The best scholarships for international students in the Netherlands

Apart from being awesome at many things such as high tech inventions and changing the future via smart innovations, the Netherlands is also a good choice when it comes to education.

In fact, the Netherlands is right up there with Germany and the UK as far as top education destinations for international students are concerned. It has some of the best universities in the world offering internationally recognized certifications and a whole host of scholarships for international students.

But, if you feel a bit lost, fear not. With our help, you’ll soon know everything you need about scholarships in the Netherlands. Which scholarships in the Netherlands are the best for you and what they are all about? Let’s jump in.

Scholarships by the Netherlands and EU Governments

The Holland Scholarship

If you are from a non-European country, then you are probably aware how high the fee costs are. To make things easier, in 2015 the Dutch government introduced the Holland Scholarship.

This scholarship is meant for international students who don’t come from the European Economic Area, or EEA. It requires that the students intend to pursue a Bachelor’s Degree or Master’s Degree at universities in Holland and that the universities they choose are participating members in the program.

The scholarship is worth 5,000 euros and will be awarded to qualifying students in the first year of their studies in full. So no more sleepless nights spent on thinking about money issues!

Erasmus Mundus

Erasmus Mundus scholarships are quite popular across the Netherlands and a good number of Dutch universities participate in study programs funded by Erasmus Mundus. These scholarships cater to these specific study programs and are meant to finance the participation of international students in these programs while in the Netherlands.

MENA Scholarship Programme (MSP)

This scholarship was designed especially for professionals from countries like Algeria, Egypt, Iraq, Jordan, Lebanon, Libya, Morocco, Oman, Syria and Tunisia to do a short course in the Netherlands.

P.S: MSP is not currently open to professionals applying from Syria. Applicants with the Syrian nationality may apply if they are residing and working in one of the other MSP countries in the list

Netherlands Fellowship Programme

This scholarship prioritizes female applicants and applicants from Sub-Saharan Africa. To add, once you have finished your study programme, you are an NFP alumnus. This has some perks such as the opportunity to participate in ‘refresher’ courses.

That’s not all: You can also join the Holland Alumni network to interact with fellow graduates. Nice!

Orange Tulip Scholarship Programme

If you come from Brazil, China, India, Indonesia, Korea, Mexico, Russia, South-Africa and Vietnam, this could be the scholarship for you!

Your home university needs to be a participant in the programme, with scholarships designed to allow talented students to study in the Netherlands.


Stu Ned is a scholarship for Indonesian professionals to study a Masters, short course or training programme in the Netherlands.

There are two modules. In principle all programmes offered by Dutch higher education providers can be eligible:
•    Master programmes: With a duration of fewer than two years, and with a clear relation to the objectives of the StuNed programme.
•    Short Courses: With a duration of more than 2 weeks and less than 12 weeks with a clear relation to the objectives of the StuNed programme.

Sino-Dutch Scholarship

This programme is for talented Chinese students to study or do research for at least one academic year in the Netherlands. Also formerly known as the China Programme. Keep in mind that this can be for during or after your study in China. So, huzzah!

Scholarships by Dutch Universities

University of Maastricht

The University of Maastricht has the High Potential Scholarships program that caters to highly talented international students from outside of the European Economic Area. This scholarship allows them to follow any graduate programme for professionals or regular master’s program at the University of Maastricht. The only exception is the School of Business and Economics. The scholarships are quite comprehensive and cover the tuition fee, monthly living expenses, and the cost of acquiring a visa.

Leiden University

Leiden University offers the Excellence Scholarship Programme, which is open to international students from within the European Union and the European Economic Area and who are pursuing a Masters in Art, Masters in Science, and a Masters in Law programme offered at Leiden University. The scholarship programme can come in one of three forms: 10,000 euros of the total tuition fee, 15,000 euros of the total tuition fee, or the total tuition fee less the home fee.

Utrecht University

The University of Utrecht offers the Excellence Scholarship. This scholarship caters to outstanding students who would like to pursue a Bachelor’s Degree or Master’s Degree at the university in any one of a set of select fields. There are two possibilities when getting the scholarship: you can either get it in the form of full tuition fees or full tuition fees plus 11,000 euros to cover living expenses.

University of Groningen

The University of Groningen offers the Erik Bleumink Fund Scholarship, which covers any Master’s degree programme at the university lasting one or two years. It is a very comprehensive scholarship and covers the tuition fees, the cost of books, the cost of international travel, living expenses, and the cost of health insurance.

University of Amsterdam

The University of Amsterdam offers the Amsterdam Excellence Scholarships for students from outside the European Union who are exceptionally talented. The scholarships cover eligible Master’s programmes at the university and are worth 25,000 euros in full, covering both tuition fees and monthly living expenses.

University of Delft

The University of Delft has a large number of scholarship programmes that cater specifically to international students. One of the most prestigious of these programmes is the Justus and Louise van Effen Scholarship, which caters to exceptionally talented international master’s students who would like to pursue their Master’s Degree in Science (MSc) at the University of Delft. The scholarship is comprehensive and covers both tuition fees and monthly living expenses.

Work and Study Opportunities

While in the Netherlands, you may be able to work as you study. This certainly won’t be able to pay your entire tuition fee, but it might help to cover some of your living expenses, such as the cost of food and other things.

In fact, while in the Netherlands, it is rare to find a scholarship that covers full tuition plus full living expenses. Usually, it is the living expenses which aren’t fully covered. You should, therefore, be willing to work and study in order to cover your own living expenses.

Considering how intense study can be at a Dutch university, it is understandable that you might have trouble finishing your assignment or research paper and might need homework help online. While I was studying in the Netherlands, the workload was pretty intense sometimes and I even considered hiring a service to write my research paper.

Mostly it would give me practical help on how to start a research paper writing assignment, getting started is half the work sometimes, but also to take some of the academic workload off so I could spend some time working to raise some money to cover living expenses. Other students borrowed money to pay for college. Others would just double-down and study intensely during the exam-periods, which I ended up doing. Do what best suits you of course!

These are just some of the scholarships available for students studying in the Netherlands. With so many options, it is no wonder students love to study in this beautiful country! You too can try your luck by applying for these scholarships. You never know, they might be your ticket to a bright future.

Feature Image: Buro Millennial/Pexels


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