Fulbright U.S. Student Program

Fulbright Study/Research Grant Reference Instructions

The Fulbright Application Deadline is October 6, 2017 at 5:00 p.m. Eastern Time Eastern Time and all References MUST be submitted through the Embark online system by this time and date. No exceptions.


Fulbright applicants register referees in the Embark Fulbright Online Application system allowing them to complete the reference online so that it can be submitted with the student's application.

References must be submitted through the Embark system because the screening committees will only have access to references submitted electronically.

If you are not familiar with the Fulbright U.S. Student Program, please visit: www.us.fulbrightonline.org. The most useful sections for referees are Application Components and the Country Summary for the applicant’s proposed host country.

In completing the reference, keep in mind that the applicant will be serving as a cultural ambassador representing the United States and that personal suitability, as well as academic excellence, is an important criterion to be considered. The study/research grant applicant should provide you with the Fulbright Statement of Grant Purpose and the Personal Statement. 

Please comment on the following, as appropriate:

  • Feasibility of the applicant's proposed project in terms of the resources available and the research environment in the host country.
  • Appropriateness of the project and subject matter for the host country
  • Suitability of the proposed research methodology given the topic and the applicant’s background
  • Ability of the applicant to successfully carry out the project in the allotted time.
  • Linguistic preparation for the proposed plan.
  • Candidate's ability to adapt to a different cultural environment and to represent the U.S.
  • In the arts, the candidate's talent and potential for growth.
  • Any other factors which you believe may have a bearing on the candidate's experience overseas.

Steps to submit the reference:


Note: Only references submitted via the Embark Fulbright Online Application System will be reviewed.

The applicant will provide you with the date the reference is due.  For currently enrolled candidates or alumni applying through their alma mater, this date will be earlier than the national Fulbright application deadline. References submitted after the campus deadline may not be considered and could affect the candidate’s eligibility.

I am a....

Current U.S. Student

United States citizens who are currently enrolled in undergraduate or graduate degree programs are eligible to apply.  All applicants enrolled in U.S institutions must apply through their home campuses.  Find the Fulbright Program Adviser on your campus.

If you are an undergraduate student you would be eligible to apply in your senior year.  If you are a graduate student you are eligible to apply to most countries as long as you will not have a PhD degree on the application deadline.

Non-U.S. Student

If you are a non-U.S. citizen looking to applying for a Fulbright grant to study in the United States you will apply to the Fulbright Program for Foreign Students in your home country.

U.S. Citizen but not a Student

If you are a U.S. citizen, hold a bachelor’s degree, and do not have a PhD degree then you could be eligible for certain awards within the Fulbright U.S. Student Program.  Please review the program summary for the country where you would like to apply.


The Fulbright U.S. Student Program welcomes applications in the creative and performing arts.  Arts candidates for the U.S. Student Program should have relatively limited professional experience in the fields (typically 5 years or less) in which they are applying.  Artists with more experience should consider applying for Fulbright Scholar Program.

Creative & Performing Arts projects fall under the Study/Research grant category and are available in all countries where Study/Research grants are offered. 



U.S. Professor

If you are a U.S. citizen and a professor at a U.S. institution and are interested in applying for a Fulbright Scholar Award you will need to apply through CIES.

Non U.S. Professor

If you are a non-U.S. citizen and a professor interested in applying for a Fulbright Scholar Award to the United States you would need to apply through the Fulbright Commission or U.S. Embassy in your home country.  Find out more information on the Fulbright Visiting Scholar Program.