Financial Aid Resources for International Students It is essential that you begin your financial planning prior to arriving in the United States. If you encounter financial hardship, consider the following:
As an F1 student you are entitled to work on campus without authorization from the USCIS. You are not eligible for federal financial aid, and therefore do not qualify for federally funded "workstudy" positions. However, there are a number of other hourly student positions available. Some places that commonly hire international students include:
- The University Bookstore
- ACCESS Department
- Dining Facilities
- Athletics Department
- Office of Residence Life/Housing
- University Police Department
- Academic Departments
There are a multitude of scholarships that go unawarded every year. It is a good idea to apply early and apply for any and all scholarships for which you qualify. You may even want to apply for obscure scholarships with criteria you do not meet sometimes they will award them to the non qualifying but deserving candidate simply because of a lack of applicants. Some excellent scholarship sites are listed below:
Loans and Credit Cards
As much as we hate to do it, we have all, at one time or another, had to borrow money to pay for living or educational expenses. The international student can do so as well.
There are a variety of loans available. Some are offered through banks in the home country, others require a U.S. citizen or permanent resident to cosign the loan (act as guarantor), and others require a good credit history.
The easiest way to establish credit is to obtain a credit card. This is relatively easy to do at your local bank, like Wachovia or Bank of America. Other larger companies may also offer you credit. Some will require a small deposit. Establishing credit, however, requires keeping balances low and paying off balances on a regular basis. Never be late on a credit card payment! Even if you can only afford to make the minimum payment, do so well before the due date.
Another way to establish credit is to make a large purchase, such as an automobile, and make timely, regular payments.
Financial Assistance Resources