Fulbright scholarship or Fulbright program is a highly competitive international educational program designed to provide funding to encourage educational opportunities among students, professionals, scholars and teachers. The scholarship was established in 1946 under the legislation introduced by Senator J. William Fulbright.  The Fulbright scholarship operates in more than 155 countries, and has provided grants to approximately 310,000 students so far. Every year, it provides 8,000 merit-based grants to people across the world.


The Fulbright grants are provided for various types of studies and research in the United States and other countries:


Fulbright scholarships for students:


The Fulbright scholarships are provided for both the US students who want to study in other countries and the students from foreign countries who want to study in the US.


For the US students to study abroad

The major grants provided for the US students to go abroad for higher studies are:

a)  Fulbright US Student Program: This program offers grants to students graduating from any US institute to conduct an individually designed study or research project abroad or to teach English abroad.

b)  Fulbright English Teaching Assistant (ETA) Program: This program places fresh graduates and young professionals in different countries as English teaching assistants in primary and secondary schools or universities. The program duration is from six months to one year. In order to apply for the program, the candidate needs to have at least a bachelor’s degree. The candidates with doctoral degree are not eligible to apply. The candidate must also have proficiency in the native language of the host country.

c)  Fulbright- Clinton Fellowship: The Fulbright-Clinton Fellows get an opportunity to work in the foreign government ministries and gain hands-on experience with the public sector along with carrying out academic research.


For international students

The Fulbright scholarships and grants provided to the international students are:

a)  Fulbright Foreign Student Program: This program provides opportunities to graduates and young professionals from abroad to study, conduct research or teach their native language in the US. The application process, details and the grants vary from country to country. However, the selection of the candidates is based on the same criteria such as:

i)     Academic qualifications

ii)     Leadership qualities

iii)    Grant availability

iv)     Project feasibility

The Fulbright scholarship opens approximately 15 months before the start of the grant period and the deadline is 11-12 months before the grant starts.


Fulbright scholarships for scholars:


The Fulbright Scholarships for scholars are provided to both scholars who wish to go to a foreign country from the US and to the scholars from a foreign country who wish to come to the US.


For the US scholars to go abroad

The major programs are:

a) Fulbright US Scholar Program: The program provides opportunities to the US scholars, faculty, artists and professionals to go to a foreign country to lecture or to conduct research up to one year.

b) Fulbright Specialist Program: The program provides opportunities to the US professionals and faculty to serve in institutional planning, faculty development and expert consultants on curriculum in academic institutions abroad for 2-6 weeks.

c) The Fulbright- Hays Program: This program provides grants to pre-doctoral students, post doctoral faculty, administrators and K-14 pre-teachers for research and training abroad on non-Western languages and areas related to that.


For international scholars

The Fulbright scholarship is also provided to the scholars from abroad to come to the US.

Fulbright Visiting Scholar Program: This Program provides opportunity to 850 scholars from 100 countries to conduct post doctoral research in the US for six months to one year. The candidates must require a doctoral degree or equivalent professional training and work experience. He/she should also have proficiency in English language to carry out the project.


Fulbright scholarships for professionals

For the US professionals

a) The Fulbright- US Student Program: This program provides fellowships to students and artists from the US to study abroad for one year. The program also includes English Teaching Assistant component.

b) The Fulbright- Clinton Fellowship Program: This program provides professional placements for the scholars in foreign government ministries with an aim to provide hands-on experience in public sector in a foreign country.

c) Fulbright European Union Scholar- in Residence (EUSIR) Program: The aim of the program is to strengthen the US expertise in EU affairs. This program brings scholars and faculty from the European Union countries to the US campuses to take lectures and conduct research and studies.


For the professionals from abroad


Hubert H. Humphrey Program

The Hubert H. Humphrey Program: The Program is aimed to provide an opportunity to the most accomplished young and mid-career professionals from developing countries to come to the US for a ten-month non-degree graduate study. The program targets scholars from policy making, planning, administration and non-governmental organizations.

The eligibility criteria for Hubert H. Humphrey Program:

  • An undergraduate or bachelor’s degree

  • A minimum five years work experience

  • Minimal or no work experience in the US

  • Excellent leadership skills

  • A record of community public service

  • English language proficiency


Also Read:

Scholarships for engineering students to study abroad

Major scholarships for management courses abroad



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