The 2020-2021 Global UGRAD Student Application

The 2020-2021 Global UGRAD Student Application is now open!

Deadline: December 31st, 2019

The Global UGRAD Program is a U.S. Department of State sponsored initiative that grants scholarships to undergraduate level students from over 60 countries. Students are placed at colleges and universities across the United States where they participate in one semester of undergraduate, non-degree study. The scholarship covers international travel, tuition, room and board, accident/sickness insurance, a small monthly stipend, and funding for books. Participants will live in campus housing facilities with American peers. Global UGRAD is a substantive exchange program designed to expose students to the U.S. educational system, society, and culture. All students are required to participate in volunteer community service activities and are encouraged to participate in professional development activities as part of the Global UGRAD Program. Students leave the U.S. with the tools to become leaders in their professions and home communities. Global UGRAD alumni often go on to receive Fulbright grants, obtain prestigious international internships, and work in business and government in their home countries. The program is highly competitive, and merit based. Finalists will be selected based on academic excellence, leadership potential, and their preparedness for study in the United States.


Global UGRAD is open to all academic fields of study and does not discriminate based on race, color, gender, sexual orientation, religion, ethnicity, or disability.


The Global UGRAD Program is open to anyone who is/has:

  • Over 18 years of age;
  • A citizen of Albania, currently residing in that country;
  • Completed their first year of undergraduate study prior to starting their Global UGRAD Program;
  • Enrolled as an undergraduate in good standing at any accredited university, public or private, and has at least one semester remaining at their home university at the conclusion of the UGRAD program; The Global UGRAD program cannot be the final academic term of a student’s undergraduate study.
  • A solid command of written and spoken English (English Language training for some finalists is possible); able to begin studies in the United States in August 2020 or January 2021 (selected participants may not defer to a later date);
  • Eligible to receive and maintain a U.S. student exchange visa (J-1) required for the program;
  • Committed to returning to their home country after the completion of the program.

Individuals in the following circumstances are not eligible for the Global UGRAD Program:

  • S. citizens and permanent residents of the United States;
  • Individuals currently studying, residing, or working outside of their home country;
  • Local employees of the U.S. missions abroad who work for the U.S. Department of State and/or the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID); employees are also ineligible for one year following the termination of employment;
  • Current World Learning employees and their immediate family members.

A complete application consists of the following components:

  • The application
  • An essay
  • Copy of passport bio page or ID Card
  • Official academic transcripts for years of university study (with English translations)
  • Two letters of reference (with English translations). One reference letter must be academic and written by a professor or assistant professor from the candidate’s major field of study. A second reference may come from a non-academic aspect of the candidate’s life and work.
  • And grade equivalence between local grading system and U.S. grading system.
English Language Ability

A TOEFL score is not required at the time of application. Selected candidates will be requested to take the Official TOEFL test. The program will cover the cost of the Official test.


It is required that interested candidates APPLY ONLINE!

Get Started! The deadline is December 31, 2019 5PM EST. (11:00 PM Albanian Time)

Click Global UGRAD online application to start your application!


To register for the Program and complete the UGRAD application use Google Chrome and Mozilla Firefox. We do NOT recommend using a mobile phone or Internet Explorer. Don’t use special characters/accents. The system only recognizes the English alphabet. Review your work! Only click “submit” if you are 100% ready to do so. Until then, click “save”.


(Please read all instructions and information carefully before completing application)