Awards & Checks

Can my scholarship be made out to me?

The IRS dictates how scholarship funds may be applied. To maintain tax free status of funds, your school may only apply funds to certain expenses through a school. Also, this means ISTS cannot pay funds to you directly. In general, schools apply scholarship funds tax free to tuition, academic fees, books, and equipment a course requires.

What if my scholarship reduces other aid from my school?

It is common in the current academic world for schools to issue need-based financial aid. However, when you receive a new scholarship or grant, it may prompt your school to change your need-based award. In their eyes, your need has changed. If this happens to you, you will need to either negotiate with your school or contact ISTS for the possibility for you to defer the scholarship to another year.

Are scholarships taxable?

Tax laws vary by country, but in the United States, scholarship funds are not taxable if used exclusively for the payment of tuition or textbooks. The scholarship recipient is responsible for taxes that are applied to his or her scholarship award. We recommend you consult your tax adviser for more guidance. You may also consult IRS Publication 970 for further information.

Why do I have to provide my high school transcript?

Only students enrolling as either freshman or sophomore students in the upcoming fall must provide high school transcripts in most cases. For students enrolling as freshman this fall, they are most likely high school seniors now and this will be the only academic documentation we can expect from them other than standardized test scores. Students enrolling as sophomores this fall must still provide a high school transcript. Most students enrolling as sophomores will only be able to show one or two college semesters. Providing your high school transcript displays more academic information for the selections committee to review.

Can I defer my scholarship?

Possibly. Please email us at requesting the deferral and the reason why. The program management team will respond to you promptly.

How do I get a reissue of my check?

If your scholarship check is lost, stolen, or has expired, ISTS can help you by issuing a new one. Just do the following to file that request:

  1. Write a short note explaining the circumstances.
  2. Verify your home address and school in this note.
  3. Include a personal check or money order for $35.00 USD made payable to ISTS.
  4. Mail the check, note, and reissue fee to:      

(Program Name) c/o ISTS

40 Burton Hills Blvd

Suite 170

Nashville, TN 37215

Once ISTS receives your note and reissue fee, we will reissue your check within seven (7) business days and mail it to your home address. Also, please ensure your school and/or address is updated on the "My Profile" section of your ISTS Home Page. We advise sending your materials via a shipping method that has tracking so you can receive confirmation of receipt.

When will my check arrive? 

ISTS disburses scholarship and grant funds twice a year. Check your scholarship FAQ or award details for specific information about your award. Unless stated otherwise, your check will be mailed to your home address listed on your ISTS My Profile page. Academic Year and Fall scholarship checks are disbursed between July and August before your academic year begins. Winter/Spring scholarship checks are disbursed in December before your academic year begins. ISTS will email confirmation to your account email address when your check has been mailed.

Why does my check expire?

A 90-day valid check period is a standard banking practice observed by many companies in order to maintain proper accounting of funds. This also helps ensure that your scholarship check is applied to the appropriate academic term as required by your scholarship provider. If your check has passed the expiration date, don't panic. You can request a reissue of those funds through our Program Support Agent team.

How can I use my funds?

The use of scholarships and grants is restricted by the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) of the United States. Your scholarship may impose more stringent regulations than those listed below. Make sure to check your scholarship FAQ or Award Details for specific information about your award and for documentation you can provide to your school. Scholarships may be applied to the following expenses at an accredited two or four-year institution in the US:

  • Tuition
  • Academic Fees required of all students
  • Books required for specific course load by syllabus
  • Equipment required for specific course load by syllabus
You can review the full text of the IRS policy here.