Start your financial planning as early as possible to assess what you can afford. If you and your family cannot pay the full cost of attendance, which includes tuition, fees and living expenses, then you should apply for financial aid. Not all U.S. universities offer financial aid to international students, so it is important that first and foremost you apply only to universities that you can afford or to universities that offer financial aid to international students.
Financial Aid is an investment in the student. And the key to receiving financial aid is to show that you are a good investment. Show that you are smart. Show that you can be successful in the future. Show that you will be an active member of the campus community.
Make your application as good as possible!
Each piece of your application should say “I'm smart –really smart!”. A good application includes excellent SAT or GRE scores; an excellent TOEFL score (usually above 100); a strong academic record; and a statement of purpose that clearly demonstrates how you set yourself apart. Additionally, undergraduate applicants should be involved in volunteer and community activities, while graduate applicants should have research or work experience in the field of study.