The Fulbright Program has played an integral role in education since its inception in 1946 and shows no signs of slowing today with so many students seeking funding. While some scholarships have so many requirements that diminish the pool of applicants to choose from, the Fulbright Program casts a much wider net, thus increasing the number and quality of individuals eligible for the award.
There are 15 types of grants available in four major categories – student, scholar, teacher and professional – and roughly 8,000 are awarded each year. Fulbrighters can range from recent graduates to experts in their fields and can include students, researchers and teachers at all types of public and private educational institutions from every corner of the globe. Each applicant is different but all must be ready, able and willing to immerse themselves in a new culture and expose their host communities to new ideas while building the connections that create lasting international partnerships. To ensure diversity, the U.S. Department of State encourages participation from students and faculty of community colleges, historically black colleges and universities, small liberal arts colleges, tribal colleges, and Hispanic-serving institutions in 150 countries. It doesn’t matter who you know or where you went to school, either: The Fulbright Program is a 100-percent merit-based competition, meaning that all applicants have an equal opportunity to win.
More than 300,000 individuals from over 155 countries have participated in the Fulbright Program over the past 64/65 years and include 75 recipients of the Pulitzer Prize, 40 recipients of the Nobel Prize, 28 heads of state or government and one Olympic gold medalist, to name a fraction of Fulbrighters’ accomplishments. Don’t just imagine joining these ranks…apply!