The Fulbright Program, sponsored by U.S. Department of State, is the largest U.S. international exchange program. Its goal is "fostering leadership, learning and empathy between cultures." Each year more than 1,500 students receive a Fulbright U.S. Student Grant to live and study, or work as teaching assistants, in one of more than 140 countries abroad. Fulbright awards are in nearly all fields and disciplines, including the sciences, professional fields, and the creative and performing arts.
There are several U.S. Student Fulbright grant types:
Full Grants. Grantees conduct independent study or research, work with local nonprofit organizations, study towards a degree, or conduct or other projects, including in the creative and performing arts.
English Teaching Assistantships. ETAs in over 50 countries assist in teaching conversational English to grade school, high school, or college students. ETAs assist in the classroom and lead conversation for 20+ hours per week. Some host countries prefer applicants who intend to become foreign language teachers; others encourage applicants of all majors, including those who do not speak the host country language. Applicants with more than five years teaching experience should consider other Fulbright programs.
Critical Language Enhancement Awards. Grantees receive 3-6 months of intensive language study in addition to the Fulbright full grant. Only select languages and host countries are available for this opportunity.
The Fulbright-National Geographic Digital Storytelling Fellowship. The Fulbright-National Geographic provides an academic year of overseas travel and digital storytelling in one, two, or three countries on a globally significant theme, as well as a platform for the digital storytelling project, and mentoring by a National Geographic editor.
Country-Specific Awards. Look to host country pages for special opportunities for programs in the sciences, slow foods, deaf studies, public policy, water management, business and journalism.
Fulbright grants include round-trip transportation to the host country, and a living allowance for an academic year, based on living costs in the host country. Limited health benefits are also provided. Depending on the host country, full grants may also include full or partial tuition, language study programs, book and research allowances, pre-departure and in-country orientations, and enrichment activities.
Enrolled students must submit completed applications to SF State's Fellowships Office by the campus deadline.
Alumni who have not yet matriculated at another institution may apply either through the University or as "at large" applicants. Alumni applying through the University must submit complete applications to the Fellowships Office by the campus deadline.
A campus interview is required for all applicants applying through the University.
The Fellowships Office is available to provide feedback to applicants applying through the University on their application materials, including the personal statement and statement of purpose, and to assist in preparing for the campus interview.
Generally, applicants will not have spent more than six months in the host country, although certain exceptions apply. Applicants may be born in the host country to which they are applying, if they left that country in their youth, or they may have spent up to a year as a study-abroad undergraduate in the host country.
Applicants must have minimum language proficiency required by the host country and language abilities appropriate to their proposed project.
Graduating seniors and recent bachelor's degree recipients usually propose projects for which they have undergraduate coursework or direct work or internship experience. Graduate students generally propose independent study or research.
Some ETA countries invite applicants to propose an independent project to work on when not assisting in the classroom.
All applicants should demonstrate a strong knowledge of the host country, and must propose cultural or community activities that would facilitate engagement with the local community.
Graduating seniors and recent bachelor's degree recipients, master's students, those possessing a master's degree, students currently enrolled in a doctoral program, doctoral candidates, artists and musicians (4 years of study or experience required), young professionals (with up to 5 years experience), including writers, journalists, and those in law, business, and other professional fields.
Selection criteria include academic preparation for the project, feasibility of the project proposal, knowledge of the host country, and foreign language abilities appropriate to the proposed project.
The national deadline is usually in mid-October. Applicants currently enrolled at the University must apply through SF State by the campus deadline. Applicants who are SF State alumni may apply through the University or as "at large" applicants.
All applicants who apply through the University must apply by the campus deadline and participate in a campus interview. (A Skype interview may be arranged if the applicant is out of the area.)
Completed applications must be submitted to the Fellowships Office, Grad Studies reception, ADM 254, by Noon on the campus deadline: annually on September 6.
How To Apply:
Currently enrolled students must apply through SF State by the campus deadline. Alumni may apply through the University or as "at large" applicants. Students—and alumni who elect to apply through SF State—are strongly encouraged to work with the Fellowships Office months in advance of the campus deadline — to perfect the project proposal, personal statement, and other aspects of the Fulbright application. __________________________________________________________________________________________________ To learn more about the Fulbright program, or to receive feedback on your application materials, feel free to email Dr. Joy Viveros, Fulbright Program Adviser, and Executive Coordinator and Advisor of the Fellowships Office, for an appointment.