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. If applying for a Flex grant, the minimum grant length is 4 months and the maximum is 6 months. The minimum length of a grant segment is one month. See FLEX Description below for more information on FLEX scheduling.
If you are interested in pursuing research in a country that does not offer an active U.S. Scholar award, please reach out to firstname.lastname@example.org to inquire if this may be possible.
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 2024; no later than March 2025. For Flex grants, the first grant segment must begin between August 2024 and March 2025. 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.
For information on additional dependent benefits, monthly benefits will follow the rates for Researchers for Core Fulbright U.S. Scholar grants in each proposed country.
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 referring to private schools), including Westwood International, Maru-a-Pula, Northside, Thornhill, Broadhurst Primary School, Rainbow International School, Al-Nur International School, Gaborone International School, Regent Hill 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.
All scholars in the country are expected to report prior and upon arrival, and keep regular contact with the U.S. Embassy and report on their activities. The Embassy may collaborate with the scholars and their hosts on specific project, as needed.
Fulbright alumni are welcome to apply as long as they are not returning to the same institutions they worked with before.
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 a 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.
Cameroon is a lively Central African nation that is renowned for its geographical, religious, ethnic, and cultural diversity. Affectionately known as “Africa in Miniature,” Cameroon includes all the continent's major geographic landscapes including white beaches in the south, mountains in the west, tropical rainforests in the Congo basin, savannah grasslands further north and sparse deserts in the far north. The Cameroonian population, which the U.S. government estimates at 28.5 million (midyear 2021), is made up of an estimated 240 different ethnic groups with 240 corresponding local languages which you can hear spoken throughout the public sphere. Each of Cameroon's ethnic groups has its own unique cultural forms including music, style of dress, and traditional dishes, which have become increasingly intermixed over the years.
Cameroon is divided into 10 regions: Center, Littoral, South, West, Northwest, Southwest, Adamawa, North, Far North and East. Urbanization is evidenced by bustling markets and industries in the capital city of each region, with inhabitants of Douala and Yaounde comprising over twenty percent of the national population.
English and French are the official languages of the country, and Cameroon has an official bilingualism policy that mandates the use of both languages in public offices. However, French speakers outnumber English speakers by a 4:1 ratio. Two of the country’s regions are predominantly English speaking, and eight regions are French speaking. As a result, working knowledge of French is recommended.
The Fulbright Program was established in Cameroon in 1962. Since its inception, over 70 Fulbright U.S. Scholars have been sent to Cameroon to teach and conduct research in fields ranging from languages and anthropology to biomedicine and engineering. The work of these scholars has contributed to scientific, academic and social progress in Cameroon, and some scholars have even supported the development of academic structures such as the Center for Transformative Education at the University of Ngaoundere and the School of Engineering at the Catholic University of Cameroon-Bamenda.
Cameroon has 11 public universities and more than twice as many private institutions of higher education. 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.
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.
- Martin Azese, 2022 Scholar - https://www.otterbein.edu/news/otterbein-engineering-professor-receives-fulbright-fellowship-award/
- Michael Takafor Ndemanu, 2021 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 Kingdom of Eswatini previously known as Kingdom of Swaziland, is a landlocked country on the eastern flank of South Africa, where it adjoins Mozambique. It extends about 110 miles (175 km) from north to south and about 80 miles (130 km) from west to east at its largest dimensions.
The country has an approximate population of 1.2 million and is predominantly rural. The country has two official languages: Siswati and English. Most Emaswati will be able to communicate in the English language and daily operations in businesses, official offices and institutions can be understood and conducted in English.
The Kingdom of Eswatini is one of the world's last remaining absolute monarchies and is ruled by King Mswati III. Autonomy for the Swazis of southern Africa was guaranteed by the British in the late 19th century; independence was granted in 1968. In June 2021, Eswatini experienced unprecedented civil unrest that revealed political tensions and an underlying frustration amongst the general populace—particularly the youth. The political environment is charged with tensions from dissatisfied citizens and young people are particularly affected by this. The high levels of unemployment amongst youth (both educated and uneducated) combined with the disruptions of classes in many tertiary institutions due to student strikes have left young people in the country despondent. The political terrain has shifted in the country and it presents new opportunities for engagement, as well as challenges.
Eswatini ranks as a lower-middle income country, but the World Bank estimates that 58.9% of the population lives below the national poverty line. The U.S. Government supports: health promotion and health systems; strengthening accountable governance; rule of law; economic inclusion and empowerment; entrepreneurship; youth development and education; security sector capacity-building; and trade promotion in Eswatini.
There are four major Institutes of Higher Education in Eswatini. These are the University of Eswatini (UNESWA), the Swaziland College of Technology (SCOT), Limkokwing University of Creative Technology and the South African Nazarene University (SANU). Limkokwing and SCOT only offer Associate’s degrees or Diplomas. UNESWA is the only one that provides postgraduate education.
The US Mission in Eswatini provides overall oversight of the Fulbright program in the country. We offer airport pick-up on initial arrival and set up a security briefing for all scholars with the Regional Security Officer at the U.S. Embassy.
Housing – It is recommended that grantees contact their host institutions for best possible local housing options—embassy personnel are available to assist as needed and recommendations on safe locations can be requested from our security colleagues.
Health care – The Embassy Nurse can provide guidance on local medical practitioners and health institutions as well as provide Fulbright grantees with information on health specialists, clinics and hospitals in South Africa. Four good clinics are available, in Mbabane (Mbabane Clinic), Ezulwini (MediSun Clinic and Ezulwini Private Hospital) and Manzini (Manzini Clinic) which provide adequate health care for routine illnesses and minor emergencies.
Education – Although the university and some teacher’s colleges follow the American academic year schedule, primary and secondary schools follow the southern hemisphere schedule. There are three excellent primary schools: Sifundzani Primary School, UFS International Academy, usutuschool.ac.sz; and Montessori Life Primary, montessorilifeprimary.com. For high school‑age students, Waterford KaMhlaba, United World College of Southern Africa is another excellent option.
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 quality 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.
Life for Fulbrighters in The Gambia offers a unique and enriching experience. The country has undergone a significant transformation from autocracy to democracy, and this transition has positioned The Gambia as a beacon of democracy in West Africa.
The partnership between The Gambia and the United States has flourished, with the United States providing substantial support through initiatives such as the Millennium Challenge compact and various grants focused on health, agriculture, and education. In addition to these sectors, technology and tourism are also emerging as promising areas of growth.
The historical ties between the United States and The Gambia further contribute to the Fulbright experience. Kunta Kinteh, the protagonist of the iconic American saga Roots, hailed from The Gambia, and a significant number of Gambians and their descendants now reside in the United States. Many members of the diaspora return to The Gambia to reconnect with their roots and heritage.
The University of The Gambia serves as the country's primary university, and the School of Business and Public Administration is one of the largest schools on campus. Fulbright scholars can engage with the vibrant academic community and contribute to the intellectual and educational development of the country.
The U.S. Embassy in Banjul provides valuable support to Fulbrighters, offering guidance on visa processes, housing arrangements, and security considerations. For scholars with dependent children in grades K-8, there are several local schools available to ensure a smooth transition and continuity of education.
Overall, Fulbrighters in The Gambia can expect a dynamic and rewarding experience, with opportunities to contribute to the country's ongoing development and immerse themselves in its rich culture and history.
Ghana has many educational and cultural sites throughout the country and 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 transportation apps like Uber, Bolt and Yango are often utilized in major cities. There are also car rental or travel companies that can provide a driver with the vehicle, which is great for local trips or hosting visiting guests.
If bringing school-aged children to Ghana, 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 with the 2021 military coup d’état. 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, and the 2021 coup, which strained Guinea's social and political fabric, 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 especially 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 email@example.com.
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
General Country Background
Senegal, officially the Republic of Senegal, is a country in West Africa, on the Atlantic Ocean coastline. Senegal is bordered by Mauritania to the north, Mali to the east, Guinea to the southeast and Guinea-Bissau to the southwest. Senegal nearly surrounds the Gambia, a country occupying a narrow sliver of land along the banks of the Gambia River, which separates Senegal's southern region of Casamance from the rest of the country. Senegal also shares a maritime border with Cape Verde. Senegal's economic and political capital is Dakar.
Senegal is notably the westernmost country in the mainland of Africa. It owes its name to the Senegal River, which borders it to the east and north. The climate is typically Sahelian, though there is a rainy season. Senegal covers a land area of almost 197,000 square kilometers (76,000 sq mi) and has a population of around 17 million. The state is a unitary presidential republic; since the country's foundation in 1960, it has been recognized as one of the most stable countries on the African continent.
The state was formed as part of the independence of French West Africa from French colonial rule. Because of this history, French is the official language, but it is understood only by a minority of the population. Over 30 languages are spoken in Senegal, and Wolof is the most widely spoken one, with 80% of the population speaking it as a first or second language, acting as Senegal's lingua franca alongside French. Like other post-colonial African states, the country includes a wide mix of ethnic and linguistic communities, with the largest being the Wolof, Fula, and Serer people. Senegalese people are predominantly Muslim.
Senegal is classified as a heavily indebted poor country, with relatively low HDI ranked 170th in the Human Development index. Most of the population is on the coast and works in agriculture or other food industries; other major industries include mining, tourism, and services. The country does not have notable natural resources, but the basis of its development lies in education, where almost half the state's budget is spent. Senegal is a member state of the African Union, the United Nations, the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS), Organisation internationale de la Francophonie, and the Community of Sahel-Saharan States. Internationally, Senegal is best known in the sporting world for the Paris-Dakar Rally.
Senegal is a politically stable country with a history of peaceful transition to power. The bilateral relationship between the United States and Senegal is strong and Senegalese have an overall positive opinion of the United States.
While terrorism and violent extremism have not affected Senegal to the same degree as in neighboring countries, Senegal is focused on preventing violent extremism and terrorism from spreading.
Senegal has also prioritized increasing economic growth. The government’s Plan Senegal Emergent aims to sustain an economic growth of at least 6% and population growth of no more than 3%. There is a need for increased private sector led growth and investment.
A large youth population combined with a failing education system (universities are often closed due to strikes) and a limited job market present a major challenge.
The health sector is improving but improvements are needed to better prevent, detect, and respond to infectious diseases as well as to improve overall healthcare.
For decades Senegal has been the lead in the field of Education, especially higher education, among its African counterparts. Every citizen is given the privilege to attend school to learn, read and write. Senegal possesses 7 public universities, and multiple private universities. There are about 806 foreign students in Senegal. 28.4% of Senegal’s youth population attend a university, while 20% of the population has at least a university degree, or certificate from the tertiary institutions.
However, the system has been facing many challenges due to the increased number of students in public universities. This brought a lot of instability throughout the country’s higher education institutions. To overcome those challenges, the government created the Virtual University of Senegal (UVS) to allow each student to attend university in their home region, rather than moving to Dakar to attend the main university. Most recently, a new public university called Ahmadou Makhtar Mbow was inaugurated and will focus on teaching sciences, technology, and engineering. The government of Senegal has a goal of opening four other new universities in the coming years.
- Advancing democratic values
- Advancing peace and security
- Promoting opportunity and development (increased inclusive economic growth, improved health status, improved education, training, and leadership)
- Increasing U.S. trade and investment
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.
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: OgangaJM@state.gov.
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-up 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 Frank and AirBnB.
Most school-aged U.S. Mission or expatriate 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), and 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 their ASPE benefits closely prior to arrival. 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.
Paul Robinson; William Kisaalita; Priscilla Ocen; Eileen Haase; Thomas Graham; Samson Jarso; Ladavia Just.
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 14 public and seven private universities with a total enrolment of close to 120,000 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.
Visit our Scholar Directory to view and search all Fulbright alumni. You can also learn more about Fulbright Alumni Ambassadors.