The depleting value of rupee is thrashing down the confidence of those planning to pursue the higher education abroad. Anticipating the prospects of rise in tuition fees, air fare, food and other living expenses on the backdrop of weakening value of rupee, many foreign education aspirants are either dropping their plans or looking for some funding avenues besides their parents' financial support. And this whole scenario ends up at the increased number of scholarship applications to philanthropic trusts.
With the value of rupee reached over 60 to a dollar, the costs to overseas education have raised up to 15-20%. As per a report by Assocham, the overall expenses to foreign education have increased by as much as Rs 4 lakh for a single academic session. Fees for undergraduate and postgraduate courses in US universities are about $30,000 and $40,000, respectively.
Taking into account the high number of applications received as well as the fluctuation in currency value, some funding trusts/foundations have increased the scholarship amounts by 33%, or in absolute term Rs 1 lakh per student.
Foreign education trusts/foundations offer different types of support by giving pure and loan scholarships, and/or allowing gifts and travel grants. But, the good news is here that they don’t reduce the scholarships amount with the increasing costs to overseas education.
Becky Ford, manager (external relations) at New Jersey-based Educational Testing Service, revealed that the fluctuation in rupee’s value does not affect the number of TOEFL scholarships. He further said, his organization will award, later this month, 20 scholarships worth $3,000 each and one scholarship of worth $10,000 to deserving undergraduate and graduate students, letting them to pursue their dreams of quality higher education.
R D Sethna Scholarship Fund, one of the oldest scholarship programs in India, has received 250 applications for the academic session of August-September. It allows up to Rs 4 lakh of scholarship to a candidate.