OpenIDEO is an open innovation platform. Join our global community to solve big challenges for social good. Sign Up / Login or Learn more

Available Scholarships for Refugees

A list of available scholarships available to refugees with information about each one and a link to the website where one can apply.

Photo of Diana
8 3

Written by

University of the People

University of the People (UoPeople) is the world’s first non-profit, tuition-free, accredited, online academic institution dedicated to opening access to higher education globally for all qualified individuals, despite financial, geographic or societal constraints.

Founded in 2009 by educational entrepreneur Shai Reshef, UoPeople is affiliated with the United Nations GAID, the Clinton Global Initiative, and Yale Law School ISP. UoPeople has signed collaborative partnership agreements with New York University (NYU) to accept students; Microsoft for scholarships, internships and mentoring and with Hewlett-Packard (HP), through the Catalyst Initiative, to provide student internship opportunities. UoPeople offers undergraduate programs in Business Administration and Computer Science. To date, more than 2,000 students from over 140 countries have been admitted. Of students polled consecutively each term, 95% would recommend UoPeople to a peer. With its tuition-free online programs, University of the People is opening access to higher education for all those constrained, as well as building a scalable and replicable model capable of changing the very nature of higher education. The non-profit UoPeople has managed to succeed in cutting down almost the entire cost of higher education, and does not charge for tuition or books/materials. All that is asked is for students to pay a one-time application processing fee ($50) and subsequent modest examination processing fees ($100) levied per course. There are no other fees whatsoever.

UoPeople strives to ensure, in keeping with its mission, that no qualified individual is excluded for financial reasons. To assist students in financial need, UoPeople has dedicated student scholarship funds. Corporate sponsors include Hewlett-Packard’s sponsorship of 100 HP Scholars as part of the UoPeople Women Scholarship Fund; Microsoft's sponsorship of 1,000 African students as part of the 4Afrika initiative; Western Union's sponsorship of students and Intel Foundation’s sponsorship of women students from Haiti.


Windle Trust International offers scholarships to youths and refugees in Sudan, Uganda, Kenya and Ethiopia to study in Africa or UK. The Trust’s work is funded by a wide range of donors and supported by universities and colleges in Britain and Africa

The Albert Einstein German Academic Refugee Initiative (DAFI) is a scholarship assistance program for refugees funded by the German Government and implemented worldwide by UNHCR. The programme grants scholarships to refugees at universities, colleges and polytechnics in their host countries. In 2008, the programme also started offering education opportunities in their countries of origin to refugees considering repatriation

Otto Benecke Foundation is a non-profit organisation launched in 1965 by the German students’ associations. The foundation runs educational programmes with the aim of integrating immigrants and refugees into German society

The Hegg Hoffet Fund for Displaced Women Graduates of the Geneva-based International Federation of University Women assists graduate women who have been displaced as a result of war, political upheaval or other serious emergencies. The Fund provides short term grants for refresher courses for re-entry into the candidates’ professional field, and for language training and other courses to assist with integration into their new countries. In addition to financial assistance, IFUW’s national and local groups also provide the graduate refugees with moral support to help them to adjust to life in a different country

Entraide Universitaire (the French University Student Services Association) is an association offering financial help to refugee students in France who are not eligible for a regular scholarship

The Academic Relations between Asia and Europe (AREAS) provides scholarships for students and researchers from the Third Countries targeted by the project (Cambodia, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Myanmar, Mongolia, Sri Lanka, Thailand, The Philippines, Vietnam) in order to study, do research, training or teaching at one of the European Partner Universities (Host Universities).  Scholarships are also open to candidates with refugee status

The ‘Refugee Education Post Secondary Education’ (RAPSE) project of the Norwegian Refugee Alliance  provides scholarships for young camp refugees wishing to access college or university education

The ‘Student Refugee Programme’ of the World University Service Canada (WUSC), through Local Committees across Canada, sponsors over 65 student refugees every year, enabling them to enter the country as permanent residents and pursue their education at Canadian universities and colleges

The ‘Maytree Scholarship Program’ of the Canadian private foundation Maytree offers scholarships to protected persons (Convention refugees) and permanent residents who were protected persons entering first year of undergraduate programs at university or community college in Toronto. The programme is an intensive, participatory programme providing peer and financial support The 10-year anniversary report on the programme can be downloaded at content/uploads/2009/10/MakingTheirMark.pdf

The University of Canberra (UC) has a number of different scholarships available to refugee students, including the Mary Davidson Scholarships for women refugee students and the UC Foundation Refugee Scholarships


Join the conversation:

Photo of Bella Anna

I am Burundian refugee how can I get this scholarship pls help me..

View all comments