More than 400 students from low and middle income families have, through the Sutton Trust US Programme, accessed this funding and are studying right now at US universities.

In Part 2 of the programme, students who apply to US colleges will receive support with their financial aid applications. We also provide bags of guidance to your family so they can start collecting the various documents you’ll need for universities to determine your financial aid package.

Financial aid is an umbrella term which covers grants (money that is a gift and does not need to be paid back), work-study (jobs on campus which students use to earn spending money) and loans (which are offered by the university under student-friendly terms).

On the Sutton Trust US Programme, we work with universities that can meet the financial need of our students on the programme. Dozens of universities will fund the full demonstrated financial need of admitted international students. These are some of the best universities in the US and therefore competition for admission and financial aid is very high. Students admitted on to the programme show potential to be successful in this competition.

Financial aid can be a little complicated as different universities have different ways of running their financial aid. We’ve listed two of the main ways that you can access these funds below.

Types of funding

Need-based financial aid

Universities that offer need-based financial aid calculate how much financial aid you need based on your family’s income and assets. It’s a sliding scale, so the more resources your family has, the less you receive in financial aid, and the fewer resources your family has, the more you receive in financial aid. Most, if not all, of this kind of financial aid will be offered as grants.

Most students studying in the US through the Sutton Trust US Programme receive need-based financial aid.

Merit scholarships

Some universities offer merit scholarships to students. These can be for academic merit, sporting or artistic talent, community service – or a combination of all of these. These scholarships are awarded to the top students rather than those with financial need. Some students from the Sutton Trust US Programme have won some of the most prestigious scholarships available to international students.

Researching funding options

You will need to put in the time to select universities based on the funding they offer international students and/or to apply for external scholarships. The programme will guide you through this process and work with your families to help you get the best possible financial aid package.

What the Sutton Trust US Programme funds

The Sutton Trust will cover the full cost of residentials including the trip to the US. This will include your travel, accommodation costs, food and drink.

The Sutton Trust US programme does not award scholarships or funding for students to study in the US or the UK.

Alumni story

Like many prospective students, funding was a major factor in my college search, so to be awarded a generous full scholarship from Denison alleviated a lot of my stress. It is a beautiful campus in the small town of Granville, Ohio.

Aisling Smith | Denison University class of 2022

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