- Everything You Need to Know for International Scholarships for Moroccans
- Student Level
- Paperwork and Documents
- Advice for Moroccan STEM Students for Scholarships
- Advise for Moroccan Humanitarian and Fine Arts Students for Scholarships
- Importance of Work and Extracurricular Activities
- Popular and Proven International Scholarships for Moroccans
- Useful Resources for Scholarships for Moroccans
Since its creation, Lessons and Obsessions always had one goal in mind: providing beneficial information for free. Whether it’s culture or business content acquired via expert interviews or academic research, there’s no gatekeeping information in these places.
So I was motivated when I had the chance to join Opportunities.ma, a community group, social media page, and volunteer organization that shares opportunities that can benefit Moroccans – think of it as an opportunity board on social media.
During my short time there as an interviewer and coordinator, I noticed that one of the most recurring questions we received was about scholarships.
As someone who has –and knows people with– experience with this subject, I wanted to write this guide that clears all misconceptions and prepares you for applying for scholarships.
From terminologies to paperwork to where to find opportunities, this article will cover everything you need to know about international and national scholarships in Morocco.
NOTE: Feel free to navigate this article through the table of contents above. All prices listed below are estimates and are subject to change.
Everything You Need to Know for International Scholarships for Moroccans
To figure out which scholarships you qualify for, you must first know what’s your current level and status.
Generally, you fall under one of these 3 categories/programs.
Undergraduate Student (Bac -> Bac+3)
An undergraduate student is a student who’s pursuing a bachelor’s degree, meaning that they’re working towards a License (Bac +3) – acquiring a DEUG/DEUST (Bac+2) does not qualify.
Additionally, undergraduate scholarship opportunities –which have you study abroad right after obtaining your baccalaureate– are highly competitive and scarce. Since most undergraduate programs only care about your grades and motivations.
There are more partial scholarships for undergraduate students rather than full scholarships.
Graduate Student (Bac+3 -> Bac+5)
A graduate student is a student who has graduated with a bachelor’s degree and is pursuing a graduate degree which is a Master’s (Bac +5).
International scholarships aimed at graduate students are abundant. This means that so long as the scholarship is within your research plan/studies, you have a moderate chance to acquire it with moderate competition.
This is because graduate programs are willing to consider many elements when it comes to picking a candidate. From grades to research plans to majors to volunteer and work skills, program creators go beyond your grades as a criterion for awarding you a scholarship.
Universities and programs of all kinds welcome graduate students either through full scholarships or heavy discounts.
Doctoral Student (Bac+5 -> Bac+7)
A doctoral student is a student who has acquired a graduate degree and is currently pursuing a Ph.D. (Bac +7).
Scholarships for Doctoral students are always available. If the theme of the research correlates to the doctoral student’s research plan and major, they are granted a scholarship with massive benefits like stipends, travel reimbursements, etc.
At this level, it is assumed that you have all the necessary skills and knowledge to pursue a Ph.D. So scholarship awardees base their decision on your research plan as well as your professional experiences.
University laboratories and programs of all kinds actively look to sponsor remarkable doctoral students by offering full scholarships or heavy discounts.
DEUST/DEUG = Associate’s Degree (Bac +2)
When you study for two years in a Moroccan university, you are awarded a DEUST if STEM or a DEUG if not. In international lingo, this is known as an Associate’s degree.
In most cases, this degree alone is not sufficient in both acquiring scholarships or a job, making it insignificant. This is why students who earn an Associate’s degree should continue studying until they acquire a bachelor’s.
License = Bachelor’s Degree (Bac +3)
After defending a short academic thesis –and in some cases an end-of-studies internship– you are awarded a License which is called a bachelor’s degree.
This degree officially marks the end of your undergraduate student status. Instead, when you decide to pursue a master’s, you earn the graduate student title. A bachelor’s degree can increase your chances of landing a scholarship or a job in some cases.
So long as you graduate within 3 years with a +12,00 –or 4 years with a +13,00) average, you have a considerable chance at applying to national and international universities and scholarships.
Master = Graduate’s Degree (Bac +5)
Like its predecessor, a master’s is awarded to you after defending your thesis and doing a 6-month long internship, you are given your Master’s diploma which is known as a graduate degree.
This diploma is usually where most people end their academic careers and get a job. What comes after this step is up to you and your preferences but if you want to go abroad then you have two options:
Option 1: Continue studying towards a Ph.D. and apply for international scholarship programs within your major.
Option 2: Apply for companies abroad and aim to get sponsored for a work visa.
Depending on your work experience, network, and other factors, both options can be great methods of going abroad.
Doctorat = Ph.D. (Bac +7)
The final degree available is a doctorat or a Ph.D. which comes after proposing new research and defending it as well as an internship in some cases. After this point, you have the option to pursue another bachelor’s or graduate degree in a related field or get a job.
For international options, you have the same options as the master’s program.
Paperwork and Documents
Whether you are an undergraduate or graduate, pursuing whatever degree, you will generally need the following papers when applying to any program. However, each scholarship is unique so make sure to read the required documents of each program.
Note: It is assumed that you will be translating the original documents into the required language of each scholarship program. Below, I will list the estimated price of translating each document based on official translation offices.
Degree Certificates = Attestation de Reussite (Ideally with Ranking)
Degree certificates or a scan of the diploma are a must when making your document to apply for scholarships. Before you apply, make sure that you have a scan of every academic you’ve acquired up –with ranking– to your current academic degree.
For example, if you are a graduate student who obtained a bachelor’s degree, applying for a Master’s scholarship, you will need the following documents:
-A scan of your Baccaleureat
-A scan of your Associate’s degree
-A scan of your Bachelor’s degree (in case it has not been obtained at the time of applying to a scholarship, a testifying paper issued by your establishment suffices.)
Regarding the cost of translation, a certified translation office will typically charge you 150 to 250 dh per diploma.
Do not underestimate the importance of recommendation letters when it comes to scholarships as they can make or break your chances.
You should establish deep connections with your teacher (if undergraduate), professor (if graduate), or principal/university dean (for all). Make sure they write detailed and personal letters about you.
A translated recommendation letter will cost you 150dh.
Transcript of Records = Relevee des notes
Another crucial document is a transcript of records of your academic career up to the acquirement of your latest or to-be-obtained degree. Due to their demand, make sure to ask for these papers early on through your university.
For Undergraduate students: Transcript record from 4eme up until Bac.
For graduate students: Transcript record from the 1st semester up until the final semester (S1 -> S6).
As for translating these documents, they will cost you between 150-250dh per paper. For reference, 1 academic year = 2 semesters (for university) or ½ school year (for high school) = 1 transcript of records paper.
Extracurricular Activities and Work Certificates
If there’s anything to take away from this article, then it is this section right here. Please consult “Importance of Work and Extracurricular Activities” to understand their importance. Some programs demand proof of activities like work or volunteering, while others do not. To err on the side of caution, it is best to have these records.
As for translating these documents, they will cost you between 150-250 dh per certificate.
Another important –and costly– document for your scholarship are language certificate. Whether it’s TOEFL (American English), IELTS (British English), TCF (French), or HSK (Chinese), you must pass a language test.
The only problem concerning language tests is their costs. TOEFL is 2490dh (excluding accelerated courses), IELTS is 2600dh, and TCF is 1800dh.
There are some programs that accept alternatives to these language certificates when applicable. You must read between the lines and try to find logical solutions for your case.
For example, Moroccan is a francophone country so a French language test isn’t required. At the same time, if you’ve studied English during high school, then a degree isn’t required. Similarly, TOEFL or IELTS can be alternated (if applicable) by EF SET test that’s free.
Regarding translation, there is no cost so hooray?!
If you’re applying for international scholarships that require going abroad, this is self-explanatory. A passport costs 500dh.
Advice for Moroccan STEM Students for Scholarships
STEM scholarships emphasize grades and technical knowledge. The higher your grades and the more things you know, the more your chances increase for scholarships.
On a similar note, some STEM scholarships might also require proposing a research plan. In this case, students must highlight the impact of this research on both the hosting and home countries.
Finally, volunteering and work experiences, achievements, and extracurricular activities matter as well.
Advise for Moroccan Humanitarian and Fine Arts Students for Scholarships
Humanitarian and Fine Arts scholarships typically require applicants to have a thorough understanding of their purpose, future goals, and the impact of their scholarship program.
At the same time, fine art programs (like illustrators or writers) base their results on artist portfolios; as this type of document highlights the artists’ mindset, workflow, etc.
Similar to the STEM counterpart, volunteering and work experiences, achievements, and extracurricular activities matter as well.
Importance of Work and Extracurricular Activities
As previously mentioned, volunteer and work experiences are extremely important to your development – even more for scholarships.
Demonstrated work experience increases your odds of getting accepted since it shows that you are a developed person. You’ve been in the trenches of late capitalism and corporations, you’ve experienced the hectic life of startups, and you’re able to handle responsibility.
Extracurricular activities and/or volunteering further fortify your passion claims. Sure everyone can say that they’re passionate about impacting their community, but few are willing to demonstrate it through school clubs or volunteering.
As a general rule of thumb, try to do as many things and connect with as many people as possible. Once something latches onto the wall, document that experience to show for proof at any time.
If you are interested in finding and landing opportunities in Morocco, consider subscribing to my weekly newsletter, Lessons and Obsessions, which provides advice for this exact thing.
Popular and Proven International Scholarships for Moroccans
You should have a general idea of what documents to prepare after reading the previous section. The next part focuses on some popular scholarships that a majority of Moroccans aim for.
NOTE: It is recommended to prepare for these scholarships at least 4 months before.
Popular European Scholarships for Moroccans
Europe is the most popular destination for Moroccan students looking to study abroad. Rightfully so, as there are a lot of services and resources –in Morocco– that can help them prepare for studying abroad.
Before checking the country-specific programs listed below, I advise checking out ERASMUS+, a highly extensive full-scholarship master’s program that allows you to continue your education across various European countries.
Given that the program has many variables and joint masters, it is best to do your own research. Just a heads up, Russia and Ukraine were not mentioned due to the current political situation.
NOTE: Make sure to consult your university’s website or ask your university staff – yes, this is possible even for Moroccan universities, there are no exceptions.
Two of the most popular French scholarships are:
–Bourse d’Etudes Eiffel: A master’s or Ph.D. program intended for people aged between 25-30 years. Grantees receive a monthly stipend of more than a thousand euros.
–Erasmus Mundus: Previously mentioned before this section.
Luckily for Moroccans, there are many resources, exchange programs, or opportunities (like interning at a French company and having them sponsor your academic career) to study in France. The Moroccan Campus France website is the website for everything related to this subject.
Unlike France and some other countries listed below, there are many Italian scholarships with no stable or set program. According to the research, they are given by each university or foundation so the amount varies.
As such, it is best to obtain the highest grades possible and hope for the best. To stay up to date with Italian scholarships, you can visit the Moroccan Italian Embassy website.
It is well-known that public German universities are free. However, this makes getting accepted into them fairly competitive — even higher when applying for scholarships for private or publicly-funded scholarships.
The most popular scholarships for Germany are scholarships offered by DAAD which organize exchange programs or fund degree programs by offering monthly stipends of 934€ for Masters and 1200€ for Doctors courses.
Like the other programs, grade matters a lot but they emphasize research plans. Make sure to check out the Moroccan-German embassy for more information.
The United Kingdoms
Most UK master courses last for one year unlike the rest of the world which makes it an attractive option for many. More importantly, the Chevening Scholarship is the most popular option for international applicants.
Essentially, you will be required to apply to three different universities (or master courses) and then repeat the process for the Chevening application. If accepted, you will essentially be given a free ride to the UK with monthly stipends. Check out other programs through your own research or by checking the Moroccan UK embassy website.
Belgium follows a similar scholarship system to that of Italy. Rather than have a popular or set program by the ministry, it is up to universities –and the students– to demand these scholarships.
According to my research, there exist only student discounts for the academic year which you have to apply to. This implies that you need to be a registered student of your desired university. As usual, make sure to contact the Moroccan Belgium embassy website for more details.
Following Italy’s and Belgium’s scholarship systems, the Spanish government does not organize official scholarship programs. Instead, they give universities some spots and leave the responsibility to them.
Given that the system is based on merit, your grades will be the determining factor – especially within competitive universities like the University of Barcelona.
While Hungaria might be an outlier among the other Central European countries, it is a trending destination for Moroccan students. Not only is it cheap and less competitive, the government’s scholarship program is highly attractive.
The Stipendium Hungaricum scholarship is a stipend meant to support students of all levels studying in Hungaria. It covers the tuition fee and provides a monthly stipend as well as a flight ticket for arrival and departure.
Admittedly, the program only works if you are accepted into a Hungarian university meaning that the application and registration fee are covered on your behalf.
However, it is open to prospective and enrolled students meaning you can apply right after being accepted into a university or once you are studying in Hungaria.
NOTE: The Hungarian scholarship usually requires students to study Hungarian when attending the program.
Popular Asian Scholarships for Moroccans
Excluding all Asian regions except East Asia, they are an emerging destination for recent Moroccan scholars thanks to their cheap cost and focus on research rather than high grades.
All the countries listed below follow the structure of one popular scholarship offered by the government then university-specific programs. Similarly, language knowledge also plays a crucial role when applying.
Multiple Moroccan scholars are considering making China their destination country to continue their studies. Rightfully so, as while the language is a barrier, it remains a cheaper alternative than Europe costing between 20,000 Dh – 30,000 Dh.
On top of that, there are a plethora of scholarships ranging from stipends to full coverage to partial support, depending on your Chinese level and grades. Personally, I recommend applying –if not, at least considering– China as a destination to pursue your studies. But do keep in mind that a year of language learning might be necessary.
If you do choose this country, you should sign up either through the official Chinese websites like Campus China or contact a Moroccan studies agency like Tawjeeh (approximately 40,000 Dh for a Master’s).
If you know the Korean language and have above-average grades, South Korea might be your ideal destination. It follows a system similar to that of China and Japan, meaning that official governmental websites are responsible for your application.
The most popular scholarship is the highly competitive Global Korea Scholarship (KGSP), which is a fully-funded program for masters and Ph.Ds distributed among 1300 students.
There are other scholarships (university-specific) as well so do your own research –as there aren’t that many resources– or consult the Moroccan Korean Embassy.
Continuing the foundation set by the previous Asian countries, Japan equally follows the same dynamic. A competitive scholarship is offered by the government for all levels.
For Japan, it is known as the MEXT scholarship. It is a program that accepts undergraduates, graduates, and postgraduate applicants and provides coverage along with a stipend.
Applying for this university is straightforward requiring multiple exams (math, physics, etc.) for undergraduates, a language exam + an interview + research plan for master’s and Ph.D.
There are other scholarships (university-specific) as well so do your own research –as there aren’t that many resources– or consult the Moroccan-Japanese Embassy.
Singapore is an underrated destination for education. It has one of the fastest-growing economies and a strong diploma ranking.
The most popular scholarship is The Singapore International Graduate Award (SINGA). It is a merit-based program intended for students pursuing a Ph.D. Apart from that, you can research individual university-specific scholarships – check the Moroccan Singapore embassy website.
Popular North American Scholarships for Moroccans
Coming in as the most expensive region to pursue your studies, North America is a destination with some of the strongest diplomas and highest-ranking universities.
Money aside, both the United States and Canada boast multiple scholarships (either full or partial coverage) that can ease the cost of studying abroad. However, most of these programs are university-specific or funded by non-governmental organizations.
The United States
By now, if you’ve been reading the article fully, you know that there are countries (like Italy, Belgium, or Spain), that do not offer official governmental scholarships.
Instead, the responsibility is up to each university. None demonstrate more than the United States where hundreds upon hundreds of universities offer partial or full scholarships based on grade, motivation, and research.
Your best bet might be the Fullbright program which offers funding to eligible students. Their criteria depend on grades, work experience, English language abilities, and other aspects.
You can consult the –impressively active and engaging– Moroccan American embassy website for more details.
Canada follows the same system as the United States with university-specific scholarships, so the best advice is to research universities and visit the Moroccan Canadian embassy website.
Interestingly, since Canada is divided into two regions: French-speaking and English-speaking, a unique option is available to Moroccans.
Applying to universities from the French side of Canada usually requires no language test or proof since Morocco is a francophone country. Meanwhile, the English counterpart would most likely require a TOEFL or other English certificates.
Popular MENA Scholarships for Moroccans
Despite the popular belief against the MENA region, there exist countries with above-average university diplomas and rankings. The countries below list the top three MENA destinations for Moroccan students.
Arguably the most popular and affordable destination for Moroccan students is Turkey. It is relatively close to Morocco and offers quality education for an affordable price.
The most popular scholarship is the Turkiye Burslari scholarship which is a merit-based scholarship that functions similarly to the Hungarian scholarship.
Please refer to “Popular European Scholarships for Moroccans” > “Hungaria” for that information.
Similarly, you can consult the scholarship website or study agencies or consult the plethora of resources available.
Another moderately popular destination for Moroccan students is the UAE. Unfortunately, there are no official scholarships offered by the government. Instead, it functions similarly to the USA with each university offering partial or full scholarships for students with high grades.
As always, do your research by checking universities or visiting the Moroccan UAE embassy website.
Useful Resources for Scholarships for Moroccans
By now, you would have likely noticed that I am strongly advising to do your own research when it comes to scholarship. Rightfully so, as not all programs mentioned above might fit your exact case.
Rather than give you a fish, I will teach you how to fish. When I was researching scholarships, these resources helped me out the most.
The Official Moroccan Scholarship Website
Did you know that Morocco has an official website for all available scholarships to Moroccans? It is an effort made by the Ministry of Higher Education and Science and Innovation Research to promote academics.
It is regularly updated and the opportunities listed are interesting. You can find the website here.
Throughout this guide, I’ve made sure to list the links to the official embassies’ websites. They are relevant when it comes to government programs (Hungaria, France, China, Japan, etc.) as they hold all the information you might need.
But at the same time, they regularly share opportunities relevant to that region as it is their job to do so. When I was researching scholarships, I used to do:
1-Type “Your Choice of Country X Here” + Embassy + Morocco in Google
2-Navigate to the “Life in X” or “Education in X” or “Study in X”
3-Rinse and repeat for various countries
A lot of times, you would find that these embassies are sharing opportunities that have not been shared anywhere else – essentially giving an exclusivity advantage.
Your University’s Website
Before you say something like “We are in Morocco, there’s no way my university would do this”, I would beg to differ. If your university is public, it is their duty to share opportunities available to them.
Universities often collaborate and exchange opportunities. You can find exchange programs, special scholarships exclusive to your university’s students, and ERASMUS+ for those interested.
Volunteer and Work Opportunities
Finally, the best thing you can do to increase your chances at obtaining a scholarship –apart from grades and research plan– is to continuously work or partake in extracurricular activities.
I’ve listed the importance of this in a previous section, please consult “Importance of Work and Extracurricular Activities.”
This is self-promotion to an organization I’m currently taking part in. Opportunities.ma originally started as a Facebook group that eventually expanded onto a website and a collaborative effort.
It aims to raise awareness of opportunities and scholarships for all different young adult Moroccans and answer their questions.
From international experiences to internships to paid volunteering, it is everything that a young Moroccan would need to fortify their profile. You can check out their website here or visit their Instagram.
University Clubs and Associations
Another great option is to join your university’s clubs or NGOs to partake in extracurricular activities. Not only will this help you connect with others and build your network, but it give you valuable experience and show your passion.
Popular examples in Morocco include AIESEC, ENACTUS, and others.
Taking Your Shot
In my newsletter, I wrote about how reaching out to Milfaya, one of Morocco’s biggest creators and musicians, led to me interviewing her and writing an article about her and an exclusive look into the Moroccan creator space.
If it wasn’t for me taking that shot, I would have never unlocked that opportunity. Just like that, you can be denying yourself so many opportunities by fearing to take the shot.
You should maintain a confident yes approach to the things you want to do or work on. Simply ask for it and you may find yourself getting the thing that you asked for.
Expanding Your Network
There is no sugarcoating the fact that most jobs or positions are passed on through connections. Maintain and expand your network by being sincere, honest, and helpful and the effort will eventually be paid back to you.
Thank you for reading this guide.
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