FAQ

A. FULBRIGHT STUDENT AWARD

B. FULBRIGHT SENIOR (POSTDOCTORAL) AWARD


A. FULBRIGHT STUDENT AWARD


Q:What does the Fulbright Student Award include?

A:  The Fulbright Student award covers tuition/affiliation fees as well as a monthly stipend for accommodation and living expenses. The grant also includes accident/sickness insurance and covers international travel costs to and from the U.S. (roundtrip ticket)

In addition, the Fulbright Commission offers all the grantees one day Orientation Program as pre-departure assistance, in July. While in the U.S., the Fulbright grantees receive further support from the Institute of International Education (IIE).

Q: How many Fulbright awards are granted to Romanian graduate students?

A:  Recently 10 Fulbright Student awards have been offered to Romanian applicants. The number of grants depends on the yearly budget of the Commission. This means that the number of awards is not fixed and can vary depending on the amount of available resource and tuition fees inflation.

Q: In case I am not selected, may I receive any feedback and find out the reasons?

A: Unfortunately, no. Each year the number of well-qualified applicants exceeds the number of grants available. It is the policy of the Commission 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.

Q: In case I am not selected, will I be notified by the representatives of the Fulbright Commission?

A: As a general rule, only the applicants selected for the next phase of the competition are notified.

Q: What is the maximum funding one can be awarded?

A: The maximum funding which can be offered to one Student Award grantee is up to $35,000 for one year of study (9 months). The amount depends on the individual financial academic status of the student and the Fulbright committee’s recommendation. The grantees can contribute to covering expenses.

Q: If the study program lasts more than one year, can the Fulbright recipient renew the Fulbright grant for the following year?

A: Unfortunately, no. The Fulbright grant is designed for the first academic year and is not renewable even if the study program in the U.S. lasts longer.

Q: Can the award be postponed until the following year?

A: No. Fulbright Awards are not deferrable. Candidates are recommended to reapply in this case.

Q: Are Fulbright awards granted for study in a third country?

A: No. Fulbright grants to Romanian citizens are awarded only for studies in the United States of America.

Q: Is Romanian citizenship a condition for eligibility in the grant program?

A: Yes. Only Romanian citizens can apply to the program administered by the Fulbright Commission in Romania. Green card holders are not eligible.

Q: I hold dual citizenship-Romanian and American. Am I eligible to apply for a Fulbright grant in Romania?

A: No. But you may apply for a Fulbright grant in the U.S., as an American citizen.

Q: Is a person currently studying or researching in the U.S. eligible for a Fulbright grant? If this person has already been admitted for a study/research program, can he/she apply for the Fulbright grant to finance the second year of study in the U.S.?

A: No. Candidates studying or doing research in the U.S. at the time of application are not eligible for a Fulbright grant. Fulbright Student grants are designed only for the first academic year of study.

Q:  Can the letters of recommendation still be considered if they are provided after the application deadline?

A: The letters of recommendation will be considered only if they are sent by the deadline. Please refer to the advertisement of the current competition and also check the information about the Fulbright Student Award program posted on our website.

Q: Can a recipient pursue a medical degree with a Fulbright award?

A: Applicants who wish to pursue studies as medical students are not eligible. Applicants with medical degrees may receive grants for research or advanced academic study, but not for internships or residencies.

Q: Do I have to be admitted by a U.S. university before I apply for a Fulbright Student Award?

A: No. Being admitted by an American university is not a prerequisite for the Romanian applicants to Fulbright Student Award. However the candidates are encouraged to mention their university options in the application form. After the Fulbright selection process is concluded, the Institute of International Education in New Your (IIE) will team up with the Fulbright Commission for the admission and affiliation of the Romanian finalists to accredited U.S. universities. IIE will communicate with the U.S. universities on behalf of the Romanian finalists. The U.S. universities are established for each nominated finalist on the basis of a submission plan proposed by IIE and agreed by the finalist. Finalist’s initial preferences will be considered as well, depending on the program suitability and financial flexibility of the university proposed by the candidate.

Q: What happens if I am nominated for an award, but, finally, I am not admitted by any university included in my submission plan?

A: If you do not receive admission from any U.S. university, the offer of a Fulbright Student Award will be withdrawn. 

Q: What is the ideal profile of the visiting student researcher?

Q: I have already received a doctoral degree. Which category do I apply in?

A: If an applicant has or will receive a PhD prior to his/her Fulbright year in the U.S., she/he is strongly recommended to apply in the Senior (postdoctoral) category. Please check the timeline along with the information referring to the Fulbright Senior (postdoctoral) Award on our website.

Q: Under which visa category do grantees participate in the Fulbright program?

A: All non-U.S. Fulbright grantees are required to travel on "J" visas under Exchange-Visitor Program (Number G-1-00001) for the duration of their financial sponsorship. As a condition of “J” visa - after completion of the academic program, all students must come back to Romania and live in the home country for two years before being eligible to immigrate, apply for permanent residence, or a work permit, in the United States.

Q: I have studied previously in the United States. Am I eligible to apply for a Fulbright grant?

A: Yes. Applicants who have had previous U.S. study experience may receive awards, but preference is given to applicants without such experience.

Q: The online application system directed me to ask for permission from the Fulbright Commission before I proceed.  What should I do?

A: As a rule, this message is intended to ensure that you meet the minimum eligibility requirements.  If you follow the online instructions for Romanian Student Award applicants and the information included in the official competition announcement (pls. check our website), you do not need to contact the Commission; you may go on with your application.

Q: After nomination for a Fulbright grant are Romanian nominees allowed to contact the U.S. universities and communicate on the admission process, financial matters, funding, and visa issues with U.S. university representatives?

A: Along the admission and affiliation process the Romanian Student Award finalists are strongly advised to avoid communication on topics such as admission process, financial matters, funding, and visa issues with the U.S. university representatives. The admission and affiliation process to the U.S. universities is managed by the Fulbright Commission and the Institute of International Education in New York and all these matters will be agreed with the U.S. universities by these two organizations. Personal communication with U.S. universities would jeopardize admission and affiliation, leading to cancellation of the grant.

Q: Am I eligible to apply for the Fulbright Student Award if I have not graduated from university yet?

A: Yes. The Fulbright grants are designed for graduate students intending to pursue non-degree research programs or master’s study in the U.S. However, students in their final year of undergraduate study are also allowed to apply, provided they receive the graduation diploma by September (the year of application) and can demonstrate this with relevant documents such as complete transcripts and diploma/certificate of graduation.

Q: Does the Commission provide any guidance to Fulbright recipients who are interested to find financial aids and funding for their second year of study?

A: The Commission can help the student with funding for the first academic year only. Finding financial aid for the second year of study becomes student’s responsibility.

Q: I am not able to be present at the interview. May I be interviewed on the telephone and will my application still be considered?

A: No. Applicants are required to be present at the interview, which is held in Bucharest in the first half of September (the year of application). This is an absolute requirement of the program as the interview is considered a significant component of the Fulbright competition.

Q: Who evaluates the Fulbright application?

A:For the peer screening, the applications are reviewed by two specialists in their respective field (as a rule, an American and a Romanian specialist). The peer evaluation of the professional level of the applicant's proposal is based on the following criteria: importance of the proposed topic to the home country and to the field, clarity and value of the required essays, feasibility of the proposal, academic credentials, evidence that research in the U.S. is necessary to fulfill the proposed goals and plans to implement the acquired professional experience or disseminate research findings in Romania after conclusion of the grant.

As to the interview stage – a nomination committee composed of American and Romanian specialists will evaluate the candidates focusing on specific aspects such as motivation, adaptability, project impact and benefit for the home country. As a rule, the committee members are senior academics and accomplished professionals, U.S. Embassy representatives, and Fulbright alumni.

Q:What the reviewers expect to see in the letters of recommendation?

A: The letters of recommendation should provide accurate, relevant information and add to the activities and accomplishments in the resume or to the ideas emphasized in the applicant’s essays. The three letters requested to Fulbright applicants will include: applicant’s full name, field of study and country of application as well as recommender’s contacts, full name, title and signature along with a brief description of recommender’s qualifications. The reference should also include: recommender’s insight of the applicant’s skills and academic performance (at individual and group level), along with specific examples of strengths and qualifications; an evaluation of the applicant’s commitment to the field and ability to handle the major concepts and themes of the program; comments on the applicant’s character, emotional maturity, responsibility and exercise of leadership, sense of fair-play; comments on the achievability of the proposed study/research objectives; reasons why the applicant deserves the Fulbright grant and why his/her presence in the U.S. is necessary. The reviewers expect to find evidence that the applicant has attained high academic level and excellence in his/her field of knowledge.

Q: When and how to approach the recommenders?

A: Approach recommenders a few months ahead of the application period so that they have enough time to write the letter. Provide them with an updated version of your resume or CV, the profile of the institution/department you intend to apply, as well as other useful documents such as transcripts. We also suggest that recommenders read the applicant’s statement of purpose. The references should come from university professors and/or other acknowledged Romanian or foreign professionals, usually from academics who know/have known you well in class and from people who know you well outside class (professional environment as well as extracurricular activities or volunteering). Stay in touch with your recommenders throughout the process and make sure you provide whatever information they need.

Q: The application is always available online. Why am I supposed to comply with certain deadlines?

A: The online application form is universal for all countries participating in the Fulbright program and can be accessed any time. However each country has its own timeline and applicants are expected to strictly obey the rules established by the Fulbright Commission in charge with the respective national program.

Q: Can a Fulbright Student grantee be accompanied by family during the Fulbright program he/she is carrying out?

A: Yes. Student Fulbrighters can be accompanied by family members. However the Fulbrighter must provide evidence, such as personal declaration and bank statement, to demonstrate that dependents can sustain themselves, regardless of Fulbright grant that serves only for grantee’s study purposes. Grantees accompanied by dependents must provide adequate health and accident insurance for the accompanying family. Failure to do so violates the terms and conditions of award and may result in termination of the grantee’s program.

B. FULBRIGHT SENIOR (POSTDOCTORAL) AWARD


Q: How many Fulbright grants are awarded annually to Romanian professors and researchers?

A: Recently 8 Fulbright Senior awards have been offered to Romanian applicants. This means that the number of awards is not fixed and can vary depending on the amount of available resource and the yearly budget of the Commission.

Q: What does the Fulbright Senior award include?

A:The Fulbright Senior Award offers a monthly stipend for accommodation and living expenses, accident/sickness insurance and a professional allowance. The award also covers the international travel costs to and from the U.S. (roundtrip ticket).

An amount is also assigned if dependents accompany the grantee more than 80% of the length of the grant.

In addition, the Fulbright Commission offers all the grantees one day Orientation Program as pre-departure assistance, in July. While in the U.S., the Fulbright grantees receive further support from the Council of International Exchanges of Scholars (CIES).

Q:Is an invitation letter from the host university in the U.S. to Fulbright Senior applicants required from the very beginning?

A: All Fulbright Senior applicants are strongly encouraged to attach invitations from their U.S. host university from the very beginning. The presence of the invitation may add to the value of the application in terms of feasibility and significance of project. However the invitation may come after the deadline of application, no later than December.

Q: In case I am not selected, may I receive any feedback and find out the reasons?

A: Unfortunately, no. Each year the number of well-qualified applicants exceeds the number of grants available. It is the policy of the Commission 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.

Q: In case I am not selected, will I be notified by the representatives of the Fulbright Commission?

A: As a general rule, only the applicants qualified in the next phase of the competition are notified.

Q: I am not able to be present at the interview. May I be interviewed on the telephone and will my application still be considered?

A: Unfortunately, no. It is essential for the candidates to be present at the interview, which is held in Bucharest in early January. This is an absolute requirement of the program as the interview is considered a significant component of the Fulbright competition.

Q: Who reviews the applications and who is on the interview committee?

A:For the peer screening, the applications are reviewed by two specialists in their respective field (as a rule, an American and a Romanian specialist). The peer evaluation of the professional level of the applicant's proposal is based on the following criteria: significance of the proposed theme to the field; importance of the project to the home country; clarity of the proposal; academic credentials; evidence that research/teaching in the U.S. is necessary to accomplish the project; feasibility of project in terms of available time and resources; plans to disseminate research findings or teaching experience upon return.

Concerning the interview stage – a nomination committee composed of American and Romanian specialists will evaluate the candidates focusing on specific aspects such as motivation, adaptability, project impact and benefit for home country. As a rule, the committee members are senior academics and accomplished professionals, U.S. Embassy representatives, and Fulbright alumni.

Q: Is there any circumstance in which the number of months I have proposed for my project be reduced to a shorter period?

A: Yes. The number of months suggested by the Fulbright applicant will be finally approved by the Fulbright Board of Directors and can be condensed if it is considered that the project could be fulfilled in a shorter period. Length of the grant can also be reduced depending on the funding the Commission receives each year.

Q: Can a Fulbright scholar be accompanied by family during the Fulbright program he/she is carrying out?

A: Yes. Senior Fulbrighters can be accompanied by family members. If dependents accompany the grantee more than 80% of the length of the grant an amount is also assigned as a category of the Fulbright grant. Grantees accompanied by dependents must provide adequate health and accident insurance for the family. Failure to do so violates the terms and conditions of award and may result in termination of the grantee’s program.

Q: Can the award be postponed until the following year?

A: No. Fulbright Awards are not deferrable. Candidates are recommended to reapply in this case.

Q: Are Fulbright awards granted for research/teaching in a third country?

A: No. Fulbright grants to Romanian citizens are awarded only for research/teaching in the United States of America.

Q: Is Romanian citizenship a condition for eligibility in the grant program?

A: Yes. Only Romanian citizens can apply to the program administered by the Fulbright Commission in Romania. Green card holders are not eligible.

Q: I hold dual citizenship-Romanian and American. Am I eligible to apply for a Fulbright grant in Romania?

A: No. But you may apply for a Fulbright grant in the U.S., as an American citizen.

Q: The application is always available online. Why am I supposed to comply with certain deadlines?

A: The online application form is universal for all countries participating in the Fulbright program and can be accessed any time. However each country has its own timeline and applicants are expected to strictly obey the rules established by the Fulbright Commission in charge with the respective national program.

Q: The online application system directed me to ask for permission from the Fulbright Commission before I proceed.  What should I do?

A: As a rule, this message is intended to ensure that you meet the minimum eligibility requirements.  If you follow the online instructions for the Visiting Scholar Award applicants and the information included in the official competition advertisement for Romanian citizens (pls. check our website), you do not need to contact the Commission; you may go on with your application.

Q: I have had previous academic experience in the United States. Am I eligible to apply for a Fulbright grant?

A: Yes. Applicants who have had previous U.S. academic experience may receive awards, but preference is given to applicants without such experience.

Q: Under which visa category do grantees participate in the Fulbright program?

A: All non-U.S. Fulbright grantees are required to travel on "J" visas under Exchange-Visitor Program (Number G-1-00005) for the duration of their financial sponsorship. As a condition of “J” visa - after completion of the academic program, all scholars must come back to Romania and live in the home country for two years before being eligible to immigrate, apply for permanent residence, or a work permit, in the United States.

Q:  Can the letters of recommendation still be considered if they are provided after the application deadline?

A: The letters of recommendation will be considered (only) if they are sent by the deadline.

My fulbright experience

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Students at the advising center

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Romanian-U.S. Fulbright Commission

Adress: 2 Ing. Nicolae Costinescu Street, sector 1, Bucharest, Romania
Phone: 021.230.77.19
Fax: 021.230.77.38
E-mail: office@fulbright.ro

Fulbright Educational Advising Center

Phone: 021.231.90.15
E-mail: feac@fulbright.ro

 Public hours

Tuesday: 1:00 PM - 7:00 PM
 Wednesday: 1:00 PM - 5:00 PM
 Thursday: 1:00 PM - 5:00 PM