Higher Education Scholarships Toolkit
The purpose of this toolkit is to provide practical guidance (good practices, examples, and resources) for incorporating higher education scholarships into USAID programming.
This toolkit will help users:
- Understand good practices in scholarship programming;
- Design scholarship programming to support development objectives; and
- Improve activity design and implementation of higher education scholarship programming as a way to broadly advance development objectives across sectors.
Seven important questions to ask when designing a USAID higher education scholarship activity
This resource helps USAID Operating Units ask the "big questions" before moving forward with the design of a scholarship activity. It showcases options in terms of size and scope of scholarship programs, as well as to consider ideas that are often an "afterthought", such as working with marginalized students, the length of the program, and the dynamic elements (i.e. extracurricular, diversifying students, alumni engagement).
Former USAID Acting Administrator Gloria Steele’s Higher Education Scholarship Story
ACTIVITY DESIGN AND IMPLEMENTATION
Stages of Implementing a USAID Scholarship Activity: Placing Students at the Center
This resource provides an evidence-based overview of the scholarship program cycle, with a student-centered model. Students often experience programs in ways that activity designers and implementing partners don't always plan for. A step-by-step process for planning, selection, orientation, academic experience and emergency management, preparing for graduation and next steps, and alumni engagement with a lens to both the student experience as well as implementing partner experiences.
Good Practices for Scholarships Embedded in Larger USAID Activities
This resource addresses three main considerations of embedded scholarship programming: (1) considerations for smaller programs (e.g., cohort model), (2) connecting scholarship activities with larger activity objectives (e.g., mentoring, internship and employment support), and (3) monitoring and assessment for scholarship activities within the larger activity goals.
Beyond Financial Assistance: Good Practices for Extracurricular Programming in USAID Scholarship
This resource provides examples of good practices in designing and implementing interventions beyond financial support that support students' academic success and personal development.
Intentionally Designing USAID Scholarship Programming for Inclusion
Building on successes and lessons learned across activities and regions, supported by evidence retrieved from academic knowledge on diversity equity and inclusion, this good practices brief highlights promising approaches to student recruitment and student support in USAID and non-USAID scholarship programming.
Engaging Alumni from USAID Higher Education Scholarship Programming
This resource documents good practices in engaging alumni of USAID scholarship programs towards multiple goals including extending impact of programs, supporting future and current participants, building networks among alumni (within and across programs) and giving examples of "what works".
USAID/Indonesia's Program to Extend Scholarships and Training to Achieve Sustainable Impacts (PRESTASI)
This case study showcases good practices in scholarship programming by highlighting the work of the Program to Extend Scholarships and Training to Achieve Sustainable Impact (PRESTASI) activity in Indonesia, including recruitment strategies, co-funding, leadership training, and alumni activities.
MONITORING, EVALUATION, AND LEARNING
Guidance on Monitoring, Evaluation, and Learning (MEL) in USAID Scholarship Activities
This guide includes (a) reminder of logic model, evaluation strategies, monitoring plans, and other tools for USAID education activities, (b) outline of common ways that scholarships are measured in terms of development and diplomacy outcomes, and (c) ways to learn from mid-term reviews to shift programming for the next cohort.
Compiled Evaluations of USAID Scholarship Activities
This resource is a compilation of evaluations (performance and impact) and other relevant documents (annual reports, ethnographic case studies, participant profiles) to help inform an activity’s MEL approach.
Higher Education Storytelling Toolkit
This toolkit condenses a large body of storytelling and communications resources into an accessible toolkit that is customized around higher education themes and topics. This resource includes scholarship programming, but also extends into the larger higher education portfolio.
Higher Education Success Stories: Sharing Impact on Social Media
This fact sheet derived content from the 2021 Higher Education Storytelling Toolkit. The HE Storytelling Toolkit summarizes a large body of storytelling and communications resources into an accessible resource that is customized around HE themes and topics.
Glossary and Additional Resources
This resource clarifies terms used throughout the toolkit and in USAID scholarship programming. It also offers a section devoted to additional resources for scholarship programming, including links to other governmental and large US foundation scholarship programs.
Download the List of Glossary and Additional Resources
Watch the recording of USAID Higher Education Scholarship Toolkit Launch