Scholarship Scams

Beware of Scholarship Scams

There are a number of scholarship scams based on genuine scholarship offers from universities, foundations, scholarship sponsors, and scholarship search services. It is important to remember that when applying to university in the U.S. admission will always come before an offer of financial aid.

For international students, over 95 percent of financial aid comes from U.S. universities and colleges, not private foundations or institutions. Less than four percent of international students receive scholarships from private entities.

Warning Signs of a Possible Scam

If a scholarship program requires an application, redemption, or handling fee, even a seemingly low fee such as tshs.5, 000, don’t waste your money! No legitimate scholarship requires a fee.

No legitimate scholarship provider will guarantee that you will win the award, and scholarship search services cannot guarantee that you will win an award. Ambiguous eligibility restrictions and high success rates are another warning sign.

American universities do not provide scholarships to students solely based on their performance on national exams. They take into consideration several factors including standardized test scores, essays, extracurricular activities, letters of recommendation, school results, and national examination results.

Exercise extreme caution if a scholarship deadline is only a few weeks away and encourages you to respond quickly because the awards are given on a “first-come, first served basis.”

Protecting Yourself from Scholarship Scams

Two rules will help protect you from most scholarship scams:

  • If you have to give money to get money, it is a scam.
  • If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is.

Don’t give out your bank account numbers or bank card numbers, over the phone or email, especially to an unsolicited offer. Double check the email address, to ensure it belongs to reputable institution and is not a personal email account.

What to Do If You Suspect a Scam

If you suspect a scam, send a copy of all literature and correspondence to the EducationUSA advisor at: eadar@state.gov  

Interested in Studying in the U.S.?

Please visit our website or email us at: eadar@state.gov with your inquiries. EducationUSA advisers strive to provide accurate, comprehensive, current, and unbiased information on educational opportunities in the United States.