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How to Get a Scholarship to Study Abroad from Pakistan?

By BS MediaTwitter Profile | Updated: Sunday, 23 July 2023 15:41 UTC
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Group of young afro american female students dressed in black graduation gown. campus as a background.
Group of young afro american female students dressed in black graduation gown. campus as a background. Freepik / @prostooleh

Studying abroad can be a life-changing experience, offering a unique opportunity to immerse oneself in a different culture, gain international exposure, and receive world-class education. However, the cost of studying abroad can be daunting for many students. Scholarships present an excellent option to ease the financial burden and make your dream of studying overseas a reality. In this blog post, we will explore the steps to secure a scholarship to study abroad and specifically highlight opportunities offered by South African universities.

Research Your Study Abroad Options

Start by researching potential universities and programs that align with your academic and career goals. Consider South African universities like the University of Cape Town, the University of Witwatersrand, and Stellenbosch University, which have a reputation for offering scholarships to international students. Each university typically provides detailed information about their scholarship programs on their official websites.

Plan Ahead and Evaluate Your Eligibility

Scholarship application processes can be competitive and time-consuming. Thus, starting early and planning ahead is crucial. Be aware of scholarship application deadlines and requirements, which may vary from one scholarship to another. Early preparation will give you ample time to gather all the necessary documents, write compelling essays, and secure letters of recommendation.

When evaluating your eligibility, consider factors such as academic merit, financial need, extracurricular activities, community service, and nationality. Some scholarships may also be targeted towards students from specific regions or fields of study. Focus on scholarships where you align well with the eligibility criteria to increase your chances of success.

Seek Guidance and Support

Don't hesitate to seek guidance from teachers, mentors, or educational advisors. They can provide valuable insights and advice on suitable scholarship opportunities, as well as help you tailor your application to meet specific requirements. Additionally, consider joining online forums or social media groups where students share their scholarship experiences and support each other throughout the application process.

Polish Your Academic Profile and Write Stellar Essays

Academic excellence is often a crucial factor in scholarship evaluations. Focus on improving your academic performance and maintaining a strong GPA to enhance your scholarship prospects. Craft compelling essays that highlight your achievements, aspirations, and reasons for studying abroad. Use this opportunity to showcase your unique strengths and personality, making your application stand out from the rest.

Secure Strong Letters of Recommendation

Letters of recommendation play a significant role in scholarship applications. Request them from teachers or employers who know you well and can attest to your capabilities and potential as a successful international student. Ensure the recommenders have enough time to craft thoughtful and detailed letters that highlight your achievements and abilities.

Apply to Multiple Scholarships

Cast a wide net by applying to various scholarships. Each scholarship has its own selection criteria, and applying to multiple opportunities increases your chances of securing financial aid. Keep track of application deadlines and requirements for each scholarship to stay organized during the application process. In South Africa, scholarships are known as bursaries, an example of such is FASSET Bursary.

Showcase Extracurricular Involvement and Language Proficiency

Extracurricular activities and community service demonstrate your well-roundedness and dedication to making a positive impact. Highlight your participation in these activities in your scholarship application. If your study destination has a different language, consider taking language proficiency tests like TOEFL or IELTS to demonstrate your language abilities.

Understand the Scholarship Terms and Prepare for Interviews

Before submitting your application, thoroughly read and comprehend the terms and conditions of each scholarship. Be aware of any contractual obligations or academic performance requirements tied to the scholarship. If shortlisted for an interview, prepare thoroughly by researching common interview questions and practicing your responses to make a lasting impression.

Consider Financial Aid Options and Government Scholarships

In addition to scholarships, explore other financial aid options such as grants, bursaries, and student loans. These resources can complement your scholarship funds and further support your study abroad journey. Additionally, check if your home country offers government-sponsored scholarships for studying abroad, as these opportunities can be an excellent source of financial support.

Review and Revise Your Application

Proofread your scholarship application thoroughly to eliminate any grammatical errors or typos. Ensure that all required documents are attached, and your essays reflect your true aspirations and achievements. Ask a friend or family member to review your application for a fresh perspective before submitting it.

Stay Persistent and Positive

The scholarship application process can be challenging, and you may face rejections along the way. Stay persistent and maintain a positive outlook throughout the process. Treat each rejection as a learning experience and use feedback to strengthen your future applications.


Securing a scholarship to study abroad requires diligent research, thorough preparation, and perseverance. South African universities offer a range of scholarship opportunities to international students. By following the steps outlined in this guide and staying committed to your goals, you can increase your chances of obtaining the financial support needed to embark on a transformative international education journey.

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