International student looking for good financial aid

I am a high school senior from India and I haven’t quite figured out my major yet. I am interested in art, international relations, political science, creative writing and history. It has always been my dream to study abroad but my family cannot afford to pay full tuition. What are some colleges that give good financial aid? Also, is applying early decision/early action worth it? Or is RD is safer option?

Very few colleges give need based aid to internationals. The ones that do are the well endowed and highly selective ones: Harvard, Yale, Stanford, Amherst. etc. They are also the most difficult to get into. Many other colleges give limited merit aid to internationals. How much can you afford> What are yor stats?

I can pay a maximum of 10,000 dollars.

Is that $10k per year? $10k per year would cover international travel and health insurance. So you would need a full ride for tuition, room and board,which is very hard for US students to get and almost impossible for international students.

What are your grades and test scores?

I would look for options in your home country

I can afford $10k tuition/room and board excluding travel costs.
Yeah basically a full ride.
I have maintained approx. 3.5-3.8 GPA for all years of high school and I am yet to do the SAT and am also considering test optional colleges.
Although my home country is my first option, there are only a handful of colleges that offer interdisciplinary programs.
If you know of countries other than the U.S that might offer these programs please let me know.

Beyond your home country look to the EU, UK, and Canada.

Any specific suggestions @MYOS1634?

The very top students in other countries have gotten great scholarships and aid from US colleges , but in very very small numbers. It is extremely difficult for Americans to get full rides. Even more so for foreign student. The international student pool is often one that colleges use to get full pay, not to give full rides or any money. So, it is The best students in your country that get this kind of money. I’ve met students who have fallen in this category.

Also, high stat students, (very high test scores, always the case from my experience) can haa a be a shot at money in schools that do not have a lot of name recognition. You’d have to work hard to find a list of such schools—changes rapidly so old lists not that helpful. For example, some a Catholic schools I know, Sacred Heart, Sienna, St Leo’s, to name a few, have given aid to highly qualified students. Those are the sort of schools where aid might available.

The schools that are need blind for international students and meet full need are mentioned above. Admissions is difficult.

If interested, in giving this a go, do try. People do get admitted, they do get money. But not many. It’s a highly competitive process

I would say: try it. Make a list of schools offering financial aid to international students. Then sort them out based on your SAT and GPA to categorize schools for reach, match and safety. If you do get accepted with some of financial aid, you can decide to go or not.

  1. Apply for history/creative writing or history/art (your second choice should depend on what area reflects your EC’s). Indeed, there are fewer applicants for those fields, especially from India.
  2. If you are the strongest student in Humanities/Social sciences in your school, with top-notch scores (or predicted scores) in those subjects in your State (eg., as shown through Class X exams, for instance), plus at least one remarkable EC, apply to Amherst: fewer Indian applicants and they’re need-blind/meet need even for Internationals.
  3. Apply to Berea. It’s a college dedicated to academically strong, lower income students. They may take ONE student from India so make sure your application is excellent and done early (everything has to be sent in an envelope and received in the Fall.)

Besides studying abroad, what do you see yourself doing in the future?
What do you want to get out of your education? Your major interests are varied and it would be helpful to narrow some of your choices.

Thank you all so much! Your opinions are very helpful. I think I’ll apply and in case I get accepted I will let you all know.