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Indiana University Bloomington

Financial Support for Your Graduate Education

Don't overlook the possibility of going to graduate school because you are afraid of student loan debt. Financial support for graduate school may come in the form of scholarships, grants, loans, or teaching or research assistantships. The links below will help you get started. Remember to ask for information about financial support when you contact any graduate program!

Application Fee Waiver Programs: If you're currently receiving need based financial aid, you may qualify for the application fee waiver program that many institutions have. You should contact the admissions office at the institutions to which you're applying to find out what you have to do. Usually, you will need a letter from your undergraduate financial aid office.

Scholarships & Grants: To explore external scholarships worth billions of dollars, click here and then on the "Scholarship Search Engines" tab to access free scholarship search sites.

Loan Forgiveness Programs (LFP): LFPs are designed to encourage students to pursue degrees and employment in specific fields. These programs forgive part or all of your educational loan debt if you in turn fulfill certain work or volunteer-related requirements for a period of time after you earn your degree.

  • National Health Service Corps (NHSC) Loan Repayment Program (LRP) offers primary care medical, dental, and mental and behavioral health providers the opportunity to have their student loans repaid for serving communities in need. NHSC Scholars are required to work at sites in federally designated Health Professional Shortage Areas (HPSAs) of greatest need. Behavioral health provider licenses currently eligible include Health Service Psychologist (HSP), Licensed Clinical Social Worker (LCSW), Psychiatric Nurse Specialist (PNS), Marriage & Family Therapist (MFT), and Licensed Professional Counselor (LPC).

  • Public Service Loan Forgiveness is a program for federal student loan borrowers (see for example Federal Direct Student Loans) who work in certain kinds of jobs. The PSLF program will forgive remaining debt after 10 years of eligible employment and qualifying loan payments. (If you qualify for the PSLF program, you can use Income-Based Repayment option described below to keep the size of your monthly payments manageable during the 10 years you repay your loans).

  • Income-Based Repayment is a repayment option for federal student loans that has been available since 2009. It can help borrowers keep their loan payments affordable with payment caps based on their income and family size. For most eligible borrowers, IBR loan payments will be less than 10% of their income - and even smaller for borrowers with low earnings. IBR will also forgive remaining debt, if any, after 25 years of qualifying payments.

  • The Indiana Child Welfare Education and Training Partnership will help Division of Child Services employees pay tuition for a Masters in Social Work degree -- once you have the MSW degree you can begin working toward an LCSW license to be employed as a counselor.

Explore Professional Society Websites for Scholarships and Loan Forgiveness Programs: Explore both national and state organizations!

  • The American Occupational Therapy Association (AOTA), for example, has succeeded in getting occupational therapy recognized as a profession of national need making occupational therapists who work with children, adolescents, and veterans eligible for additional loan forgiveness.

  • The Ohio School Psychologists Association, for example, offers scholarships to graduate students.

Graduating seniors who have excelled in their undergraduate studies may want to consider:

  • If you're applying to research-oriented doctoral programs, check out the American Psychological Association's Science Student Council's Funding & Grants page. Ask the graduate programs to which you're applying whether they actively encourage or require their graduate students to apply for research grants.

  • The Fulbright Program is the largest international exchange program offering opportunities for U.S.students, scholars, and professionals to undertake international graduate study, advanced research, or teaching. A Fulbright might be in your future if you will soon hold a B.S./B.A. degree; are a master's or doctoral degree candidate; or are a young professional or artist, and are thinking of studying, teaching or conducting research abroad. Contact the IUB Fulbright Program Advisor with your questions!

  • Graduating seniors who are preparing to attend graduate school overseas should look into Marshall, Mitchell, Churchill, Rhodes and similar scholar programs. See the Graduate Awards Quicklist and Post Baccalaureate / Graduate Students opportunities posted by the Office for the Vice President for International Affairs.

Return to Graduate School: An Overview