MBA Scholarships At The Leading Business Schools

Business school is expensive – more so every year. Tuition, fees, and living expenses almost never go down year to year, and for the top schools they were always pretty high to begin with.

Not only that, but the ways to pay for an MBA have narrowed in the last two decades. For example, it was once common for employers to help defray (or outright underwrite) the steep price of admission, but these days such arrangements are increasingly rare. Meanwhile, B-schools take greater pride in the diversity of their MBA cohorts which means more under-represented groups, first-generation students, and military students — and these students need more help than the legacies and well-heeled admits of yesteryear.

All of this has led to B-schools offering ever-greater opportunities to offset their big price tags. Dozens — at some schools, hundreds — of need- and merit-based MBA awards are available in the form of scholarships, fellowships, grants, and other awards at the top MBA programs; Poets&Quants has collected them here for easy reference (see page 2). At most schools, MBA admits are automatically considered for awards that can rise to significant portions of the overall cost of the program. The bottom line: For a hard worker, there is always a way to finance an MBA.

Next page: Lists and links for fellowships and other awards at the top U.S. B-schools. 


2023 P&Q Rank School Estimated Total 2-Year Cost* Estimated Total 2-Year Cost – 2022 YOY Change YOY %
3 Stanford GSB $‎ 250,854 $‎ 244,353 $‎ 6,501 2.7%
7 Columbia Business School $‎ 249,518 $‎ 241,237 $‎ 8,281 3.4%
15 New York (Stern) $‎ 244,778 $‎ 243,066 $‎ 1,712 0.7%
1 Pennsylvania (Wharton) $‎ 243,044 $‎ 234,032 $‎ 9,012 3.9%
16 UCLA (Anderson) $‎ 238,989 $‎ 231,291 $‎ 7,698 3.3%
4 Northwestern (Kellogg) $‎ 237,691 $‎ 228,917 $‎ 8,774 3.8%
9 Dartmouth (Tuck) $‎ 237,579 $‎ 236,390 $‎ 1,189 0.5%
2 Chicago (Booth) $‎ 237,222 $‎ 226,917 $‎ 10,305 4.5%
10 UC-Berkeley (Haas) $‎ 232,109 $‎ 226,526 $‎ 5,583 2.5%
6 MIT (Sloan) $‎ 229,175 $‎ 237,993 $‎ (8,818) -3.7%
*MBA1 + MBA2 (2022 + 2023)


How many top-25 U.S. B-schools are now in the $200K club? Nineteen of 27 schools analyzed by Poets&Quants charge tuition and fees and estimate living expenses that, combined over two years, equal or exceed $200K. That’s up from 15 B-schools last year. Four more schools are currently on the threshold of that club, sitting at $196,000 or more. For the 2023-2024 school year alone, 21 of the 27 schools estimate an annual cost in excess of $100,000.

Tuition is the chief culprit in the rising cost of an MBA. The number of U.S. B-schools with tuition over $80,000 rose this year to seven from four, while the number with tuition over $75K grew to 13 one year after doubling to 12. The Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania reports the highest tuition, at $87,370, up about 3% this year and more than 17% since 2019. Across the top 10, the average tuition growth in those five years is 8.9%; across 25 leading U.S. MBA programs, it’s even more: 9.5%.

The average two-year cost for a top-10 MBA is $236,873, up 2.4% from last year when it was $231,420. That’s up from $228,284 in 2021 and $223,750 in 2020 — a nearly 6% increase over four admission cycles. Across all 27 schools, the average cost is $215,619, up 2.3% from last year when it was $210,724 for 26 schools. In 2021, the average cost across 26 schools was $199,544.

In Europe:

  • At HEC Paris, tuition for the two-year program is €98,000 for the September 2024 intake, up from €87,000 in September 2023 (it will be €90,000 for the January 2024 intake). HEC estimates annual expenses to total around €25,000, or just under $28K, so the total student payout will be around €123,000 for the Class of 2026 — which comes out to about $135K for the whole 16-month program.
  • At INSEAD, an MBA program with two intakes, tuition fees for the August 2022 intake were €97,000 ($108,560), up from €91,225 a year earlier; and for the January 2023 intake, €98,500 ($110,239), up from €92,575. INSEAD estimates living expenses at €25,310 at its Fontainebleau, France campus (without a car), which translates to just over $28K, and €32,250 at its Singapore campus, which comes out to about $36K. Total for the INSEAD MBA experience — which is just 10 months long — is therefore as much as €130,700, or around $143K.
  • At London Business School, “tuition fees” are currently listed at £109,700 ($141,636) up in one year from £97,500. This number does not include living expenses, which are estimated by the school to be £30,000 per year — after all, London is one of the costliest cities in the world to live in. Adding all that up brings the grand total to £169,700, or around $220,000 — in line with the most expensive U.S. programs.
  • At IE Business School in Spain, tuition fees are €82,300 ($92,108), up an extraordinary 16% from €71,000 last year, and the total cost of an MBA is €153,300 ($171,570). At Spain’s IESE, tuition fees total €99,500 ($111,358), up from €93,500). Neither school estimates living expenses.


Many schools, but not all, publish data on how many of their MBA students receive aid, as well as the average amounts. At Harvard Business School, for example, 50% of MBA students get aid, with awards ranging from $2,500 to $76,000 per year. The average annual need-based scholarship for Harvard MBAs last year was $42,000, or $84,000 over two years. At Stanford Graduate School of Business, the average fellowship for the class of 2023 was approximately $44,000 per year or $88,000 in total awards in need-based fellowships. Stanford, rare among U.S. B-schools, does not offer merit-based scholarships.

At most U.S. B-schools, contrary to popular misperception, international students qualify for most scholarships and other aid. In Europe, it would be impossible to exclude internationals from eligibility, since they typically account for a vast majority of students — in many cases well into the 90% range.

At INSEAD, where the latest MBA cohort was 92% international, students can apply for more than 150 types of scholarship; about 36% do receive aid, at an average amount of €21.1K (about $23K). Some other top European B-schools:

  • At HEC Paris, whose MBA is 95% international, students receive more than €1,000,000 in aid every year thanks to the work of the HEC Foundation. Visit the school’s financial aid web page for more information.
  • London Business School, whose MBA is 90% international, offers 100 internal MBA scholarships, as well as 38 external scholarships. Visit LBS’ financial aid web page for more information.
  • IE Business School in Spain, which is 95% international, awarded €19M awarded in 2022-2023 to students from more than 100 countries. Visit IE’s financial aid web page for more information.


The availability of scholarships and other awards varies widely across the top U.S. MBA programs. See the next page for a handy reference guide. At the top of the 2023 Poets&Quants ranking, The Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania has a fellowship program in which applicants are judged based on “unique personal qualities and background, academic achievement, exceptional professional development, and community involvement”; every admitted student has the opportunity to be considered. Wharton also offers half a dozen academic fellowships, four entrepreneurial awards and fellowships, four leadership fellowships, real estate fellowships, Whitney M. Young fellowships, and Yellow Ribbon Program grants of up to $20,000 to students with military experience.

At Emory Goizueta Business School, where 50% of the Class of 2024 was international — you have many options to find funding whether you are a domestic or international student. Emory Goizueta offers 40 fellowships, 300 teaching fellowships, and 35 research assistantships; the Goizueta Business School Military Fellowship recognizes one or more current Goizueta MBA students with a fellowship and financial stipend up to $10,000 for each student to serve in a formal role to support the Goizueta Business School in its military recruiting efforts for all graduate level programs. Goizueta also has multiple scholars programs, including the Robert W. Woodruff Scholars, Emory’s most prestigious named scholarship, which includes full MBA tuition and fees and an annual $15,000 stipend guaranteed for the length of the Full-Time MBA degree for four students annually.

(Correction: An earlier version of this story sated that Emory did not offer aid to international MBA students, which is not accurate. Visit here for more information.)

At the University of Notre Dame’s Mendoza College of Business, where international students are eligible for college-funded fellowships, assistantships, grants, or scholarships, nearly all students receive some form of aid: 97% of the Two-Year MBA Class of 2022 were awarded a scholarship. Notre Dame offers 135 fellowships in all, including Meyer Fellows, Brogan Fellows, and Forte Fellows, and has a strong Yellow Ribbon Program that offers significant benefits to qualifying veterans: For veterans who are 100% eligible, the university contributes $17,500 to be matched by the Veterans Administration, a total amount that can exceed full tuition and can also include other benefits such as books and additional stipends.

Next page: A complete list of the scholarships, fellowships, and other aid available at the leading U.S. B-schools.

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