Tuition and financial aid at Carnegie Mellon University -Africa, KigaliCMU-Africa was established in 2011 and is the only U.S. research university offering its master’s degrees with a full-time faculty, staff and operations in Africa. Born out of a partnership between CMU and the Government of Rwanda, CMU-Africa is addressing the critical shortage of high quality engineering talent required to accelerate development in Africa—home to the fastest growing workforce in the world.

CMU-Africa’s vision is to educate and empower the next generation of African leaders and innovators by delivering a world-class educational experience. Our mission is to produce creative and technically strong engineers, who have been trained in the African context, and prepared to make transformative impact in their communities and the world.

CMU’s presence in Rwanda provides a platform to engage in Africa’s most significant opportunities and challenges through world-class education and contextually-relevant research.carnegie mellon kigali

What is the tuition at CMU-Africa?

If you are an African national enrolled at the Kigali location, the cost of tuition is $16,000 per year through a combined financial aid package from CMU and the Government of Rwanda. However, applicants from the East African Community (EAC) are eligible for a 50% scholarship offered by the Government of Rwanda, making the cost of the program $8,000 per year.

If you are a non-African national, the cost of tuition is set by Carnegie Mellon University’s College of Engineering, because students obtain exactly the same CMU master’s diploma as the students at CMU’s Pittsburgh campus. Tuition for these students is $46,000, and should be compared to tuition at other world-class institutions.

Students will find the total cost of the programs may vary based on their chosen master’s program and the number of semesters they take to complete the degree requirements.

What is included in tuition?

Tuition includes:

  • All courses offered by faculty in Kigali
  • All courses available via distance learning, or at the Pittsburgh or Silicon Valley (MSECE program only) campus
  • Personal laptop for each student
  • All textbooks
  • Access to online libraries
  • Social events during the year
  • Potential to spend a semester studying abroad in Pittsburgh

Financial Aid

What kinds of financial aid does CMU-Africa offer?

CMU-Africa realizes the cost of graduate education is a significant investment, and offers several forms of financial aid to students enrolled in the CMU-Africa programs. To be considered for any form of financial aid, you must first obtain admission to one of CMU-Africa’s graduate programs.

Learn about the sources of financial aid offered by CMU-Africa and its partners:

  • Mastercard Foundation Scholars Program Eligible students must be a citizen of an African country, have an exceptional academic record, come from a disadvantaged background, have demonstrated leadership potential, have demonstrated commitment to give back to their community, and have demonstrated commitment to transforming Africa.
  • The Smart Africa Scholarship Fund Eligible students must be a citizen of one of the Smart Africa member states, and have an exceptional academic record.
  • Mandela Institute for Development Studies (MINDS) Eligible students must be a citizen of an African country and reside in any African country, have obtained at least 70% in each subject/course in the last two completed years of study, and demonstrated leadership potential.
  • Government of Rwanda (GoR) Scholarships Eligible students must be a citizen of any country in the East African Community.
  • Government of Rwanda (GoR) Loans Eligible students must be a citizen of Rwanda.
  • Innovators Forward Fellowship Fund (IFFF) Eligible students must be a citizen of any African country, have an exceptional academic record, and demonstrated leadership potential.

How do applicants receive financial aid?

There are no financial aid applications before admission. All admitted students will be considered for financial aid, though not all students will receive it.

The sponsoring institution, director of CMU-Africa or the scholarships selection committee  will decide on the duration and amount of the scholarships.

Financial aid information

Download a complete table of all scholarships available, eligibility criteria and guidelines for how to apply.

Where can students find additional scholarships?

Since the CMU-Africa pool of funding is limited, CMU-Africa cannot offer aid to all students.

You are encouraged to be proactive in looking for other sources of financial support, such as: employer support, private financing through local banks, international scholarships and contacting their local Ministry of Education, or similar authorities for financial support. CMU-Africa will provide documents to support you in these endeavors.

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