PMI Scholarship: How to get your PMP certification for Free!

pmp scholarships get pmp certification for freeUpdate: Good news – OSP International LLC has doubled its scholarship amount! This means you can get PM PrepCast and Simulator for free, and more! More information below.

Last week Karen Kinsman shared her PMP prep advice. This was especially important given the non-traditional PM environment that Karen operates in. In her post Karen touched upon how she got her entire study investment through PMI scholarship from Project Management Institute – Educational Foundation.

PMI-EF is a boon for people that need PMI scholarship for their PMP certification.

I requested Karen to share some more information, which she gladly did (thank you, Karen!) in the interview below.

Few resource links given in the last section might be useful to choose a scholarship that is suitable for you.

Shiv: Hello Karen, thank you once again for taking time out from your busy schedule to talk about PMP scholarship options that are available. Not many know about a possibility of scholarship for PMP exam. I was pleasantly surprised to see that Cornelius’ OSP Intl too provides PMP education scholarship for people around the world! Can you please share how you came across the scholarship possibility during your study.

Karen: Sure. I was in contact with PMI Education Foundation regarding some other work I have been engaged in with middle & high school STEM educators (science, technology, engineering, math) around training them in PM skills as well as working with them on transferring that knowledge to their students via effective use of Project Based Learning opportunities.

I happened to mention to the person with whom I was corresponding that I was starting the process of preparing for the PMP exam, she told me about the PMI EF scholarships, and encouraged me to apply saying that often scholarships didn’t get used. Why waste donated services/resources??!!

Shiv: Can you please elaborate a bit on how one can go about applying for scholarship for their PMP study.

Karen: Here’s the link to the OSP scholarship I received…through the Rio Grande Chapter here in Albuquerque, NM

The scholarship application took me about 30-45 minutes to complete and essentially asked some questions about my experience, why I was pursuing a PMP credential, etc.

There are several different kinds of scholarships. I was looking, in particular, for one that would provide me both exam prep content and simulated exams.

The simulated exams were extremely helpful especially in the few days leading up to the test. I took shortened versions over and over until I could consistently score over 80% and took two full length timed simulated exams as well.

The full length simulations really helped me be prepared for the format of the actual test situation…AND was extraordinarily helpful in preparing me for the ways in which questions would be asked.

I was able to get used to how questions were worded, at times, to trip you up…just in how they were worded. Things like “what would you do NEXT?” or “which is the BEST choice?” come up often…again PMI-isms you have to be prepared to tackle.

Shiv: A good part of PMESN readers and community members reside outside of USA. Any specific tips for them to get a scholarship for PMP?

Karen: Look carefully at the scholarship listings. Many are available to those outside the U.S. If you have any questions at all, contact the PMI-EF staff. They were very helpful and really wanted to help me navigate the process of applying for a scholarship.

As I understood it, some of the scholarships go unclaimed every year which is too bad. It was SO worth the time and effort to apply for the scholarship.

I work for a non-profit entity which means I don’t have a lot of money leftover each month from my paychecks to pay for expensive prep courses like this AND my organization can’t afford to pay for them either. I would not have been able to access the OSP training course and exam simulator without the scholarship from PMI-EF.

Shiv: You recently shared your PMP journey with PMESN readers. Thank you for that. Your prep experience stands out especially because you come from a non-traditional PM environment. Can you tell our readers a bit about the challenges you faced, if at all, while preparing for your PMP exam.

Karen: That’s a loaded question, Shiv!! The biggest challenge for me in preparing for the test was to suspend my daily reality and recognize I needed to focus on putting myself into the PMI mindset.

I had to really think about what PMI was looking for us to know in each area and what they were expecting for answers (PMI-isms as Rita Mulcahy would call them!)…NOT what I would generally do in my own setting day to day.

Since the organization I direct is very small and definitely not engaged in what you’d call traditional types of projects that PMI focuses on in the PMBOK, we have to adapt tools and simplify a lot of processes to fit our needs while still working to evolve our practices more toward a standard way of managing projects that still parallels the PMI way without completely overwhelming and freaking all of us out!!

Get your head completely out of your day to day way of doing project management…especially if you deviate from how the PMBOK describes how to do PM. Focus on PMI’s way…pound that into your head…study that way…take practice tests that way…create your “brain dump” that way…!

You can go back to your way of implementing project management the moment you walk out of the exam room with a letter that says you PASSED the exam!

Shiv: Thank you so much Karen. This is hugely helpful to many PMP students looking for scholarships to finance their study. Have a great week ahead!

Also read: How Jeff Verdon passed his PMP exam while on vacation!


Here’re links related to Karen’s scholarship reference.

Please note that the project management training scholarship given by OSP International helps you get free access to the popular PM PrepCast and PMP Exam Simulator. This is given every quarter, so don’t worry if you miss out on one – you’ve 4 chances in a year. 🙂

For some of the PMI scholarship you may need to be the local PMI chapter member to be eligible for the scholarship. Please refer to scholarship guidelines carefully.


List of 30 Scholarships
Application timelines
How to apply
OSP International Project Management Training Scholarship
Free course material and simulator for both PMP® and CAPM® exams!


I hope this helps if you are looking for a scholarship for your PMP study. Good luck!

Best regards,


Also read: How I passed my PMP exam with just 2 study resources: Sivaram, PMP

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{ 1 comment… add one }
  • Madeleinesophie Malingu February 18, 2023, 9:48 am

    Very helpful. Thanks.

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