Africa Regional Research Program
Number of recipients
In addition to being a prestigious academic exchange program, the Fulbright Program is designed to expand and strengthen relationships between the people of the United States and citizens of other nations and to promote international understanding and cooperation. To support this mission, Fulbright Scholars may be asked to give public talks, mentor students, and otherwise engage with the host community, in addition to their primary activities.
Conduct research in up to three Sub-Saharan African countries. The Africa Regional Research Program (ARRP) has two overall objectives: (1) to increase or develop new contacts and intellectual ties between U.S. and African communities and (2) to contribute to scholarship on Africa. The most competitive proposals will be those that describe a significant and achievable research project and that demonstrate commitment to developing scholarly relationships with African faculty. Grantees are expected to give occasional lectures and seminars in consultation with host universities and U.S. Embassies and provide copies of their research findings to their host colleagues or institutions.
ARRP applications are accepted for countries in the region with active Fulbright U.S. Scholar programs, except South Africa. Research-only proposals for South Africa must be submitted separately under the South Africa awards. Those interested in conducting research in North Africa (Egypt and Morocco) should apply for the Middle East and North Africa Regional Research Program.
Continuous Grant Period: If applying for one continuous grant period, applicants can propose to conduct research either in one country for three to nine months, or in two or three countries for five to nine months total. *Applicants proposing more than one country must propose to stay in each country for at least one month.
Flex Grant: The Flex option is available for scholars who require multiple visits to the host country or countries. Applicants should clearly indicate plans for Flex in their project statement, including a project timeline. Host institution letters of invitation should also confirm the timeline proposed. See FLEX Description below for more information on FLEX scheduling.
For each proposed country, applicants must arrange affiliation and include a letter of invitation from an African university. If the institution you are interested in working with is not an African university, please contact IIE before requesting a letter of invitation.
See Grant Activity section for details.
As early as August 2023; no later than January 2024. For Flex grants, the first grant segment must begin between August 2023 and January 2024. The final Flex segment must be completed no later than two years after the first segment begins.
Host institution letters of invitation should also confirm the timeline proposed.
The Flex Award is designed for scholars who require multiple visits to the host country. This option allows grants to be conducted over two or three short segments. Applicants must select Flex in the application form, and clearly describe their plans for Flex in their project statement, including a project timeline. Flex grantees may be asked to give public talks, mentor students, and otherwise engage with the host-country academic community.
A letter of invitation from each proposed host institution, confirming the applicant's proposed timeline, must be submitted at the time of application.
Applicants are encouraged to register qualified language evaluator, such as a language instructor or a translator, to conduct the external assessment in the application. Being a native speaker alone does not qualify an individual to conduct the assessment.
Applicants who are native speakers do not need to complete an external evaluation.
Appropriate language facility is needed for research in non-English speaking areas. Applicants should clearly describe language requirements for the proposed research in the project statement and submitt a Language Proficiency Evaluation if research will require non-English langauge proficiency.
Evidence of a scholarly research record after obtaining Ph.D. or equivalent terminal degree in field of specialization for the proposed project is required.
Monthly benefits will follow the rates for Researchers for Core Fulbright U.S. Scholar grants in each proposed country.
Round-trip, economy-class, international travel arranged by travel agent designated by IIE, for scholar and up to two accompanying dependents for consecutive grant periods. A $2,050-$2,850 allowance will be provided to cover the costs associated with relocation and excess baggage. For Flex grants: round trip travel will be included for each segment of the grant for the grantee only. Dependent travel will not be provided.
$3,000 research allowance. Country-specific book allowance not provided for ARRP grants.
For grantees proposing a continuous grant period, a dependent education allowance of up to $12,500 per child or $25,000 per family for accompanying dependents in grades K-12 is reimbursed for a full academic year, upon submission of receipts, and depending on funding availability. Amount may be adjusted for shorter grant periods. Reimbursement is based on actual cost of tuition and fees only. Flex grants: dependent tuition allowance will not be provided.
Dependents must accompany the grantee for at least 80% of the period abroad and a minimum of one semester in order to qualify for additional dependent benefits. Dependent benefits are not provided to Flex grantees.
Please refer to the figures above for an estimate of total monthly Fulbright award benefits. Benefits may include a monthly base stipend, living and housing allowances, and additional one-time allowances. Benefits may vary based on a scholar's current academic rank (or professional equivalent), the city of placement, the type of award (teaching, teaching/research, or research), and the number of and duration of stay of accompanying dependents. Research-only or Professional Project grantees receive a standard stipend that is not adjusted for academic rank. In most cases, dependent benefits will not be provided to Flex grantees, or to grantees pursuing grants less than four months (or a semester) in length.
Final grant amounts will be determined prior to the start of the academic year and are subject to the availability of funds. The United States Department of State reserves the right to alter, without notice, participating countries, number of awards and allowances.
The Republic of Benin is a West African country of more than 10 million people, known for its vibrant culture and for its history as a tolerant and democratic country. Since 1990, the country has transitioned power peacefully and has been cited as one of the best political models in the West African Sub-region, though some observers are concerned about recent electoral changes and restrictions on free expression. The government of Benin has introduced several reforms at the level of primary, secondary and university education. Some of these measures include i) introducing the teaching of English language at state-owned primary schools, ii) making proficiency in English a key requirement for Master and PhD students, iii) evaluating and reclassifying all public schools teachers, iv) suspending non-accredited private schools and universities, including the establishment of a national exam to certify degrees conferred by private institutions.
Benin has two major public university systems, the University of Abomey Calavi in the South and the University of Parakou in the North, each with several satellite campuses. In addition, several private universities have a growing need for qualified academics to lecture and conduct research in areas such as: literature, linguistics, agribusiness, finance, management, economics, and American Studies. The academic year generally begins in October and ends in June. French language is required to facilitate interaction with students and for use in daily life.
The U.S. Embassy located in the capital city Cotonou offers guidance on visa, housing and security issues. English language schools are available for dependent children in grades K-12 who accompany scholars. The Embassy in is committed to building Beninese youth and students’ capacities in entrepreneurship, women's empowerment or English language acquisition through training, outreach programs and daily sessions held inside the embassy. Fulbright Scholars can greatly contribute in achieving such goals.
The academic year consists of two semesters: August to December and January to May. English medium schools (otherwise known referring to private schools), including Westwood International, Maru-a-Pula, Northside, Thornhill, Broadhurst Primary School, Rainbow International School, Al-Nur International School, and Hillcrest are available in Gaborone for dependent children in grades K-12 who accompany the Scholar. Other towns may have private schools as well.
Burkina Faso is a landlocked country in Western Africa that borders Benin, Cote d'Ivoire, Ghana, Mali, Niger, and Togo. The geography of Burkina Faso is mostly flat savanna. The official language is French with many ethnic group languages such as Moore, Dioula Fulfulde, etc. The academic year consists of two semesters: mid-September to the end of February and April through June. An English language school, the International School of Ouagadougou, is available for dependent children in grades K-12 who accompany the Scholar.
In Cameroon, undergraduate classes are large (350-3,500+ students) in public schools but advanced and graduate classes are smaller (less than 350). The academic year runs from October through July. There are two semesters: October-January and February-June.
Cameroon has an official bilingual policy. However, French speakers outnumber English speakers by a 4:1 ratio. Therefore, working knowledge of French is recommended.
There are several international-standard elementary (primary) schools in Yaounde and Douala for dependent children in Pre-K and K-12. Grantees residing outside of these two cities will need to research school options and decide if they are appropriate for their dependents.
Michael Takafor Ndemanu, 2021 Fulbright Scholar - https://www.bsu.edu/news/press-center/archives/2020/8/associate-prof-earns-fulbright-to-help-a-cameroon-university
Cote d'Ivoire's estimated population of 24 million comprise 60 ethno-linguistic groups, approximately equally divided between Christians, Muslims, and animist/spiritualists along a 40:40:20 split. The northern part of the country is predominantly Muslim while the coastal southern areas are mainly Christian. One-quarter of Cote d'Ivoire's residents are non-Ivorian citizens due to a combination of factors, including the country's modern history as a refuge for those fleeing regional wars as well as post-independence government policies seeking to attract skilled and unskilled labor. Ivorians are proud of their tradition of welcoming hospitality and peaceful tolerance and, following bouts of serious civic strife and violence in the past two decades, the country is positioning itself to be a regional economic hub and bridge between francophone and anglophone Africa. Cote d'Ivoire is the region's fastest growing economy with, on average, 8-9% growth annually, albeit with significant disparities in income and literacy that, if unchecked, pose serious dangers to the country's stability. Together with Ghana, Cote d'Ivoire accounts for nearly three-quarters of the world's cocoa and coffee production.
US Embassy Abidjan actively manages a portfolio of political engagement and economic, health, and infrastructural development programs overseen by U.S. Agency for International Development, the Centers for Disease Control, the Department of State, and the Millennium Challenge Corporation (MCC) which signed a five-year $525 million Compact with the Government of Cote d'Ivoire in 2017 targeting agricultural and pedagogical infrastructure development.
The Ethiopian government has rapidly expanded tertiary education and embarked on an education reform program that has led to the establishment of new universities throughout the country in the past fifteen years. From two universities in 1991 to currently 45 public universities, 5 specialized universities, 10 vocational and technical colleges, and several private universities.
Expanding access to higher education in Ethiopia dramatically increased student enrollment, the number of institutions and disciplines, extension programs, and capital spending over the past decade. However, the quality of education declined due to the lack of qualified and capable university professors. The proportion of faculty possessing a PhD degree dropped from 28 percent in 1995-1996 to just 5 percent in 2009-2010. Under Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed’s leadership, the Ministry of Science and Higher Education is focused on three broad challenges in tertiary education: capacity building, faculty development, and science.
Ethiopian universities are led by young, energetic faculty and an administration eager to host foreign scholars. For newer universities, deans and department chairs may be under the age of thirty-five, hold only a master’s degree, and lack strong managerial, international or leadership experience. Students are eager to learn, to acquire knowledge, and to develop skills that will lead to employment opportunities or post-graduate studies.
The U.S. Embassy, Public Affairs Section (PAS Addis) believes that American scholars can play a key role in Ethiopia’s building capacity and mentoring faculty in the higher education sector. Scholars willing to come to Ethiopia should share their experiences and knowledge by assisting with teaching, curriculum development, research, publications, seminars, mentorship, grant writing, professionalism, intellectual rigor and integrity, and promoting partnerships between U.S. and Ethiopian universities. PAS Addis is focused on strengthening graduate-level programs among seven first generation universities in the disciplines of agriculture, business, economics, engineering, journalism and communications, public health and health sciences, information science, law, social sciences, and technology.
PAS Addis encourages prospective applicants to consider host institutions located outside the capital city of Addis Ababa. In regional cities, university facilities and infrastructure, living conditions and qualify of life, accommodations, and academic programs have improved, but are still developing. Prospective applicants may wish to contact the host institution and PAS Addis for specific information before submitting an application. Dual affiliations are also encouraged, which enable scholars to teach and research at two universities. Dual affiliations require letters of invitations from both institutions and must be included in the application. Requests to add a second university upon arrival or after a few months will be denied.
Applicants should contact PAS Addis at PASaddis@state.gov with questions about host institutions.
Ghana has many educational and cultural sites throughout the country. Fulbrighters are encouraged to travel throughout the country during their stay.
Some Fulbrighters decide to buy or lease a car for ease of transportation, but transporation apps like Uber, Bolt and Yango are often utilized in major cities. There are also car rental or travel companies provide a driver with the vehicle, which is great for local trips or hosting visiting guests.
If bringing your school-aged child to Ghana, then there are several international-standard K-12 schools in Accra, Kumasi, and Cape Coast. Since space is limited with international schools, scholars should make arrangements for placement well in advance.
Getting involved in community, departmental activities and mentorship are great ways to give back and remain connected while in-country. Fulbright U.S. Scholars are encouraged by the U.S. Embassy to give talks to students seeking to study in the United States working with EducationUSA Centers and share about American culture and history with the American Spaces team. These are great opportunities to share your professional expertise and American culture in Ghana.
The Republic of Guinea has endured a turbulent history, most recently as the epicenter of the West African Ebola outbreak of 2014-2015. Guinea has great economic potential, particularly in the mining, agriculture, and power sectors. While this diverse and fascinating country remains at the bottom of many lists in human and economic development, the trend is positive as its position has improved in recent years.
Guinea, having endured colonialism, followed by decades of dictatorship, mismanagement, poverty, and disease, is slowly developing its economic and democratic potential. Following the official end of the West African Ebola crisis in 2016, which caused significant economic damage and took a toll on the country’s health care system, Guinea now looks to strengthen its nascent democracy as well as encourage economic and social development.
Guinea's Fulbright program aims to serve as a consultative system for the country's educational system. American scholars have an expertise in their fields which they can leverage to go beyond simple classroom teaching. In Guinea, Fulbright Scholars regularly serve as consultants to government ministries (health, culture, education, etc.) and can make real, concrete contributions to advance Guinea's development. Our Guinean partners recognize the quality of American scholarship and are eager to harness this quality for positive change.
Guinea's academic calendar can best be described as sporadic: classes are frequently cancelled at the last minute, and confusion and obscurity surround the exact starting and ending dates of academic terms. Fulbright Scholars must be flexible and comfortable with a significant amount of ambiguity, and are encouraged to view these unexpected delays and cancellations as opportunities to pursue their own programs. That said, classes generally begin between the beginning of October and November and end sometime in June or July.
As there is a lack of development, infrastructure, and leisure activities, Fulbright Scholars in Conakry can enjoy a close relationship with the American Embassy community if they so desire. Fulbright Scholars will be welcomed into the community and will be notified of Embassy events, outings, etc. should they wish to participate. Fulbright Scholars are always welcome to consult with the Public Affairs Section of the Embassy in the event they need guidance as to their programs or duties, or if they need advice navigating Guinea's cultural landscape.
Upon arrival, Fulbright Scholars receive a welcome orientation at the Embassy which includes a brieifing with the Ambassador or Deputy Chief of Mission, the Embassy's security officer, the Embassy's health practitioner, and the Consul or the Vice Consul.
Conakry currently has two schools approaching international standards for dependent children in grades K-12: the Lycee Albert Camus (French language instruction, with a stringent language proficiency entrance exam) and the American International School of Conakry (English-language instruction).
The Embassy encourages interested candidates to contact the Public Affairs Section of the Embassy at ConakryPD@state.gov if they have questions about the program or the country. They hope you consider choosing Guinea for your Fulbright service. What is possible in Guinea is limited only by your imagination and energy!
The new U.S.-Kenya strategic partnership elevates Kenya as a leader in East Africa and an essential U.S. partner in building prosperity, democracy, and security in the region. To fulfill its potential, Kenya must overcome significant internal challenges: weak democratic institutions, ethnic and political tensions, and restricted economic growth. Kenya is young with 75 percent of its population under 30. Youth and marginalized populations do not receive adequate education or economic opportunities, thus increasing the vulnerability of some audiences to extremist messaging.
The U.S. Embassy Public Affairs programs are meant to encourage dialogue among all Kenyans; promote STEAM education and EducationUSA; develop young leaders through our exchanges; engage our alumni; train and support free media; create programs on entrepreneurship; promote empowerment of women and girls among others.
The academic calendar differs from university to university and is subject to change; therefore timing of the grant is sometimes subject to change as well. Any alternate placements and starting dates will be negotiated with candidates selected for awards. If bringing children along, several private schools are available for dependent children who accompany the Scholar. The International School of Kenya and Rosslyn Academy are recommended.
Madagascar is a developing island off the east coast of Africa with a population of approximately 26 million. In the early stages of the pandemic, Fulbright scholars had to curtail their programs and evacuate in compliance with health measures, but Fulbright scholars returned in November 2021. With the official limited re-opening of international borders, Madagascar has carefully resumed collaborating with approved scholars in partnership with local academic institutions in varied fields.
The United States is currently one of the largest bilateral donors to Madagascar; health programming and disaster assistance for the drought-stricken south are the largest U.S. assistance programs. With the 2018 peaceful presidential elections and the ensuing re-engagement with the Government of Madagascar, Post will continue to focus on the consolidation of Madagascar’s fragile democracy, intensified engagement on the environment and conservation, and expansion of English-language promotion efforts to support Madagascar’s economic growth and to create more opportunities for the country’s youth. Continuing to send Fulbright Scholars to Madagascar’s universities sends a clear signal of U.S. re-engagement with the country.
The academic calendar consists of three terms: September to December, January to March and April to July. English language schools for accompanying dependent school-age children include the Sir Harry Johnston Primary School in Zomba, St. Andrews Primary and High Schools and the Hillview Primary School (Limbe) in Blantyre, the Bishop Mackenzie International School (K-12) in Lilongwe, the Kamuzu Academy near Kasungu and the African Bible College Elementary School and High School in Lilongwe.
Located off the southeast coast of Africa, neighboring the French island of La Reunion, Mauritius is an island state of 1.2 million inhabitants spanning 1,865 square kilometers. The country’s political and economic situation has been stable since its independence in 1968. Mauritius also performs well in “ease of doing business” rankings, particularly when compared with other African countries. In fact, the 2020 World Bank report ranked Mauritius best in Africa for ease of doing business.
The U.S. Embassy in Mauritius has administered the Fulbright program since 1965. Our overarching goal is to reinforce and boost the ties between the United States and Mauritius/Seychelles especially in the fields of maritime security cooperation, democracy and human rights, mutually beneficial trade and investment, good governance and transparency. Our areas of interest are: maritime security, economic development especiall eCommerce, Blockchain, Artificial Intelligence, Cyber Security, political engagement especially of women and youth, gender-based violence, and equal opportunities and access for all. The academic calendar consists of two semesters: August through December and January through July.
The Government of Mauritius (GOM) does not require a visa for U.S. citizens. However, Fulbright grantees must have certain documents to facilitate their entry into Mauritius. Grantees are encouraged to be prepared to present a valid passport, onward/return ticket, proof of sufficient funds, a letter of acceptance from the host institution with copy to the Ministry of Education, marriage certificate (if accompanied by spouse) and the Fulbright acceptance letter which itemizes the amount of the grant upon arrival. Obtaining extended visas and residence permits can be very difficult. The host institution may assist with extended visas, residence and work permits, and exemption certificates for Fulbright Scholars.
Scholars are encouraged to reach to out to the Public Affairs Section of the Embassy for guidance at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Mozambique is a beautiful Lusophone country in southeastern Africa. It is a country that is rich in natural resources, biologically and culturally diverse, and has a tropical climate. Mozambique's extensive coastline, fronting the Mozambique Channel, which separates mainland Africa from the island of Madagascar, offers some of Africa’s best natural harbors. This has allowed Mozambique an important role in the maritime economy of the Indian Ocean, while the country’s white sand beaches are an important attraction for the growing tourism industry. Fertile soils in the northern and central areas of Mozambique have yielded varied and abundant agriculture, and the great Zambezi River has provided ample water for irrigation and the basis for a regionally important hydroelectric power industry.
Surrounded by English-speaking neighbors and rapidly developing with an influx of multinational companies and investors, especially in the energy field, Mozambique will benefit from well-trained young professionals with good English skills and professional training. Mozambique has shown an expanding interest in the English Language; the country has a growing number of Mozambicans seeking study opportunities abroad, and universities are seeking to provide both teachers and students with English speaking abilities. The nascent educational system seeks to improve literacy rates where access to educational opportunities lag and improve quality of education nationally across all disciplines. Educational administration programs aim to improve future educators’ abilities to plan, manage, and evaluate the development of the education system at the societal, institutional, and classroom levels. The American School, French School, and International schools offering Cambridge and National curricula, are available in the capital city, Maputo.
The Public Affairs Section can offer housing recommendations in Mozambique. The Section also helps with initial contact to host institutions, provides pre-arrival support, and in-country briefings to facilitate the move. More details of the extent of these services are shared after a Fulbrighter is selected.
Maputo has several pharmacies with limited stocks and medicinal availability. English is not widely spoken in hospital settings. Many people living in the international community travel to South Africa for medicine and doctor visits. Malaria can be a serious problem, especially outside of urban areas.
The effects of the COVID-19 pandemic continue to evolve; for the latest information, please visit the U.S. Embassy Maputo website: https://mz.usembassy.gov/health-alert-u-s-embassy-maputo-mozambique-2/
Namibia enjoys good governance and strong democratic institutions. However, as a relatively young country, education development and building professional capacity remain top priorities of the U.S. Embassy. The Fulbright program is one of our flagship programs and has contributed significantly to improving tertiary education and increasing mutual understanding between the people of Namibia and the United States. The Public Affairs Office at the U.S. Embassy works closely with the University of Namibia and the Namibia University of Science and Technology to ensure that a Fulbright Scholar’s stay in Namibia is as comfortable and memorable as possible, and is equally beneficial to the Scholar and his/her family.
The academic calendar at the University of Namibia is a semester system from mid-January to early June and mid-July to mid-December. At the Namibia University of Science and Technology, the academic calendar is a semester system from early February to early July and mid-July to the end of November.
The Windhoek International School is available for dependent children in grades K-12 who accompany the Scholar.
Nigeria, with a population of over 200 million, is a diverse multiethnic country with a rich cultural heritage and history. Nigeria is the largest economy in Africa and its film industry, known as Nollywood, is one of the largest in the world. The country is known for its creative fashion industry that plays an important cultural role and contributes to its economy. Fulbright scholars will have many opportunities to learn about Nigerian history and culture during their exchange experience. Post provides guidance and assistance for Fulbright scholars’ welfare, safety, and security, including how to obtain assistance in an emergency. A limited number of schools are available for accompanying dependent K-12 school-age children.
Rwanda is a small land-locked country located in the Great Lakes Region of Africa. Rwanda is about the size of Massachusetts. Often called the “Land of a Thousand Hills,” Rwanda is dominated by mountain ranges and highland plateaus.
The Rwandan Government has invested extensively in education as part of its strategic plan, known as Vision 20/20, which aimed to see Rwanda become a middle-income nation by the year 2020. To this end, compulsory education has increased to 12 years. In 2009, the government changed the medium of instruction from French to English for all students above the third year of primary school. The abrupt shift has created formidable challenges for both students and teachers. TEFL needs are still great. Since 2013, the Government of Rwanda has consolidated its several public universities to form one single university: The University of Rwanda (UR). Because the reorganization of the UR college system is still incomplete, each college manages all programs that would fall under that college, even if a program is still physically located at a different college.
Rwanda also has several private higher learning institutions, the number of which has significantly increased in the past decade. The academic year spans 9 months in Rwanda, beginning in September/October and ending in June/July. It is normally divided into two semesters separated by a three-week break. In April, classes stop for two weeks to observe the mourning period and genocide commemoration.
The U.S. Embassy Kigali arranges for an in-country orientation for Fulbright and other exchange visitors upon arrival. All U.S. citizens, including Fulbright and other exchange program grantees visiting Rwanda, must obtain a visa upon entry. To stay in Rwanda for more than 30 days, grantees will be required to visit the office of immigration to request a long term visa within 15 days of arrival.
It is important to note that Rwandan immigration authorities strictly adhere to visa requirements. No exceptions will be made. The U.S. Embassy Kigali provides an updated checklist and advises approved Fulbright applicants on any changes in required documents.
All Fulbright Scholars and students planning on conducting research as part of their grant must obtain research clearance prior to conducting any field work. The U.S. Embassy Kigali advises Fubrighters to work with their chosen host institutions for guidelines on the process and preferably initiate the clearance process well prior to arrival in-country to ensure adequate time for processing and, ultimately, research on the ground. The government of Rwanda has indicated that all research students/scholars must be affiliated with approved Rwandan institutions (ministries, universities, other Rwandan agencies, etc). Please visit the Rwandan National Council for Science and Technology website for a detailed list of approved affiliation institutions.
For Fulbright researchers in health fields, the Rwandan law changed in late 2012 to require researchers in those fields to present their research permit applications to the Rwandan National Ethics Committee and pay an 850,000 RWF fee (about $1,100). Further details on the Rwandan National Ethics Committee are available on their website at Rwandan National Ethics Committee
The formal academic year in Senegal is from October through the end of July. The International School of Dakar and the Dakar Academy are available for dependent children in grades K-12 who accompany the Scholar. These schools start in August.
The university system in Senegal has been facing many challenges over the last 15 years. Scholars coming to Senegal should be flexible with their plans as adjustments may be necessary with short notice.
We can provide contact information if you need to get in touch with alumni from your host institutions.
The U.S. established diplomatic relations with Sierra Leone in 1961, following its independence from the United Kingdom. The U.S. and Sierra Leone enjoy a warm and cordial relationship. The two countries are linked by the history of slavery in the U.S., an institution that sent a large number of African slaves from present-day Sierra Leone to the then-colonies of Georgia and South Carolina. Today, thousands of Sierra Leoneans and their descendants reside in the United States. Notably, many descendants of former slaves still reside in the same region and have maintained their unique culture known as Gullah. Further, nearly two percent of Sierra Leone’s population is of Krio heritage, a group of freed slaves historically known for returning to Sierra Leone beginning in the late 1700s from Great Britain and North America.
In early 2014, the United Nations hailed Sierra Leone as a success story due to its remarkable post-conflict transition following a brutal civil war (1991-2002), which destroyed the country’s infrastructure and hampered its political, social, and economic development. But Sierra Leone’s positive trajectory was interrupted in May 2014 when the deadly Ebola epidemic struck and quickly overtook the country’s fragile health care system. Over 14,000 Sierra Leoneans contracted Ebola with more than 3,900 deaths. The economy, which had experienced a high growth rate before Ebola, contracted due to the epidemic and global drop in prices for its major iron ore exports. The epidemic was declared over in November 2015. Since, the government launched an ambitious recovery plan that has received significant donor support. In 2020, Sierra Leone was selected to develop a Millenium Challenge Corporation compact after continued improvements on the MCC scorecard.
Sierra Leone has several major public universities, including the University of Sierra Leone, Njala University, University of Makeni and Ernest Bai Koroma University of Science and Technology. The academic year consists of two semesters: September through December and February through June, with final exams conducted in July. The U.S. Embassy located in Freetown offers guidance on visa, housing and security issues. The American International School of Freetown offers educational programs for dependent children in grades K-8 who accompany the Scholar.
Eswatini is a small country situated between South Africa and Mozambique with a population of approximately 1.2 million people. It is Africa's last absolute monarchy and has the highest HIV/AIDS prevalence in the world. Universities in Eswatini face ongoing economic challenges, but are also critical players in addressing the country's problems and contributing to the future development of the Kingdom. In this environment, Fulbright Scholars will have the opportunity to make a significant impact during their grant period in the country.
The United Republic of Tanzania is located in East Africa and has an Indian Ocean coastline. Its political capital is Dodoma, while its main commercial city is Dar es Salaam. Tanzania's first official language is Kiswahili and English is the second language.The U.S. Embassy in Tanzania partners with Tanzanians in the Areas of Good governance, Health, Education, business and security. Tanzania is young – 70+ percent of its population is under 30.
Tanzania has several established Universities. Undergraduate classes are large (100-350+ students) in public Universities, but advanced and graduate classes are smaller (less than 10-30).The U.S. Embassy is dedicated to improving the quality of instruction and delivery at these institutions, while at that same time, helping to build long-term collaborations between Tanzanian and U.S. universities. Academic semesters normally run from October through December and January through June. Fulbright Scholars are expected to come for the full academic year. Tanzanian universities currently face a shortage of PhD holders and experienced faculty to help teach and develop the programs they currently offer.
Candidates are advised to correspond with potential host institutions to determine whether their specializations fit into existing programs. Submitting a letter of invitation from the host institution is not required at the application stage. However, a letter of invitation is required to obtain a research clearance and a residency permit
All Fulbright Scholars must apply for and obtain research clearance prior to travelling to Tanzania The U.S. Embassy in Dar es Salaam advises applicants to work with their chosen host institutions for guidelines on the process and preferably initiate the clearance process well prior to arrival in country to ensure adequate time for processing and, ultimately, teaching and research on the ground. The government of Tanzania has mandated that all researchers and scholars must be affiliated with approved Tanzanian Universities. Scholars must have a doctorate degree and a minimum of three years of postdoctoral university or college teaching experience
The Fulbright Program is managed in-country by the Public Affairs Section of the U.S. Embassy in Dar es Salaam. For questions please contact: email@example.com.
Cabo Verde is a hidden gem in West Africa for a Fulbright tour. The population is just under 500,000, distributed across nine inhabited islands. The country has been a stable democracy with regular elections and peaceful transfers of power since 1991. It ranks high on every human development and democracy index.
Infrastructure is close to developed country standard. Traffic flows and driver respect for pedestrians surpass most developed countries. Wonderful beachfront restaurants with high quality seafood are ubiquitous. The rocky coastline provides outstanding nightly sunsets. The population is Western oriented and anxious to continue its focus on green technologies and environmentally friendly economic development practices.
Cabo Verde has ten universities, including the public University of Cabo Verde (UniCV), with a major satellite campus on the island of São Vicente. There are a number of private universities. American private universities, such as Penn State, Wellesley College, MIT, and Bridgewater State University have exchange programs and partnerships with UniCV. The academic year generally starts in early October and runs into early July. Portuguese language is required to facilitate interaction with most students and for use in daily life. The use of English is growing, and English is required for most BA and MA programs.
The University of Cabo Verde (Uni-CV) is the largest state-run university in the country. It offers 41 bachelor's degrees, 19 master's degrees (including a medical degree), 20 associate's (technical) degrees, and 4 doctoral degrees. Uni-CV has been committed to the improvement of English language teaching and learning in Cabo Verde. Currently, 95% of the English teachers are trained at the university.
The U.S. Embassy in the capital city of Praia, Cabo Verde offers guidance on visa, housing and security issues. English language schools are not available for dependent children in grades K-12 who accompany scholars. The U.S. Embassy in Praia is committed to support Cabo Verde achieve its own sustainable development, most notably its goal of reaching 50% of renewable energy by 2045 and the promotion of environmental tourism, which constitutes 30% of GDP. Socially, the embassy has hiking and eating clubs, which exchange grantees regularly join.
The Republic of Uganda, roughly the size of Oregon and with an estimated population of 41 million, lies along the equator and is located in the center of the African continent. The country is divided into three principal geographic areas: a fertile plateau, lowland swamps, and a semi-desert region. The capital is centrally located in Kampala on the shores of Lake Victoria, which forms part of the southern border. English is the official language.
President Yoweri Museveni came to power in 1986, after decades of internal strife, and was most recently re-elected in 2021 to another five-year term. Under Museveni, Uganda has experienced relative political stability and economic growth. However, Uganda faces numerous challenges that could affect future stability, including explosive population growth, power and infrastructure constraints, corruption, underdeveloped democratic institutions, and an increase in human rights abuses.
The NRM government has increasingly restricted civil society activity, freedom of expression and association, political competition, and the media. Economic and political pressures on the government to create jobs and allow for fair political competition have led to violent political unrest in recent years. Uganda's exponential population growth and high poverty rates continue to strain government services, particularly in the education and health sectors.
Uganda is ethnically very diverse, with over fifty-six different ethnic groups and more than forty languages, most of which fall into three major language families - Bantu, Nilotic, and Central Sudanic.
Uganda has long been a regional partner with the United States in East Africa and largely shares U.S. interests in combatting terrorism and promoting stability. Uganda is host to 1.4 million refugees - the world's 3rd largest refugee population - and the leading troop contributor nation to the African Union (AU) peacekeeping mission in Somalia (AMISOM). It is a global hotspot for emerging infectious diseases working closely with U.S. government partners to detect and respond to potential global health security threats. The U.S. mission is engaged in activities and programs that promote economic growth and employability for 80% of Uganda's population who are under 35, improving health and education, upholding democratic values, strengthening security, technology and innovation, the environment and creative arts.
Uganda has several established universities. However, the U.S. embassy is committed to contributing to the growth of the newer and less established universities, which have a number of short- and long-term challenges. The U.S. Embassy is dedicated to improving the quality of instruction and delivery at these institutions, while at that same time, helping to build long-term collaborations between Ugandan and U.S. universities. Academic semesters normally run from August through December and January through May or June. Ugandan universities currently face a shortage of qualified and experienced faculty to help teach and develop the programs they currently offer. We are also interested in strengthening activities in other institutions along our strategic areas outside of academia.
The US Mission in Uganda provides overall oversight of this small but robust program in the country. We offer airport pick on initial arrival. We make it a point to involve our Fulbrighters in our American Center programs where relevant.
Housing - It is recommended that grantees contact their host institutions for best possible local housing options. Information can also be found here Lamudi Uganda http://www.lamudi.co.ug , Properties to rent and for let in Uganda | Knight Frankand a AirBnB post “houses/apartments to let” information.
Most school-aged U.S. Mission or expartriate children attend one of three schools: The International School of Uganda (ISU) - www.isu.ac.ug, the Kampala International School (KISU) - KISU – Educating Today's Children for Tomorrow's World, or Ambrosoli - www.ambrosolischool.com. There are other options depending on the ages of the children: The French School, Acorns, Heritage and Kissyfur.
Medical health care - Leading facilities in Kampala include - Mulago National Referral Hospital - Mulago National Referral Hospital | Life is Precious (mulagohospital.go.ug), Victoria Hospital - UMC Victoria Hospital (umchospitals.com), , The Surgery - The Surgery Uganda – Health Facility, Nakasero Hospital - Nakasero Hospital – Quality Care With Compassion, St.Francis Nsambya Hospital - St. Francis Hospital Nsambya – Love & Serve (nsambyahospital.or.ug), International Hospital Kampala among others.
Fulbright grantees have health care benefits under the Department of State Group Accident and Sickness Program for Exchanges (ASPE). ASPE is a health benefits program; it is not an all purpose health insurance, and it is subject to limitations. Grantees should review, Accident and Sickness Program for Exchange Participants in Programs Sponsored by the Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs. Traveler's medical insurance, particularly emergency evacuation coverage is strongly recommended, especially for grantees based outside the capital city. The Fulbright grant provides limited medical and medical evacuation (medevac) coverage for the grantee only.
Erik Blome; William Kisaalita; Priscilla Ocen; Paul Robinson; Thomas Graham; Samson Jarso
Zambia is a landlocked country in southern Africa, with a tropical climate, and consists mostly of high plateaus with some hills and mountains, dissected by river valleys. The official language of Zambia is English, which is used to conduct official business and is the medium of instruction in schools. Zambia is generally a peaceful country, although pockets of violence may occur during the time leading to general elections. Politics in Zambia take place in a framework of a presidential representative democratic republic, whereby the President of Zambia is both head of state and head of government in a pluriform multi-party system. The government exercises executive power, while legislative power is vested in both the government and parliament.
The academic calendar consists of three terms: the first term is January through March, second term is May through July and the third term is September through November/December. The American International School of Lusaka, Lusaka International Community School and the International School of Lusaka are available for dependent children in grades K-12 who accompany the Scholar.
The Public Diplomacy (PD) Section at the U.S. Embassy in Harare has prioritized and focused their program resources to strengthen Zimbabwean academic research capacities, to expand graduate-study abroad programs, instruction and curricula processes, and to contribute to Zimbabwe’s goal to internationalize campuses.
The Fulbright program in Zimbabwe aims to serve as a foundation for internationalization of campus communities and a catalyst for university partnerships with U.S. counterparts. In addition to teaching and research, American Fulbright scholars make significant contributions by guiding their host departments/institutions on how they can internationalize their programs and deepen their international partnerships.
Higher education in Zimbabwe has evolved over time from a small elite system to broad, country-wide university structure. At independence in 1980, Zimbabwe had only one university with a total enrolment of 2,200 full-time students. Currently, there are eight public and four private universities with a total enrolment of more than 43,000 full-time students. As a result, most of the country’s recently established universities started as colleges under the tutelage of the University of Zimbabwe (UZ), the country’s oldest and most well-known university. This model was designed to ensure that the new institutions had a steady stream of highly trained teaching professionals.
All universities receive accreditation from the Zimbabwe Council of Higher Education (zimche.ac.zw), however, many Zimbabwean universities do not have formal quality promotion policies or structures to meet the audit requirements. Most universities in Zimbabwe use peer review and external reviewers or examiners as the main mechanism for quality assurance. The Senate/University council is the main custodian of academic quality and acts as a quality assurance body.
The growth in the number of universities has necessitated differentiation based on unique strengths, including, but not limited to number of faculty with PhDs, research interests, multi-disciplinary collaboration and university location – rural vs urban. Older and more recognized universities have a higher ratio of established scholars whereas younger institutions tend to employ younger, enthusiastic faculty and administrators who are eager and open to engaging with international scholars. Some of the new university mandates are STEM focused to drive the country’s technological development.
During the late 1990’s to early 2000’s the University of Zimbabwe had vibrant, strategic international partnerships and global collaborative research funded by international foundations. The political and socio-economic crisis from the mid-2000s resulted in the end of these partnerships, negatively impacting new universities which had yet to make their international footprints. Today universities actively seek opportunities to engage international scholars. In 2019, the government of Zimbabwe launched Education 5.0, an initiative that adds innovation and industrialization to the three pillars of teaching, research, and community engagement on which all universities functioned. In line with Education 5.0, Zimbabwean universities compete to update existing programs to meet international best practices as a step towards internationalization.
Zimbabwean universities all run on the American semester system; August/September being the start of the new academic calendar. However, to accommodate extra students and increase revenue through student fees, some universities have additional intakes that start in March/April and then run concurrently to the mainstream calendar. For purposes of uniformity, all Fulbright scholars operate on the American academic calendar.
More recently, COVID-19 pandemic lockdowns negatively impacted academic calendars. As a result, incoming Fulbright Scholars must be flexible and adaptable to a significant amount of uncertainty. Often, these schedule shifts provide opportunities to pursue new programs and research opportunities. Fulbright Scholars are encouraged to consult with the Public Diplomacy Section of the Embassy in the event they need guidance as to their programs, duties or new projects.
Interested candidates can contact the Public Diplomacy Section of the Embassy at HararePD@state.gov if they have questions about the program or the country.
Niger’s government has expanded higher education by establishing new universities in each of the country’s eight regions. From one university in 2005, eight universities and eight Institutes of Technology have opened over the past 12 years.
The creation of these universities has given more students the opportunity to pursue higher studies by mitigating the need to travel to the capital city where living conditions can be difficult without a scholarship. The resulting increase in the number of students has impacted the quality of the teaching, due to a lack of sufficiently qualified teachers and appropriate infrastructures. Fulbright Scholars may have the potential to engage with host institutions for teaching and research projects and also explore collaborations on curriculum co-development and capacity-building.
The academic calendar is based on a two-semester system; applicants should correspond with host institutions regarding their preferred areas of specialization.
Security precautions are necessary when traveling to remote areas of Niger. The U.S. Embassy provides advice on special security considerations. Please visit www.travel.state.gov to read the Country Specific Information on Niger and to view the latest Travel Warning. Prospective applicants can also consult the Embassy Niamey website at https://ne.usembassy.gov/.
Sudan’s public universities have been in decline for decades and would greatly benefit from the presence of American scholars in a variety of fields. Although there has been an increase of private universities (primarily in the larger cities), many of these for-profit universities have low educational standards and weak administration with limited oversight on the quality of education. After nearly 20 years of inactivity, universities are eager to restart the Fulbright Scholars Program and see increased partnerships and cooperation with U.S. experts and universities as critical to reforming the quality of education nationally across all disciplines. University administration officials seek to improve future educators’ abilities to plan, manage and evaluate the development of the education system at the societal, institutional and classroom levels. Although Arabic is the primary language of instruction in schools, universities are eager to equip graduates with English speaking capabilities. Overall, Sudan offers an opportunity for cutting edge research in a variety of disciplines and opportunities to increase the institutional capacity of the university systems to deliver quality degree programs.
There are over 100 public and private universities of varying quality across the country. There is a strong concentration of students studying engineering, medicine, dentistry, pharmacology and computer sciences. The academic year in Sudan generally runs August to April but varies from one institution to another.
The U.S. Embassy in Khartoum seeks strong university partnerships and would be happy to connect scholars with preferred institutions. The Scholar will be responsible for finalizing affiliation arrangements.
In some cases, requested grant lengths may be adjusted at the discretion of the Fulbright Program.
Visit our Scholar Directory to view and search all Fulbright alumni. You can also learn more about Fulbright Alumni Ambassadors.