Each year a number of scholarships, financial assistances, grants and study bursaries are provided for students around the globe to fund their studies and degrees. International organizations such as the UN, OSCE, EU and ASEAN offer various opportunities which can be an excellent starting point for aspiring students, young professionals and future leaders.
Both European and non-european students are eligible to apply and take advantage of tuition-free programs focused on various fields of study at different reputable Universities around the world. Some are specific to the level of study (training courses, bachelor, master’s, PhD) while others focus on nationality or the field of study.
In this article we compiled the top 10 scholarships offered by UN, OSCE, EU, ASEAN and other international organizations.
Formerly known as the PhD Internship Programme, Visiting PhD Fellowship offers a possibility to develop their research within UN international research institute for prospective doctoral students. Admitted fellows are given a chance to collaborate with researchers from other Universities in the area of common interest and to spend three consecutive months at UNU-WIDER. During their time in Helsinki, fellows prepare research papers which can also be published in the WIDER Working Paper Series. In order to be admitted, applicants must be enrolled in a PhD programme and must show the ability to conduct research. Successful candidates are offered financial assistance which includes travel costs, medical insurance and a monthly stipend of EUR 1,600 to cover living expenses in Helsinki during the period of the fellowship.
The United Nations University (UNU) is a postgraduate teaching organization consisting of the UNU Centre, multiple institutions and programmes that collaborate with top universities and research institutes in UN Member States. There are various UN scholarships offered to master and doctoral level. Each UNU programme has a unique tuition scheme and interested applicants are advised to follow the links associated with the specific programme available on the official websites. Financial support in the form of tuition waivers and scholarships is offered to students with outstanding academic records. Interested applicants should make a request to the admission office during the application period, since there are a limited number of scholarships.
UNESCO and L’Oréal Corporate Foundation offer fellowships to young female researchers who are engaged in combating current global challenges through their work. The aim of the program is to promote and encourage women by providing them resources and knowledge in order to promote their scientific career. Each year the L’Oréal – UNESCO partnership represent 53 national and regional fellowships programs that cover 117 countries. Interested applicants can find more information on the official website.
Each year the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE) and United Nations Office for Disarmament Affairs (UNODA) organizes a training course for young professionals providing orientation and knowledge regarding conflict prevention, arms control, disarmament and non-proliferation. Women are especially encouraged to apply, since the training focuses in particular on women’s participation in policymaking in this area. There are 100 scholarships available for interested young professionals from OSCE participating countries and partners for co-operation. Participation to the in-person training is reserved for women. For more information regarding the deadlines and the application process visit the OSCE website.
Erasmus Mundus Joint Master Degree (EMJMD) is an international study programme delivered in collaboration with the international consortium of higher educational institutions. After successful completion of the program, students will obtain either a joint degree or multiple degrees. EMJMD requires from a student to obtain his/her studies in at least two of the programme countries, while part of the studies can also take place in partner countries if a partner-country institution is involved (for the list of institutions visit the official website). This is a degree programme of 60, 90 or 120 ECTS credits, depending on the duration – from a minimum of 12 months, to a maximum of 24 months. Students at Master’s level holding a first higher educational degree worldwide are welcome to apply. EMJMD offers EU-funded scholarships to the best candidates. To receive Erasmus+ financial support the candidate must first be admitted to the course of the organizing consortium and then be selected for an EMJMD scholarship.
Directorate General is offering study bursaries for students interested in becoming conference interpreters. Nationals of EU Member states and ones of the candidate countries (Albania, North Macedonia, Montenegro, Serbia or Turkey) are welcome to apply. The bursary will amount to the equivalent of the tuition fee for the academic year 2019-2020, with a ceiling amount of EUR 2.400, and will consist of one single payment. Eligible candidates are the ones who already have a university degree or equivalent qualification or are in the final year of a course that leads to such qualification. There are exceptions from this terms which could be found within the official call available at the European Commission website. When granting study bursaries, preference will be given to applicants offering a language combination which is most suited to DG Interpretation’s current and foreseeable needs. Bursaries Evaluation Committee will make the final decision on eligible candidates during their meeting around the end of October 2019.
ASEAN scholarships are provided for outstanding students of ASEAN countries to study in Singapore, Brunei Cambodia, Indonesia, Lao P.D.R, Malaysia, Thailand, Myanmar, The Philippines and Vietnam. Prospective students will be given a chance to develop their academic knowledge, broaden their horizons in one of these Universities and most importantly develop leadership, communication and life skills. The eligibility criteria for the scholarships differ from country to country, so interested applicants should refer to the ASEAN Scholarships website for more details. Usually, the selection process consists of selection test and those who perform well will be invited to the final step – an interview. Successful candidates will then be awarded the scholarship. There is an option to be notified immediately when the relevant scholarship is open.
Canada – ASEAN SEED program offers scholarships and educational exchanges with an aim to reduce poverty in the developing ASEAN countries and most importantly to achieve the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. In particular, the program addresses SDG Goal 5 – achieve gender equality and empower all women and girls and Goal 13 – take urgent action to combat climate change and its impacts. SEED scholarships are enabled through institutional cooperation and collaboration agreements between Canadian and ASEAN institutions. In order to apply, students must be registered as full-time students in their home institution at the time of application and during the entire duration of the study or research in Canada. Interested Southeast Asian candidates should contact their home institution to express their interest in the scholarship, to find out if there is an existing institutional collaboration with Canadian institution and to request further information about the application process and specific selection criteria.
The World Bank Scholarships Program aims at developing dynamic approaches to capacity development and promoting economic development through investing in education. The program started in 1982 and since then it trained over 6,000 experienced development professionals coming from different countries worldwide. At the moment, the World Bank Scholarships Program offers two sources of funding for graduate studies in development-related fields for mid-career professionals and researchers: Joint Japan/World Bank Graduate Scholarship Program (JJWBGSP) and Robert S. McNamara Fellowships Program (RSMFP). Details for eligibility criteria can be found within each call for applications. Generally speaking, interested applicants must be a national of a World Bank member developing country, not hold dual citizenship of any developed country, be in a good health and hold a Bachelor’s (or equivalent) degree earned at least 3 years prior to the Application Deadline date.
Fisheries Training Programme in Iceland is offered by United Nations University each year. This is a postgraduate 6-month training course related to the fisheries sector with the aim of strengthening FTP fellows to apply knowledge in their organizations or home countries. The programme covers lectures, site visits and various assignments, while at the end of the training fellows are expected to conduct a research related to their work at home, through collaboration with a supervisor. Scholarships are provided for former UNU-FTP fellows admitted to any Icelandic university with graduate studies in fisheries.