Generous donors have established scholarships and fellowships awarded to students admitted to the on-campus master’s programs who have demonstrated academic and professional achievement as well as strong potential for leadership in the field of early childhood. These named scholarships and fellowships are highly competitive and no more than a few are granted each year.

To be considered, admitted on-campus students must complete the Erikson and federal financial aid application forms (see applying for aid). International students should submit only the Erikson financial aid application.

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Harris Leadership Fellowships and Excellence Scholarships

These special scholarships and fellowships were made possible by a gift from businessman and philanthropist Irving B. Harris, one of Erikson’s founders and a long-time advocate for young children. The awards are intended to encourage and support students who have made a commitment to the field of early childhood and who are most likely to have a significant impact on the field.

Eligibility: U.S. and international entering on-campus master’s degree students who are recommended by the admission committee.

  • Harris Leadership Fellowships are reserved for students who demonstrate the highest potential for leadership in the field of early childhood. They cover full tuition for Erikson’s 38-credit core on-campus master’s degree program. Candidates must show extraordinary commitment to improving the quality effectiveness, and equity of education and services for young children and their families.
  • Harris Excellence Scholarships are awarded annually to a select number of entering students with excellent academic credentials and a demonstrated commitment to the field of early childhood. They cover 60 percent of tuition for Erikson’s 38-credit core on-campus master’s degree program.

Cari B. Sacks Scholarship

Established in honor of Cari Sacks, an Erikson alumna and longtime member of our Board of Trustees, the Cari B. Sacks Scholarship program is intended to encourage and support students who have made a commitment to the fields of early childhood and family services and who are most likely to have a significant impact on the profession.

The awarding of a Cari B. Sacks Scholarship is highly competitive. Only one incoming master’s degree student will receive this honor each year. Recipients are known as Cari B. Sacks Scholars. The Cari B. Sacks Scholarship covers full tuition for 38 credits in one of Erikson’s on-campus master’s degree programs.

Eligibility: U.S. and international entering on-campus master’s degree students who are recommended by the admission committee.

Barbara T. Bowman Scholarships

Established in honor of Erikson Institute’s cofounder, former president, and current faculty member Barbara T. Bowman, these scholarships are awarded annually to two entering on-campus master’s degree students who have demonstrated a commitment to working with children and families in underserved communities. The scholarships are valued at $4,000 per year for three-year students and $6,000 per year for two-year students.

Eligibility: U.S. and international entering on-campus master’s degree students who are recommended by the admission committee.

Barbara Bowman Fellowship in Early Education and Social Justice

Established to honor Barbara Bowman, Erikson’s co-founder and former president, this award recognizes Barbara’s deep commitment to social justice and her unparalleled impact on the field of early childhood. Recipients are selected for their record of academic success and their demonstrated commitment to social justice and meeting the needs of underserved children and families. The fellowships are valued at $4,000 per year for three-year students and $6,000 for two-year students.

Eligibility: U.S. and international entering on-campus master’s degree students who are recommended by the admission committee.

All scholarships and fellowship awards are contingent upon the student maintaining positive academic standing and meeting all other enrollment requirements, as outlined in Erikson’s Bulletin [PDF], published annually. All fellowship and scholarship recipients are required to submit a completed Scholarship/Fellowship Recipient Biography form at the beginning of the award year, which is used to compile stewardship reports for the respective donors and/or organizations.

Certificate program scholarships

While scholarships and grants are generally not available for students enrolled in the graduate certificate programs, Erikson is extremely fortunate to have generous partners at the local, state and national level who may fund such scholarships on a limited basis from time to time. As these opportunities arise, the availability of scholarships is communicated through our web site, our community partners and direct communication with prospective students.

Teacher candidate scholarships from the State of Illinois

Erikson participates in the Illinois Future Teacher Corps (IFTC) and Minority Teachers of Illinois (MTI) scholarship programs. Administered through the Illinois Student Assistance Commission, these scholarships are available only to Illinois residents seeking teacher certification. The MTI scholarship is limited to minority students. Both programs require recipients to sign a commitment to teach in Illinois and a promissory note. If the teaching commitment is not fulfilled, the scholarship is subject to repayment with interest.

The deadline for applying is March 1. For more information about eligibility and applying, please visit www.collegezone.com.

Ph.D. students

Erikson awards a limited number of competitive doctoral fellowships and assistanceships each year. These are awarded to new students at the time of admission to the program on the basis of academic promise, experience, and research interest.

All other types of financial assistance for doctoral students — e.g., federal or private student loans — are handled through Loyola University Chicago. Questions regarding eligibility for and availability of aid should be directed to Loyola at (773) 508-2984 or [email protected].

International students

International students are not eligible for traditional federal financial aid or need-based scholarships. However, we award a limited number of International Incentive Grants and all international students are considered for the Harris Leadership Fellowships and Harris Excellence Scholarships. For more information, review our information for international students