Established by Congress in 1946, the Fulbright Program awards 7,500 grants annually to individuals and institutions. Funded by an annual appropriation made by the United States Congress to the Department of State and managed by the Institute of International Education, the Fulbright Program sponsors students, scholars, teachers and professionals internationally. Competing candidates must submit a letter of affiliation (synonymously referred to as letters of support, invitation, or admission) with a completed application to be considered for a Fulbright grant. A Fulbright letter of affiliation can be from the host institution, organization or individual, indicating research support or access to specialized facilities, or stating that the administering institution provides courses in the applicant's area of expertise. For more information, please visit Fulbright.state.gov.
You may collaborate with the host affiliation to draft your Fulbright letter by asking the host affiliation for permission to do so, but write the letter in third, not first, person. For example, "Jane Smith (your name) is a recognized leader in the field of (your field of study) and has written numerous best-selling books."
State the country to which you are applying and the date of your application in the upper left-hand corner on institutional letterhead of the host affiliation. Begin the letter with, "Dear Fulbright Committee:" and introduce yourself and the host affiliation in your opening paragraph. Include your name, the proposed research project and the name of the host affiliation with its address.
In paragraph two, provide an overview of the host affiliation and how it is relevant to your work. Summarize the importance of the work you are doing in the third paragraph. Supply further details about the host affiliation in the fourth paragraph.
In paragraph five, describe how your specialty is a good match for the host affiliation, and give compelling evidence that your skill set is wanted and needed. For example, it could read, "Our organization is looking forward to having a person like Jane Smith (your name) on our team. We are in need of someone who possesses the skills she will bring to our organization."
Mail hard copies of your application and letters to the Fulbright program to which you are applying before the due date. You may send Fulbright letters of affiliation via U.S. mail independently after the application deadline. However, there is no guarantee that an affiliation letter sent separately from the application will be received in time to be reviewed by the committee at the time that the corresponding application is being considered. If possible, mail your letter(s) of affiliation with your application, so that they will be reviewed at the same time.
- If your proposal involves independent research, your letter of affiliation is crucial in establishing the feasibility of your project.
- Check the countries summaries for specific details as to what is expected of a Fulbright candidate.
- The Fulbright U.S. Student Program prefers applicants who have not recently done extensive study in the country in which they are applying to work.
- The Fulbright Program does not accept letters of support, recommendations or foreign language reports sent via fax or email. You must submit all materials in hard copy.
Tracy Stefan began writing professionally in 2007, with work appearing on various websites. She earned a Bachelor of Arts in creative writing and performing arts from the Evergreen State College. Stefan is also a graduate of Dell'Arte.