DSI Students Engage in Service Scenario Prototyping for the NYC Mayor’s Office for Economic Opportunity

DSI / Social Design

MFA Design for
Social Innovation

136 W 21st St,
5th Fl.
New York, NY 10011
(212) 592–2205



Financial Aid

If financial aid is needed, we encourage applicants to apply for FAFSA as early as possible.

International Students

Students attending school on a visa do not qualify for federal and state Financial Aid. There are some alternative loans that you can apply for with a co-signer who is a U.S. Citizen. We also recommend applying for scholarships through your local agencies. You may research scholarship opportunities at, a scholarship search engine which focuses on international students.

SVA Resources

Paul Polak Scholarship to DSI
DSI offers a $10,000 Paul Polak Scholarship to a student in the class of 2021. Paul has been a friend, advisor and inspiration to our program, and to the millions of people around the world whose lives he has changed through his work to end poverty. Applicants to DSI will automatically be considered for the Paul Polak Scholarship; no separate application is required.

For those who qualify, SVA offers a Federal work-study program with on-and off-campus employment opportunities, most of which are in the field of the student’s choice. Departments on-campus include areas such as the Library, Film Library, or Financial Aid offices.

The Alumni Scholarship Award
Offers support for the direct costs of completing a final thesis project. The grant ranges from $500 to $2,000 based upon academic and artistic merit as determined by a review panel, and financial need as demonstrated by the project budget. The average award is expected to be $1,000. Students may request amounts in increments of $500 (i.e. $500, $1,000, $1,500, $2,000). Application information is distributed via email in the fall semester.

The SVA Matching Scholarship
Available to full and part time undergraduate and graduate students. Based on the student’s financial need, as determined by the completion and submission of the FAFSA. SVA will match 25% of any outside scholarship payable to SVA, up to $2,500, that a student obtains for enrollment at SVA.

Internships and Freelance Opportunities
We receive a number of internship and freelance opportunities available through the fall, spring, and summer. While the department makes these opportunities available to students, applications must be negotiated directly with the employer.

DSI has various assistantships that become available every year, depending on department needs.

Online resources:

The Foundation Center
Provides a list of graduate scholarship resources in all disciplines. International students are eligible.

An easily searchable database of scholarship and award opportunities, and a set of resources for both domestic and international students.

One of the most popular search sites for scholarships, which, with a quick registration you can search for free. By entering information about yourself and your areas of study, the site matches you with scholarship opportunities.

College Board’s Scholarship Search
Bears some similarities to Fastweb in that you can build a personalized profile to help you find scholarships, plus you can use online calculators for estimating your Expected Family Contribution for financial aid.

IEFA is the premier resource for financial aid, college scholarship and grant information for US and international students wishing to study abroad. This site has college scholarship search and grant listings, plus international student loan programs and other information.

Global Student Loan Corporation
The Global Student Loan® is a comprehensive education loan for international and distance learning students that does not require a co-signer from another country.

Published by the creator of Fastweb and FinAid, this site provides guidance for international students, from college admissions and scholarships to visa and passport information.

The National Endowment for the Arts
Recognizes design’s ever-present role by funding activities across the design disciplines that encourage, preserve, and disseminate the best in American and global design and its impact on communities.

Knight Foundation
Supports transformational ideas that promote quality journalism, advance media innovation, engage communities and foster the arts. We believe that democracy thrives when people and communities are informed and engaged.

Worldstudio AIGA Scholarships
Benefits minority and economically disadvantaged students who are studying the design/arts disciplines in colleges and universities in the United States.

Design Trust for the Public Space Fellowships
Awarded to qualified professionals whose work will complement the Design Trust’s specific programs at hand. Fellows have included architects, urban planners, journalists, preservationists, photographers, and graphic artists. Fellows are offered a lead role on projects designed to have a substantial impact on New York City.

Sappi Ideas that Matter
Since 1999, the program has awarded $13 million worldwide to designers around the globe to support and transform creative ideas into a powerful force for social good. It is the industry’s only grant program aimed at helping designers contribute their talents to the charitable activities they care about most.

The New York Foundation for the Arts, NYFA
Offers a variety of grants to artists living and working in the state of New York.

The Art Deadlines List
Includes contests, grants, scholarships, fellowships, jobs, and internships in arts and design.

Toptal will award five scholarships to aspiring female leaders in five global regions: Africa, the Americas, Asia, Europe, and Oceania. Each winner will receive (US)$10,000 and a year of weekly one-on-one mentoring by a Toptal expert.
For more information and to apply, go to:
Application deadlines depend on which region the applicant lives in. Application timelines are available on the scholarship website.
136 W 21st St,
5th Fl.
New York, NY 10011
(212) 592–2205