Most business schools suggest that students seek out scholarships for assistance in financing an MBA. Many business schools, such as Wharton, Harvard and the Hass School of Business at UC Berkeley provide lists of suggested scholarships on their webpages. Not only are school-specific scholarships listed, but scholarships from outside sources are listed as well.
Many scholarships target specific populations such as women, minorities, international, and military veterans. There are also scholarships based on work background, in fields ranging from finance to farmworking. There are also scholarships designed specifically for graduates of specific schools such as Swarthmore and Bowdoin. Other possible sources of MBA funding include your country of citizenship, religious organizations, athletics, veterans groups, ethnic groups, unions, employers and charitable foundations. Scholarship search engines such as FastWeb and Scholarships.com can also help you find scholarships.
You should expect to apply for loans since most students end up relying on loans to pay for part of their education. If you are a US citizen or permanent resident looking for help in financing an MBA, you should fill out a Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) as soon you've prepared your income tax return. The types of federal loans you qualify for depend on what school you're applying to. Since federal student loans are not processed through a bank, you don't have to apply for a bank loan in order to get a federal student loan.
You should also look into private lending institutions. Here are two of the most respected educational lending institutions:
- Citibank's CitiAssist Graduate Loan Program - CitiBank's student loan division provides standard loans to U.S. citizens and international students looking to study in the US. Citibank also works with specific schools, such as Wharton, to provide tailored loan packages to their students.
- Sallie Mae - Availble only to US students, Sallie Mae runs a private MBA loan program.
Many schools offer their own fellowships to incoming students to help them with financing an MBA. Fellowships are usually done in conjunction with a corporation or foundation. Qualifications and requirements vary by school and are listed on the individual webpages of each institution. The level of funding can also vary. There are also outside fellowships available that aren't specific to a particular school.