Many Texas State students are not aware of the exceptional opportunities for post‐graduate fellowships and scholarships in the United Kingdom and other foreign countries. If you have a GPA of 3.5+, you should consider applying for prestigious fellowships and scholarships; these are highly competitive opportunities that support one, two, or three years of research and study in some of the most prestigious and internationally recognized institutions. Many of these opportunities are for study at top-level internationally recognized institutions such as Oxford and Cambridge universities in the United Kingdom. They often offer generous funding support to successful candidates.
Although the application process is similar to applying for graduate study at American schools, the foundations that provide the funding for prestigious awards seek the highest quality applicants with excellent academic, service, and leadership credentials. Consequently, applying for these highly competitive awards requires planning that should begin long before the actual applications are due.
The guidance provided here will help you get started. First, take a look at some of the websites for these fellowships and also look at websites for the schools where you would like to study. Links to Fellowships and Scholarships (located below) will take you to information on several of the major fellowships and scholarships.
Then take a look at the other links, located in the sidebar and in this webpage. When you’re ready to talk with someone about the application process, the Honors program is ready to help at firstname.lastname@example.org
Fellowships vs. Scholarships
*The terms “fellowship” and “scholarship” are often used interchangeably. According to the the Internal Revenue Service, a fellowship is to benefit “an individual to aid in the pursuit of study or research” and a scholarship is to benefit “a student at an educational institution to aid in the pursuit of studies”. Thus “fellowship” is a broader term that includes both study and research, while “scholarship” is a narrower term that requires enrollment in a degree program at an educational institution and covers only study. To avoid repetitious wording, we use “fellowship” when referring to broader categories that include both study and research. If study in a degree program is the objective, substitute “scholarship” for “fellowship” as you read our descriptions.
Your application will be compared to hundreds of others. It will likely be read by several groups of people during the selection process. To ensure that you are conveying the impressions you intend, get critiques from a variety of people as you assemble your application package. A strong and outstanding application will be unique, impressive, and appealing to broad range of people.
In addition to outstanding academic performance, you will need to develop strong evidence of independent intellectual and creative work including research; the Honors thesis and the SURF independent research program are examples of such work. You will also need to show consistent and outstanding involvement in service activities and leadership roles; the many service organizations at Texas State and the annual Common Experience program offer opportunities to engage in both leadership and service activities. Plan ahead in completing your program of study; foreign institutions might required a foreign language proficiency beyond university requirements.
Strong, detailed letters of recommendation from faculty members are essential for success in this process. For information on how to request a recommendation letter, please check here.
Please review the documents below, which will help you in the application and preparation processes for postgraduate fellowships and scholarships.
Every opportunity has its own application format; most require online submission. Selection committees generally require:
- a transcript and extracurricular activities record (resume)
- two or more letters of recommendation
- a personal essay
- a project proposal or plan of study
- an interview (for initially selected applicants)
The components of the application should complement each other without unnecessary repetition. The application should fit together to provide a convincing and unique picture of your strengths, interests, and achievements.
The actual application process should begin not later than the end of the Junior year, as many applications are due in late August and September, at the beginning of the Senior (graduation) year. The process is similar for most competitions: after defining an area of study, you select a program at one or more appropriate institutions; you then prepare your application (including a study proposal, essay(s), recommendations, budgets, and endorsements), and submit the application by the announced deadline. Selected applicants are then invited for an interview, after which awards are announced, usually in November or early December.
Advice and Guidance
Many people at Texas State are available to help you put together an effective application package:
- The Honors College Staff can offer application strategy tips, mock interviews, mentoring, and guidance throughout the application process.
- The Honors Fellowship and Scholarship Adviser advises and mentors Texas State students who intend to prepare for these applications, beginning as early as the end of the Freshman year. Enrollment in the Honors Program is not required.
- Faculty members can do more than write letters of recommendation. They can help you develop your career interest and give you advice on which graduate programs and fellowships to target. Ask your faculty to review your application materials and to critique your fellowship essays.
- Instructors in your major and minor programs of study at Texas State can help you refine your proposed plans of study, and can assist you in selecting institutions.
- For help with writing skills as you prepare your essays, letters, and other written materials, consult the Texas State Writing Center.
- Use the Alkek Library and the internet to research institutions, programs, and foundations that fund fellowships and scholarships. As you begin the application process, check the websites for the institutions and programs to which you are applying.
Links to Information:
You can find information on several prestigious fellowship programs using the list of links below. Your initial search for international fellowships should start with a general internet search for fellowship programs that are specific to your area of interest. Initially, check out at the top competitive fellowships, such as the Rhodes, Marshall, Mitchell, Gates, and Rotary; look over the application information on their websites. As you research fellowships, you can also determine institutions appropriate to specific fellowships (such as the Rhodes for Oxford University and the Gates for Cambridge University). A well‐prepared application takes considerable time and effort in research and writing. As most applications are similar, you should apply for at least two or three opportunities. A frequent combination is: Rhodes/Gates/Marshall/Mitchell.
|British Council (Study in UK)||http://www.educationuk.org/USA/Article/Scholarships‐for‐international‐postgraduate‐students|
|Rotary Ambassadorial Scholarship||http://www.rotary.org/en/StudentsAndYouth/EducationalPrograms/AmbassadorialScholarships/Pages/ridefault.aspx|
|Royal Society Fellowship (Research Grants)||http://royalsociety.org/grants/schemes/#early‐career|