Fulbright US Student Programs

Fulbright fellowships, through the U.S. State Department provides for teaching, research and study opportunities internationally for U.S. citizen students in various disciplines. Almost 200 countries are viable sites for placement.

We will be hosting virtual Fulbright Week 2021, April 5-9? (More information coming soon.)

The national deadline is usually in mid-October of each, and UIC graduate students who are applying must pass through a campus evaluation first, and so must meet an internal UIC campus deadline projected to be September 9, 2021. Graduate students and alumni from UIC’s graduate programs should contact Benn Williams (bwilli7@uic.edu), their dedicated university Fulbright Program Advisor. (Undergraduates and undergraduate alumni should contact Kim Germain in the Office of External Fellowships. The 2022-23 competition will open March 31, 2021.

Are UIC students successful? According to the data available in a recent Chronicle of Higher Education article, the five “top producers” of Fulbright US students (doctoral institutions) averaged 125.4 applications and 35.6 awards. Their “success rate” was 28.9%. Two of UIC’s “aspirational peers” averaged 13 awards from 57.5 applications (29.4%). For same 2020-21 competition, UIC saw 7 recipients on 22 applications, a “success rate” of 31.8%. In fact, 59% of our applicants were semi-finalists; a whopping 75% of our graduate and professional students/alumni achieved semi-finalist or finalist status! In short, UIC compares favorably to our peers. (Source) Meanwhile, we await the final results for the 2021-22 competition. So far, 10 of our 18 are semi-finalists (55.6%); 75% of our graduate/professional students achieved this CV-worthy status.

UPDATES FOR THE 2022-2023 COMPETITION (coming soon)

The 2021-22 competition saw a record number of applications!

UPDATES FOR THE 2021-2022 COMPETITION (for comparison)

General Program Updates:

  • 4-6% increase in awards worldwide
  • Continued increase in ETA awards and Fulbright partner awards with international universities, including a small increase in the number of multi-year awards (master’s and doctoral), cf. https://us.fulbrightonline.org/about/types-of-awards/study-research
  • Fulbright-Fogarty Fellowship in Public Health:  host countries not yet advertised; MPH students are now eligible as well as third-year medical and PhD students with interest in global public health. For the 2021-22 competition, placements are available to: Ethiopia, Ghana, Jamaica, Malawi, Peru, Uganda, and Vietnam.
  • Pursuant to the President’s July 14, 2020 Executive Order on Hong Kong Normalization, there will be NO Fulbright program in the People’s Republic of China, including Hong Kong and Macau, for the upcoming (2021-2022) program cycle.

Regional Trends (East Asia-Pacific):

  • See note on China (including Hong Kong and Macau) above
  • More Study/Research applications are needed — Fulbright could offer more awards if there were more qualified candidates!
  • More Arts applications needed
  • ETA candidates: do NOT propose side research projects
  • ETA applicants: demonstrate a SINCERE interest in teaching and in the host country — gap-year projects not wanted
  • New programs: ETA in Myanmar/Burma and new master’s degree (study award) in Mind, Brain, and Consciousness at Taipei Medical University (Taiwan)
  • Many programs want rural Americans to go to rural regions
  • Under-subscribed Programs
    • Study/Research: Brunei, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Philippines, Taiwan, and Thailand
    • ETA: Laos, Mongolia
    • Graduate degree grants: Korea & Taiwan

Regional Trends (Europe):

  • More Study/Research applicants needed to Albania, Austria, Bulgaria, Croatia, Kosovo, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, North Macedonia, Romania, Slovak Republic, Slovenia, and Turkey**
  • More applications sought are needed for the special partnership awards to Finland and France
  • European Union: New award: Fulbright/Schuman Antall Jozsef Brussels Award (six months)
  • Finland: New award: Fulbright/University of Jyväskylä Graduate Award
  • France:
    • New award: Fulbright/Université de Paris-Saclay Doctoral Research Award
    • Renamed: Fulbright/CY Cergy Paris University Awards
  • Ireland:
    • New award: Fulbright/Sustainability Award at Kemmy Business School
    • New award: Fulbright/Peter Real Analog Devices Bernal Award
    • New awards: Fulbright/RCSI PhD Awards
    • Renamed: Fulbright/Hugh Lane Gallery Curatorial Award (UIC alumna is the finalist in the most recent competition!)
  • Spain: New award: Fulbright/Master’s Program in Spanish Second Language Teaching at ILCE Universidad de Navarra
  • United Kingdom:  Less funding for “Open Award” — applicants are highly encouraged to apply for a partnership award.

Regional Trends (Eurasia):

  • More Study/Research & ETA applicants needed for Armenia, Georgia, and Ukraine
  • ETA candidates with Russian language skills may want to consider other countries besides Russia, e.g. Moldova
  • ETAs have supplementary projects

Regional Trends (South & Central Asia):

  • India: Expansion of ETA program
  • More Study/Research & ETA Applicants sought for: Sri Lanka, Kyrgyzstan, Uzbekistan
  • Highly recommended to have some background in the local language (or Russian for Central Asia) before applying
  • Candidates must exemplify maturity & flexibility

Regional Trends (Middle East & North Africa):

  • No new awards
  • Under-subscribed: Saudi Arabia ETA, Kuwait S/R, Egypt S/R
  • Most students want to go to Jordan, Israel, and Morocco, while PhD grants to Israel and ETA grants to Morocco have decreased in number
  • Most countries require government and/or research clearances
  • In North Africa, ETA is often the primary language instructor

Regional Trends (Sub-Saharan Africa):

  • South Africa: Decrease in the number of ETAs offered
  • Francophone Africa wants more applications, especially Senegal
  • More applications also welcome in sub-Saharan countries, e.g., Eswatini, Niger, Republic of Congo, Togo
  • Candidates must exemplify maturity & flexibility

Regional Trends (Western Hemisphere):

  • Students doing thesis/dissertation research strongly preferred in the region.
  • Under-subscribed: Paraguay (S/R), Uruguay (ETA and S/R)
  • Candidates must exemplify maturity & flexibility
  • Argentina S/R: applicants should have one year of prior experience
  • Brazil: Number of Brazil ETAs halved
  • Colombia ETA: big jump in number of applications
  • Nicaragua: State Department is monitoring the situation

Connecting to Fulbright: us.fulbrightonline.org / vimeo.com/fulbright / youtube.com/fulbrightprogram / blogs.fulbrightonline.org/usapp