Foreign Cultures Scholarships

The scholarships listed under the heading of foreign cultures represent a range of funding opportunities for those that want to pursue ethnic and gender studies at the undergraduate and graduate levels. If you want to study indigenous peoples or if your interests lie in the arenas of sexuality, inequality, racism or class issues, then this might be the major for you. Continue reading below to find out more about this exciting field and also the foreign cultures scholarships that are available.

As a college major ethnic and gender studies is about understanding the connections between cultures and peoples as much as it is about celebrating the singularity and achievements of people, races and nations. These interdisciplinary majors feature coursework from across a range of academic fields, including history, language arts, comparative religion, anthropology, political science and art history. A sampling of the some of the more popular concentrations within this major would include:

African-American studies – Here you'll study the history of North American peoples of African descent. You'll learn how to take highly charged historical and cultural issues and place them in a socio-political framework so as to better understand and interpret them.

Asian studies – In this major you'll receive a comprehensive exposure to Asian language and culture. Most programs focus on a specific geographical area (Japan, Southeast Asia, Tibet). Other programs design their studies to function as a comparative exploration of the entire region.  

European studies – With this broad field of study you'll examine the people, cultures, history and societies of European civilization. Concentrations that are generally available include international relations, regional studies and the study of historical periods, like the Renaissance.

Women's studies – Majors in this field look at the role of women in all areas of life. This wide ranging field can also be found under the name of gender and sexuality studies or feminist studies. Women's studies programs are offered in a variety of formats with a host of concentrations so be certain to research your program carefully.

The degree programs listed above represent a very small amount of the overall offerings to be found at the college level. These areas of study can lead to a number of interesting career paths. Some students in ethnic and gender studies decide to continue their research at the graduate level. Others go in to vocational areas such as teaching, social services, business and health services.

To continue exploring available foreign culture scholarships click on the links below. 

The Michael I. Sovern/Columbia University Affiliated Fellowship

This fellowship, awarded by the Provost of Columbia University, was established by the Trustees of the American Academy in Rome and Friends of Columbia University in honor of Michael Sovern's chairmanship of the Academy board from 1993 to 2005. It enables a member of the Columbia community to spend six weeks in residence at the Academy.

American Society for 18th Century Studies Flwps

For research on projects related to the American eighteenth century. The award is jointly funded by the American Society for Eighteenth-Century Studies and AAS. ASECS membership is not required of applicants; awardees who are not already members must join. This fellowship supports research on projects related to the American eighteenth century. Criteria Fellows are selected on the basis of the applicant's scholarly qualifications, the scholarly significance or importance of the project, and the appropriateness of the proposed study to the Society's collections. Stipend: $1,850 per month or $1,350 per month including housing in the Society's Fellows' Residence Length of Term One to two months Eligibility: Doctoral candidates may apply Application: To apply, complete an application form online. You will also need to attach the following materials to your application form: Current CV Description of your proposed research project (no longer than two double-spaced pages) One-page bibliography of relevant secondary literature List of other sources of funding for the project Two letters of recommendation are also required. Please ask your referees to speak to the research proposal at hand--if possible, please do not use general placement dossier letters. Letters should be submitted electronically to Cheryl McRell, Program Administrator at AAS, at

Stephen Botein Fellowships

AAS Short-Term Fellowships provide support for one-to three months' residence in the Society 's library at stipends of $1,850 per month. Taken as a whole, AAS Short-Term Fellowships are open to individuals, including foreign nationals and persons at work on doctoral dissertations who are engaged in scholarly research and writing in any field of American history and culture through 1876. These fellowships are for research in the history of the book in American culture. Funding is derived from an endowment established by the family and friends of the late Mr. Botein. Doctoral candidates may apply. Criteria: Fellows are selected on the basis of the applicant's scholarly qualifications, the scholarly significance or importance of the project, and the appropriateness of the proposed study to the Society's collections.

Kate B. & Hall J. Peterson Fellowships

AAS Short-Term Fellowships provide support for one-to three months' residence in the Society's library at stipends of $1850 per month. Taken as a whole, AAS Short-Term Fellowships are open to individuals, including foreign nationals and persons at work on doctoral dissertations who are engaged in scholarly research and writing in any field of American history and culture through 1876. These fellowships are for research on any topic supported by the collections. Stipends derive from the income on an endowment provided by the late Hall J. Peterson and his wife, Kate B. Peterson. This fellowship is awarded to individuals engaged in scholarly research and writing - - including doctoral dissertations - - in any field of American history and culture through 1876. Criteria Fellows are selected on the basis of the applicant's scholarly qualifications, the scholarly significance or importance of the project, and the appropriateness of the proposed study to the Society's collections.

Dissertation Fellowships in East European Studies

The American Council of Learned Societies offers support for writing dissertations in East European studies in all disciplines of the humanities and the social sciences.Funding is offered for two types of support: * Research Fellowships for use in Eastern Europe to conduct fieldwork or archival investigations. * Writing Fellowships for use outside of Eastern Europe, after all research is complete, to write the dissertation.Applications should be for work on Eastern Europe: Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Croatia, Czech Republic, Estonia, Hungary, Kosovo/a, Latvia, Lithuania, Macedonia, Montenegro, Poland, Romania, Serbia, Slovakia, and Slovenia. Applicants may propose comparative work considering more than one country of Eastern Europe or relating East European societies of those of other parts of the world.Fellowships will be granted on the basis of the scholarly potential of the applicant, the quality and scholarly importance of the proposed work, and its importance to the development of scholarship on Eastern Europe. ACLS selection committees consider language competence essential to research. Therefore, applicants will be asked to describe their command of the language(s) required for their proposed projects.The stipend will be up to $18,000. As a condition of the award, the applicant's home university will be required (consistent with its policies and regulations) to provide or to waive normal academic year tuition payments or to provide alternative cost-sharing support.Title VIII/ACLS awards support scholars at key points early in career: acquisition of an East European language as a basic research tool, dissertation research, dissertation writing, postdoctoral work before tenure to turn the dissertation into a book or to embark on the first serious research project after the dissertation, travel to conferences to present results of research in progress, and organization of planning workshops and formal conferences. Applicants are encouraged to consider applying for these funding opportunities in sequence. Accordingly, the record of success in completing work under terms of one Title VIII/ACLS grant or fellowship should be mentioned in the essay of any subsequent application.Specification of Research or Writing FellowshipsApplicants must apply for one of these two categories of support and in the application essay clearly state how much work on the dissertation has already been accomplished and in what specific ways progress would be advanced by an ACLS award. The selection committee will consider the intrinsic intellectual merit of the project, the workplan proposed, and evidence of progress made toward completion.Applications for research fellowships should state the questions or hypotheses driving research, the methods to be used for gathering relevant evidence, and preliminary versions of the dissertation’s main argument.Applications for writing fellowships should state what materials have been collected, how research questions may have been answered or modified, and the direction that analysis will take once writing has begun. ACLS selection committees understand the problem posed by timing – often, applications for writing are written in the midst of fieldwork or archival research, which means that all relevant materials have not yet been collected and the dissertation’s argument may be still inchoate. Applicants should address this problem directly in the application essay, describing as accurately as possible what they have managed to accomplish as of the application deadline and how they envision the dissertation taking shape during the period of the writing fellowship.An individual may apply to all fellowship and grant programs for which he or she is eligible, such as the Mellon/ACLS Dissertation Completion Fellowship. However, not more than one ACLS or ACLS-joint award may normally be accepted in any one competition year.Eligibility: Applicants * Applicants must be U.S. citizens. * Applicants must have completed all requirements for the Ph.D. except the dissertation (ABD) by June. * Applicants may apply for one-year research and writing fellowships in sequence, but may not apply for a second year of funding in either category.

Fellowship in Roman Studies

Applicants must be American citizens affiliated with a North American institution of higher learning and must demonstrate academic competence and submit a detailed proposal for their work. There is no minimum age or degree requirement, but it is expected that the work proposed will lead to publication and teaching. The work undertaken may or may not be in pursuit of a higher degree, but preference will be given to those seeking advanced degrees.

Doctoral Dissertation Fellowship in Jewish Studies

Applicants for Doctoral Dissertation Fellowships must be citizens or permanent residents of the United States and must have completed all academic requirements for the doctoral degree except the dissertation. Applicants should demonstrate course work in Jewish Studies on the graduate level and must give evidence of proficiency in a Jewish language adequate for pursuing an academic career in their chosen field. Preference is given to individuals preparing for academic careers in Jewish Studies, although occasional grants are awarded to students in other fields of the humanities or social sciences who demonstrate a career commitment to Jewish scholarship. The amount of the grants is between $7 - $10,000. Fellowships are granted for one academic year and are normally given for the final stages of completing the dissertation.

NIAF Scholarships

The National Italian American Foundation has a $1,000,000 education budget. They will award scholarships to outstanding students in the spring for use during the following academic year. The awards will be made on the basis of academic merit and divided between two groups of students. Category I: Italian American students who have outstanding potential and high academic achievements. Area of study: open. Category II: Those students form any ethnic background majoring or minoring in Italian language, Italian studies, Italian American studies or a related field who have outstanding potential, and high academic achievements. To be considered for a NIAF scholarship, a student must meet the following criteria: * Be enrolled in an accredited institution of higher education for the upcoming fall semester; * Have a grade point average of at least 3.25 (or the equivalent); * Be a United States citizen or a permanent resident alien; * Fit into one of the two scholarship categories; * For the purposes of the NIAF Scholarship Program, to be Italian American the student must have at least one person in his/her ancestry who has immigrated form Italy. ** No immediate family members of the NIAF Board of Directors, Regional Vice-Presidents, Area Coordinators, or Staff are eligible for NIAF Scholarships.

Association of Jewish Libraries Scholarship

This scholarship will be awarded to a student attending or planning to attend a graduate school of library and information science. Prospective candidates should have an interest in, and demonstrate a potential for, pursuing a career in Judaica librarianship. Eligible students must be accepted in an ALA accredited library school for the upcoming academic year.

Congressional Research Grants

The competition is open to individuals with a serious interest in studying Congress. Political scientists, historians, biographers, scholars of public administration or American studies, and journalists are among those eligible. The Center encourages graduate students who have successfully defended their dissertation prospectus to apply and awards a significant portion of the funds for dissertation research. Applicants must be U.S. citizens who reside in the United States. The grants program does not fund undergraduate or pre-Ph.D. study. Organizations are not eligible. Research teams of two or more individuals are eligible. No institutional overhead or indirect costs may be claimed against a Congressional Research Grant. What kind of research projects are eligible for consideration? The Center’s first interest is to fund the study of the leadership in the Congress, both House and Senate. Topics could include external factors shaping the exercise of congressional leadership, institutional conditions affecting it, resources and techniques used by leaders, or the prospects for change or continuity in the patterns of leadership. In addition, The Center invites proposals about congressional procedures, such as committee operation or mechanisms for institutional change, and Congress and the electoral process. The Center also encourages proposals that link Congress and congressional leadership with the creation, implementation, and oversight of public policy. Proposals must demonstrate that Congress, not the specific policy, is the central research interest. See website for more information.

Mellon Post-Doctoral Research Fellowship

One or more fellowships will be awarded for an academic year (nine or ten months) in residence at the Society's library. Scholars who are no more than three years beyond receipt of the doctorate are eligible to apply. The purpose of the fellowships is to provide the recipient with time and resources to extend research and/or to revise the dissertation for publication. Any topic relevant to the Society's library collections and programmatic scope - that is, American history and culture through 1876 - is eligible. Applicants may come from such fields as history, music history, and other relating to America in the period of the Society's coverage. The fellow is obliged to give first refusal on the resulting manuscript to a new book series published jointly by Cambridge University Press and AAS.

Mary Isabel Sibley Fellowship

Candidates must be unmarried women between 25 and 35 years of age who have demonstrated their ability to carry on original research. They must hold the doctorate or have fulfilled all the requirements for the doctorate except the dissertation, and they must be planning to devote full-time work to research during the fellowship year that begins September 1. Eligibility is not restricted to members of Phi Beta Kappa. For the study of Greek language, literature, history, or archaeology.

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