UK Summer Institutes FAQs

Please read these FAQs thoroughly before contacting the Commission directly with any questions you may have about the programmes. 

Selection criteria

What is meant by ‘little or no travel experience’?

Preference will be given to strong applicants who do not have extensive experience outside the US. Applicants who have spent more than four weeks outside of the US/North America in the last five years would not be eligible. Exceptions are being made for refugees and/or students from a different cultural background who have spent time abroad due to family emergencies. Candidates who have never left the US and are unlikely to without support will be prioritised.

I am a non-US citizen but am resident in the US. May I apply?

No. We require all applicants for our UK summer programmes to be a US citizen with a US passport. Unfortunately, if you do not currently possess a US passport then you would not be eligible to take part in this programme.

I have just finished high school and am about to start university/college. May I apply?

No, unfortunately this programme is only open to candidates who are over 18 years of age at the start of the programme and are currently freshmen or sophomores in college/university.

I currently attend a community college – can I still apply?

Yes, applicants who have completed community college classes are eligible to apply. However, you must have at least two years of undergraduate study left to complete after returning from the institute to be eligible to apply.

I graduate in May/June 2023, can I still apply?

No, applicants must have two years of undergraduate study left to complete to participate in this programme. As you only have one year of undergraduate study remaining after the Institute finishes, you are ineligible for this award.

What are you looking for in an applicant?

We are interested in evidence of leadership qualities and initiative, academic ability, character, adaptability, and ambassadorial qualities, as well as an interest in the UK and its culture. We explicitly prioritise applicants who have never left the US and are unlikely to without our support: many of our participants are low income and/or first-generation students. We are looking for a diverse range of backgrounds. The Fulbright Commission aims to select a diverse cohort.

Can I apply for more than one programme?

No, you may only apply for one of the Summer Institutes. You should decide based on the programme outlines of each institute and decide which institute best suits your academic and personal interests.

I am in my Sophomore year of college, but I am Junior on my transcript due to the units that I have from high school and college, can I still apply?

If you would have two years left of undergraduate education when you return to the US after the Institutes, then you are eligible to apply regardless of the amount of credits you have.


What is the timeline for applying to the Summer Institutes Programme 2022?

  • 30 November 2021: Applications open
  • 21 February 2022: Applications close at 12:00PM (EST)
  • Early April 2022: Shortlisted candidates are notified
  • 18 April – April 26, 2022: Interviews take place 
  • Early May 2022: Finalists announced


What exactly should I do to prepare before beginning my application?

Read the webpage for the programme to which you intend to apply, including the Terms and Conditions and other recommended items such as these FAQs.

What exactly do you mean by extra-curricular activities?

List all the things you have done or achieved while at school or since. For example, you may have been active in your Student Council, founded a society/club or mentored younger students. Another example might be running a social action group or organising sporting activities etc.

What do you want to see in my Personal Statement?

A strong personal statement can set you apart from other applicants and give you an opportunity to showcase what you as an individual can bring to the programme. The selection committee want to know as much as they can about you. As there is no set structure for writing a personal statement, you can use your personal statement as a marketing tool - be imaginative and make yourself stand out.

What do you want to see in the references?

At least one of your references should be from a recent professor or teacher. References will not be accepted from family members or friends. You should ask people who know you very well: teachers, professors, careers counsellors, coaches, youth group leaders, employers etc. Once you have selected your two referees, you should inform them of the deadlines for submission. It is your responsibility as the applicant to check in with your referees regularly about their progress and the timely and accurate submission of their letter.


I will be unavailable during the listed interview date(s). Would it be possible to make any alternative arrangements?

No, interview dates are fixed. The timeline for interviews is published online in advance of the application deadlines.

What are the interviews like?

Interviews last for approximately 20-30 minutes. We have a list of questions we ask all final candidates and generally do not discuss the application itself, except to seek clarification if something is not clear or perhaps has not been considered. It is also an opportunity to review the articulation of the candidates. As Fulbright summer programme participants are cultural ambassadors and future leaders in their fields, they must have strong communication skills.

Can you provide me with specific feedback and/or reasons why I was or was not selected for the Summer Programme?

It is the policy not to give to individual applicants, to others inquiring on their behalf, or to the public generally, the specific reasons for selection or non-selection of applicants for awards.

Programme queries and other questions

What does the Summer Institute award cover?

The Fulbright Commission and the Institute host institutions work in partnership to provide the following:

  • Round-trip airfare from US to the host university in the UK;
  • Accommodation and social programme;
  • Tuition and fees at host university;
  • In some Institutes, small subsistence stipends e.g. food and drink;

Participants are expected to pay for their own travel, health, and accident insurance.

How many applications do you typically receive?

As with all our Fulbright Awards, the application process is extremely competitive, but if you do not apply then you will not stand a chance of getting a place.

I have a family holiday planned during the last week of the programme, can the dates be altered, or can I leave the programme early?

No. The dates for the programmes are set by the host universities and candidates must be willing to participate in the institute in full to be eligible to apply. Participants also are not allowed to travel prior or after the programmes; return tickets with arrival and departure dates centred around Institute dates are booked and cannot be altered.

Can I receive academic credit for taking part in these programmes?

It is possible to receive academic credit on most of the summer programmes. If you participate in an institute, the university contact will be the best person to help you with details of receiving credits.

If I am successful in obtaining a place on this programme, may I still apply for a Fulbright Award in future?

Yes, the Summer Institutes are designed in such a way with the hope that participants will come back to the UK at postgraduate or postdoctoral level as a Fulbright Student or Scholar.