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Study in Japan for free in 2023 with these scholarships

Study in Japan
Japan is a popular study destination which offers generous scholarships for international students. Source: Charly Triballeau/AFP

Are you hoping to study in Japan? The country offers numerous scholarships for international students, including the 2023 MEXT Scholarship — a popular scholarship to study in the Land of the Rising Sun. Applications, however, are closing in two days (April 29, 2022). This shouldn’t dampen your spirits or dash your hopes of pursuing an education in Japan as there are other scholarship opportunities available.

Japan has been a popular study destination for many years, with a whopping enrolment amassing 312,214 visa-holding international students registered in the country in May 2019. However, like many other countries, it suffered a massive decrease in student enrolment when the COVID-19 outbreak started.

There are many reasons why international students choose to study in Japan. Many of its universities are world-class — five of its universities are in the top 100 of QS World University Rankings 2022.

The country is also home to exceptional hospitality standards, eclectic fashion, and is also known for its breakthrough innovations which include technological advancements in the automotive, robotics and electronic sectors.

Their borders are also open to students. When Japan eased its border restrictions on March 1, 2022, foreign nationals were allowed to enter the country, with the exception of tourists.

Japan has also been increasing its daily entry cap, from 5,000 to 7,000 in March, and again to 10,000 in April. This spells good news for prospective international students looking to study in Japan in the future.

If you’d like to make your dream of studying in Japan come true, here are three scholarships worth exploring:

Study in Japan

Japan has been raising the entry cap of international arrivals in phases. Source: Philip Fong/AFP

Study in Japan with these three scholarships

Honjo International Scholarship Foundation 2022

This scholarship is open to international students who are looking to study in a Japanese graduate school for a doctoral or master’s degree. This programme accepts all nationalities and research fields.

Scholarship coverage: The scholarship amount varies according to the length of the applicant’s enrolled course:

  • JP¥ 200,000 per month for 1-2 year degrees
  • JP¥ 180,000 per month for 3 year degrees
  • JP¥ 150,000 per month for 4-5 year degrees

Eligibility requirements: Those applying for a PhD programme must be 35 or younger when they start the programme. Students applying for the master’s program must start the course by the age of 30.

Application deadline: April 30, 2022

Joint Japan World Bank Graduate Scholarship Programme (JJWBGSP)

This scholarship offers students a platform to study abroad in many countries, including Japan.

It is open to residents from selected developing countries with relevant professional experience and a history of helping out other countries’ development efforts. JJWBGSP offers scholarships to prospective master’s degree students in key areas of development, including economic policy management, tax policy and infrastructure management.

Applicants must be accepted into one of the 26 programmes offered in universities spanning several continents, including Japan, or their application will be denied.

Scholarship coverage: Full tuition to cover the graduate programme. Return flight tickets at the start and end of the enrolled programme, with an additional travel allowance of US$500 for each trip. A monthly subsistence allowance will also be provided to cover living expenses.

Eligibility requirements: Click here.

Application deadline: For Application Window #2, the deadline is May 27, 2022 (GMT -5 hours, Washington standard time).

Special Scholarship Programme at Kochi University of Technology

The Special Scholarship Programme (SSP) at Kochi University of Technology was established to support the development of advanced research at the university through the contribution of highly capable doctoral students.

Every year, approximately 15 applicants are selected to work on specific research projects which last three years. This programme suits international students who are looking to maximise their knowledge, skill and ability to become a full-fledged researcher.

Scholarship coverage: Exemption from JP¥30,000 entrance examination fee, JP¥300,000 enrollment fee and JP¥535,800/year tuition fee.

Moreover, a living allowance of JP¥ 150,000 is paid as a salary for research project work which supports recipients’ living expenses. A further JP¥ 150,000 is also awarded for travel and initial living costs if the applicant is living outside Japan.

Eligibility requirements: Applicants must adhere to these application conditions.

Application deadline: Sept. 16, 2022