MBA Scholarship Programs in the USA

By | April 22, 2024

An MBA can be your passport to a thriving career, but the hefty price tag can make it feel like a distant dream. Fear not, aspiring business leaders! The USA boasts a vast array of scholarship programs specifically designed to help you navigate the financial hurdles. To unlock this treasure trove, here’s your comprehensive guide to MBA scholarship programs in the USA:

MBA Scholarship Programs in USA

The USA boasts a staggering array of scholarships for MBA hopefuls, each with its own unique criteria and benefits. Here’s a taste of the bounty:


1. Merit-based: These scholarships reward academic excellence and GMAT/GRE scores. Examples include the Horatio W. Goldsmith Fellowship at Harvard Business School and the Stanford Reliance Dhirubhai Fellowship.

2. Need-based: These scholarships consider financial hardship and offer significant aid. The Forte MBA Fellowships for women and the Jack Kent Cooke Foundation Full-Tuition Scholarships are prime examples.

3. Diversity-focused: These scholarships promote inclusion and representation in the business world. The Forté Foundation and the National Black MBA Association (NBMBA) offer such scholarships.

4. School-specific: Many universities offer their own scholarships, often targeting specific demographics or areas of interest. Check with your target schools for details.


5. External organizations: Corporations and foundations also offer scholarships. Explore opportunities from Goldman Sachs, AIG, and the Rotary Foundation.

Funded MBA Scholarship Programs

1. University-specific Scholarships: Top B-schools offer merit-based scholarships to attract exceptional candidates. Examples include Stanford’s Knight-Hennessy Scholars Program and Harvard’s Horace W. Goldsmith Fellowship. These often cover full tuition and provide additional benefits like mentorship and networking opportunities.

2. External Scholarships: Organizations and foundations offer scholarships for diverse demographic groups, academic excellence, specific career paths, and even underrepresented industries. Explore options like Forte Fellowships for women in business, the Onsi Sawiris Masters Scholarships for international students, and the MPOWER MBA Scholarship for minority students.

3. Government Grants: Federal and state governments offer grants based on financial need and academic merit. Research the Federal Pell Grant Program and your state’s scholarship programs to see if you qualify.

Types of Scholarships:

  • University-specific: Many top business schools offer merit-based scholarships to exceptional candidates. Stanford’s Knight-Hennessy Scholars program and Columbia’s Meyer Feldberg Distinguished Fellowship are prime examples. Research your target schools for their unique offerings.
  • Independent scholarships: Organizations like Forte Foundation (women in business), Jack Kent Cooke Foundation (high-achieving students), and AAUW (international women) award fellowships across various institutions. Explore your background and aspirations for potential matches.
  • Need-based aid: Financial aid offices at most universities consider your income and potential hardship to offer grants and loans. Don’t overlook this option, especially if facing financial constraints.

Who Are Qualified to Apply for the MBA Program

The qualifications for MBA scholarship programs in the USA vary greatly depending on the specific program and its funding source. However, here’s a general overview of the common eligibility criteria you might encounter:

Basic Requirements:

  • Academic background: Most programs require a bachelor’s degree from an accredited institution, often with a minimum GPA (typically around 3.0). Some may accept exceptional candidates with work experience in lieu of a high GPA.
  • Standardized test scores: Scores on the GMAT or GRE are often required, with competitive scores expected for merit-based scholarships. Some programs may consider other tests like the Executive Assessment (EA) for experienced professionals.
  • English language proficiency: International students may need to demonstrate English language proficiency through tests like TOEFL or IELTS.

Amount Funded for MBA Programs

Here are some examples of funded amounts for specific scholarships:

  • Forté Foundation MBA Fellowship: Up to $20,000 per year for women pursuing an MBA.
  • A.G. Lafley Fellowship: Full tuition and living expenses for exceptional MBA students at UC Berkeley Haas School of Business.
  • Gates Millennium Scholars Program: Up to $40,000 per year for outstanding minority students, including those pursuing an MBA.
  • Need-based aid at top universities: Can range from partial tuition coverage to full financial aid packages exceeding $100,000 per year.

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