Funding a massage therapy education can be a challenge. Several organizations sponsor grants, scholarships and giveaways to help defray the cost of school and promote excellence in the industry. Contact each organization for information about deadlines and the application process.
MT Dream Practice Giveaway
Co-sponsored by BIOTONE, MASSAGE Magazine and other industry partners, this giveaway is open to enrolled massage therapy students and practicing massage therapists. The prize package includes cash, and a selection of tools and services that may include business tools, technology, coaching, massage equipment, accessories and products to help establish a highly successful massage therapy practice.
MASSAGE Magazine Giveaways
MASSAGE Magazine frequently partners with a massage or spa industry vendor, who provides a prize package to one winner. Prizes may include products or services.
MASSAGE Magazine Sample of the Month
MASSAGE Magazine partners with a massage or spa industry vendor, who provides a free sample to massage therapists. Samples may include products or services.
Ultimate Business Starter Package
This award is offered several times each year by Massage Warehouse, which provides the kit as a prize during many annual events, including the American Massage Therapy Association's KickStart Student Program, the World Massage Conference, and the Alliance for Massage Therapy Education's Educational Congress. The scholarship includes many products to help a new therapist get started in massage, including a massage table and chair, linens, carrying cases and lubricants.
Beauty Changes Lives Foundation—Massage Envy Spa Massage Scholarship
To apply for one of six $1,500 tuition scholarships, students must be enrolled in a massage therapy program at a school that belongs to the American Association of Cosmetology Schools. The scholarships are funded by Massage Envy Spa.
Bob King Massage Therapy Student Scholarship
This $5,000 scholarship is awarded once a year to a student who has demonstrated excellence in the study of massage therapy and devotion to the profession. Applicants must be enrolled in or admitted to a 500-hour minimum entry-level massage therapy program at the time they submit the scholarship application. This scholarship is funded by the American Massage Therapy Association.
Mary Tabacchi Scholarship
Funded by the International Spa Association (ISPA) Foundation, this $5,000 scholarship is awarded annually to a junior, senior or graduate student enrolled full-time in a bachelor's or master's degree program related to the spa industry, and pursuing a career related to spa management. The award includes free registration, along with travel stipend and hotel accommodations, for the ISPA Conference & Expo; a one-year ISPA student membership; and a one-year mentorship. Read about the 2016 winners here.
Student Grants & Awards
Successful Hands Grant Program
Sponsored by Biofreeze, Massage Envy Spa and Bon Vital', this program was established in 2014 to help students prepare for a career in massage therapy. Applicants must be currently enrolled in massage therapy school and submit a 200-word essay. Eight grants of $1,000 each were awarded in 2016; each winner's school also received a $500 grant and $500 product package.
Student Case Report Contest
The Massage Therapy Foundation offers this contest as a way to help students develop their research skills and research literacy. Cash prizes are awarded, contingent on publication of the case report.
Research Grants & Awards
Dr. Howard Murad Research Grant
Funded by the International Spa Association (ISPA) Foundation and made possible through a donation from Howard Murad, M.D., this grant funds research into stress.
Ruth Stricker Spa and Wellness Award
Funded by the International Spa Association (ISPA) Foundation, and named for and funded by Ruth Stricker, founder of The Marsh, A Center for Balance and Fitness, this award has a special focus on how spas can enhance wellness and health.
Graduate Student Scholarships
Fascia Research Congress scholarship
Several scholarships are available for graduate students, undergraduates and clinicians who have registered for the Fascia Research Congress. Scholarships are funded by the Ida P. Rolf Research Foundation and the Fascia Research Society, and new awards may also be offered this year.
Massage Therapy Foundation Community Service Grants
Intended to promote partnerships between massage professionals and the community, these grants of up to $5,000 are given to organizations providing massage to people who would otherwise have limited or no access to it. Eligible organizations will have been in existence at least one year; be tax-exempt; provide service to the community; and have a qualified staff member in charge of the program.
Massage Therapy Foundation Research Grants
These grants of up to $30,000 are awarded to support research studies investigating the health benefits of massage therapy. To apply, a researcher must have relevant experience in the chosen area of research, and be associated with a qualified sponsoring organization, such as a university.
Small Business Grants
Governments at the local, state and federal levels offer grants to small businesses. Some feature low-interest loans, economic development grants or venture capital. The U.S. Small Business Administration has consolidated information about these grants, presented in a searchable database.
Find More Massage Therapy Scholarships and Grants
Many massage schools and other organizations offer targeted scholarships. Search Google for information on scholarships available to students enrolled at specific schools, or to residents of certain geographical areas.
Information last reviewed/updated 11-11-2016.