Fulbright Master's Degree Fellowships

Program Overview

USIEF plans to award up to five Fulbright Master’s Program fellowships to outstanding students planning to begin Master’s degree studies at American universities in the fall semester of the 2020/2021 academic year.

This program is open to students in all fields of study, except medicine, nursing and other clinical fields in which hands-on contact with patients is required.

Candidates who have been accepted to the Fulbright Master's Degree Fellowship Program can choose between two placement tracks.

Track 1: Self Placement

In this track, the candidates will research their own degree program options and independently submit, track, and follow-up on application status, university cost-share, and final admission offers. No assistance will be provided by IIE’s University Placement division at any stage during the process for candidates who have selected this track. The grant in this track is limited by a cap that is derived from the average cost of studies in a U.S. academic institute. In this track, the submission plan is not limited to a specific number of institutions.

Prospective candidates are encouraged to contact EducationUSA center for information on American universities and the programs of study that they offer.

Track 2: IIE Placement

In this track, the candidates do not apply directly for admission to US universities. Instead, submission of their applications for admission is carried out by the Institute for International Education (IIE).  IIE formulates a submission plan on the basis of the candidates’ preferences, the placement officer's evaluation of the candidates’ qualifications relative to university admission standards, financial consideration and geographical diversity and considerations growing out of Fulbright program objectives.

Application submission, admission and placement at academic institutions which are far from the top of popular ranking lists may occur especially in two-year programs, and in disciplines where tuition cost sharing is less attainable and tuition costs stay high even while going down the ranking list, such as business administration, public health, architecture, practical art, practical film making, and more. Still, an academic and cultural experience which is both enriching and empowering can be obtained even in U.S. institutions which have lower brand recognition is Israel. In this track, the submission plan is limited to four institutions.

Grant Benefits

  • tuition and fees for a maximum of two years;
  • monthly maintenance allowance, fixed according to IIE estimates, for a maximum of two years for the grantee only;
  • book, professional enhancement and equipment allowances;
  • health insurance  for the grantee only for the duration of the grant;
  • roundtrip airfare from Tel Aviv to the US academic institution for the grantee only;
  • pre-departure orientation meeting in June;
  • a support agency in the U.S. that assists with visas, events and networking.

Eligibility Criteria

  • Candidates must be Israeli citizens. Dual American-Israeli citizens or permanent residents of the United States are not eligible to apply.
  • Candidates will be considered without regard to race, religion, gender, age, and/or physical impairment.
  • Candidates must be resident in Israel at the time of application and must continue to be resident in Israel until the beginning of their studies in the United States as Fulbright Fellows.  Candidates working, residing, or studying outside of Israel are not eligible to apply.
  • Students who have already begun their program of studies in the United States or who are planning to begin study in the US before the 2020 Fall semester are not eligible to apply.
  • Those who have already been awarded Bachelor’s degrees and students who will complete their Bachelor’s degree studies during the 2018/2019 academic year are eligible to apply. Selected candidates will be required to provide proof that they have been awarded a Bachelor’s degree by December 31, 2019.
  • Candidates who have already received a Master’s degree are not eligible to request a Fulbright Master’s Fellowship in support of study towards the receipt of an additional Master’s degree.
  • Students in medicine, dental medicine, veterinary medicine, nursing and other programs which involve treatment of patients are not eligible for Fulbright grants.
  • Candidates who have applied on two occasions in the past and whose applications have not been accepted are not eligible to reapply.
  • All candidates, including those who have studied in English-speaking countries, must submit a recent TOEFL score. No application will be considered without a valid official TOEFL score.  When registering for the TOEFL, be sure to note that your score should be sent to USIEF, code 5373, and to IIE, code 2326. Visit the ETS website for further information.
  • All candidates, except those in law, must submit a recent GRE score. No application will be considered without a valid official GRE score. When registering for the GRE, be sure to note that your score should be sent to USIEF, code 5373, and to IIE, code 2326. Visit the GRE website for further information.
  • Prior to their departure, nominees must provide proof of financial coverage for all expenses exceeding the grant, according to IIE's guidelines.
  • Candidates must be in good health. All applicants selected for a Fulbright grant are required to submit a Medical History and Examination Report before their grants can be activated.
  • Prior conviction or current indictment for a felony may result in disqualification.

Evaluation Criteria

  • Academic excellence.
  • Leadership qualities
  • Demonstrable ambassadorial skills required to promote mutual understanding between the United States and Israel. Fulbright fellows serve as cultural ambassadors and should be prepared to speak about their countries, cultures and research to academic and community groups.
  • Potential for gaining value from the program.
  • English language proficiency.
  • Since the aim of the Fulbright Program is to foster cultural understanding between the US and Israel, preference will be given to applicants who have not had a substantial recent academic experience in the United States or another English-speaking country.

Conditions of Award

  • Funding is for a maximum of two years for the grantee only.
  • While applicants’ personal academic and professional plans and university preferences are taken into consideration, candidates should be aware that the final decision as to which programs of study will be supported by Fulbright Master’s Degree Fellowships is made by the United States Department of State, taking into account all relevant considerations.
  • Prospective candidates who plan to earn a PhD at a later stage at an Israeli university are strongly advised to check in advance whether and to what extent credits earned in an American Master’s degree program will be recognized by the Israeli PhD programs in which they wish to enroll.
  • Grantees must travel on a J-1 Exchange Visitor visa sponsored by the Fulbright program.
  • After completion of their Master’s program, Fulbright grantees are eligible to apply for a visa for up to 12 months of academic training (provided the fellow has a concrete job offer).
  • It is a condition of the visa that after completion of their Fulbright program, including any transfer of visa sponsorship, grantees must return to Israel and reside in the country for two years before being eligible to immigrate to the US, to take up permanent residence there, or to enter the US with a work permit. The purpose of the two-year home residency requirement is to ensure that exchange visitors return home and fulfill the exchange objectives of the Fulbright program.
  • Holders of J-1 student visas who have departed from the United States after a stay of six or more months will be required to remain abroad for up to twelve months before being allowed to re-enter the United States with a J-1 professor/research scholar visa.
  • The above restrictions do not apply to re-entry to the United States as the holder of a J visa in another category (short-term scholar, specialist, international visitor), or as the holder of a student or tourist visa.
  • Dependents of grantees will enter the US as holders of J-2 visas. Many conditions applying to the grantees as holders of J-1 visas, such as the two-year home residency requirement and other restrictions, also apply to the holders of J-2 visas.
  • Unless they have received a waiver of the two-year home residence requirement, Fulbright Students, holding J-1 visas, are ineligible to change their status from J-1 to J-2 while in the US. Similarly, accompanying dependents, who possess J-2 visas, are ineligible to change their status from J-2 to J-1 while in the US, unless they have received a waiver of the home residence requirement.
  • Grantees must begin their studies in the United States no later than the fall semester of the 2020/2021 academic year.
  • Awards cannot be deferred to the following academic year.

The Interview Process

The highest-ranked candidates will be invited for an interview.  All interviews are held on the same day. In order to be considered for an award, applicants must be available for interview in person on the date fixed by USIEF.

It should be noted that initial admission to the program does not guarantee that a candidate will be awarded a fellowship. Various additional conditions apply, mainly the requirement of admission to at least one academic program in the U.S. whose overall cost is within the budget, and for that matter even receive cost sharing from the academic institute. The final decision whether or not to award a scholarship will be made by the United States Department of State. It should also be noted that, if it is decided to offer a fellowship to a candidate, for IIE-placed candidates the Department of State retains sole authority to select the institution at which the candidate’s studies will be supported. Candidate preferences will be taken into account when making such decisions, but other considerations, such as cost, geographic distribution, etc. will also be taken into account.

The Foundation reserves the exclusive right to determine, within the framework of applicable law and regulations, the qualitative standards for the evaluation of applications and the selection of the candidates to be referred for placement.  The Foundation is not under any obligation to provide the reasons for its decisions regarding the allocation of Fellowships.

Timetable for 2020/2021

Earliest date for submission of applications March 01, 2019
Final deadline for submission of applications June 01, 2019
Academic referees review applications June 2019
Interviews of finalists July 2019
Candidates notified of results July 2019
Placement process begins September-October 2019
J. William Fulbright Foreign Scholarship Board approves selection of candidates October 2019
Nominees notified if accepted to studies by American universities April 2020
Program Fellows begin studies in the United States  August 2020, Fall semester

Alumni Experience

Ido Sivan Silva

Public Policy

University of Minnesota, 2012

Frequently Asked Questions

I hold dual citizenship – both Israeli and American. Am I eligible to apply for a Fulbright award?
No. Only Israeli citizens are eligible to apply. Israeli citizens holding citizenship of another country other than the U.S. in addition to Israel are eligible to apply.
I am already enrolled in a program in the U.S. May I apply for a Fulbright award to complete my program?
No. Fulbright awards are granted to applicants who have not commenced their programs in the U.S.
I am a qualified medical doctor. May I apply for the post-doctoral program?
Yes, if you intend to carry out research in the United States, which will not involve you in clinical contact with patients. Post-doctoral Fellowships are not available to support clinical internships.
Can I avail myself of a Fulbright award for a project that I want to work on in Israel?
No. Fulbright awards are for study/research in the United States only.
Are Fulbright grants available for attending conferences, seminars and paper presentations in the U.S. and other countries?
Fulbright grants are not awarded for these purposes.
Are Fulbright grants available for Master’s/ Bachelor’s studies in the U.S.?
Fulbright grants are not available for undergraduate studies in the U.S. USIEF offers a Master’s degree program, which is open to candidates in all disciplines, except business administration and, architecture, art and fields in which clinical contact with patients is required.
How do I apply for an award?
You should read the Instructions and Information and submit your Application Form using the Applications Embark online system. Applications which are not submitted online cannot be considered.
The Online-Application link for registration will be available in early 2019.

For inquiries:

Sandy Mattar, Programs Manager

Tel: 03-517-2131 ex.204

Email: SMattar@fulbright.org.il.

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