Many scholarship providers offer both local and overseas scholarships, from which aspiring scholars must choose. While a local scholarship offers you an all-rounded educational experience at home, an overseas scholarship offers you one beyond the local context.
But how do you determine whether a local scholarship or an overseas scholarship is better suited for you? Here are a few key considerations to take note of:
If you are thinking of pursuing an overseas education with a scholarship, you will be assured that most of your finances will be taken care of – such as your air ticket and living allowance. Living and studying overseas can be extremely expensive, and a scholarship will do much in helping you unload the financial burden on your shoulders.
However, scholars would still need to utilise their financial support wisely and be mindful of their expenditure. Splurging on unnecessary goods is certainly not the way to impress your future employer.
The Overseas Exposure
If you are keen to experience a foreign education and culture, an overseas scholarship is the ideal choice. Overseas scholars are given the opportunity to interact with students of diverse cultural backgrounds. This will instil in you a global awareness and appreciation for various diverse cultures.
However, major adjustments would have to be made with an overseas education. These include getting used to living in an unfamiliar environment, and being away from your friends and family for immensely long stretches at a time. The first few months of settling down without emotional and peer support would most definitely be daunting. However, it will push you to grow in maturity and become fiercely independent.
With all that said, consider if you can replicate the same overseas experience with a local scholarship – perhaps through an exchange programme. You would still be able to soak in the experience of being in the midst of a fusion of cultures, without being separated from your friends and family for too long.
A local scholarship will typically require scholars to serve a 4-year bond, while an overseas scholarship would mean having to serve a 6-year bond. If you see the bond as the main attribute deterring you from applying for a scholarship, you may consider applying for the bond-free OCBC scholarship or the various scholarships offered by our local universities.
In addition, the bond period is also contingent on the scholarship type. Mid-term scholarships are usually tied to a bond whose period is half that of a full-term scholarship. Therefore, a mid-term overseas scholarship would only require you to only serve in the sponsoring organisation for three years.
For a clearer perspective of the various scholarships and its types (whether it is overseas or local, or full-term or mid-term) make use of our scholarship comparison table. This allows you to look at up to 20 scholarships side by side and weigh your options easily.