Traveling and volunteering abroad can be costly. However, there are many scholarships, grants, and financial aid opportunities available that you can apply for to help alleviate some, if not all, of the costs. Check out the opportunities listed below and click on the yellow text to be directed to the scholarship’s specific website.

General Volunteer Abroad Scholarships and Grants


IVHQ offers four Volunteer Abroad Scholarships every year that includes a sponsored two-week IVHQ volunteer program, a $1,000 travel voucher from STA Travel, and a World Nomads travel insurance package. These scholarships include IVHQ’s Teach and Volunteer Abroad Scholarship, Medical Volunteer Abroad Scholarship, Travel Blogger Scholarship, and Volunteer of the Year Scholarship.

To Apply:


Since 2007, Travelocity has offered volunteer travelers $5,000 grants through their Travel for Good program. This voluntourism grant allows travelers to serve abroad with one of Travelocity’s trusted partners—currently the American Hiking Society, Cross-Cultural Solutions, the Earthwatch Institute, and GlobeAware—for a few days to a few months. The funds cover project and transportation costs, with grants offered to four winners each year.

To Apply:


Go Overseas offers two $500 scholarships for volunteers to travel abroad in the spring and fall each year—travelers are invited to volunteer with any organization of their choosing, or even craft a custom trip with a local NGO that inspires them. The award is (most often) distributed directly to the volunteer organization itself, which ensures that the funds are used entirely for the project.

To Apply:


The Samuel Huntington Public Service Award provides a stipend of $15,000 for a graduating college senior to volunteer for one year, either alone or with an established organization (charitable, religious, education, governmental, or other public service), anywhere in the world. The group guarantees one award each year but often have two or three winners. Applicants must submit a proposal by mid January that encompasses any activity that furthers the public good.

To Apply:


Sara’s Wish Foundation scholarships are awarded to young American women who exhibit qualities of leadership, service, and adventure. Formed to honor the memory of college student Sara Christie Schewe, who was killed in a bus crash in India during a semester abroad, the scholarship defrays the costs associated with traveling to all areas of the globe. Recipients perform public services, contributing to the welfare of the world. Applications are available online October 1 through March 1, and typical awards are $1,500—$2,000.

To Apply:


The Rotary Foundation offers multiple grants and fundraising support for a variety of projects, scholarships, and training for Rotarians around the world. Rotary clubs and districts offer their own scholarships as well, funded with district grants. Applicants may request assistance for any form of global study. Packaged grant scholarships also are available from Rotary and its partners for scholars in the fields of nursing and water and sanitation.

To Apply:


Rustic Pathways offers more than 100 scholarships for student travelers and educators each year. Their Service Scholarship is a competitive scholarship available to first-time Rustic travelers in need of financial aid to cover all or part of their program fee. If you’re traveling on a gap year, check out Rustic Pathways’ Gap Year Scholarship, which is open to students who are at least 17 years old and have either fulfilled all graduation requirements, or have graduated by the time their gap year begins. This scholarship is applicable to one semester of travel.If you’re the parent of a student traveler, and you’re a full-time employee (teacher, administrator, coach, or other staff) of an educational institution, check out Rustic Pathways’ Teacher Appreciation Program, which offers discounts of up to 30% on almost all of this organization’s student summer programs.

To Apply:

Skills and Degree-based Volunteer Abroad Scholarships and Grants

Build Abroad Travel Scholarship

Founded in 2010, Build Abroad has a mission of building and repairing communities worldwide through socially responsible construction volunteering, with projects focusing on homes, schools, and disaster relief. This organization offers one travel scholarship each year to a student or recent graduate in architecture, civil engineering, interior design, or a related field. This award covers a one-week stay at any of Build Abroad’s five locations in Latin America or Asia, and includes airport pickup, pre-departure support, housing, two meals per day, in-country support, an organized construction volunteering project, and access to a volunteer center with free wifi.

To Apply:


Agricultural Cooperative Development International and Volunteers in Overseas Cooperative Assistance (ACDI/VOCA) seeks expert volunteers to support its international development activities in business, agriculture, banking and financial services, marketing, cooperative and association development, food processing, and community development. Current or recent graduate students in the areas of business, agriculture, and international studies are eligible to participate throughout Africa, Middle East, Asia and Latin America. Assignments usually last from two to four weeks, and volunteers contribute their time and expertise while ACDI/VOCA pays for all assignment-related expenses. These include round-trip coach airfare, passport, visas, lodging, meals and incidentals, immunizations, supplemental health insurance, and even emergency medical evacuation if required.

To Apply:


The Omprakash Ambassador Travel Grant pays for travel and living expenses for entrepreneurial individuals who want to volunteer abroad within its international network of grassroots health, education, and environmental partner organizations. Omprakash Ambassadors also are enrolled in Omprakash EdGE (Education through Global Engagement), the group’s online curriculum that explores ethics, economics and power dynamics that underlie cross-cultural volunteering and international aid. Travel Grant applications are open to all, regardless of age or nationality, and reviewed seasonally.

To Apply:

Study Abroad Scholarships And Grants For College Students Only


The U.S. Department of State offers intensive summer language institutes in 13 foreign languages in order to expand the number of Americans studying and mastering critical foreign languages. The CLS Program supports beginning, intermediate, and advanced level study in Azerbaijani, Bangla/Bengali, Hindi, Indonesian, Korean, Punjabi, Turkish and Urdu. Advanced beginning and intermediate level study is available in Arabic and Persian, while intermediate to advanced level programs are available in Chinese, Japanese, and Russian. Awards cover round-trip travel between the student’s home city and program location, a mandatory Washington, D.C. pre-departure orientation, applicable visa fees, room, board, group-based intensive language instruction, program-sponsored travel within country, and all entrance fees for CLS Program cultural enhancement activities. Applicants must be U.S. citizens enrolled in a U.S. degree-granting program at the undergraduate or graduate level.

To Apply:


The founders of Tortuga Backpacks, Fred and Jeremy, experienced the transformative power of travel on a backpacking trip to Eastern Europe. Frustrated by their luggage options, they started their own backpack company. Now they want to give college students the same opportunity they had.The Tortuga Backpacks Study Abroad Scholarship is awarded biannually to students interested in exploring the world. The scholarship is for $1,000 towards any study abroad program.

To Apply:


The Boren scholarship, a National Security Education Program award, is for students interested in learning a foreign language, studying abroad, and adding an international element to their education. This scholarship provides undergraduates with up to $20,000 for an academic year’s study abroad, while the Boren Fellowship provides graduates up to $30,000 for language study and international research in the study of world regions critical to U.S. interests, including Africa, Asia, Central and Eastern Europe, Eurasia, Latin America and the Caribbean, and the Middle East.

To Apply:


Freeman Awards for Study in Asia (Freeman-ASIA) scholarships benefit U.S. undergraduates with financial aid providing them with funds to study abroad in East or Southeast Asia. Need-based funding assists recipients with study-abroad program costs and related expenses, including airfare, basic living costs, local transportation and books. Awards range from $3,000 for a summer program, $5,000 for a semester or quarter program, to $7,000 for an academic year program.

To Apply:


The Gilman International Scholarship Program aims to diversify U.S. undergraduate students who study abroad and the countries and regions where they go by providing awards of up to $5,000 for one academic year. The program serves underrepresented students with high financial need, and all applicants must be recipients of a Federal Pell Grant

To Apply:


The National Security Education Program encourages students to internationalize their educational resumes by offering U.S. undergraduates scholarship opportunities to study abroad. Its goal is to help equip students with language skills and cultural understanding resulting in successful careers—the application deadline is in January

To Apply:


SIT Study Abroad supports international opportunities for students through its scholarship and grant programs. Many SIT scholarships and grants are available for both terms of study: semester and summer. Individual awards generally range from $500 to $5,000. Here is a list of just a few SIT Scholarships: The Compton Fund: For students enrolled in SIT programs with environmental, post-conflict transformation, or sustainable development themes.; SIT Engineering Scholarship: For students enrolled in undergraduate engineering programs who have demonstrated financial need.; The Experiment in International Living (EIL) Alumni Study Abroad Scholarship: To recognize and support alumni of EIL summer high school programs.; HBCU Scholarships: For students enrolled at Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs).

To Apply:


International Education Financial Aid (IEFA) is a clearinghouse for information on college scholarship, financial aid, and grants for all students wishing to study abroad. IEFA’s mission is to promote international education through the development and publication of a comprehensive database.

To Apply:


STA has teamed up with Lonely Planet and to break down study abroad barriers for college students and help you achieve their goals. The grand prize includes a $2,000 flight voucher, a $3,000 scholarship and a copy of the Lonely Planet Guide to studying abroad. Entries are due by September 25.

To Apply: STA & Go Abroad Scholarship Link

Questions? Comments? Email the Global Citizens Program Manager at