Graduate Students and the Fulbright Program

Fulbright Advisor

Robert McCloud, Ed.D.
Associate Professor


Tel: 203-371-7792


Academic Building
Humanities Center 109D

Graduate Students and the Fulbright Program


While Fulbright grants may not be available for undergraduate research and study, it is never too early to start thinking about a Fulbright application. You may also browse the Graduate Students page for further information. 

SHU Fulbright Advisor • What is the Fulbright Program   Who are Fulbrighters  Who Should Apply  

Eligibility Requirements  Which Fulbright Is Right for Me  Program Benefits  Health Plan   

Education Loan Deferment  Competition Timeline • Grant Period  Program Brochure  Alumni Videos   


SHU Fulbright Advisor

Dr. Bob McCloud is the Sacred Heart University Fulbright Program Advisor. He can provide information and guidance to SHU students interested in applying for Fulbright awards for study, research, or teaching assistantships abroad. You are encouraged to contact Dr. McCloud in your Sophomore or early Junior year to develop a plan of action.

What is the Fulbright U.S. Student Program?

Sponsored by the U.S. Department of State’s Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs, the Fulbright U.S. Student Program offers fellowships abroad for one academic year to graduating college seniors, graduate students, young professionals, scientists, and artists.

Program participants pursue graduate or professional study, advanced research, or English teaching in elementary and secondary schools or universities. Each year, approximately 1,600 Americans traveling to more than 140 countries receive support from the Fulbright U.S. Student Program.

Who Are Fulbrighters? 

Fulbright U.S. students:

    • Are recent college graduates, postgraduates, scientists, and other young professionals
    • Strive to foster mutual understanding between the people of the United States and the people of other countries by learning from their hosts overseas while sharing American experiences with their counterparts
    • Represent the richness and diversity of the United States through their varied backgrounds, hometowns, and academic institutions
    • Pursue research, teach English, or undertake graduate study in a wide range of academic fields in over 140 countries
    • Use their international experiences as cultural ambassadors to enhance their academic and professional careers and become leaders in their fields

Who Should Apply? 

The Fulbright U.S. Students Program seeks applications form highly motivated, open-minded individuals in any academic field and from any background. Fulbright evaluates candidates based on a student’s cumulative experience and goals; there is no minimum undergraduate G.P.A. requirement. It is not necessary to be enrolled in a college or university at the time of application.

Fulbright candidates should be flexible self-starters with a strong interest in promoting international mutual understanding. Above all, they should be capable of contributing to, and benefiting from, an intensive cultural exchange program.

What Are The Eligibility Requirements? 

To apply to the Fulbright U.S. Student Program, you must:

    • Be a U.S. citizen at the time of application (Permanent residents are not eligible)
    • Hold a bachelor’s degree or the equivalent before the start of the grant. Applicants without a BA or the equivalent may also be considered if you have extensive professional study and/or experience in the field you wish to pursue.
    • Submit a satisfactory Medical Certificate of Health from a physician
    • Demonstrate proficiency in the written and spoken language of the host country sufficient to communicate with the people and to carry out the proposed study. This is especially important for projects in the social sciences and humanities.

For more information on eligibility requirements, including ineligibility, please visit the Fulbright website. 

Which Fulbright Is Right for Me? 

The Fulbright U.S. Student Program offers fellowships for U.S. graduating college seniors, graduate students, young professionals, and artists to study abroad for one academic year. The Program also includes an English Teaching Assistant component.

The Fulbright-mtvU Fellowships award up to four U.S. students/young professionals the opportunity to study the power of music as a cultural force abroad. Fellows conduct research for one academic year on projects of their own design about a chosen musical aspect. They share their experiences during their Fulbright year via video reports, blogs and podcasts.

The Fulbright Public Policy Fellowship Program awards participants the opportunity to serve in professional placements in foreign government ministries or institutions and gain hands-on public sector experience while also carrying out an academic research/study project.

The Fulbright-National Geographic Digital Storytelling Fellowship awards participants the opportunity to undertake an in-depth examination of a globally relevant issue, comparing and contrasting how that issue is experienced across borders. Utilizing a variety of digital storytelling tools, including text, photography, video, audio, graphic illustrations, and/or social media, Fellows will tell their stories, or the stories of those they meet, publishing their work on National Geographic media platforms with the support of National Geographic’s editorial team.

Program Benefits 

Grant benefits for all Fulbright U.S. Student grants include:

    • Round-trip transportation to the host country
    • Funding to cover room, board, and incidental costs, based on the cost of living in the host country
    • Accident & Sickness Health Benefits
    • Possible loan deferment

In some countries, grants may also include:

    • Book and research allowances*
    • Mid-term enrichment activities
    • Full or partial tuition
    • Language study programs
    • Pre-departure and in-country orientations

*Grantees with projects that require extensive research support, in-country travel, study materials, or equipment should explore additional funding from other sources to supplement the Fulbright funding.

Please review the relevant Country Summary for specific details.

More information about Fulbright Program benefits are located on the Fulbright website. 

Health Benefits Plan Summary for U.S. Student Fulbright Fellows

The U.S. Department of State has established health and accident benefits for all Fulbright Fellows. The Accident and Sickness Program for Exchanges (ASPE) is a basic policy and as stated in the U.S. Fellows Orientation Handbook, it is not a substitute for your private health benefits coverage. The ASPE policy provides coverage up to $100,000 per illness or accident with a $25 deductible for each claim. More information about health benefits is available on the Fulbright website. 

Education Loan Deferments

In most cases, U.S. Student Fulbright Fellows may defer student loans while on a Fulbright grant. However, it is your responsibility to confirm this with your lending institution. As a general rule, Fulbright fellowships fall under the category of Graduate Fellowship Deferments. The Graduate Fellowship Deferment is for students engaged in a full-time course of study in a graduate fellowship program such as the Fulbright program. More information about loan deferment is available on the Fulbright website. 

Competition Timeline

An interactive competition timeline is located on the Fulbright website. 

The following apply to all types of Fulbright U.S. Student Grants:

Departure from the United States-Departure dates corre­spond to the academic calendars abroad. Approximate dates of the academic years in the various countries can be found in the Country Summaries. Requirements for at­tendance at orientation programs, where applicable, in the host country are indicated in the Country Summaries.

Grant Period

In most cases, grant dates must correspond to the academic calendar of the host country. Exceptions may be made for grants with full-time research projects. In any case, grants must begin by March 31, 2015 for the 2014-15 academic year. Applicants are expected to provide a timeline for their project in the Statement of Grant Purpose.

More Information

Program Brochure

Download the U.S. Student Brochure 2014-2015.

Alumni Videos

The Fulbright Program highlights grantees and alumni through video-we visit alumni, talk to grantees, and dig into what Fulbrighters are doing on the ground.  Watch now.

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