Fulbright Students

Fulbright U.S. Student Program

The U.S. Fulbright Student Program offers fully-funded awards that allow U.S. citizens who are recent graduates or graduate students to go abroad for study, research, or teaching. There are opportunities in over 140 countries. During their grants, Fulbrighters will meet, work, live with and learn from the people of the host country, sharing daily experiences. The program facilitates cultural exchange through direct interaction on an individual basis in the classroom, field, home, and in routine tasks, allowing the grantee to gain an appreciation of others’ viewpoints and beliefs, the way they do things, and the way they think.

Campus Requirements

Please visit the UCSC Fulbright webpage to see the campus deadline and campus-specific instructions. To be competitive for this program, UC Santa Cruz encourages applicants no more than two years from degree completion (or currently enrolled) to apply. UC Santa Cruz will work with alumni with no more than two years from degree and if the applicant can partake in on-campus interviews. The required on-campus interviews take place shortly after the campus deadline. Applicants who are more than two years from degree must apply as an "at-large" applicant.

Competition Timeline

The competition cycle opens in the spring and closes in the fall. The application is entirely online. Applicants are highly encouraged to start early on this tedious and extensive application process.

Fulbright Award Types:

  • Open Research: Design your own research project. Participants typically work with advisers at foreign universities or other institutes of higher education. See Study/Research Awards.
  • Study (Graduate Degree): Study in a graduate degree program. Participants receive standard benefits (monthly living stipend, health benefits and round-trip airfare) plus tuition coverage for the graduate degree program. See Study/Research Awards.
  • Field-Specific Opportunities: Special opportunities exist for those interested in business, journalism, sciences and public health. See Study/Research Awards.
  • English Teaching Assistant: Provide assistance to the local English teachers in a classroom abroad. ETAs help teach English language while serving as cultural ambassadors for the U.S. See ETA Awards.
  • Fulbright-National Geographic Digital Storytelling Fellowship: Participate in an academic year of overseas travel and storytelling in one, two, or three countries on a globally significant theme. See Fulbright-National Geographic Award.


In addition to each country’s webpage (listing opportunities, eligibility criteria, etc.), applicants are encouraged to take advantage of the extensive tutorial and video library provided by Fulbright to learn about more specific information on award types, regional opportunities, and application components.

Tips on applying to Fulbright:

  • You can apply to only one award with Fulbright per cycle. You are allowed and encouraged to reapply if you did not receive an award in previous cycles.
  • Carefully review the eligibility criteria for each program by each country. Criteria varies by destination.
  • Argue why you have chosen the country as opposed to anywhere else.
  • Articulate the contribution you will make to the host community.
  • Make sure your essay and project description (for research/study awards) on paper and in-person are tailored to a general audience. If your approach is too field-specific (e.g. field-specific terminology), the review committee may not understand your project.

Learn from a Fulbright Alumni

You’re not alone! Reach out to a Fulbright Alumni Ambassador and learn from the best. They are eager to give you first-hand advice.