What is the campus deadline?
The firm campus deadline for the current Fulbirght cycle for 2020-21 is Tuesday, August 25, 2020 at 11:59pm EST. You must submit your application, along with all supplemental materials, by this time so that the Campus Committee can interview applicants to complete the Campus Committee Evaluation, which must be submitted with your application if you are not applying as an at-large candidate. Following your interview and before the national deadline in October, you will have the opportunity to revise your application based on feedback provided by one of the fellowship advisors and the campus interview committee.
What is a Fulbright?
"Fulbright" is shorthand for the Fulbright U.S. Student Program, which is sponsored by the U.S. State Department. Its mission is to promote cultural exchange through person-to-person interactions in 140+ countries.
Are you eligible to apply?
To apply for a Fulbright, you must be a US citizen and a graduating senior at the time of application. Recent graduates may also apply either through The Office of Fellowships, which is encouraged, or as an At-Large candidate. If your parents are employed by the State Department or USAID, or any organization subcontracted to the above organizations, you are NOT ELIGIBLE to apply.
How do I begin the application process for the current cycle?
You must make your intent to apply known to us by July 1 by enrolling into the F&M Canvas site. Prospective applicants who miss the intent form deadlines may need to apply “at large” rather than through F&M. On the Canvas site, you will find useful guidelines for producing a successful application.
Once you have determine your eligibility, you will need to determine award type and country. You may only apply to 1 award program (English Teaching Assistantship or Study/Research) in 1 country.
If you are still unsure about which program and which country after you have read through the information below, then do not hesitate to email Dr. Cable to ask questions and seek guidance.
How do I determine which applicant type?
To determine whether or not to pursue an English Teaching Assistantship (ETA), a Study/Research (S/R) grant, or a Creative & Performing Arts check out these sites:
ETA. This award places grantees in schools overseas to supplement local English language instruction and to provide a native speaker presence in the classrooms. For most countries, an ETA entails you being a teaching assistant rather than the sole teacher, emphasizing speaking and highlighting aspects of American culture.
When applying for this award, you should have sort of a supplemental project in mind. For example, if you are interested in healthcare, you could propose volunteering in a clinic, with a particular NGO, etc. If you played a sport in high school or college, you could propose working with local children after school and setting up a sports league.
Keep your language skills in mind. Countries with languages like Spanish, French, and German typically expect a fairly high level of fluency. If you pick a country with a less commonly taught language (like Tagalog or Hungarian) then it’s likely there will not be any expectation of fluency. You should, however, indicate in your application essays how you will learn enough of the language before you go so that you can at least ask directions, buy bread, find the bathroom, etc.
Visit the ETA site to find out the number of awards that exist for each country, type of school placement (primary school, secondary, university, etc...), placement location (rural/urban), hours/week of teaching, and language requirements, if any.
S/R. Depending on the country (they all vary), this type of award will fund either:
A one-year Masters program or the first year of a multi-year Masters program, and occasionally a PhD program. (Alas, you will need to find other funding for the rest of your Masters program. Many schools do offer this type of funding, so don’t panic yet.)
An independent research project supervised by a researcher/professor in the country of your choice. (You are responsible for finding this mentor and obtaining affiliation with their institution. More about this below.) I highly recommend that if you want to apply for this type of award you have substantial research experience already. (Hackman, independent study, etc)
A combination of the above. Some countries want you to have an independent research project and take 1-2 classes each semester.
Applicants can propose their own independent study/research projects (Study Award) or, in some countries, can propose to enroll in a graduate program. Typically, students applying for an Academic/Research Fulbright have a GPA of 3.6 or better, but this is not always the case. GPA is definitely not the only important factor in applying for a Fulbright.
If you’re leaning toward the Academic/Research award, consider applying for a country where you can do a Masters degree or at least take some classes while conducting your research. Fulbright is concerned that college seniors may not have enough independent research under their belt to sustain a full-year of it in another country. However, if you already have research experience in that country you may be fine.
Creative & Performing Arts Fields of Study. These types of Fulbrights are available in select countries; you’ll need to visit the country page of your preferred country to see if they will accept these types of applications. For this Fulbright award, you may apply to work with an artist or simply live in another country while perfecting your craft. You may not, however, enroll in a formal program (like an MFA or another degree-seeking program) as your application would then fall into the Academic/Research Fulbright category. One important note: there is no annual quota for Creative/Performing Arts Fulbrights, meaning that a country may select as many (or as few) as they like.
How do I determine which country?
You must learn more about the job requirements (yes, it is a job), which VARY FROM COUNTRY TO COUNTRY, by reading through VERY CAREFULLY (do not skim) the SUMMARY PAGE OF THE COUNTRY. Each country summary page is unique, detailing the job qualifications and ideal candidates. Successful statements are tailored to the information spelled out on the country page. Once you have determined the country, we strongly advise you to print out the country page and highlight information that you will need to address in your application statements.
What are the odds of getting a Fulbright?
To find an answer to that question, you may want to check out the statistics page to determine the probability of receiving a specific award type in a specific country. Keep in mind, however, that we discourage you from trying to "game" this process. In the end, you should apply for the country and position that you are most excited about and qualified for.
F&M has had 6 to 9 recipients each year recently out of 30 to 40 applicants. In the end, however, it is near impossible to determine who will become a recipient. The only way to find out the answer to this question is to apply.