Funding Your Master’s Degree Abroad
So, a lot of people ask me questions about how to pay for a MS abroad, in particular, how to pay for a MS in the USA. Before getting into the details of the answer, let’s look at why this is very important. If you are unable to get funding for your MS, you will most likely have to take a loan to fund your Masters’ in the US. So, on average, you might take a loan of $30000 USD (~INR 20 lakhs). You will be taking it from an Indian bank at a rate of interest between 8-12% depending on the current rate. So, when you graduate after two years; you will be under a lot of pressure to pay off the loans. If you get a job in the US, you will be able to able to pay it off in 2-3 years. In that case, you are doing great; but you are still paying interest of $3000 (~2 lakhs) per year during that time. If you are unable to get a job in the USA, you will struggle to pay the amount with an Indian salary. That puts you under a lot of pressure to get a job after MS. And it is not always an easy task to get a job in the US (or anywhere else) when you require sponsorship from employers. However, if you can get funding for your MS, you will not be paying any interest on your loan while working; which leads to increased savings; and you are also flexible in your career choices after you graduate. You can get a job anywhere; or start a company; or take some time off. It makes a huge difference.
So, you might have guessed that a lot of people do end up getting funded for a MS in the USA. Some of them get funded through research assistantships or teaching assistantships. Some of them are able to get scholarships from the university itself. A large portion of them come from rich families and are able to pay for it themselves. However, you may not fit into any of the above categories. In such cases, it is advisable to look at external scholarships. In fact, I advise students to start looking at them early in the application process; so they have a backup in case they are not able to get research/teaching assistantship. While you have noticed that most scholarships in US universities are for US citizens; there are several organizations that provide scholarships specifically for Indian citizens. And they do it for top universities across the globe; in US, UK, Canada and Australia. I have compiled the best of them in my Amazon book.
This article was submitted by our guest writer, Abishek Kumar