Every year, every month, in fact maybe each day, ambitious students cross the borders of their countries of birth to pursue an education.
The students who apply to study aboard are pushed by the sheer desire to get the best education in dream universities. It is was their hope to enrol within a faculty that promises to set them into a great career path.
In most cases, the students moving to university abroad are beneficiaries of the various scholarship opportunities available today.
The scholarships awarded to students abroad may be given by individual university, a faculty, a vice chancellor, corporates or the respective governments ,whichever may be the case. For more on what mistakes to avoid when applying for studies abroad, please check out more details here.
It may not be so intriguing to talk about the lucky students who get scholarship because for them, life abroad is well cut out. Scholarship students get an opportunity to invest much of their time in research and knowledge exchange without having to worry about finances or upkeep.
On the other hand, the students who do not get scholarships but still decide to venture abroad in the hope of getting ways to keep afloat is a special group. It is a basketful of struggles to meet financial needs while balancing it with the rigor of academics, a daunting task.
Admission to university abroad without a scholarship
As a procedure, universities abroad conduct admissions and scholarship processes either separately or simultaneously. It means that while someone may qualify and get admitted to a particular master or PhD programme, they may not be lucky to get a scholarship.
The respective university that has offered you an admission will go ahead and notify you of the offer. This offer is accompanied by a letter showing that you have been admitted to this programme but have to pay the tuition fees and or show your ability to support yourself during the period of study.
In most cases, students who get such admissions but miss scholarship funding will just drop off the ambition to study abroad. Then there is daredevil, committed and adventurous lot who go ahead and solicit the first semester tuition fees and a little for upkeep. They then buy a flight ticket and go.
Is studying abroad without having a scholarship a good idea?
Nobody decide to go back to the education system, especially higher education without a particular push for it. Some people may want to climb the career ladder, get new knowledge and skill set that match the current demands or something like that.
So by the time of deciding to make an application for a bachelors, masters or PhD degree, there is already a reason for doing it. If the motivation to get the extra degree is high enough and one is ready to test how life can be abroad without any sure tuition funding, then it is a worthy experiment.
There are various ways that students from poor countries who have a commitment to get education from prestigious universities in the west can use to finance their studies.
Most universities and governments abroad now understand that immigrant students have some skills, knowledge and ability to work while studying. They call it jobbing but it really contributes immensely to supporting students who do not have scholarships or even those that have funding but still need extra coins in the pocket.
The key thing for someone who moves abroad to study without scholarship is to first assess whether they are really likely to get something to do there and how much they may raise in salaries. It may be disappointing to be overambitious only to realize that life is so unbearable abroad.
Challenges studying overseas without scholarships
Talk to anyone who has studies abroad but not getting anu form of scholarships whatsoever. Their stories is a mouthful. Actually, by talking about students without scholarships, it means those do not also expect any money from friends, parents or relatives. They are literally on their own with their big dreams.
Such students are resilient, forward looking and less likely to have any free time for indulging in unnecessary lifestyle. But as a student, having to divide attention and literally be busy either studying or looking for money is a real deal. It just denies one the time to interact with colleague students or get some leisure.
To a student who has to pay tuition fees at a university abroad, every time is a busy time. One thing is that tuition fees for foreign students is always high. It means that whatever a local student would pay can either be doubled or tripled for an international student. That is a crazy one but it is the reality check.
In most universities abroad, especially in Europe, education is free for locals and those from specific regions such as EU, EEA and Switzerland. What this means is that at any time, you are likely to end up in a class where every other student does not pay tuition fees. None of the fellow students will understand your situation at all.
Another thing is that aside from the free tuition fees, students coming from EU or EEA studying in a country like Denmark get government grant provided that they meet certain requirments. For the Danes, it is a guarantee to get SU.
Imagine when you are out there struggling to make ends meet, fending for upkeep and tuition fees at the same time, your colleagues get grant in the excess of $947,18 per month in addition to not paying fees. You will be in two different worlds yet the expectation is that you meet the course requirements.
Should someone consider studying abroad without a scholarship?
It may be a bad idea to spot on say that studying abroad without a scholarship is a no go zone but again it will be naïve to promote it wholesome. There are a few things to highlight which may be helpful to someone having the idea to move abroad as a student.
There are a couple of things that happen when you rely on working abroad to pay tuition fees and et upkeep. One, your time to study is greatly strained, especially group work and research. Two, you will not find an opportunity to network properly socialize with fellow students. Three, it will be a tall order to consider taking internships as part of your studies. Most of the internships in countries where grants are given to students who also do not pay fees, are unpaid.
A day for a typical tuition fee paying student abroad is packed and eventful. They have to juggle between lecture attendance, part time job, library reading, laboratory research and still have some time for chit chat with friends. Isn’t that too much for a person? I guess so.
Going about studying abroad without a scholarship funding
While whatever we mention here may not be relevant to everybody, it could be helpful to at least take off some burden off the shoulder of a foreign student thinking of studying abroad without a scholarship.
It is a good idea to at least make connections with a family or individual who can host you during the period of study. There could be families out there who may open their arms to welcome you into their families. With this, the worry of rent and possible upkeep is sorted. You will only need to focus on raising tuition fees.
If you are living a distance from the university, get a bicycle, scooter or make a friend with a colleague student who can pick and drop you at home. This saves you bus fare. Smart? Yes very smart and thoughtful.
Once at the university, try to be super active in class, impress the professors and be ready to let them know that you are tuition fees paying. Pass all your examinations and prepare well to challenge them during the lectures. They may just agree within the faculty to allow you study without paying a dime for it.
As much as you may not have gotten a scholarship in the first instance, keep checking announcement for funding. A couple of new announcements for even already admitted students keep coming up.
If you put up a compelling application for scholarship and attach transcripts with good grades and maybe an recommendation by a faculty member, you may