Merit scholarships

Merit scholarships 2024 available for international students at the University of Hamburg.

Merit scholarships enable recipients to fully focus on their studies and enhance their skills.

The University of Hamburg offers a merit scholarship program to support exceptional international students and doctoral researchers across all disciplines and degree levels who have demonstrated social engagement and active participation in an international context. Merit scholarships enable recipients to fully focus on their studies and enhance their skills.

To qualify for funding you must:

– Have been enrolled in your program at the University of Hamburg for at least two semesters (one semester for students in two-year master’s programs and doctoral researchers).

– Not hold German citizenship.

– Be ineligible for the federal student loan program.

The maximum monthly funding amount is €850, with individual doctoral researchers potentially receiving up to €1,000 per month depending on funding availability (approximately 2-3 scholarships are awarded per cycle). Merit scholarships are granted for two semesters (totaling 12 months) with the option to reapply. In exceptional cases supported by strong reasoning, the maximum funding period can extend up to three years.

Those who are not eligible for funding include:

• International students who meet the requirements outlined in Section 8 of the German Federal Training Assistance Act (Bundesgesetz über individuelle Förderung der Ausbildung, BAföG).

Application Deadlines

We suggest scheduling an individual advising session prior to submitting your online application. The deadlines for applications are as follows:

April 15th (funding period: October 1st – September)

October 15th (funding period: April 1st – March 31st )

If you have any further questions, please contact the program coordinator. Best of luck with your application!

Online Application

You can access a step-by-step guide on how to submit your online application here: Guide (PDF)    

 Please click the link corresponding to your desired application period and log in using your STiNE ID:

– Application form (deadline: April 15)

– Application form (deadline: October 15)

Once logged in, you will receive an invitation to register and complete your application.

You are required to upload the following documents to the online application portal:

– CV

– Letter of motivation: Please utilize this PDF form. 

Please provide evidence of social and/or intercultural activities, if applicable.

Submit your record of achievements, either through a STiNE printout or a list of course certificates. Master’s students and doctoral researchers should include their final certificate.

Include evaluations from two professors or junior professors at the University of Hamburg. You can use the provided evaluation form template (PDF). 

Only applications that are completed in full and submitted by the application deadline will be considered. Therefore, it is advisable to start gathering your application documents early and have them prepared for uploading to the application portal.

Regarding residence permits, please ensure to submit proof of your residence permit to the program coordinator well in advance and in person before the application period ends. To do so, you can schedule an appointment online or alternatively, send a copy of your residence permit via email to Please note that your documents will not be retained and will be deleted after they have been reviewed.

If you do not possess a residence permit (for example, if you are an EU citizen or for any other reason), please reach out to the program coordinator for further guidance..


Merit scholarships are granted by a committee consisting of faculty members and the ASTA (student council). You will receive notification via email approximately 6–8 weeks after the application deadline. To check the current status of your application, please refer to the online portal.


• Strong to outstanding academic performance

• Demonstrated additional knowledge and skills (such as presentations, publications, awards, and specialized expertise); previous financial support

• Engagement in social and/or intercultural activities (verified volunteer work, for example)

• Applicant’s financial need and social circumstances


Merit scholarships are distributed on the first day of each month during the funding period. Funding starts on October 1st for the application cycle ending on April 15th, and on April 1st of the following year for the cycle ending on October 15th. Scholarships cannot be transferred to a foreign bank account, and academic leave is not permitted during the funding period.

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