The Fulbright U.S. Student Program provides full funding for an academic year abroad in over 140 countries outside of the U.S. You must have U.S. citizenship in order to apply, hold a bachelor’s degree before the start of the grant (but not yet have a PhD) and be in good health. We recommend you review Fulbright’s eligibility requirements and preferred qualifications before reading any further.
Once you confirm eligibility, please note that current juniors should be working through the Fulbright Applicant Timeline to submit the final application senior year. Current graduate students and USC alumni (up to 3 years after graduation) are eligible to apply through USC as long as all campus deadlines are met.
A Fulbright grant covers round-trip airfare, a monthly stipend (varies by country), and accident/sickness coverage. Other possible benefits include: support for dependents, research allowance, tuition, language lessons, enhancement activities and disability-related accommodations.
Because applicants can only apply to one country and one type of grant each year, it is well worth taking the time to understand each kind of Fulbright grant and corresponding country description. Choosing the grant that is the best fit for your experience level and professional goals will be the foundation of a compelling Fulbright application.
Types of Fulbright Grants
Applicants for Fulbright Study/Research grants design their own projects and will typically work with affiliates at foreign universities or other institutes of higher education. Program requirements vary by country. Study/research applicants should work with a faculty mentor in their field of study to prepare an application. It is also helpful to have someone who his familiar with the host country review your application. There are also field specific grants in business, journalism and communication, science and public health. Graduate degree grants are offered in specific countries. This is the most common grant type USC students apply for.
Study/Research (Creative and Performing Arts)
Applicants for study/research (creative and performing arts) grants design their own projects and will typically work with affiliates at foreign universities or other institutes of higher education. Program requirements vary by country. Study/research applicants should work with a faculty mentor in their field of study to prepare an application. It is also helpful to have someone who his familiar with the host country review your application. Creative and performing arts applicants are required to submit supplementary materials based on their disciplines.
English Teaching Assistant (ETA) Programs
The English Teaching Assistant (ETA) Programs place Fulbrighters in classrooms abroad to provide assistance to the local English teachers. ETA’s help teach English language while serving as cultural ambassadors for the U.S. The age and academic level of the students varies by country, ranging from kindergarten to university level. ETA placements are offered in approximately 75 countries and although applicants can choose their country, Fulbright ultimately makes the school placement. As such, no affiliation is needed. ETA applicants should have an understanding of the education system in the host country and work with a faculty mentor to prepare an application. It is also helpful to have someone who his familiar with the host country review your application. If you are considering the ETA, you may find the undergraduate minors in Rossier’s School of Education a good fit to help prepare you for Fulbright. This is the second most common category USC students apply for.
**Fulbright-Clinton Public Policy Fellowships (Temporarily suspended for the 2018-2019 Grant Year)
Fulbright-Clinton Public Policy Fellowship provides opportunities to serve in professional placements in a foreign government ministry or institution in partner governments. Candidates must have a Master’s level degree and at least two years of full-time, professional work experience in policy-related fields to be eligible. Fellows build mutual understanding and contribute to strengthening the public sector while gaining hands-on public sector experience. This Fellowship also includes an independent academic study/research component. Fellows function in a “special assistant” role for a senior level official. The U.S. Embassy, with the Fulbright Commission (where applicable), will identify host ministries and provide administrative support and oversight during the Fellow’s program. As such, no affiliation is needed. Fulbright-Clinton Fellowships are available in select countries only. Applicants should work with a faculty mentor in their field of study to prepare an application and ideally, someone who his familiar with the host country.
Fulbright-National Geographic Digital Storytelling Fellowship
The Fulbright-National Geographic Digital Storytelling Fellowship provides opportunities for U.S. citizens to participate in an academic year of overseas travel and digital storytelling in one, two, or three countries on a globally significant theme. Utilizing a variety of digital storytelling tools, including text, photography, video, audio, graphic illustrations, and/or social media, Fellows will tell their stories, or the stories of those they meet, publishing their work on a dedicated blog hosted on the National Geographic website. Fellows will be paired with one or more National Geographic editors for continued editorial direction and mentoring throughout their Fulbright grant period. Five recipients are selected for this award each year. If you are considering this award, we also encourage you to look into a Fulbright Study/research grants since more placements are available and applicants also can pursue story-telling projects.
Special Opportunity: Critical Language Enhancement Award
The Critical Language Enhancement Award (CLEA) provides an opportunity to receive three to six months of intensive language study as an enhancement to a Fulbright grant. CLEA is only available in eligible countries: China (mainland China program only), Egypt, India, Indonesia, Jordan, Morocco, Russia.