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Fulbright Scholarship Program

The Fulbright Scholarship Program is the flagship international academic exchange program sponsored by the U.S. government. It is named after Senator J. William Fulbright who moved the motion. It helps to foster mutual understanding between the United States and other countries.

The U.S. Congress appropriates funds to the U.S. Department of State to sponsor the Fulbright Program each year. 


Large contributions are also made by many foreign governments. Additional direct or in-kind funding is provided by U.S. and foreign institutions of higher education, non-governmental organizations, private organizations, corporate partnerships, and individual donors.

Recommended: Amsterdam Excellence Scholarship (AES)


The program awards approximately 8,000 students, scholars, teachers, artists, and professionals each year from the United States and 160 countries. 

History and Administration of the Fulbright Program

Over 400,000 Fulbrighters from the United States and 165 countries, supported by the American people and partner governments around the world, have studied, taught, and conducted research in each other’s countries while promoting international understanding and collaboration as participants and alumni since its inception in 1946.  The creation of, and sustained support for, the Fulbright Program reflects a shared global vision for peaceful relations among nations. 

Fulbright is special in its bi-nationalism and is noted for its merit-based selection process and academic prestige. Fulbrighters come from all backgrounds and are selected regardless of race, color, national origin, sex, age, religion, geographic location, socioeconomic status, disability, sexual orientation, or gender identity.

The U.S. Department of State’s Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs (ECA) runs the Fulbright Program under policy guidelines established by the Fulbright Foreign Scholarship Board (FFSB). The  Board members, appointed by the President of the United States, the 12-member Fulbright Foreign Scholarship Board was established by Congress to supervise the global Fulbright Program as authorized by the Fulbright-Hays Act of 1961. The Board also meets quarterly to establish policies for Fulbright selection and operating procedures. 


Alumni of the Fulbright program from the United States and around the world have achieved great success in government, education, the arts, philanthropy, business, and sciences. Among the ranks of Fulbright alumni are 62 Nobel Prize recipients, 78 MacArthur Foundation Fellows, 89 Pulitzer Prize winners, and 41 current or former heads of state or government.

The Fulbright Program has a long record of promoting diversity and inclusion and striving to ensure that its participants are fully representative of society in the U.S. and abroad.  The Program and its administrators are deeply committed to redoubling efforts to increase and enhance the Fulbright Program’s diversity, equity, and inclusion, working in concert with partner governments, Fulbright commissions, institutions of higher education, participants, and alumni worldwide.

There are several groups of scholarships available; segmented for Students, Scholars, Teachers, Professionals, and Groups.

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