestring? The rewards of graduate school are numerous, especially the more focused and advanced level of specialized study in your chosen field. Learning with like-minded people who share your passion is fulfilling, and the networking is awesome. The flipside of graduate school is the costly student loans to fund it. With this in mind, the "Gutsy" Graduate Student Essay Scholarship aims to help out a passionate graduate student who is actively looking for ways to fund their higher education journey. Please note that applicants will be reviewed based on both the quality of their essay and quantity of scholarships applied for on the Scholarships360 platform. Scholarships360 users who are more active on the platform will be given higher consideration. Good luck on your educational journey, and we hope to read your application! Show Less

1 award worth $500
Deadline Jan 31, 2025
Grade Level Graduate Students
Apply

“Scholar Dollars” Essay Scholarship for Black Students

This scholarship has been verified by the scholarship providing organization.

Offered by Scholarships360

Exclusive
1 award worth $500
Deadline Jan 31, 2025
Grade Level HS Upperclassmen, College & Graduate Students

Offered by Scholarships360

Exclusive

In offering the “Scholar Dollars” Essay Scholarship for Black Students, we want to help offset the cost of attending college for Black students. Open to…Show More

In offering the “Scholar Dollars” Essay Scholarship for Black Students, we want to help offset the cost of attending college for Black students. Open to…Show More

In offering the “Scholar Dollars” Essay Scholarship for Black Students, we want to help offset the cost of attending college for Black students. Open to high school juniors and seniors (graduating class of 2024 and 2025) and undergraduate and graduate students enrolled during the 2024-25 academic year, this scholarship aims to lighten your financial worry and allow you to take fewer loans. Remember, scholarships are essentially “free money” that need not be paid back. This scholarship, specifically, aims to help out a Black student who is passionate about their higher education journey and actively looking for ways to fund it. Please note that applicants will be reviewed based on both the quality of their essay and quantity of scholarships applied for on the Scholarships360 platform. Scholarships360 users who are more active on the platform will be given higher consideration. We look forward to reading your application, and wish you much success on your academic journey! Show Less

1 award worth $500
Deadline Jan 31, 2025
Grade Level HS Upperclassmen, College & Graduate Students
Apply

$2,000 Niche “No Essay” College Scholarship

This scholarship has been verified by the scholarship providing organization.

Offered by Niche

Easy Application
1 award worth $2,000
Deadline Apr 30, 2024
Grade Level All Grade Levels

Offered by Niche

Easy Application

Easy scholarship from Niche open to all high school, college, and graduate students.

Easy scholarship from Niche open to all high school, college, and graduate students.

Easy scholarship from Niche open to all high school, college, and graduate students.

1 award worth $2,000
Deadline Apr 30, 2024
Grade Level All Grade Levels
Apply

“Making Waves” Scholarship for Women

This scholarship has been verified by the scholarship providing organization.

Offered by Scholarships360

Exclusive
1 award worth $500
Deadline Jan 31, 2025
Grade Level All Grade Levels

Offered by Scholarships360

Exclusive

Are you a woman in high school, college, or graduate school enrolled during the 2024-25 academic year? If so, let us help you! Our $500…Show More

Are you a woman in high school, college, or graduate school enrolled during the 2024-25 academic year? If so, let us help you! Our $500…Show More

Are you a woman in high school, college, or graduate school enrolled during the 2024-25 academic year? If so, let us help you! Our $500 “Making Waves” Scholarship for Women aims to help women cover the costs of pursuing their dreams. Whether that dream is starting a business, learning a foreign language, or attending college on the path to fulfilling your dream, the scholarship will cover those costs and make your journey a little easier. No matter your goals, we want to help out a woman who is passionate about their higher education journey and actively looking for ways to fund it. In order to apply, simply write an essay about how the $500 “Making Waves” Scholarship for Women will help you fulfill your dreams. Please note that applicants will be reviewed based on both the quality of their essay and quantity of scholarships applied for on the Scholarships360 platform. Scholarships360 users who are more active on the platform will be given higher consideration. We encourage you to apply and look forward to reading your essay. Good luck!Show Less

1 award worth $500
Deadline Jan 31, 2025
Grade Level All Grade Levels
Apply

“Tuition Solution” Scholarship for STEM Students

This scholarship has been verified by the scholarship providing organization.

Offered by Scholarships360

Exclusive
1 award worth $500
Deadline Jan 31, 2025
Grade Level HS Upperclassmen, College & Graduate Students

Offered by Scholarships360

Exclusive

Do you like figuring out solutions to difficult problems? Well, if you’re a current or aspiring STEM major, we have one for you! Our $500…Show More

Do you like figuring out solutions to difficult problems? Well, if you’re a current or aspiring STEM major, we have one for you! Our $500…Show More

Do you like figuring out solutions to difficult problems? Well, if you’re a current or aspiring STEM major, we have one for you! Our $500 “Tuition Solution” Scholarship is meant for high school juniors and seniors (graduating class of 2024 or 2025), as well as undergraduate and graduate students enrolled during the 2023-24 academic year who are looking for ways to fund their postsecondary education in STEM. In order to apply, you must write an essay about how your passion for STEM started and how the scholarship will help you fulfill your dreams. No matter which STEM field ignites your interest, we look forward to reading your essays. Please note that applicants will be reviewed based on both the quality of their essay and quantity of scholarships applied for on the Scholarships360 platform. Scholarships360 users who are more active on the platform will be given higher consideration. Apply today - it’s time to cell-e-brate you!Show Less

1 award worth $500
Deadline Jan 31, 2025
Grade Level HS Upperclassmen, College & Graduate Students
Apply

ScholarshipOwl $50,000 No Essay Scholarship

This scholarship has been verified by the scholarship providing organization.

Offered by ScholarshipOwl

Easy Application
50 awards worth $1,000
Deadline Apr 30, 2024
Grade Level All Grade Levels

Offered by ScholarshipOwl

Easy Application

Easy scholarship open to all US-based high school, college, and graduate students. Each month, 4 winners will be selected to earn $1,000 each. In December…Show More

Easy scholarship open to all US-based high school, college, and graduate students. Each month, 4 winners will be selected to earn $1,000 each. In December…Show More

Easy scholarship open to all US-based high school, college, and graduate students. Each month, 4 winners will be selected to earn $1,000 each. In December 2023, there will be 2 additional winners earning $1,000 each. Applicant must be a resident of any of the 50 United States, District of Columbia or US Territories except for Rhode Island and Michigan. Applicant also must be 16 years of age or older and either be enrolled now, or will be enrolled within three months of registration in the Scholarship Sweepstakes, in a qualified high school, college or university within the United States.Show Less

50 awards worth $1,000
Deadline Apr 30, 2024
Grade Level All Grade Levels
Apply

“A Helping Hand” Scholarship

This scholarship has been verified by the scholarship providing organization.

Offered by Scholarships360

Exclusive
1 award worth $500
Deadline Jan 31, 2025
Grade Level HS Upperclassmen, College & Graduate Students

Offered by Scholarships360

Exclusive

At Scholarships360, we know how hard it can be to pay off the hefty costs of a college tuition. Oftentimes, this is even more difficult…Show More

At Scholarships360, we know how hard it can be to pay off the hefty costs of a college tuition. Oftentimes, this is even more difficult…Show More

At Scholarships360, we know how hard it can be to pay off the hefty costs of a college tuition. Oftentimes, this is even more difficult for students coming from low-income backgrounds or for those who demonstrate financial need. This is where our “A Helping Hand” Scholarship comes in! We're offering a $500 scholarship to help out a low-income student who is passionate about their higher education journey and is actively looking for ways to fund it. This award is open to high school juniors and seniors (graduating class of 2024 and 2025), as well as undergraduate and graduate students enrolled during the 2024-25 academic year. In order to apply, students should submit an essay detailing how winning the scholarship would help you fulfill your dreams. Please note that applicants will be reviewed based on both the quality of their essay and quantity of scholarships applied for on the Scholarships360 platform. Scholarships360 users who are more active on the platform will be given higher consideration. We look forward to reading your application!Show Less

1 award worth $500
Deadline Jan 31, 2025
Grade Level HS Upperclassmen, College & Graduate Students
Apply

“Follow Your Own Path” Essay Scholarship

This scholarship has been verified by the scholarship providing organization.

Offered by Scholarships360

Exclusive
1 award worth $500
Deadline Jan 31, 2025
Grade Level College & Graduate Students

Offered by Scholarships360

Exclusive

At Scholarships360, our mission is to help students find and fund their postsecondary education. We know that students have a variety of educational and career…Show More

At Scholarships360, our mission is to help students find and fund their postsecondary education. We know that students have a variety of educational and career…Show More

At Scholarships360, our mission is to help students find and fund their postsecondary education. We know that students have a variety of educational and career interests and aspirations. That is why we are offering the “Follow Your Own Path” Essay Scholarship. This scholarship aims to support all current postsecondary students, regardless of the type of education they are pursuing. Thus, no matter your own unique educational path, we hope you apply for this $500 scholarship. In order to apply for the “Follow Your Own Path” Essay Scholarship, students must submit an essay about their career ambitions. Please note that applicants will be reviewed based on both the quality of their essay and quantity of scholarships applied for on the Scholarships360 platform. Scholarships360 users who are more active on the platform will be given higher consideration. We look forward to reading your application!Show Less

1 award worth $500
Deadline Jan 31, 2025
Grade Level College & Graduate Students
Apply

Sharing is Caring Scholarship

This scholarship has been verified by the scholarship providing organization.

Offered by Scholarships360

Exclusive
1 award worth $1,000
Deadline Jul 1, 2024
Grade Level All Grade Levels

Offered by Scholarships360

Exclusive

Did you know you can win a $1,000 scholarship just by sharing Scholarships360 with your friends? The Sharing is Caring Scholarship is open to all…Show More

Did you know you can win a $1,000 scholarship just by sharing Scholarships360 with your friends? The Sharing is Caring Scholarship is open to all…Show More

Did you know you can win a $1,000 scholarship just by sharing Scholarships360 with your friends? The Sharing is Caring Scholarship is open to all Scholarships360 users who refer their friends to Scholarships360. The more people you refer, the higher your chances of winning! To apply, just send your personal referral link to your friends. For every person who creates a Scholarships360 account using your personal referral link, you’ll gain an entry to the Sharing is Caring Scholarship. Get started by visiting the Scholarships360 Referral Center!Show Less

1 award worth $1,000
Deadline Jul 1, 2024
Grade Level All Grade Levels
Apply

“Moving Mountains” Scholarship for Hispanic Students

This scholarship has been verified by the scholarship providing organization.

Offered by Scholarships360

Exclusive
1 award worth $500
Deadline Jan 31, 2025
Grade Level HS Upperclassmen, College & Graduate Students

Offered by Scholarships360

Exclusive

This scholarship is open to Hispanic/Latino high school juniors and seniors, college, and graduate students who have moved mountains in their life. To move mountains…Show More

This scholarship is open to Hispanic/Latino high school juniors and seniors, college, and graduate students who have moved mountains in their life. To move mountains…Show More

This scholarship is open to Hispanic/Latino high school juniors and seniors, college, and graduate students who have moved mountains in their life. To move mountains means to achieve something incredibly difficult. It means overcoming obstacles, persevering in the face of adversity, and achieving success against all the odds. Whether it’s passing a difficult class, completing a rigorous project, or excelling in sports, we all have our own way of moving mountains. We want to know about yours. See the “Application Information” section below for details regarding the essay prompt. Please note that applicants will be reviewed based on both the quality of their essay and quantity of scholarships applied for on the Scholarships360 platform. Scholarships360 users who are more active on the platform will be given higher consideration. We look forward to reading your application!Show Less

1 award worth $500
Deadline Jan 31, 2025
Grade Level HS Upperclassmen, College & Graduate Students
Apply

“Creativity Takes Courage” Scholarship for Art Students

This scholarship has been verified by the scholarship providing organization.

Offered by Scholarships360

Exclusive
1 award worth $500
Deadline Jan 31, 2025
Grade Level HS Upperclassmen, College & Graduate Students

Offered by Scholarships360

Exclusive

This award is open to students studying any form of visual and/or performing arts who write an essay expressing their views on creativity and courage.…Show More

This award is open to students studying any form of visual and/or performing arts who write an essay expressing their views on creativity and courage.…Show More

This award is open to students studying any form of visual and/or performing arts who write an essay expressing their views on creativity and courage. The French artist Henri Matisse once said, “another word for creativity is courage.” Artists can be loved and appreciated for their work, but they also have the potential to be criticized and rejected. Releasing art into the world involves overcoming fear and self-doubt. Even the most successful artists grapple with questions like “am I good enough?” or “will people like this?” If you’re a creative student who has ever struggled with these questions, we encourage you to apply for this scholarship! See the “Application Information” section below for details regarding the essay prompt. Please note that applicants will be reviewed based on both the quality of their essay and quantity of scholarships applied for on the Scholarships360 platform. Scholarships360 users who are more active on the platform will be given higher consideration. We look forward to reading your application! Show Less

1 award worth $500
Deadline Jan 31, 2025
Grade Level HS Upperclassmen, College & Graduate Students
Apply
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Top 10 overall grad school scholarships

We pick our grad school scholarships by finding trustworthy organizations who offer big rewards and have been offering their scholarships for a long period of time. Here are our editors’ picks for the top 10 grad school scholarships overall:

Program-specific graduate school scholarships

If you are pursuing a specific graduate program, you can check out these program-specific scholarship guides:

How to win scholarships for graduate students

As someone who has already gone through the process of earning your undergraduate degree, you probably have some experience with applying for scholarships. However, students applying for graduate scholarships would do well to emphasize a few different points to help ensure successful applications.

Graduate students typically have a more specific idea of their future career goals than undergraduate students. Make sure to emphasize this in your application and include all the particular things you hope to accomplish. If you have gained work experience between undergraduate and graduate school, frame your pursuits in this context. The more you demonstrate that you are working towards the plans you hope to further with your graduate degree, the more impactful your applications will be.

Writing strong applications

While your circumstances may have changed since undergraduate, the principles of writing a strong essay haven’t! We have a whole host of guides for writing strong scholarship essays and applications. That includes writing 250 word essays, 500 word essays, writing essays about yourself, or starting or finishing your essays. We also have a guide on writing a winning scholarship essay and can help you with finding local scholarships.

Graduate school funding sources

Students will generally pay for graduate school using a few different funding sources. The most common sources are private scholarships, need-based financial aid and grants, and university-specific scholarships.

Private graduate school scholarships

There some great private organizations that offer scholarships for students pursuing their masters or doctoral degrees! These scholarships support graduate students of all stripes including medical school students, law school students, business school students, masters students, and doctoral students!

Need-based financial aid for grad school

Need-based financial aid is another important way to pay for graduate school. For graduate school, need-based aid can include both grants (that don’t need to be repaid) and student loans (that do need to be repaid).

For need-based graduate school financial aid, students must submit the Free Application for Federal Student Aid or FAFSA. This allows students to be considered for both need-based grants and federal student loans. Some colleges may also require additional forms, so always check with your specific graduate program for more details about their financial aid process.

Many colleges may also require students to submit the CSS Profile, which is a financial aid application that is hosted by the College Board. The CSS Profile is how students can access institutional financial aid from the universities.

University-specific merit scholarships

Many graduate schools will also offer university-specific scholarship opportunities. You should check with the graduate programs that you are applying for for more information about scholarship opportunities that you may be eligible for.

Some graduate students may qualify for fellowships or assistantships that allow them to gain valuable experience and also receive funding to pay for grad school.

Tips for paying for graduate school

Paying for graduate school has a few key differences from paying for undergraduate. Here are some tips to help you take advantage of every form of financial aid out there:

Look for scholarships and fellowships at your school

Check out your school’s website and reach out to the financial aid office to learn about scholarships and fellowships. They may refer you to institutional opportunities, or, since they are experts in the field, they may know about specific opportunities that suit your interests or demographics. You can’t go wrong by reaching out to the financial aid office for advice.

Also see: How to win local scholarships

Apply for scholarships early and often

Remember, it’s never too early or late to apply for scholarships. Each opportunity has a different deadline, so you should be looking for opportunities regularly. Our scholarship finder is a great way to keep up with the latest opportunities. We will match you with vetted scholarships that automatically update as deadlines pass and new scholarships open.

Proofread your application essays!

Essays are one of the best ways to stand out from the crowd in a scholarship application! Check out our guides to writing about yourself, writing a 250 word essay, and writing a 500 word essay. We also have a guide to writing a winning scholarship essay. Even if you are a confident writer, it’s a good idea to check out these guides. Scholarship essays are written with a different intent than the essays you write in school.

Check with your employer about tuition reimbursement

An increasing number of employers now offer tuition reimbursement. With tuition reimbursement, your employer will help pay for your continued education. Since employers generally prefer hiring from within instead of hiring new employees, this works out for both employer and employee.

Some employers only offer opportunities to pursue education to advance your career at their company. But others, such as Starbucks, Chipotle, or Amazon, allow you to pursue different fields of education that you can use to get hired elsewhere.

Consider inexpensive online options

Online educational programs are becoming increasingly popular, especially after the pandemic. You can find a lot of reputable online graduate programs through Coursera. Schools offer a wide breadth of programs through Coursera, including iMBAs. There are also many scholarships available specifically for online students.

Consider certificate programs as an alternative

For some students, graduate school might not be a financial option at the moment. But there are still ways to advance your career through further education. College alternatives, such as certificate programs and coding bootcamps, can raise your earning potential with significantly less time and financial commitment.

Investigate graduate assistantships

Graduate assistantships, including teaching and research assistantships, are great opportunities to help pay for college while gaining firsthand experience in your field of study. As an added bonus, they help you to forge relationships with professors and other accomplished professionals in the field. Helping to teach undergraduate courses can help complement your graduate studies and decrease your loan debt!

Frequently asked questions about graduate school scholarships

Is graduate school worth it?

Because of the cost, students who are considering graduate school need to give it serious thought before making the commitment. Primarily, students should ask themselves: “is graduate school necessary or worth it for me?”

Assessing return on investment (ROI) is an extremely important part of the grad school search and selection process. In some cases, it is better for students to go to the more expensive grad school if the payoff is higher. Employment statistics and average starting salaries are important metrics to look at when comparing different masters and doctoral programs. But make sure not to take out more in student loans than you can repay.

As far as the necessity of graduate school, you should figure out whether your aspirations require it. If you want to become a doctor, lawyer, or professor, then yes, graduate school will be required. If your aspirations are unclear or you are interested in a field that does not absolutely require a master’s degree or doctoral degree, then you may want to hold off on grad school. For many students, work experience will be more valuable than a graduate degree.

How do I get a full ride to grad school?

There are several different routes to get a full ride to grad school. Some students will work a job for a few years after they get their bachelor’s degree. Their job may offer them tuition reimbursement for grad school, which could end up being a full ride. Since employers generally prefer promoting from within rather than hiring from outside, this can be a mutually beneficial option.

Another way to get a full ride to grad school is through graduate assistantships. These typically do not offer a full ride, but some students with especially impressive accomplishments may receive one. You can also look for merit scholarships either at a private level or an institutional level. Make sure to check out the opportunities that your potential university may offer for full rides.

Does FAFSA pay for grad school?

You will fill out the FAFSA to apply for financial aid in grad school. Your school will use this information to determine your need-based aid. However, the FAFSA will not qualify you for the same federal aid opportunities that it did in undergraduate. Grad students cannot receive Pell Grants, for instance. However, they can take out federal loans.

Can I get scholarships for a master’s program?

You can definitely get scholarships for a master’s program! There are many different ways to go about finding opportunities. You can start by perusing our lists of scholarships by major. Many specialized private scholarships are open to undergraduate and graduate students.

Another option is to look for scholarships from your institution. You can find out about these on your institution’s website and by reaching out to their financial aid office. They may offer scholarships specifically for students who take on graduate assistantships.

When can I start applying for graduate school scholarships?

It’s never too early to apply for graduate school scholarships! If you are planning on going straight from undergrad to a graduate program, you should start applying at the beginning of your senior year. Each scholarship has its own deadline, so in order to maximize your potential opportunities, it’s best to start early and keep an eye on new opportunities as they arise.

You can use our scholarship search tool to keep your finger on the pulse of new scholarship opportunities. We will custom-match you with vetted scholarship opportunities which will automatically update as new deadlines approach.

Do graduate students get Pell Grants?

Graduate students do not get Pell Grants. However, they should still out the FAFSA to apply for institutional need-based aid. They are also still eligible for federal student loans. To compensate for the lack of Pell Grants, it’s a good idea to pursue other financial aid opportunities such as graduate assistantships and fellowships.

Related: Grad school financial aid options

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