My Fulbright Timeline

The whole process usually extends over several years. It consists of different periods (application procedure, pre-travel arrangements, actual research, internships …). The timeline below presents months when certain steps of my Fulbright process occurred. The shaded months represent the time spent in the USA.

2008 APR Application preparation
MAY Deadline for application submission
JUN Fulbright interview
OCT Unofficial results
2009 JAN
APR Official results, notification from the US Embassy. Medical Examination
MAY Terms of appointment and special instructions
JUN Terms and conditions
JUL J-1 Visa application
AUG J-1 Approval and the Move to the USA
SEP J-1 travel signature, SSN, Bank Account, Health Insurance, Fulbright reception and other events
DEC Choose which dates are most suitable to attend Fulbright Enrichment Seminars. Provide the end of semester report for IIE
2010 JAN Received email declaring my acceptance to the New York Enrichment Seminar. Have to declare tax (Grantax)
MAR Enrichment seminar in NYC.
MAY Return to home country


  1. mohammad

    hello brother i live in palestine how i can apply ?
    i cant interact with the ambassador of US

    • PhDfriend

      A Palestinian friend of mine applied through Israel. When she was at the Enrichment Seminar, she would present her as a “Fulbright Scholar from the Occupied Territory of Palestine”. Anyhow, contact your US Embassy in Israel.

  2. Nokuthula

    Hai, my name is Nokuthula and I am a South African.I want to apply for the FB in October 2013 since the applications will be open for 2015-2016.But I am just afraid that maybe I am not smart enough for FB and probably wont make it.

  3. An Iraqi Student

    Dear PhDfriend,
    Please accept my best regards ..
    I have a little question ..
    -For how long it’s required to wait after interview ? I’m from Iraq

    • PhDfriend

      For me it was about 1 month after having submitted the application.

    • Amitav

      Our Iraqi friend asked about the period AFTER interview ? Didnt get the answer and I have the same question.

      • PhDfriend

        Hi. If you look at the timeline above, my interview was in June 2008 and I received unofficial hints about the result in October 2008. So the answer is: in my case, it was 4 months.

  4. Iqbal


    How they shortlist applicants for interview, and what types of questions are asked in interview.

    • PhDfriend

      Hi, I think they shortlist depending on the CV and application (personal statement, project proposal …) submitted. The questions are not preset, but you can get a feel of the interview by reading the ebook provided on this website.

  5. Halima

    please guide me, how much they rely on the GRE test scores for Phd? As I have got super low score. What are the chances for being shortlisted for interview if have stron proposal ?

    • PhDfriend

      Hi Halima, I am not really sure. I guess they view your whole application and if you can compensate your low GRE with some other outstanding achievements that make you fit for a Fulbright scholarship, you might be a contender. I’d try 🙂

  6. Artur

    Hi PhDfriend, I had my first Fulbright interview a little over 3 weeks ago. In my oountry only 3 people applied for the scholarship this year. I received an email yesterday saying that I was second principal candidate and they will let me know more when they hear. Do you have any idea what first/second principal candidate means, in terms of the selection process? Does it sound promising to you? Thanks, Artur

    • PhDfriend

      Hi Artur. Every country has a quota – how many scholarships there are available. If your country has 2, then you’re in. If they have 1, you might be in if #1 changes his mind. So the answer, unfortunately, is ‘it depends.’ Good luck!

  7. Sandra

    Thanks for this profound explanation!
    Since I am from the same region, I am curious to know more about waiting period between winter and final decision in April. Namely, this should be a phase of applying for preferred universities. Therefore, I wander does it mean that we are more or less accepted and that the last thing is to to wait for which specific university? It’s a bit stressful to be in the process, especially in these last phases when we cannot do anything but wait. (applied for non degree visiting scholar program)

    Thank you so much in advance!


    • phdfriend

      Dear Sandra, unfortunately, I can’t give you a qualified answer to that question. The best contact for that question is your local US Embassy. Best!

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