International Costs and Finances

Need-Based Aid for International Students

Vanderbilt University offers need-based scholarships to a limited number of international undergraduate applicants. If you indicate on your application for admission that you are seeking need-based assistance, the admission decision will be made on a need-aware basis. Applications from international citizens who apply for need-based assistance will be reviewed among all international applicants seeking need-based assistance, and will be chosen based on an evaluation of academic qualities, leadership and community engagement, financial need, and availability of resources.

In order to apply for need-based scholarships, you must submit the College Scholarship Service (CSS) Profile or the ISFAA (International Student Financial Aid Application).

For financial aid purposes, you are considered an international student if you do not meet the eligibility criteria to receive federal student financial assistance. To qualify for federal assistance, a student must be a United States citizen or eligible non-citizen. (Learn more about how these classifications are defined.)

U.S. citizens and eligible non-citizens living abroad are eligible to receive need-based scholarships. For these students, Vanderbilt is proud to offer need-blind admission and meet 100 percent of each student’s demonstrated financial need with generous aid packages that do not include loans.

For international students admitted for fall 2023, Vanderbilt offered need-based aid and/or merit scholarships to 72 students representing 42 countries. The range of awards offered was $18,600–$98,552 per year for four years. All students demonstrated exceptional academic and co-curricular talent in the admissions process.

In addition to the non-restricted forms of financial aid for international students, Vanderbilt also offers financial aid to students meeting specific criteria. Examples of need-based financial assistance available for international students include the following:

  • The Hilppa A. K. Roby Scholarship provides full-tuition support to undergraduate students from Finland with demonstrated financial need who are enrolled in Vanderbilt's College of Arts and Science. In addition to full tuition, the Hilppa A. K. Roby Scholarship will provide a stipend of up to $5,000 to be used for a one-time summer study abroad, research investigation or other approved experience, and an additional $1,500 per year as a travel allowance to and from Finland.
  • The Irene and Thomas Harrington International Scholarship provides financial assistance to international students enrolled full time in any of Vanderbilt's four undergraduate schools. Preference is given to students from France, with second preference to students from the European Union.
  • The Early-White International Scholarship provides assistance to undergraduate international students from the United Kingdom or European Union member countries enrolled in the College of Arts and Science.

The CSS Profile or ISFAA (International Student Financial Aid Application) must be submitted by the applicant to be considered for these awards.

Please note that we do not offer financial aid to international transfer students.

*Applicants from countries sanctioned by the U.S. government or countries from which the College Board has declined to accept credit cards (Benin, Cameroon, Ghana, Nigeria, and Togo) should contact the admissions counselor for their region.

Deadline for Need-Based Aid Applications

In order to apply for need-based scholarships, you must submit the College Scholarship Service (CSS) Profile or the ISFAA (International Student Financial Aid Application) by the deadlines below:

  • November 2, 2023, if applying through Early Decision I
  • January 4, 2024, if applying through Early Decision II
  • February 1, 2024, if applying through Regular Decision

Merit-Based Aid for International Students

International first-year applicants are eligible to apply for all merit-based scholarships offered at Vanderbilt.

The application for the Cornelius Vanderbilt Scholarship is required; you must apply to be considered. For the Ingram Scholarship Program and the Chancellor's Scholarship, the application is strongly encouraged; preference is given to those who apply. Students who wish to be considered for additional merit scholarships are encouraged to complete the Cornelius Vanderbilt Scholarship application. 

Within two business days of submitting your application for admission to Vanderbilt, you should receive an email from the Office of Undergraduate Admissions explaining how to create your online MyAppVU account. Under the Scholarship Application tab in MyAppVU, you will be able to select the signature program(s) to which you wish to apply. Students should be aware that merit-based scholarships are awarded only to a select few of our most exceptional applicants each year.

Need-Based Aid for U.S. Citizens Abroad and U.S. Permanent Residents

U.S. citizens and eligible non-citizens living abroad are eligible to receive need-based financial assistance from one of the strongest need-based financial aid programs in the country. Vanderbilt is proud to offer need-blind admission and meet 100% of each student's financial need with generous aid packages that do not include institutional loans. Vanderbilt's need-based aid program is designed to encourage all qualified U.S. citizens and eligible non-citizens — regardless of financial circumstances — to consider applying for admission to Vanderbilt. Cost should not be a barrier to access, so Vanderbilt's no-loan financial aid program has no income cutoff and every family who feels they may need help paying for a Vanderbilt education should apply for financial assistance.

To apply for need-based financial aid U.S. citizens abroad and eligible non-citizens should submit the following:

  1. A completed College Scholarship Service Financial Aid Profile (CSS PROFILE)
  2. A completed Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA)
  3. Official copies of your or your parents' 2022 tax return with all attachments and W-2 forms to the Office of Student Financial Aid and Undergraduate Scholarships as soon as they are complete or available

Possible Alternate Sources of Financial Aid

International students are encouraged to explore the possibilities of external assistance when financing a Vanderbilt education. Corporations, foundations, service organizations, religious groups, parent and school associations, etc. sponsor numerous educational assistance programs. International students are also encouraged to explore the International Education Financial Aid (IEFA) website for information regarding scholarships and loans.

The following organizations and agencies may be helpful resources in locating financial aid. Students are invited to make inquiries. Vanderbilt is not associated with, nor endorses any of the following organizations, but is pleased to provide a sampling of many similar organizations in the U.S. and around the world.

  • eduPass — The SmartStudent Guide for Studying in the USA
  • The African American Institute (AAI)
    833 United Nations Plaza
    New York, New York 10017-3581
  • AAI
    1320 — 19th Street, N.W.
    Washington, D.C. 20036-1679
  • Institute for International Education (IIE)
    833 United Nations Plaza
    New York, New York 10017-3581
  • International Human Assistance Program
    360 Park Avenue South
    New York, New York 10010-1769
  • Service (AMIDEAST)
    Suite 1001717 Massachusetts Avenue, N.W
    Washington, D.C. 20036-4601
    (AMIDEAST has several field offices in various countries in the Middle East.)