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I4I Scholarships

The Illinois for Illinois (I4I) Scholarships are available to all University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign undergraduate students studying abroad on pre-approved programs. The funding for this scholarship is provided by a student-initiated fee.

Scholarship application deadlines often fall before or on the same day as the program application deadline. Be sure to research and apply for scholarships as early in the process as possible.

Application Cycles

The Fall Cycle provides scholarships for Winter Break and Spring Semester, as well as early apply options for Spring Break and Summer programs. The application opens in early July and is due on September 15.

The Spring Cycle provides scholarships for Spring Break, Summer, Fall Semester, and Academic Year Study Abroad Programs, as well as an early apply option for Winter Break programs. The application opens in early December and is due on February 15.

Scholarship Categories

The I4I is awarded in three different categories: General Merit, Financial Need, and Underrepresented. Students traveling to non-traditional locations receive some special consideration. Students can be considered in all of the categories for which they are eligible, but may only receive an award in one category.

  • Half of the available funding is awarded in the financial need category. The scholarship committee uses FAFSA information and a budget statement on the application to determine financial need.
  • A third of the available funding is awarded in the underrepresented category. The underrepresented categories include: 1) First Generation Student (neither parent graduated from a four-year institution with a degree); 2) Traditionally underrepresented minority (Latinx, Black, Native American, or Pacific Islander); 3) Students with a physical or sensory disability registered with DRES on campus.
  • The remaining funding is awarded in the general merit category. All applications are automatically considered for an award in this category.

Scholarship Amounts

  • Short-Term (Winter Break, Spring Break, or Summer): $1,000-$1,500
  • Semester (Fall or Spring): $2,000-$3,000
  • Academic Year: $4,000-$6,000


To be eligible for an I4I Scholarship, you must:

  • Be a University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign student (international degree-seeking students ARE eligible);
  • Meet the academic requirements of your college to be eligible to study abroad;
  • Identify a study abroad program that is approved by the university, to which you intend to apply or have already applied

Frequently Asked Questions

Rating is based primarily on two short scholarship essays. The committee wants to see that: 1) you have researched your program; 2) you have done academic and cultural preparation for your program; 3) the program aligns with your goals and interests. Each application is reviewed and scored by two separate committee members.

You may apply for the I4I Scholarship as many times as you wish. You can also apply for multiple programs each cycle by filling out separate applications (for example, if you are applying in the Fall Cycle, you can submit applications for both a Winter Break Program and a Spring Semester Program). However, you can only be awarded one I4I scholarship per application cycle.

Notifications will be sent out approximately three to four weeks after the application closes.

Many qualified students apply for I4I Scholarships each cycle and funding is limited. Due to the quantities of applications we receive, we cannot give a specific answer to this question for each applicant. We can say that scholarship winners are determined based on the quality of the essay responses and the ability of the student to articulate how the program complements their goals.

Awards are disbursed through the Office of Student Financial Aid. Your award will be applied to your student account no sooner than ten days prior to the start of your study abroad term.

Payments to Foreign Nationals take longer to process, so they may be payed a bit later.

If you are selected to receive a study abroad scholarship and you withdraw from your study abroad program before the start of the program, you will be required to return the full amount of the scholarship. If you withdraw after beginning the program, you may petition to keep a portion of the scholarship to help defray costs incurred on the program. If for any reason, you change to a program that was not the one for which the scholarship was awarded, the scholarship coordinator will consider the following factors to determine if the scholarship may still be awarded: 1) the reason for changing programs and 2) the intent of the scholarship application essay. It is your responsibility to notify the Illinois International Finance if your study plans change, and to provide a rationale describing how the new study abroad program aligns with the statement of goals expressed in your scholarship application essay.

Scholarship Process

Drafting Your Application

The National and International Scholarships Program is available to assist you in revising applications for regionally or nationally competitive study abroad scholarships.

If you are applying for a scholarship consult the Writers Workshop and/or asking a peer to review your work. For those unavailable to meet face-to-face with the Writers Workshop, consider participating in their online synchronous tutoring service.


Questions about I4I may be directed to Illinois International Finance.