Graduate Students

Graduate Student Eligibility and Selection Criteria

The program is open to residents and citizens of Sub-Saharan African countries. Students must be first-time applicants to MSU. Transfer students are not eligible for the program.

  • Prior completion of a Bachelors Degree from an African University with academic achievements suggesting continued academic success as a graduate student.
  • Strong commitment to a professional path in line with an area of study that can positively impact Africa.
  • An interest in and capacity for give-back, evidenced by commitment and engagement on campus, in professional pursuits and/or community.
  • Manifest ethical behavior and strong character essential to joining The MasterCard Foundation Scholars Network.
  • Ability to deal with change, uncertainty, and adversity, as well as interest in other countries and cultures, necessary to succeed as a student overseas and represent one's home country
  • Significant financial need and/or from lowest income bracket in country of origin
  • Commitment to return to Africa and give back in ways that enhance the economic growth and social development of Africa.

Download Scholarship Application Forms

  • Scholarship applications for next year will be available in September.

Application Instructions

  1. In order to apply for the MasterCard Foundation Scholars Program at Michigan State University, you MUST first apply to the desired masters program through the department that hosts your program and thereafter be nominated for a MasterCard Foundation Scholarship by a faculty member therein. Only students who have been admitted to on-campus Masters Programs are eligible for this scholarship. A list of graduate programs is available via the following website: grad.msu.edu/department.
    IMPORTANT: Please save your Applicant ID and password during the MSU application process, as you will need your ID to complete the MCF Scholarship Application.
  2. Make arrangements to take an English Proficiency Exam (TOEFL or IELTS), and any other examinations (for example GRE, GMAT) which the department or program to which you are applying requires.Students are strongly encouraged to take these exams no later than early-December 2015 in order for MSU to receive scores promptly.
  3. Ensure that the department receives all required supporting documents and official test scores by the due date. Each department sets its own criteria for admission. Read the department's website carefully and then follow the department's instructions for graduate admission. Make arrangements to send all required official academic documents, letters of support, official test scores, etc. as indicated by the department and on the Application for Graduate Admission.
    Only students admitted to Michigan State University will be considered for this scholarship. You should communicate with the appropriate graduate department regarding the status of your application.
  4. Complete the graduate student scholarship application and send it to your graduate department to arrive by the due date. If submitting a hand-written scholarship application, ensure the document is clearly legible.
  5. Provide a copy of the MCF Recommendation Form to an appropriate individual per the form instructions. Have your recommender complete this form and email it as an attachment to mcfs@msu.edu no later than the due date.

OVERALL TIMELINE (For August 2016 intake):

FEBRUARY 1, 2016 MasterCard Foundation Scholars Program at MSU Master's Scholarship Application and Recommendation Form deadline. In addition, application for graduate admission and all supporting academic materials (official transcripts, mark sheets, external exams, test scores, letter of recommendation) received by MSU by this date.
MARCH 2016 Finalist Interviews
APRIL 12, 2016 Notification of Scholarship Status
APRIL 29, 2016 Awardee decision due date

Please email further inquiries regarding this scholarship to mcfs@msu.edu.