Financial Aid & Scholarships

Students who participate in approved programs abroad and who will receive the UNC Charlotte equivalent of full-time academic credit for the term of their experience abroad are eligible to put their financial aid towards their study abroad expenses. Additionally, students may be eligible to apply for scholarships specifically for study abroad through UNC Charlotte Education Abroad, other departments at UNC Charlotte, or through external organizations.

Financial Aid Options

Grants, scholarships, and loans are the different aid options available for study abroad. Eligibility and amounts for each type of aid will vary by student. Please refer to Niner Central’s website to learn more about applying for financial aid.


Students do not apply for grants (e.g. Federal Pell Grant). Grants are automatically added to the student’s account if they have submitted a FASFA and are eligible to receive one.


Students who apply for financial aid may be offered to take out loans (federal or alternative/private loans) as part of their award.

Please visit Niner Central’s Financial Aid page to learn more about the different types of aid.

Scholarship Resources

NinerScholars Portal

The NinerScholars Portal is the one-stop shop for UNC Charlotte scholarship opportunities. Students can log in, create a profile, and the system will automatically match them with scholarships for which they may be eligible, including EA scholarships and other UNC Charlotte scholarships.

UNC Charlotte awards more than 1,600 scholarships each year to incoming freshman, transfer, undergraduate, and graduate students with outstanding academic accomplishments and demonstrated financial need. It is crucial that when students are matched with scholarships for which they are eligible, they read the requirements and usage guidelines carefully; there is no guarantee that scholarships administered by departments and colleges besides EA can be applied to study abroad.

EA Scholarships

Scholarships offered and managed by UNC Charlotte Education Abroad can be found in the NinerScholars Portal. Students will need to create a profile and apply for scholarships directly through the portal.

External Scholarships

External scholarships can come from a wide variety of sources including other UNC Charlotte departments and organizations unrelated to the University. Remember that external scholarships are not administered or awarded by UNC Charlotte Education Abroad, so we cannot answer questions about the application process, eligibility requirements, or awarding process.

Scholarship Essay Guide and Resources

Not sure where to start with your essays? Check out our guide here, which includes links to campus resources, quick tips for competitive study abroad scholarship essays, and a comprehensive outline for the Gilman Scholarship. Don’t forget that you can meet with EA or the Writing Resource Center for scholarship essay advising!


In addition to utilizing financial aid and applying for scholarships, students are encouraged to consider fundraising on their own. EA does not endorse or recommend any particular company or organization, but students may consider fundraising websites and contacting local companies and organizations in the community to inquire if there are any scholarships, grants, or loans available.


Yes! As long as you will receive academic credit and are the equivalent of full-time at UNC Charlotte the term you go abroad, you can utilize your aid to put towards study abroad-related expenses. Visit Niner Central’s website to learn more about financial aid.

Niner Central is your primary resource for financial aid questions. EA is able to provide guidance on the cost estimates for your program and how we communicate with the financial aid office, but cannot advise on financial aid eligibility or processes. Review the chart on the Financial Aid and Study Abroad page for a better understanding of the roles of EA, Niner Central, and Financial Aid in regards to study abroad financial planning.

If you are a financial aid/scholarship recipient, you may be able to defer/postpone certain payments due to EA until you receive your aid/scholarship money. You would request this via your EA application once you are approved. However, certain payments (such as application fees and faculty-led program deposits) cannot be deferred and must be submitted by the specified due date.

You’ll need to look at the scholarship organization’s website or contact the scholarship organization directly to confirm whether or not the scholarship can be used to go abroad. However, as long as you’re going abroad and receiving academic credit, it’s likely you’ll be able to apply any scholarship – even if it is not a scholarship specifically intended for study abroad – to your expenses.

There are a lot of scholarships out there and they each may have a different application process and deadline. Be sure to look at the scholarship’s website to see when you can begin the application and by when it needs to be submitted. Most scholarship applications allow you to begin the application or even submit it without having been officially approved by UNC Charlotte Education Abroad or accepted into the program by the third party/host institution, but you will likely have to provide proof of acceptance if awarded.

Each scholarship application will have different requirements. It’s likely that the application may require an official UNC Charlotte transcript, a personal statement, and letters of recommendation.

There will probably always be a “personal statement” of some sort required by the scholarship application. In a lot of cases, this may even be the most critical component. This is an opportunity to articulate who you are, what you want to accomplish in life, and how studying or interning abroad can allow you to accomplish these goals. In other words, it will take time and a lot of planning to write a really great personal statement, so be sure to start the process early.

This is a tough question because it will depend on the individual scholarship – some can be very competitive, while others may not have as many applicants. Don’t let the idea that a scholarship may be competitive deter you from applying! Some students have been awarded more than one scholarship and were able to combine their scholarship awards to cover partial or even all costs associated with their program!

This will depend on the scholarship. However, in many cases, you will have the money disbursed to you directly at the start of the semester you go abroad.