Jonas Caballero
at University of Cambridge

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Samuel Thuman
at Nottingham Trent University

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US Awards - Timeline FAQs

Q: How does the application process work?

1. The application process is different for each award category.  Generally, if you are a current student, you should apply through your university. Those no longer in university should apply directly to the Institute of International Education, (IIE) an administrative body which both promotes and processes Fulbright awards worldwide. During the application process, IIE should always be your first point of contact for award questions. After receiving the applications, IIE sends them out to review committees for short-listing. 

If you are interested in a Scholar, Distinguished Chair or Visiting Professor award, you will make your application through the Council for the International Exchange of Scholars (CIES). During the application process, CIES should always be your first point of contact for award questions. After receiving the applications, CIES sends them out to review committees for short-listing. After applications have been reviewed by IIE and CIES long-listed applications are passed to the US-UK Fulbright Commission.


2. The US-UK Fulbright Commission sends the application forms to their own selection committees for further short-listing.  Committees are comprised of representatives from a relevant professional field, senior academics, senior US Embassy and/or Consulate representatives, Fulbright alumni and Fulbright Commission staff.  The selection committee meets in London for a discussion of the applications and the top applicants are selected for 10-20 minute telephone interviews, usually conducted by the Executive Director and the Awards Director.


3. After the interviews the Fulbright Commission submits its nominations to the J. William Fulbright Foreign Scholarship Board (FSB) for approval. The FSB is the governing body of all Fulbright programmes globally, there to ensure that each programme maintains the same high standards and regulations. Their approval of each candidate is required before candidates may be considered grantees. Seeking FSB approval can take some time but typically this will come through no later than April of each year.


4. Once every candidate has been approved by the FSB, IIE/CIES will notify all applicants as to their status. The Fulbright Commission will then begin liaising directly with candidates to process required Fulbright paperwork. Reserve candidates receive awards only if one or more of those selected drop out or if additional funding is made available to the Fulbright Commission. Those not selected will be informed by IIE/CIES at the end of the selection process.


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