The Fulbright Program for Citizens of the Russian Federation

Overview

Launched in 1946, the Fulbright Program establishes and maintains educational, academic, and scientific exchange between the United States of America. Today, the Fulbright Program is active in 160 countries.

On April 11, 1972, the "Agreement between the government of the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics and the Government of the United States of America on cooperation in science, technology, education, culture and other fields" was signed. Under this agreement, in 1973, six Soviet and six American scientists became participants in the first exchange program between the US and the USSR.  The twelve scientists received grants from the Fulbright Program to conduct research and give lectures, thus laying a solid foundation for both bilateral academic cooperation and an increase in mutual understanding between the two Cold War adversaries.

For almost 50 years of continuous work, the Fulbright Program has provided more than 2,400 Russian professors, teachers, and young professionals with the opportunity to establish new scientific contacts, continue academic studies, and undertake internships.

The next Fulbright competition (for 2025-26 academic year) will be announced in mid-March 2024. Fulbright Program will announce an open competition for Russian Citizens for study, internships, conducting research, delivering lectures, and master classes in the United States for university graduates, post-graduate students, university teachers, scholars, scientists and researchers, engineers and other professionals, artists and representatives of creative disciplines.

Fulbright Award benefits may vary, depending on the program. Benefits include:

  • Full tuition for students at a university or college in the U.S.
  • Monthly stipend
  • Accident insurance & Sickness and Health Benefits.
  • Round-trip transportation to the U.S.

Please, see below more detailed information about the portfolio of Fulbright Programs which are open for Russian citizens.

Fulbright Visiting Graduate Student Program (VGS)

The Fulbright Visiting Graduate Student Program is open to Russian university graduates and to graduate (kandidatskaya) students in the Arts, Engineering, Natural Sciences, Humanities, and Social Sciences. This program supports study for a master's degree program at a U.S. university for up to three academic years. It also supports research at U.S. universities and archives for one academic year to assist in completion of a kandidatskaya degree in Russia.

There are two types of scholarships offered within this program:

  1. “Master’s” – for university graduates to study in the USA, duration of the program is 1-3 academic years.
  2. “Visiting Student Researcher” – for post-graduate students working on their kandidatskaya degree; this is a non-degree program; duration of the program is 1 academic year.

Eligibility requirements

  • VGS program applicants must be Russian citizens and permanent residents in the territory of the Russian Federation. Permanent residence in this case means staying within the borders of Russia for at least 6 months (180 days) in total, in the period from May 15 of last year to May 15 of this year.
  • Master’s program: Applicants must at least have a higher education diploma - Bachelor (or Specialist) degree. University graduates of the current year may also participate in the competition if they provide an appropriate certificate (SPRAVKA), confirming their status as a student, and graduation in 2023. Those who already have master’s degree or are currently enrolled in a master’s program may also take part in the competition.
  • Visiting Student Researcher program participants must be enrolled in post-graduate program (ASPIRANTURA) in Russian Federation, and provide a document, confirming this status. Also, SOISKATELY of kandidatskaya degree may participate in the competition. The “SOISKATEL” status must be confirmed officially by the host organization (university or research institute).
  • Fluency in English is mandatory and should be demonstrated by a score of no less than 80 on TOEFL iBT and TOEFL iBT Special Home Edition, a 6,5overall score on IELTS Academic and IELTS Online. TOEFL score 100 is required for the following disciplines: Architecture, Economics, Communications, Computer/Information Science, International Relations, Journalism, Languages, Literature, Linguistics, Political Science, Public Administration, Public Health, Social Work, Sociology, TEFL.
  • Applicants must possess a strong academic background. Applicants need not take TOEFL in advance. The competition finalists will take TOEFL at the program’s expense in October.
  • Fulbright program participants enter the United States on an Exchange Visitor (J-1) visa and are subject to the two-year home-country residence requirement associated with the J-1 visa. For those candidates who have already traveled to the US on a J-1 visa, there should be a minimum of two years at the time of application since your return to Russia.

Annual application deadline is May 15.

Foreign Languages Teaching Assistant (FLTA)

The Fulbright FLTA Program is a nine-month, ECA-funded, non-degree program. It provides early-career English teachers an opportunity to refine their teaching skills, increase their English language proficiency and extend their knowledge of the society and culture of the United States, while teaching their native language to U.S. students and strengthening foreign language instruction at U.S. colleges and universities.

FLTA participants may assist in or teach up to twenty hours of language classes a week and are required to enroll in at least two courses per semester, one of which must be in U.S. Studies. The remaining coursework should relate to their careers in English language teaching. FLTA participants will also be expected to facilitate cultural events, language clubs, and language tables.

FLTA participants will be required to attend a U.S.-based orientation during the summer of 2024 before arriving at their host institutions in August, and a mid-year enrichment conference in the United States to share and discuss foreign language teaching best practices and their current teaching experiences with other FLTA participants.

The Fulbright FLTA Program does not support dependents or family members. Candidates may not have any dependents accompany them for any time during the program. Family and friends may visit program participants during holiday periods. FLTA participants are required to return to their home countries upon completion of the nine-month program.

All Fulbright FLTA participants receive a monthly stipend, accident and sickness health benefit coverage, and travel support.  U.S. host institutions provide tuition waivers to support the required coursework.

Eligibility

  • Applicants must be Russian citizens and must reside in Russia throughout the nomination and selection process. U.S. citizens and dual U.S.-Russian citizens as well as those who applied for permanent residency or diversity visa lottery are not eligible for the program participation.
  • Applicants must be teachers of English or in training to become teachers of English, and at minimum possess the equivalent of a U.S. Bachelor’s degree by June 2024; Master’s degrees are highly desirable at many institutions.
  • Fluency in English is mandatory, demonstrated by a score of no less than 79-80 (TOEFL iBT) or 6.0 (IELTS).
  • Applicants must demonstrate maturity, dependability, integrity, and professionalism. Material misrepresentation (e.g., plagiarism) at any time during the application or grant period is grounds for selection withdrawal or grant termination, as well as ineligibility for future participation.
  • Due to the structure of the Fulbright FLTA Program, FLTA applicants should be capable of succeeding in the dual role of teaching assistant and student; they must be open to living with their U.S. student peers in undergraduate or graduate level campus housing and also engaging with faculty and staff with maturity and professionalism.

Preferred Qualifications

FLTA participants should approach teaching with enthusiasm. They should be sincerely interested in teaching Russian and Russian culture to American students, show knowledge of Russian culture and awareness of current events in Russia, and possess leadership qualities, the ability to guide their students and interact well with students. FLTA participants should be full of desire to meet people and become a part of the community. They should be able to work creatively, be self-reliant but good team players who maintain excellent relationships with faculty, staff, and students.

They should also be flexible with placements at smaller or more ethnically diverse academic institutions as well as larger urban institutions. Candidates should also have excellent organizational and computer skills. Interests in playing sports, music, dance, theatre, literature, poetry, and culinary skills are also encouraged and welcomed. The greatest character traits the candidate should demonstrate are flexibility and readiness to gain new knowledge and share it.

Annual application deadline is June 1.

Fulbright Visiting Scholar Program (VS)

The Fulbright Visiting Scholar program holds an open competition for scholars in the Humanities, Social Sciences, Exact and Natural sciences, and for artists and designers. The main goal of the Program is to strengthen cultural and academic ties between the peoples of the United States and Russia, to improve mutual understanding between our countries. The program is fully funded by the US Government.

The finalists of the competition receive a scholarship to implement their proposal in the USA under one of the two categories:

  • Conducting research
  • Lecturing / hosting master classes (in creative disciplines)

Project duration:

  • Research – from 3 to 6 months
  • Lecturing and master classes - from 3 to 9 months

Scholarships are awarded on a competitive basis to:

  • Academicians, faculty, scientists and professionals at research institutes and centers (academic degree such as Candidate or Doctorate is mandatory)
  • Artists and professionals in the field of applied and creative disciplines, as well as Library / Museum / Archives professionals (academic degree such as Candidate or Doctorate is not mandatory).

The Fulbright Program provides Russian participants with multifaceted support, monthly stipend being its key component intended to pay for housing and all living expenses. In addition, the scholarship includes purchasing of health insurance, as well as full coverage of travel expenses to and from the host university. The participant of the Program will be placed in a university, archive, or research center in the USA that is considered most suitable for the implementation of the project.

Participants of the Fulbright Visiting Scholar program are allowed to take on grant their dependents, such as spouses and children under the age of 21, who have no family of their own.

Eligibility

  • Applicants must be Russian citizens and must reside in Russia throughout the nomination and selection process. Please note that U.S. citizens and dual U.S.-Russian citizens as well as those who applied for permanent residency or diversity visa lottery are not eligible for the program participation.
  • Applicants must have an academic degree of Candidate or Doctorate/PhD, with the exception of professionals in the fields of Arts and in Applied disciplines such as Architecture, Urban Planning, Library / Archives / Museum Management, Choreography, Music, Theatre, Cinema Studies, Creative Writing, and Communications Theory. For those categories academic degree is not a mandatory requirement, however, they must exhibit a strong professional background, have at least 5 years of experience in their chosen field and a publication record or portfolio.
  • Applicants must demonstrate sufficient English language skills, which will be evaluated during the face-to-face interviews.
  • Fulbright grantees enter the United States on an Exchange Visitor (J-1) visa and are subject to the two-year home-country residence requirement associated with the J-1 visa. For those candidates who have already traveled to the US on a J-1 visa, there should be a minimum of two years at the time of application since return to Russia.
  • There is no age limit for applicants of the Visiting Scholar program.

Annual application deadline is July 15.

Fulbright Faculty Development Program (FFDP)

The Fulbright Faculty Development Program (FFDP) is designed for teaching faculty who must be teaching at institutions of higher education in Russia. Applicants should have a minimum of 3 years of full-time teaching experience at an institution of higher education (not including practicum teaching required for initial degree of higher education), must intend to return to their home institution upon completion of the Program, reengage in teaching activities, and implement the knowledge and experience gained on this program.

The goal of the Fulbright Faculty Development Program (FFDP) is to introduce participants to best practices and theoretical approaches to curriculum development in the US and provide them with concrete strategies on how to develop a curriculum for a course, including an overview of academic and research resources. During the program, FFDP fellows will be expected to research and develop a course description and syllabus and outline specific teaching strategies for their proposed course. By the completion of the Program, participants will present their newly developed curriculum at the workshop planned to be held in the mid of January.

FFDP awards are available in all fields of study mentioned in the “List of Disciplines” section in the FFDP application guidelines.

The Fulbright Program provides Russian participants with multifaceted support, monthly stipend being its key component intended to pay for housing and all living expenses. In addition, the scholarship includes purchasing of health insurance, as well as full coverage of travel expenses to and from the host university.

The duration of the program in the US is 5 months.

Eligibility

  • Applicants must be Russian citizens and must reside in Russia throughout the nomination and selection process. Please note that U.S. citizens and dual U.S.-Russian citizens as well as those who applied for permanent residency or diversity visa lottery are not eligible for the program participation.
  • Applicants must have at least a higher education diploma / Bachelor degree.
  • Applicants must be actively lecturing or teaching and should have no less than 3 years of full-time teaching experience at the institution of higher education.
  • Program supports curriculum development only, not dissertation research.
  • Applicants must submit a clear proposal of the course for development, outlining its importance to their institution and plans for implementation upon return to Russia.
  • Fulbright grantees enter the United States on an Exchange Visitor (J-1) visa and are subject to the two-year home-country residence requirement associated with the J-1 visa. For those candidates who have already traveled to the US on a J-1 visa, there should be a minimum of two years at the time of application since your return to Russia.

Annual application deadline is June 15.

Fulbright Arctic Initiative

The Fulbright Arctic Initiative will create a network to stimulate international scientific collaboration on Arctic issues while increasing mutual understanding between the people of the United States and the people of other countries. Using a collaborative model to translate theory into practice, program participants will spend 18‐months engaged in addressing public‐policy research questions relevant to Arctic nations’ shared challenges. Program participants will focus their research on one of the following Fulbright Arctic Initiative themes:

  • Arctic Security and Cooperation
  • Arctic Infrastructure in a Changing Environment
  • Community Dimensions of Health

Eligibility

Successful candidates will include scholars at all career stages, to include applied researchers, professionals, and indigenous and traditional knowledge experts active in the academic, public or private sectors that demonstrate outstanding qualifications and a record of experience and accomplishment in an area clearly related to one of the designated research themes. Applicants must be actively engaged in an area of inquiry or activity relevant to the program's themes and objectives, be open to exploring and their investigations, and interested in developing collaborative activities with other Fulbright Arctic Scholars.

  • Applicants must be citizens of the country from which they are applying and residing in the country at the time of application. Non‐U.S. applicants who have dual‐U.S. citizenship or who hold permanent residency “green cards”, whether or not they reside in the U.S., are not eligible. Since specific residency requirements vary from country to country, applicants should contact their local Fulbright office directly to determine their eligibility.
  • A Ph.D. or equivalent professional/terminal degree is preferred, but not required.
  • Preference will be given to early or mid‐career academics, applied researchers and/or professionals with research experience in the public, non‐profit, or private sectors.
  • Applicants should have particular expertise and research experience in one of the identified thematic research areas.
  • Applicants must demonstrate proficiency in English. Language proficiency of candidates must be discussed in nomination submissions to IIE.

Award Provisions

  • Scholars will receive sufficient funding to support travel to all program meetings, travel and maintenance for the individual exchange visit, research materials and assistance for participants only.
  • Accommodations and meals for all group meetings will be covered separately. Awards will also include limited accident and sickness benefits.

All recommended Arctic Initiative candidates who are funded will be affiliated at sites appropriate for the proposed work. In some cases, applicants will correspond with colleagues at institutions or research centers and, in effect, arrange their own placements. Applicants are welcome to provide a letter of invitation from a potential host institution.

For more program information, please visit https://fulbrightscholars.org/arctic

Scholar-in-Residence (S-I-R)

The Fulbright Scholar-in-Residence (S-I-R) Program assists U.S. higher education institutions in expanding programs of academic exchange. The main purpose of the program is to bring scholars and professionals from 150 countries worldwide to U.S. campuses that serve student populations underrepresented in international exchange programs with little or no history of hosting Visiting Fulbright Scholars. Institutions that are given priority for the S-I-R program include: community colleges, regional universities, and minority-serving institutions.

Each fall U.S. institutions of higher education submit proposals to the Council for International Exchange of Scholars (CIES) under the global Fulbright Scholar-in-Residence (S-I-R) Program to bring scholars to campus for one or both semesters of the next academic year. U.S. institutions either name specific scholars that they want to invite or, through CIES, request that Fulbright Commissions or posts in partner countries recruit candidates.

It is but once every two to four years that the Fulbright Office in Russia is approached with a request to recruit for the Scholar-in-Residence Program. The number of grants awarded to Russian scholars and faculty, either named or recruited, is limited to one or two per year, but not necessarily each year. In light of the above,

The Fulbright Program in Russia does not conduct an open competition for this Program.

For more program information, please visit https://fulbrightscholars.org/sir

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