In higher education, excellence goes hand in hand with diversity. Penn seeks the most talented undergraduate students from the widest range of backgrounds and from countries all over the world, and has committed to supporting admitted international students through generous financial aid.
International students enrich the Penn community by sharing their unique voices, life experiences, and perspectives. Their presence helps prepare all Penn students for a society that is becoming increasingly diverse and global.
As the importance of a globally informed education steadily increases, our goal is to grow the financial aid support offered to international students. Currently, admitted international students have 100 percent of their assessed need met, but Penn is not yet where we aspire to be, need-blind for all international applicants.
Significant progress has been made in growing financial aid resources for international students. Over the past decade, the grant aid offered to Penn’s need-aware admitted international students has increased approximately 100 percent. Penn currently spends more unrestricted dollars on international financial aid than any of our Ivy peers. In fact, many colleges and universities offer no international financial aid.
But there is more to be done. Creating a need-blind international undergraduate admissions policy would level the playing field—all applicants would be considered on their merits alone. Such a shift would be a game changer, but would also be an enormous expenditure. Endowing a scholarship for an international student is an investment that will reap dividends for Penn and for society for generations to come.
International Financial Aid Frequently Asked Questions
Absolutely. For admitted international students, Penn makes the same promise it does to domestic students – we will meet your full demonstrated need of your undergraduate career and we will do so through our signature grant-based aid program. Many colleges and universities offer no international financial aid. Gifts to international financial aid allow Penn to grow the number of international students who can be admitted to the University and supported by financial aid.
During the COVID-19 pandemic, the University and Penn Global have worked tirelessly to respond to each and every international student request, including visa needs, to ensure the safety and well-being of our global population and will continue to be a critical resource to students as they navigate the fall semester. Penn has assisted international students with housing needs for this academic year. When students needed to depart campus in March 2020, Penn provided students from around the world with critical resources, such as purchasing plane tickets home and providing debit cards for food and internet.
In Fall 2020, there were 1,286 international undergraduate students enrolled at the University who represent 111 countries from across the globe. 28% of the total international population receives financial aid. The average aid package for an international undergraduate enrolled full-time in both fall and spring for the 2020-2021 academic year was $61,366. Penn meets the full demonstrated need of admitted international students, just like we would for a domestic student.
Yes. International applications to Penn have increased nearly 300 percent in the past 20 years. To keep pace with this, over the past 15 years, the financial aid offered to Penn’s need-aware admitted international students has increased more than 250 percent.
No, international students do not qualify for federally-funded Pell Grants or for the portion of work study stipends paid by the U.S. government for domestic students. However, Penn funds the difference so that international students can participate in work study opportunities, making total aid packages for international students more expensive for the University.
Endowing a scholarship for an international student is an investment that reaps dividends for Penn and for society for generations to come. Admitted international students have 100% of their assessed need met, but we are not yet where we aspire to be – which is ultimately need-blind for all international applicants. Endowing a scholarship for an international student is an investment that will reap dividends. By establishing a new international scholarship, you directly impact the lives of exceptional students from around the world by helping them come to Penn, add to the rich diversity of the Penn community, and enhance international understanding beyond campus.
The COVID-19 Special Response Fund for International Undergraduates
Gifts to help international undergraduate students and their families during this time can be directed to the COVID-19 International Special Response Fund in Student Financial Services. This fund will be used to support emergency and ongoing financial needs for international undergraduates due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
The International Financial Aid Fund
Inspired by the leadership of Dr. Davis, the Dr. Ambrose C. Davis Memorial Endowed Scholarship was established in 2007 to support financial aid for international undergraduate students. In the decade since the fund was established, it has nearly quadrupled in size. Gifts of any size to the fund allow Penn to support exceptional international undergraduate students and honor the University’s legacy of diversity, inclusion, and excellence.
The Huntsman Program in International Studies and Business Endowed Scholarship
The Huntsman Program in International Studies & Business at Penn is a unique, interdisciplinary undergraduate course of study that integrates business education, advanced language training and a liberal arts education. Huntsman alumni from the Classes of 2006 and 2011 united in 2016 to establish the Huntsman Program in International Studies and Business Endowed Scholarship. The creation of this scholarship is a testament to how much these alumni value their experience at Penn, and recognize the importance of providing financial aid to talented students from around the globe. Gifts to this scholarship allow you to support talented Huntsman Program students at any giving level.
Help shape the future of a young person.
By endowing a scholarship, you can support future generations of first-rate students who, if given the opportunity, can change the world.