Many students dream of studying in another country because of greater exposure, value and greater quality of education, which is gained by studying at an international college. Students who study in an international college also have greater career option open to them after completion of their studies, but international students are also at disadvantage because they have to bear greater costs during their education. Especially students from developing countries feel it impossible to fund their studies abroad without some kind of financial aid. The Commonwealth Scholarship and Fellowship Plan (CSFP) is an international scholarship program under which aid is provided to bright international students.
The CSFP was first established in 1959 with the aim to provide scholarships and fellowships to students of commonwealth countries. Under this program the education ministers of commonwealth countries met in Oxford, UK and decided that all commonwealth countries will provide aid to students from other commonwealth countries, since then over 25,000 students have been provided with these scholarships and fellowships.
There is no central body that awards all these scholarships but there is a body by name of national nominating agency that is given responsibility to publish all these scholarships. Individual scholarships are offered by agreements between member countries.UK is the biggest contributor to this overseas scholarships program. The scholarships offered b UK are managed by the Commonwealth Scholarship Commission with financial aid from Department for International Development, and the Foreign and Commonwealth Office. UK provides scholarships at different level to students from developing countries. It provides:
- Scholarships for postgraduate study.
- Split-site Scholarships for PhD students to spend up to one year in the UK.
- Academic Fellowships for staff in developing country universities.
- Scholarships for Master degree students from developing countries under distance learning program.
- Professional Fellowships for mid-career professionals from developing countries
In addition to above mentioned programs many other overseas scholarships program are run by UK government for students from different countries. Students can conveniently search for all these programs on the website of Commonwealth Scholarship Commission.
There are also many more scholarship programs under The Commonwealth Scholarship and Fellowship Plan. These programs are offered under several agreements between home and host common wealth countries. Students form commonwealth countries can search for all these programs over internet. All of scholarships offered under CSFP are generally merit based and there is a tough completion for each award. Apart from scholarships offered by CSFP students can also search for many more overseas scholarships over scholarship search engines available on the internet.