Graduate International Cost & Scholarships

Financing your education at Central Michigan University is a good step for investing in your future.

We appreciate how hard you work to reach your educational goals. That is why we want to help you find ways to cover your tuition costs through awards, scholarships and opportunities to work as an international graduate student. 

Cost of attendance for international graduate students

The table below provides the estimated minimum cost of living in the U.S. and studying at Central Michigan University for 9 months (one academic year). These estimates do not include the cost of living and studying in the summer. If you plan to remain in the U.S. during the summer, you will need to ensure that you have additional funds for tuition and fees, living expenses and miscellaneous expenses.

The United States government requires that Central Michigan University obtains verification of financial support from all students requesting Certificates of Eligibility (I-20s). F-1 students are required to take a full-time course load each fall and spring semester (12 credits for undergraduate and 9 credits for master’s, MBA, doctorate).

The figures below are an estimate for costs like tuition, fees, books, living expenses and required health insurance for academic year 2024-2025:

Estimated expenses for 2024-2025 academic year

Tuition & Fees*$18,450$15,930$16,110$19,890
Housing & Food$10,751$10,751$10,751$10,751
Expenses (includes 
books, incidentals and personal expenses)
Health Insurance$1,550$1,550$1,550$1,550

*Based on a 18-credit-hour per year load (master’s, MBA, doctorate)
The international rate applies to students who are not eligible for the U.S. resident tuition rates, as outlined by the 
CMU Resident Status Policy.
Note: The president may vary these tuition rates according to cohorts, markets, programs, locations or terms of contracts.

For more details about tuition and fees, please see the Cost of Attendance page.

Dependents: You must submit proof of additional funds in the amount of 5,000 for each dependent spouse and $2,500 for each dependent (minor) child who will accompany you to the U.S.

Scholarships for international graduate students

Out-of-State Tuition Merit Award

The Out-of-State Tuition Merit Award is available for international graduate students who meet all three of the following requirements. Students who meet all the requirements will be eligible to receive the domestic tuition rate. The requirements are:

  • Cumulative undergraduate GPA of at least 3.0 on the U.S. 4.0 scale.
  • Graduate Records Exam (GRE): Verbal score of at least 157 and Quantitative score of at least 152.
  • Graduate Management Admissions Test (GMAT): Minimum score of 600.
  • Proof of English Proficiency (required only from non-native speakers of English) TOEFL: Minimum score of 100 (ibt) or IELTS score of 7.

*Please note that other English proficiency tests are not considered for scholarship qualification

To request an award, complete the  Graduate Domestic Tuition Award Request and email it to or call 989-774-1619 if you have any questions.

*MBA and MSIS students receive a special reduced tuition rate and are not eligible to receive this scholarship.

Neighboring Regions Merit Award

The Graduate Neighboring Regions Merit Award is available to graduate students who meet the following requirements. Students who meet the requirements will be eligible to receive domestic tuition. The requirements are:

  • Students from Ontario, Canada.
  • Cumulative undergraduate GPA of at least 3.0.

To request an award, complete the  Graduate Domestic Tuition Award Request and email it to or call 989-774-2796 if you have any questions.

*Professional students in the School of Medicine are not eligible for this award.

Legacy Tuition Award

Newly admitted international graduate students with a parent or grandparent who earned a degree from CMU may receive the Legacy Tuition Award for resident tuition throughout the duration of their academic program. Applicants must complete the section of the admission application that asks for information about the parent or grandparent who attended CMU.

Other scholarships

    Scholarship Universe is a service that matches you with a wide variety of scholarships. You answer questions about yourself and it connects you with scholarship opportunities you can apply for at CMU and from other external source

    Scholarship Universe

    Many of our academic departments offer special scholarship opportunities.

    If you have any questions or would like more information about department scholarships please contact the department directly.

    View Departmental scholarships

    Many scholarships are offered by a variety of non-university affiliated community and private organizations such as fraternal organizations, civic or religious groups, professional or governmental organizations, or private foundations. These scholarships are usually awarded based on academic merit or some special talent, such as athletic or musical ability. You can find information about outside scholarships by using some of the free scholarship searches on the Internet and researching scholarships available in your local area.

    Advice for searching for scholarships:

    • Do not pay to apply for a scholarship.
    • Do not pay for any kind of “processing” fee.
    • Begin your scholarship search a year before you’ll need it.
    • Be careful about providing private information.
    • Check with your school guidance department and local organizations. Search the internet. Many scholarships are found simply by exploring a personal interest.

    Work opportunities

    Graduate assistantships

    Academic departments provide graduate research, teaching and administrative assistantships. Each graduate assistant works for an individual department or another approved unit within the university. In return, the student receives tuition waivers and stipends. Both full-time and part-time graduate assistantships are available for international students.

    Students must apply directly with the department that houses their academic program after they have been admitted. 


    Campus employment

    Working on campus is another way to earn money while studying at CMU. International students are permitted to work on campus up to 20 hours per week. You are able to apply to jobs after you arrive on campus and obtain the necessary work permits. 

    The U.S. government prohibits international students from working outside the university. Working on-campus is another way to earn funds. However, on-campus employment is limited and part-time and should not be considered a significant source of income to pay for your educational expenses.