Fulbright – Research, Study, & English Teaching Assistantship Grants

Location: International Experience Type: Nomination Based Fellowship Awards

Overview

Fulbright grants are awarded to college graduates for year-long international experiences, primarily in research, graduate school, or teaching English. Applicants choose one grant program and one country per application cycle and submit applications in the early fall for grants that commence the following summer, fall, or later. Recipients know if their applications are being advanced to the finalist stage by the end of January, with Fulbright grants typically awarded between March and May.

Eligibility: Below is a brief outline of the eligibility criteria for the Fulbright; all candidates should review the full list of eligibility criteria on the Fulbright website to ensure that they are eligible for the grant for which they are applying. Applicants must:

  • Be U.S. citizens at the time of application. Permanent residents are not eligible.
  • Hold a B.A. degree or the equivalent before the start of the grant.
  • Be in good health
  • View updated Videos & Tutorials and Information Sessions to learn more about the program and the application process.

Note: Fulbright/IIE opened the 2025-2026 grant year application process on April 1, 2024!

Ethical Guidelines: All applicants are expected to adhere to these ethical guidelines.

Intent to Apply Deadline: Friday, May 24, 2024: please complete the following online form to let Grinnell’s Fulbright Program Adviser, Ann Landstrom, know that you are planning to apply for a Fulbright Grant in the coming cycle and schedule an advising appointment with the adviser; we appreciate this courtesy communications to provide full advising support to each applicant. If you missed this deadline, contact Ann at landstrom@grinnell.edu. These applications take considerable time, so do not delay in starting.

Intent to Apply URL: Fulbright Fall 2024 Intent to Apply

Commitment to Apply Deadline: Tuesday, August 20, 2024 – Must have met with Ann and be in progress with an application by this commitment date to submit an application on September 4. To commit you just need to tell Ann during an advising appointment!

Campus Deadline (for endorsement): Wednesday, September 4, 2024 from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. CT; applicants must have completed the Fulbright online application and deliver paper copies of the required application materials to Ann Landstrom in the CLS (1103 Park Street); THIS DEADLINE IS NON-NEGOTIABLE.

Pre-Foundation Deadline: All students and alumni applying through Grinnell College must complete their final applications by Friday, October 4, 2024, at 8 a.m. Central Time. Applications must be completed in advance of the foundation deadline for the FPA to complete and upload Campus Committee Evaluations.

Foundation Deadline: Tuesday, October 8, 2024, at 5 p.m. Eastern Time

Grant URL: Fulbright U.S. Student Program

Application URL: Fulbright U.S. Student Program Application Portal

Fulbright Application Campus Checklist:

About Fulbright Research/Study Grants

Research/Study Grants allow students to undertake a year of graduate study, research, and/or a combination of study and research at an academic institution in a different country. For graduating seniors, your plan should be a feasible research project and may include taking coursework. In addition, many countries offer one-year taught master’s programs that may be completed on a Fulbright. Research/Study Grant applicants should plan to obtain a letter of affiliation from someone at their host institution who will oversee and guide their fellowship year. Details of the grant duration, preferred topics, preferred candidates, affiliation requirements, grant benefits, language requirements, housing, additional stipends for dependents, and visa requirements are all determined on country-by-country bases. Potential applicants should review the Country Summaries on the Fulbright website to learn more about each individual country.

About English Teaching Assistantship Grants

English Teaching Assistantships (ETAs) are currently available in over 70 countries across all world regions. Depending on the country, ETAs may teach in elementary or secondary schools, universities, or language centers. They are usually placed outside of capital cities and live in university housing, apartments, and sometimes with host families. In a few countries, ETAs may also pursue a supplementary project—individual study, research, service project, etc—in addition to their teaching duties as time allows. Potential applicants should review the Country Summaries on the Fulbright website to learn more about each individual country.

Fulbright Grant Benefits

Fulbright benefits are based on the cost of living in the host country (and thus vary by country). In general, though, Fulbright grant benefits include:

  • Round-trip transportation to the host country;
  • Maintenance for the academic year, based on living costs in the host country; and
  • Limited health

Fulbright Grants may also include:

  • Book and research allowances. (The allowance provides some funding for research, books, and/or supplies. Grantees with projects that require extensive research support, in-country travel, study materials, or equipment should explore additional funding from other sources to supplement the Fulbright funding.)
  • Mid-term enrichment activities in many countries or world regions.
  • Full or partial tuition
  • Language study programs.
  • Pre-departure and in-country orientation.

For more details on Fulbright benefits, please see the Fulbright benefits webpage.

A Special Note on Transcripts for Enrolled Candidates

By the on-campus deadline, please obtain your unofficial Grinnell transcript through Colleague on the Registrar’s Office GrinnellShare site and submit by scanning in and uploading as a .pdf in the Fulbright application portal.

If you have transcripts from other postsecondary institutions, please procure and submit official copies of those. Exception: If course titles, credits, and grades from your off- campus-study program show up on your unofficial Grinnell transcript, you do NOT need to procure a separate transcript from that program. Likewise for college- or university-level courses you may have transferred to Grinnell College: provide supplemental transcripts only if the details are absent from your Grinnell transcript. The Embark Online Application has a page from where you upload your transcript (or transcripts); it works in the same way as uploading your Statement of Grant Purpose and Personal Statement essays.

Attention Ninth-Semester Teaching Certification Students

Due to different schedules for academic years around the world, over a dozen countries allow you to start your Fulbright English Teaching Assistantship Grant in January (or later) of the year following your graduation from Grinnell.

At-Large Candidates

Grinnell College alumni are welcome and encouraged to apply through our enrolled candidate process; national statistics show that enrolled candidates win Fulbright awards at about twice the frequency as at-large candidates. If they so choose, however, alumni may instead apply as at-large candidates. In this case, they would skip all of the above steps and apply directly to Fulbright by the early October deadline; no on-campus evaluation is required.

Resources for Applicants

Fulbright applicants from Grinnell College will find the following materials to be helpful:

Additional Considerations

What about grades? Generally, applicants to Study/Research Grants need to be more concerned with grades; for a research proposal or combined study/research proposal, I would recommend having a minimum GPA of 3.5, with excellent grades in your major and focal area for your Study/Research Grant application. Grades are important for these applications because (a) you must secure full letters of recommendation from faculty members or other researchers (and Fulbright letters are akin to letters for graduate school); and (b) you must seek and procure a letter of affiliation, and potential affiliators may very well ask to see a copy of your transcript before deciding whether they will support you. If you are applying for a master’s degree abroad, your grades should be even higher, since competition for these awards is very steep.

Grades are a bit less important for English Teaching Assistantship (ETA) Grant applicants. Please consult with the FPA if you are concerned about competitiveness markers and your specific situation.

And what about language ability? For Study/Research Grant applications, you must be able to carry out the work you propose – using language(s) of the host country however appropriate. In some cases you’ll need to compose written materials for your application in a host language; and in some cases you will interview (via Skype) in a host language. For ETA applications, you must meet or exceed the language requirements stated on the Fulbright country profile page.

Note that successful ETA applicants to countries in Western Europe (particularly France and Spain) must effectively be fluent – even though the Fulbright website calls only for two years of college study or its equivalent; the same goes for applicants to Latin America. (The reason is because you’ll be competing against students who’ve majored in French or Spanish.)

Note that the Fulbright U.S. Student Program welcomes applications from students and alumni who have previously spent time in the country to which they are applying for their Fulbright. (This policy differs from that for the Watson Fellowship; see this page that highlights additional differences) [Grinnell login required]. But they have some limitations: Having studied abroad in the country is fine; currently residing in the country is not. If you’ve spent more than six months in the potential host country outside the context of being a student, you will be at a disadvantage. Finally, if you hold dual citizenship, read the details about eligibility vis-à-vis your target country before applying.