• Home
    Home This is where you can find all the blog posts throughout the site.
  • Categories
    Categories Displays a list of categories from this blog.
  • Tags
    Tags Displays a list of tags that have been used in the blog.
  • Bloggers
    Bloggers Search for your favorite blogger from this site.
  • Archives
    Archives Contains a list of blog posts that were created previously.

How to Find Free Money for Graduate School

by in Rene's Blogs
  • Font size: Larger Smaller
  • Hits: 1030
  • Subscribe to this entry
  • Print
How to Find Free Money for Graduate School

You’ve finally earned your Bachelor’s degree and have made it into graduate school. Whether you already have massive student loans from undergrad or you managed to graduate unscathed, you don’t want to add to your tremendous piles of debt or create a new pile. My new series will help you discover four ways to find free money and keep your head above water.


While less common than undergraduate scholarships, scholarships for graduate students are available. Luckily, a number of scholarship providers are willing to help graduate students continue their education by providing some extra funding.

College-Based Funding

Some universities aid their alumni through tuition discounts on graduate programs and additional certification and training. You may be surprised by what your alma mater can offer you, so explore all of your options.

First, speak with your academic and/or faculty advisor about department-specific opportunities. Ask them where to look, what the university or department requirements are, what kind of scholarships are being offered, and their deadlines.

Second, check your graduate department’s website to look at the scholarship opportunities posted and explore the requirements and deadlines for each one.

Career Specific

There are numerous scholarships available to those pursuing a particular field. When money hunting, be sure you’re not only looking to your college or university department for funding opportunities, especially if you’re entering a high demand or expanding field. Expanding career fields include healthcare (physicians, pharmacists), security and technology (IT, engineering), and education (teachers, professors).

Popular subject-specific fields for scholarship funding include business, history, mathematics, science, engineering, and language studies. By focusing in more general scholarships, such as social science, communications, library science, and physical and life sciences, more specialized opportunities will ultimately lead to more specific programs for students pursuing graduate-level studies in their field.

To find these career-specific scholarships, start with a general web search among reputable search engines, or ask your academic and/or faculty advisor for suggestions.

Unique Scholarships

With so many different academic-focused scholarships available, many students apply for chances to win unique scholarships, as there is often less competition. Some of these awards have such specific criteria, or are so unknown, that relatively few students ever apply, increasing your chances of getting the funding.  

To find these career-specific scholarships, start with a general web search among reputable sites or check the students/careers section of large company websites to see if you qualify for their learning or leadership programs. Another option is to browse your favorite websites or hobby forums to see if they offer funding opportunities.

Popular Websites

For students who are unfamiliar with scholarships, or how to search for them, it can be difficult to determine which scholarships out there are available. Below is a list of popular websites that post countless scholarships from around the internet for graduate students to browse all in one area (and remember to check your institution’s website for their college-based opportunities):


FastWeb is one of the premier online resources when paying for school. Offering scholarship opportunities for every type of graduate student just a click away. All you need to do is register for a free FastWeb account and complete your online profile. The questions asked are used to match students to scholarships listed in their database.


Peterson's provides some of the best material online to aid students with graduate school funding. With Peterson's, you are getting the best and most up-to-date information on relevant financial opportunities by allowing users to narrow down search results based on subject, residency, deadline, and more.


GoGRAD provides an easy online platform where all types of graduate students can search for school funding. With user-friendly search tools, graduate students are given the opportunity to vet all their options by searching through databases by subject and demographic information.



Scholarships.com is a free scholarship search website that helps both undergraduate and graduate students locate and apply for scholarship opportunities. By registering for free, users are able to save search results and revisit scholarships at a later time to apply. Like FastWeb, the questions asked are used to match students to scholarships listed in their database.

My love of research emerged well before I received my PhD in Experimental Psychology in 2004; however, it was around that time that I realized how much my passion and experience could benefit others. This is what inspired me to create Elite Research, LLC, which employs statistical and editing consultants to assist faculty, students, and anyone else who needs assistance in conducting or reporting research. For the past 9 years, my colleagues and I have helped graduate students around the world through tutoring and workshops, setting up mock dissertation defenses, or even just acting as a cheerleader or shoulder to cry on during those challenging times. My goal for PhDStudent is to provide all graduate students who are seeking support with the tools they need to survive graduate school, a time that I personally know can be demanding and exhausting. When I do get some rare time for myself, I enjoy traveling, appreciating art, and making fun of my husband, whose love for Star Wars and The Princess Bride I will never fully understand.